Issue Advocacy

As a retailer and employer of more than 400,000 team members, we play a constructive role in engaging with policymakers about many legislative issues. We advocate at all levels of government. 

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We collaborate with third-party experts as well as trade and industry organizations to ensure our legislative, public policy and regulatory priorities reflect the needs of our business, industry, communities and team members.

We’ve shared expertise and engaged in lobbying activities on several issues important to our company, team and the retail industry. Although the specific issues vary with legislative activity and schedules, they include taxes, trade, privacy, product safety, sustainability, data security, health care, and employment and labor issues.

Investing in our team

Our team members are at the heart of Target’s success, and the pandemic has only amplified how their work serves communities and families every day. We’ve long invested in our team by giving team members opportunities to grow professionally, take care of themselves, each other and their families; and make an impact on our guests and our local communities.

Our minimum hourly wage is $15, more than 25% higher than the U.S industry average.

We provide paid family leave to team members to care for a new child or immediate family member and backup daycare options to help manage a gap or unexpected need for families.

In fiscal 2020, we invested $1 billion more in the well-being, health and safety of our team members, including increased wages, paid leave, bonus payouts, personal protective equipment and a donation to the Target Team Member Giving Fund

Our commitment to our team continues when we work in partnership with elected officials and key stakeholders to share the potential impacts of employment and workforce proposals on our business, team and guests.

Creating value in a global economy

In today’s global economy, Target focuses on its strengths while our team members work to imagine and design products for our stores that surprise and delight our guests. These expert U.S.-based team members contribute significant value to the goods we produce and import through global supply chains spanning over 30 countries.

Knowing that good U.S.-based Target jobs rely on trade and imports, we stand for an open and rules-based global trading system. That means reducing or eliminating costly import taxes — especially on basic consumer goods — that raise prices and squeeze our guests’ budgets.

Protecting privacy

Target wants guests to have confidence in the way Target collects, uses and shares their personal information. Target is transparent about the information collected and how it’s used. Target’s goal is to give our guests the personalized shopping experience they seek, while also respecting concerns about how their personal information is handled.

We balance concerns about sharing of personal information with the understanding that some sharing with vendors or third parties is needed to deliver products, facilitate transactions, make guests’ shopping experience easier and more convenient, and provide guests with personalized offers and ways to save money. 

We seek to be a constructive partner in the development of federal and state privacy laws with the objective of providing the balance needed by our guests both for their information to be appropriately handled and for their shopping experience to meet expectations.

Employee scheduling

Our stores attract a diverse and talented pool of team members, in part because we offer flexible scheduling policies. Hourly team members establish the hours they are available to work, and Target builds schedules around their availability according to business needs. Several cities and states have introduced legislation that would mandate how retailers and other businesses schedule employees and even how they communicate schedule changes to their teams.

In close partnership with headquarters business teams and store leaders, as well as many of our retail peers, Target meets with policymakers on scheduling proposals. Our goal is to have constructive conversations where we can share the potential impacts of scheduling legislation on our business, team members and guests.

Payments

Target processes over a billion transactions annually, giving us insights into the payment options guests want. We have been taking steps to adopt the latest payment innovations, including mobile payment technologies, to provide fast, easy and secure payment options to our guests who shop in our stores and across all digital channels.

Target is advocating that policymakers speed payments from consumer bank accounts and facilitate secure, faster payments. Of the more than one billion Target transactions per year, slightly fewer than half come directly from consumers’ bank accounts. Increasingly, guests are expecting payments to happen in real time and should be available everywhere in their shopping experience both for purchases and returns. 

As a founding member of the Faster Payments Council, Target is also working with all stakeholders in the payments ecosystem as well as federal policymakers to achieve a real-time payments system that consumers want.

Securing Target’s owned brands worldwide

Design has been central to Target’s DNA for decades. As one of the top trademark filers in the world, our trademark portfolio includes more than 40 owned brands registered in the United States and in over 80 countries worldwide. These owned brands are developed and created collaboratively at our Minneapolis headquarters.

We are increasingly concerned about fraudulent trademarks flooding the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). When the USPTO approves a fraudulent trademark application, it can effectively block our legitimate efforts to trademark our owned brand products.
Target is advocating for changes to processes at the USPTO and we have proposed the use of specialized teams, training and new technology to help better identify fraudulent filings. 

Congress is considering these ideas and others to deter bad actors and reduce the number of fraudulent trademarks that are erroneously approved. Target seeks to be a constructive partner with other brand holders and policymakers to effect change that will protect the innovation of U.S. businesses and the integrity of the U.S. trademark system.

Advocacy reporting

Target publicly reports its federal advocacy activities every three months as required by law with the Secretary of the U.S. Senate and the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives. Our recent federal reports are available below:

Q3 2021 Lobbying Report
Q2 2021 Lobbying Report
Q1 2021 Lobbying Report
Q4 2020 Lobbying Report
Q3 2020 Lobbying Report
Q2 2020 Lobbying Report
Q1 2020 Lobbying Report
Q4 2019 Lobbying Report
Q3 2019 Lobbying Report
Q2 2019 Lobbying Report
Q1 2019 Lobbying Report
Q4 2018 Lobbying Report
Q3 2018 Lobbying Report
Q2 2018 Lobbying Report
Q1 2018 Lobbying Report
Q4 2017 Lobbying Report
Q3 2017 Lobbying Report
Q2 2017 Lobbying Report
Q1 2017 Lobbying Report

We also indirectly engage in advocacy through our memberships in trade associations and other policy-based organizations, which support their member companies by offering educational forums, public policy advocacy and advancement of issues of common concern. Given the diversity of interests, viewpoints and broad membership represented by these organizations, the positions they take do not always reflect Target’s views.

Our financial support of trade associations and other policy-based organizations is limited to educational, lobbying and association management activities. We expressly require that our financial contributions to these organizations not be used for making campaign contributions to candidates or to influence the outcome of specific elections or ballot initiatives.

We report the identity of the trade associations and other policy-based organizations that we support, together with the aggregate amount of our financial support. In addition, because membership dues used for lobbying activities are not deductible for U.S. tax purposes, we also show the portion of our total dues that are not tax deductible.

Information on our support of trade associations and other policy-based organizations is updated annually and is available below: