Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Wal-Mart - Profiting off Poverty

Wal-Mart: Profiting off Poverty*

Wal-Mart founder, Sam Walton, found a way to profit off of poverty. The first Wal-Mart stores were located in poor and working class areas, attracting customers with their low prices. The only problem was that in order for business to grow, there had to be more poverty.

This dilemma was solved by creating low paying jobs. On average, a Wal-Mart employee makes just over 8 dollars an hour. If they want health insurance, then they must pay more than a third of the premium. As a result, many Wal-Mart employees can only afford to shop at Wal-Mart; therefore, the corporation further profits from the exploitation of its workers.

Wal-Mart employees have been fired for joining unions and the corporation repeatedly violates overtime laws, often encouraging employees to clock out and keep working. Wal-Mart has also been known to discriminate against women in pay and promotion.

What can you do to help?
Stop shopping at Wal-Mart.
Take their power away by taking your money elsewhere.

Write to Senator Maurice Hinchey
about Wal-Mart workers-rights abuses:
Office of Rep. Hinchey
City Hall, Third Floor
16 James Street
Middletown, NY 10940

For more information on Wal-Mart's violations, visit:

*Source: "Down and Out in Discount America" by Liza Featherstone

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