Workers at Jacksonville Starbucks shops in San Marco and Mandarin voted to join Workers United, an affiliate of the Service Employees International Union.
They are the second and third Starbucks stores where workers have formed unions in Florida, after a Tallahassee store unionized last week.
A fourth store, in Miami Springs, also voted to unionize Tuesday.
The Mandarin store (located at 11441 San Jose Blvd.) voted 10 to 7 in favor of the union drive, while San Marco (located at 1980 San Marco Blvd.) voted 7 to 1.
Workers at more than 250 U.S. Starbucks stores have filed petitions to unionize with the National Labor Relations Board. Of those, about 70 stores have had union elections, with all but 10 voting to unionize, according to Law360’s online tracker. One of those 10 elections where voters rejected the union was in Miami-Dade County last month, and a Southwest Florida store rejected the union in a vote last week.
The NLRB’s regional staff have said Starbucks has repeatedly violated federal labor law, which Starbucks has denied.
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz has taken a hard-line approach in opposing those workers who have begun unionizing, saying they are a “vocal minority” that “don’t really understand” what they’re doing.
Starbucks has not yet returned a request for comment.
At the San Marco store, workers filed an unfair labor practice charge saying managers removed pro-union literature.
Mason Boykin, one of the Starbucks workers who helped organize the Mandarin store, said the unionization drive kicked off after Starbucks workers in Buffalo became the first in the nation to win an NLRB election last December.
Boykin said they had previously been a part of a leadership-development program with Starbucks and imagined one day managing a store, but unionizing changed Boykin’s perception of the work culture.
“Once I started unionizing, I fell in love with the company but in a whole new way. I’m a lot more partner-focused than company-focused,” Boykin said. “Starbucks in our mission and values, right there, it says, partners at our core. I’m redefining what that means.”
Starbucks must now bargain with the workers at the San Marco and Mandarin stores over working conditions, including pay, scheduling and disciplinary policies.
Boykin said the newly unionized workers will now need to educate themselves on how to push Starbucks to accept the workers’ bargaining proposals.
“As these stores are winning their union elections, Starbucks is heavily delaying the process of collective bargaining. I’m hoping to see a structure where we sit down and educate partners on how to defeat that pushback from Starbucks.”
But Boykin said they hope more Jacksonville Starbucks stores unionize. “One store in Jacksonville is not as strong as four or five stores in Jacksonville.”