After historic union vote, North Davis organizers say that the movement continues
By ANTHONY W. ZAMMIKIEL — firstname.lastname@example.org
On Jan. 23, the North Davis Peet’s Coffee location announced in a press release that the employees at the location voted 14-1 in favor of unionization. The National Labor Relations Board certified the election, making the location the first of the chain to unionize.
The news comes nine months after workers at the North Davis location began collaborating with Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1021 and Workers United, a pro-union organization that has contributed to Starbucks unionizations throughout the nation, according to the press release.
The release states that “The election, overseen by the National Labor Relations Board, takes place against a backdrop of renewed union organizing, alongside regional victories like unionized Starbucks Corporation stores in San Francisco, Berkeley, and Santa Cruz.”
In the press release, Trinity Salazar, a barista at the North Davis Peet’s location, shared what unionizing means to them.
“This is the first time in my entire life that I feel I can stay in a job and be happy,” Salazar said. “We are all struggling, and we came together. Now, we’re more united. We have every right to be able to say how much we’re being paid, or at least negotiate it. If you’re sick, you’re sick. The company does not decide it. I don’t want my body to be destroyed when I am twenty-one years old. I’m literally twenty-one with back problems because of coffee.”
Alyx Land, a shift lead with the North Davis location, also discussed the difficulties of working without union representation in the press release.
“It’s the norm in the coffee business to have bare-bones staffing,” Land said. “Management puts the minimum amount of people they can get away with on the floor. Then we have to do a difficult job when we have a line out the door and mobile-order stickers down the counter. It’s really exhausting. I’m excited at what unionizing could do for our entire industry. I want to see our work become more sustainable because I am passionate about what I do and want to keep doing what I do. However, I cannot realistically keep doing this without having more protections and a more sustainable workplace.”
Organizers have shared that success with their election will not conclude organizing efforts for other Peet’s Coffee locations. Peet’s union leaders held a rally on Saturday, Jan. 28 at the North Davis location to help gain momentum.
Employees at the North Davis location continue to encourage community involvement with organizing efforts, and for community members to come into the store to express their support. The union plans to conduct member surveys to determine what workers’ needs are and to elect representatives for the location during future negotiations with Peet’s management.
Written By: Anthony W. Zammikiel — email@example.com
Correction: A previous version of this article state that the North Davis Peet’s Coffee joined Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 121. The correct local number for SEIU is 1021. The article has been updated to reflect this error.