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Battling ongoing unionization efforts sweeping the nation, Starbucks has said its future pay rises will only apply to non-union workers.

While unionizing locations will benefit from raises previously announced in October, CEO Howard Schultz said in an analyst call that the company would be announcing further wage and benefit improvements and enhanced training this coming September.

These future wage boosts, he said, would apply to workers at "company-owned stores," adding that "we do not have the same freedom to make these improvements at locations that have a union or where union organizing is underway."

Instead, such improvements at unionized stores would have to come via bargaining.

A small but growing number of Starbucks locations have voted or plan to vote to unionize, including the first in Minnesota – at 300 Snelling Avenue in St. Paul – last week.

Since then, a second Minnesota location, at 47th and Cedar in Minneapolis, has voted to unionize, with the vote passing 11-3. They had petitioned in February to unionize, criticizing Starbucks over its training, lack of transparency over pay, and lack of PTO for staff with COVID-19.

Its letter also criticized Starbucks for alleged union-busting tactics, saying benefits that workers had long been seeking "magically" became possible once unionization efforts started, and also alleges the company made promises on pay raises it didn't fulfill.

The Minnesota Reformer reports that four more Starbucks locations in Minnesota have filed petitions to unionize, which includes stores in the Mall of America and Eden Prairie.

The raises announced by Starbucks in October, which will apply to all workers, will kick in this summer and bring starting pay to a minimum of $15 per hour, with baristas earning anything from $15-$23 per hour.

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