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12/19/2014 | Restoring a Fair Workweek

Winning Equitable Schedules for Starbucks Workers

The Fair Workweek Initiative and Starbucks baristas are making significant progress in their three month campaign to push Starbucks into changing its scheduling policy and practice for 130,000 baristas.

In August Starbucks barista Jannette Navarro’s story about struggling to raise her son with an ever-changing part-time schedule made the front pages of the New York Times. The company responded swiftly to pledge reforms. But many baristas recognized immediately that the company didn’t go far enough to ensure that their 130,000 baristas have predictable, stable schedules with adequate hours.

In response, the Fair Workweek Initiative teamed up with a number of Starbucks baristas, including member leaders of the Starbucks Workers Union, to launch a Coworker.org petition which garnered over 7500 signatures. The escalating campaign drew coverage from a wide range of media outlets, including stories in PBS NewsHourNPRHuffington PostCBS NewsNY Post and a second New York Times story.

The company responded by reforming their official policy to now give 10 days’ notice of work schedules and workers from over 40 locations across the country have reported their managers are going further and giving them three weeks’ notice. Managers are being encouraged to create schedules that are more responsive to workers’ needs and are prohibited from scheduling workers with back to back opening and closing shifts known as “clo-pens.”