CommunityFDL Main Blog

Wal-Mart Kills Benefits For Part-Time Workers

America’s largest employer, Walmart, has announced that it will no longer be providing benefits for many of its part-time employees. According to the Associated Press, Walmart will no longer offer health insurance to employees who work less than an average of 30 hours a week starting January 1st, 2015. The workers will be forced to find other means of insurance and given Walmart’s terrible wages many of those workers will likely find themselves on public assistance.

Yes, one of the most profitable companies in world history plans to externalize its costs onto taxpayers, again.

The move is expected to affect 30,000 employees which are reported to make up 5% of Walmart’s part-time workforce. Walmart explained it killed the benefits because employees now had the option of using the Affordable Care Act/Obamacare but still were trying to use the company’s benefit program.

The announcement comes after Wal-Mart said far more U.S. employees and their families are enrolling in its health care plans than it had expected following rollout of the Affordable Care Act, which requires big companies to offer coverage to employees working 30 hours or more a week or face a penalty. It also requires most Americans to have health insurance or pay a penalty.

Wal-Mart, which employs about 1.4 million full- and part-time U.S. workers, says about 1.2 million Wal-Mart workers and family members combined now participate in its health care plan. And that has had an impact on Wal-Mart’s bottom line. Wal-Mart now expects the impact of higher health care costs to be about $500 million for the current fiscal year, or about $170 million higher than the original estimate of about $330 million that it gave in February.

In other words, part-time employees wanted health insurance but Walmart does not have to provide it for those working under 30 hours a week so they killed it for those they could. It will also be interesting to see how dramatically Walmart starts shifting hours of part-time employees to get them below 30 each week and therefore be able to boot them from the company program. Yet another unnecessary hardship working class Americans will face thanks to not having universal healthcare option independent of their employers.

Ironically, Walmart has now gotten into the health insurance business and has begun selling heath insurance products at its stores. Walmart employees aren’t just workers, they’re customers. And the cycle of poverty continues.

CommunityThe Bullpen

Wal-Mart Kills Benefits For Part-Time Workers

America’s largest employer, Walmart, has announced that it will no longer be providing benefits for many of its part-time employees. According to the Associated Press, Walmart will no longer offer health insurance to employees who work less than an average of 30 hours a week starting January 1st, 2015. The workers will be forced to find other means of insurance and given Walmart’s terrible wages many of those workers will likely find themselves on public assistance.

Yes, one of the most profitable companies in world history plans to externalize its costs onto taxpayers, again.

The move is expected to affect 30,000 employees which are reported to make up 5% of Walmart’s part-time workforce. Walmart explained it killed the benefits because employees now had the option of using the Affordable Care Act/Obamacare but still were trying to use the company’s benefit program.

The announcement comes after Wal-Mart said far more U.S. employees and their families are enrolling in its health care plans than it had expected following rollout of the Affordable Care Act, which requires big companies to offer coverage to employees working 30 hours or more a week or face a penalty. It also requires most Americans to have health insurance or pay a penalty.

Wal-Mart, which employs about 1.4 million full- and part-time U.S. workers, says about 1.2 million Wal-Mart workers and family members combined now participate in its health care plan. And that has had an impact on Wal-Mart’s bottom line. Wal-Mart now expects the impact of higher health care costs to be about $500 million for the current fiscal year, or about $170 million higher than the original estimate of about $330 million that it gave in February.

In other words, part-time employees wanted health insurance but Walmart does not have to provide it for those working under 30 hours a week so they killed it for those they could. It will also be interesting to see how dramatically Walmart starts shifting hours of part-time employees to get them below 30 each week and therefore be able to boot them from the company program. Yet another unnecessary hardship working class Americans will face thanks to not having universal healthcare option independent of their employers.

Ironically, Walmart has now gotten into the health insurance business and has begun selling heath insurance products at its stores. Walmart employees aren’t just workers, they’re customers. And the cycle of poverty continues.

Photo by Sven under Creative Commons license.

Previous post

Proposed Changes to Electric Bills in Wisconsin Would Raise Costs for Families With Low Incomes

Next post

Wal-Mart Kills Benefits For Part-Time Workers

Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
Subscribe in a reader