Wal-Mart sets up Thanksgiving food drive -- for its own employees

This sign was posted at a Wal-Mart in Ohio.
This sign was posted at a Wal-Mart in Ohio.
(Organization United for Respect / Facebook)

A Wal-Mart in Ohio has placed bins in its store for a food drive. But the drive isn’t meant to benefit just anyone. It’s to ask employees to donate food to coworkers who can’t afford to have Thanksgiving.

The sign on the bins read “Please donate food items here so associates in need can enjoy Thanksgiving dinner.” After a photo of the sign was posted on the Internet, those already claiming the company has notoriously low employee wages used it as another reason to make some noise.

A group called Organization United for Respect (OUR Wal-Mart), a group that campaigns for a better work environment and better wages for Wal-Mart employees, posted the picture on its Facebook page. It asked people to “Like this if you think Wal-Mart should pay us enough that we can afford to buy our own Thanksgiving dinners!” The photo had been “Liked” 945 times.

“This is like asking the poor to help feed the poor,” wrote Facebook user Todd Jones. “What a slap in the face. It’s a shame that they give to charities, but they aren’t able to just give more money to their associates.”


According to protesters who marched for better wages during a Wal-Mart protest earlier this month in Paramount, the company has about 825,000 employees who make less than $25,000 a year. Federal Poverty Guidelines list $23,550 as the poverty line for a family of four living in California.

Kory Lundberg, a Wal-Mart spokesman, told the L.A. Times’ Tiffany Hsu that the company has seen these protests “over and over again,” even though Wal-Mart offers quarterly performance-based bonuses to employees and allows them access to retirement, healthcare benefits and merchandise discounts.

Do you think it’s inapprorpriate for Wal-Mart to ask its employees to help coworkers in need?

Want more water cooler-worthy food news? Follow me on Twitter: @Jenn_Harris_


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