Bringing Joy and Jobs Home with American Plastic Toys

By Dawn Henry
December 21, 2017
Two young girls are playing with pink and purple dollhouse in a bedroom

There are many ways we bring each other joy during the holidays.

We visit family, bake cookies and holiday treats, and of course, give each other gifts. But you may be surprised to know that some of the presents you’re leaving under the tree are bringing joy in a completely different way: creating jobs across the country in communities just like yours.

Through my job buying toys for Walmart, I have a unique perspective into the gifts people give each other. Winter holidays are a big toy season in the retail business, and to make sure we have toys kids will love at an awesome price, we depend on toymakers just as committed to high levels of quality as we are. This year, one of those amazing suppliers was American Plastic Toys, who worked with us to create some of the season’s most popular toys like My Very Own Gourmet Kitchen and the “Spark. Imagine. Create.” Dollhouse – all here in the U.S.

Our work with American Plastic Toys may be one of the longest relationships between a manufacturer and a retailer – we’ve worked together since 1962, the year Walmart was founded. They even opened their second factory location to accommodate our growing needs in the ‘80s.

Today, they continue to grow with us as a part of our $250 billion investment in products that are made and assembled in the U.S. Between American Plastic Toys’ two facilities – one in Walled Lake, Michigan, and one in Olive Branch, Mississippi – 150 new American jobs were created this year.

Seeing the change our investment makes in people’s lives is personal for me. When I joined the Walmart team seven years ago, I was leaving the manufacturing industry and had experienced firsthand the devastating layoffs that follow factory closures. I knew that if I ever had the ability to make a difference, I would.

Supporting American jobs is the right thing to do not just to help my company meet its goals, but also as a way to invest in the towns and cities our customers call home. Through this holiday season and beyond, it’s incredible to see how much of what we do impacts the people in communities so close to us. We’re all American workers who want the best for our friends and families, and it’s exciting to experience how we all come together to make a change.