Supreme Court will hear case about pro-union baristas’ termination from Starbucks

Supreme Court will hear case about pro-union baristas' termination from Starbucks
Supreme Court will hear case about pro-union baristas’ termination from Starbucks | Image Credit: Yahoo Finance –

The coffee business was ordered to reinstate seven employees at one of its Memphis, Tennessee, locations after a federal agency discovered that the employees had been dismissed for supporting unions. On Friday, the Supreme Court decided to hear Starbucks‘ appeal of the court ruling.

The baristas, known as the “Memphis Seven,” have filed a complaint with the National Labour Relations Board claiming they were sacked for taking part in a public attempt to form a union. A federal appeals court upheld the federal judge’s ruling last year, requiring Starbucks to rehire the employees in 2022.

The criterion that the NLRB uses to pursue court injunctions in their legal battles with employers in administrative hearings is in question.

Starbucks’ lawyers wrote to the Supreme Court arguing that particular courts are giving the NLRB too much latitude and that this “unacceptably threatens the uniformity of federal labour law” by delivering a confusing message to workers throughout the country.

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“We are pleased the Supreme Court has decided to consider our request to level the playing field for all U.S. employers by ensuring that a single standard is applied as federal district courts determine whether to grant 10(j) injunctions pursued by the National Labour Relations Board,” Starbucks told CBS Moneywatch in a statement.

Seven employees were let off after they met with a TV news team in their Memphis location in January 2022 to discuss their union activities and after they made their letter to Starbucks’ CEO publicly available.

Starbucks said that it fired the employees because they opened the store without permission and let customers who weren’t supposed to be there, in violation of a safety standard.

As a result of the Supreme Court’s decision to hear the Memphis case, Starbucks has escalated its conflict with its own workers to include all American workers. In an email statement, Starbucks Workers United stated, “All working people should be appalled and join our fight to ensure corporations are held accountable to the law.”

It is anticipated that a ruling on the case will be made by the end of June.