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Don't Let Thanksgiving Become 'Black Thursday': Target Employees

Tuesday, 13 Nov 2012 | 8:05 AM ET
AP

Retailers are hoping to get holiday-shoppers into their stores right after they finish their Thanksgiving turkey, but some store employees are pushing back.

Target, Toys R Us, Wal-Mart, Sears and Gap re among the retailers that will throw open their doors to deal-hungry consumers on Thanksgiving Day.

Target is planning to open at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving, while Wal-Mart and Toys R Us will be open at 8 p.m. (Read More: Get That Turkey to Go — Black Friday Arrives Earlier.)

Joe Feldman, an analyst at Telsey Advisory Group, said the earlier opening opening should help retailers grab market share.

Retailers Killing Thanksgiving?
According to the National Retail Federation, nearly 25 percent of Black Friday shoppers hit the store by midnight on Thursday last year. reports CNBC's Courtney Reagan; and Joe Feldman, Telsey Advisory Group, weighs in.

"It certainly extends the holiday season a little bit longer and it is really about getting that sale before your competitor does," he said. "It may not mean incrementally more sales but it could definitely capture more for retailers that are open." (Read More: 10 Gifts Gadget Lovers Will Love 2012.)

Not all employees are thrilled about having to come to work on the holiday.

Casey St. Clair, a Target employee in California, has started an online petition sking the retail giant to save Thanksgiving from Black Friday creep. The petition has reached 168,000 signatures as of Monday.

She told CNBC's "Closing Bell" on Monday "In the almost six years since I've been there, I've seen the opening creep back every year."

Employee Asks Target to 'Save Thanksgiving'
Not everyone is thrilled about stores being open on Thanksgiving, with Casey St. Clair, a Target employee, and Stacey Widlitz, S.W. Retail Advisors.

St. Clair said on Thanksgiving, "retail is not a necessary service that needs to be open."

Jennifer Ann, another Target employee, also has a petition calling on Target to save Thanksgiving for employees. "Family has always been important to me and Thanksgiving is all about family," she wrote. "I love seeing family that we haven't seen in years and spending time with each other on the only day when we can all get together. Last year, it became clear to me that for some large retailers, this holiday isn't about family or being grateful at all."

In a statement, Target said its "opening time was carefully evaluated with the expectations of our guests and the needs of our business and team in mind."

While opening on Thanksgiving may be giving the customer what he or she wants, retail analyst Stacey Widlitz warned that deals will be staggered throughout the day and some shoppers may come away disappointed.

Nonetheless, "Black Friday sales are 10 percent of holiday sales," Widlitz noted. "So, if you're the first out there, you'll gain market share."

-By Justin Menza, CNBC News Writer

Questions? Comments? Email us at consumernation@cnbc.com.

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