Macy’s recently announced that for the second time most of its 800 department stores will be open at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day, two hours earlier than last year.
The decision by Macy’s and other retailers to open earlier on Thanksgiving is not without controversy, and many critics are saying that opening stores on a celebrated American holiday is cutting into family time and keeping retail workers away from their families. While many retail workers have voiced their concerns about erratic scheduling and being forced to work on holidays, there’s only one way to ensure that workers have a say in whether or not they work—a union contract.
Thousands of Macy’s workers across the country are members of the UFCW and have a union contract that protects them on the job. Thanks to this contract, union workers at Macy’s have a say in their own scheduling and can decide whether they’d rather stay home on Thanksgiving with their families or work extra hours and earn the holiday or premium pay they negotiated in their contracts.
With shoppers expecting the same availability from brick and mortar retailers like Macy’s as they do from Amazon, a union contract makes all the difference in the quality of jobs in the retail industry.