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Community Groups, Unions Send Wal-Mart Letter Outlining Requests

A handful of community and labor groups have penned an open letter to Walmart concerning the company’s announced intention to take over the farmers' market building on Imperial Avenue in Sherman Heights.

The letter states that the groups met with Walmart representatives and consultants on March 29 to discuss the community’s expectations for the store and to request “a legally binding community benefits agreement.”

The list of priorities, which letter-signers say were gathered through soliciting direct input from the community, include local hiring, affordable health benefits for employees, traffic mitigation projects, safety improvements, and investment in community programs.

“All of the issues included are considered vital commitments to meeting the needs of local residents and important for any large retailer interested in being a partner in the success of our community,” says the coalition. “This is a community that deserves real business partners and the respect that comes with a legally binding agreement. We'll help this community stand up for what we deserve. It's now up to Walmart to choose to be that partner.”

According to the letter, Walmart had previously promised a response to the requests laid out in last month’s meeting by April 12.

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A handful of community and labor groups have penned an open letter to Walmart concerning the company’s announced intention to take over the farmers' market building on Imperial Avenue in Sherman Heights.

The letter states that the groups met with Walmart representatives and consultants on March 29 to discuss the community’s expectations for the store and to request “a legally binding community benefits agreement.”

The list of priorities, which letter-signers say were gathered through soliciting direct input from the community, include local hiring, affordable health benefits for employees, traffic mitigation projects, safety improvements, and investment in community programs.

“All of the issues included are considered vital commitments to meeting the needs of local residents and important for any large retailer interested in being a partner in the success of our community,” says the coalition. “This is a community that deserves real business partners and the respect that comes with a legally binding agreement. We'll help this community stand up for what we deserve. It's now up to Walmart to choose to be that partner.”

According to the letter, Walmart had previously promised a response to the requests laid out in last month’s meeting by April 12.

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The demolition of part of the old building has begun. Not sure it's a bad thing. You decide: link text Historic Barrio District is posting photos.

April 18, 2012

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