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Mixed reaction to McDonald's non-halal lawsuit settlement
by Samer Hijazi
The class action lawsuit that went public last week against McDonald's corp. and Ford Rd McDonald's franchisee Finley's Management Company has drawn a mixed reaction from the community, with rumors and misinformation leading to even more speculation about the facts of the case. The lawsuit stems from Dearborn Heights resident Ahmed Ahmed alleging that he purchased and ate a non-halal McChicken® sandwich that was falsely advertised as halal.
Ahmed, along with the class of people, are named as the plaintiffs in the case, represented by Michael Jaafar, Zakaria Mahdi and Kassem Dakhlallah, three partners of the Dearborn firm Jaafar & Mahdi Law Group, P.C. The parties have agreed to a $700,000 settlement from McDonald's corp., on behalf of the entire class being represented in the suit. All parties involved agreed that $274,000 of that settlement would be donated to upgrading the HUDA clinic in Detroit, a free medical clinic for families with no health insurance. A second donation of $150,000 towards the Arab American National Museum (AANM) in Dearborn is also part of the agreement.
After the news went public, many residents in the area have expressed their dismay on Facebook, especially on the Dearborn Area Community Members page, where around 4,500 Facebook users discuss local news and events on a daily basis pertaining to the Arab American and Muslim community. Some individuals called for a boycott against McDonald's, others expressed that the class of people should be entitled to more money from McDonald's corp. and the Ford Rd. franchisee. Some even questioned why a donation would be made to the AANM when the lawsuit is based on religious dietary practices and not ethnicity.
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