Letters to the Editor

Big business: Employees may lose self worth

Wal-Mart as a subject matter on these opinion pages seems to appear every so often. With that in mind I had no compelling interest to add to these comments until Ms. Heistad’s, the director of the Greater Oak Harbor Chamber of Commence, comments appeared.

The director implied that Wal-Mart increased the community’s money supply and that circulation of that money in the community should take precedence over employment decorum in the work place. Financial reward over employee self worth. This I found unsettling like an unflattering reflection in the mirror that you are forced to see.

Over the last several years numerous lawsuits, articles and publications have highlighted negative employment practices at Wal-Mart facilities. I recommend reading Barbara Ehrenreich’s, book, “Nickel and Dimed,” for an insightful view of Wal-Mart employment practices. It illustrates that Wal-Mart is willing to sacrifice their employees’ self worth in pursuit of financial reward. The old saw where there is smoke there must be fire comes to mind. Is it possible that negative self worth employment practices will develop at Oak Harbor’s Wal-Mart? With a community more interested in financial reward than human self worth illustrated by Ms. Heistad’s comments, it very well could.

My uncomfortable reflection in the mirror comment comes from my realizations that I can remember the prices under the smiley-faces sign posts more so than I remember the names under the smiley-faces of the Wal-Mart employees.

Should self worth in the work place be sacrificed for the community’s financial reward? Because an employer is large and powerful does it mean they are always right in what they say and do?”

Thomas F. Strang


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