Don't Just Take Our Word For It - New Yorkers Want Walmart

What Others Are Saying

Walmart in New York City

Frank Clark, an 80-year-old retiree who makes trips to New Jersey several times a month to go to Wal-Mart with his wife, Frances, 75, said he would love to have a store closer to his home, in Fort Hamilton, Brooklyn.

“Absolutely!” he said. “If you’re on a fixed income, it’s great.”

“I’ll tell you how good the savings are,” he added. “I drive over the Verrazano Bridge, I go over the Bayonne Bridge and I come here, and those two bridges cost me $17, plus the price of gas. And I still make out better buying here than if I did in my own neighborhood.”

“We plan to make sure that Walmart and the economic recovery ideas it represents comes into our community and starts to solve a very important problem, which is jobs. Let Walmart in the door so that our families can eat from the economic recovery that this will create for NY.”
Reginald Bowman
NYCHA Tenants Association

“Wal-Mart is putting in the time to get to know the community so they can better serve the neighborhood and that is what being a socially responsible corporation is about.”
Deidre Wade
Community Partners Association Commission

“Walmart wants to come here and provide union construction jobs and permanent positions that offer pay wages equal to or higher than many of their competitors, and allow people to save substantially on their grocery bills. Why should my constituents – many of whom are on fixed incomes – pay more for a gallon of milk or a loaf of bread? It’s not the job of politicians or special interests groups, especially in today’s economy, to block economic development.”
Councilman Eric Ulrich, Ozone Park
Queens Ledger
February 9, 2011

“Walmart is coming to New York City and paying $12 an hour. That’s higher than the living wage bill that my co-Council members are sponsoring. A job is a job. If they hire 1,000 people they would be taking 1,000 people off of the welfare list. If it is such a terrible company to work for, why do 1.4 million people work there? I want Walmart anywhere in the five boroughs. But I would gladly take them in my district.”
Councilman Eric Ulrich
February 24, 2011

“And as far as I can tell, my neighborhood has no problem with it. We are not supposed to be giving our stamp of approval or disapproval to businesses. That’s not our job.”
City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr.
Crain’s New York Business
February 23, 2011

“The City Council has no business blocking economic development, especially during these tough economic times. If Walmart wants to come to New York City, the politicians, lobbyists, and talking heads should get out of their way. The people of this city deserve choices, and they expect nothing less. If you build it, they will come.”
Peter Koo represents the 20th City Council District based in Flushing and Eric Ulrich, City Council Member Ozone Park
Times Newsweekly
February 10, 2011

“East New York is suffering. And with this economy, people want to get a good bang for their buck. At the end of the day, you have to think with your pocket.”
Christopher Banks, Executive Director East New York United Concerned Citizens, an antipoverty group
The New York Times
February 11, 2011

“Wal-Mart should be welcome in New York City, according to readers of TheStreet. In a poll last week, 75.2% of those taking the survey said the discount behemoth should come to the Big Apple, while 24.8% were opposed to the company placing roots in any of the boroughs.”
Jeanine Poggi, Journalist, The Street
The Street
February 9, 2011

“Wal-Mart should be allowed the opportunity to set up shop wherever it desires.”
John Tammy, Forbes Blogger
Forbes Blogs
February 5, 2011

“I think it would be great. It just gives another level of retail. You don’t have to go to Macy’s, which is more upscale. You would be able to go to Wal-Mart, [which is] more mid-scale. I shop at the Wal-Mart in New Jersey sometimes.”
Anthony Imbiola, 45, Carpenter, Staten Island
The Epoch Times
February 7, 2011

“I think it’s long overdue. They’re everywhere else. I think it will drive some more competition in this city among retailers and hopefully bring in more jobs.”
David Goetz, 31, Retail, Long Island
The Epoch Times
February 7, 2011

