The United Food and Commercial Workers Union – advocate for workers in retail food, meatpacking and poultry, food processing and manufacturing, and retail stores across the country – will announce the findings of a poll conducted by pollster David Meriman of Lake Research, Wed., July 21.
Merriman who surveyed communities in Baltimore, Washington D.C., and Philadelphia found that residents are welcoming to big box retailers in their neighborhoods as long as workers will be provided a living wage.
A living wage is the hourly compensation necessary to sustain food, clothing and shelter for an individual or family. The minimum wage is the lowest legal limit that an employer can pay its employees, determined by the federal government.
According to Casie Yoder, a representative for UFCW which also runs the website wakeupwalmart.com, big box retailers like Wal-Mart, on average, pay most employees below retail industry standards. “It’s not necessarily anti Wal-Mart so much as it is, well okay if Wal-Mart or any other big box wants to come in to a community, the community has certain standards and expectations” says Yoder.
Wal-Mart has expansions plans in the Charles Village area in Baltimore and on New York Avenue and Bladensburg Road in the District.