by: Jeffrey Dorfman – Contributor
originally posted on Forbes
December 11, 2014
Walmart is the employer that unions and many workers-rights advocates love to hate. Yet, when Walmart opens up new stores, they typically receive thousands of applicants competing for the few hundred jobs available. If Walmart is as horrible employer as often claimed, why do so many people want to work there? The answer is that the thousands who want to work at Walmart know more about working at Walmart than those continually protesting against it.
Many misconceptions about Walmart’s pay and benefits are based on data that people have inferred from partial information that is available publicly, not from a full and complete picture of their compensation package. (Full disclosure: I received funding from the National Retail Federation Foundation to study wages in the retail industry. As part of that study, I received data from Walmart on their pay practices. However, Walmart had no role in the writing of this column.)
Here are the facts about working at Walmart. The average hourly associate has a total compensation package of $14.50 per hour. Full-time hourly associates make an average of $12.94 per hour in wages. On top of the pay, hourly associates receive quarterly bonuses based on store performance that average $580 per year. Employees are eligible for health insurance and, if they choose to sign up for it, Walmart pays 75 percent of the premium cost.
Hourly associates all can contribute to a 401(k) retirement plan and Walmart matches employee contributions for the first 6 percent of each employee’s pay. Employees can also buy company stock and Walmart will match those purchases with shares equal to 15 percent of those purchased by the employees. Finally, employees all receive an employee discount of 10 percent off on purchases at Walmart.
All of these benefits together can add up to the equivalent of $4.50 per hour, meaning that an average full-time hourly associate could have total compensation of about $17.40 per hour or about $35,000 per year.
In addition to these figures, it is worth noting that annual raises for hourly associates have averaged more than 3 percent per year over the past eight years which includes the recent recession when raises for most workers have been few and far between. About 160,000 associates get promoted each year with 7,000 hourly associates entering management ranks annually. More than three-quarters of all Walmart store managers started as hourly associates.
Does all this make Walmart a worker’s paradise? That depends on how much you are making in your current job (if you have one) and what benefits come with that current job position. A significant number of workers make less than $15 per hour in total compensation, so there are lots of people who would see Walmart’s pay package as a step up. The enormous number of applications Walmart receives for each new store opening seems to indicate that is true: lots of people want to work at Walmart.
Given all this, why are so many people so deeply invested in fighting Walmart store openings and complaining about their pay policies? Several reasons seem to be in play. First, much of the protesting is organized by unions who are actually much more interested in gaining the opportunity to collect union dues from Walmart’s workers than they are in raising the wages of the people working at Walmart. Second, many people honestly complain about pay at Walmart because they have been misled about what Walmart really pays. They assume almost all the associates are making minimum wage or slightly above it. Hopefully, these people will read this column and adjust their behavior to reflect the truth about what Walmart pays.
In an economy where millions of people are still unemployed or underemployed, demonizing any employer is probably a bad idea. It gets much worse when the demonizing is based on lies and distortions. The data show that Walmart offers attractive pay and benefits to its employees. People who find those offers unsatisfactory should find another place to work rather than spending their energy complaining about jobs that hundreds of thousands of people find rewarding.read more
New park, partially made possible through a generous grant from Walmart, to open in 2015 and anchor southern trail
PHILADELPHIA, PA (June 26, 2014 ) – Mayor Michael A. Nutter and the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation (DRWC) today unveiled a design for Pier 68, the next new pier park on the Delaware waterfront, expected to open in mid-2015 in South Philadelphia. The pier park will serve as the southern trailhead for the Central Delaware trail, which is in development in segments from Pier 70 Boulevard north to Penn Treaty Park. Pier 68 provides a southern bookend to a future wetlands park and trail segment, which is anchored at the north by the Pier 53, another new park slated to open to the public next month. Pier 68, once a shipping pier for importing Cuban sugar, will offer areas for passive recreation with hammock style seating, as well as opportunities for fishing and up-close observation of the highly tidal nature of the Delaware River. The $1.7 million pier park was funded through support from the William Penn Foundation, the city of Philadelphia capital budget, the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Wells Fargo, and Walmart. Pier 68 was acquired in 2012 with funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources using the expertise and resources of the Natural Lands Trust, a regional land conservancy. The pier is adjacent to Pier 70 shopping center and Walmart generously contributed $200,000 to help fund its construction.
