The Significant Milestone Starbucks Union Efforts Just Reached

The Starbucks' employee unionizing effort just hit a significant milestone.

The union effort kicked off in January 2022, when workers at a Buffalo, New York store voted to unionize (via Associated Press). This kicked off a cascade of unionization efforts, store-by-store, with Truth Out reporting that by early April, 200 stores had filed to unionize. The website noted that the pace of filings doubled in just six short weeks, with filings hitting two stores per day at the time.

Starbucks' corporate office, of course, fired back, allegedly employing union busting tactics like intimidating and even terminating pro-union workers and threatening to freeze pay and benefits. Starbucks stores are also experiencing a wave of closures, which pro-union activists see as a direct and punitive response to their organizing efforts.

This has not stopped Starbuck's employees' march towards unionization. Nation's Restaurant News reports a Starbucks in Cleveland, Ohio hit a milestone when employees voted yes to the union on July 22, becoming the 200th Starbucks to do so.

Starbucks union effort surpasses milestone

The unionizers are not one to rest on their laurels. That milestone number was quickly overtaken on July 26, when a Farmingdale, Long Island store in New York voted yes to unionize, according to Nation's Restaurant News. 295 stores have cast yes votes for the union in just eight months. That means almost 80% of the stores that filed to unionize have voted yes.

Starbucks also hit another 200-number milestone, but this one was for complaints issued to the National Labor Relations Board during the month of June, with over 200 employee grievances logged (via Nation's Restaurant News). Complains to the NLRB include unlawful termination and disciplinary actions taken against pro-union employees, changing store hours that require employees to arrive at 4 a.m., bullying pro-union employees, as well as store closures.

Pro-union employees continue to push back, with workers forcing a busy Boston outpost to close when they went out on an indefinite strike.