NEW ORLEANS (AP) – Employees at a New Orleans Starbucks store voted to form a union and become the first coffee giant in Louisiana to join.
On Friday and Saturday they voted in favor of joining the 11-1 Workers Union, which represents United Starbucks stores. Reported by WWNO-FM. According to the station, two ballots were contested.
Bartender Caitlin Pierce and others wanted to join the union because of regular shifts where they were overcrowded and understaffed, the station reported.
“I feel good,” Pierce said. “It’s something we’ve worked hard on and it’s wonderful to finally get here.”
Starbucks has struggled with union efforts, saying the U.S.-owned store with 9,000 companies performs best when Starbucks works directly with employees the company calls “partners.”
In a statement released Sunday, Starbucks said it was “listening and learning” and added, “We respect our partner’s right to organize.” The statement did not say whether the company would oppose the vote.
Billy Knicks, the union’s main campaign organizer, was fired in mid-May for early store closures without permission from top leadership. Nyx protested the eviction and said it was in response to the union’s defense.
Nyx said he will meet with his attorney and bring together those still working in the shop to implement specific requirements in contract negotiations.
To win the changes they’re looking for, such as better salaries and more reliable schedules, United Stores will still need to sit down at Starbucks and negotiate a deal. This is a process that takes many years.
I am David Wyatt, a professional writer and journalist for Buna Times. I specialize in the world section of news coverage, where I bring to light stories and issues that affect us globally. As a graduate of Journalism, I have always had the passion to spread knowledge through writing.