Thousands of employees for Target are upset they'll have to work during part of their Thanksgiving holiday, and have signed a petition stating just that.
Forget Black Friday, some stores are opening even earlier this holiday shopping season. Target, Macy's, Best Buy and Kohl's all say they will be opening their doors at midnight Thursday. Wal-Mart and Tanger Outlets will open at 10 p.m.
More than 100,000 Target employees have signed a petition asking Target not to open at midnight on Thanksgiving. The petition asks the company to open its stores at 5am on Friday instead, in order to allow workers to spend more time with their families.
Anthony Hardwick, a Target employee in Omaha, is the creator of the petition. He's told CNN and the Huffington Post, "You know, I think it's a little unreasonable to expect their employees to come into the store at 11 pm and still operate under the assumption that they'll somehow be able to have a Thanksgiving dinner... We don't mind hard work, but cutting into our holidays is a step too far."
On the petition, Bryce Allison wrote, "It's a national holiday not a national shopping day... maybe try giving thanks for your employees that bring you so much money."
Scotty Brookie commented "Encouraging people to shop in the middle of the night is bizarre. And forcing employees to be there to help them, when they could be home with their families, is insensitive and cruel."
Newschannel 15 contacted the Target of Myrtle Beach, which will open at midnight. We were referred to their corporate communication office, and were told via e-mail that all employees working Thanksgiving would receive holiday pay, equivalent to time and a half.
Hardwick has said employees have to be at work at 11 p.m. Thanksgiving night.
Molly Snyder, Target Communications Manager told us via e-mail, "Our stores open at midnight. Most team members who are scheduled to work right at the opening will arrive shortly before then."
In reaction to the petition, Target issued NewsChannel 15 the following statement:
"Black Friday is one of the busiest and most competitive shopping days of the year. We have heard from our guests that they want to shop Target following their Thanksgiving celebrations rather than only having the option of getting up in the middle of the night. By opening at midnight, we are making it easier than ever to deliver on our guests wants and needs.
The team member you are referencing is not now, and has never been, scheduled to work on Thanksgiving or Black Friday at Target. Our understanding is that this team member also works full-time for another retailer. In early November, he informed his Target managers that he was scheduled to work at his other job on Black Friday and indicated that he needed the day off from Target. We honored that request. Target does our best to work around the schedules of all of our team members, making every effort to accommodate their requests. Target will offer holiday pay to all hourly team members who work on Thanksgiving Day."
What do you think? Do you agree with the Target employees who signed the petition? Are you going to be shopping at 10 or Midnight on Black Friday? Should retail workers have all of Thanksgiving off?