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It is no secret that Walmart, the nation’s largest employer, is also one of the most exploitative and abusive. What most people don’t know is that, despite not having any stores in New York, the gigantic company exercises a pernicious influence over the employment practices of city-based businesses.

“New Yorkers have rejected Walmart (it tried three times to plant its flag here but failed), but unfortunately many employers in our city are following its worst practices,” said Maritza Silva-Farrell, lead political organizer of ALIGN, a community organization.

Those “worst practices” go beyond meager wages and include chaotic part-time scheduling and disrespect for workers that have also become common in New York. This was exposed in a new report, “Low-Wage Rage: How Walmart and the Walton Family Harm New York City’s Workforce,” which was released Thursday before a march that, with the slogan “Stop Walmart’s war on workers,” was part of a National Day of Action against the retail chain and its owners.

“Walmart and the Walton family could easily decide tomorrow to pay a fair wage, and give us a true path to the middle class while also boosting the company’s sales. We help them make over $16 billion each year in profits,” said Montressia Williams, a Walmart employee from Racine, Wisc., one of many workers who came to New York from Denver, Cincinnati, Dallas, Chicago, Orlando, Miami, Minnesota, and Wisconsin to participate in the march to Walmart heiress Alice Walton’s luxury building on Park Ave. Similar protests took place in Washington, D.C. and Phoenix, where workers also confronted members of the Walton family.

The Walmart workers, who marched with hundreds of retail, fast food, and supermarket employees, demanded better treatment and higher wages. The march started at a McDonald’s nearby and ended at Walton’s apartment building, where 26 participants were arrested after they refused to leave the street in front of her condo.

Stuart Appelbaum, president of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU), whose union has negotiated contracts that include the strong scheduling protections nonunion low-wage workers were calling for at the march, had this to say:


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