Majority in Wal-Mart Voted Against "Right to Have Our Voices Heard," Betty Dukes Says

July 5, 2011
Video Interview

Following a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing last week assessing the impact of recent Supreme Court decisions on corporate accountability, ACSblog spoke with Betty Dukes, the lead plaintiff in one of the most notable cases this term in which the court sided with corporations, Wal-Mart v. Dukes.

Dukes lamented that the Supreme Court’s decision in Wal-Mart was a vote against the rights of her and her fellow plaintiffs “to have our voices heard.”

“I feel that my rights have been violated,” she said, alluding to the claims of egregious gender discrimination in the case, “and I want to address [that] openly and honestly in a court of law.”  

During the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Dukes expressed concern that women would be deterred from going forward with their employment discrimination claims against Wal-Mart, now that the court had blocked their ability to sue together as a class and halted a case that started ten years ago.

"It is not easy to take on your own employer,” she said. “It is even more difficult when that employer is the biggest company in the world. In this country, there are many Betty Dukes who want their voices to be heard when they are denied equal pay and equal promotion. For many of these women, I am afraid that the court’s ruling will leave them without having their due day in court."

Watch ACSblog’s video interview below, and watch the hearing here.