Carrying signs that read: “Wal-Mart: Everyday Low Wages,” “Wal-Mart: How the 1% Hurts the 99%” and “L.A. Won’t Be Bought Off,” more than 100 Los Angeles workers from “Hollywood to the Docks” flooded the sidewalk outside of the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in support of five Los Angeles Wal-Mart associates departing for the annual shareholders meeting in Bentonville, Ark.
Thirty Wal-Mart associates nationwide, who are active members of the Organization United for Respect at Wal-Mart (OUR Wal-Mart) campaign, are traveling to Bentonville to urge Wal-Mart shareholders to vote against the re-election of Wal-Mart’s CEO Mike Duke and Chairman of the Board Rob Walton in light of recently alleged bribery in Mexico and cover-up by executives.
Wal-Mart associates also will offer a proposal to examine Wal-Mart’s executive bonus plans, put a check on executive pay, increase transparency and base executive bonuses and rewards on performance.
“I am 63 years old and I get paid less than $22,000 a year working full-time at Wal-Mart for seven years. Wal-Mart pays us poverty wages so many associates have to get health care from state and federal assistance programs, but executives are paid millions with little accountability to the shareholders,” says Angie Rodriguez, a Wal-Mart associate and OUR Wal-Mart member traveling to Bentonville.
“We think it’s time to force Wal-Mart executives to play by the same rules as the rest of us.”
Dozens of Los Angeles unions participated in the send-off for Wal-Mart workers at LAX. “We’re here to support Wal-Mart associates and make sure they know L.A. has got their backs in Bentonville,” said Carlos Castillon, president of the Communications Workers of America Local 9588.
“We’re united and mobilizing in Los Angeles to stop the Wal-Martization of all of our jobs, whether it’s at T-Mobile, Verizon, AT&T or Wal-Mart. L.A.’s future won’t be bought off by Wal-Mart or any other massive corporation peddling low-wage jobs and poor communities.”
On Saturday, June 30, more than 10,000 Los Angeles union workers, community members, Chinatown residents and small business owners will come together in what they say will be the largest anti-Wal-Mart demonstration ever held in the United States to keep Wal-Mart out of Los Angeles and send the message that Los Angeles stands united against low-wage jobs and will not be bought off by Wal-Mart.
Original: AFL-CIO Blog