Out of Control Policy Blog

Biggest Box Brawl Yet?

Wal-Mart has its eyes on New York, but:

    Small businesses, union leaders, City Council members and even some mayoral candidates are gearing up to prevent Wal-Mart from setting foot in town, now that the world's largest retailer has acknowledged it wants to open its first New York City store, planned for Rego Park, Queens, in 2008.

It could be the biggest battle against a single story in the city's history:

    "There will never be a more diverse and comprehensive coalition than this effort against Wal-Mart," said Richard Lipsky, spokesman for the Neighborhood Retail Alliance, an anti-Wal-Mart coalition in New York. "It will include small-business people, labor people, environmental groups, women's groups, immigrant groups and community groups."

If I were a WM competitor in NY I'd be especially worried. And if you've experienced what passes for "customer service" in the Big Apple you know what I'm talking about.

I once witnessed a store employee challenge a customer to a fight because the customer was visibly annoyed by having to wait in a long line while there were several employees just kind of hanging out, chatting with each other.

I bet that customer wouldn't mind even a slightly-too-chipper "Welcome to Wal-Mart!" greeting.

For more, see this, this, this, oh and this.

Ted Balaker is Producer


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