This is what's really going on behind the scenes if any caring shoppers want to know. Some of the few retail giant companies involved here, like Walmart, and others are completely lying out their asses saying they are giving the employees the opportunity to have it off if they want...total corporate bullshit...We all know what the choices are. Work it or be fired. They love to feed the media lies about how they run their companies when it comes to retail workers....
Sadly, as we've all seen in the past, petitions do no good with these heartless corporate monsters.
Forget about getting up at the crack of dawn on Thanksgiving to run a turkey trot or to start roasting a bird in the oven. This year a slew of retailers will once again be upping the holiday-shopping ante by opening for business, and Kmart is hoping to get the jump on its competitors. Shoppers at the retailer’s 1,077 stores can start hunting for a Blue Light Special starting at 6 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day. The store won’t shut its doors until midnight on Black Friday, 42 hours later—and some employees are allegedly being required to clock in or face getting fired.
The long hours and lack of flexible scheduling spurred Delaware resident Jillian Fisher to launch a petition asking Kmart to end its draconian holiday policy. She asked the company to commit to letting her mom, Donna Fisher, who has worked for Kmart for 21 years, and other “employees to request Thanksgiving Day off and to rely on volunteer employees.”
“We understand that it is retail, and employees understand that they have to work hours on holidays,” wrote Jillian in the petition. “However, Kmart’s unnecessary hours are forcing its employees to miss out on important time with their families. With lives that are continuously busier and busier, it is more important now than ever to put an end to this before we no longer have holidays. There are other stores who have decided to close on Thanksgiving to give their employees time with their families. Why not be in the news in a positive light? The sales can wait a few more hours.”
In the past week, nearly 5,000 people have signed the petition, and the manager at Donna Fisher’s store has since scheduled her for her preferred shift. But Jillian Fisher isn’t backing down.
“What started out as a daughter’s fight for her mother has revealed larger problems,” said Jillian. That’s because the store’s holiday hours and the way it is scheduling employee shifts is just another sign of the canary in the retail worker’s coal mine.
“As far back as I can remember, my mother has always worked both Thanksgiving and Black Friday,” said Jillian. “The change [at Kmart] has been with the longer hours, delays in receiving a schedule, and schedules that impede on spending quality time with family during the Thanksgiving holiday.”Kmart says associates know what they’re getting into when they accept a job at the company, and it claims it takes employee schedules into consideration.“Our stores do their very best to staff with seasonal associates and those who volunteer to work holidays,” the company said in a statement. “All associates are compensated time-and-a-half pay for the hours they work on Thanksgiving Day. We want to express deep appreciation in advance to all associates who will be working Thanksgiving evening and the day after Thanksgiving.”
Jillian conducted an unofficial poll of 56 individuals who claimed to be Kmart employees and who work at various stores across America. Only three people told her they were being allowed to take the day off. Several respondents told her that if they called in on Thanksgiving, they’d be fired. Only seven employees said Kmart management asked associates about their a
availability during the holiday.
With Thanksgiving only a week away, according to Jillian, many Kmart employees still don’t know what hours they’ll be scheduled to work. That makes it tough for them to plan whether they will be home for a turkey dinner or if they’ll be picking through leftovers on their own.
“One simple solution that we hope will be the outcome of this petition is for stores, such as Kmart, to rely on volunteer employees,” said Jillian. “A sign-up sheet should be posted with enough advance notice (at least 2-3 weeks ahead of time), and those who want to work can sign up. As a result, stores could open, individuals who want it can still have access to in-store shopping at stores whose employees have opted to work on Thanksgiving.”
Last year a University of Connecticut poll found that 90 percent of Americans were not in favor of slogging through a store’s aisles on Thanksgiving. So it’s no surprise that some Kmart shoppers are coming down hard on the retailer.
“Not only will I not shop on Thanksgiving, I will not be shopping at Kmart for any of my holiday shopping. Black Friday deals are awesome, but when you take away your employees’ Thanksgiving to get a jump start on your seasonal sales, your greed and lack of family values are disgusting!” wrote Vicki Null-Lanum on the Kmart Facebook page.
“Well you won’t see me in your stores on Thanksgiving. Or the other 364 days of the year if you fire people for a holiday. Shame on Kmart,” commented Rich Geiger, another Facebook user.
Of course, if nobody showed up at Kmart (or other retailers like Macy’s and Walmart) on Thanksgiving, stores would get the message that spending time with family members on the holiday still matters. If there are no shoppers scrambling for a deal on a flat-screen television, there’s no reason to be open.
“I remain concerned for the countless employees at Kmart’s remaining 1,000 plus stores across the country,” said Jillian. “I plan to continue to fight not just for my mother, but for every family that has to choose between spending time together and working longer hours.”