Saturday, May 10, 2008

The following is from the Wake Up WalMart campaign, an international coalition against the labour practices of the international retailing giant. Tomorrow is Mothers' Day, and it is an especially appropriate time to look at WalMart's treatment of the mothers who work for them, at the same time as they peddle sentimental trivia for their consumers. Molly has a little trouble with the American patriotism of the following, but the underlying cause is good.

Would You Treat Your Mother This Way?‏

Open your mailbox and you're likely to find an advertisement from Wal-Mart---twenty pages of smiling women and gift ideas for Mother's Day. Beneath the surface of those glossy ads is the unfortunate truth: Wal-Mart is quite possibly the most anti-family, anti-mother corporation in America.

Wal-Mart faces the largest gender-discrimination lawsuit of all time, with 1.6 million women suing over unequal pay and unequal opportunities. Its managers have told women they "don't belong in management" and that they "can't manage men." More recently, Wal-Mart has repeatedly denied military moms leave to see their children before they deploy to war zones.
Instead of printing more 20 page "Mom's day" ads, Wal-Mart should be printing 20 page apologies to every woman hurt by its unfair policies.

Today, we need to ensure that Wal-Mart respects the hardworking mothers employed in their stores. This Mother's day, join our mission to change Wal-Mart's anti-family policies for the betterment of women and mothers across America. Add your name to our petition to CEO Lee Scott and 3 demands for change.
Click this link to sign our petition
Change won't come on its own. We've seen time and again that Wal-Mart has little respect for mothers, or the sacrifices they make for their families. Just ask Olga Sanchez or Susan Lyons, two long-time Wal-Mart workers.

When Olga's son, Mark, was deployed to Iraq, she requested leave to see him off. Her request was denied. Wal-Mart told Olga that, as a department manager, her commitment was to the company. At Wal-Mart, unfair scheduling policies often take precedence over families, and over the morale of America's armed service members.

Olga's story is just the beginning. Last September, Susan Lyons learned her daughter would be on leave from Iraq during the following December. Susan requested a mere two days of vacation time to see her. Wal-Mart denied the request because of the holiday shopping season. When she expressed her disappointment, Wal-Mart told Susan that if her daughter's deployment upset her so much, her daughter "should not have joined the Air Force."

These stories are a slap in the face to mothers, and they insult the dignity of the armed service members we also celebrate in May.
Don't let Wal-Mart continue to treat mothers this way.
Sign our petition today.
Keep the pressure on Wal-Mart to change and you can make these outrageous policies history.
Sign on to our 3 demands for change, add your name to our petition today
Thanks for taking action, and have a happy Mother's Day.

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