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Striking Starbucks workers close down three Ann Arbor locations

Striking workers outside of the Starbucks location on Jackson & Zeeb Rd. in Ann Arbor.
Bennett Proegler
Striking workers outside of the Starbucks location on Jackson & Zeeb Rd. in Ann Arbor.

Unionized workers are closing down three Ann Arbor Starbucks locations today as part of a work stoppage by more than a hundred stores nationwide.

The unionized workers at Starbucks locations at Jackson and Zeeb, Main and Liberty. and Glencoe Crossing in Ann Arbor say they will be out protesting all day today (see press release below).

They are joining what’s being called a “Red Cup Rebellion” because it was scheduled for Red Cup Day at Starbucks, a day the company brings in big profits offering reusable holiday cups.

Local Starbucks union organizer Bennett Proegler says the goal is to bring attention to management in hopes the company will bargain in good faith.

“And we’ve all had the same experience where the lawyers come in, and they sit down at the bargaining table for 30 seconds or a minute, and they stand up to consult each other, and they won’t come back for the remainder of the bargaining session.”

Proegler says the unionized workers are asking for better compensation, better safety, and better benefits.

WEMU has reached out to Starbucks management for comment.

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Cathy Shafran was WEMU's afternoon news anchor and local host during WEMU's broadcast of NPR's All Things Considered.
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