Washington, D.C., Tells Walmart to Pay Up Or Get Out
The nation's largest employer, Walmart, is notorious for its poor working conditions, discrimination, and union busting. As its stores spread through the suburbs, small businesses closed and wages dropped or stagnated. Walmart's newest shameless strategy seeks to bring its stores to impoverished urban areas, some of which are considered "food deserts." Walmart claims that its stores will bring good jobs and even other businesses to such areas, and, despite a lack of evidence, promote a healthier diet. Although some liberals and conservatives have shown support for Walmart's plan, Washington, D.C., chose to stand up to Walmart's unethical labor practices, voting to pass a living wage law that would require Walmart and other non-unionized large retailers to pay their workers at least 12.50 an hour — 150% of the local minimum wage. In response, Walmart threatened to back out of its plan to open a store in the struggling Skyland area, and possibly other locations in the city.