Organising Feedback report
As part of global efforts to organise unions across Starbuck stores, Organise Now! joined a Day of Action hosted by Unite Hospitality and BFAWU. Volunteers leafleted and spoke with workers in their local Starbucks.
You can read the report on the day below, or the pdf here.
A month ago, my union backed the launch of a new peer to peer organising project, Organise Now! alongside Strike Map and Notes for Below. In that short time we have offered advice to many workers across our economy and recruited over 120 volunteers.
As we continue to experience an exciting moment of opportunity, with national strikes back on the agenda and renewed militancy in unions, our movement has a rare opportunity to start organising in new parts of the economy.
That is why Organise Now matters in the current moment: we want to take that energy into new workplaces, but also connect to the wider union movement. This is about giving workers the confidence and resources to fight, but also for existing organisers to learn from and be inspired by these new struggles.
Organise Now! was delighted to be a part of a joint effort to speak to coffee shop workers across the UK on 17 November, as part of UNITE's #BaristasUnited campaign and the global day of solidarity with Starbucks workers.
In USA Starbucks Workers United (SBW), have been a source of inspiration in leading strikes and winning trade union recognition through vibrant and dynamic campaigns that we have a lot to learn from.
Through our first 'guerrilla' organising day, our volunteers and supporters learnt so much and we were able to connect and speak to workers in a refreshing way, that will only strength the BaristasUnited campaign by Unite Hospitality. This is further outlined in our brief report below which gives information on how our volunteers got on visiting coffee shops across the country.
We urge all unions to join with mine and support Organise Now! to reinvigorate and grow our movement.
At Organise Now! our mission is no worker left behind.
Join us today and help make this a reality.
Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union General Secretary on behalf of Organise Now!
To coincide with the day of action by Unite Hospitality and BFAWU at Starbucks (17 November), Organise Now! I recruited volunteers to go to stores, speak to workers and encourage them to unionise as part of the #BaristasUnited campaign.
We recruited 55 volunteers and distributed over 2,500 leaflets. This meant the day in total covered 50 towns and cities across the UK.
Volunteers used 1-1 conversations, leaflets in teams in stores across the country. Ahead of the action we undertook a public meeting to recruit more volunteers to help us on the day of action and then inviting them to a briefing led by Starbucks Workers United (SBW) in the USA on tactics and strategies to use.
Below is the plan that Organise Now! volunteer and coordinators followed.
What we sent
- X100 Baristas United UNITE Hospitality leaflets
- X5 Sheets of Organise Now! stickers
- X1 Barista walk around guidance sheet
What we asked facilitators to do
- Contact volunteers in your area and arrange a meeting place and time.
- Visit the Starbucks (or multiple Starbucks) in your area and attempt to speak to workers within the shop, handing out leaflets- the walk around guidance sheet should help.
- Take a photo/s of your volunteer team and upload it to social media tagging in Organise Now!, UNITE Hospitality and BFAWU, all posts need the #BaristasUnited.
- Use our feedback form to note down how conversations went, this is available here: www.organisenow.org.uk/starbucks-feedback
Social media on the day and other digital actions
Please tag the following accounts during the day using #BaristasUnited
- Twitter accounts: @organise_now, @FairHospitality, @BFAWUOfficial
- Facebook accounts: @getorganisednow, @UniteHospitality, @bfawu
- Instagram accounts: @organise_now, @unitehospitality
Alongside social media from your volunteer teams there are three digital actions we asked all volunteers to take via: www.changeisbrewing.co.uk
- Email the CEO
- Write a review
- Tweet at Starbucks
Briefing calls available
Date: 14 November
All volunteers briefing
Date: 15 November
Top line stats from feedback of volunteers
Below are some headline statistics from the feedback submitted by volunteers, this is followed by the submissions in more detail.
Below are anonymised responses recorded by volunteers.
Map of Feedback
Below is a map of all the feedback forms submitted by our volunteers. To read the detail of this feedback, please read further into this review.
Watch and share our wrap-up film
- Identifying the manager or supervisor is important to enable good dialogue with workers.
- Do not underestimate that the employer has notified employees and they are prepared for you.
- Despite good intel from baristas, you may need to return to a shop multiple times throughout the day as busyness varies.
- On the whole most barista staff might not be aware of trade unions and their importance, but usually are open to discussions about improving working lives.
- Speaking to workers is fun and we should do more of it.
"We had 20 volunteers out in Glasgow, speaking to over 100 workers in Starbucks, Costa, Pret and Caffè Nero. They had an overwhelmingly positive response from workers (and customers) who think that the Baristas United campaign is long overdue to drive up standards across coffee."
Unite the Union