Mall of America Starbucks Workers Join Push to Kick Out SBWU Union

On July 14, 2023,  Rebecca Person, a worker at the first floor Mall of America Starbucks location right outside of Minneapolis, Minnesota, recently submitted a petition to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Region 18 that aims to kick out Starbucks Workers’ United (SBWU) union officials from their workplace through a vote. 

The union decertification petition counts on  signatures from a majority of employees at the Mall of America Starbucks location. The majority support for kicking the union out of the workplace is far greater than the 30% requirement spelled out by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) needed to activate the NLRB to hold a decertification vote among the workers.

With the employees’ petition filed with the NLRB, the NLRB’s rules stipulate that a secret ballot election should be quickly schedule to figure out whether a majority of workers want to terminate union officials’ power to impose a contract, which includes compulsory dues, on the employees. Due to how Minnesota does not have Right to Work safeguards for its private sector employees, SBWU union bosses have the power to enter into an agreement with Starbucks that would mandate Person and her fellow employees to pay union dues or fees as a condition of keeping their employment. In the meantime, in states where Right to Work is on the books, union membership and financial support are largely voluntary.

“The deceptive tactics SBWU officials took in gaining control of multiple Starbucks locations are finally coming back to haunt them,” remarked National Right to Work Foundation President Mark Mix. “Starbucks partners nationwide are seeing how the union organizers, including those secretly paid by the union pretending to be genuine coworkers, manipulated them to do what is best for union bosses but not in the best interests of rank-and-file workers.”

“These Starbucks workers have joined others in taking the first step in exercising their rights to oust an unwanted union, and we call on SBWU union officials and the NLRB to respect the wishes of these workers who simply want a prompt decertification vote,” added Mix. “The right of workers to oust a union that lacks majority support should not be subjugated to the interests of incumbent union bosses seeking to retain power against the wishes of rank-and-file workers.”

Labor unions must be taught a lesson. Their coercion cannot be allowed to go on without impunity. Not only is this a total violation of the right to freedom of association, the further allowance of forced unionization gives the Left another vector for accumulating power at the productive workers’ expense. 

For that reason, the Right must encourage worker revolts against union-controlled workplaces in addition to the passage of laws that prohibit forced unionization.

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