Workers at a seventh Starbucks in the Chicago area announced their intention to unionize on Mondaythe second implantation in less than a week.
The Bucktown Cafe, located on Armitage and Hoyne Avenues, joins four others in the city – Hyde Park, Logan Square, Edgewater and Downtown – and one each in the western suburb of La Grange and the northwest suburb of Carey. All seven are seeking representation from the Chicago and Midwest Regional Joint Board of Workers United, an SEIU affiliate.
“During the pandemic, Starbucks generated record profits while partners in stores across the country were subjected to levels of risk considered acceptable by those privileged to work from home,” wrote one. group of workers in an open letter to Starbucks’ new interim CEO, Howard Schultz, was released Monday afternoon. “While our partners have made concerted efforts every day to maintain a healthy and positive work environment, we believe there is little we can do for ourselves without the protections and indemnities that a union is empowered to provide. to supply.”
Nationwide, workers at seven Starbucks locations have successfully voted to join a union and more than 150 have open cases with the National Labor Relations Board, according to the NLRB and Starbucks Workers United.
Organizers and supporters have denounced the company for its “union busting” tactics, including firing, disciplining or changing the schedules of workers who seek to unionize. Earlier this month, the NLRB filed a lawsuit against Starbucks for retaliating against two pro-union employees in the Phoenix area.
Efforts to organize Starbucks workers have won support from local politicians. Earlier Monday U.S. Representative Sean CastenD-Downers Grove and U.S. Representative Jesús “Chuy” Garcia expressed his support via Twitter. The Chicago City Council last week passed A resolution urging the coffee giant to bargain fairly with workers.
“We are listening and learning from these store partners as we always do across the country,” a Starbucks spokesperson told WTTW News last week. “From the beginning, we have been clear in our belief that we are better together as partners with no union between us, and that belief has not changed.”
The first Chicago-area sites to organize were pushed back by the company.
The La Grange location and the first three Chicago locations, which all filed in January, are still in an NLRB hearing process triggered by a company challenge to their organizing efforts. But the Cary and Peoria cafes, which filed in February, already have a union election set without a company challenge and are expected to vote by mail in April.
Contact Nick Blumberg: [email protected] | (773) 509-5434 | @ndblumberg