Walmart moves “Black Friday” earlier on Thanksgiving night
Walmart is cancelling Thanksgiving plans for many of its employees who will now have to work on the holiday as the retail giant kicks off its holiday sale at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving day, rather than waiting until the stroke of midnight on Black Friday. Predictably, this move has triggered Walmart’s competitors, such as Sears, Target, and Best Buy, to open earlier as well. The result is troubling for advocates for workers’ rights, as Walmart has encroached repeatedly on a holiday that traditionally involves plenty of time spent with family and away from work. The decision to move up the start of Black Friday sales to Thursday could be an attempt to thwart the workers’ organization efforts scheduled for Black Friday.
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Richmond Walmart Workers Hold Sit-In inside Store, Then Walk Off the Job
Workers at the Walmart Supercenter in Richmond, CA held a sit-in demonstration before walking off the job on November 7th. Joined by community leaders who have called for changes at Walmart, the sit-in, which coincided with the store’s grand re-opening, was in response to illegal intimidation from a store manager. “We will not be silenced by Walmart for standing up for respect and against harassment, intimidation, and retaliation,” said Mario Hammod, a worker at the Richmond Walmart and a member of the national Organization United for Respect at Walmart (OUR Walmart). The sit-in has helped to build momentum surrounding the Black Friday strikes, which are intended to deeply affect Walmart on one of its most profitable days of the year.
(International Supermarket News)
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Wal-Mart’s Walton Denies Breaking Campaign Finance Laws
Jim Walton, the son of Walmart founder Sam Walton, denies allegations that he broke campaign finance laws in 2008, and he wants the union-backed anti-Walmart group Making Change at Walmart to apologize and withdraw the complaint. Making Change at Walmart has stated it stands by its claim and wants the Federal Election Commission to investigate. Meanwhile, a spokesman for the FEC says the agency has not received either the complaint or the response.
(CBS Local (Washington))
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For Obama, Housing Policy Presents Second-Term Headaches
As President Obama’s first administration comes to an end, the federal government remains deeply embedded in the mortgage market. President Obama’s economic team has said consistently that it wants the housing market to be capable of operating without government support, yet it has taken few steps to achieve that goal. The problem is that housing policy is notoriously difficult to tackle, as any effort to overhaul housing and the mortgage market has the potential to create a political firestorm. Now, in the aftermath of the election, many are hoping that President Obama will risk political controversy to address the housing issue fully. After all, the person in the best position to face a political firestorm is a president who will not be running for office again.
(New York Times)
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