Starbucks workers in St. Paul, Minneapolis, St. Anthony join nationwide picket
Workers at a handful of Twin Cities area Starbucks locations joined in on a strike Wednesday, saying they are participating in a national day of action.
Employees at stores located on St. Paul’s Snelling Avenue, Silver Lake Road in St. Anthony and Cedar Avenue in Minneapolis are all picketing from 7-11 a.m. A rally will also be held from 12-1 p.m. at the Cedar Avenue store.
According to Starbucks Workers United, workers are demanding better working conditions, livable wages, consistent scheduling, safe and respectful workplaces as well as the right to freely organize a union without fear and intimidation.
Starbucks says the company respects the right of workers “to organize and engage in lawful union activities.” Additionally, the company says its average wage is $17.50 per hour and it offers a 100% tuition reimbursement for a four-year bachelor’s degree at Arizona State University through the company’s College Achievement Program, plus a 401(k) that matches up to the first 5% of eligible pay contributed by partners each pay period.
The union says dozens of complaints have been issued by regional offices of the National Labor Relations Board since December 2021, including that a former CEO threatened a worker who supported the organizing of unions.
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The company released the following statement Wednesday morning in response to the strike:
“Rather than publicizing rallies, we encourage Workers United to live up to their obligations by responding to our proposed sessions and meeting us in-person to move the good faith bargaining process forward.”Starbucks spokesperson
Shareholders are expected to vote Thursday during an annual meeting on an assessment of company labor practices. In addition, former CEO Howard Schultz is scheduled to testify later this month in front of the U.S. Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee as part of an examination of the company’s actions during the unionization campaign.
Laxman Narasimhan is the company’s current CEO and is expected to lead Thursday’s meeting.
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As previously reported by 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS, workers at the St. Paul and St. Anthony locations also joined a national three-day strike in December. Meanwhile, employees at the store located near Lake Nokomis were on strike last summer.
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