Walmart is dropping health benefits at a time when sickness is at an all-time high.
On Tuesday, October 7, 2014, Walmart announced it is eliminating health benefits for about 30,000 employees to control its rising healthcare costs.
Part-time employees who work less than 30 hours per week will no longer be eligible for benefits.
Walmart said more employees signed up for health benefits than they expected, so now they have decided to eliminate the benefits.
Walmart spokeswoman, Sally Welborn, said it was a tough decision.
In 2013, Costco’s quarterly earnings report revealed a fairly healthy eight percent rate of growth in year-on-year sales—including a five percent rise in same store sales.Walmart fell short at less than one and a half percent.
In an identical economy, how do we explain Costco’s growth vis-à-vis the failures over at Walmart?
“Here’s a crazy thought—might it have something to do with the fact that Costco pays nearly all of its employees a decent living (well in excess of the minimum wage) while Walmart continues to pay its workers as if their employees don’t actually need to eat more than once a week, live in an enclosed space and, on occasion, take their kids to see a doctor,” said Forbes analyst Rick Ungar.
As the old saying goes, you get what you pay for. Costco pays their employees a livable wage and gets sales per employee at double what Walmart subsidiary Sam’s Club gets from their employees who work for lousy pay.
Employees of Walmart said they cannot talk about it or they will be fired. Something management says Walmart has been doing since the death of Walmart founder, Sam Walton, in 1992.
Unnamed sources said if they were to go to corporate and express their concerns that they would be out of a job the next day.
“It’s always about Walmart and never about employees,” said one manager. “There are employees that have not had raises in nine (9) years, and are actually capped at wages below $9.00 an hour.”
He added, “Of course I want to say something, but I also want my job.”
The manager went on to say that Walmart claims they pay their employees an average of $12.00 a hour. However, those figures include top paid managers and other top executives.
“Remove the top paid people from the equation and you will see what Walmart really pays its employees. The people who actually make the everyday operation of Walmart possible are barely making ends meet,” he said.
In November of 2013, Florida Congressman Alan Grayson ousted Walmart, the nation’s largest private sector employer, for being the biggest consumer of taxpayer supported aid. According Grayson, in many states, Walmart employees are the largest group of Medicaid recipients. They are also the single biggest group of food stamp recipients. Grayson said Walmart’s “associates” are paid so little, that they receive $1,000 on average in public assistance. These amount to massive taxpayer subsidies for private companies. Bloomberg confirmed Grayson’s statements and said Walmart all but hands their employees the food stamp forms. McDonald’s comes in second.
Ocala Post reached out to Walmart corporate and they said they are dropping benefits to save Walmart from risings costs. However, they are encouraging employees to sign up for Obamacare.
Target announced in January that it was eliminating benefits for all part-time workers and gave a $500 cash payment to each employee.
Walmart said they will not be offering any cash payments.
This announcement comes in the same week that Walmart announced it will no longer match Publix’s buy-one-get-one (BOGO) free offers in its Florida stores.