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Region 6-Pittsburgh Secures Interim Settlement Agreement Requiring Starbucks to Reinstate Fired Workers and Cease and Desist from Further Firings at Two Pittsburgh Stores

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On Thursday, July 13, 2023, the Regional Director of Region 6-Pittsburgh approved an interim settlement agreement with Starbucks providing interim remedies based on multiple unfair labor practice allegations.

Among the remedies obtained in the settlement, Starbucks has agreed to take the following steps:

  • Offer interim reinstatement to four fired employees, pending Board adjudication;
  • Rescind employee work-availability requirements the company had implemented;
  • Cease and desist from future firings of workers for engaging in protected union activity at two Pittsburgh stores; and
  • Post a notice to employees about employee rights under the National Labor Relations Act at the two stores.

This interim settlement was reached under a new initiative from the General Counsel announced last October, under which Regions seek to settle the Section 10(j) aspect of cases warranting interim relief when efforts to settle the administrative case are unsuccessful. Respondents are given the opportunity to voluntarily agree to an interim agreement that includes remedies, such as reinstating alleged discriminatees or agreeing to bargain, pending final resolution of the administrative case by the Board. If Starbucks violates this settlement, the Regional Director will resume consideration of seeking Section 10(j) injunctive relief in district court.

“It is unlawful for employers to retaliate against employees for exercising their right to form a union,” said Region 6 Regional Director Nancy Wilson. “I am very pleased with the interim settlement, which will provide much needed immediate relief to workers at these stores, and I greatly appreciate the hard work of all of the Region 6 staff who assisted in achieving it.”

“Because of this settlement, Starbucks will now offer reinstatement to four fired employees, which is a crucial step in ensuring these workers can freely exercise their right to join together to improve their working conditions and organize a union,” said NLRB General Counsel Jennifer Abruzzo. “Starbucks should take note that the NLRB will continue to vigorously protect workers’ rights to organize and collectively bargain through representatives of their free choosing.”

Established in 1935, the National Labor Relations Board is an independent federal agency that protects employees, employers, and unions from unfair labor practices and protects the right of private sector employees to join together, with or without a union, to improve wages, benefits and working conditions. The NLRB conducts hundreds of workplace elections and investigates thousands of unfair labor practice charges each year. Region 6 serves areas in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia from its Regional Office in Pittsburgh.