At the Walmart in Paramount, Calif., near Los Angeles, about 600 protesters, including an estimated 100 Walmart workers, turned out Friday morning. In Hanover, Md., 400 store employees, union workers, activists and other supporters showed up at a Walmart Supercenter Friday.In Pittsburgh, about 130 protesters showed up at the Walmart store at the Waterworks Mall. One Pittsburgh, helped to organize the protest here. From their press release:
In October, over 100 Walmart workers went on strike at 12 different stores in 10 separate states, including Walmart warehouse workers in CA and IL. They were protesting intimidation and retaliation from Walmart managers as the workers sought to organize for a fair wage. Walmart intensified its retaliation in order to silence the workers. Rather than cow to the bullying tactics, Walmart associates across the nation are standing up and walking out. Walmart workers on both coasts have already walked out on strike as of November 19thand 20th, in protest over Walmart's scramble to scare associates into not taking action on Black Friday. One Pittsburgh, community organizations and concerned shoppers will join with the workers on Black Friday, taking a stand against Walmart’s bullying and a stand for fair wages and workers’ rights.
Regular folks throughout the country are wising up to the tactics used by big corporations to keep profits and CEO salaries high and keep working families down. Walmart is one of the richest corporations in the world, and the Walton Family has a combined wealth that equals 40% of the rest of America combined. Yet many of their workers cannot afford to take care of their own families, and are forced to use state funded healthcare and food stamps. Workers, taxpayers and shoppers are tired of Walmart’s greed and on Black Friday they’ll be taking a stand,Here are some photos from that protest (courtesy of Joy Sabl):
Today, is Small Business Saturday. If you don't like the economics and social ramifications of big box stores like Walmart, you can support locally-owned businesses by shopping there today (and the rest of the year as well). To make your shopping easier in the city of Pittsburgh, Councilman Bill Peduto sponsored legislation in City Council that will suspend meter enforcement citywide today for "Small Business Saturday."
One new store you may want to check out is the East End Book Exchange -- a "bookstore committed to maintaining an active enthusiasm for books and print culture. We offer a well-curated selection of used titles, along with new works by your favorite local authors." They're located at 4754 Liberty Avenue -- right in the middle of Bloomfield. (This is an unpaid plug, folks.)
So, check out some local stores and keep your money in town!