More than 11K apply for jobs at D.C.’s new Wal-Mart stores

Job applicants fill out forms outside a Wal-Mart hiring center at 900 2nd Street NE Monday. The retailer has opened two hiring centers in the District to help fill 600 jobs at two new stores. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)

WASHINGTON – Wal-Mart shouldn’t have any trouble staffing two new “super centers” it plans to open in Washington, D.C., by year’s end after it received what it calls an “amazing” response from potential employees.

From cashier to management, 600 positions will staff Wal-Mart’s new stores in the burgeoning NoMa neighborhood at 1st and H streets Northeast and in upper Northwest at Georgia and Missouri avenues.

A promotional video on the company’s website says Wal-Mart received more than 11,000 applications within the first week of opening two D.C. hiring centers in late September. The video’s description says “the local response was amazing.”

Watch the promotional video below:

Wal-Mart has plans in various states of development for additional stores in areas of the city poorly served by major retailers. All the locations would include a grocery and general merchandise.

There are two locations in Ward 7: one at Good Hope Road and Alabama Avenue Southeast and the other at East Capitol and 58th streets. The Ward 4 location is at Riggs Road and South Dakota Avenue in Northeast.

Wal-Mart has plans for a sixth location in a development on New York Avenue at Blandensburg Road Northeast, but it’s on hold because the developer lost a deal with Lowe’s to co-anchor the location.

Wal-Mart tells the Washington Post it still is committed to building a store on the New York Avenue site.

Wal-Mart threatened to cancel future projects in D.C. when the council considered and then passed a law requiring big box stores to pay workers at least $12.50 an hour including benefits.

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray vetoed that bill, but the minimum wage issue is far from dead.

Later this month, lawmakers in D.C. as well as Montgomery and Prince George’s counties will consider legislation to boost minimum wages incrementally for all workers in each jurisdiction to $11.50 by 2016.

In both Maryland and Virginia, the minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. The D.C. Minimum wage currently is $8.25 an hour.

D.C.’s unemployment rate is 8.7 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The U.S. unemployment rate is 7.3 percent.

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