retail news in context, analysis with attitude

• The Wall Street Journal reports that “citing what it claims is a history of employee abuses and discriminatory practices, a New York community group and roughly 100 East New York residents plan to protest Wal-Mart’s reported plans this afternoon near Spring Creek Towers, a large low and middle income housing complex formerly known as Starrett City, in Brooklyn. ‘We’re not opposed to development,’ said Jonathan Westin, an organizer for New York Communities for Change, a city-based non-profit.  ‘We just want stores that will pay people fair wages and treat the community the way it should be treated’.”

• Walmart-owned Asda Group has announced that it will “sell all privately prescribed cancer treatment drugs on a permanent 'not for profit' basis potentially saving thousands of pounds for sufferers.

John Evans, Asda’s Superintendent Pharmacist, said in a prepared statement: "The crippling cost of paying privately for cancer treatment has forced many people to spend their savings or even re-mortgage their house to pay for these essential drugs.

"We are the first retailer to recognise this injustice and to do something about it and we are calling on other retailers to follow our lead. It's a small step in the right direction but, our permanent 'not for profit' price on cancer treatment drugs makes them more accessible and can save people hundreds if not thousands of pounds."
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