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Oxford Starbucks staff try to justify...

Oxford Starbucks staff try to justify union push with claims of racism, transphobia from customers and management

By: Frank Corder - March 8, 2022

Starbucks Workers United is an effort that is a part of Workers United, a labor union that describes itself as “built upon a foundation of social justice.”

The staff of a Starbucks in Oxford, Mississippi is claiming that due to them having to “endure homophobia, racism, and transphobia on a near daily basis” from customers and management, and not having support from the company, they should be allowed to unionize.

The workers also claim to be overworked and understaffed with inconsistent management and suffering through “ordeal after ordeal” since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

Nine workers are listed as signing onto the letter to Starbucks President and CEO Kevin Johnson.

Starbucks Workers United is an effort that is a part of Workers United, a labor union that describes itself as “built upon a foundation of social justice.” They are an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) with the purpose of advancing labor laws in America.

The SEIU has an initiative aimed at taking on Starbucks following the termination of employees at a Memphis, Tennessee location where the staff attempted to unionize. According to SEIU, on February 8th, almost the entire union organizing committee that formed at the Memphis Starbucks / Poplar & Highland store was fired “with flimsy excuses – a clear attack on their right to form a union.”

SEIU is calling for Starbucks to reinstate those Memphis workers and “stop union-busting,” adding that “Starbucks workers nationwide are joining the #UnionsForAll movement.”

Starbucks has opposed unionization at its stores nationwide, which has led to social media campaigns targeting the company as a political statement.

When a New York employee was recently fired, allegedly for attempting to unionize his location, he posted a photo of himself with Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D) on a GoFundMe campaign that has raised over $3,000 with the statement that reads, “If Starbucks workers had a union, workers would have the right to end ‘at will’ employment and to prevent the company from firing workers with no due process or contractual protections.”

He says the GoFundMe is for rent, food and monthly bills, claiming that his firing came after he “dealt with Starbucks’ extreme anti-union tactics on a daily basis for months.” He noted that he was “one of the only queer & POC partners at Sheridan & Bailey” cafe in Buffalo.

Mississippi is a right-to-work state frequently depicted as backwards and racist by liberal media in the state and nationally, making it ripe for social justice, far-left activists to attempt to make hay with such causes, particularly in a college town.

However, most folks in this neck of the woods do not take kindly to being labeled unfairly or used as pawns to advance the progressive narrative.

It is not a stretch of the imagination that a Starbucks location in Mississippi could go belly up from of a dwindling customer base as a result of such antics, putting those same employees out of work and leaving the community with a vacant building.

About the Author(s)
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Frank Corder

Frank Corder is a native of Pascagoula. For nearly two decades, he has reported and offered analysis on government, public policy, business and matters of faith. Frank’s interviews, articles, and columns have been shared throughout Mississippi as well as in national publications such as the Daily Caller. He is a frequent guest on radio and television, providing insight and commentary on the inner workings of the Magnolia State. Frank has served his community in both elected and appointed public office, hosted his own local radio and television programs, and managed private businesses all while being an engaged husband and father. Email Frank: