The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has determined that retail giant Walmart threatened retaliation against employees considering staging protests on Black Friday in 2012. The board ruled that Walmart managers in California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Ohio, Texas and Washington unlawfully threatened, disciplined and, in some cases fired, employees taking part in protests the big shopping day following Thanksgiving.
In two states, the NLRB noted, company threats were broadcast on television and sent in written statements to employees. The company also allegedly placed some employees under surveillance before protests began.
The NLRB ordered the two sides to settle the dispute or go before an administrative law judge, who could impose sanctions against the company.
The board exonerated Walmart of charges it violated the National Labor Relations Act by changing two employees’ schedules and moving nonemployee protesters away from one of its stores.