Walmart employees and protesters are expected to launch protests in 15 cities across the country today, in what organizers say will be the largest protest since last November. The organized protest comes two weeks after ten Walmart employees were arrested at a rally in Washington, D.C.
Employees across the country have been protesting the company’s unfair wages and treatment of workers. In DC this August, workers called for an annual minimum wage of $25,000 and for the company to offer full-time jobs. Ten current and former employees were arrested during the D.C. rally.
The company, with an annual revenue of nearly $450 billion and a global workforce of over 2 million, is notorious for claims of lower worker wages and poor treatment of its employees. The company has also admitted to combatting employee attempts to unionize by telling employees that they could lose benefits if they join a union.
Thursday’s protests are expected to include a march in Los Angeles and a rally outside San Francisco’s Four Seasons hotel, where Yahoo CEO and Walmart board member Marissa Mayer has a penthouse apartment, according to The Guardian. Other protests are expected in Washington, D.C. and New York, where a petition will be delivered to the headquarters of Williams Capital Group. Chairman Christopher Williams is also a Walmart board member.
In June, the company fired 20 workers who participated in strikes. Spokesmen for Walmart have insisted that the workers were fired because they violated the company’s attendance policy by leaving work to protest, and not because they participated in a strike.