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McDonald's first UK strike in row over pay get support from Jeremy Corbyn

The strike action was taken Monday (September 4) in Cambridge and Crayford, while a rally took place in Westminster

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn lent his support to workers staging the first UK strike against fast food giant McDonald's .

The global chain faced its first pay dispute as workers went on strike over pay and working conditions.

Workers went on strike for the first time in the UK since the first store opened in 1974 in Woolwich.

A row over "inexplicably" low pay and zero-hours contracts led staff from Cambridge and Crayford to take action.

Around 40 workers were involved in the strike and a rally also took place in Westminster on Monday (September 4).

Labour leader Mr Corbyn lent his support to those who took strike action against the chain.

He said: "Our party offers support and solidarity to the brave McDonald's workers, who are making history today.

"They are standing up for workers' rights by leading the first ever strike at McDonald's in the UK.

"Their demands - an end to zero-hours contracts by the end of the year, union recognition and a £10 per hour minimum wage - are just and should be met."

Supporters and workers from McDonald's restaurants in Cambridge and Crayford, SE London, during a rally at Old Palace Yard, London(Image: PA)

According to the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU) the strike was being well supported.

Workers are calling for more secure working hours and a wage of at least £10 per hour.

BFAWU national president Ian Hodson, who was campaigning at the picket line in Cambridge, said members of the public were offering their support to the workers.

Mr Hodson said: "McDonald's has had countless opportunities to resolve grievances by offering workers a fair wage and acceptable working conditions.

"For far too long, workers in fast food restaurants such as McDonald's have had to deal with poor working conditions, drastic cuts to employee hours, and even bullying in the workplace - viewed by many as a punishment for joining a union."

Jeremy Corbyn has supported the strike(Image: PA)

McDonald's said those taking action represented 0.01% of its workforce, adding that the dispute was related to its internal grievance procedures.

The global chain announced in April that workers would be offered a choice of flexible or fixed contracts with minimum guaranteed hours, saying that 86% have chosen to stay on flexible contracts.

A rally took place in Westminster(Image: PA)

A company spokesman said: "As announced in April this year, together with our franchisees, we are providing our people with the option of a guaranteed hour contract, and all restaurants will have these contracts in place by the end of 2017.

"McDonald's UK and its franchisees have delivered three pay rises since April 2016; this has increased the average hourly pay rate by 15%.

"We are proud of our people at McDonald's, they are at the heart of all we do and we work hard to ensure that our teams are treated fairly.

"Our internal processes underpin that commitment."

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