Over 200,000 consumers signed a Change.org petition to tell McDonald’s: chickens deserve better than a factory farm.
Last week, the message was delivered loud and clear.
We were proud to stand alongside a coalition of animal protection organizations on the ground in McDonald’s hometown of Chicago, where we joined petition-starter ShaRhonda Dawson to hand-deliver nearly 205,000 signatures to their new corporate headquarters.
ShaRhonda, a Chicago native and mother of two, started the petition when she learned of the plight faced by hundreds of millions of chickens in the McDonald’s supply chain every year. When she discovered that these intelligent birds are provided almost no room to roam and are bred to grow so big, so fast that they can barely support their own weight, she knew she had to take action.
“It doesn’t seem like we’re asking for something crazy. It seems like this is something McDonald’s should have already done on their own. The fact that there is any resistance seems kind of silly. I think that people are showing, in just the diversity of the signatures in terms of gender and race, that consumers all over want them to do better.”
ShaRhonda’s petition received a massive wave of support across the country, with thousands demanding better treatment of chickens from one of the world’s most influential food companies.
But despite overwhelming public support, McDonald’s remained silent on whether or not they would commit to common sense animal welfare improvements.
It was time to show McDonald’s, face-to-face, the growing demand for higher welfare for chickens. And that meant bringing the action directly to their doorstep.
After a silent demonstration in front of their new headquarters in Chicago’s West Loop—including a brand-new, highly-trafficked McDonald’s restaurant—we marched together to the company’s corporate entrance, where we were met by a McDonald’s representative.
“This isn’t just a one person thing. We had boxes of signatures… That kind of showed to me the diversity and the depth of our coalition.” -ShaRhonda Dawson
After promising ShaRhonda he would get the signatures to the appropriate decision-makers, the representative collected the boxes to take them inside…once he called for backup and a dolly to transport them all, that is!
Catch all the action from last week’s protest and petition delivery here via Change.org:
Our efforts drew the attention of local media. If McDonald’s wasn’t paying attention before, they definitely are now. And until they commit to meaningful improvements in the lives of chickens—changes that some of their top competitors like Burger King and Subway have already committed to making—our work is not finished.
ShaRhonda left us with one final message to McDonald’s: “Just do the right thing. I mean, it’s so simple. In this time in our country we all need to try to do something good. We all need to do our part. And this is such a small part we’re asking McDonald’s to do. I would encourage them as a consumer, as a mom, as someone who cares about animals and people – work with us. I think this is a very rational ask. And it’s something we hope McDonald’s leadership will take on seriously and quickly.”
Here’s how you can help right now:
- Help create more change for animals in our food system by making a contribution today. Did you know that a monthly donation of as little as $6 can improve the lives of over 100,000 chickens every year?
- Tweet at McDonald’s to do better for chickens, or leave a comment on one of their most recent Facebook posts.
Let’s keep up the momentum and make a difference for hundreds of millions of animals!