Wal-Mart Signs Settlement with U.S. Labor Department

by Talk Business & Politics ([email protected]) 187 views 

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has entered into a corporate-wide settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Labor to improve safety and health conditions in all 2,857 Walmart and Sam’s Club stores under federal jurisdiction. 

According to a news releases by the Department of Labor, the settlement, which resolves two enforcement cases that began in 2011, includes provisions for the Bentonville-based retailer to enhance safety and health practices and training related to trash compactors, cleaning chemicals and hazard communications corporate-wide.

Under the settlement, trash compactors must remain locked while not in use, and may not be operated except under the supervision of a trained manager or other trained, designated monitor.

Wal-Mart will also improve its hazard communications training and will enhance its procedures for cleaning chemicals to ensure that employees do not handle undiluted chemicals.

Wal-Mart will ensure employees are trained on the new procedures in a language, format, and vocabulary that the workers can understand. 

Settlement negotiations took place after trash compactor and chemical cleaning hazard citations came from two separate inspections conducted at the Walmart Supercenter in Rochester, N.Y. in 2011 and 2012.

As part of the settlement, Wal-Mart has also agreed to abate other hazards in the Rochester store unrelated to the corporate-wide remedy, and will pay $190,000 in civil penalties.

A summary of the agreement will be posted in each affected store.