Starbucks union says Pride weekend strikes closed 21 US stores

Jun 26, 2023, 9:09 AM

The union organizing Starbucks workers said Monday that a strike timed to Pride month closed 21 stores over the weekend, including the company’s flagship Reserve Roastery in Seattle.

The strike will continue through this week and is expected to close or disrupt operations at more than 150 stores, Starbucks Workers United said. The Seattle Roastery was closed all day Friday and was open for just five hours on Sunday instead of its usual 15, the union said.

Workers are protesting reports that some Starbucks stores Target, where angry customers tipped over Pride displays and confronted workers. The union also says Starbucks officials have warned workers that unionizing could threaten their health benefits, including gender affirming care for transgender workers.

But Starbucks insists there has been no change of corporate policy around Pride displays or employee benefits. Starbucks extended full health care to same-sex partners in 1988 and added coverage for gender reassignment surgery in 2013.

In a letter to employees posted Friday on Starbucks’ website, CEO Laxman Narasimhan noted that a Pride flag is currently flying over the company’s Seattle headquarters, just as it has in past years.

“We want to be crystal clear: Starbucks has been and will continue to be at the forefront of supporting the LGBTQIA2+ community, and we will not waver in that commitment,” Narasimhan said. “As such, we strongly disapprove of any person or group, seeking to use our partners’ cultural and heritage celebrations to create harm or flagrantly advance misinformation for self-interested goals.”

At least 319 of Starbucks’ 9,265 company-operated U.S. stores have voted to unionize since late 2021, while 76 stores have voted against unionizing, according to the National Labor Relations Board. Workers are seeking guaranteed minimum hours, gender-neutral store bathrooms and safety improvements, among other things.

But Starbucks doesn’t support unionization, and the effort has been contentious. Earlier this month, the company agreed to settle an NLRB complaint that it improperly blocked unionized employees from working shifts at University of Washington football games. The company agreed to back pay for 10 workers and also said it would inform current employees in the Seattle area that it won’t interfere with their right to organize.

United States News

Associated Press

Pursuit of Milwaukee carjacking suspects ends with police shooting 2 teens in stolen vehicle

MILWAUKEE (AP) — A police pursuit of carjacking suspects in Milwaukee ended Thursday with police firing into the vehicle and injuring two teens, one of whom was pregnant and lost her baby, Milwaukee police said. Officers tried to stop the stolen vehicle just before 2:30 p.m. on Interstate 43 north of Milwaukee. The pursuit ended […]

39 minutes ago

Associated Press

2 crop dusting airplanes collided in southern Idaho, killing 1 pilot and severely injuring the other

ARCO, Idaho (AP) — Two crop dusting airplanes collided near an airport in southern Idaho on Thursday and crashed to the ground, killing one of the pilots and leaving the other with life-threatening injuries, officials said. The crash was reported at about 12:30 p.m. in an area covered by sage and grass near the airport […]

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Seattle police officer fired for off-duty racist comments

SEATTLE (AP) — A Seattle police officer was fired for calling his Chinese American neighbor racist and sexist slurs while off duty in 2022, according to a news report. Officer Burton Hill was fired in May, The Seattle Times reported. The termination stemmed from an altercation with his neighbor, Zhen Jin, over the disposal of […]

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Appeals court panel refuses to delay Trump ally Steve Bannon’s 4-month contempt prison sentence

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal appeals court panel on Thursday rejected longtime Donald Trump ally Steve Bannon’s bid to stay out of prison while he fights his conviction for defying a subpoena from the House committee that investigated the U.S. Capitol attack. Bannon is supposed to report to prison by July 1 to begin serving […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

2 killed in helicopter crash in Washington state, authorities say

BLUESTEM, Wash. (AP) — Two men died in a helicopter crash in eastern Washington state, authorities said. Lincoln County Fire District 6 Chief Brandon Larmer told KREM-TV that the helicopter had two people aboard when it crashed Wednesday afternoon. The men who died were identified Thursday as 68-year-old Ryan Sandvig, of Spokane, and 63-year-old Mark […]

6 hours ago

Associated Press

Gold bars and Sen. Bob Menendez’s curiosity about their price takes central role at bribery trial

NEW YORK (AP) — Prosecutors showed jurors at Sen. Bob Menendez ’s trial on Thursday multiple instances when he researched the value of gold as he tried to help a New Jersey businessman who authorities say bribed him with gold and cash. The evidence about the Democrat’s online searches was prominently displayed to a New […]

6 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Sanderson Ford

3 new rides for 3 new road trips in Arizona

It's time for the Sanderson Ford Memorial Day sale with the Mighty Fine 69 Anniversary, as Sanderson Ford turned 69 years old in May.


Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Beat the heat, ensure your AC unit is summer-ready

With temperatures starting to rise across the Valley, now is a great time to be sure your AC unit is ready to withstand the sweltering summer heat.


DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

Starbucks union says Pride weekend strikes closed 21 US stores