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Wal-Mart Cleared in Labor Case

September 06, 2003|From Reuters

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said the National Labor Relations Board was dismissing all unfair-labor charges filed against the retail giant in a case in Lake Elsinore.

Wal-Mart said late Thursday that the board ruled it did not violate the law during a union election, and reversed a ruling by an administrative law judge finding one violation.

The ruling stems from a 2001 union election for employees of Wal-Mart Tire & Lube Express, which was blocked at the last minute after union leaders filed charges against Wal-Mart, alleging that it had coerced 19 employees into rejecting union membership.

Wal-Mart, however, maintained that the union leaders blocked the election because they knew they were going to lose.

Wal-Mart, the world's largest retail chain, has been the subject of numerous lawsuits in California, where Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante, who is running to replace Gov. Gray Davis if he is recalled, recently attacked the company's labor practices.

One pending sexual discrimination case by seven former female Wal-Mart employees alleges that the company paid its female workers lower salaries and forced them to attend strip clubs with male colleagues while on business trips.

A judge in U.S. District Court in San Francisco is scheduled to rule this month on whether to give the sexual discrimination case class-action status to cover more than 1.5 million current and former female employees of Wal-Mart.

Wal-Mart has denied those charges.

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