Walmart Moms Go on Strike
June 9, 2014
Moms employed by the mega-retailer Walmart walked off the job in more than 20 cities last week to protest continuing low pay and disrespect
The Arkansas-based company is infamous for paying its employees so little that many of its workers are forced to rely on food stamps and welfare to survive.
Bloomberg View reported last year that in many states Walmart employees are the No. 1 recipients of Medicaid and food stamps benefits, costing taxpayers approximately $420,000 a store.
“We know and have seen that Walmart has encouraged its employees to apply for welfare,” Cesar Michel, a welfare worker at the California Department of Public Social Services told a pro-Walmart worker rally in Los Angeles. “[We] can’t afford the cost of more Walmart jobs.”
Mothers are particularly hard-hit by the company’s anti-worker policies. As AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler writes on the AFL-CIO Blog:
As the country’s largest private employer of women, Walmart sets the pace for all other retailers. Denying hours to its workers so they fall short of a full-time job keeps retail workers, the majority of whom are women, at the bottom, while Walmart continues to make huge profits.
This month’s strikes are only the latest action by Walmart workers fighting for fairness and a decent wage.
The workers have received strong support from the labor movement, including the IBEW.
While all his members make far above the minimum wage, Tampa, Fla., Local 915 Business Manager Randall King says all IBEW members have skin in the game when comes to making change at Walmart.
“We can’t expect to get to where we want to go as a union, if everyone else keeps falling behind,” he said.