Facebook Instagram Twitter YouTube

Over 150 People at a Rally to Demand Starbucks on Reinstate Austin

On Friday, July 22, a rally was organized against Starbucks union busting in front of the Starbucks at Ditmars Blvd and 31st Street in the Astoria neighborhood of Queens. People rallied to reinstate Austin, who was unjustly fired and against all firings of unionizing workers.

Luigi Morris

July 26, 2022
Facebook Twitter Share
Photo by Luigi Morris

Over 150 people joined a rally in solidarity with Austin, a Starbucks worker who was illegally fired five days after his Starbucks store in Astoria, Queens won its union election. Austin Locke worked at Starbucks for 6 years prior to his firing on July 5. He was publicly active in helping to unionize his store with Starbucks Workers United (SWU) and is also a member of Restaurant Workers Union (RWU). In retaliation against his organizing efforts, Austin was targeted by Starbucks management and was fired. 

Starbucks workers who spoke at the rally shared that Austin’s experience is a reality for unionizing Starbucks workers across the country. Howard Schultz, the CEO of Starbucks, has been ramping up union busting, including harassing pro-union workers, firing worker-organizers, proposing new benefits for non-union stores, and even closing unionized stores. Starbucks workers have been responding to these attacks with strikes, protests, and walkouts.

These ongoing union-busting tactics and attacks are also a reality across many corporations in New York City like Amazon, Chipotle, HarperCollins, Apple, the Guttmacher Institute, and others. To reflect this situation, Friday’s rally was open to other sectors that are in struggle, such as Amazon, UPS, and the Guttmacher Institute, and also to leftist organizations who were part of the call for this rally like Restaurant Workers Union, Left Voice, Socialist Alternative and DSA. The rally was attended by community members, other unions and their members, and leftist organizations, all in solidarity with Austin.

Friday showed the need and the potential of a united struggle against union busting in NYC. Workers are stepping up for their rights but the attacks from the bosses are serious. We need to coordinate our fights to show that in NYC, we won’t let these attacks happen without a fight.

As Austin said during his speech, “the reality of the situation is that an injury to one of us is an injury to all. They came for me and they can come for you next, but not when we are unified and fight back. I’m not the first, I’m probably not the last, but let’s make NYC an example for Starbucks, for the capitalist class everywhere: you come for one worker, you come for us all.”

Facebook Twitter Share

Luigi Morris

Luigi is a freelance photographer, socialist journalist and videographer. He is an activist for immigrants' rights.

Twitter Instagram

Labor Movement

As Grade Deadlines Approach, Academic Workers Must Hold the Line and Expand Strikes

The end of the semester is a critical time for academic workers on strike. Part time faculty at The New School and student workers and postdocs at the University of California are fighting hard to hold the line against increasing attacks from their employers. At The New School, the rumor is they might be close to winning.

Olivia Wood

December 8, 2022

The First Overdose Prevention Centers in US History Vote to Unionize

Workers at the nation’s first overdose prevention centers submitted their demand for voluntary union recognition. The workers are demanding better benefits and healthcare, along with greater control over workplace decisions. The harm reduction sector is joining the labor movement.

Left Voice

December 8, 2022

“Grueling Working Conditions and Low Wages”: A Testimonial from a UPS Warehouse Worker

Workers in UPS warehouses are among the most precarious workers in the logistics industry. As the 2023 Teamsters contract negotiations approaches, a UPS warehouse worker speaks out about his working conditions and calls for unity in struggle among UPS drivers and warehouse workers.

Nehuen Latif

November 30, 2022
Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco. Logo on a grey building.

Workers Built Twitter — They Should Own It, Not Elon Musk

Corporations like Twitter cannot function without the workers who do the daily labor.

Kyle Thibodeau

November 27, 2022

MOST RECENT

The Roots of the Rebellion at Foxconn

Jenny Chan is a researcher and professor at the Polytechnic University of Hong Kong. She is co-author of the book Dying for an iPhone. She spoke with La Izquerda Diario about the causes of the rebellion by workers at the Foxconn plant in Zhengzhou, China.

Josefina L. Martínez

December 7, 2022
South African president Cyril Ramaphosa in a suit

“Farmgate” Threatens the Very Foundations of Capitalist Stability in South Africa

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa faces an impeachment vote Tuesday. More than a simple case of corruption, it’s a political crisis of the ruling party and of capitalist stability in the country.

Sam Carliner

December 5, 2022

Understanding the Carnage at Colorado Springs

The heinous violence displayed in Colorado Springs is a stark reminder of the menacing, lethal threat that today’s determined far right continues to pose to trans and queer people, and anyone living outside capitalism’s imposed sexual and gender boundaries.

Keegan O'Brien

December 4, 2022
Mapuche people standing with a flag

The Case of the Mapuche: What Can Trotsky Teach Us about the Fight against National Oppression?

Trotsky’s reflections on the social aspect of permanent revolution have deep implications for building working-class hegemony through solidarity with oppressed peoples.

Juan Valenzuela

December 4, 2022