So far, Chicago's only got one Walmart - which is wonderful and crazy when you think how many there are in most other cities. And it's not for lack of trying. Walmart has long envisioned dozens of stores here, but the City Council's zoning committee has consistently thwarted the chain's plans, denying permission to build due to concerns about low wages and poor worker treatment.
But that's all about to change now that the corporation has granted more concessions to labor rights advocates.
In a June 24 press conference, the Chicago Federation of Labor announced it supported Walmart's newest store, noting that the company had promised to pay its workers $8.75/hour – 50 cents more than Illinois minimum wage – with a 40 cent raise after one year.
Just hours after the labor union threw its support behind Walmart, the City Council's zoning committee followed suit, giving Walmart approval to build its second store in the Pullman neighborhood on the South Side.
The full council must now approve the bid, and chances are that it will, meaning a short-term solution to the unemployment problems we face, but a long-term disaster for local businesses