“Vedder and Cox, in their economic analysis of the effects of Wal-Mart, found that ‘communities with new Wal-Mart stores typically enjoy increased employment and incomes after the store opens.’”
Nick Schulz, Blogger
The Enterprise Blog
February 7, 2011

“Although Walmart stands to profit by opening a store in America’s largest city, the city stands to profit more. Right now, if you want a bargain, you have to drive to New Jersey — and who collects the sales tax on that transaction? New Jersey, of course.”
C. Honadel, Staten Island
NY Post
February 8, 2011

“As our City Council decides if Walmart can open a store in the five boroughs, New Yorkers continue to pay 33 percent more for their groceries and deal with unemployment.”
David Bergstein, Manhattan
NY Post
February 8, 2011

“I know of many union shops that pay less than Walmart. And, out of those lower wages, workers are forced to pay dues. Maybe our elected officials should stop catering to union leaders and think of workers. Let’s welcome Walmart.”
Earl Ireland, Ozone Park
NY Post
February 8, 2011

“We need jobs and Walmart would give people in the community the opportunity to earn a decent wag. We’ll worry about unions later; let’s get the jobs here first.”
Tony Herbert, Activist
Brooklyn Paper
February 8, 2011

“I think a lot of the people that are against it are union people, they are politically driven. I’m driven by my wallet.”
Queens Ledger
February 9, 2011

“Well, I think Wal-Mart should come. Their prices are cheaper, and it brings jobs.”
Joseph Quinlivan, a 50-year resident of Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn
Gotham Gazette
February 14, 2011

“I don’t think anyone outside the communiuty should have a say in this. The councilman wants it. The people need it.”
February 14, 2011

“Where in the zoning laws is there a statement that says ‘except for Wal-Mart?’ All the union-liberal Wal-Mart haters think that should be special laws and zoning regulations that single out the one company that they use as a symbol of all that is wrong in the world.”
February 14, 2011

“I am praying they put a Super Walmart in East New York or anywhere in Brooklyn or one of the boroughs. It would save me travel time but I love Walmart and dont see what the fuss about. If you dont like it dont patronize it.Simple.It beats that ugly empty lot and would provide some much needed jobs. I would take a job without a union over no job at all.”
February 14, 2011

“Wake up Christine Quinn and your posse, we want Walmart. Now is the time for those of us who want this to happen to contact our City Council members and remind them that they work for us. I hope we can make room in Flushing for Walmart.”
Mary Ann Boroz, Flushing
Queens Courier
February 23, 2011

“The pain is here, it is now. It’s not being caused by Walmart. Walmart’s not here!”
Andy Sullivan, Construction Worker/Founder of 911 Hard Hats, in testimony regarding a 30% unemployment rate among unionized construction workers

“We have become a society of bargain shoppers and having a Walmart locally will definitely be beneficial. The small businesses that can adapt to the socioeconomic times that we live in will find a way to survive. Wal-Mart is just an alternative destination, not the only destination.”
Courtney Laidlaw, Resident

“I would love to have [Walmart] here, absolutely. They truly have the best prices. We’ve done a lot of big purchases there, TVs, GPSs. Look, Staten Island is a very crowded place. There are not enough stores for the people.”
Ilycia Chiaromonte, Westerleigh

“Why be concerned about Walmart? Why now? The council has been allowing big chain stores in the city forever. In my neighborhood, there’s a Duane Reade on every corner. How has that been good for the small drug stores?”
Unidentified Manhattan Woman

“Wal-Mart is what we need. We need more. We need a bigger variety.”
LaShaun Munford, Shopper

“Everybody deserves an opportunity to shop where they want to shop. Cheaper groceries are better for everybody. We have people who are unemployed. We have a lot of seniors who can’t afford these prices.”
Belinda Allen, Queens, mother of three

“It means cheap prices and more jobs for us. Walmart’s good for struggling families like us. We want Walmart here.”
Unidentified Brooklyn Couple

“We as a community are suffering. We need jobs now for our community and we need people to survive.”
Tony Herbert, Walmart 2 New York City, East New York Activist

