Mar 24, 2023 | News Story

Starbucks Workers Hold One Day Walkout

Workers at more than 115 Starbucks locations across the country including two in Astoria and one in Williamsburg walked off the job Wednesday to pressure the company to negotiate contracts with the unionized stores. They also called for a halt to the coffee retailer’s anti-union tactics, which have brought censure from both federal judges and the National Labor Relations Board.

Workers held their walkout on what they call “Founder's Day,” in mock celebration of the company’s recently departed interim CEO Howard Schultz, who assumed an aggressive anti-union posture during three stints at the company, the most recent concluding just days from when he is scheduled to testify before a Senate committee. Baristas at the 115 stores, all of which have unionized since December 2021, are members of the Starbucks Workers United collective. Nearly 300 stores nationwide have unionized.

Maria Flores, who has worked at a Starbucks branch in Astoria for three years, told The Chief that she chose to walk out because Starbucks continues to not provide her and her colleagues with consistent schedules, a potential violation of city law. Flores, who voted along with 10 other employees to unionize her store last summer, also called on Starbucks to begin negotiating a contract in earnest. “It’s been a year and we as a region and as a nation have called on Starbucks to meet with us and bargain and they’ve refused to do that,” she said. Read more in The Chief!