WalMart on the Back Foot Over Worker Strikes

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Walmart Supercentre storefront
Walmart Supercentre entrance on July 24, 2013 in Etobicoke, Ontario, Canada.

A judge for the National Labour Relations Board has ruled that Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT) were in violation of federal law over firing and disciplining workers in 2013 after a workers strike.

Judge Geoffery Carter ruled that the 2013 strikes were lawful and protected under the National Labour Relation Act, despite Wal-Marts claims to the contrary. He also ordered them to reinstate the workers and compensate them for any “loss of earnings and other benefits.”

The strikes were organized via social media and are part of a new trend which employers are struggling to grapple with. The new kind of flash protests are organized by advocacy groups and workers rights groups via the internet, making them almost impossible to predict.

Wal-Mart had claimed that the protests were disruptive to business and therefore that they were within their rights to discipline workers.

What do you think? Should employees be able to discipline and fire workers for holding protests disruptive to business, or were these workers operating within their rights?

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