She asked if her daughter-in-law, Laura Barnhart-Wallace, could share the note on Facebook to see if anyone could translate it from Chinese.
The contents of the letter ended up being so shocking, Christel got it translated by three different people. It told the story of a Chinese prisoner from the south of Guangxi province who wrote of the harsh working conditions they faced, including 14-hour work days and poor food and medical care.
“Inmates in the Yingshan Prison in Guangxi, China are working 14 hours daily with no break/rest at noon, continue working overtime until 12 midnight, and whoever doesn’t finish his work will be beaten,” the note said.
“Their meals are without oil and salt. Every month, the boss pays the inmate 2000 yuan, any additional dishes will be finished by the police. If the inmates are sick and need medicine, the cost will be deducted from the salary.
“Prison in China is unlike prison in America, horse cow goat pig dog [ie, inhumane treatment].”
Walmart issued a statement in response.
“We can’t comment specifically on this note, because we have no way to verify the origin of the letter, but one of our requirements for the suppliers who supply products for sale at Walmart is all work should be voluntary as indicated in our Standards for Suppliers,” they said.