In December 2021, a group of workers at a Starbucks location in Buffalo, New York, kicked off a unionization wave at the country’s biggest coffee chain that is now sweeping the country. Organizing as Starbucks Workers United, a union affiliated with the Service Employees International Union, workers are currently waging one of the most compelling battles in the American labor movement as they seek higher wages, improved health insurance, and better working conditions.
Eater has been keeping tabs on unionization efforts at Starbucks, which has resulted in a multiple nationwide strikes across the chain, including on the company’s most profitable day: Red Cup Day. SBWU’s second Red Cup Rebellion is taking place November 16, and this year colleges and universities are joining the action; Cornell University recently decided it would end its contract with Starbucks, while students at Georgetown, UCLA, Boston University, University of Washington, and other schools have asked their colleges to divest from the company.
Despite the company’s anti-union stance, over 360 stores have voted to unionize since 2021. Stay tuned here for all of our coverage of the Starbucks union sweep.