In September, Travis Scott and McDonald’s teamed up to create the Travis Scott Meal. This $6 meal includes a specialty burger (similar to a Quarter Pounder With Cheese), fries with barbecue sauce, and a Sprite. The brands also combined to create limited-edition merch.
But XXL is reporting that the collaboration was all to cover-up longstanding issues within the company.
The outlet states that there was a recent report out that says, “McDonald’s’ recent collaborations with Travis Scott and Latin artist J Balvin were allegedly put in place to thwart racial discrimination lawsuits the company is currently facing.”
“Being that Travis is a Black rapper with a large following in hip-hop, the report alludes to the fact that the collaboration between the rhymer and the fast-food franchise could be used to mask claims of mistreatment by former Black employees, who have taken legal action against the company.”
Right now, there are two lawsuits against McDonald’s that have to do with discrimination. One was filed by two former executives in January. Part of their claims is that the restaurant “conducted a ruthless purge of its Black leaders and fostered a hostile and abusive work environment for Black executives and franchise owners.”
In another lawsuit filed in September, 52 Black franchise owners claim to have dealt with systematic and covert racial discrimination.
Since these allegations have surfaced, McDonald’s has released a statement. They state, “Any claim that McDonald’s collaboration with Travis Scott was launched in response to recent litigation is completely false. We teamed up with Travis—and our newest celebrity partner, J Balvin—because of their love for the McDonald’s brand, their widespread appeal and their loyal following among our younger customers and our crew.”
They add, “In regards to the litigation—these allegations fly in the face of everything we stand for as an organization and as a partner to communities and small business owners around the world. Not only do we categorically deny the allegations, but we are confident that the facts will show how committed we are to the diversity and equal opportunity of the McDonald’s System, including across our franchisees, suppliers and employees.”
So far, Travis Scott has not commented on this report.