Starbucks workers at the Montclair-Church Street location became the fourth store in New Jersey to unionize.
Workers United will represent the workers after a unanimous vote, according to an Aug. 11 announcement by New Jersey State AFL-CIO.
“We are incredibly proud to continue our support of Starbucks workers in this historic, worker-led campaign. Their strength, strategy and solidarity serve as an inspiration to us all. As the drive to unionize more Starbucks locations moves on, we look forward to more successful elections,” an AFL-CIO email said.
“Unions help level the playing field between employees and employers. Starbucks workers nationally want more say in their wages, hours, and working conditions. Instead of treating them with respect, the company under CEO Howard Schultz has engaged in a union-busting campaign and retaliation against workers,” the email said. “Starbucks has been conducting captive audience meetings, spreading anti-union lies and propaganda, and cutting hours to deprive employees of healthcare benefits. Despite Starbucks union-busting, the workers at the Montclair-Church Street location and nationally have continued to file for and win union elections.”
The Montclair-Church Street unionization follows that of the Hamilton, Hopewell and Summit locations.
Nationally, over 260 Starbucks locations have filed paperwork with the National Labor Relations Board to begin the union election process since August 2021. More than 140 Starbucks locations have voted for unionization throughout the country.
Starbucks is making national headlines for its alleged union busting tactics, including firing union leaders. NPR reported in May that interim CEO Howard Schultz announced new benefits, including expanded training, improved sick leave and credit card tipping for almost half a million employees nationwide, but not at stores that are unionizing.
“We do not have the same freedom to make these improvements at locations that have a union or where union organizing is underway,” Schultz said on a conference call with shareholders on Tuesday.
Starbucks did not return a request for comment by press time.