Already a subscriber? Log in
- Unparalleled business coverage of the Iowa City / Cedar Rapids corridor.
- Immediate access to subscriber-only content on our website.
- 26 issues per year delivered digitally, in print or both.
- Support locally owned and operated journalism.
On Thursday, Iowa City Starbucks employees picketed outside the Clinton Street Starbucks as part of a nationwide protest called the “Red Cup Rebellion.” In a plea to the coffee giant, baristas are demanding an end to its refusal to bargain with them concerning staffing, scheduling, and other issues. The strike coincided with Red Cup Day, one of Starbucks' busiest customer traffic days, during which tens of thousands of free reusable cups are distributed. A small group of Starbucks employees and supporters gathered outside the downtown location, 228 S. Clinton St. in Iowa City, holding signs and playing upbeat music. Cars that passed the group honked in support, emitting cheers from protesters. The Clinton Street Starbucks voted 25-0 to unionize last March, and have staged at least three protests since then. Abigail Scheppmann, spokesperson for the striking workers and five-year employee of Starbucks, said the ideal outcome would be the ability to bargain a contract with the coffee giant. “We just want our fair cut,” she said.