Mexican Walmart Attempts to Pay Workers Using Walmart Vouchers


The Mexican Supreme Court of Justice [official website] on Thursday ruled [press release, in Spanish] that Wal-Mart de Mexico [corporate website; JURIST news archive] may not pay employees in part with vouchers redeemable only at its stores. The court nullified the employment contract of a worker who challenged the voucher payments, finding that they violated Article 123 of the Mexican Constitution [PDF text], which guarantees the right to “dignified and socially useful work.” The court likened the arrangement, which Wal-Mart called the Plan of Social Welfare, to a practice that prevailed during the dictatorship of Porfirio Diaz [profile], who ruled Mexico [JURIST news archive] in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Until the practice was abolished by the current constitution in 1917, workers could be forced to buy exorbitantly priced goods at company stores. AFP has more. AP has additional coverage. From Mexico City, El Universal has local coverage.


  1. Uncle Tupelo: Coalminers.
    “I was born in old Kentucky
    in a coal camp, born and bred
    I know about old beans
    bulldog gravy and cornbread
    I know how the miners work and slave
    in the coalmines every day
    for a dollar in the company store
    for that is all they pay”

  2. Our masters really won’t be happy until we return to the “Pullman-Porter” days of living in a company town, being paid in credits at the company store and being permanently in debt to the company so we can never leave and our children inherit that debt so the chain cannot be broken.

  3. Actually, Walmart is sort of doing this in the U.S., when you think that its employees are paid so poorly that they qualify for food-stamps and Medicaid. If you can ONLY afford to shop at crappy Walmart, than you really ARE only working for the company store.

  4. i’m not surprised, i’ve been following walmart’s shady practices since 2002 when I compiled a report on their workforce. Nickle and Dimed has a great chapter on working for them but I feel like the authors experience is null because she had a backup emergency fund.

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