Walmart workers from across the country have been on strike this past week for a buildup to walkout on Black Friday. Walmart workers who are on strike are protesting low wages, health care premiums that are expected to go up between eight and 36 percent, and alleged retaliation from management.
This is all part of a union-backed employee coalition called Making Change at Wal-mart. According to the group Making Change at Walmart, “a thousand store protests are planned in Chicago, Dallas, Miami, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Milwaukee, Los Angeles, Minnesota, and Washington, D.C.”
Wal-Mart spokesman Kory Lundberg called the strike “just another exaggerated publicity campaign aimed at generating headlines to mislead the retailer’s customers and employees. The fact is, these ongoing tactics being orchestrated by the UFCW are unlawful and we will act to protect our associates and customers from this ongoing illegal conduct,” he said, referring to the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union.
Walmart has now filed a unfair labor practice charge against the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, or UFCW with the National Labor Relations Board to prevent the group from holding what the group says will be the biggest protests of this kind against the company at hundreds of stores saying it’s unlawful and attempts to disrupt business.
Wal-Mart spokesman David Tovar said on Friday, “We are taking this action now because we cannot allow the UFCW to continue to intentionally seek to create an environment that could directly and adversely impact our customers and associates. If they do, they will be held accountable.”
Initially, Walmart didn’t take these actions very seriously, but they are now taking them more and more seriously. They have sent memorandums to managers advising how to deal legally with protesters and warning some union-friendly groups that they might face arrest if they trespass during the protests.
Walmart workers at 1,000 different locations across the U.S. said they’re angry that Walmart stores are opening at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, and that they plan to strike to protest this holiday opening.
Other retailers are also opening stores on Thanksgiving Day. Target will be opening to the public at 9 p.m. for its Black Friday sale. Sears will be opening at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving, whic was moved up from 4 a.m. on Black Friday last year. Kmart will be open Thanksgiving Day 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., then it will close and reopen at 8 p.m. Macy’s, Kohl’s and Best Buy open at midnight.
Walmart Black Friday Strike
Workers protesting labor practices threaten the most profitable day of the year.
Walmart Workers Strike on Black Friday
America’s biggest retailer may be in for an unexpectedly painful holiday season. Protesting low wages, spiking health care premiums, and alleged retaliation from management, Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) workers have started to walk off the job this week. First, on Wednesday, about a dozen workers in Wal-Mart’s distribution warehouses in Southern California walked out, followed the next day by 30 more from six stores in the Seattle area.
Walmart employees threaten ‘Black Friday’ walk-out
Last week, Walmart employees started protesting to draw attention to the company’s treatment of its workers. Since the initial demonstrations, Walmart employees across the country have been joining the fight and are disputing working conditions, demanding better pay and benefits along with better treatment. So is this the beginning of improving conditions for all Walmart employees?