Gen U: Generation Union (feat. Jaz Brisack & Casey Moore of Starbucks Workers United)
Episode 228: Rumble with Michael Moore
There's a new hit item on the menu at Starbucks stores across the country: a signed union card. The workers at multiple Buffalo, NY-area Starbucks stores formed Starbucks Workers United this August, in response to dangerous Covid working conditions, unequal pay, and inadequate benefits. In less than half a year, they've managed to already unionize two Buffalo-area stores, in Elmwood and in Genesee, at a company notoriously aggressive in their anti-union tactics.
This is huge, a game-changing pair of victories — even in a year full of strikes and Covid walkouts. To hear the story of how these incredible Starbucks Workers United organized this victory, and how you can organize your workplace, I talked with the Starbucks workers Jaz Brisack & Casey Moore — or, as the Orwellian Starbucks PR calls them, “partners” — two young women who helped lead the organizing effort and succeeded in slaying the giant.
During the interview, Casey and Jaz encouraged me to cold-call the CEO of Starbucks. And when I did, someone in Nicaragua picks up the phone. A true Rumble moment.
Help the workers of Starbucks get the fair pay, benefits, and protections they deserve: Contact Starbucks' Customer Support line and let them know that, as a customer, you demand that Starbucks stop trying to interfere in the Union organizing efforts.
Here's a handy script you can use when calling or emailing.
To CALL Starbucks Customer Support: 1-800-782-7282
To EMAIL : Use this form
If you want to learn how to unionize your workplace, reach out to Workers United, an affiliate of the SEIU.
And here’s where you can learn more about or contact Starbucks Workers United.
To read more about the efforts by Starbucks Workers United:
For a Newly Unionized Starbucks in Buffalo, the Future Looks Grand(e)
Starbucks Workers United Brings Union Campaign Home to Seattle
Be sure to read Michael's latest piece on his witnessing the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act in the House as an 11 year old.
Music in the episode:
Phil Ochs, "Links on the Chain"
Billy Brag, “There is Power in a Union”
A full transcript of this episode will be available here shortly:
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