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Wayfair employees protest the obvious sale of cots to the detention center



Wayfair co-founder and co-founder Steve Conine (C) and Niraj Shah applaud as they ring the opening bell above the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on October 2, 2014 on the day of the company's IPO.

Lucas Jackson | Reuters

More than 500 Wayfair employees have joined a petition to seek support for a strike on Wednesday to protest the apparent sale of $ 200,000 in mattresses to a detention center for immigrant children along the Mexican border ,

The company sold the mattresses on June 1

3 to a charity that operates as a federal company and manages some of the camps along the southern border. This is evident from a copy of the purchase receipt received from CNBC and verified by an employee. The approximately 1,600 mattresses and 100 bunk beds are due to arrive on Wednesday and Thursday in Carrizo Springs, Texas.

Organizers seeking to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation have published a copy of a letter they sent to management and the company's response to a Twitter account called Wayfairwalkout. They are trying to put pressure on the company to break the relationship with Baptist Children's Family Services, the nonprofit organization that grants the contract and supports the internment camp.

"The US government and its contractors are responsible for the detention and ill-treatment of thousands of asylum seekers in our country," the staff wrote in an undated letter signed by 547 employees. "We want to make sure Wayfair does not help enable, support or benefit from this practice."

They added that the detention of migrants on the southern border is not an ethical business partnership. Wayfair should be a part of it.

Wayfair has not returned repeated requests for comments, with the company's shares plunging by more than 5% on Tuesday and the charity also not requesting comments.

The company told employees that it was customary "to sell to any customer acting in accordance with the laws of the countries in which we operate" a copy of the letter that was sent to Twitter and reviewed by an employee who received it. Investors and clients would be best served by his obligation to fulfill all orders, which means "no support for the opinions or actions of the groups or individuals who buy from us."

The protest will take place at Copley Square in Boston where the company is headquartered.

Employees have asked Wayfair to return the $ 86,000 in proceeds to the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services or RAICES, a nonprofit organization in Texas.

] US MP Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., jumped into her fight with her own Tweet Tuesday.

"Wayfair workers could not bear to make beds to keep children in cages, they asked the company to stop, the CEO said no, tomorrow they'll go out," she wrote. "This is solidarity – a reminder that everyday people have real power, as long as we are brave enough to use them."


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