Friday, March 10, 2006

Starbucks Settles Labor Complaint

Two articles in the Seattle Times on the recent IWW victory over Starbucks
in NYC.
more info can be found at


Starbucks Settles Labor Complaint
The Associated Press
Union vows to step up organizing efforts at Starbucks
Business & Technology: Thursday, March 09, 2006

The Associated Press

A union that sought to represent Starbucks Corp. baristas at three Manhattan
coffeehouses says it will ramp up its organizing efforts now that the
company has settled an unfair labor practice complaint.

A branch of the Industrial Workers of the World that calls itself IWW
Starbucks Workers Union characterized Tuesday's settlement as a victory for
union organizing. Among other things, it requires Starbucks to post notices
at the three stores named in the complaint stating that employees have the
right to join a union.

"This settlement creates the organizing space we need to continue the
already positive membership growth we have in the Starbucks union," Daniel
Gross, a Starbucks barista and IWW organizer, said Wednesday in a phone
interview from New York City.

Starbucks admitted no wrongdoing in its settlement with the National Labor
Relations Board, but agreed to offer two workers their jobs back and to give
three employees back pay totaling less than $2,000.

The union argued that Starbucks violated federal law by creating a national
policy prohibiting workers from sharing written union information or wearing
union buttons.

In a company statement e-mailed Wednesday by spokesman Alan Hilowitz,
Starbucks said: "While Starbucks respects the free choice of our partners
and remains committed to complying fully with all laws governing the right
to organize collectively, we also believe firmly that our progressive,
positive work environment, coupled with our outstanding compensation and
benefits, make unions unnecessary at Starbucks."

The company contends there are no unionized Starbucks stores in the United
States, but Gross says the IWW represents "a modest-sized group" of
dues-paying members who have collectively bargained for certain job
improvements, including pay raises.

Gross refused to say precisely how many Starbucks employees belong to the
union, but said it is making progress toward organizing more workers in New
York City and beyond.

March 8, 2006 2:56 AM (1 days ago)

SEATTLE - Starbucks Corp. said Tuesday it has settled an unfair labor
practice complaint brought by the Industrial Workers of the World, alleging
anti-union tactics at three stores in New York.

The IWW filed the complaint with the National Labor Relations Board over its
efforts at unionizing baristas at three Starbucks stores in Manhattan.

Starbucks admitted no wrongdoing, but agreed to offer two workers their jobs
back and to pay nearly $2,000 to several employees.

"Today's informal settlement resolves all of the IWW's charges without the
need for a long and expensive hearing," company spokeswoman Audrey Lincoff

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