Big-box retailer Walmart is facing serious allegations that it illegally fired several employees throughout the nation, in addition to intimidating others through discipline and threats, simply because the workers participated in protests. Official reports from the National Labor Relations Board show that the company violated employee rights by enforcing unfair rules after the workers participated in protected strikes and protests. Employees are irate that they suffered from wrongful termination and other illegal acts, but Walmart representatives say they are eager to have their side of the story made public.
News reports show that the protests, some of which were held in Florida, occurred during 2012 and were backed by a union-supported group known as OUR Walmart. That group advocates against alleged wage abuses perpetrated by the company, which reportedly pays most of its workers less than $25,000 annually. Walmart leaders say they will happily present the ‘facts’ in the case to a judge in the coming months, as the employer believes its workers were illegally shirking their responsibilities. The employer contends that the workers were simply walking away from their scheduled shifts.
Even though the workers’ activities should have been protected by the National Labor Relations Act, 19 workers nationwide were fired after the strikes and protests, many of which occurred around Black Friday in 2012. In addition, Walmart officials are accused of illegally firing and disciplining workers in Florida for their participation in those activities. Further, the company allegedly perpetrated other threats and wrongful termination against Florida workers who participated in other protected activities that have not been specified.
Employees have the right to protest unsafe or unfair working conditions. The National Labor Relations Act lists specific activities that are protected for American workers. If Walmart fired employees because of their participation in protected activities, the company could be required to pay financial damages and other types of penalties. No worker should be forced to endure unacceptable working conditions without voicing an opinion. Victims of such workplace discrimination may benefit from the services of a qualified employment attorney, who can help them learn more about their legal rights and options.
Source: Fox News Latino, “Walmart Illegally Disciplined Or Fired Employees Who Protested Against The Company, Feds Say” No author given, Jan. 16, 2014