Everything that is wrong in the world, WalMart seems to have a way of emphasizing it.
Low wages, not being able to provide for a family, lack of proper health insurance, that pretty much describes some of the people working at WalMart. So what does one store do to help out their employees? No sillies, they didn’t increase their wages, they decide to hold a charity food drive!
What the hell, Walmart?
A Canton, Ohio, store is holding a food drive for employees, according to an advocacy organization with ties to the United Food and Commercial Workers Union. Signs attached to bins located in employee backrooms ask workers to “donate food items here so associates in need can enjoy Thanksgiving dinner.”
Kory Lundberg, a Walmart spokesman, said the food drive is proof that employees care about each other.
“It is for associates who have had some hardships come up,” he said. “Maybe their spouse lost a job.
“This is part of the company’s culture to rally around associates and take care of them when they face extreme hardships,” he said.
Lundberg said holding the food drive at the Canton Walmart was decided at the store level. However, the effort could be considered in line with what happens company-wide. The Associates in Critical Need Trust is funded by Walmart employee contributions that can be given through payroll deduction. He said employees can receive grants up to $1,500 to address hardships they may encounter, including homelessness, serious medical illnesses and major repairs to primary vehicles. Since 2001, grants totaling $80 million have been made.
But an employee at the Canton store wasn’t feeling that Walmart was looking out for her when she went to her locker more than two weeks ago and discovered the food drive containers. To her, the gesture was proof the company acknowledged many of its employees were struggling, but also proof it was not willing to substantively address their plight.
The employee said she didn’t want to use her name for fear of being fired. In a dozen years working at the company, she had never seen a food drive for employees, which she described as “demoralizing” and “kind of depressing”. The employee took photos of the bins, and sent them to the Organization United for Respect at Walmart, or OUR Walmart, the group of associates holding the strikes in Cincinnati and Dayton.
Last week, Yahoo’s 24/7 Wall Street identified the country’s 10 worst paying employers, based on the methods utilized by the National Employment Law Project in its 2012 report, “Big Business, Corporate Profits, and the Minimum Wage.” Guess who made first place? Walmart, of course. Followed by McDonald’s and the anti-Walmart, Target.
Instead of Walmart collecting donations for its employees, maybe they should figure out better ways to help them out. Starting with a higher minimum wage, and hell, throw in one of those Vizio televisions, so they can pawn it and get a few extra dollars in their pockets.