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Starbucks workers in Iowa City have filed a petition to unionize, signifying what would be the first unionized location in Iowa for the coffee chain. The petition was filed by workers at the downtown 228 S Clinton St. location on March 27. Employees posted a video to TikTok announcing the campaign. On Twitter, that video has more than 50,000 views. “In the nearly two years I’ve been with Starbucks, I’ve learned how much I value a workplace that is safe for employees, efficient for customers and fun for everyone," said Molly Belvo, a partner and organizer at the Iowa City location, in a statement. "Instead of prioritizing these essential company standards, those at the very top of this company are focused solely on making record profits. Unionizing will ensure these needs are met and create the best environment possible.” https://twitter.com/SBWorkersUnited/status/1640432527046328321?s=20&link_id=2&can_id=bb7861dfba64c769204e0c750927bdfd&source=email-iowa-city-starbucks-workers-are-unionizing&email_referrer=email_1860225&email_subject=iowa-city-starbucks-workers-are-unionizing According to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) filing, 31 employees are included in the petition, including all full-time and regular part-time baristas and shift supervisors. Store managers, office clericals, guards, professional employees and supervisors are not included. In an email to the CBJ, Ms. Belvo said the workers will need to work to remain "unified against union busting tactics" before an election takes place. "Our store is looking to improve working conditions through things such as wage increases, guaranteed benefits and safer conditions at our stores, especially those that should be already followed per Starbucks standards," she said. A news release from Starbucks Workers United points to 80 official complaints made by the NLRB against Starbucks, encompassing more than 1,400 violations of federal labor law, as reason for continuing to bring the fight against Starbucks leadership. More than 290 Starbucks stores in 42 states and the District of Columbia have successfully unionized. The first Starbucks store voted to unionize in Buffalo, New York in December 2021. No other Starbucks stores in in Iowa have filed to unionize so far. "It is our hope that our union campaign will inspire other stores to see that they deserve power in decisions that affect their store," said Ms. Belvo. Starbucks' media team did not return a request for comment. NLRB prosecutors concluded Starbucks illegally refused to negotiate at dozens of newly-unionized cafes across the country, Bloomberg reported March 27. A report from More Perfect Union found the company violated labor law when it excluded unionized stores from a policy that introduced credit card tipping. Those are just the most recent reports of Starbucks opposing unions and labor efforts, lead by former CEO Howard Schultz, who briefly ran for U.S. President as a Democrat nominee during the 2020 election cycle. He has since stepped down as CEO earlier than expected — and was replaced by Laxman Narasimhan, a former PepsiCo executive and CEO of Reckitt Benckiser Group — ahead of Senate hearings where Mr. Schultz will testify on Starbucks' business labor practices. In response to his appointment and growing concerns over Starbucks' tactics, Mr. Narasimham has said he will work in Starbucks stores as a barista once a month, reported CNN. The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, lead by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT.) will question Mr. Schultz over "allegations that Starbucks illegally intimidated, harassed and fired Starbucks workers who helped organize unionization efforts," The Hill reported. Sen. Sanders voiced his approval and sided with workers during the Ingredion strike in Cedar Rapids earlier this year when he wrote a letter to CEO Joseph Zallie. He also wrote on the workers' behalf during labor disputes in 2015, back when the company was known as Penford Products.