Huffpost New York

Union Members Support Wal-Mart, Says Wal-Mart Poll

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WALMART

Wal-Mart and workers' unions have a sea of bad blood between them.

But, according to a new poll commissioned by Wal-Mart, three-quarters of union members surveyed were all for the mega retail chain opening in New York City.

In a not completely unrelated story, Wal-Mart announced that it had reached a five-year agreement with the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York to do all original construction and renovations at any stores it might open in the city.

The poll results come on the same day the City Council is slated to hold a meeting to hear concerns from residents and small businesses about the possibility of Wal-Mart stores coming to New York -- a hearing which Wal-Mart executives will not be present for.

Also on hand will be protestors both in support of and against the proposed opening. Included in the former will be ultra-conservative pundit Pamela Gellar's crew which will show their support of Wal-Mart, and also be there to protest the proposed Islamic center near ground zero (see confounding flier).

One potential location the retail giant is eying is off the Belt Parkway in East New York. Mark Tanis, owner of Shopper's World in East New York, is scared Wal-Mart will destroy his business.

"They are a monster that is going to eat us up," Tanis said. "A jacket I'm selling for $24.99, they could easily come and sell that for $15."

Public advocate Bill De Blasio shares Tanis' concerns. De Blasio conducted a study that shows, when Wal-Mart moves into a neighborhood, it often results in a net loss of jobs.

"In Chicago just a few years ago, Wal-Mart came in and put 82 businesses out of business," De Blasio said.

Council President Christine Quinn and De Blasio have lead the charge against Wal-Mart with Mayor Bloomberg in support of the retailer opening in New York.

Brooklyn resident LaShaun Munford said she can't wait to see a Wal-Mart in her community. "Wal-Mart is what we need," Munford said. "We need more. We need a bigger variety."

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