On April 22, 2022, NLRB Region 28 Regional Director Cornele Overstreet petitioned in United States District Court for injunctive relief for victims of unfair labor practices in three cases involving Starbucks retaliating against members of the union organizing committee. Section 10(j) of the National Labor Relations Act authorizes the National Labor Relations Board to seek injunctions against employers and unions in federal district courts to stop unfair labor practices where, due to the passage of time, the normal Board processes are likely to be inadequate to effectively remedy the alleged violations.

The petition explains that after learning its employees were engaging in protected activity, the Employer swiftly retaliated against three of the four members of the union organizing committee. Among other things, Starbucks disciplined, suspended, and discharged one employee, constructively discharged another, and placed a third on an unpaid leave of absence after revoking recently granted accommodations.

Among other remedies, Regional Director Overstreet is asking the court to immediately reinstate these employees with their usual schedules and accommodations, expunge disciplines from their records, and post, distribute, and read the District Court’s Order.

“Employees have the fundamental right to choose whether or not they want to be represented by the union without restraint or coercion by their employer. The faith of Starbucks employees nationwide in workplace democracy will not be restored unless these employees are immediately reinstated under the protection of a federal court order,” said Region 28 Regional Director Cornele Overstreet. “Immediate injunctive relief is necessary to ensure that the Employer does not profit nationwide from its illegal conduct, to protect the employees’ Section 7 rights, to preserve the Board’s remedial power, and to effectuate the will of Congress.”

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