[ | | | 1 interested person(s) ]

One more reason why not to shop (and for me to rant) at the American-destroying-superstore, and world's largest retailer, Walmart is another successful lawsuit. A California jury yesterday awarded $172 million to thousands of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. workers who claimed that they were illegally denied lunch breaks in the San Fransisco Bay Area. The company was ordered to pay $57 million in general damages and $115 million in punitive damages to about 116,000 current and former California Walmart workers.

Wal-Mart's financial success is attributed to their knack of screwing others. Whether its thier own employeess, community, the economy, or the environment. Walmart uses abusive strategies when selecting products; treating suppliers, competitors, and employees (as is evident with this latest lawsuit). Their impact on world trade and globalization is not to be ignored either. Wal-Mart reports that it purchased $18 billion of goods from China in 2004. Wal-Mart is responsible for about 1/10th of the U.S. trade deficit with China. If Wal-Mart were an individual economy, it would rank as China’s eight-biggest trading partner, ahead of Russia, Australia and Canada.

This latest lawsuit is only one of 40 that are currently in the courts alleging workplace violations against Wal-Mart. In 2002, a federal jury in Oregon found Wal-Mart employees were forced to work off the clock and awarded back pay to 83 workers. One of the other pending cases, accuses Walmart of paying men more than women, the classaction lawsuit is the largest private employer civil rights class action in history ($11 billion).

On top of treating its workers like garbage Walmart received low scores on the Corporate Equality Index, published by the Human Rights Campaign, a measure of how companies treat gay and lesbian employees and consumers. The company received a 57% rating in the 2005 edition, a 43% rating in the 2003 and 2004 editions, and a 14% rating in the 2002 edition. Well below industry standards. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has had to file multiple lawsuits against Wal-Mart because of disability discrimination.

Wal-Mart is also one of the worst when it comes to giving to others. While the Walton's contributed over $1.1 billion between 2001 and 2005, Business Week noted that they donated a total of $250 million between 1962 and 2000. Wal-Mart has to be one of the most wretched companies in corporate America.

I personally refuse to support them (you should too!) no matter how much money I can save. I remind myself and others that the money you "save" is being paid in environmental damage, human rights abuses, lost wages, and community destruction. You never get something for nothing and Wal-Mart is the prime example of corporate America, the bully. The rich get richer till the poor get educated.

Get with it and visit these sites:
Hidden Cost of Walmart Jobs published by UC Berkeley.
Wakeup Wal-Mart
Vermont Wal-Mart Watch
Business Ethics Network

Store Wars: When Wal-Mart comes to your town.
Is Walmart Good for America? Frontline (able to watch online).
Wal-Mart: The High Price of Low Prices
- Download songs from the movie here.

1 interested person(s)

Flatlander said... @ 12/23/2005 10:00:00 PM

Plus, now you can't even have a dance party at Wal*Mart without it getting broken up. Bastards!

Wal*Mart Dance Party Video

By the way, I'm glad to see another montpelierite listening to The National's Alligator.

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