Walmart Responds to Government Unfair Labor Charges

Twinkies Wal-Mart
APA worker collects shopping carts in the parking lot at Wal-Mart, Friday, July 12, 2013, in Bristol, Pa.

By Sam Hananel

WASHINGTON (AP) - Federal officials filed a formal complaint Wednesday charging that Wal-Mart violated the rights of workers who took part in protests and strikes against the company.

The National Labor Relations Board says Wal-Mart illegally fired, disciplined or threatened more than 60 employees in 14 states for participating in legally protected activities to complain about wages and working conditions at the nation's largest retailer.

The labor board's general counsel first laid out similar charges in November, but held off on filing a complaint while trying to work out a settlement with Wal-Mart. Those discussions were not successful, government officials said in a statement.