With over 11,000 locations worldwide and more than 2.2 million employees, Walmart is the largest retailer in the world. Worth over $258 billion dollars, this family owned company is both revered and loathed by citizens across the globe. The large scope of Walmart’s dominance on global commerce has created widespread criticism. From their labor and import practices, to their effect on small-town America, Walmart is a highly profitable and highly controversial company for many reasons.
9. Walmart practices predatory pricing
Walmart promises its customers low prices. But how low is too low? The company has been accused of predatory pricing numerous times; with claims that Walmart is purposely selling it’s products at an extremely low price in order to drive competitors out of the market. Lawsuits filed both in the United States and abroad have for the majority ended with rulings for Walmart or settlements out of court. However, in the case of generic prescription drug costs, Walmart has been forced to charge a competitive price in eleven states.
8. Walmart uses sweat shops
It comes as a surprise to no one that the majority of apparel sold at Walmart comes from overseas sweat shops. Many American clothing retailers purchase their goods from these manufacturers. However, Walmart is notorious for its lack of transparency over foreign labor. While the company claims to have strict standards for its manufacturers, they refuse to release any of their audits or reports. Additionally, inhumane conditions have been recorded at several of their overseas suppliers, including reports of child labor. In 2013, a commercial building housing one of Walmart’s garment manufacturers collapsed, killing nearly 1200 people. Walmart refused to provide compensation to victims’ families.
7. Walmart also has inhumane working conditions in their stores
Lawsuits filed in several states have accused Wal-Mart of forcing store associates to work off-the-clock and without proper breaks. Thousands of employees have reported that they were coerced into working once they had clocked out at the end of the shift, or face the risk of disciplinary action or even termination. Additionally, several reports have surfaced alleging overnight workers being locked in the stores during the shifts. This has caused great concern for worker safety, as there could be delayed response time to emergency or weather relation situations.