Activism Economics

Walmart workers start strikes ahead of Black Friday

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Walmart workers aren’t waiting for Black Friday—they’ve already started staging strikes, with workers from Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia sitting in at D.C.’s new Walmart store. According to a press release from organizers:

*Workers in Virginia and Washington, DC are on strike for the first time today and are joined today by workers walking off the job in cities and towns in Illinois, Wisconsin, Texas, Maryland, Oregon, Minnesota, California, Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.*

The strikers comprise a small minority of Walmart workers, but the fact that any workers are willing to take this risk after watching their coworkers disciplined or even fired for activism is remarkable. Strikes are far from the only action going on this week, as well.
Earlier this week, workers chained a food donation bin outside Walmart heir Alice Walton’s 5 million Manhattan condo. The bin read “Walmart owner Alice Walton: We don’t want charity. We want decent pay. Love, Walmart workers,” and was a clear reference to the employee food drives some Walmart stores have been holding. Additionally:

On Thanksgiving Day, 12 striking Walmart workers and community members will start a 24-hour fast to protest what they say are wages so low they leave employees hungry.
Salomon Fuentes will be one of them. While he considers his job with Walmart to be one of the better-paid ones, even he struggles. “If me who makes 3 an hour and works full time, I’m very close to hunger, how about the other ones who make less and work less than 30 hours?” he said in an interview with ThinkProgress about why he’s striking.

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“Walmart workers start strikes ahead of Black Friday”