Starbucks has just filed a request with the San Jose City Council to pay its employees less than the current law permits -- all so the multi-billion dollar company can pump up its profits even more.
Starbucks submitted this request with a specific location in mind -- the San Jose Convention Center in California. San Jose has one of the most progressive living wage ordinances in the country, requiring government contractors to pay their employees a minimum living wage. But because the council is keen to fill up some empty store-fronts, Starbucks might get away with being above the law.
The city council will vote in a matter of days. We have to act fast while the request is still pending.
Tell Starbucks to drop its request and pay all its workers a living wage.
The Starbucks website states that “Starbucks believes that conducting business ethically and striving to do the right thing are vital to the success of the company.” But this request proves that Starbucks is just looking to stiff employees at what’s sure to be a busy location, for the sake of profit. As the largest coffee chain in the world, Starbucks can afford to pay its workers a living wage.
If we all work together to tell Starbucks to drop the proposal, we can make a tremendous difference, but we must do it now.
Starbucks is endangering San Jose’s progressive living wage standards. The living wage standards, established in 1998, require contractors and vendors contracted by the city to pay employees equitably and sufficiently. If Starbucks win in San Jose, they could push this fight to other cities where living wage ordinances exist.
Tell Starbucks: withdraw your request to underpay employees.
Working families in California already struggle to make ends meet in one of the most expensive states to live in the USA. According to experts, it costs double the salary that the minimum wage law demands just to get by -- and Starbucks is trying to make it even harder for low-wage workers.
If Starbucks is allowed to bypass the law this one time, it will set a dangerous precedent that will allow other multinational corporations to cut their costs at the expense of their workers.
We have stood up on behalf of low-wage workers before, supporting Walmart workers to strike and standing up to McDonalds when it suggested workers take up a second job to achieve a living wage. We can do it again now. Let's make sure Starbucks can't get away with this.
Starbucks, Developer Want to Bypass City's Living Wage Policy, San Jose Inside, December 16
Living Wage: San Jose should not weaken its law, San Jose Mercury News, December 12