Starbucks Inspired More Organizing “Firsts” At Apple, Trader Joe’s, And More

by | Jun 23, 2022 | AFL-CIO, CWA, Retail, SEIU, UFCW, Union Organizing

A no-brainer: the leak of union-activity inside of Starbucks led other coffee house workers to pursue the same. Colectivo followed suit, and now, Intelligentsia Coffee Workers (in Chicago) filed for a union election under the IBEW. This news feels all-too familiar by now, but Starbucks inspired workers for other corporate giants:

  • Apple workers in Towson, Maryland voted for their first unionized U.S. retail store in the U.S. This low-volume store could be a stepping stone for multiple unions to gain a foothold elsewhere. On that note, both Workers United and the CWA announced their coordinated effort to topple more Apple locations in the U.S.
  • Trader Joe’s workers filed (another company first) to vote in a union election. They’re seeking increased salaries in accordance with inflation.
  • Show business could also prove to be lucrative for dues-craving unions, which claimed another “first”, this time among NYC post-production coordinators from eight studios (including Apple Studios, Netflix, HBO, and Disney Pictures, who voted to unionize under the CWA). Subsequently, a separate crop of coordinators (including those who work in live theater) voted for UAW representation.
  • The Southern Workers Opportunity Fund announced $14 million in funding (coming from the AFL-CIO, the SEIU, and more usual suspects) for organized labor with an eye on putting more organizing drives into motion, including at Amazon warehouses.
  • Although union victories make flashier headlines, losses quietly accumulate as well. At Bodo’s Bagels in Charlottesville, VA, a majority of workers voted against representation by the United Food and Commercial Workers union. And the NLRB ruled that workers at a Hampton Inn in Long Island, NY wished to give their union the boot.


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