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McDonald’s announces that it is preparing to re-open its restaurants, including those in Derry

Staff safety measures will mean a change to how the company operates

McDonald's

McDonald's planning on re-opening

McDonald’s has announced plans to reopen its Irish restaurants. 

This will take place in stages over the coming weeks, following work behind the scenes to allow the restaurants to open safely.

CEO of McDonald’s UK and Ireland Paul Pomroy said: “Eight weeks ago, we took the decision to close our entire restaurant estate, an unprecedented decision taken in the best interests of our employees and customers.

"Over the last two months we have worked tirelessly to overhaul our operational procedures to enable our teams to return to work safely and I am pleased to write to you the day before we begin testing our return to the UK and Ireland.

“There has been an incredible response to news of our reopening and we know many of you are eager for us to extend our reopening plans at a faster pace.

"The wellbeing of our employees, suppliers and delivery partners’ couriers is my top priority and we will only extend our plans at a pace that enables us to create a safe working environment for our teams.”

Six Drive Thru only restaurants will open in Dublin on May 20.

From early June, drive-thrus will open across the country including, it is expected, McDonald's outlets in Derry.

Plans also include a cap on spending per car, with contactless payment if possible.

Mr Pomoy said: “These join the other safety and wellbeing measures we have introduced in all restaurants.”

Safety measures for staff include:

Fewer people in the kitchen and service areas, serving a reduced menu over reduced hours;

The use of contactless thermometers, with temperatures checked on arrival at work

Perspex screens in key locations in the kitchen and service areas;

Protective equipment for our people including gloves for customer and courier facing positions and face masks, but not the type needed by healthcare professionals;

And additional training on cleanliness practices, including increased frequency of handwashing and extra sanitising of touch points around the restaurant.

“When your local Drive Thru does reopen, it will be different,” said Mr Pomroy.

“Our service will not be as quick as you might be used to, as we adjust to smaller teams and social distancing in our kitchens.

"We expect there will be some queues for some of our busier sites and our restaurants will look different, with Perspex screens at our Drive Thru windows and employees wearing protective equipment.

“I ask that you continue to be supportive of and patient with our restaurant teams as we slowly and safely return.

"We are asking all of our employees to adapt to how our restaurants now work, and will only reopen at a pace that enables them to work safely.

“As we get accustomed to the new processes and procedures, we will look to reopen more restaurants, for longer hours and reintroduce more menu items.

"But only when I am confident we can do so whilst maintaining the new procedures we have introduced for the protection of our people.

“Learning from our initial phases, these tests, we will start to return to towns and cities across the UK and Ireland and thank you for your continued support as we work through this crisis.

"We will continue to keep you updated via email, our website and our social media channels.

“In the meantime, stay safe and we will see you soon.”

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