Large retailers don’t necessarily offer the best pay, but they do provide consistent employment for those who reliably show up to do their jobs. Plenty of people start or end their careers at businesses like Walmart where they can perform lower-demand job tasks and earn some money for their households.
While the average person probably thinks of Walmart work as relatively undemanding and therefore safe, the truth is that people get injured working at Walmart all the time, often because the business has failed to take necessary steps to keep its staff as safe as possible.
The failure to address known job risks in workplaces like large retail facilities is one reason why many people end up injured at work and dependent on workers’ compensation benefits until they recover. What kind of risks does Walmart fail to address for its employees?
Stocking injuries and warehouse risks
In New York in late 2022, a panel of three federal appeals judges ruled that Walmart had violated basic safety standards by failing to properly secure merchandise in warehouses, leading to a worker getting injured by boxes that fell over 40 feet.
In addition to this one case, there are hundreds of serious injuries that result from improper warehouse practices and the physical risks involved in restocking. When businesses fail to follow best practices, their workers can end up hurt.
Customer violence has been an increasing concern in retail environments in recent years, but very little is done by large companies to minimize the risks to their workers. There are many scenarios in which a customer or visitor to a retail establishment could become violent.
Perhaps they have an abusive relationship with your spouse or children, and when staff members attempt to intervene, they end up receiving the brunt of that individual’s rage. Maybe someone attempts to steal from the store, and employees get hurt as they intervene to protect the business. Workers deserve protection from such violence.
Slip-and-fall injuries are also a leading cause of worker injury, in no small part because people often must rush around retail establishments to get all of their work done. Ironically, workers’ compensation insurance protects employers from lawsuits even when they do something obviously negligent, like failing to institute preventative protocols for common injury sources.