Employees of the Massapequa Starbucks store – at Massapequa Village Square on Merrick Road – have decided in a vote of 19 to 8 to unionize through the Workers United NY/NJ Regional Joint Board. Once the vote is certified by the National Labor Relations Board, it will be the first unionized Starbucks location on Long Island.
The vote came after Massapequa Starbucks employees sent a petition to unionize in February, joining a movement of more than 250 locations nationwide doing the same, including three others on Long Island.
“I’m so glad that working class people are getting together and making changes, it’s what we all deserve,” said ToniAnn Buscemi, a worker at the Massapequa Starbucks. “I hope that we all continue to inspire others.”
Starbucks employees at the Massapequa location cited unfair wages and Covid-19 safety concerns as reasons for seeking a unionization vote in their initial petition filing letter. On the same day that Massapequa Starbucks unionized, a Starbucks in Brooklyn, located in the Caesar’s Bay Shopping Center, became the first to unionize in the borough.
“Today is a truly historic day,” said John R. Durso, president of the Long Island Federation of Labor (AFL-CIO). “After months of courageous organizing from the partners at the Massapequa Starbucks, Long Island officially has its first unionized Starbucks location. The entire Long Island union movement is so proud to welcome these workers into our union family.”
While Massapequa’s bid for unionization was successful, the Starbucks in Great Neck’s was not, failing in a vote of 5 to 6. Union officials from Starbucks Workers United claim that a “very intense union busting campaign” prevented the vote from passing, and they plan to challenge it. They also said that 22 unfair labor practice allegations have been filed against the location on behalf of unionizing workers.
Starbucks could not immediately be reached for comment.
Two other Long Island Starbucks locations, one at the Gallery at Westbury and another in Farmingville, are awaiting vote counts.