#RedCupRebellion: Thousands of Starbucks Workers Strike During One of the Company’s Most Popular Days of the Year

#RedCupRebellion: Thousands of Starbucks Workers Strike During One of the Company’s Most Popular Days of the Year

A beloved holiday from Starbucks was turned into a means of demonstration by disgruntled employees as strikes broke out across the country on Thursday.


Over 2,000 Starbucks employees at 112 locations went on strike during Starbucks’ Red Cup Day, a one-day event where customers can order any holiday-crafted beverage and receive that year’s special edition of a free, reusable red cup (while supplies last, of course). The holiday is often fraught with chaos, with people lining up to get one. This year, however, chaos reigned. Strikes organized by a national labor union used the day as a platform to attack Starbucks. This was in spite of the ongoing fight for national Starbucks store unionization.

Related: ‘What a Pleasant Surprise to Brighten My Morning’: Starbucks Is Giving Out Freebies and Customers Are Ecstatic

Throughout the day on Thursday, #RedCupRebellion trended on Twitter, with many posting in support of workers’ unionization efforts and others documenting scenes from the strikes.

#RedCupRebellion is going strong in Philly!! pic.twitter.com/ChSSUXEDW3

— PJB Workers United (@PJBWU) November 17, 2022

There’s power in a union. #redcuprebellion pic.twitter.com/iCxjGiKZbp

— Michelle Eisen (@michelleeisen) November 17, 2022

Red cup day is Starbucks most profitable day of the year and despite all that profit, Starbucks is STILL refusing to work with the union. So @SBWorkersUnited is striking today. SUPPORT THE UNION. DON’T CROSS THE PICKET LINE. #redcuprebellion

— victoria hammett (@HammettVictoria) November 17, 2022

We all need to show @Starbucks that we are FED UP with their treatment of workers! #redcuprebellion pic.twitter.com/oX65cMTjv3

— Jorts (and Jean) (@JortsTheCat) November 17, 2022

We’re making a list and checking it twice! Union busters are not nice. Fair contracts are coming to town! #redcuprebellion pic.twitter.com/W3LKJPdc0l

— Starbucks Workers United (@SBWorkersUnited) November 17, 2022

Starbucks is being accused of several anti-union actions, including retaliating against employees who expressed interest in creating or joining a union and offering additional benefits and raises to non-unionized stores.

The first-ever Starbucks store to unionize was one located in Buffalo, New York in December 2021.

Starbucks was down just over 14.3% in a one-year period as of late Thursday afternoon.

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