On July 9, Walmart bared its teeth against the living wage. Alex Barron, a Washington D.C. regional general manager took to the Washington Post, stating that Walmart would not pursue three planned D.C. stores if the city council’s living wage legislation–which would require major retailers to pay workers at least $12.50 per hour, instead of the current $8.25–passed. The Post then reported that a team of Walmart representatives and lobbyists presented the ultimatum to the council itself. The law passed anyway, though it’s unclear if the mayor will sign it.
As it turns out, the increase in wages will cost an average customer the price of a pizza per year and the rest of the economic arguments are false. Living wage employees actually cost communities significantly less realizing a plus gain rather than an economic burden. Good for DC for catalyzing the conversations that surface the truth of living wages.