Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) sewer problems in three states seem to have reached fever pitch seen by the move to lay off more than 2,200 staff as the giant retailer moves to carry out repairs in the next six months. The announced shut down affects stores in Texas, California, Florida and Oklahoma.
Employees are taking issue with the fact that they were notified just hours before the stores closed down. ABC News reports that no plumbing permits have been issued to indicate there are plans for repairs, further arousing debate why the staff was laid off.
The shutdown will see both part-time and full-time employees being put on a two months paid leave during which they can look for opportunities in other Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) locations. The giant retailer has affirmed that any full-time employee who does not get another Walmart job by June 19 will be eligible for a severance pay.
City officials in Texas were held up in talks with the giant retailer for the better part of last week having seen 422 residents rendered jobless in what the company attributes to pervasive plumbing problems. However, there are reports indicating that the retailer opted to close down the stores in retaliation for employees demanding better wages and benefits.
The closure of the Pico Rivera store has mostly been attributed to recent resentment by employees who have been aggressive in pushing for better pay having held one of the first black Friday protests in 2012. The closure in the area is set to affect 295 full-time employees, as well as 248 part-time staffers.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) on its defense affirmed the locations had to be closed because they needed extensive repairs. The retailer recently announced plans to raise its minimum hourly wage to at least $9 an hour as part of a $1 billion investment for better pay.