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Wal-Mart and its practices; ethical and moral?

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Read Case Study 22, 'Wal-Mart: But We Do Give Them a 10 Percent Employee Discount.' (Provided) Summarize the overall viewpoint of the author. Discuss ethical issues facing Wal-Mart dealing with, 'off-the-clock-work', sexual discrimination, health benefits, the role of unions, the use of undocumented workers, as well as issues relating to child and labor laws.

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The author's overall viewpoint of Wal-Mart is one of pretty much sitting on the fence. While a few of the more publicized controversies facing Wal-Mart are brought up in the article, it does not provide a full case study of how such controversies have or have not affected Wal-Mart's bottom line. Both sides of most of the issues are brought forth, leaving the reader to wonder exactly which side of the issue is the writer actually stating as his/her own opinion. There is plenty of room for research on the issues listed and far more information than what will be presented here by this writer in helping the student to answer the required questions.

Wal-Mart is confronted by several moral and ethical issues. The obvious that of "off-clock" work is mentioned in the case study. A further issue is that of health care coverage, a topic of constant discussion in the media and congressional houses. As one of the largest employers in the United States, one would think that Wal-Mart, who claims to know what is best for its employees, would ensure that those employees were covered by at least the minimal of health care coverage. The truth is far from that realization. In fact, employees are kept from full time employment through careful monitoring of their work hours by corporate. An employee may work as many as 11 weeks at 36 to 40 hours, actual full-time employment hours, but will be cut on the twelfth week to less than that in order to preserve the employee's part-time status. In this manner, the employee is never eligible for health insurance as a full-time employee. Some health insurance has been offered for part-time employment but those employees who work those part-time employee positions are usually not in a position to need such insurance, i.e. students, spouses on family ...

Solution Summary

A discussion of Wal-Mart's practices regarding off the clock work, health insurance, scheduling, and unionization