This is in response to "Why is the city letting Wal-Mart into town?" (June 1 Juneau Empire).
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I would be very interested to know where Miss Hebert is getting her information on Wal-Mart. My guess is that her parents are opposed to Wal-Mart and thus feeding really bad information to their daughter.
There are many tourist operations in Juneau, and all of Alaska that exploit and underpay summer employees much worse than Wal-Mart. Tourist businesses in Juneau do not pay any health care, retirement or any other type of benefits other than wages, and low wages at that.
Wal-Mart hires many part- time employees. These employees like most part-time employees statewide receive no benefits. Wal-Mart pays its managers and full-time employees with a very competitive wage and benefits package.
And if Hebert shops at Fred Meyer and likes paying top dollar for goods she can buy at Wal-Mart for 10 percent to 20 percent less, then she should continue to support Fred Meyer. Kmart closed its doors in Juneau, and Fred Meyer raised its prices by an average of 10 percent to 20 percent across the board. Now that is exploiting the citizens of Juneau.
I am happy to see that both Home Depot and Wal-Mart are moving into Juneau. Now one can buy quality lumber and other goods at competitive prices rather than being "exploited" by the other businesses in Juneau, which for far too long have had no competition.