Starbucks workers going on 3-day strike — Will NJ be affected?
If it's a Peppermint Mocha or Iced Sugar Cookie Almondmilk from Starbucks you crave you should be good to go this weekend in New Jersey despite a three-day strike by 1,000 of the company's baristas that started Friday.
The union said more the baristas would walk off the job for three days as part of the Double Down Strike. The name comes from what the union accuses the company of doing by closing the first Seattle store to unionize.
“Starbucks sent a clear message when they closed the Broadway and Denny store,” Michelle Eisen, a barista from the Elmwood location in Seattle who was recently named one of Bloomberg’s 50 most influential people of the year. “They’re doubling down on their union-busting, so we’re doubling down, too. We’re demanding fair staffing, an end to store closures, and that Starbucks bargain with us in good faith.”
The Starbucks Workers United map of participating locations does not show any New Jersey locations. However, workers at the Church Street location in Montclair were walking in the rain Friday morning. Niah Baker said Starbucks has been closing down stores that unionize.
"We're coming together in solidarity to show that we're not going to accept that," Baker told New Jersey 101.5. He is one the union leaders in his store. After the Red Cup Rebellion strike a month ago Baker said many of his co-workers understand why they have to take a stand.
"They're ready to join the other Starbucks across the nation and try to speak up," Baker said.
What can customers do to show support?
Baker said customers can show support for the strike by not buying gift cards. He said the company was not reporting to its board the money earned on unspent gift cards.
"We're asking people not to buy the gift cards to show you're not going to make money off of nothing. We're working hard and you're still getting paid this money and we're not seeing it," Baker said.
It's the second job action by Starbucks workers in the past month. Workers protested outside stores on Nov. 17, including Hopewell, Montclair and Summit in the Red Cup Rebellion, the day the company's special holiday cup was available.
Hopewell was the first New Jersey location to unionize. Stores in Hamilton (Mercer) and Summit are also unionized. Baker did not know if other stores were considering unionization.
Starbucks' corporate office on Friday morning did not respond to New Jersey 101.5's request for more information.