Making Change at Walmart, an effort by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union to advocate for the retailer to pay employees a living wage, is kicking off a campaign this month, with Arkansas among the target states.
From the group’s press release:
For the past week, Making Change at Walmart has been alerting taxpayers and shoppers around the U.S. to the estimated $6.2 billion federal tax dollars that go towards Walmart corporate welfare every year.
This estimated $6.2 billion Walmart Tax is the result of tens of thousands of Walmart workers forced to rely on government assistance programs like food stamps and Medicaid because Walmart maintains low, stagnant wages and inadequate benefits.
“The solution is simple, if Walmart simply paid all of their employees a living wage, or at least what they claim their average wage is, then thousands of workers wouldn’t need, or even qualify, for government assistance programs,” says Randy Parraz, Director for Making Change at Walmart. “Walmart brags about raising the entry salary for its workers as if they were some sort of “anti-poverty hero,” but we are finding workers who have been with the company 5+ years and still making $10 an hour, which in many states still qualifies you for government assistance programs, and there are still thousands of workers relying on Medicaid, SNAP, and other programs to survive. Why should hardworking Americans have to pick up the tab because Walmart would rather freeload off the government than run a solvent company that values its workforce?”
Below is the flyer organizers have been circulating as part of the campaign: