Walmart Keeps Our Communities in Poverty
Unfortunately, Walmart jobs keep our communities in poverty—wages average just $8.81/hour. A full-time Walmart associate earns less than 70 percent of the 2013 federal poverty line for a family of four.
At the same time, workers at Walmart struggle to get the hours they need to make ends meet. Nearly 40% of African-American part-time retail workers would like to work full-time if they could get the hours.
People of color are underrepresented in management jobs at Walmart
Walmart’s low wages are not good for any workers, but minorities are disproportionately represented in low-paying positions. While people of color made up 37% of Walmart’s US workforce in 2012, only 27% of first and mid-level officials and managers were minorities.
Walmart is a Job Killer in Our Communities
Walmart store openings destroy almost three local jobs for every two they create by reducing retail employment by an average of 2.7 percent in every county they enter.
Walmart’s warehouses employ contracted workers, many of them minorities, who face harassment and intimidation at work, wage and hour violations, and unsafe working conditions. In Southern California’s Inland Empire, the majority of logistics workers are Latinos, and the majority of warehouse workers in the Chicago area are Latino and African-American. In Southern California and Illinois in fall 2011, Walmart’s warehouse workers filed class action wage theft lawsuits against Walmart’s logistics contractors. The California Department of Labor issued citations and fines to Walmart logistics contractors for labor violations. And in November 2012, Walmart was named as a defendant in the lawsuit.
In February 2009, Walmart paid $17.5 million to settle a class-action lawsuit in which plaintiffs claimed that Walmart discriminated against African-American truck driver applicants. The case was brought by Daryal Nelson of Mississippi in 2004 and applied to applicants at Walmart distribution centers in Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and North Carolina.
Walmart and the Waltons have disproportionately supported politicians who vote the wrong way on civil rights.
The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights evaluated the 112th Congress based on votes including misguided attempts to protect voter ID laws, attacks on worker rights, the Ryan budget, and extending Bush-era tax cuts. A comparison of this scorecard with the Walmart PAC and Waltons’ contributions from 2005 to 2012 shows that, among candidates with scores, the Walmart PAC and Waltons favored candidates who failed to protect civil rights. In fact, 85% of the Waltons’ contributions went to candidates with scores of 25 below, out of 100.
Supporting voter suppression and stand your ground laws through ALEC
Walmart and the Walton Family Foundation were a longtime members of the controversial American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). ALEC is infamous for promoting legislation that advances a conservative ideological agenda and benefits its members at the expense of everyone else.
ALEC helped propagate the notorious “Stand Your Ground” law linked to the killing of Trayvon Martin in Florida in February 2012. The law, which initially shielded Martin’s shooter from arrest in weeks following the killing, came out of an ALEC working committee co-chaired by a Walmart executive in 2005. 
Other legislation supported by the right-wing group and its members includes the recent round of voter suppression laws introduced in 27 states. Supporters of discriminatory voter ID laws claim they want to reduce voter fraud, but such fraud almost never actually occurs, and never in amounts large enough to impact the result of elections. These laws have a disproportionate impact on the poor, the elderly, and people of color.
In May 2012, amid intense public pressure, Walmart withdrew from ALEC. However, there is no evidence that the Walton Family Foundation has withdrawn from ALEC, despite the fact that civil rights leaders and others have called on them to do so.
 “What’s At Stake.” Walmart Chicago. http://www.walmartchicago.com/whats-at-stake/, accessed 1.27.12.
 US Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, Table 17: Employed and unemployed full-and part-time wate and salary workers by intermediate industry, sex, race. Annual average 2011.
 Neumark, David, Junfu Zhang, and Stephen Ciccarella, January 2007. “The Effects of Wal-Mart on Local Labor Markets.” Institute for the Study of Labor Discussion Paper #2545, University of Bonn. papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=958704
 inthesetimes.com/working/entry/12159/california_walmart_warehouses_feel_the_heat/; www.inthesetimes.com/working/entry/7009/walmart_warehouse_workers_file_class_action_lawsuit/; www.dir.ca.gov/DIRNews/2011/IR2011-24.html
 Political contributions data provided by the Center for Responsive Politics. https://www.opensecrets.org/