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Walmart Workers Striking Over Black Friday Hours

Walmart employees in different cities, including Washington, DC, 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.

Walmart workers in Centreville do not have plans right now to strike; the closest Walmart protest to Northern Virginia is schedule for 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.

Isis November 19, 2012 at 11:51 AM
They should ALL strike, at every store. Why do we need to shop on Thanksgiving? Family values? I think not.
Michele November 19, 2012 at 02:17 PM
Why shop at Wal-mart at all??? Any day??? Half of their workers (yes, even full time) qualify for food stamps and other public assistance. Sure, you may pay less for a loaf of bread, but then your taxes go up because the county/state need to provide for the "workers"! While the Waltons rake in the Millions and brag about it! ARGH!
Janaye M Lawson November 19, 2012 at 08:09 PM
WALMART is NOT the only employer to have people working during Holidays, look at ALL the other stores, ( Sears, Macy, K-Mart, Penny's) not to meantion, Nurses, Police, Fire, waitresses, waiters, babysitters, Maids, a whole bunch of people work Thanksgiving and Christmas. I can remember grwoing up, when ya couldn't even find a 7-11 open on those days, Times have chanaged, BUT... these poeple were aware of their Holiday work when they were hired...IF they strike, I would fire everyone of them, for not working a scheduled shift....THE UNIONS are trying to ruin America, theynhave been after walmart for years... I don't like that walmart sells alot of things made in China but until we start factories Back in America, who we gonna blame... LOTS of people will be shopping Thanksgiving Day just like every year...don't let the Chicago Thugs ruin your day... Ive NEVER heard any employee at Walmart complain about work or pay...its The Unions, not the people....I say SUPPORT WALMART employees by shopping Thanksgiving Day..they need the hours on their checks...besides, most have another job anyways~~ Sign Me, Sick of the Friggen Union BULLIES!!
Interesting November 20, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Janaye Lawson you are absolutely right on point!
Jennifer November 20, 2012 at 05:38 PM
While I find it a little sad that all of these stores find it necessary to be open on the holidays, I for one disagree with the workers refusing to work. I have worked plenty of Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays as well. It is your job. They are objecting that they have to work, not that the store is open on Thanksgiving.

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