Employees at Walmart this week started to walk off the job in advance of next week’s Black Friday, when three groups backed by unions expect thousands to protest nationwide.
During October, a strike took place in Los Angeles at a Walmart and spread to Walmarts in 12 other cities, with protests held by national and local leaders at over 200 stores asking for better pay, affordable healthcare and fairer schedules. Since then, workers have walked out in Richmond, California and Dallas, Texas along with strikes due in Chicago, Miami, Washington D.C. and Milwaukee.
One couple in Duarte, California became enraged when they each were scheduled to work Thanksgiving and would not be able to spend the holiday with their two children who are just 2 and 5 years of age.
Some workers have said they have been treated unfairly after protesting or complaining about work conditions. Three different groups are calling on the largest employer in the country to end retaliatory tactics against some of the employees who have sought better conditions at work.
A Walmart spokesperson called the movement an exaggerated publicity stunt that is aimed at creating misleading headlines for other employees and customers.
On Thursday, protests took place in two stores in California where police arrested six people because of blocking traffic. A number of customers said they were not convinced by the plans of the workers.
One customer said that if you are hired and know you might have to work a holiday, then it is your choice before accepting the job.
Rumors are that a number of employees will walk out in protest late Thanksgiving night and on Black Friday the following day.