For Immediate Release: December 13, 2017
Contact: Amy Ritter, (202) 251-5907
WALMART HEADQUARTERS BANS ITS OWN EMPLOYEES
“At this time, you’re not allowed to come into the building”
Bentonville, AR — Today, a delegation of current Walmart workers visited Walmart’s corporate office in Bentonville, Arkansas to present a petition to management asking for reinstatement of holiday pay, and were abruptly met by a Walmart corporate representative who denied them entrance into the building.
“I’ve always been told that I can go to management with any issue, but here I am, after traveling 6 hours to be here, trying to get an answer from Walmart about why they took holiday pay away, and they won’t even let me in the building. It’s really upsetting and hurtful. Why is it that I’m being banned from entering the corporate office and left standing out in the parking lot, while I can see other people walking right through the front door?” says James Collins, one of the Walmart associates who tried to enter Walmart’s corporate office today.
Video testimony from 2 of the Walmart workers denied entrance today and how the workers felt:
The delegation of current Walmart workers, one of whom has been working for Walmart for over 20 years, were traveling with Making Change at Walmart (MCAW), a project of the United Food & Commercial Workers International union, whose campaign to make Walmart a more responsible employer includes a 2017 holiday initiative around reinstatement of holiday pay for Walmart workers.
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Facts on Walmart’s Holiday Pay and Paid Time Off Policy:
- In a 2014 statement, Walmart estimated that it will spend more than $70 million in holiday pay for its hourly store associates that year.
- Walmart eliminated holiday pay in 2016, replacing it with a policy where workers accrue paid time off based on hours worked.
- Under this policy, a new part-time Walmart worker has to work 43.33 hours to get just one paid hour off, which could take weeks to accrue given Walmart’s inconsistent scheduling.
- Holiday pay, for those who work on the holiday, typically includes a premium above and beyond what they are paid hourly. And, in the case of many union retail workers, they are given holiday pay even if they don’t work that day.
Facts on MCAW’s 2017 Holiday Initiative:
- MCAW’s 2017 holiday campaign is focused on having Walmart restore holiday pay for its 1.5 million workers and is a 6-week national initiative to highlight Walmart’s failure to do what every responsible employer does – pay its workers holiday pay, especially those who must work on special days, like Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve.
- The second series of coordinated actions involve “santas on strike” in 13 cities across 11 states picketing outside of Walmart locations with the message: “no holiday pay, no sleigh.”
- For the first series of holiday actions, MCAW, workers, turkeys, activists and allies gathered near Walmart locations in 7 cities across 6 states to pass out informational flyers on Walmart’s ‘no holiday pay’ policy over the Thanksgiving holiday.
- The campaign also released a national 30-second ad during the week leading up to Thanksgiving and during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade on local NBC affiliates in the Madison, Cincinnati, Phoenix, and Sacramento media markets.