Friday, June 14, 2013

More disgusting news from Walmart

Just when you thought the news about Walmart couldn't get worse, you learn the company has only been hiring temporary workers at many stores for the past few months.

Reuters surveyed 52 stores, one in every state, and found: 
...27 were hiring only temps, 20 were hiring a combination of regular full, part-time and temp jobs, and five were not hiring at all. The survey was based on interviews with managers, sales staff and human resource department employees at the stores... 
The hiring strategy could save Wal-Mart money by trimming labor costs at a time when its margins remain under pressure. Many consumers are still struggling given a high jobless rate and lack of income growth...
Yeah, well, the reason consumers are struggling is because of Walmart

In other disgusting Walmart news, we learn the company is buying clothes from Bangladesh factories that it said it had banned because they're so dangerous. Pro Public reports:
The world's largest retailer, Walmart, last month released a list of more than 200 factories it said it had barred from producing its merchandise because of serious or repeated safety problems, labor violations or unauthorized subcontracting. 
Teamsters organizer Mark MacPherson and his wife Lori
at a recent rally against Walmart
But at least two of the factories on the list have continued to send massive shipments of sports bras and girls' dresses to Walmart stores in recent months, according to interviews and U.S. customs records. 
In June 2011, Walmart said, it banned the Bangladeshi garment factory Mars Apparels from producing goods for the retail giant. But over the last year, Mars has repeatedly shipped tons of sports bras to Walmart, according to U.S. customs records and Mars owners. The most recent shipment was in late May, almost two years after Walmart claims it stopped doing business with the Bangladeshi firm. 
A second Bangladeshi clothing maker, Simco Dresses, was blacklisted in January but continued shipping to Walmart Canada into March.
People who work for Walmart and its suppliers are fed up with being impoverished, injured and killed.   About a hundred walked off the job in late May and boarded buses to company headquarters for a week of protests and rallies. A Walmart worker, Janet Sparks, spoke out against Walmart's part-time, low-wage jobs at the company's annual meeting. She was joined by a Bangladeshi labor activist who demanded Walmart do more to improve workplace safety.

The Teamsters are supporting Walmart workers in their quest for better treatment. Mark MacPherson, an organizer for Joint Council 37 in Portland, Ore., and Teamsters from Local 58 joined actions at local Walmart stores on June 7, the day of the annual meeting. Rallies were held at dozens of Walmart stores around the U.S. that day.

Brother MacPherson tells us about 150 people came to the rally in Portland, including Teamsters, UFCW and SEIU members. Some people had entered the store and were threatened with arrest if they didn't leave.
There were no other confrontations, very peaceful. The police had a heavy patrol in surveilance. The group marched and chanted slogans. ... The local news did not show up, or report on it.