Walmart has been trying to open a store in New York City for years. Once again, the retailer is fighting for that chance.
Chanting "No Walmart," small business owners, workers and their supporters** rallied on the steps of City Hall to urge the City Council to prevent Walmart' from opening in any of the five boroughs.
Mom and pop shops say it will wipe out their businesses.
Walmart officials declined to talk on camera, but issued a statement: "Walmart creates jobs that provide a competitive wage, affordable benefits and the chance to build a career."
Council Speaker Christine Quinn is backing small business over the retail giant. She said research shows that when Walmart moves in, three jobs are lost for every two jobs Walmart creates.
Afterward, at a City Council committee hearing on the potential impact Walmart would have on the city, Quinn criticized Walmart for refusing to attend to answer questions.
But community activist Tony Herbert presented a petition with 30,000 signatures from around the city supporting Walmart building in their communities.
Walmart also said the reason it didn't attend the hearing is because the hearing focused just on Walmart's possible impact on the city and didn't include the impact of other similar stores that already exist here.
The CEO wrote an op-ed piece in a local newspaper, saying "give the company a chance" and that Walmart has been successful in other cities.
**Including members of Make the Road New York (MRNY).
Since the November NYC elections, MRNY members have been hard at work setting the agenda for our next mayor, City Council and citywide elected officials.
We kicked off "Talking Transition" with a low-wage worker forum and our attorneys have been staffing a Single Stop clinic around the clock at the Transition tent.
Recently, our youth joined the Transitions conversation to bring education and police reform issues into the spotlight for the new elected officials. 17-year-old youth leader Cheyanne Smith was also profiled in the New York Times for her leadership to make NYC schools more respectful, safe, and dignified places for learning.