McDonald's restaurants may be parent-friendly in many ways, but at least one mom appears to have worn out her welcome.
Erin Carr-Jordan, a child development specialist and mother of four, has been banned from eight McDonald's in the Phoenix area, presumably for swabbing the children's play areas for germs.
The Chicago Tribune reports that Carr-Jordan believes she was banned from the restaurants for sharing lab results with local health authorities showing the presence of infectious staph bacteria, among other pathogens, at a McDonald's restaurant.
Carr-Jordan has been crusading against dirty play areas in restaurants for about eight months now. McDonald's hasn't been her only target, and she's fighting the battle in various ways. In addition to the swabbing, she tends to take video evidence as well.
On her website, Kids Play Safe, you'll find about two dozen videos she says were taken at play areas in McDonald's and Burger Kings around the country, detailing curse words scrawled on plastic slides; gum and muck stuck into the crevices and corners of the play structures; plus general grime and dirtiness.
It's stomach-turning stuff.
Carr-Jordan has had a growing a media presence in newspapers and on television -- she was recently invited to talk about her findings on Anderson Cooper's daytime show -- but it wasn't until she was actually banned from a McDonald's that the real media frenzy began.
Carr-Jordan did not respond to a request for comment, but on the Kids Play Safe Facebook page, she writes that earlier this week she received a hand-delivered notice from an attorney representing a McDonald's franchise owner, informing her that she was prohibited from entering any of his McDonald's.
"What does that tell you about him and his establishments?" she wrote. "I'm thinking it means he doesn't want me to find out what's in there!"
Danya Proud, a spokeswoman for McDonald's, sent this statement to The Times:
"We take feedback about our restaurants extremely seriously. Over the past several months we have engaged in open and honest dialogue with Dr. Carr-Jordan in an effort to address her concerns and review her findings. We are still committed to doing this.
"That said, it appears recent actions by Dr. Carr-Jordan have become disruptive to the employees and customers within our franchisee's restaurants, which prompted the letter from his attorney."
Photo: Arizona mom Erin Carr-Jordan, seen at a Chicago McDonald's in July. Credit: Nancy Stone, Chicago Tribune
Video: One of the videos on the Kids Play Safe website detailing grossness at a fast-food restaurant's play area. This one is called "Chicago Filth."