Starbucks promises ‘clearer’ guidelines after Pride Month decor clash with union

Starbucks addresses Pride decorations & store strikes. CEO announces guidelines for inclusive displays. Union strikes continue. LGBTQIA+ treatment in focus.

Starbucks addresses Pride decorations & store strikes. CEO announces guidelines for inclusive displays. Union strikes continue. LGBTQIA+ treatment in focus.

Starbucks addresses Pride decorations & store strikes. CEO announces guidelines for inclusive displays. Union strikes continue. LGBTQIA+ treatment in focus.

Starbucks will address Pride decorations after customer feedback and unionized store strikes.

On Monday, Starbucks North America CEO Sara Trilling addressed an open letter to staff announcing “clearer centralized guidelines” for shop visual displays and decorations to “continue to represent inclusivity and our brand.” Our retail locations will also have the autonomy they need to represent their communities.

The Siren’s Eye program and Period Planning Kit will direct the company’s seasonal signs and displays.

Starbucks Workers United, the union that represents Starbucks’ organized shops, alleged earlier this month that the company had banned Pride Month decorations in some states. Starbucks adamantly denies this.

Trilling wrote to colleagues on Monday that “inclusive store environments,” “company culture,” and “benefits we offer our partners” will remain. Starbucks’ medical insurance covers transgender employees since 2013.

Starbucks workers began a multi-day “unfair labor practice strike” on Friday to protest the company’s “union-busting campaign” and LGBTQIA+ treatment. Organizers prioritize gender-neutral facilities and standardized hours.

As of Monday, over 60 Starbucks shops in 17 states were on strike. Over 150 shops are expected to strike by Sunday night.

Starbucks (SBUX) filed grievances with the NLRB in response to the union’s assertions. Over a year and a half, the corporation has fought the union.

According to the reports “the union and its agents have engaged in a smear campaign that includes deliberate misrepresentations to Starbucks partners,” with the union “making deliberate misrepresentations that include maliciously and recklessly false statements about Starbucks longstanding support of Pride Month and decorations in its stores.”

Starbucks released a statement noting that store managers can decorate for Pride and other cultural months.

“We unwaveringly support the LGBTQIA2+ community,” a spokesman said. “We’re deeply concerned by false information that is being spread.” “Own responses have not been consistent” compared to business records and shop managers’ testimonies, the union said.

Union reacts

“While attacking the union that represents its own workers, Starbucks has now changed its policies in response to worker actions,” Workers United for Starbucks said in a Tuesday statement. The union is confident of acquittal.

“while we are glad Starbucks is finally reconsidering its position on pride decorations, Starbucks continues to ignore that they are legally required to bargain with union workers,” the union added. “If Starbucks truly wants to be an ally to the LGBTQIA+ community, they will actually listen to their queer workers by coming to the bargaining table to negotiate in good faith.”

From late 2021 to mid-June, almost 300 Starbucks locations have voted to unionize, with the NLRB certifying all but 65. The lack of contract advancement is due to both sides.

Only a small percentage of Starbucks’ 9,300 US locations are unionized. Their victories were hard-won.

In a March judgement by NLRB administrative law judge Michael Rosas, Starbucks engaged in “egregious and widespread misconduct” in its interactions with Buffalo, New York, workers trying to unionize the first of its shops. According to the judge, Starbucks’ “relentless” campaign to persuade Buffalo residents to vote against representation “likely left a lasting impact as to the importance of voting against representation.”

Starbucks stated after Rosas’ order that the judgment and remedies were erroneous. “We’re exploring legal review options.”

Starbucks has received hundreds of NLRB complaints concerning employee treatment. Stockholders want answers.

At the annual shareholder meeting in March, shareholders voted to have the board of directors “commission and oversee an independent, third-party assessment of Starbucks’ adherence to its stated commitment to workers’ freedom of association and collective bargaining rights.”

The proposal alleges that the corporation intimidated and retaliated against workers in its union dispute, putting its reputation and legal standing at risk.

The company has initiated a human rights inquiry and has been acting legally, suggesting shareholders vote against the idea.

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