People are chanting and holding signs in front of Starbucks in New York, Thursday, November 17, 2022. Starbucks employees at his more than 100 stores in the US said they plan to go on strike Thursday. The unionization of the company’s stores began at the end of last year. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
United States (AP) – Starbucks employees went on strike Thursday at more than 100 stores in the United States in the biggest labor action since the company’s campaign to unionize its stores began late last year.
The strike coincides with Starbucks’ annual Red Cup Day, offering free reusable cups to customers who order holiday drinks. The employee says this is one of his busiest days of the year. Starbucks declined to disclose how many red cups it plans to distribute.
Employees say they want better pay, more consistent schedules and higher staffing at busy stores. According to Starbucks Workers United, the group organizing the effort, stores in 25 states were scheduled to participate in the labor action. Strikers are handing out their own red cups with the Union’s logo on them.
Starbucks, which opposes the union effort, said it was aware of the strike and respected the right of employees to protest legally. I pointed out what was happening.
“We remain committed to all of our partners and will continue to work together to make Starbucks the company that works for everyone,” the company said in a statement Thursday.
Some workers plan to picket all day, while others have shorter strikes. The union said its goal was to close stores during the strike, noting that the company is so busy that it usually struggles with staffing during Red Cup Day.
Willow Montana, shift manager at a Starbucks store in Brighton, Massachusetts, planned a strike after Starbucks failed to start negotiations with the store despite a successful union vote in April. .
“Why should we come to an understaffed, underpaid, overworked workplace if the company won’t bargain in good faith?” Montana said.
Others, including Michelle Eisen, who unionized at one of the first unionized stores in Buffalo, New York, said workers were angry when Starbucks promised higher wages and benefits to non-union stores. said that Starbucks says it is complying with the law and cannot give union stores wage increases without negotiation.
At least 257 Starbucks stores have voted to unionize since the end of last year, according to the National Labor Relations Commission. At 57 stores, workers voted not to join the union.
Starbucks and unions have begun contract negotiations at 53 stores, with 13 more sessions scheduled, Starbucks Workers United said. No agreement has ever been reached.
This process is controversial. Earlier this week, the NLRB regional director filed an injunction in federal court, alleging that Starbucks violated labor laws when it fired a union organizer in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The regional director asked the court to direct Starbucks to reinstate its employees and stop interfering in the national union movement.
This is the fourth time the NLRB has asked federal courts to intervene. In August, a federal judge ruled that Starbucks must reinstate seven of his union organizers who were fired in Memphis, Tennessee. A similar case in Buffalo has yet to be decided, but a federal judge ruled against his NLRB in the Phoenix case.
Meanwhile, Starbucks asked the NLRB to temporarily suspend all union elections in its U.S. stores, citing allegations from board employees that local officials improperly coordinated with union organizers. I requested. A decision in that case is pending.