McDonald's launching harassment training program for workers after dozens of complaints
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McDonald’s on Wednesday said that it is offering new workplace training amid controversy following dozens of workers’ complaints of sexual harassment.

The online and in-person training will start in October, with its 2,000 U.S. franchises committing to provide it to a combined 850,000 employees, the company wrote in a news release.

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The company said it could later expand the training globally but will for now start with the 14,000 American restaurants.

During the training, supervisors and employees will use computer-based programs and in-person discussions to learn about harassment and workplace safety. It will also cover workplace violence, unconscious bias, bullying and bystander intervention.

“There is a deeply important conversation around safe and respectful workplaces in communities throughout the U.S. and around the world,” McDonald’s USA President Chris Kempczinski said in a statement.

The new training aims to build on a program launched last fall that was completed by 95 percent of U.S. franchisees and restaurant general managers, the statement read. It also follows the Chicago-based company’s teaming up with anti-sexual violence organization RAINN to improve its discrimination, harassment and retaliation prevention policies.

The company’s announcement comes after dozens of sexual harassment claims — including “groping, indecent exposure, propositions for sex and lewd comments by supervisors” — were filed earlier this year against both franchise and corporate-owned restaurants in 20 cities.

Multiple 2020 Democratic presidential candidates, including former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro, Washington Gov. Jay InsleeJay Robert InsleeO'Rourke ends presidential bid Sunrise Movement organizer: Sanders, Warren boast strongest climate change plans Overnight Energy: Farmers say EPA reneged on ethanol deal | EPA scrubs senators' quotes from controversial ethanol announcement | Perry unsure if he'll comply with subpoena | John Kerry criticizes lack of climate talk at debate MORE and Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisKamala Harris endorses Christy Smith in bid to fill Katie Hill's seat Poll: Biden holds 11-point lead over Warren in Arizona Poll: Biden and Warren are neck and neck in California MORE (D-Calif.), have stood in solidarity with striking McDonald’s workers who want a higher minimum wage and greater worker protections.