A Wal-Mart warehouse in Elwood, Ill., seems to be popping up in the news quite often.

Surely everyone, unless you’ve been living in a cave since the dawn of the 21st century, knows Wal-Mart is the scapegoat for all that is wrong with corporate America. We hear the same regurgitations every time: They pay low wages, and they drive mom-and-pop stores out of business.

The conglomerate also exploits its workers.

Or do they?

By "they", I mean Wal-Mart itself.

Here's a review of what’s been happening with the Elwood warehouse.

February 2011

April 2011

There’s a recurring theme here, and I’m not drinking the anti-Wal-Mart Kool-Aid this time.

In all three cases, Wal-Mart was not the one being sued. It was the staffing agencies.

Chris Williams, the attorney representing the plaintiffs in the Select Remedy lawsuit, said the agency itself is responsible for the alleged wage dispute, but faults Wal-Mart for contracting with them. He said that big companies like Wal-Mart “pit smaller temp agencies against each other to get the lowest price,” and will do whatever it takes to drive costs down and cheat workers.

And the blame goes back to Wal-Mart.

The Warehouse Workers for Justice say that many businesses in Will County, where this Wal-Mart is located, operate on a perma-temp system, using temporary workers rather than direct hires more often than not.

Somehow Wal-Mart keeps running into problems with the agencies it hires to provide its workers. I suggest they research the companies they're going through a little more next time. And get rid of Schneider Logistics, while they're at it. It seems like some bad juju there.

If there’s anything to accuse Wal-Mart of, it is simply poor judgment.

Tags: News, Staffing Firms, Illinois, Wal-Mart, Temp agencies, Perma-temp, Warehouse Workers for Justice, Chris Williams, Elwood, Reliable Staffing Group, Schneider Logistics, Select Remedy, Simos Insourcing Solutions, Wal-Mart warehouse