“To bring a Wal-Mart to Brooklyn, that’s tremendous! We would love it. Bring it on!”
Patricia Randall, Resident

“You know, this business has been here over 30 years and we own the building and everything. So, I mean, sales may go down a bit because people are curious, but I don’t think it’s much. We’re not that worried.”
Unidentified Owner of an East New York Grocery Store

“Given Walmart’s longstanding relationships with New York City customers, associates, suppliers and nonprofits, we have a vested interest in spurring economic development here and creating opportunities for New Yorkers.”
Unidentified Building Trades Spokesman

“I don’t think there’s any question Walmart will eventually open up in the city of New York. It’s a foregone conclusion, and that’s primarily because the public wants the option to shop there.”
Steven Spinola, President, Real Estate Board of New York

“Giving to food banks and supporting local agriculture are two things I care about deeply. Those two things have me thinking I might need to re-evaluate my extreme dislike for Walmart.”
Robin Shreeves, Blogger for the Mother Nature Network

“You’ve got Duane Reade, Costco, Target, CVS, T.J. Maxx, Staples…. If Walmart wants to move in, let it compete. This is America. It’s a free enterprise.”
Eduardo Giraldo, Vice President, Queens Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

“Why should my grandmother, why should any of my constituents—who are living on fixed incomes, perhaps—have to pay more for a gallon of milk, for a loaf of bread, for coffee, for cereal, for the goods that we rely on on a day-to-day basis? It’s not the job of any politicians…to discourage economic development.”
Eric Ulrich, Councilmember (R-Queens)

“We have to begin to develop a different perspective. [Walmart] stores are throughout New York State. People like to shop there. And with the passage of my Wage Theft Prevention Act, those not adhering to the law can be aggressively prosecuted. At some point there has to be a conversation to see what it would take to permit Walmart into New York City, and what they are prepared to do to be good corporate citizens and neighbors.”
State Senator Diane Savino (D-North Shore/Brooklyn)

“I had been opposed, but I am kind of changing my mind. We need a discussion about fair labor practices and about the effect on mom and pop stores. But we want our consumers to have more choices.”
Assemblyman Matthew Titone (D-North Shore)

“I have an open mind. I know there is push-back from the unions and we have to see about the affect it will have on other stores. But when you see the number of Walmarts there are, there seems to be an awful lot of people who want their services. Staten Islanders shop with their feet and leave the city and state to go elsewhere to get the better prices.”
Assemblyman Lou Tobacco (R-South Shore)

“We have half-a-million people who need another choice of where to shop. [Walmart] will create jobs.”
Borough President James Molinaro

“Walmart provides goods to people at an affordable price. They provide job opportunities. I don’t see why government should be using politics to get in the way of shopping convenience for people.”
State Senator Andrew Lanza (R-Staten Island)

“Of course it would depend where it went and the impact on the community and traffic. But my constituents are using Walmart like crazy. Clearly people want options where to shop.”
Councilman Vincent Ignizio (R-South Shore)

“I used to be not a big fan, but I don’t know where I am, in this economy. If they can find a piece of property and build it, as of right, they should be able to build a store and let the marketplace take it from there.”
Councilman James Oddo (R-Mid-Island)

“I am open to it, but I have strong concerns. But my job is to represent the people and I am willing to look at both sides of this and do what is best for my district.”
Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R-East Shore/Brooklyn)

“You should let the marketplace decide. Anybody who has tried to manage the marketplace, it has not turned out very well. I think the Soviet Union is as good an example as you’d ever need of that.”
Michael Bloomberg, New York City Mayor

“The largest corporation in America is launching a new initiative that has the potential to transform the marketplace and to help American families put healthier food on their tables.”
Michelle Obama, First Lady of the United States

