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Protesters Demand WalMart Stay Out of New York City

by Chiara Wegener
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Protestors on the steps of City Hall
Katie Fisher

Union workers, local business owners, and elected officials gathered Thursday to demand Walmart stay out of East New York, Brooklyn.

Demonstrators gathered on the steps of New York's City Hall Thursday morning to demand that WalMart keep its stores out of the city.

Local business owners said that opening a WalMart in their neighborhood would shut them down.

"If WalMart comes to New York, I'm going to be out of business," said Louis Hernandez, owner of Associated Supermarket in East New York. "They come into our neighborhoods and don't care about the little guys like us who have been here for years, all they care about is stomping us out. There are thousands of stores just like mine that would be in danger if WalMart comes to New York."

Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer joined the protestors in criticizing WalMart's business practices, saying "If you think that you're going to be able to open up a big box store all in the quest for your corporate profits, you have another thing coming...it is not going to happen!"

But a WalMart spokesman said that 62 percent of small business owners in New York City are in favor of a store opening in the area. He noted that the store can be a "real solution" for New Yorkers looking to stretch their dollar.

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