On the 1st of June, labor activists and Wal-Mart associates protested outside the Ga Ave Wal-Mart. They were demanding that Wal-Mart re-instate the over 2,600 associates fired when five stores across the US were closed for “plumbing repairs.” Pico Rivera, CA, one of the offending locations, was the target of Our Wal-Mart’s very first walkout over wages. The closings appear to have actually been illegal retaliation for the demands for better wages and full-time or at least predictable schedules.
Wal-Mart has told workers at the five locations that if they want their jobs back when the store re-open, they must reapply for new jobs at entry level there. That would mean starting over at the lowest wage Wal-Mart pays if accepted, plus waiting four months with no pay after their severences run out. Workers deemed part-time, the majority or Wal-Mart”associates,” don’t even get a severence. Although Wal-Mart said they could apply for transfers to other Wal-Marts, it is doubtful the other Wal-Marts would suddenly want about 2,600 additional workers. Wal-Mart claims this is for “plumbing repairs,” but the UFCW says this is solely to punish workers at the Pico store and the other four closures are a smokescreen. A case has been filed with the NLRB (National Labor Relations Board) over this illegal retaliation.
Protesters are demanding that all these workers get their old jobs back with no pay cuts or reduced hours when the five stores reopen. They are also still demanding $15 an hour, the right to a union, and full time, predictable hours. Protesters also demanded that the small businesses across Ga Ave from Wal-Mart get their parking spaces back. Claiming traffic flow issues, the DC government banned parking on the side of Ga Ave opposite the Wal-Mart and put up parking meters on Peabody Street near Ga Ave. As a result, the barber shop across from the Wal-Mart has lost 75% of their business even though Wal-Mart does not cut hair!. This is no doubt a result of Mayor Muriel Bowser being in bed with Wal-Mart and her role in bringing them into the city.
Protesters at the Ga Ave Wal-Mart
The UFCW’s case with the NLRB charges Wal-Mart with closing five stores to punish workers at the Pico Rivera, CA location for demanding higher wages.
Wal-Mart ALWAYS calls the cops when protesters show up