By Anir Senyah
The New CItizens Press
LANSING, MI — On a cold rainy evening, The Lead Organizer, chair of Union Women Against Wal-Mart, Willie Paulsen was joined by about 35 other protesters from around Lansing. On November 15, the protesters came from a variety of organizations: MSU’s Students for Economic Justice, Locals 652 and 602, Wal-Mart Watch, and the community-at-large.
Willie Paulsen said, “Our goal is to educate the community about the adverse affect of having a Wal-Mart present. Wal-Mart destroys local economy as a huge corporation customer and they push smaller business and the low wage workers to despair.”
They strategically placed themselves outside the Wal-Mart Supercenter on the westside of town carrying signs asking consumers to check Wal-Mart labels.
In the pouring down rain, a passerby stopped and helped the
protesters by holding a sign in support of their efforts. Other passing motorists honked their horns to support the protesters.
The week of November 13-19 was “Higher Expectations Week.” It’s a week of campaigning, educating, protesting and picketing to inform the public of the issues that groups like Wal-Mart Watch have with the giant retailer.
Wal-Mart’s retail divisions include Wal-Mart Supercenters, Discount
Stores, Neighborhood Markets and SAM’S CLUB warehouses. There are currently four Wal-Mart’s in the area and two SAM’S CLUBS.
Wal-Mart has grown from a small chain to a global enterprise with 5,000 stores in 10 countries.
This growth according to Wal-Mart Watch has caused the demise of small businesses.
There were several other events that highlight the goals of Higher Expectations Week, including the Low Wage Health Screenings, followed by a statewide Town Hall meeting regarding the health care crisis in Michigan.
There was also a movie screening of “The High Costs of Low Prices” held at Lansing Community College’s Dart Auditorium and Bessey Hall on Michigan State University’s campus..
For more information on Wal-Mart Watch log on to
www.walmartwatch.com. For more information about Wal-Mart, log on to