Starbucks’ Baristas Could Lose Transgender Care If Unionized

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Starbucks is telling its baristas that unionizing could jeopardize the gender-affirming health care coverage for transgender employees. That’s according to a complaint filed with the federal labor board.

The complaint comes after more than 100 of the coffee chain’s 9,000 U.S. cafes have voted to unionize under Workers United in the last seven months.

Clearly, the union doesn’t want management to get the upper hand in scaring employees. Thus the complaint.

Under interim CEO Howard Schultz, Starbucks has been trying to counter the union push by emphasizing the potential shortcomings of collective bargaining. For example, federal labor laws prohibit the company from unilaterally hiking wages across unionized cafes without contract negotiations, CNBC reports.

Starbucks has covered gender reassignment surgery since 2013. Four years ago, Starbucks broadened the insurance to “a host of procedures that were previously considered cosmetic”.

It included breast reduction or augmentation surgery, facial feminization, and hair transplants.

Beyond transgender surgery, Starbucks reacted to the Supreme Court’s leaked majority opinion overturning Roe v. Wade by offering employees and their dependents reimbursements when traveling over 100 miles from the employee’s home for an abortion.

The company also reaffirmed its offerings of paid leave for adoption, surrogacy, and fertility treatments, as well as free mental health and counseling sessions, according to Daily Wire.

The employees have all that and still vote for unionization? It sounds very greedy.


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