Wednesday, February 1, 2012

3 Reasons Why Target is on Federal Trial

Target has been awfully hopeful many people would be quick to forget about why the retail giant who until this summer, never saw bad PR, is currently sitting in front of a federal labor board judge in Brooklyn, NY.

It all started years ago, when Target execs made a decision to put profits ahead of people.  The choice was simple for them, sales continued to climb and they even began to compete with the retailer who was once dubbed 'untouchable', Walmart.  They've always been looked at as a better employer than Walmart, but it took 12 workers from a store outside of New York City who were tired of being disrespected and being treated like pawns, not people, to bring the truths about Target to light.  Working for them is no different than working for Walmart, in fact it could actually be worse.

So if you can get past their propaganda, flashy ads and cheap prices, here's three reasons Target sits before a federal labor board judge this week.

Target used this van to transport workers
to vote "NO" on election day
& get a free lunch!

1. Illegal Surveillance of Workers who wanted a Union
Target employees wanted a union, but management made union supporting feel almost criminal like, they actively encouraged the surveillance of 'pro-union' employees. They even told employees to call the police if union Organizers came to speak to them.
From Crain's NY Business
The labor board also decided the retailer unlawfully created the impression that workers' union activities were under surveillance and that supervisors told workers they could not solicit on behalf of the union in non-working areas, said Alvin Blyer, the regional director of the labor board.
2.  Interrogation of Workers Who Wanted a Union
So what comes after illegal surveillance? Obviously interrogation! From Crain's:
The labor board also found sufficient evidence to add charges that supervisors interrogated workers about their union activity and told them they could not solicit on behalf of the union in non-working areas, said Alvin Blyer, the regional director of the labor board.
3.  Intimidating Workers to vote against the union.
From handbills which questioned if the store would close 'if the union got in', to captive audience meetings where they told employees the store would close and they wouldn't have a job (nice).  If that weren't enough, they shoved corny anti-union propaganda (like this video) down the throats of employees...every day.

If that wasn't enough, Gawker sums up how Target's image was tainted from the June election,  and more importantly gives you worker testimonials (or 'soul-sucking stories) from Target workers throughout the country on what it's really like working for the bulls-eye.

It's summed up nicely here by Pat Purcell, Assistant to the President of UFCW Local 1500:

“There was only one way for Target to win this election, and that was to break the law.”

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