View additional renderings of the park here: Pier 68 Renderings
Mayor Michael A. Nutter said, “Piece by piece, we are building the framework for long-term public access and high quality parks and trails along the Delaware River. I’m proud that this will be the third public pier park we’ve created since the founding of the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation in 2009, and I’m looking forward to opening the park to the public next year.”
In addition to Mayor Michael A. Nutter, speakers included: Councilman Mark Squilla; Alan Greenberger, Deputy Mayor for Commerce and Economic Development; Matthew Karnell, Director, CFA Programs Division/Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development; Claire Bruno, Regional General Manager, Walmart Stores; and Dr. James Moylan, President of Pennsport Civic Association. Tom Corcoran, President of DRWC, served as master of ceremonies.
Julie Murphy, Senior Vice President of Northeast Region, Walmart Stores, said, “Walmart is committed to our local communities and we’re thrilled to be here today to partner with DRWC and the city to help unveil an exciting design for a pier park that will benefit the Philadelphia communities we love serving. The relaxing public space will provide an amenity to our customers and employees, and attract more visitors to this part of the riverfront.”
Studio Bryan Hanes led the design of Pier 68 with significant input from the local community. The finalized design features the following public amenities:
- An entrance deck with wood paving, seating, and site furnishings that register water elevation. Located just off the future Central Delaware trail extension, this space will serve as a resting spot for those using the trail and as a place where shopping center visitors can quickly experience the Pier Park.
- A collection of native trees that begin to conceal the parking lot and traffic to the west. These trees will serve as a threshold, marking that visitors have crossed into a new riverside environment.
- A Picnic Grove where a gravel walking surface and a combination of furnishings and trees will create a space to rest and enjoy the shade.
- A 4.5’ deep aquatic cut into the pier surface allowing water to filter up through the lower wood deck and reveal the semidiurnal tidal activity of the Delaware River. Filled with native, aquatic plants, and crossed with a simple rope and cable bridge structure, this space will become a focal point for educators and curious visitors. Students will have the opportunity to observe and learn about the Delaware’s changes in water elevation and what this means for vegetation, fish and wildlife populations.
- An angled lawn for lounging and sun-bathing accompanied by a long linear bench for seating
- A water-side walk and the open pier terminus will support a variety of events and activities such as recreational fishing or gathering to watch holiday fireworks.
Thomas Corcoran, President of DRWC said, “Pier 68 is an important next step in weaving together parks and trails with high-quality development along the South Philadelphia waterfront. These new pier parks will frame a beautiful wetlands area that will not only bring South Philadelphia much needed green space but spur development on adjacent parcels in the coming years.”
DRWC is a 501(c)(3) created in January 2009, exclusively for the benefit of the City of Philadelphia and its citizens. The fundamental purpose of DRWC is to design, develop and manage the central Delaware River waterfront in Philadelphia. DRWC is transforming the waterfront into a vibrant destination for recreational, cultural, and commercial activities for the residents and visitors of Philadelphia. For more information, please visit www.delawareriverwaterfront.com.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) helps people around the world save money and live better – anytime and anywhere – in retail stores, online and through their mobile devices. Each week, more than 250 million customers and members visit our 10,994 stores under 71 banners in 27 countries and ecommerce websites in 10 countries. With fiscal year 2014 sales of approximately $473 billion, Walmart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting http://corporate.walmart.com, on Facebook at http://facebook.com/walmart and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/walmart. For more information about Walmart in Philadelphia visit www.walmartphiladelphia.com.
The Walmart Foundation will award Klein JCC a $50,000 Grant for it’s “Solutions to Senior Hunger Program”
PLACE: Klein JCC (10100 Jamison Avenue in Northeast Philadelphia)
DATE: Wednesday, April 23
Todd Wilson, Market Manager for area Walmart Stores, will announce a $50,000 grant from the Walmart Foundation to Klein JCC in support of the JCC’s “Solutions to Senior Hunger Program.” Wilson will present an oversized check to JCC President & CEO Andre Krug, JCC officers and senior member beneficiaries. Walmart volunteers also will be helping to serve lunch to the Klein JCC’s senior members.
