Stewart Acuff

Jul 18

The Heat’s on Walmart

Yesterday we reported on the silly and desperate Walmart lawsuit against the United Food and Commercial Workers, other workers rights organizations, and a single activist, Gene Lantz.

Now, the Washington, DC City Council has voted to require big box stores building in DC to pay at least a living wage (in Walmart’s case, $12.50 an hour). Big box corporations with collective bargaining agreements are exempt. Predictably, Walmart is stamping its feet, holding its breath, and generally acting like an angry toddler about a city government taking responsibility to protect the rights and living standards of its constituencies.

Walmart sent in a team of well-suited thugs to threaten not to open stores in the city’s lowest income areas. Typical Walmart extortion. Walmart may be the best corporation in America at using extortion to pay poverty wages, destroy small town business districts, and violate federal law regarding workers rights to form unions, violating the 40 hour week, and discriminating against women.

Some Walmart allies have asked why big box stores with union contracts are exempted. The answer is simple. Workers with union contracts working for employers who follow federal law can negotiate their wages, benefits, and working conditions.

But Walmart has bigger problems. Faith leaders, political leaders, community leaders, student leaders, human rights leaders and activists are standing up all over America to demand that Walmart follow America’s laws and respect America’s workers.

Actions are growing across America.

The summer heat is growing on Walmart.

 

Photo credit: (Joe Kekeris/AFL-CIO)

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