For immediate release
July 21, 2011
Yesterday the White House hosted America’s number one low road anti-union employer at an event to highlight the First Lady’s laudable program to end childhood obesity. We at UNITE HERE are very disappointed by this needless affront to all who care about rising income inequality in America.
No company in the United States has done more to drive down wages of working Americans than Walmart, which pays wages so low that its own employees must resort to public assistance programs to feed their own families. No company in America goes to greater lengths to coerce its employees from joining a union than Walmart.
The root cause of rising levels of food-related illness, hunger, and "food deserts" in America is the refusal of companies like Walmart to pay working Americans enough to afford healthy food. How many Walmart workers live in food deserts or are receiving food assistance from taxpayers simply because the company will not pay fair wages and benefits?
Surely, the White House could have found other, more deserving companies to join the First Lady’s much-needed effort. In America, we can have good food and good jobs for those who produce and sell good food.
UNITE HERE International Union represents 250,000 hotel, food service, gaming, and manufacturing workers in the United States and Canada. Visit www.unitehere.org for more information.