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Time and a Half for Working Thanksgiving? Not at Walmart

Employees will get modest store discount instead for working shifts this holiday weekend
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 27, 2019 9:40 AM CST
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Walmart employees gather outside the store for a reopening event on Nov. 14, 2019, in El Paso, Texas.   (Mark Lambie/The El Paso Times via AP)

(Newser) – Walmart will be operating at regular hours this Thanksgiving and Black Friday, but unlike retailers Target and Amazon, it won't be offering employees paid time and a half. In fact, as the Guardian reports, Walmart workers won't get any extra pay. Instead, they'll receive a 10% discount on "most" grocery items through Jan. 3 (milk, booze, cigarettes, and gas don't qualify), while employees who work all of their scheduled shifts between Wednesday and Saturday will receive an additional 15% discount to be used on Dec. 5 or Dec. 6. "We hope you know just HOW MUCH WE APPRECIATE all that you do," reads a company flier announcing the discount. Business Insider reports employees working on Thanksgiving will also get a free dinner.

Per the Guardian, a rep explains Walmart "simplified our paid time-off policies in 2016 to combine vacation, holiday, sick, and personal time into one bucket" and that "associates can now cash out any unused PTO at the end of the year." The policy is drawing attention this year with the release of Dear Walmart, a documentary relaying how retail workers struggle with low pay, workplace intimidation, and erratic scheduling. One Walmart employee from Los Angeles describes having to donate blood and plasma just to make ends meet, per the American Prospect. Walmart opted not to hire seasonal workers in most stores this year, as in the last two years, with current employees picking up the additional holiday hours. (Read more Walmart stories.)

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