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New York Metropolis sues Starbucks for firing union organizer

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By Jonathan Stempel

NEW YORK (Reuters) – A New York Metropolis company that oversees office issues mentioned on Friday it had sued Starbucks Corp after the espresso chain illegally fired a longtime barista and union organizer. C when the employees at his retailer voted to affix the union.

The Division of Client and Employee Safety introduced the case on behalf of Austin Lock, a Starbucks worker for 5-3/4 years, who town charged with violating “simply trigger” protections below a 2017 legislation defending fast-food staff. was the primary

The Honest Workweek Act prohibits fast-food employers from firing or shedding staff, or decreasing their hours by greater than 15%, with out trigger or justifiable financial causes.

Starbucks fired Locke on July 5, a month after staff at his retailer within the Astoria part of the borough of Queens determined to unionize, based on a petition filed with town’s Workplace of Administrative Trails and Hearings.

The go well with seeks Locke’s reinstatement and again pay, in addition to civil penalties.

A Starbucks spokeswoman mentioned the Seattle-based firm doesn’t talk about pending litigation, however plans to defend towards claims it violated the legislation.

The petition mentioned Starbucks claimed it fired Locke as a result of he failed to finish a questionnaire required by its Covid-19 protocol, and falsely reported {that a} supervisor put his hand on Locke’s chest. made undesirable contact throughout an argument.

Each incidents happened two days after the unionization vote, the petition mentioned.

In an announcement offered by town, Locke mentioned, “Starbucks continues to wrongfully hearth pro-union staff throughout the nation in retaliation for union organizing.”

He referred to as on Starbucks to barter a contract with Starbucks Employees United, which represents staff at greater than 200 shops.

Final month, Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. agreed to pay practically 13,000 staff $20 million to settle metropolis claims that it violated the Honest Workweek Act.

Chipotle was accused of failing to provide staff their schedules two weeks upfront, paying premium pay for unscheduled shifts, and permitting staff to make use of accrued sick go away.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Modifying by Josie Cao)

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