Walmart Workers Striking Over Black Friday Hours

Walmart employees in different cities, including Washington, D.C., are protesting after learning "Black Friday" store hours start at 8 p.m. Thanksgiving Day.

Walmart workers across the country are striking due to the stores opening earlier this year for the Black Friday weekend. The closest Walmart protest to the northern Virginia area will happen at 4 p.m. Monday at the Capital Plaza Walmart in Washington, DC.

Casey Hoag, a campaign communications specialist for The United Food and Commercial Workers, said at the moment, there aren't any strikes planned in Northern Virginia. Between this past week and Thanksgiving, more than 1,000 worksite actions will take place nationwide.

Walmart employees all over the country have been striking for the past few months in protest to being silenced, long hours and little pay and issues with healthcare.

"These nationwide actions are all stemming from employee frustrations. The average associate makes $8.18 an hour. Walmart makes $16 billion in annual profits and executives bring home $10 million each," said Hoag in a recent email. "Surely Walmart can stop contributing to the growing problem of income disparity and start listening to the concerns of their workforce."

In early October, Walmart strike supporters spoke out at the Kingstowne Walmart and passed out flyers informing customers about the employees' concerns. The group visited different stores throughout that week to raise awareness.

"This is happening at about 250 stores and there are just as many workers who have walked off their jobs,” said Beth Pointer, an organizer for Making Change at Walmart.

In October, associates leading the strikes originally gave Walmart until Black Friday to meet their demands, including an opportunity to discuss their concerns with management and the end of alleged retaliations for speaking out. However, Walmart employees have continued to strike at different locations across the country.

Target Responds to Backlash Over Thanksgiving Hours

Target has also gotten some backlash after announcing they would open stores at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day. According to DailyFinance, employees and supporters started a petition against the early opening at online petition site Change.org.

On Friday, Target responded to the campaign on "A Bullseye View," its official blog. The post explains that the early Thanksgiving Day opening plan was created after they received feedback from customers, who said they would prefer shopping right after Thanksgiving dinner instead of in the early hours on Friday. It also insists that Target employees' preferences were considered in making Thanksgiving work schedules.

Unlike Walmart, Target isn't facing organized labor actions during the Black Friday weekend, so at the moment, they're not budging on their early holiday openings.

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James November 21, 2012 at 02:53 PM
walmart.com it is then!
Lulukaligirl November 21, 2012 at 09:35 PM
That's dumb. You all picked to work for Walmart. They didn't force you to join. Would you all rather be unemployed?
Dennis Strader November 22, 2012 at 12:24 AM
Lulukaligirl. You are an idiot. They don't want to work for 8.18 per hour. If your boss decided to change you pay to $8 and changed your hours with no notice you would be singing a different tune. They work it because they need the job. You can't blame them for wanted to be treated better. First they are demanding better hours. Soon they will want better pay. I hope they get both!
carolyn sterling November 22, 2012 at 04:19 AM
This is where the US is headed. Entitled nation. You all voted him in. Just wait. You think you deserve healthcare? Since when did healthcare become a right? These employees took the job knowing the pay rate. Why should walmart or any company pay more especially with the coming and continuing obama doom? Stop blaming big business. Get your asses to work and get off wefare. I'm tired of paying for you. Nobody owes you anything. Unions sick and obama loves them.
Ashley Lindgren November 22, 2012 at 05:11 AM
You're a moron. Walmart sucked as an employer before Obama. A good company takes care of their workers which in turn inspires workers to better take care of the company and their customers. Its not a difficult concept. When you bust your ass for minimal pay and shitty benefits, yes you should be entitled to better things, especially if your higher ups that do less get paid more while you're stuck with all the grunt work. Without people doing the grunt work how would anything get accomplished? Time for big companies to stop treating their workers like shit and be appreciative for all their employees do. It's all about money, seems like you are all about it too, whining about paying for welfare. Some people need it. Hope you never end up broke because you'll have to be a hypocrite. Even the mighty fall sometimes.


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