Union study finds Black Starbucks baristas in airports paid less than whites

Black baristas at airport Starbucks make a median wage of $11.15 an hour, $1.85 less than white baristas, according to a report released Tuesday by the hospitality workers’ union Unite Here.

The union examined 2019 employment data of more than 2,000 unionized workers — 85 percent of whom were people of color, and 35 percent Black women — at 142 stores operated by HMSHost in 27 airports around the country, including in Boston.

In March of 2018, Starbucks announced that it had reached 100 percent pay equity for men, women, and people of color doing similar jobs at its US stores. In May of that year, Starbucks closed more than 8,000 US stores for a day for racial bias training following an incident in which two Black men were arrested at a Starbucks in Philadelphia.

But according to Unite Here, the airport Starbucks remained open. Nearly a third of workers responding to a Unite Here survey said they had struggled to pay their rent in the past year.

In addition, LGBTQ workers reported being subjected to offensive comments, and one in four immigrants were told to stop speaking their preferred languages at work.

On Thursday, workers plan to leaflet 700 Starbucks stores in 40 cities, including 20 in the Boston area, to raise awareness of the report’s findings. Starbucks referred a request for comment to HMSHost, which could not be reached immediately.


Katie Johnston can be reached at katie.johnston@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @ktkjohnston.

Battery Wharf Hotel Workers Win Strike

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 22, 2019

Contact: Nicki Morris, 857-498-2495, nmorris@local26.org

Twitter: @unitehere26

Battery Wharf Hotel Workers Vote on Tentative Agreement to End Strike

After 79 days on strike, Battery Wharf Hotel workers win monumental agreement

What: Battery Wharf Hotel workers to vote on tentative agreement and discuss their 79 days on strike at the Battery Wharf Hotel.

When: Friday, November 22, 2019 at 1:30pm

Where: Battery Wharf Strike Headquarters, 220 Commercial St, Boston, MA 02109

Who: UNITE HERE Local 26 striking hotel workers at the Battery Wharf Hotel, including hotel housekeepers, front desk reception, bellmen, cooks, dishwashers, and more

Note: Battery Wharf Hotel workers involved in the contract fight and UNITE HERE Local 26 Financial Secretary Carlos Aramayo will be available for interview in person at the event as well as by phone.

 

Why: After over eleven weeks on strike, UNITE HERE Local 26 and The Battery Wharf Hotel, part-owned and operated by Westmont Hospitality Group, have reached a tentative agreement. Since the UNITE HERE Marriott Strike of 2018, the Battery Wharf Hotel was the last hotel to agree to a contract that ensure sexual harassment protections, guarantee affordable healthcare, and provide enough income for hotel workers to support their families.

 

On October 3, 2018, Local 26 workers walked out at seven Marriott-operated hotels, including the Aloft Boston Seaport District, the Element Boston Seaport District, the Ritz-Carlton Boston, the Sheraton Boston, the W Hotel Boston, the Westin Boston Waterfront, and the Westin Copley Place. 7,700 Marriott workers in total went on strike from coast to coast. The Marriott Strike resulted in historic gains in the hotel industry.

 

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UNITE HERE Local 26 is the hospitality workers’ union and represents more than 12,000 members working in the hotel, food service, and airport industries in Boston and Rhode Island.  Learn more at www.local26.org

 

UNITE HERE represents over 300,000 members working in the hotel, gaming, food service, and airport industries across the US and Canada. Learn more at www.unitehere.org.

 

Tufts Dining Hall Workers Win First Union Contract

We won! Tufts dining workers have reached a tentative agreement for their first union contract! Strike averted.

Tufts Dining Hall Workers Win First Union Contract!

BREAKING: We won! Tufts dining workers have reached a tentative agreement for their first union contract! Strike averted

Posted by UNITE HERE Local 26 on Friday, 29 March 2019

Tufts University Dining Hall Workers Vote to Strike

For Immediate Release: March 14, 2018
Contact: Nicki Morris, 857-498-2495, nmorris@local26.org

Tufts University Dining Hall Workers Vote to Strike

137 to 17, dining workers vote overwhelmingly to authorize strike

BOSTON, MA—After casting votes late into Thursday evening, UNITE HERE Local 26 Tufts University dining hall workers have overwhelmingly voted to authorized a strike. Now, a strike can be called by the Tufts bargaining committee at any time. After eight months of negotiations for their first union contract, Tufts University administrators potentially face the first strike at a Boston-area university since the 2016 Harvard Dining Hall Workers Strike.

