February 27, 2015
Walmart Workers are Winning!
Because of pressure from workers and activists like you, Walmart has announced it will raise wages for all its workers to at least $9 an hour by April and at least $10 an hour by February 2016.
“Believe me, this is a huge win,” says Kevin Banatte, Former Walmart worker and Digital Strategies Fellow at AFL-CIO.
“It shows that when we use our collective power to come together and organize, we can make even the biggest employer in the world do the right thing. But workers are just getting started and won’t give up until Walmart publicly commits to give them $15 an hour and full-time hours.
“For years Walmart has ignored the hardships workers face every day, such as forgoing dinner for the week to pay your rent or scrambling to find care for your sick daughter because you can’t afford to miss a day of work. But, because of brave workers who have taken a stand and hundreds of thousands of supporters across the country, Walmart was forced to make a change.” — Kevin Banatte, AFL-CIO
As much as we embrace the announcement, it is just one battle won – albeit an important victory – in what must be an ongoing war for raising wages. Walmart can afford to pay its employees at least $15 an hour and give them access to full-time work. Walmart workers won’t settle for less, and neither should we.
“If we continue to organize, strategize and take action together, we’ll move closer to creating family sustainable jobs for everyone,” says Kevin, and we couldn’t agree more.
After Walmart announced it would raise wages, low-wage retailers and competitors T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, and HomeGoods said they will boost wages to match Walmart.
This is both a lesson in the power of organized workers to get results and the power of Walmart to do better, not just by its own workers, but by those of its competitors also receiving poverty-level pay.