Starbucks, one of the largest coffee chains in the world, has been under fire for its anti-union stance. In a recent Senate hearing, former CEO and presidential candidate Howard Schultz, along with current CEO Kevin Johnson, faced tough questions from Senator Bernie Sanders regarding the company’s resistance to unionization efforts. The hearing shed light on Starbucks’ history of discouraging unionization, including hiring union-busting consultants and holding mandatory anti-union meetings for employees.
But how much has Starbucks actually spent on union-busting? Unfortunately, we don’t know the full extent of their spending because of the “advice” loophole in reporting requirements. This loophole allows employers to keep their spending on union-busting consultants and activities hidden from public disclosure by claiming the consultant was only providing “advice.” As a result, workers are left in the dark about the full extent of their company’s union-busting efforts and the resources being poured into it.
This is why we need to reinstate the “persuader” rule, which was proposed by the Obama administration to close the “advice” loophole and require employers to disclose all their union-avoidance activities and expenditures. Unfortunately, the rule was blocked by business groups and eventually rescinded by the Trump administration. But now, with a new administration in power, we have a chance to push for its reinstatement and bring transparency to the anti-union tactics of corporations like Starbucks.
If you believe in workers’ rights and the importance of unions, please consider signing our petition calling on President Biden to reinstate the persuader rule and close the advice loophole. Let’s demand that corporations like Starbucks are held accountable for their union-busting efforts and that workers have the right to know the full extent of these activities. Together, we can fight for a more just and equitable workplace for all.