Unions campaign against Walmartisation

August 28, 2008 by: admin

The Wal-Mart chain of discount stores has become a US, and international, business success story. But the flip side is demonstrated by the term ‘Walmatisation’ which has become a rallying call to those opposed to the use of casual labour, on low wages and without any social benefits.

Local union Saccawu is accusing leading SA retailers of following this trend and they are campaigning strongly against it.

As consumers we would always welcome low prices, but should we be paying more attention to the business practices of retailers? If employers don’t provide their employees pension and medical benefits who will end up supporting them? The State – which means us taxpayers!

Should South Africans be calling on retailers to continue to provide stable incomes and benefits to their workers – for the good of the country as a whole? Or do local retailers have to work with the same rules as their global competitors – for fear of the international players opening stores in SA? We are in the period of globalisation after all!

What are your opinions on this topic? We welcome your contributions via email to db@pencil.co.za for our Letters to the Editor section

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