Work Thanksgiving or lose your job?Posted: Updated:
PHOENIX -- Kmart will open its doors at 6 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day and remain open for 42 hours. While the company claims it tries to fill the slots with volunteers or seasonal hires, workers are reporting that if they don't show up, they'll lose their jobs.
Jillian Fisher started a petition on Coworker.org asking Kmart to give her mother and other employees the flexibility to take the holiday off.
"Nobody should have to decide whether they see their family or fear losing their job," Fisher said over the phone.
She says her mother has worked at Kmart for more than two decades and didn't have the option of taking the holiday off this year.
Fisher's mother is not alone; the nationwide campaign has more than 5,000 signatures and testimonials from other Kmart employees.
The messages reportedly came directly from Kmart human resources, saying "no time off" and "requesting off is not allowed."
3TV is still waiting for a response from Kmart.
Meantime, Fisher is hoping her crusade helps encourage the company to hire seasonal help.
"It's a pretty simple message that we're trying to get across, which is just allow it to be a volunteer option," Fisher said.
Joseph Huerta is choosing to work the holiday but agrees it should be up to the employee.
"It should be an option," he said. "Honestly, working is not bad because I like working, but it definitely should be an option."