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Wal-Mart Agrees to Improve Safety Conditions at Stores

HeadlineAug 08, 2013

Wal-Mart has agreed to improve safety conditions at more than 2,800 stores as part of a settlement with federal health and safety regulators. Federal inspectors had uncovered what they termed “repeat and serious” violations at a store in Rochester, New York. Under the deal, Wal-Mart will improve procedures related to trash compactors and the handling of chemicals and hire an outside monitor to ensure compliance at store locations in 28 states. Wal-Mart will also pay $190,000, a tiny fraction of its profits, which amounted to $17 billion last year. In a statement, the worker group OUR Walmart, which has recently led a number of historic strikes against the company, said, “This is just the latest indication of Walmart’s malfeasance throughout the supply chain, and these serious problems represent a major danger to workers, the environment, and the company’s future.” Last month workers at a California warehouse that moves products for Wal-Mart launched a two-day strike to protest alleged retaliation after reporting safety issues that included blocked emergency exits, non-functioning forklift brakes and a lack of sufficient ventilation and water under intense heat.

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