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Starbucks is raising barista wages by at least 3% starting next year

Starbucks is making some improvements in employee benefits and wages, but union workers might not see all the perks.
Starbucks is raising barista wages by at least 3% starting next year
Posted at 6:18 PM, Nov 06, 2023

A record year of revenue for Starbucks is also having a positive effect on its hourly employees, but some new perks are only for those who haven't unionized.

The company said Monday it's raising hourly pay for U.S. retail employees by at least 3% starting Jan. 1, and those with longer tenures get even bigger raises, with those working there for two to five years seeing at least a 4% raise and those there five or more years possibly seeing a 5% boost. 

It also announced its hourly workers will accrue paid vacation time sooner.

The announcement comes less than a week after Starbucks announced it expects to double hourly income from 2020 to 2025 through higher wages and more hours. 

As of now, employees at the Seattle-based coffee chain's 16,000+ stores receive between $15 and $24 an hour, and the equivalent of $27 including its benefits package. 

But some of the announced improvements won't be eligible for unionized workers, as the company and the Workers United union have yet to reach a labor agreement at the 366 U.S. stores that have voted to unionize since 2021.

SEE MORE: What is the state of unions in the US?

For example, the 3% and 4% increases will be present for both union and non-union stores, but the 5% raise, which is a new benefit, has to be negotiated with Workers United and therefore isn't available to unionized stores, according to The Associated Press.

The same goes for the shortened time period to accrue vacation days. Only non-unionized stores will be moving from the one-year to 90-day timeline.

And Starbucks' first-ever North American Barista Championship will also only be available to workers at non-unionized stores because it involves travel and prize money.

Starbucks has previously been in hot water for providing benefit changes only to non-unionized employees.

In September, a National Labor Relations Board judge ruled the company illegally provided wage increases to only non-union workers, but Starbucks appealed, saying board rules don't let them make wage or benefit changes for unionized employees.

Workers United said it will file unfair labor practice charges against Starbucks concerning the new wage rules, according to the AP.

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