What do you think – Wal-Mart in Washington?

Thursday night, RespectDC.org held an ANC only screening of “Wal-Mart; the High Cost of Low Price.” I’m working with a commissioner in 8D to have a screening in Ward 8 to share the  film with the community. I can say, in a room of about 30, after the movie, only one person felt like Wal-Mart should come to the District. The movie profiles several communities across the nation after Wal-Mart joined the ranks of their local employers. They discuss everything from the way women are treated (see the RespectDC.org LINK with a background for the Senate hearing tomorrow), unionization, customer safety and employee healthcare.

Here’s an excerpt from the film: 

It stood out to me that Wal-Mart has the highest number of employees on public aid programs – medicaid or some form of food stamps.

In the spirit of providing as much information as possible, after the screening, Wal-Mart volunteers were standing outside of the room passing out information disputing some of the claims. Wal Mart supported Ron Galloway’s film “Why Wal-Mart Works & Why That Makes Some People Crazy.” Here’s a clip of a CNBC report with the “Dueling Directors” (my term not theirs).

Both videos are a bit dated and RespectDC.org is hosting a current day case study of sorts to determine if and how things have changed. I’ll post more details on time, date and location as they become available.

The company sponsored website (which I got from the aforementioned volunteers)  walmartwashingtondc.com provides a bit of information on the current status of the DC locations. The size of each store will be between 80,000 and 120,000 square feet, with the first four stores located on:

  • 801 New Jersey Avenue NW.
  • Georgia and Missouri Avenue NW.
  • Capitol Heights (East Capitol Street and 58th)
  • New York Avenue and Bladensburg Road

So what do you think? Is Wal-mart good for Washington?


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