There’s a historic labor movement taking place in the United State right now. In one the most recent displays, Hollywood actors have joined writers in going on strike to receive fair payment for residuals from streaming services, and 340,000 UPS workers are on the cusp of doing the same as contract negotiations have reached a standstill.
At the forefront of this movement has been Starbucks Workers United, the force behind the union efforts at Starbucks-owned locations across the nation. Over the course of the past few years, they have successfully unionized over 300 locations, representing over 8,000 workers. And the latest location to file for a union vote is the Chicago roastery. If successful, every North American Starbucks roastery will now have union representation.
The filing was announced via the Starbucks Workers United Twitter account on July 14th. More than just being the final North American roasting location to collectively bargain, the successful unionizing of the Chicago location would be significant for the SWU, as it is the largest Starbucks in the world, employing over 200 workers at that location alone. It is, in a lot of ways, the jewel in the Starbucks crown. “The Davos of the demitasse,” as we referred to it on our visit back when it opened in 2019, the Chicago roastery is 35,000 square feet of coffee shop, spread out over five stories. It is not just the largest Starbucks in the world, but the largest coffee shop, period.
Per the Chicago Sun-Times, the National Labor Relations Board could schedule a vote by the roastery workers as soon as the next few weeks. There are currently 15 unionized Starbucks locations in Chicago and four more that ultimately voted against it.
This story is developing…