Grocery Workers Union Urges Walmart to Continue Campaign of Penance;
Retailers Youth Program Donation Dwarfed by Summer Jobs Provided by City Supermarkets
WESTBURY, NEW YORK (06/10/2011)(readMedia)-- In response to Walmarts announcement of yet another in a series of high profile contributions, the State largest grocery workers Union urged Walmart to continue its campaign of penance and hopes it will soon find redemption by agreeing to conditions that would make its entrance into New York City less offensive to New Yorkers.
"New York City residents and elected officials are very smart and understand their is no coincidence between Walmarts recent large contributions and their political style campaign to open stores in New York City, " said Patrick Purcell, spokesperson for United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500. " However, we should all welcome this money with no strings attached and continue to hope that this is perhaps Walmart seeking penance for the economic sins it continues to commit against workers, small business's, women's groups and communities. They should continue their penance by sitting down with the appropriate people and discuss real reform that could make them less objectionable to millions of New Yorkers. If not, this is money well spent and welcomed, but it is still nothing more than Walmart putting lipstick on a Bentonville pig." Purcell stated.
While Walmarts donation is its first to help city kids find summer jobs, Supermarket chains Stop and Shop, Shop Rite, Pathmark, Fairway, Key Food, Gristedes and many others supermarkets have been providing New York City young adults with summer jobs for decades. "The difference between these employers and Walmart is that they do not need some big press event or a picture with the Mayor or some ulterior motive to do the right thing. They have provided tens of thousands of New Yorkers with summer jobs that pay good wages and benefits for decades," Purcell explained. "Many of those students work at these supermarkets while they go to school and many often continue on towards a career in retail food," Purcell stated. "When the Mayor is done with Walmarts press event, we would like to cordially invite him to tour a one of our Unionized employers so he can thank those who seek little attention, try to do the right thing every day and provide his constituents with a living wage and quality standard of living," Purcell concluded.
UFCW Local 1500 is New York State's largest grocery workers Union representing 23,000 grocery workers throughout the metropolitan New York area.