The Danish trade union pension funds LO announced this week that they will drop all shares of Wal-Mart stock. “The Danish trade union pension funds are showing the way for all socially responsible investors,” said UNI general secretary Philip J. Jennings in welcoming the announcement that they will disinvest from Wal-Mart. Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Jennings warned that walmartization of working life, where workers see their wages fall and social benefits disappear, can seriously endanger social and political stability. “It is immoral that Wal-Mart, which is world’s largest company, uses its economic power to push millions of working families world-wide into poverty and despair. The global union movement is stepping up its response to the walmartization challenge, in support of a sustainable economic and social development.” UNI called on all responsible investors to support this work by following the initiative of the Danish pensions funds and dispersing of their Wal-Mart shares. Instead, they should move their participation to ethically and socially responsible companies, said Jennings.
The UNI is an international services and skills workers union that was established in 2000. The group denounced Wal-Mart anti-worker policies, and called for other unions to sell their shares of Wal-Mart stock. Recently, anti-Wal-Mart activists in Mexico asked TIAA-CREF also to disinvest in Wal-Mart stock.