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Workers say Walmart’s ‘Extra Day’s Pay’ for Thanksgiving is a Sham

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Laura ClawsonTo make it sound less problematic that its stores are opening at 6 pm on Thanksgiving, Walmart has been telling anyone who’ll listen that it’s giving “an extra day’s pay” to those working the holiday. Awesome! Now tell me what you mean by “day.”

No, silly, Walmart doesn’t mean everyone who works Thanksgiving gets eight hours of extra pay. They get the average of the hours they’ve worked over the previous two weeks. And that’s where some Walmart workers say the problems lie:

Gertz and other Wal-Mart workers say their hours are cut prior to the holidays, so their average daily wage also goes down.Last year, Gertz’s hours were cut by five hours a week before the holiday. Her hours were also cut in the weeks after the holiday, which bit into her paychecks further. She said some associates in her store had their hours slashed from 40 per week to 24 in the weeks after.

Raise your hand if this sounds like something Walmart wouldn’t do. [A handful of Walmart spokespeople raise their hands, alone.] Because that’s Walmart: consistently adding the insult of pretending they’re really generous to the injury of poverty wages and poor treatment. Not unlike pretending it’s a kind, caring thing to hold a food drive for their workers who can’t afford Thanksgiving dinner on Walmart pay.

10:17 AM PT: Walmart points out that the worker quoted in this story didn’t work Thanksgiving last year. It continues to not rebut the claim that it cuts workers’ hours ahead of giving them “extra” pay.

This article was originally printed in Daily Kos on November 22, 2013.  Reprinted with permission.

About the Author: Laura Clawson is the labor editor at Daily Kos.


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