‘Extensive plumbing problems’ to close Walmart store

Walmart Strike

Just one of those coinky-dinks that seem to dog Walmarts that see union activity. I’d love to hear them explain why all those workers have been told they will have to reapply after the “plumbing” is fixed:

Some employees accused Wal-Mart Stores Inc on Friday of closing a location in the Los Angeles area for six months in retaliation for workers demanding for better wages and benefits.

The largest U.S. retailer denied the accusation, saying it was temporarily closing five stores in four states to address recurring plumbing problems. The closures include a location in Pico Rivera, California, that has been a center of protests by workers in recent years.

A group of employees backed by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union described the move as “retaliatory” in a statement and said it would hold a news conference on Monday to lay out its case. Wal-Mart had not requested any city plumbing permits for the Pico Rivera store, the workers and city officials said.

Pico Rivera City Manager Rene Bobadilla described the sudden manner in which the company closed the store as “abnormal” but said the city had offered its help to expedite the work needed to be done to get the store open again.

“It’s the first time I’ve encountered this. It is not a normal thing to happen,” Bobadilla said. He declined to comment further on Wal-Mart’s actions. “The only fact is they are saying they have a sewer problem and they are going to be closed for six months.”

Bobadilla said he was focused on helping the 533 employees impacted by the closure to find work and services.

Wal-Mart said in an emailed statement that it made the decision to close the Pico Rivera location and four other stores because they all required extensive repairs.