March 30, 2005
Home Depot`s announcement of its "partnership" with the National Council of La Raza and its plan to give hiring preference to Spanish-speaking employees is a signal that yet another corporation feels able openly to hire illegal aliens.
Many Americans have protested through Home Depot`s website—only to receive notes from a low-level "Customer Care Representative." The reply I received from from "Shelby" (See Reply From Home Depot) proves that Home Depot is as indifferent to Americans` opinions as President George Bush.
But despite Home Depot`s dismissive attitude aside, there is a lot angry Americans can do.
SaveOurState`s Turner has described his success when he and his group descended on a local Home Depot store with the intent of "slowing down" business. [VDARE.COM NOTE: Slow it down by "purchasing small items" rather than picketing or violence.]
According to the S.O.S. website the store was forced to add extra security and no doubt discouraged prospective customers from shopping. Result: less bottom line profit for Home Depot.
But the greatest leverage against Home Depot may be through mutual funds.
For those unfamiliar with mutual funds, investors buy shares of a certain fund and the combined money of many investors is used to purchases shares of stock in a variety of companies.
Mutual funds have managers who decide how to allocate the fund`s assets.
Very large funds have enormous influence with large corporations. They receive the red-carpet treatment from Fortune 500 companies like Home Depot.
When these institutional investors call Home Depot, they don`t have to navigate the "Press 1; Press 2" maze.
They call a special number answered by a human and any messages they leave are returned ASAP.
Home Depot may blow off customer website inquiries, but not important institutional investors. Today`s managements know that their highest business priority is their stock price. Whatever jeopardizes that price commands their immediate attention. Stock price depends on investors` willingness to buy and hold. Calls from institutional investors expressing "concern" about anything would certainly qualify.
Our objective is to persuade fund managers to use their influence on our behalf.
Here`s how we do it: You probably have an IRA; you may even own mutual fund shares directly. If you invest your 401K money in mutual funds, you may indirectly own Home Depot shares. If your contributory union pension fund or government employees` pension fund invests in stock or stock mutual funds, you may be able to exert influence on Home Depot.
To illustrate, I receive a quarterly statement listing the number of shares I own in each of the Vanguard funds where I invested. According to the December 31 2004 statement, I own 213.843 shares in their Index 500 Fund. I`ll use that as an example.
And sure enough, a review of the fund`s Annual Report recently mailed to me shows that Vanguard`s Index 500 fund owns 20,671,459 shares of Home Depot stock!
If you don`t have an Annual Report, a little research will tell whether your mutual fund owns shares in Home Depot. Check the table for the site name or phone number. If your mutual fund company isn`t listed, call the number on your account statement.
Check each of your funds to learn if they hold shares in Home Depot. When you find Home Depot stock in the fund`s holdings, write down the name of the fund manager who makes decisions about buying and selling the fund assets.
That`s the person you`ll be contacting to exert influence with Home Depot.
After finding George Sauter listed as manager of Vanguard`s Index 500 fund, I sent an e-mail asking him to pressure Home Depot on their anti-American business practices.
You may have to phone the mutual fund company to obtain the e-mail address and phone number for the fund manager. After sending your e-mail (I included a copy of this article), follow up with a phone call to the fund manager(s).
I doubt if mutual fund companies are expecting action like this, so be prepared to explain your intent as well as to deal with "It`s not our policy to do this." (What they mean is "I`ve never heard anything like this, and I don`t know how to deal with it.")
But persevere—because these fund managers can be real allies against companies hiring illegal aliens.
A sufficient number of mutual fund investors requesting influence with Home Depot may just change its policy.
Good Luck! E-mail me at if you have questions.
S. J. Miller (email her) is a veteran of the IT industry who sought another career rather than "follow the jobs" abroad, and a life-long resident of Border States: California, Texas, Arizona, and Nevada. She was a volunteer in Arizona`s Prop. 200, a ballot measure passed by Arizona voters to exclude illegal aliens from voting and receiving publicly funded welfare benefits.