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Minneapolis Starbucks workers join colleagues in nationwide strike

Minneapolis Starbucks employees strike
Minneapolis Starbucks employees strike 01:54

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- The coffee drinks stopped flowing Sunday at a Minneapolis Starbucks.

Dozens of employees at the 47th and Cedar location were on strike with colleagues across the country as they face off with management. The strike will continue Monday.

"This job sucks," said Ethan Tinklenberg, a barista and leader in the newly-formed union. "This job is not fun and we're not getting paid enough to deal with the stuff we have to deal with every single day."

But Tinklenberg says this strike isn't for higher wages -- not yet anyway. He says they're striking now because management plans to extend store hours, which they're not allowed to do without negotiating first.

"It's not about the change itself. It's about them doing it without even talking to us," Tinklenberg said. "We don't want them to do this and get away with it and then think they can do worse."  


When the Starbucks unionized in April, the store became the second location in Minnesota to do so. Now there are four.

"In my opinion, Starbucks is afraid of us pushing for better conditions, better wages," Tinklenberg said.

In a media statement on the strike, Starbucks said in part, "We respect our partners' right to engage in any legally protected activity or protest without retaliation. We always do our best to listen to the concerns of all our partners."

While workers at a number of major corporations like Starbucks, Amazon and Apple have moved toward unionizing, nurses at a Mayo Clinic hospital in Mankato voted this week to no longer be represented by the Minnesota Nurses Association.

Nurses who led the decertification effort said in a statement their voices weren't being heard to promote changes for better patient care.

The MNA called the vote a "sad step."

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