Starbucks union victory at Phoenix's Scottsdale and Mayo store is delayed but not denied

Phoenix, Arizona - Phoenix's Scottsdale and Mayo store, which has experienced some of Starbucks' worst union-busting efforts, had its union election ballot count on Thursday.

From l. to r.: Bill Whitmire, Alyssa Sanchez, and Laila Dalton rally in Seattle with fellow Starbucks Workers United organizers.
From l. to r.: Bill Whitmire, Alyssa Sanchez, and Laila Dalton rally in Seattle with fellow Starbucks Workers United organizers.  © Collage: Screenshots/Twitter/effortlysslife

In the tally, overseen by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), organizers had to win at least 50% of their store's vote plus one to unionize.

The initial results showed workers voting 8-6 against unionizing, but there were seven challenged ballots – enough to impact the result of the election.

That means there will be further proceedings in the case, and a victory has been delayed but may not be denied.

Throughout their campaign, workers at Scottsdale and Mayo have faced severe backlash over their organizing efforts. Starbucks even fired three local organizing committee members.

In an interview with TAG24, Alyssa Sanchez described how her manager began intentionally scheduling her to work when she had conflicts, before eventually firing her. That behavior only started after she and fellow co-workers began trying to unionize, she said.

Shift supervisor Laila Dalton was fired after she recorded audio on her cellphone while doing inventory in the store's backroom. She had been subjected to repeated harassment by management throughout the organizing campaign. The news of her termination came just one day before ballots were sent out for the union election.

A third organizer named Tyler Gillette, who is autistic, was promised accommodations, but was instead put on "indefinite unpaid leave" after union efforts went public.

Fellow organizing committee member Bill Whitmire told TAG24 that the company's treatment of his colleagues was "really hurtful," but also added extra fire to their store's union campaign.

The NLRB has since issued a complaint against the company and filed a petition in federal court demanding that the workers be reinstated.

In the meantime, Whitmire has set up GoFundMe pages to support Sanchez and Dalton, who not only lost their jobs and means of income when they were fired, but also their college tuition benefits.

Cover photo: Collage: Screenshots/Twitter/effortlysslife

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