Starbucks workers at Loop store make push to unionize, becoming first in Midwest

Workers at a downtown Starbucks are pushing to unionize, becoming the first store in the Midwest to request a union certification vote at the coffee chain.

Last week, employees submitted signed cards to join the Service Employees International Union, which represents nearly 2 million workers in North America.

A majority of the Loop store's 14 workers are now asking for a vote.


In a letter to Starbucks President and CEO Kevin Johnson, workers called on upper management to hear their concerns.

"We believe forming a union will truly support all partners, allowing us to complete our duties to the best of our abilities. Many of us at store 63483 have invested significant time and energy into Starbucks and want it to be a sustainable career. By seeing improvement in security, wages and labor hours, we know we'd be able to brew our best. Despite our differences- the bottom line is we both want to see our store succeed, which we know we can achieve through supporting and listening to one another," the letter read.

The SEIU director hopes the move will trigger a hearing later this January and an election just a few weeks after.