Walmart workers walkout and leave their jobs.
The Walmart walkout can happen at any store in the country, but so far it has led to thousands of workers to leave their jobs at a California warehouse, and the Making Change organization warns of thousands of more strikes to come.
The organization says that 1,000 protests are planned “including more strikes, rallies and online actions, at Walmart stores leading up to and on Black Friday.” Los Angeles is one of the cities that will be involved in the protest actions, but organizers refuse to disclose exact days and times of all events.
Reuters reports that Walmart will begin 2012’s Black Friday shopping at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving. Having already begun to accept layaway in the middle of September, the retailer expects to cash in on the anticipated 4.1 percent increase in holiday spending. As reported by the New York Post, preparations for the all-night sale have to be made on Thanksgiving Day, which prevents Walmart workers from spending time with their families.
“Walmart has intimidated, threatened, and otherwise retaliated against” them, according to the organization, which collects pledges of workers willing to participate in the strikes. During a first wave of October walkouts, Los Angeles-area Walmart employees complained about instances of retaliation by management when individual workers would speak up over working conditions, the New York Times reveals. Other points of contention are “low wages and short hours.”
Workers allege that employees who complain to management get their hours cut or receive reassignments to less desirable work areas.
“You can count on less than one hand the number of associated that we are aware of who left their post to participate in the rally,” a spokesperson for Walmart notes. Pointing out that there are 12,000 Walmart workers in Los Angeles County alone, company management claims that the impact of striking workers is negligible.
The Corporate Action Network Action Center is a clearinghouse for information on California strikes and rallies.