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Author Topic: Walmart Gets Busted Forcing Employees to Make Political Contributions to GOP  (Read 814 times)

Offline soflorattler

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If underpaying their employees wasn’t bad enough, Walmart has now been caught forcing employees to make political contributions in exchange for their matching contributions to the employee hardship fund.

According to Bloomberg,

U.S. companies, forbidden to give money directly to political action committees, are taking advantage of controversial federal rules allowing them to ask employees to do it for them in exchange for matching charitable donations.
It’s legal and gives businesses from Wal-Mart Stores Inc. to Coca-Cola (KO) Co. to Hewlett-Packard Co. a way to fund their PACs, which direct money to political candidates. The matching contributions provide an incentive for employees, most of them managers, to contribute to the PAC.

Recipients included Republican House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, Democratic Representative James Clyburn of South Carolina and Democratic Senator Mark Pryor of Arkansas. Wal-Mart has been vocal on issues including the minimum wage.
The problem is that since 2000, 69% of Walmart PAC’s and the Walton family’s political donations have gone to anti-gay, anti-environment, pro-gun, pro-business conservatives like Cruz and Boehner.

In response, the group Our Walmart released a statement from Walmart employee Barbara Gertz,”What Walmart workers really want is for the company to publicly commit to pay better wages and provide steady hours that let us support our families. Many of us can’t pay for groceries or afford rent. Today’s news is further proof that Walmart is determined to spend millions to support politicians who vote to cut food stamps and who oppose increasing the minimum wage, instead of focusing on creating good jobs in our communities. It’s upsetting to hear that Walmart not only exploited the associates in critical need fund to push a political agenda that hurts ordinary Americans, but it also may have done so in violation of federal election laws. This is just the latest example of Walmart acting as though it’s above the law.”

FEC commissioners are deadlocked on whether the practice is illegal or not, but Walmart’s practice of offering 2 to 1 charity donations in exchange for employee donations has caused current and former FEC commissioners to call the practice illegal and over the line.

Walmart is essentially forcing employees to make a political contribution in order to get hardship assistance for their fellow workers who are destitute because of the company’s practice of paying starvation wages. These employees aren’t just making political contributions, but most of the donations are being given to candidates who are opposed to policies like increasing the minimum wage, unionization, and better working conditions.

This is a reminder that if you shop at Walmart, not only are you supporting paying employees wages that they can’t survive on, but nearly 70% of your money is going to support Republicans.

Walmart’s creativity when it comes to harming their employees is virtually limitless. Each low price Walmart offers is subsidizing the destruction of the American worker.

Offline Maroon and Gray

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I would like to discuss the "hatred" some folk have with Walmart.

First, I doubt Target pays anywhere near $25-30k to their average employee.  So why aren't folks hating them as well?

Second, my first job was working for minimum wage.  It was a Christmas job, that turned into a permanent job. However, I knew I wasn't going to work there all my life, and found better employment elsewhere.  That was the late '60s, early '70s.  I believe the job market wasn't all that bright then.
At any rate, why do we think a stock clerk or cashier should be making $30k is my question?
Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.'”
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Offline y04185

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Another lying title posted by soflo.

They gave to democrats as well.  It's obvious he doesn't read before he posts.
Fayetteville State by choice. Bronco by the Grace of GOD.

Offline soflorattler

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I would like to discuss the "hatred" some folk have with Walmart.

First, I doubt Target pays anywhere near $25-30k to their average employee.  So why aren't folks hating them as well?

Second, my first job was working for minimum wage.  It was a Christmas job, that turned into a permanent job. However, I knew I wasn't going to work there all my life, and found better employment elsewhere.  That was the late '60s, early '70s.  I believe the job market wasn't all that bright then.
At any rate, why do we think a stock clerk or cashier should be making $30k is my question?

Where does the $25-$30k come from? Too, you are advocating that employees shouldn't be paid a living wage? At least a wage to where they can afford to shop at the businesses they help make insane profits?

Y, get back to that plate of white folks dooky that you're consuming...

Offline Maroon and Gray

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What is the rate considered a living wage on average?
I got 25-30k from the fast food workers striking for $15/hr

Even tho sadly some/many of Walmart workers are depending on that check as their only income source; I'm not sure a minimum wage job fits that bill.
Aren't the walmart critics demanding that the jobs be upgraded?

But again why are the same critics not bashing Target?  It can't be that one is based in Arkansas and the other Minneapolis?  Or can it?
Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.'”
― Isaac Asimov

Offline soflorattler

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M&G, I don't think location of the headquarters have anything to do with it. I would suspect that if Target treated their employees as Walmart does, then you'd hear from them.

Why Aren't Target Employees Striking Like Their Cousins At Wal-Mart?/size][/b]

Based on the variety of products sold in Costco (NASDAQ: COST  ) , Target (NYSE: TGT  ) , and Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT  ) , a customer would have a difficult time telling one apart from another. But when the products are set aside, one thing does, in fact, separate Wal-Mart, Target, and Costco from one another – the happiness of their employees.

