Staff for greater than 100 Starbucks areas nationwide are staging a strike on the corporate’s “Crimson Cup Day” on Thursday in protest of union-busting ways that the corporate has relentlessly unleashed on pro-union employees.
The “Crimson Cup Riot,” as employees have dubbed it, will see more than 2,000 workers on strike, the union says, with 112 shops on strike in dozens of cities from coast to coast. It’s the largest nationwide motion taken by Starbucks Staff United thus far, because the union comes up on the primary anniversary of its first shops voting to unionize.
“Crimson Cup Day” is usually one of the corporate’s most worthwhile days, when employees give prospects Starbucks-branded reusable pink vacation cups with sure purchases. Placing employees will as a substitute give out pink union-branded reusable cups to prospects “in response to Starbucks’ union-busting ways and refusal to cut price,” the union wrote.
“Whether or not it’s firing one in all my coworkers for sporting a suicide consciousness pin, how they’ve closed down a dozen areas within the strategy of unionizing, or how we’re being denied advantages that non-union shops are getting, Starbucks has left behind the very values that drew many people to the corporate within the first place,” mentioned union organizer and Buffalo barista Michelle Eisen in a press release. “You can’t be pro-LGTBQ, pro-BLM, pro-sustainability, and anti-union.”
“This Crimson Cup Day, we’re organizing for a voice on the job and a real seat on the desk,” Eisen continued.
The corporate has waged a relentless anti-union marketing campaign, racking up practically 40 complaints from the Nationwide Labor Relations Board (NLRB) encompassing tons of of alleged labor violations. This contains 4 requests for injunctions from the company — one of many strongest actions that labor officers can take in opposition to a union-busting firm.
Staff have frequently protested actions from the corporate, with dozens of strikes prior to now months; earlier this yr, employees in Boston waged a 64-day lengthy strike in protest of the corporate’s hourly availability coverage, and employees on the flagship roastery in New York Metropolis are presently within the fourth week of a strike as employees say the corporate has refused to repair mildew and mattress bug issues within the retailer.
The union has additionally been annoyed just lately as the corporate, after delaying contract negotiations for months, has been stonewalling employees who come to the bargaining desk, regardless of lots of them taking days off to cut price. Staff have reported that the corporate’s negotiators will stroll out of negotiations after simply minutes of being within the room, refusing to cut price.
“They do the identical factor in each session,” Eisen instructed The Washington Submit. “It’s additional delay ways. They’re legally obligated to point out as much as the desk, however they’re not achieved taking part in video games.”
The corporate’s union-busting marketing campaign isn’t only a downside for Starbucks employees, the union says — fairly, it’s an issue that impacts the whole labor motion as different firms be taught from Starbucks’s actions.
“Starbucks’s steady and lawless union busting has solid doubt on the way forward for the American labor motion. If Starbucks can break the legislation to stamp out their employees’ unionization efforts, they might be writing the playbook for numerous different firms to observe,” the union mentioned.
Staff hope that the “Crimson Cup Day” strike will show how important employees are within the firm’s profitability.
“One of many methods Starbucks makes their billions is by exploiting our labor, particularly on days like their well-known ‘Crimson Cup Day,’” mentioned Boston shift supervisor Willow Montana. “If the corporate received’t cut price in good religion, why ought to we come to work the place we’re understaffed, underpaid, and overworked?”
The protest has garnered the help of main progressive leaders like Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), who tweeted on Thursday, “I’m proud to face with Starbucks employees on strike at present throughout the nation. CEO Howard Schultz is illegally union busting and firing employees for organizing. Mr. Schultz, it’s time to acknowledge the shops that unionized and negotiate with employees in good religion.”