HOUSTON -

Black Friday shoppers were met by picketers at a Houston-area Wal-Mart on Friday.

The Wal-Mart in the Heights is Houston's newest store.

On one of the busiest shopping days of the year, several dozen picketers gave a blunt message to eager customers.

"We are calling for customers to be aware of the high price workers are paying for the low price consumers are paying," said a Wal-Mart protester.

Wal-Mart associates said they are underpaid, lack decent healthcare and can't unionize. They said it's not just bad for Wal-Mart employees, it's bad for everyone.

"When you have set the standard that low, other jobs are going to follow Wal-Mart," Hope Sanford said.

However, nobody in the Heights store picket line was actually a Wal-Mart employee. A passerby noticed that fact.

"I don't know anything about their wages. I just question why there are no employees standing with you," the passerby said.

With police hovering in the background to prevent trespassing, holiday shopping continued at full force Friday.