Header Image Mobile Header Image


06/27/2018 | Restoring a Fair Workweek

Toys R Us Workers Are Standing Up and Taking Action

Toys R Us workers are standing up and taking action as over 33,000 workers and their families lost the jobs they love last week. Over 100 Toys R worker leaders have protested Wall Street private equity funds, stood with members of Congress, and taken action in their stores calling for both the severance pay their families need and new rules for private equity funds destroying jobs. Thousands more are speaking out online and more are getting involved every day through OUR’s Rise Up Retail campaign. This fight for workers has received significant national media coverage in the Washington Post, CNN, CBS, The Atlantic and The Nation, and their first-ever appearance on CNBC's Squawk Box.

“I was holding my 2-year-old son and speaking in the lobby of Bain Capital’s office when a security guard pushed me and tried to silence us,” said Alisha Hudson from Lexington, Kentucky. “I was scared at first, but then I got mad, and I decided I wasn’t going to back down. And that’s what we need to do right now. We need to stand up, speak out and not give up.”

Toys R Us workers are educating the American public about what happens when Wall Street becomes your boss with a video of their meeting with Sen. Bernie Sanders that has garnering over 3.6 million views. Members of Congress are sending letters to KKR, Bain and Vornado in support of severance pay for Toys R Us workers and pledging financial reform to protect working families from Wall Street greed. These corporations saddled Toys R Us with $5 billion in debt while pocketing $470 million in fees and interest, draining the company of much needed capital to compete in today’s retail economy and landing it in bankruptcy.

The NJ Congressional Delegation including Senators Cory Booker, Bob Menendez, and Representative Bill Pascrell, launched a week of actions this month with Toys R Us workers in New Jersey while the Congressional Progressive Caucus, led by Representative Keith Ellison, spearheaded a letter of support. CPD affiliates and partners like Make the Road New Jersey, New York Communities for Change and NJ Citizen Action all joined worker actions this month.

Momentum is growing as workers take their demands to state pension funds across the country who invest public employee retirement dollars into KKR and Bain Capital. Already Minnesota’s Governor moved the state to halt new investments into KKR last week and workers are pushing Washington, New York City, California, Ohio and Michigan to invest responsibly in funds that don’t hurt working families.

Toys R Us workers and their families are emerging as new leaders to push for the next wave of financial reform which stops Wall Street from playing games with our jobs.