Walmart putting female workers at risk
- International protest in Sao Paulo: Walmart workers from seven countries demand company stop discrimination against female staff, including pregnant women.
- Following two labour court decision in Brazil, Walmart has been fined US$17.5 million million for harassment of its own staff, not allowing workers to go to the toilet, and excessive working hours.
- UNI Walmart Global Union Alliance holding demonstration outside Pacaembu Walmart Store in Sao Paulo tomorrow
Sao Paulo, Brazil, 27 August - Walmart workers from Sao Paulo and the rest of Brazil, as well as their colleagues from other countries in North and South America and Africa, will be gathering for protest action outside the Pacaembu Walmart store at 10.00am on Thursday, 28 August. The protest is to highlight the continued harassment of workers by the company, call on Walmart to comply with Brazilian labour legislation, and to treat its employees with respect.
Walmart has recently been fined US$17.5 million for, among other things, harassing its workers, not allowing them to go to the toilet and excessive working hours.
More than 30 Walmart workers, shop stewards and union organisers from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania, and the USA are gathering in Sao Paulo this week to discuss Walmart’s global violations of worker rights.
Walmart is leading the global race to the bottom on worker pay and worker rights. The UNI Walmart Global Union Alliance has received reports that the company is systematically mistreating women. Women cashiers are not allowed to take regular toilet breaks. Pregnant employees risk their health and that of their unborn child when they are not allowed to take breaks or have their tasks modified away from having to lift heavy weights.
UNI Global Union Head of Commerce, Alke Boessiger said, ”The Walmart model is out of date and its treatment of staff, particularly in this case its female staff is unacceptable. We are calling for dignity and safety in the work place. Profit should not be put above an unborn child.”
Women are also regularly overlooked for training and promotions.
The UNI Walmart Global Union Alliance is currently conducting a survey among Walmart female employees on the issue of equal treatment and opportunities.
We are calling on Walmart to end its discriminatory practices against women and to treat its employees with respect. The company must comply with local labour legislation wherever it operates and allow workers to exercise their right to freely chose union representation.
Store action: Thursday, 28 August, 10AM, Loja do Walmart, Pacaembu, Rua James Holland, 668, São Paulo
Contact: Benjamin Parton, Director, UNI Americas Campagns and Organising, Tel: +598 91 39 28 70
Interviews with Walmart workers from Brazil and other countrees can arranged through the above contact.
UNI Global Union is a global labour federation that represents over 900 national unions and 20 million workers around the world in the private sector service industries.
The UNI Walmart Global Union Alliance is a network of unions and Walmart employees from around the world who aim to hold the company accountable for its labor rights globally.