Korean-American Assemblyman Ron Kim (D-Flushing) announced Monday morning that he had brokered a truce between Korean seniors and a Flushing McDonald’s over seating rights.
During the last week, controversy erupted publicly because a group of seniors have been monopolizing space at the fast-food restaurant on Main Street and Parsons Boulevard for some time, nursing a cup of coffee or French fries for hours. At times, paying customers were unable to find seating.
Police were called in several times to roust the elderly, while the war on words escalated. Many in the Korean community said in their culture, seniors were to be respected and to leave them alone.
Kim stepped into the fray and arranged a compromise during a weekend session with the McDonald’s owner, Jack Bert, and 12 of the seniors. From now on, seniors will have extended sitting hours except during high-traffic hours from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; signs will be posted to communicate the change in Chinese and Korean; and Kim will collaborate with area senior centers in offering transportation to and from the restaurant.
The assemblyman added that police will not be called in the future and his office will work to resolve any conflicts.