Walmart continues to fight over wages
Walmart has been in the headlines for weeks now regarding its associates low wages, but today Walmart continues to dig itself deeper by asking its financially strapped associates to help other financially strapped associates. It makes no sense.
A Walmart store in Canton, Ohio is holding a food drive to help aid employees in need, which raises the question, why are Walmart’s employees in need in the first place? Why isn’t the world’s largest retailer paying its employees enough to afford their basic needs, but asking its low wage associates to help their fellow coworkers with their basic needs?
While facing criticism for paying low wages, the retail giant faces hardships of its own reporting its third straight quarterly decline. Analysts claim that low-income customers have been reluctant to open their wallets.
It can be argued that it’s more than just low-income workers that are not opening their wallets at Walmart. The negativity in the headlines regarding Walmart’s questionable business decisions have been at the forefront of Black Friday discussions. Last week 117 workers in Chicago went on strike in hope their voices would be heard to demand a living wage.
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CNN Money spoke with the CEO of Walmart, Bill Simon asking for some clarification regarding Walmart’s wage disputes. The reporter asks, “With almost $17 billion in sales, why not just raise the wages and then your employees will have more money spend at Walmart!”
Bill Simon replies, “The reason we apposed it [raising minimum wage] in Washington is because it was targeted specifically at us. The discussion around minimum wage is one that this country needs to have, but that’s not the issue. The issue is not where you start, but it’s where you go to once you’ve started, the mobility. So raising the minimum wage will change the starting wage but it won’t adjust and where people can to and the career opportunities that exist in the country today. One of the reasons we that we launched a manufacturing initiative this year was to help address that. At our company you have the opportunity to enter at whatever level your capability would suggest and you have the opportunity to advance. That opportunity doesn’t exist everywhere in the country, so our efforts in U.S manufacturing is to bring back those jobs that people can advance to. I think the debate over the starting wage or the minimum wage is just a little bit shortsighted in the conversation, because it’s not where you start, it’s where you go to. Everyone starts somewhere. “
The reporter asked if Walmart would have to raise prices if the minimum wage was raised to $15 and Simon replies, “You can look at places where there is a $15 minimum wage like Australia for example and the average retail wage is $22 and a 24-pack of coke is $26.”
I think this says a lot about Simon. Being the CEO of the largest retailer in the world come with an immense amount of responsibility, and if employee’s wages were significantly raised could Walmart single handedly start and upswing of inflation essentially landing employees in the same situation they are in now?
G7 Summit guide: What it is and what leaders hope to achieve
Unless you’ve had your head buried in the sand, you’ll have seen the term ‘G7’ plastered all over the Internet this week. We’re going to give you the skinny on exactly what the G7 is and what its purpose on this planet is ─ and whether it’s a good or a bad collaboration.
Who are the G7?
The Group of Seven, or ‘G7’, may sound like a collective of pirate lords from a certain Disney smash-hit, but in reality, it’s a group of the world’s seven largest “advanced” economies ─ the powerhouses of the world, if you like.
The merry band comprises:
- The United Kingdom
- The United States
Historically, Russia was a member of the then-called ‘G8’ but found itself excluded after their ever-so-slightly illegal takeover of Crimea back in 2014.
Since 1977, the European Union has also been involved in some capacity with the G7 Summit. The Union is not recognised as an official member, but gradually, as with all Europe-linked affairs, the Union has integrated itself into the conversation and is now included in all political discussions on the annual summit agenda.
When was the ‘G’ formed?
Back in 1975, when the world was reeling from its very first oil shock and the subsequent financial fallout that came with it, the heads of state and government from six of the leading industrial countries had a face-to-face meeting at the Chateau de Rambouillet to discuss the global economy, its trajectory, and what they could do to address the economic turmoil that reared its ugly head throughout the 70s.
Why does the G7 exist?
At this very first summit ─ the ‘G6’ summit ─, the leaders adopted a 15-point communiqué, the Declaration of Rambouillet, and agreed to continuously meet once a year moving forward to address the problems of the day, with a rotating Presidency. One year later, Canada was welcomed into the fold, and the ‘G6’ became seven and has remained so ever since ─ Russia’s inclusion and exclusion not counted.
The group, as previously mentioned, was born in the looming shadow of a financial crisis, but its purpose is more significant than just economics. When leaders from the group meet, they discuss and exchange ideas on a broad range of issues, including injustice around the world, geopolitical matters, security, and sustainability.
It’s worth noting that, while the G7 may be made up of mighty nations, the bloc is an informal one. So, although it is considered an important annual event, declarations made during the summit are not legally binding. That said, they are still very influential and worth taking note of because it indicates the ambitions and outlines the initiatives of these particularly prominent leading nations.
Where is the 2021 G7 summit?
This year, the summit will be held in the United Kingdom deep in the southwest of England, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson hosting his contemporaries in the quaint Cornish resort of Carbis Bay near St Ives in Cornwall.
What will be discussed this year?
After almost two years of remote communication, this will be the first in-person G7 summit since the novel Coronavirus first took hold of the globe, and Britain wants “leaders to seize the opportunity to build back better from coronavirus, uniting to make the future fairer, greener, and more prosperous.”
The three-day summit, running from Friday to Sunday, will see the seven leaders discussing a whole host of shared challenges, ranging from the pandemic and vaccine development and distribution to the ongoing global fight against climate change through the implementation of sustainable norms and values.
According to the UK government, the attendees will also be taking a look at “ensuring that people everywhere can benefit from open trade, technological change, and scientific discovery.”