“Thanks to the generosity and support from the Walmart Foundation we now have additional financial resources needed to expand our services and feed more of our seniors in need in the community,” states Krug.
The Klein JCC’s Home Delivered and Congregate Meals Program currently prepares and delivers close to 120,000 congregate or home delivered meals annually to homebound and independent seniors in Philadelphia, Bucks and Montgomery Counties who cannot shop or cook for themselves. It also features Cook ForA Friend which is largely dependent on charitable groups affiliated with synagogues, churches and human services organizations, who cook meals which are then packaged by volunteers and frozen for delivery.
Walmart’s commitment to hunger relief is part of a five-year $2-billion pledge made in 2010 to “fight
hunger together” in the United States. Since 2010, Walmart has partnered locally with the Klein JCC to support its work with its Congregate and Home Delivered Meals Program and to construct an on-site greenhouse to grow and produce food to provide thousands of additional meals a year for homebound seniors in Philadelphia, Bucks and Montgomery Counties. Last year, Walmart gave more than $19-million to Pennsylvania charities and non-profits, including many within the Philadelphia region. For more information on Walmart visit www.WalmartPhiladelphia.com.
COVERAGE CORDIALLY INVITED.
For Further Media Information:
Stu Coren, ROSEN COREN AGENCY, 215-741-2003
Kera Armstrong, CEISLER MEDIA & ISSUE ADVOCACY, 215-735-6760
The Free Library of Philadelphia’s flagship literacy program continues its 2014 season with dramatic vignettes from Temple University and a debut musical performance by students from the Curtis Institute of Music.
PHILADELPHIA, February 5, 2014—While Philadelphia kicked off the 12th season of its annual One Book, One Philadelphia program on January 22, the Free Library welcomed special guest Kevin Powers, author of the 2014 featured reading selection, The Yellow Birds¸ for his first official author appearance on February 5 at the Parkway Central Library.
The evening began with opening remarks by Free Library of Philadelphia President and Director Siobhan A. Reardon, who recognized the lead sponsor of this year’s program, Walmart, in addition to primary sponsors the Field Foundation, the Lenfest Foundation, Ann and Tom Morris, and PECO. Reardon then invited Marie Field, Chair of One Book, One Philadelphia, to speak. Field emphasized how One Book connects the city and strengthens our communities through the shared act of reading.
“This year, One Book, One Philadelphia will examine the harsh reality of war and the struggles that so many of our young soldiers face upon their return home,” said Reardon. “These are powerful and important conversations that we all should be having. As such, I encourage everyone in Philadelphia to read The Yellow Birds, join in the conversation, and participate in as many of the thought-provoking One Book events as possible.”
“We are very appreciative of the longevity and strength of this great partnership between Walmart and The Free Library of Philadelphia,” said Rick Phillips, Human Resources Market Manager for Walmart. “Over the past four years, Walmart has hosted lively online discussions for the community, our associates have volunteered for the program, and our stores have featured the annual One Book selections for sale. We have also committed over $350,000 over this time period to ensure the program’s continued success.”
In addition to a special appearance by Powers, the event featured a screening of vignettes from In Conflict, a critically acclaimed drama drawn from interviews with Iraq War veterans and adapted by Temple University professor Douglas C. Wager from a book by award-winning journalist Yvonne Latty. The program concluded with a debut performance of an original musical composition inspired by The Yellow Birds, written by Alyssa Weinberg, a composition student of the Curtis Institute of Music, and performed on cello by Curtis student Tim Petrin.
Tonight’s event was just one of more than 100 engaging and educational One Book programs that will take place through March 19. Book discussions; mosaic workshops; political and historical presentations; and film screenings are just some of the wide variety of events offered in One Book, One Philadelphia’s 12th season.
Winner of the 2013 PEN/Hemingway Award for First Fiction and a finalist for the 2012 National Book Award, The Yellow Birds has been compared to Tim O’Brien’s classic war novel, The Things They Carried, for its powerful depiction of the truth and tragedy of war. Poet/novelist Powers vividly tells the story of a young soldier struggling to find meaning in his harrowing experiences in Iraq, while suffering profound guilt over his friend and fellow soldier’s death, as well as alienation from community and family upon his return home. According to The New York Times, “Kevin Powers has something to say, something deeply moving about the frailty of man and the brutality of war, and we should all lean closer and listen.”
