The Upstate N.Y. IWW Branch will conduct an informational picket at the Rotterdam Wal-Mart,
Altamont Avenue, on Thursday December 10th, beginning at 5:15 p.m. This action is co-sponsored
and endorsed by Schenectady Neighbors for Peace. The IWW here will observe International Human Rights
Day in accordance with the International Labor Rights Forum and their call to picket Wal-Mart stores over the
issue of clothing produced in Cambodian sweatshops. A paltry minimum garment workers’ standard in Cambodia
is often not enough pay to feed a worker or their family adequately. An initiative by Cambodian activists and
supporters to raise the base pay of garment workers in the country to $177 (U.S.) is what the ILRF, the IWW and
others cite as a good first step to raise living standards for these workers to something that approaches humane.
“In a global race to the bottom for wages in the garment industry especially, workers in Cambodia and places like
Bangladesh face a juggernaut of obstacles to earning a living wage and dignity on the job. One of the main obstacles
is that cheap clothes retailers, working through unscrupulous sub contractors, procure clothes from sources that block
basic freedoms like freedom of association and forbid formations of or negotiations with unions. The factories are run
like prisons, where physical, sexual and psychological abuses are rampant. And retailers like Wal-Mart are happy to sell
you the production from this morally bankrupt system for real cheap. The real question is what’s the human cost of all this?”,
Upstate N.Y.IWW Branch Secretary Greg Giorgio said.
The IWW wants activists to know that, typically, Wal-Mart will act swiftly to remove us from their property and we will shift
to the public sidewalk on Altamont Avenue if necessary. The picket will conclude by 6 p.m.