Carol Pier, senior labor rights and trade researcher for the Business and Human Rights Program of Human Rights Watch, researched and wrote this report.  The report was edited by Arvind Ganesan, director of the Business and Human Right Program; Jamie Fellner, director of the US Program; Aisling Reidy, senior legal advisor; Joseph Saunders, deputy program director; and Elizabeth Wang, outside counsel.  Lance Compa, senior lecturer at Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations, consulted on the project, sharing his expertise in US labor law and international workers’ rights standards and providing additional editorial support.  Leslie M. Giordano, director of employee benefits at Independent Pension Services, Inc., also shared her expertise on employer-funded worker benefits.  Invaluable research and writing assistance was provided by Carly Tubbs, associate for the Business and Human Rights Program, and legal interns Heather Carney, Kate Lunger, and Anne Shaver.  Additional research assistance was provided by interns Adnan Ahmad, Ann Allegra, Christina Filipovic, Karen Leve, Matthew Perault, and Bettina Warburg-Johnson.  Tubbs also provided staff support throughout the project and prepared the report for publication.  Layout and production were coordinated by Tubbs and Andrea Holley.

Human Rights Watch is especially grateful to the labor law attorneys, workers’ rights advocates, retail professionals, and trade unionists who shared their knowledge and expertise with us.  In particular, we thank George Wiszynski, assistant general counsel for the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, for the extensive information and materials on National Labor Relations Board cases against Wal-Mart featured in this report and vice president of corporate affairs for Wal-Mart Canada Corporation Andrew Pelletier, who spoke with us at length about the closure of the Jonquiere, Quebec, Canada, Wal-Mart store.  We are also thankful to the US government employees at the National Labor Relations Board, the US Department of Labor, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission who responded patiently to our many Freedom of Information Act requests submitted during the course of researching this report. 

Finally, Human Rights Watch thanks the current and former Wal-Mart workers and managers, whether union supporters or opponents, who agreed to meet with us and share their experiences, particularly those in Kingman, Arizona; Las Vegas, Nevada; Aiken, South Carolina; Loveland, Colorado; Greeley, Colorado; and New Castle, Pennsylvania.  Their accounts are the foundation of this report.  To the extent we have been able to demonstrate the significant human impact of violations of workers’ right to freedom of association, it is thanks to their insights and, often, courage.