Major Corporations: Stop Using and Supporting Prison Labor

Major Corporations: Stop Using and Supporting Prison Labor

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Companies that we support in our day to day lives are contributing to the exploitation and profiteering of an unjust incarceration system. And it has to stop.

We are calling forth the corporations that currently use prison labor or have used it in the past to publicly stand united against the exploitation of the 13th amendment.

Companies and corporations that currently use prison labor (either directly or indirectly) must stand strong against these inhumane practices. These companies who are still benefitting from prison labor must cease their partnerships or utilization of these practices immediately and put financial and action oriented resources into closing the loophole.

Companies who have formally benefitted from prison labor must come out publicly and stand strong AGAINST these practices and call upon other companies to end their business practices of using or working with companies who use prison labor.

To all the companies who previously were involved with American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC): we ask that you use your lobbying powers and status in this country to pass new legislation to amend the 13th amendment to close the loophole that has been exploited by companies to gain free/cheap labor from incarcerated people.

BACKGROUND:

First, if you haven't yet watched the documentary 13th, it gives a great explanation of what and how the 13th amendment was written and is still being exploited to create a form of modern day legal slavery. It is available for free on YouTube HERE

The 13th amendment states "Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction."

The excerpt in bold has been used as a means of generating cheap/free labor and involuntary servitude through the use of convicts - many of whom have been arrested and charged on vague/petty charges and have been incarcerated underneath a racist and unfair justice system.

Many companies we know and love use prison labor or have partnerships with companies that use prison labor to pay slave wages for their merchandising (McDonalds has used prison labor to sew uniforms, Victoria's Secret has used prison labor to sew merchandise), and call centers (AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon use inmate manned call centers), packaging (Starbucks and Nintendo have used prison labor to package their products).

Other companies have sold products that have been produced by companies that use prison labor (Whole Foods) and we're calling on them to stand adamantly against doing any type of business with companies that benefit or employ prison labor and instate a prison labor zero-tolerance policy.

While some of these prisoners are paid, the reported wages are less than a dollar an hour and in some cases $2 per day. This is not repaying a debt to society, this is working for the prison industrial complex.

LIST OF COMPANIES WHO USE OR HAVE USED PRISON LABOR IN THE PAST: https://www.ranker.com/list/companies-in-the-united-states-that-use-prison-labor/genevieve-carlton

LIST OF COMPANIES WHO HAVE BEEN ASSOCIATED WITH ALEC: https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/ALEC_Corporations

While many companies have left ALEC, their involvement in this organization is not forgotten and they must use their power to fight for justice.