Walmart fired me for being pregnant!

Arleja Stephens just started a petition to Walmart CEO Doug McMillon stating:

Walmart must, in the next nine months, create an inclusive policy that RESPECTS and PROTECTS all pregnant Walmart workers.

Arleja Stephens, mother, and her child


I just started a petition titled “Walmart fired me for being pregnant. Let’s protect Walmart pregnant employees from discrimination!”

Here’s why this is important:

My name is Arleja Stephens, and I stand with the thousands of pregnant workers who have been unfairly fired, discriminated against, or mistreated by Walmart— one of the largest employers of African-American and Latina women in the United States.

Stand with me and support pregnant Walmart workers!

I worked at a Washington, DC, Walmart as a customer service manager in order to support myself and my growing family. Enduring a high-risk pregnancy, I required some time to take care of the medical needs and stress that came along with it. Rather than supporting me, Walmart decided to fire me for my absences— even after I presented credible doctor’s notes. Walmart said it did not matter.

Make no mistake: Walmart’s decision to fire me goes directly against the new policy for pregnant workers that Walmart claims to have put in place. Walmart may have even violated Washington, DC’s law protecting the sick time of pregnant women.

Walmart cannot be trusted to follow its own policies— let alone DC’s law guarding the rights and safety of pregnant workers. Stand with me and tell Walmart to create a policy that truly respects and protests pregnant workers

My experience is not an isolated incident; I am not alone. Women across the country reported that Walmart does not allow time off for doctor appointments, that they are not given light work as an accommodation, and that they are scared they will lose their jobs if they speak up or ask for help.

In 2014, after Walmart workers and labor rights groups advocated for pregnant Walmart workers nationally with the “Respect the Bump” campaign, the retailer announced a pregnancy policy that would be more accommodating to pregnant workers. Sadly, two years have passed since Walmart unveiled that pregnancy policy, and many pregnant workers are still being mistreated.

Why is this continuing to happen when Walmart claims to have policies to protect pregnant workers?

Walmart is the largest employer of African Americans in the country. Young, Black, working mothers, like me, deserve better. We should not be forced to choose between a healthy pregnancy and the ability to provide for their families.

Sign our petition to demand Walmart treat their pregnant workers with RESPECT. Walmart must, in the next nine months, create a more inclusive policy that RESPECTS and PROTECTS all pregnant Walmart workers.

Thank you,

Arleja Stephens

Save the Date: #Prep2Grow Twitter Chat

Public Health Emergency.  Resilient People. Healthy Communities.  A Nation Prepared.

From the ASPR Blog:  Why some emerging infectious diseases cause epidemics

Forty years ago, a patient exhibiting symptoms believed to be from malaria sought treatment in a small village in the Republic of the Congo in Africa. Later, it was determined this patient didn’t suffer from malaria, but from a virus that would cause a major disease outbreak decades later and more than 1,000 miles away: Ebola.  So why do some infectious diseases turn into epidemics while others don’t?  George Korch, Senior Science Advisor for ASPR, explains 5 key factors that enable some viruses to cause epidemics.   Learn More >>

Top 10 Zika Response Planning Tips: Brief Information for State, Tribal, Local, and Territorial Health Officials

Planning to respond to the Zika outbreak is can be challenging, but CDC has tools, resources, and guidance for state, tribal, local, and territorial health officials on preparing for Zika. Check out CDC’s Top 10 Zika Response Planning Tips to help you get started. Learn More >>

Preparing together across generations

Disasters can be particularly hard for young children and older adults.  As you think about ways that you plan to keep all of the people who matter to you healthy in a disaster, consider how their needs may change.  Whether you are planning to keep little ones safe or you are starting a conversation with older parents about what you will do to help each other when a disaster strikes, check out these resources to help you prepare across generations. Learn More >>

Reducing Antibiotic Resistance:  What You Can Do

Each year in the United States, at least 2 million people become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics and at least 23,000 people die each year as a direct result of these infections. But there are steps that each of us can take every day – like washing your hands and staying up-to-date with vaccines – that can help slow the spread of antibiotic resistance.  Find out what you can do every day, when your sick, when you travel, and more to reduce the spread of antibiotic resistance. Learn More >>

Wow — over 70,000 people have shared the new voter registration tool!

Want to stop Trump? Here’s an awesome way that anyone, anywhere, can help end his politics of fear and hate. Click to use the Stop Trump tool, and share it with EVERYONE:

Wow — over 70,000 people have shared the new voter registration tool, but there are millions we haven’t reached yet!