Washington, DC — In a Wall Street Journal op-ed today, Andy Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants, states his opposition to wage increases, while suggesting that Walmart “wage increases” are to blame for the company’s business woes.
Jess Levin, communication director for Making Change at Walmart (MCAW), the national campaign to change Walmart, released the following statement in response:
“To the countless hard-working men and women who get paid a minimum wage, and who live in poverty because of it, the CEO of CKE Restaurants, Andy Puzder, apparently wants you to know one thing: It’s your fault.
It’s your fault when you ask for a living wage.
It’s your fault when you lose your job because companies, like Walmart, who make billions in profit every year, need to “cut costs.”
It’s your fault when companies like Walmart destroy small business and ship American jobs overseas.
It’s your fault when Walmart or other irresponsible companies promise wage increases, but instead workers get their hours cut.
This is all your fault, America’s working people, for wanting a better wage and a better life.
Given Mr. Puzder’s view of America, we shouldn’t be surprised if CKE Restaurants changes their slogan to “Let them eat cake.”
Make no mistake, this is the way millionaires and billionaires, like Puzder and Walmart CEO Doug McMillon, view their workers, and those who can barely feed themselves and their families on Walmart wages, let alone eat Hardee’s or Carl’s Jr.
As a CEO who earned $4.485 million in 2012 (roughly 291 times a minimum wage salary, as reported by Forbes), he should be a leading voice to pay hard-working men and women better, instead of making excuses for Walmart’s anti-family and anti-American behavior that forces countless workers to live in poverty.
Throughout this year, we look forward to spreading the message to Walmart workers, and even workers at CKE Restaurants, that the time has come for real change.
These good people have earned a better life with their hard work — even if Mr. Pudzer and Walmart disagree.”