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McDonald’s worker reveals how her manager asked her to pay for her crew meal, sparking debate

Emily played out the whole conversation by role playing as her manager and herself. She wasn't okay with paying for the meal when it should have been free.

McDonald’s worker reveals how her manager asked her to pay for her crew meal, sparking debate
Cover Image Source: TikTok | @mcemily23

Editor's note: This article was originally published on August 24, 2023. It has since been updated.

We get some perks as added benefits to our job. But, sometimes we are even deprived of these benefits. This happened to a McDonald’s worker who posted a TikTok video about how her manager said that she should pay for her crew meal. She did not agree to it as she knew it was a part of her compensation. Emily (@mcemily23)'s video gained over 29,600 views. Here, she did a skit where she had her crew order and she played the role of herself and her manager. “I’m just getting a McChicken and a small fries,” she said. “It’s all I’m getting. That’s literally it.”

Image Source: TikTok | @McEmily23
Image Source: TikTok | @McEmily23

Emily said her previous boss had told her that it was a part of her compensation but the current manager disagreed and ended in some back and forth between them.  “He told me that I would have to pay for a McChicken and a small fry when I should have got it for free,” she said. “And I convinced him to let me have it for free this one time because I’ve always got it for free on my crew meal on my meal break.”

Image Source: TikTok | @mcemily23
Image Source: TikTok | @mcemily23

As per Glassdoor, employees are entitled to free snacks or lunch. @MakayalaLandrum commented, "My location for crew meal was a dollar amount. On your ten? $7. On your lunch? $11" @AllauraAroyo wrote, "Crazy some locations make you pay, so greedy coming from a million dollar company." @deanhardscrabble00 mentioned, "Decades ago all-American meal was free on break but now it's either 50-70% off meals on break and 25% off not on break." @ellieelle shared, "I worked at McDonald’s in 2016 and it was always a free medium meal ( any burger and any drink)." @danyelle shared their own story, "Literally every time I got 10 piece nuggets and a drink and they never said anything until the new manager came but it ended up being fine."

It can be tricky to convince a manager or your coworkers about the company's policy for compensation and even breaks. Another story about a McDonald's employee, Mario Scott, who goes by @cactusmvrks on TikTok posted about work-life balance and the video went viral. He discussed taking a 30-minute break at work in the viral video. Scott regularly posts about his experience as a McDonald’s employee. As of this week, his video has over 1.8 million views. “I know you’re on break, but we’re really struggling,” the overlay text on the video read. However, Scott did not move after he received this information about a supposed rush. He looked unperturbed, sat in his booth and ate his McNugget in peace.

Image Source: TikTok | @cactusmvrkss
Image Source: TikTok | @cactusmvrkss

He captioned the video, "I don't care if anyone ordered 25 Mcdoubles!! I'm on break," with several laughing emojis. His lighthearted response reflected his commitment to maintaining the boundaries of his designated break time, regardless of the demands of the busy restaurant. Scott received support from other TikTok users as the video amassed 1.4m views, 261.1k likes, and hundreds of comments. 

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