Starbucks workers at hundreds of US stores go on strike on Red Cup day

Economy  |
Editor : Kevser Erbay
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Starbucks workers, represented by the labor union Workers United, go on strike on super busy day for company, asking for better working conditions

Starbucks workers in the United States went on strike on a super busy day for the company called "Red Cup Day," which is a big deal for Starbucks because they hand out special holiday-themed cups. The workers, represented by the labor union Workers United, have been asking for better working conditions.

Even though Starbucks said most of its stores were open, some workers in dozens of stores went on strike. This happened on a day when Starbucks gives out free red holiday cups with coffee purchases, which usually brings in a lot of customers.

During the strike, about a dozen workers protested outside a Starbucks at New York University. They were chanting things like "no contract, no coffee." At the same time, the place was still crowded with students and staff ordering drinks.

Red Cup Day is usually crazy busy for Starbucks. Last year, their stores in the U.S. saw a huge increase in customers on the day.

The Workers United, representing over 9,000 Starbucks employees in about 360 U.S. stores, said that this event is one of the toughest days for workers. They face a lot of pressure due to the high number of orders and sometimes have to deal with angry customers because of long wait times.

Mary Boca, a 22-year-old barista at the Astor Place store in New York, emphasized she wants better pay and more co-workers because it gets really hectic there. She mentioned that they can't receive tips at their location, which means she's missing out on extra money.

Another worker, Edwin Palma Solis, who is 24 and works at the same store, thinks that not being able to receive tips might be keeping potential new hires away.

Starbucks has a lot of stores in the U.S., but only a very small percentage of them are part of a union. Last year, workers at more than 100 Starbucks stores in the U.S. went on strike on Red Cup Day.

Starbucks recently said they'd increase hourly pay for their U.S. retail workers by at least 3% from 2024. However, employees criticized this move, calling it insensitive, especially since Starbucks had seen a big increase in revenue and other workers had won wage increases.

Source: Reuters & News Agencies

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