On December 9 Starbucks workers at the Elmwood, New York store won their union election, joining IUF affiliate SEIU. Starbucks operates over 8,000 corporate stores across the United States and employs over 200,000 workers. The organizing drive began in August after workers began mobilizing around high workloads, COVID- related occupational health and safety concerns and low wages.
- The win comes after intense union-busting by the Starbucks corporation, including bullying, intimidation and personal lobbying by Starbucks founder Howard Schultz against the union
- In response to the win, the workers at the Elmwood store are now asking Starbucks to sign the “Starbucks Agreement for Equity & Sustainability” which asks the corporation to stop interfering in future union organizing efforts and to bargain with the workers in good faith
- Starbucks recently announced that it will raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour by next summer, a clear response to the SEIU’s Fight for 15 campaign
Lexi Rizzo, a NY Starbucks worker and union activist, stated, “It only takes one to break Starbucks’ anti-union front and show what we can do when we stand together. I cannot describe how good this victory feels.”