By Natalie McGuiggan
Walmart has announced that it will be closing four of its stores in Chicago, including three on the South and West Sides.
The stores that have been closed to the public since April 16, are located in Kenwood, Lakeview, Little Village, and one Supercenter in Chatham. However, Walmart made sure that the pharmacies at these locations remain open to serve patients for 30 days after the closing.
Walmart’s decision to close the stores was difficult, but necessary due to their consistent lack of profitability, the company said in a statement. Walmart claimed in its statement that the decision to close the stores was based on the fact that they “have not been profitable since we opened the first one nearly 17 years ago — these stores lose tens of millions of dollars a year, and their annual losses nearly doubled in just the last five years.”
For those wondering how this will affect the workers who relied on these locations for a living, Walmart stated that all associates will be able to transfer to another Walmart location, and that hiring managers from surrounding facilities will be there to help associates begin finding their next opportunity. Associates will be paid until August 11, 2023, unless transferred to another location during that time. If they do not transfer, eligible associates will still receive severance benefits. Walmart remains committed to its community investments in Chicago and will work with local leaders to find reuse options for the buildings.
The closure of these four locations will have a massive toll on their communities, but the continuous theft and security issues the company has been facing for years left them with no choice.