McDonald’s closing dining areas amid coronavirus pandemic

CHICAGO — In response to the novel coronavirus pandemic, McDonald’s USA company leaders announced Monday, March 16 the closure of company-owned seating areas and PlayPlaces — with a focus on serving customers who walk in for takeout, order at the drive-thru, or use McDelivery.

The closure was set to take effect at the end of the business day.

“Ensuring the health and safety of our people and our communities is our highest priority as the United States quickly mobilizes to slow the spread of COVID-19. Our decisions are guided by expert local and national health authority guidance,” a release from the company said. “Additionally, we are complying with all local and state restaurant restrictions, where applicable.”

The announcement also encouraged independent franchises to adopt similar operation procedures.

“Our independent franchisees continue to focus on the needs of their local communities and make safe and caring decisions,” the release stated. “Franchisees are strongly encouraged to adopt similar operations procedures while keeping the needs of their people and communities at the center of their decisions. This guidance is supported by franchisee leadership and is expected to be adopted by the majority of franchisees.

We are committed to supporting our people through these extraordinary times and anticipate most crew members with scheduled shifts will be redeployed to support serving customers in the drive-thru, carry-out and McDelivery.”

Officials said they believe “this temporary change is the right decision for our consumers, our communities, and our business, and (we) will continue to evaluate our operations as the situation evolves.”

If customers have questions about the status of their local McDonald’s, they are encouraged to contact their local restaurant.

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