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STARBUCKS INFAMY: IWW Organizer Daniel Gross Terminated for Union Activity!

by intexile@iww.org Sunday, Aug. 06, 2006 at 8:33 PM
intexile@iww.org

TAKE ACTION NOW! The Starbucks "investigation" of IWW member Daniel Gross concluded today with his termination after more than three years of organizing at the company.

TAKE ACTION NOW!

The Starbucks "investigation" of IWW member Daniel Gross concluded today with his termination after more than three years of organizing at the company. Daniel's expression of solidarity at a union picket line with co-worker and fellow union member, Evan Winterscheidt, was deemed threatening by Starbucks despite multiple eyewitnesses who confirm that Daniel merely asserted to District Manager Allison Marx that Evan should not be fired. With the termination of IWW members Daniel Gross, Evan Winterscheidt, Joe Agins Jr., and Charles Fostrom in less than a year, Starbucks has demonstrated conclusively its intense hostility to the right of workers to join a union.

To provide additional cover for the unlawful termination, Starbucks issued Daniel a blatantly discriminatory performance review today with negative ratings for things like, "not communicating partner morale issues to the Store Manager." The manager confirmed that morale issues included complaints about wages and working conditions. Last we checked, an employer may not mandate an employee to engage in surveillance of co-worker's protected activities.

Far from breaking our campaign, Starbucks has done the opposite. The current and former Starbucks workers who proudly carry the red Industrial Workers of the World membership card vow to redouble our efforts to achieve an independent voice on the job. The right to free association at work is fundamental and not subject to compromise. But to vindicate our right to union membership, we need support from you, the working class; the class that built this society with our sweat and indeed with our blood.

The multinational retailers like Wal-Mart, Starbucks, and Borders seek totalitarian control of the workplace. The way forward to reign in these massive corporations is a social movement of workers and community members. The Wobblies at Starbucks have proven that by taking direct action against the company over issues of concern to workers and by avoiding the skewed certification process of NLRB elections, baristas can improve their lives on and off the job. This strategy only works however, if the company incurs significant economic, political, and social costs when it violates the right to organize by terminating workers for union activity.

Take action with us sisters and brothers. Together we will win:

1) Do not spend your hard earned money at Starbucks until the company respects the right of workers to organize and reinstates Daniel Gross and the rest of the IWW baristas. Let the company know you are taking a stand by participating in the email action: http://starbucksunion.org/node/1015

2) Obtain a resolution or pledge from your community group, labor union, or house of worship agreeing to stay way from Starbucks products until justice is done. Please send copies to starbucksunion@yahoo.com.

3) Hold a rally or leafleting action at Starbucks in support of the right to organize and in defense of the fired union baristas if you feel that's appropriate in your local community. Please check in with the baristas at the store before hand to involve them in the action.

4) If you are a student, join the Justice from Bean to Cup! campaign launching this Fall to ensure Starbucks doesn't operate on campuses without reinstating the IWW baristas, respecting the right to organize, and making a meaningful commitment to Fair Trade. Get involved by e-mailing starbucksunion@yahoo.com.

5) Make a financial contribution to the IWW Starbucks Workers Union to ensure a continued independent voice for employees at the world's largest coffee chain. Send checks made out to "IWW Starbucks Workers Union" or well-concealed cash to:

IWW Starbucks Workers Union
347 Maujer St. Apt. #C
Brooklyn, NY 11206

For more information, visit www.starbucksunion.org

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