Companion books for teens and children are also a part of the program. The middle-grade companion book, Children of War: Voices of Iraqi Refugees by Deborah Ellis collects the stories of young Iraqi refugees, who describe how their lives have been forever reshaped by war in their homeland. Based on the true story of a remarkable woman, the children’s companion book is The Librarian of Basra: A True Story from Iraq by Jeanette Winter. When war comes to Basra, Iraq, Alia Muhammad Baker is determined that the library’s treasure of 30,000 books will not be destroyed. With the help of her community, she ensures that this irreplaceable collection is not lost.
The One Book website at freelibrary.org/onebook is devoted to more resources, including downloadable discussion guides, recommended reading lists, event calendars, and more.
Additional One Book sponsors include Allied Barton, Stradley Ronon Stevens and Young, LLP, Dietz & Watson, and Pepper Hamilton, LLP. One Book media partners include WHYY, Philadelphia City Paper, Harmelin Media, and Keystone Outdoor.
About the Author
Kevin Powers was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, and in 2004 and 2005 he served with the U.S. Army in Mosul and Tal Afar, Iraq. After his honorable discharge, he studied English at Virginia Commonwealth University and received an M.F.A. in Poetry from the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas at Austin in 2012, where he studied poetry and also completed The Yellow Birds, his first novel. In addition, his poems have appeared in The Sun, Poetry, New Orleans Review, and New York Quarterly. He is currently at work on a collection of poetry, as well as his second novel.
About One Book, One Philadelphia
Founded in 2003 by the Free Library and the Mayor’s Office, One Book motivates tens of thousands of people to read the featured selection and participate in discussions, events, workshops, classes, and more. All Free Library locations will have several hard copies of The Yellow Birds—as well as the middle-grade companion book, Children of War: Voices of Iraqi Refugees, and children’s companion book, The Librarian of Basra: A True Story from Iraq—for customers to borrow with a Free Library card. In addition, the Free Library will have The Yellow Birds available as an ebook for download from its website. The book will also be available in audio format as a CD and as a downloadable audio file at freelibrary.org.
# # #
The 54-location Free Library of Philadelphia system advances literacy, guides learning, and inspires curiosity with millions of digital and physical materials; 25,000 yearly programs and workshops; free public computers and extensive Wi-Fi; and rich special collections, including those at Parkway Central Library and at The Rosenbach of the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation. The combined holdings of these renowned collections—which include hundreds of thousands of rare books, manuscripts, and ephemera—inspire unique exhibitions and programs throughout the year. With more than 6 million in-person and 9 million online visits annually, the Free Library and The Rosenbach are among the most widely used educational and cultural institutions in Philadelphia and boast a worldwide impact.
Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson hosted “Shop with a Jock”, sponsored by Walmart, for Philadelphia children in need. Each child was given $100 and the opportunity to shop with Jackson.
In the News:
Council President Clarke, Councilman Greenlee & Walmart to Distribute 500 Thanksgiving Turkeys to Seniors in Need
COUNCIL PRESIDENT CLARKE, COUNCILMAN GREENLEE & WALMART TO DISTRIBUTE 500 THANKSGIVING TURKEYS TO SENIORS IN NEED
Council President Darrell L. Clarke, Councilman At-Large Bill Greenlee and Walmart Stores will once again partner to ensure local seniors in need have a turkey to share on Thanksgiving.
Seniors receiving the turkeys have been pre-identified and will accept them at one of several supporting locations. A total of 500 turkeys will be given away. This is the 7th year of the partnership effort between Council President Clarke and Walmart Stores in Philadelphia.
Wednesday, Nov. 20, 201
Lutheran Settlement Home
1340 Frankford Ave.
10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
Martin Luther King Older Adult Center
2200 Cecil B. Moore Ave.
11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
WITH ADDITIONAL $850,000 TO SUPPORT FOOD CHARITIES
IN NYC, PHILADELPHIA, NEW JERSEY
Trenton, NJ, December 17, 2013 — To help meet the growing need for food assistance, the Walmart Foundation today announced an additional $853,709 of funding for food-related charities in the New York and Philadelphia Metro markets, including all of New Jersey.
