The Plain Dealer has just published an article, with news that an Ohio Walmart has set out bins that read “Please Donate Food Items Here, so Associates in Need Can Enjoy Thanksgiving Dinner.” The bins are located in an employee-only area of the store.
This sign is an alarming example of just how low Walmart’s wages really are, all around the country. And they know it, which is why they chose to keep this for-the-associates food drive away from the public’s eye.
In the article, Kate Bronfenbrenner, director of labor education research at Cornell University’s labor school, sums it up: “That captures Walmart right there. Walmart is setting up bins because its employees don’t make enough to feed themselves and their families.”
For associates who work at the largest retailer in America, there should not be a need to collect donations of holiday food items for each other. But, unfortunately, there is. These workers don’t earn enough in wages and can’t get enough hours to feed their families on a regular basis, let alone a holiday like Thanksgiving. Oftentimes, associates are forced to choose between necessities, like whether to pay the month’s rent or to pay for electricity. One of the workers quoted in the piece said that, “Personally, it is difficult for me to stock groceries that I can’t afford at the end of the day.”
This, along with poor working conditions, is one of the many reasons Walmart associates are striking around the country this holiday season.
Check out how you can support Walmart workers on Black Friday this year, by going to http://blackfridayprotests.org/