Starbucks workers at around 100 stores have begun a national three-day walk out, the union campaign’s largest action yet.

by Jeff Schuhrke, In These Times

In the latest escalation of their growing union drive, Starbucks workers across the country are staging a three-day strike beginning today — making it the longest nationally coordinated job action in the company’s history. Over 1,000 union baristas at around 100 stores are expected to participate in the work stoppage.

Starbucks Workers United (SBWU), which has won union elections at around 270 locations covering approximately 7,000 baristas since December 2021, is demanding the coffee giant begin negotiating a first contract rather than continue its relentless union-busting campaign. The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has cited the company with over 900 alleged violations of federal labor law since the union drive began.

Activists march at the Starbucks Worker Solidarity Rally in support of unionization for baristas and other retail workers.

The main reason why we’re taking this action is because of unfair labor practices the company is engaging in that the NLRB is investigating,” said Collin Pollitt, a union barista and SBWU organizer in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. ​The most recent are the denial of credit card tipping to union stores, hours cuts and the closing of union stores.”

SBWU previously organized a one-day national strike on November 17 called the ​Red Cup Rebellion,” timed to coincide with the coffee giant’s lucrative Red Cup Day annual promotion. But since then, the union says Starbucks has continued to attack the organizing effort, including by closing the first store to unionize in Seattle.

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