“I agree completely with Assemblyman Darryl Towns’ assessment (‘It’s Not About Walmart,’ PostOpinion, Dec. 17). It is wrongheaded to just say no to Walmart. The political class should be good listeners and then act boldly and decisively in generating growth and employment opportunity for the local community. Creating and preserving jobs is essential to keeping a community vibrant. It is also essential for retaining a young population to want to live and thrive in the community.”
Jon Salony, Manhattan

“A Walmart in East New York could be the start of something big for 8 million consumers residing in the five boroughs, and New York City could easily support a dozen stores. This would provide work for construction contractors, their employees and thousands of the 9.6 percent of New Yorkers currently out of work. The city would benefit by millions in sales, payroll and real-estate tax revenue. Walmart consumers get a better bang for their bucks, and many New Yorkers can’t afford to pay extra. They need the great prices, quality merchandise and affordable food and drug options that Walmart offers. Consumers have voted with their feet, making Walmart the top retail merchant today. It is time to allow Walmart the opportunity to compete in New York City’s marketplace.”
Larry Penner, Great Neck

“[Walmart] is ‘very receptive to discussions’ with businesses that ‘are interested in advancing projects and entering into agreements to assure that the construction jobs created will be for union members of the building and construction trades.’”
Building and Construction Trades Council
Wall Street Journal

“This city does not have the legal right to prevent any business that can come here that complies with our laws. And if Wal-Mart wants to go into a place as of right they have a right to do that. I’ve always thought that the more competition the better. People that live in this city are going outside the city to shop at Wal- Marts. So if they’re going to shop at Wal-Marts… they might as well have the jobs here and the tax revenues here. But the city does not have the right to say to one business, ’You can’t come here.’ And we’re not going to do that.”
Mayor Bloomberg/Spokesman Andrew Brent
New York Daily News Blog – 04/28/10
New York Daily News Blog – 06/23/10

“That’s Great, the more competition the better. People are going to shop at Walmart anyway, we might as well get the jobs and tax revenue.”
Mayor Bloomberg/Spokesman Andrew Brent
NY Government Examiner

“People that live in this city are going outside the city to shop at Wal-Mart, so if they’re going to shop at Wal-Mart they might as well live here. They might as well have the jobs here and the tax revenues here. The City does not have the right to say to one business, ‘You can’t come here,’ and we’re not going to do that.”
Mayor Bloomberg/Spokesman Andrew Brent
New York Post

“As a shopper, I say that unions destroy companies. I go to union stores and there is no one to help you. Go to non-union stores and there are workers all over the place. Do you have any idea how many jobs New York City Walmarts would create? Keeping these stores out of New York leaves all the more jobs and money for us here in New Jersey. Just look at all the New York cars on Saturday and Sunday over here. Unions are doing a good job for the working people — of New Jersey.”
John Bond, Fairfield, NJ Resident
New York Post 09/02/10

“I have four kids, and some day they are going to need jobs. It’s a fight to survive, and Wal-Mart might give them more options for jobs.”

06/27/10New York Post, Dawn Black

“We shouldn’t tell businesses that want to invest and create jobs in New York City that they can’t,” said spokesman Andrew Brent. “New Yorkers are already voting with their feet when they drive outside the City to shop at stores that aren’t in the five boroughs” that make up New York.”
Mayor Bloomberg/Spokesman Andrew Brent
Wall Street Journal

“If you would do surveys in, for example, southeast Queens, people are going to Nassau County to shop at Wal-Mart. If you do surveys in Lower Manhattan, they’re driving over to New Jersey. Bloomberg said Wal-Mart has a legal right to open in the Big Apple, adding that the company provides a large number of entry- level jobs.”

