Wal-Mart plans to lay off 2,300 workers at its Sam’s Clubs, the company said Friday.
CNN news told, that’s 2% of the workforce for the wholesale club chain, which has nearly 600 locations in the United States.
A little less than half of the employees affected are assistant managers, according to Sam’s Club spokesman Bill Durling. Before the layoff, each club’s fresh section — which sells meat, poultry, seafood, dairy, produce and baked goods — had six managers. Half of those jobs have been eliminated. Instead there will be three fresh section managers, who will be paid more, Durling said.
The company eliminated some hourly positions too.
Each employee affected by the cut will be paid for 60 days and is encouraged to look for other jobs at Sam’s Clubs or its parent company, Wal-Mart, (WMT, Fortune 500)stores. If they cannot find a job within the company, they will receive some severance, Durling said.
Durling said that the company also plans to add at least fifteen more stores in the next year.
Before, Wal-Mart announced a partnership Thursday with a workers’ rights group in Florida in an effort to boost pay and labor standards in the tomato-growing industry.
The Coalition of Immokalee Workers said Wal-Mart (WMT, Fortune 500) has signed on to “strengthen and expand” its Fair Food Program, which consists of a commitment from corporate buyers to pay an additional penny per pound of tomatoes that then gets passed on to workers. There is also a human rights code of conduct that deals with safety, dispute resolution and other issues.
Greg Asbed, co-founder of the Immokalee coalition, estimates that 30,000 Florida workers will benefit directly from the agreement through higher pay or increased support for the Fair Food Program’s code of conduct at the farms where they work. Current pay for tomato picking varies among growers, but is around 50 cents per 32-pound bucket of tomatoes, Asbed said.
“We are truly pleased to welcome Wal-Mart into the Fair Food Program,” said the coalition’s Gerardo Reyes. “No other company has the market strength and consumer reach that Wal-Mart has.”