Monday was NOT a good day for Walmart.
The National Labor Relations Board[“NLRB”]smacked Walmart around on Monday. Employee criticisms of Walmart practices have multiplied, and one of the more vocal critics is OUR Walmart, a nationwide group of Walmart workers. As detailed in Peter Drier’s article in The Nation, last year, OUR Walmart announced plans to protests at various Walmart stores on Black Friday, 2012 – the HUGE shopping day after Thanksgiving. In response, Walmart management threatened disciplinary action against those who participated – even though the protests were absolutely legal. In fact, David Tovar, a Walmart Spokesman ominously suggested “there could be consequences” for those workers who missed Black Friday shifts.
Some workers ignored the threats and attended protests around the country. And in June, 2013, 100 Walmart workers traveled to Walmart Annual Shareholder Meeting in Arkansas to describe abusive practices at stores. When the workers returned to their jobs, 23 found out they were terminated. Another 43 were disciplined for various reasons – despite the fact that the workers had secured authorizations to miss work.
In a statement, the NLBR noted that Walmart had “illegally threatened employees with reprisals” during two television broadcasts. Additionally, the NLRB found that Walmart had “unlawfully threatened, disciplined, or terminated” employees for engaging in lawful practices. Walmart may have to reinstate fired workers and pony up back pay.
Check out the full article, which discusses some interesting employee practices at Walmart.