Mayor Bloomberg/Spokesman Andrew Brent
WCBS 880

“You’re not going to stop, and nor should you stop, people from having the opportunity to shop where they want to shop. The city should not be in the business of picking and choosing who is there.”
Mayor Bloomberg/Spokesman Andrew Brent
New York Times

“They have very good deals. Very, very good deals. And they sell everything.”
Brooklyn Resident

“I think that it would be a big opportunity for workers like myself to get in and earn money by working at Wal-Mart.”
Brooklyn Resident


“In this economy, we can’t be saying no to anything. People need work,” said Rodrick Dawkins with his wife, Chyann, and son Rodrick Jr. “I see it as something that could really help the community.”
Rodrick Dawkins
New York Post

“I don’t think they asked the community what they wanted. They don’t understand what it’s like to be out of a job, or to need a job,” Caraballo said. “They should have done research on the community before they started protesting against it.” (Speaking to Wal-mart detractors)
Rebecca Caraballo
New York Post

“Provide us with jobs. Once you provide us with jobs, you provide us with a place to live.”
Rev. Leonard Hatter

“Why are politicians protecting New York from Walmart? Because of United Federation of Teachers, Public Employees Federation and all the other unions. Before you pull the lever the next time you vote, remember the names of politicians who do not want you to have low-cost goods for your families and the jobs a Walmart would bring. They choose union votes and money over what is best for you and your family. They care about their own survival over your needs and the benefits a Walmart would bring to the city.”
John Kasprzak, Glens Falls Resident
New York Post

“Main Street is alive and well. Good retailers thrive on competition. More and more, we realize that retail is the industry that is driving the growth of jobs and the economy. What we often don’t think of is that 95 percent of retailers are independent retailers, not big-box stores. The road to recovery is running through retail. Many small retailers do a very good job in terms of differentiating themselves from larger retailers. They’re able to leverage their community ties, which the larger retailers aren’t able to do.”
Scott Krugman, VP of industry public relations at the National Retail Federation
Business News Daily

“Aren’t Charles Barron and Christine Quinn Democrats? I thought Democrats were champions of the poor, but it seems more like they are shills for the unions. East New Yorkers are hurting for jobs. By opening a Walmart in their area, there’s a chance for at least 300 jobs, plus the opportunity to shop at a low-priced retailer. Who is throwing up a roadblock for this to happen? None other than the phonies who claim to be looking out for our interests. The unions have these clowns in their hip pocket, and that’s the reason they are against this project. For all the City Council’s uselessness, this is the one time it can be of help to the citizens. Yet, the council is blowing it for the sake of union funding at election time. I hope all New Yorkers remember this and send them packing.”
Chris Michaels, Morganville, NJ Resident
New York Post

“This is a time when the economy is bad and a lot of my constituents are looking for jobs. We have to begin to think out of the box and look at some different opportunities.”

12/12/10New York Times, Darryl C. Towns, State Assemblyman

“Jobs equal public safety. Jobs equal public health. Jobs equal economic stimulus. Jobs equal opportunities for individuals to be integrated back into their community.”
Dr. Divine Pryor, Center for NuLeadership on Urban Solutions
1010WINS Queens Chronicle

“People are very happy about it, it was all the talk at last night’s Democratic Club meeting. A few people mentioned that there would be a possibility of jobs here if Walmart came. The fact that they are non-union didn’t even come into the conversation. People are desperate for jobs and what is not now on their top priority list is whether something is union or not.”
Marie Purnell, former president of the Spring Creek Towers Tenants Association
New York Magazine

“Competition means people have to step up and compete or it’s not going to work out. I don’t think government should say that we’re going to make sure people have to pay more or travel farther because we want to protect certain types of establishments.”
Steven Spinola, President of the Real Estate Board of New York
New York Times

“Politicians aren’t protecting all New Yorkers from Walmart, only those who live in New York City (“Who’s Afraid of Walmart?” Ginger Adams Otis and Susannah Cahalan, PostScript, June 27). The politicians who control New York City are in bed with the unions, and unions hate Walmart, as do most Democrats. They view Walmart as “the evil empire,” since Walmart doesn’t offer all its employees health insurance. I love Walmart. Its prices can’t be beat. My only complaint is that there’s no Super Walmart close by.”
Bret Wallach, Hicksville, NY Resident
New York Post