#OccupyAnnArbor: Operation Black Friday Surprise

A group of Occupy Ann Arbor protesters headed to the Walmart in Pittsfield Township on Friday morning to stage a Black Friday event to urge people to boycott the national (and largely corporate-fueled) shopping day.

There were no injuries, and no arrests.

Here is a copy of the group's Black Friday message:

Attention Wal-Mart shoppers:

We are here/ to acknowledge/ that low prices,/ come with a high cost,/ both locally and globally:

750 thousand women/ work as "sales associates"/ in Wal-Mart stores.

These women /are paid wages/ well below the poverty level

Half of those women /qualify for federal assistance.

*Wal-Mart drives down wages/ in urban areas,/ with an annual lost/earnings of at least $4.47 billion dollars/ for retail workers.

A "full-time" Wal-Mart employee/ must work / 1646 years/ in order to accumulate/ what the Wal-Mart CEO/ receives for one year.

Wal-Mart's refusal to pay American's living wage costs Taxpayers over 1 billion dollars to Support its Employees

1 Wal-Mart store with 200 employees costs federal taxpayers over 400 thousand dollars per year.

Wal-Mart's health care plan fails to cover nearly 700,000 employees.

Thousands of employees and their children across the nation are on Federal and State health insurance plans.

Women who work for Wal-Mart make up more than two-thirds of its hourly employees, but hold only one-third of managerial positions.

Only 15 percent of Wal-Mart store managers are women.

Wal-Mart has played a major role in the outsourcing of American jobs overseas.

Wal-Mart now imports over 50 percent of its merchandise from overseas.

Wal-Mart has used its tremendous power in the marketplace to bully American firms into moving their production facilities overseas and are required to keep prices low at all costs, even if it requires forcing employees to work in sweatshop conditions.

Women who make pants in El Salvador earn 15 cents for each pair; Wal-Mart sells these pants for about $16.

Women in Central America who make clothes for Wal-Mart live in shacks lacking running water or plumbing.

Women in China live nine to twelve to a room in government-provided dormitories.

A new Wal-Mart destroys jobs by putting local merchants out of business, in return Wal-Mart creates fewer jobs with lower pay and mostly part-time.

We the 99% encourage you to as a shopper to be aware, of where your money is going, to support local business which tend to offer better working conditions, and chance for advancement.

To the employees of Wal-Mart, please know you are not to blame, know that you have a voice, you have the power to take a stand, and know that we are the 99% and stand behind you.


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