Charities receiving additional funding from the Walmart Foundation include:
|Food Bank of South Jersey, Inc.||Pennsauken, NJ||
|Somerset Medical Center Foundation||Somerville, NJ||
|Operation Homefront Inc.||Doylestown, PA||
|Lutheran Settlement House||Philadelphia||
|Broad Street Ministry||Philadelphia||
|Federation of Neighborhood Centers (Teens 4 Good)||Philadelphia||
|Klein Jewish Community Center||Philadelphia||
|Bailey House, Inc.||New York||
|Church of Holy Apostles dba Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen||New York||
|City Harvest, Inc.||New York||
|Interfaith Nutrition Network||Hempstead, NY||
|Iris House: a Center for Women Living With HIV, Inc.||New York||
|One Hundred Black Men, Inc.||New York||
|Operation Homefront Tri-State||New York||
|Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York||Latham, NY||
|Operation Homefront Tri-State||New Jersey||
The Walmart Foundation’s contribution to New York hunger-related organizations was recently announced by New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, as part of its $1 million donation to New York State food banks and local charities.
According to a just-released study from The U.S. Conference of Mayors, emergency food requests in cities across the nation have increased by an average of 7 percent, and more than one in five people who need food assistance have not received it. The study probed 25 cities and their emergency food and homeless needs from September 2012 to August 2013.
According to the US Conference of Mayors report, Trenton and Philadelphia are especially hard hit and in need of support.
“We know that every day, across the country, people are struggling to put food on their tables,” said Julie Murphy, senior vice president of Walmart. “We are proud to partner with groups around the region to assist those who are hungry, just as we did last year in assisting the victims of Superstorm Sandy. Together with many hunger relief organizations, we’re working to make this holiday season a little brighter for many. But it’s important to emphasize that this effort must continue throughout the year. The need is great, and we encourage everybody to help in every way they can.”
Through the end of 2015, Walmart will donate more than 1.1 billion pounds of food from Walmart stores, distribution centers and Sam’s Club locations, valued at $1.75 billion; award $250 million in grants from Walmart and the Walmart Foundation to support hunger relief organizations at the local, state and national levels; mobilize Walmart associates and customers to lend their help and expertise in the fight against hunger; and collaborate with government, food manufacturers, other foundations and corporations to better understand and fight the issue of hunger in America
About Philanthropy at Walmart
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are committed to helping people live better through philanthropic efforts. By operating globally and giving back locally, Walmart is uniquely positioned to address the needs of the communities it serves and make a significant social impact within its core areas of giving: Hunger Relief & Healthy Eating, Sustainability, Career Opportunity and Women’s Economic Empowerment. Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are leading the fight against hunger in the United States with a $2 billion commitment through 2015. Walmart has donated more than 1 billion meals to those in need across the country. To learn more about Walmart’s giving, visit foundation.walmart.com.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) helps people around the world save money and live better – anytime and anywhere – in retail stores, online, and through their mobile devices. Each week, more than 245 million customers and members visit our 11,096 stores under 69 banners in 27 countries and e-commerce websites in 10 countries. With fiscal year 2013 sales of approximately $466 billion, Walmart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. Walmart continues to be a leader in sustainability, corporate philanthropy and employment opportunity. Additional information about Walmart can be found by visiting http://corporate.
Philadelphia Eagles DeSean Jackson shops with Umar Ransom and Elijah Freeman in Walmart’s Shop With A Jock at the Walmart store in South Philadelphia.
DeSean Jackson may be celebrating his 27th birthday this week but that has’t stopped him from giving back to the community. Jackson along with Michael Vick, Jon Dorenbos, Kurt Coleman and some other teammates took 50 kids from Youth Services Inc. on a shopping spree Tuesday at Walmart in South Philly.
Philadelphia Eagles’ wide-receiver DeSean Jackson was joined by some of his teammates Tuesday evening, as they took 50 kids on a $100 shopping spree at the Wal-Mart on South Columbus Boulevard.