“This is exactly the energy we need to win,” said Trish O’Brien, Tufts Dining worker for thirty years. “I saw my daughter go on strike at Harvard University and it made all the difference. We want everyone treated fairly and we want the same respect as other dining hall workers throughout Boston. We shouldn’t have to strike to win that, but we are prepared for anything.”

Tufts workers are also encouraged by the successful Marriott Strike of 2018, where workers at seven Marriott-operated hotels in Boston went on strike for 46 days winning landmark gains.

“I’m so proud to support the workers. We will back them through the strike, no matter how long it takes until they get a fair contract,” said Yashi Thakurani, Tufts University first-year student.

UNITE HERE Local 26 President Brian Lang said, “These are modest demands. We will see if Tufts has the moral integrity to rise to the occasion.”

Tufts Dining Hall Workers Announce Strike Authorization Vote

For Immediate Release: March 5, 2018

Tufts Dining Hall Workers Announce Strike Authorization Vote

 Overwhelming majority of workers pledge to VOTE YES to strike

 

MEDFORD, MA Surrounded by hundreds of UNITE HERE Local 26 dining hall workers, hotel workers, and Tufts students, Tufts University dining hall workers announced they will be holding a strike vote on March 14. After eight months of negotiations, an overwhelming majority of dining hall workers have pledged to VOTE YES to strike, taking the next step to win their first union contract.

 

In April 2018, Tufts University dining hall workers formed their union and joined UNITE HERE Local 26 with an overwhelming majority voting in favor in their National Labor Relations Board election. Workers are demanding equal treatment of all Tufts dining hall workers and equal terms with dining hall contracts throughout Boston. Tufts University has historically used a “temporary” worker classification that prevents nearly a third of dining hall workers from qualifying for the same wages and benefits as “full-time” classified workers, despite working full-time schedules and with comparable job duties. Many have remained in this “temp” position for years on end.

 

Last Thursday, Somerville City Council voted unanimously in support of a resolution backing Tufts dining hall workers and their demands to be treated equally with other Boston university food service workers. Over the past ten years, UNITE HERE Local 26 dining hall workers in Boston have transformed the industry from part-time, poverty jobs into sustainable careers that support families and communities. Since 2011, food service workers at schools like Northeastern University, Simmons College, and Lesley University, have joined Local 26 and won affordable healthcare, meaningful wage increases and scheduling protections.

 

“I currently pay over $800 a month for family healthcare. I take care of my 2-year-old son, my partner and myself,” said Lucson Aime, a cook at Tufts University for over seven years. “We can no longer afford daycare because after paying our healthcare costs, there is nothing to cover childcare. My coworkers and I should not be forced to choose between healthcare and daycare for our kids. We should be able to pay for both, and more, while working for one of the richest universities in Massachusetts.”

Tufts workers are encouraged by the successful Marriott Strike of 2018, where workers at seven Marriott-operated hotels in Boston went on strike for 46 days winning landmark gains.

 

In October 2016, Local 26 Harvard dining services workers went on strike for 22 days, the first strike on Harvard’s campus in over 30 years. The following year, Northeastern University dining hall workers won their contract after a strike was averted.

 

UNITE HERE Local 26 President Brian Lang said, “We call on Tufts Administration to recognize the urgency of this moment. We will not back down from the life-changing contract we seek at Tufts University.”

 

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UNITE HERE Local 26 is the hospitality workers’ union and represents over 10,000 members working in the hotel, food service, and airport industries in Boston and Rhode Island.  Learn more at www.local26.org

 

UNITE HERE represents over 270,000 members working in the hotel, gaming, food service, and airport industries across the US and Canada. Learn more at www.unitehere.org.