APWU to Harvard President: Stop Staples Deal or Quit Board

The APWU has placed a full-page ad in The Harvard Crimson calling on Harvard University President Drew Faust “to do the right thing or resign.” The right course of action, the ad says, is for Dr. Faust to use her influence to end the no-bid deal Faust serves on the board of Staples, where she earns $300,000 per year.

Staples is notorious for paying its employees poverty-level wages, the ad points out. A 2012 study by the National Employment Law Project listed Staples among the 50 largest low-wage employers in the country. Since 2007, Staples has paid roughly $80 million to settle more than a dozen class-action lawsuits alleging ‘wage theft.’

Staples foray into the postal business will have serious repercussions: It will facilitate the transfer of stable, living-wage jobs to high-turnover, poverty-wage jobs; downgrade the quality of postal services, and hasten the privatization of the United States Postal Service, the ad says.

“If Dr. Faust can’t use her influence to end this dirty deal, she should resign from the Staples board,” it concludes.