Sunday, August 06, 2006

STARBUCKS INFAMY: IWW Organizer Daniel Gross

August 5, 2006

The Starbucks "investigation" of IWW member Daniel
Gross concluded today with his termination after more
than three years of organizing at the company.
Daniel's expression of solidarity at a union picket
line with co-worker and fellow union member, Evan
Winterscheidt, was deemed threatening by Starbucks
despite multiple eyewitnesses who confirm that Daniel
merely asserted to District Manager Allison Marx that
Evan should not be fired. With the termination of IWW
members Daniel Gross, Evan Winterscheidt, Joe Agins
Jr., and Charles Fostrom in less than a year,
Starbucks has demonstrated conclusively its intense
hostility to the right of workers to join a union.

To provide additional cover for the unlawful
termination, Starbucks issued Daniel a blatantly
discriminatory performance review today with negative
ratings for things like, "not communicating partner
morale issues to the Store Manager." The manager
confirmed that morale issues included complaints about
wages and working conditions. Last we checked, an
employer may not mandate an employee to engage in
surveillance of co-worker's protected activities.

Far from breaking our campaign, Starbucks has done the
opposite. The current and former Starbucks workers who
proudly carry the red Industrial Workers of the World
membership card vow to redouble our efforts to achieve
an independent voice on the job. The right to free
association at work is fundamental and not subject to
compromise. But to vindicate our right to union
membership, we need support from you, the working
class; the class that built this society with our
sweat and indeed with our blood.

The multinational retailers like Wal-Mart, Starbucks,
and Borders seek totalitarian control of the
workplace. The way forward to reign in these massive
corporations is a social movement of workers and
community members. The Wobblies at Starbucks have
proven that by taking direct action against the
company over issues of concern to workers and by
avoiding the skewed certification process of NLRB
elections, baristas can improve their lives on and off
the job. This strategy only works however, if the
company incurs significant economic, political, and
social costs when it violates the right to organize by
terminating workers for union activity.

Take action with us sisters and brothers. Together we
will win:

1) Do not spend your hard earned money at Starbucks
until the company respects the right of workers to
organize and reinstates Daniel Gross and the rest of
the IWW baristas. Let the company know you are taking
a stand by participating in the email action:

2) Obtain a resolution or pledge from your community
group, labor union, or house of worship agreeing to
stay way from Starbucks products until justice is
done. Please send copies to

3) Hold a rally or leafleting action at Starbucks in
support of the right to organize and in defense of the
fired union baristas if you feel that's appropriate in
your local community. Please check in with the
baristas at the store before hand to involve them in
the action.

4) If you are a student, join the Justice from Bean to
Cup! campaign launching this Fall to ensure Starbucks
doesn't operate on campuses without reinstating the
IWW baristas, respecting the right to organize, and
making a meaningful commitment to Fair Trade. Get
involved by e-mailing

5) Make a financial contribution to the IWW Starbucks
Workers Union to ensure a continued independent voice
for employees at the world's largest coffee chain.
Send checks made out to "IWW Starbucks Workers Union"
or well-concealed cash to:

IWW Starbucks Workers Union
347 Maujer St. Apt. #C
Brooklyn, NY 11206

"the work of the theater is the liberation of dreams, the
transformation of ideas into working acts" Julian Beck

No comments: