By Paul Kurtz

By Paul Kurtz

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The retailing leviathan Walmart has been on an internal-promotions binge this year, and today a corporate executive visited the Walmart store in South Philadelphia to personally promote six employees there.

“She is being promoted today to a full-time associate position in our produce department, so, congratulations!” said senior vice president Julie Murphy during this rally-the-troops event for the start of the holiday season.

Murphy talked about Walmart’s plan to promote 25,000 more workers, (“associates” in Walmart parlance), with higher pay and more responsibilities, before the end of the year.

The retail giant’s goal for 2013  is to promote a total of 160,000 associates.

The ceremony comes amid growing criticism that overall, Walmart, the world’s largest retail chain, does not pay a liveable wage — less than $25,000 a year — and keeps too many of its employees on part-time status.

They are claims that Murphy disputes.

“We do know that over 70 percent of our associates, after their first year of employment with us, make over 25 thousand,” she said.

Top Content On CBSPhilly

Watch & Listen LIVE