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Burger King 'Now Hiring Must Be Mexican' Billboard


Outline

Circulating social media post claims that a billboard with the message  "Now Hiring Must Be Mexican" was displayed outside a Burger King in Ephrata, Washington. The message features a photograph of the billboard.

Brief Analysis

The photograph is genuine and the offensive message was indeed displayed at the store for a short time in the summer of 2013. However, Burger King stated at the time that it was the work of a disgruntled employee and was certainly not a reflection of the store's hiring policy. The employee responsible was reportedly fired after the incident.

Example

A Burger King in Ephrata, Washington is making national news after this photo was shared widely across Facebook Tuesday.

Angry consumers have been posting the photo to Burger King's Facebook page--we can only imagine what they've been saying.


Detailed Analysis

A message featuring a photograph of a billboard was the words "Now Hiring Must Be Mexican" is circulating rapidly, causing angst and consternation as it travels.  The message claims that the offensive sign was displayed outside a Burger King in Ephrata, Washington.

The image is genuine and such a sign was indeed displayed for a short time in the US summer of 2013. However, the sign was apparently the work of a disgruntled employee and by no means an indication of the store's hiring policy. The employee responsible was reportedly let go because of the incident.

A November 2013 article on kirotv.com noted:

The incident happened this summer in Ephrata, a small central Washington town. The company said a disgruntled worker at the franchise location put up the message, "Now hiring. Must be Mexican." It was taken down after others saw it.

And Burger King also responded to concerns about the sign via the following comment on its Facebook page, in 2013 and again in early 2014:

We are aware of this image. The sign in question was posted briefly last summer, without approval, at a franchisee-owned and operated restaurant. Please know the franchisee has informed us that the employee who posted and photographed this sign was immediately terminated as a result. The Burger King® team is dedicated to diversity and inclusion.

It is unclear why the message has suddenly begun circulating again, some months after the incident described. But, given that the incident was clearly not an indication of an inappropriate and racist hiring policy by Burger King, the continued circulating of the outdated message is pointless and counterproductive. As is the continued vitriol directed at the company because of the circulating image.



Last updated: January 17, 2014
First published: January 17, 2014
By Brett M. Christensen
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References
Burger King apologizes for shocking billboard image
'Must be Mexican' Burger King sign draws heat online
Burger King Facebook






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