Wal-Mart wins ap­peal over Trinity, Wall Street chal­lenge

The Church of England - - NEWS -

AN AMER­I­CAN Ap­peals Court has over­turned a lower court rul­ing re­quir­ing Wal-Mart Stores Inc. to let share­hold­ers vote on a pro­posal sub­mit­ted by the parish of Trinity Wall Street in New York to halt sales of ammunition clips and ex­plicit rap mu­sic in its stores.

With as­sets of over $2 bil­lion in real es­tate, shares and in­vest­ments, the Man­hat­tan con­gre­ga­tion is con­sid­ered the wealth­i­est parish in the Angli­can world. And it has used its fi­nan­cial clout in re­cent years to in­flu­ence the cor­po­rate world.

On 1 April 2014 the parish filed a com­plaint in the Delaware Fed­eral Dis­trict Court ask­ing it to com­pel Wal-Mart to al­low ma­te­ri­als to be dis­trib­uted to share­hold­ers that calls for the com­pany’s board to reg­u­late the sale of prod­ucts that of­fend “fam­ily val­ues.”

The court up­held the com­plaint but on 14 April 2015 a Philadel­phia ap­pel­late judge ruled “Wal­Mart may ex­clude Trinity’s Pro­pos­als from its 2015 proxy ma­te­ri­als.”

In a let­ter to the parish filed at the start of the law­suit, Trinity’s rec­tor Dr James Cooper wrote that the parish was seek­ing the halt the sales of prod­ucts “es­pe­cially danger­ous to the public” and “of­fen­sive to the com­mu­nity.”

A spokesman for Wal-Mart ap­plauded the de­ci­sion say­ing the court had prop­erly recog­nised the er­ror of hav­ing the courts reg­u­late a com­pany’s law­ful busi­ness prac­tices.

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