As Walmart Turns 50, Are You a Fan of the Store?
TAKE THE POLL: How many satisfied or unhappy customers does the giant retailer have in Eureka or Wildwood? The store chain turned 50 on Tuesday.
Walk into any Walmart store on any given day and the checkout lanes will be packed with shoppers taking advantage of those "Low Prices. Every Day."
The local Walmart Supercenter in Eureka is a large presence in the business community. The parking lot always seem full.
Walmart is celebrating its 50th birthday this week, marking the date in 1962 that Sam Walton opened the first store in Rogers, AR. Whether customers this week were aware of the birthday or not, Walmart stores were busy with shoppers as they are many other weeks.
The busy Walmart stores fly in the face of criticism the giant retailer receives from some advocacy groups that accuse it of a variety of ills, including charges by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance that Walmart has been the primary driver behind 40,000 U.S. factories closing, eliminating millions of jobs. Institute representatives also stated Walmart is the primary reason behind the decline of independent retailers in the United States between 1992 and 2007, and the rise in America's working poor, which is at its highest level in decades, according to Census data.
Another consumer group SumOfUs.org also slammed Walmart this week for its record on women's rights and worker's compensation abuses.
SumOfUs.org shared the following statistics:
The six Walmart heirs have a net worth equal to the bottom 30 percent of Americans.
- Walmart costs U.S. taxpayers upwards of $1.5 billion. That is the same amount that was cut from the global poverty alleviation budget in 2012 due to budget shortfalls.
- Walmart’s highest-earning women continue to be paid 67 cents for every dollar their male counterparts earn.
- The average Walmart sales associate would have to work for over twenty-one thousand years to equal the amount of money Walmart pays out to the average Walton heir annually.
Walmart counters the criticism by pointing out in a news release on its website that it donated, through the Walmart Foundation, 338 million pounds of food to local food banks during 2011 and that it distributed $872.7 million in cash and in-kind gifts in the U.S. last year as well.
And then there are the crowds of consumers who cast their votes for the retailer with their feet by shopping at the store in large numbers.
So, are you a happy Walmart shopper or a consumer who takes your business elsewhere?