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Mexican Teen Workers Stiffed by Wal-Mart

Being an adolescent bagger at Wal-Mart is tough enough without the added issue that comes with working at the megachain’s “Superama” locations in Mexico, where thousands of teen employees labor without receiving wages from the company. Whatever they earn comes solely from tips. Via Boing Boing


Newsweek:

In a country where nearly half of the population scrapes by on less than $4 a day, any income source is welcome in millions of households, even if it hinges on the goodwill of a tipping customer. And Wal-Mart did not invent the bagger program that, as a written statement from the company notes, pre-dates the firm’s arrival in Mexico, nor is it alone within the country’s retail sector in benefiting from the toil of unpaid adolescents. But in Mexico City, for example, the 4,300 teenagers who work in Wal-Mart’s retail stores free of charge dwarf similar numbers laboring unpaid for Mexican competitors like Comercial Mexicana (715) and Gigante (427). Although Wal-Mart’s worldwide code of ethics expressly forbids any “associate” from working without compensation, the company’s Mexican subsidiary asserts that the grocery baggers “cannot be considered workers.”

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