Associates Joining Wal-Mart Health Insurance Program
By George Anderson
Even Wal-Mart’s critics have something good to say about the company’s announcement that it has enrolled 70,000 employees in its healthcare benefits programs for next year.
According to a report in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, about one-third of the new enrollees have signed up for the cheapest program offered by the company.
Wal-Mart Watch, an organization that opposes the retailer’s personnel policies, saw the announcement as a positive sign. Tracy Sefl, a spokesperson for Wal-Mart Watch, called
it “a step in the right direction” saying her group believes “in giving Wal-Mart credit when it does the right thing.”
“We firmly believe our efforts are having an impact in convincing Wal-Mart to embrace their role in solving America’s healthcare crisis,” she said. “We’re dragging them slowly,
slowly, slowly toward reform. It’s a 12-step program. The first step: admit they have a problem.”
Wal-Mart spokesperson Dan Fogleman, said the company “wants to be part of the national discussion about how to lower the high cost of health care.”
Moderator’s Comment: Does the retail industry need to develop a unified stance on addressing healthcare costs in the country? Should there be universal
access to healthcare? Who should be responsible for providing it? –
George Anderson – Moderator