Monday, August 22, 2005

Wal-Mart Hard Sell in Big Apple

The Los Angeles Times has an interesting piece detailing the various roadblocks Wal-Mart is facing as it tries to enter New York City. The newest is the recently passed Health Care Security Act which mandates that grocery stores with over 35 employees pay their workers health insurance benefits comparable to those of unionized stores. Considering that the major cost in running a supermarket is labor, the bill seeks to level the playing field by preventing big box retailers from running unionized shops out of town with their paltry pay and benefits. As Paul Sonn of the Brennen Center remarked:

... look, we just don't want to compete around how little healthcare we can provide our workers. Around the country, Wal-Mart has been a leading firm putting pressure on [others]. It's not that they don't contribute at all; they just contribute at a lower level.
Read the whole thing.