Black Friday is a day that most people want to shop for Christmas gifts for their family and friends, and sometimes even themselves. They rush to the stores to grab deals on electronics, household items, toys and more. Why, because prices are low. You know what else is low? According to various articles, it’s the wages of the employees. Some are working late Thanksgiving and all day Black Friday. It’s such a big deal that employees around the world went on strike.
A strike occurs when people feel like their employers aren’t listening to their needs. It’s usually decided by the union and the employees decide whether or not they want to participate. The unions in Spain and Germany advised employees of Amazon to go on strike today. They are protesting their low wages as Amazon employees despite their employer making huge profits. Today is especially one of those days. In fact, the article describes one reason for the origin of the name “Black Friday” as it is the day that most companies turn red ink losses into black ink profits. If that’s the case, then perhaps Black Friday should be a holiday where they pay their employees overtime or double time and a half since they are making so much money.
Strikes didn’t stop in Germany or Spain, the article says there were more strikes across Europe today. “Protests were also planned for Amazon facilities in Italy, France, the United Kingdom, and Germany” according to the article. I don’t know why companies never want to budge and fairly pay their employees. These aren’t third-world countries, this is an ongoing, low wage worldwide phenomena in first-world countries. I feel bad for second-world and third-world countries.
The employees that have to work after Thanksgiving (or on Thanksgiving depending on the store) should be compensated fairly. Have you seen the fights and craziness that occurs on these days? People are actually injured and some people have lost their lives (although it wasn’t Black Friday related – just occurred while shopping). Employees that earn low wages are the ones who actually need Black Friday deals the most. It’s the day for the best deals and those with low wages are in need of those deals. How else would they be able to afford common items or even luxury items at all when they are perhaps barely making ends meet? Instead, companies like Walmart and Amazon have their employees working today and probably without the benefit of being able to grab any goodies for themselves.
Low wages aren’t just the world’s Amazon Black Friday problem. Many countries were experiencing the same issue with their employers well before today. Last month, postal workers in Canada went on strike because they wanted higher wages. They refused the government’s 2 percent raise negotiations and asked for more according to inflation. Also in October, Italy’s employees of several public sectors went on strike too. They were upset for a number of reasons with low wages being on their list.
Why is it that the rich man always has to get richer at the expense of their employees? Low wages should be a thing of the past by now because the world has so much more that needs our attention. The holidays were supposed to be a day when you gathered to spend quality time together – at home. Instead, we are devising plans to go out to the stores and score deals. If you know me, then you know I love Thanksgiving, but it will never be for Black Friday and its history of overworked and underpaid employees.