In honor of Mother’s Day, many of the nation’s most influential women’s groups signed a joint letter that calls on Wal-Mart to address its record of mistreating women workers and help “make this Mother’s Day the best ever for Wal-Mart’s Associates and mothers all across our country.” Participating groups include the National Council of Women’s Organizations, the National Organization of Women (NOW), CODEPINK, National Congress of Black Women, National Committee on Pay Equity, Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW), National Women’s Conference, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, International Women’s Democracy Center, Coalition of Labor Union Women, Black Women United for Action, National Women’s Political Caucus, Veteran Feminists of America, and the Dolores Huerta Foundation The joint letter, entitled “Moms Deserve Better Than Wal-Mart,” challenges Wal-Mart to address the company’s record of discrimination, poverty-level wages, unaffordable health care, and anti-family policies that negatively impact its women workers, many of them moms. The letter states, “To some rich and powerful corporations, these mothers are invisible, representing mere numbers on a balance sheet whose hours, wages, and benefits can be cut without thought or consideration of their endless and tireless work to support not only themselves, but their entire families. It seems that Wal-Mart, more than any other company, sees these women workers as invisible. On behalf of the over 10 million women represented by our member organizations, the National Council of Women’s Organizations calls on Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott to provide family-friendly wages, benefits, and policies for its women workers. Wal-Mart’s women associates deserve a workplace free of gender discrimination and a wage that will support their families. Women deserve better from U.S. corporations — especially from Wal-Mart, with over $11 billion in profits last year,” said Kimberly Otis, Executive Director of the National Council of Women’s Organizations.
The 14 women’s groups called on Wal-Mart to “lead by example” and announce “on Mother’s Day, that Wal-Mart will pay its workers a real living wage, provide good and affordable health care, end its anti-family policies, adopt a zero tolerance policy on child labor, and make a public commitment to a truly diverse and just workplace.” In addition to the Mother’s Day letter, WakeUpWalMart.com also launched a Mother’s Day campaign initiative which includes grassroots actions in 43 cities and 19 states. During the upcoming events, which officially launched yesterday, WakeUpWalMart.com supporters will distribute over 100,000 Mother’s Day Cards at metro stops, outdoor markets, and in front of Wal-Mart stores. For further information, go to www.wakeupwalmart.com