Some customers sense the differences in employee attitude when shopping at one retailer versus another; other customers do not. The news, however, tells the obvious truth: Wal-Mart employees are not happy with their low wages and are striking to change this. In fact, the largest worker revolt in Wal-Mart's 50 year history has just occurred, resulting in over 50 arrests. Target employees, on the other hand, have never voiced their concerns as publicly. This seems strange given that wages between the two companies are similar. Is there something else going on that explains this divergence?

Target versus Wal-Mart
Long ago at the turn of the century, a retailer known as the Dayton Dry Goods Corporation opened its doors in 1902. The founders may not have known it then, but that simple store would grow to become a great American brand – Target. In 1962, the first Target store opened its doors to the public, along with the first Wal-Mart store. Over the course of its history, Target has continued to improve its business model, company culture, pricing strategy, and interior store appearance. Its biggest competition has long been Wal-Mart, followed by other big box retailers like Costco and Kmart. However, when it comes to employee happiness, Wal-Mart is the least of their concerns.

Higher wages don't create employee happiness
Believe it or not, hourly sales associates and cashiers at Target actually make less on average than Wal-Mart employees holding the same position. For instance, Target sales associate team members make an average of $8.34 per hour, whereas sales associates at Wal-Mart make an average of $8.86 per hour. In addition, cashiers at Target make $0.41 less per hour than Wal-Mart cashiers, who earn on average $8.51 per hour. Cashiers at Costco make the most, earning an average of $15.06 per hour, with most non-management roles earning on average $12 to $18 per hour. Based on this information, Target's employees should be rioting, not Wal-Mart employees. So why haven't they?

Target's happy employees
Target's employees are overall content in several ways. Some investors may not know that Target actually won CareerBliss's Leap award in 2011, beating 250,000 other organizations. Employees rated their organization in several areas such as work-life balance, employee benefits, relationship between co-workers and bosses, job resources, daily tasks, company culture, work environment, career opportunities and advancement, compensation, and many others. Target's employees gave the company high ratings in all categories. In fact, Target actually improved its employee happiness by 12%. Unlike at Wal-Mart, Target associates seemingly care less about compensation and more about their work environment and its perks.

Happiness at its best
Target and Costco believe that a happy work environment leads to better customer service, and ultimately, profits for the company. Furthermore, both retailers treat their employees as a long-term investment rather than a gamble. For Costco, minimizing employee compensation is not what's important to the company's growth; rather, minimizing employee turnover and maximizing employee loyalty, productivity, and knowledge of customer service excellence is the key to success. 

The award goes to Costco
Costco's employees are actually the happiest of these three companies. Not only do they enjoy their jobs, but they also enjoy how well the company treats them. Costco treats its employees as individuals and believes that everyone has the ability to learn new skills and make decisions. Costco's generous wages and benefits packages are definitely a fantastic advantage to being an employee there. Even though Costco employees earn more per hour than Wal-Mart employees, Costco employees pay about 12% in out of pocket premium for benefits such as insurance, whereas Wal-Mart employees pay 40% out of pocket. That's quite a difference! While Wal-Mart is in the hot seat with its workforce, Costco employees aren't going anywhere anytime soon.

The outcome for Wal-Mart employees
Wal-Mart executives are not planning on raising their hourly associates' wages anytime in the near future unless forced to by Congress. The company has announced that it plans on promoting 160,000 employees over the next year. For now, Wal-Mart's hourly associates can only hope to receive more hours back in their pocket as the holiday season approaches. Gaining hours back on the clock may settle the strike for a short time, giving Wal-Mart executives additional time to devise a better solution to their employees' complaints of being paid "poverty wages." Foolish investors should note that in the long term, Target and Costco are likely to benefit from their employee-friendly methods, especially when compared to Wal-Mart. Consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of how organizations stand on social issues, and this could prove a deciding factor in which of these retailers wins out over the long term.

As Wal-Mart declines, who wins?
To learn about two retailers with especially good prospects, take a look at The Motley Fool's special free report: "The Death of Wal-Mart: The Real Cash Kings Changing the Face of Retail." In it, you'll see how these two cash kings are able to consistently outperform and how they’re planning to ride the waves of retail's changing tide. You can access it by clicking here.

Offline Maroon and Gray

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That is interesting info .  Thanks for posting.
How you treat people is important.  Very important.
I shop both walmart & target, but don't interact with the employees enough to be able to detect issues.

I wonder if Walmart employee issues are more regional than nationwide?
Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.'”
― Isaac Asimov

Offline soflorattler

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I wonder if Walmart employee issues are more regional than nationwide?

In my experience, it's pretty much a result of corporate culture. They (Walmart) never experienced any of these issues when Sam Walton was alive. It wasn't until the family took over after his death that things went south for employees...

 

 

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