A 24-year Walmart associate Mary Pat Tifft, started the ptition after the reailer's announcement that it would open stores at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, according to Huffington Post. So far, more than 30,000 people have signed an online petition on MoveOn.org asking Walmart not to make its employees work on Thanksgiving.
Steven Restivo, director of corporate affairs of Walmart stores, responded to Walmart opening on Thanksgiving Day with the following:
"We appreciate our associates for everything they do to serve our customers during this busy shopping season and every day throughout the year. Most of our stores are open 24 hours and, historically, much of our Black Friday preparations have been done on Thanksgiving, which is not unusual in the retail industry. Last year, our highest customer traffic during the Black Friday weekend was during the 10 p.m. hour on Thursday and our associates helped to provide a great shopping experience," said Restivo.
Restivo said Walmart expects to have more than one million associates working throughout the holiday weekend and excited about Black Friday plans. "This is the Super Bowl for retailers and we’re ready," said Restivo. "Our associates care about providing a great customer experience on Black Friday and we’re confident that’s what customers will have at Walmart this year."
In regards to a potential strike or walkout at the Marple Walmart stores, Restivo said, "I can’t speak to what may or may not happen at an individual store, but we’re prepared to have a great event and we’ll be open and ready to take care of our customers."
Restivo added, "Walmart has some of the best jobs in retail – our pay and benefits typically meet or exceed what’s offered by the majority of our competitors; we promote from within; our turnover rate is below the industry average and our associate satisfaction scores have trended higher over the past few years. We have more than a quarter million associates that have worked for us for more than 10 years."