After the union claimed that Starbucks did not allow dozens of stores to decorate for Pride month, more than 3,000 employees at more than 150 locations throughout the country planned to go on strike over the next week.
Starbucks has denied the claims and stated that their policy on Pride Month decorations has not changed.
On Friday, employees at the company’s Seattle roasting headquarters will begin a strike. They plan to picket outside the café to stop deliveries as well.
About 8,000 Starbucks employees are represented by Starbucks Workers United, and the union has announced that more outlets in major cities like Chicago, Philadelphia, and San Antonio will join the strike over the following few days.
As a result of the planned walkouts, several businesses may be compelled to temporarily close their doors. But Starbucks said it will allow workers who aren’t on strike to sign up for extra shifts to keep things running normally.
Workers and Starbucks management have been at an impasse for over a year over the first collective bargaining contracts for outlets where unionization was approved by a majority of employees.
Union says a worker was informed that there was insufficient time to decorate.
Starbucks Workers United said that staff in 21 states were not allowed to exhibit Pride month decorations like the rainbow flag.
The union said that the justifications opposing the decorations had been inconsistent.
In Massachusetts, one worker was told there wasn’t enough time to decorate the store. In Oklahoma, a management raised safety concerns due to recent Target Pride shop incidents. In Georgia, some staff were informed it was hazardous to decorate on ladders.
It’s not just Starbucks that has been accused of abandoning LGBTQ customers. In the face of conservative reaction, businesses like Bud Light and Target have looked to scale back their participation in Pride events.
Starbucks denies local management choices.
Starbucks has refuted charges by the union that it has ever directed locations to restrict or prohibit Pride-related décor, and the firm continues to sell Pride products.
According to Starbucks, the chain has looked into claims that certain stores have refused to allow Pride decorations and has found no indication of bias.
The Starbucks union says more than 150 outlets will strike over the company’s Pride decorations