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By Arshreet Singh and David Shepardson
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders on Thursday refused to again down on calls to make Starbucks Corp interim Chief Govt Officer Howard Schultz, who’s stepping down this month, testify at a listening to on the corporate’s compliance with labor legislation.
Starbucks reiterated on Thursday it has no plans to ship Schultz to a U.S. Senate committee listening to set for March 9.
In response, Sanders, chairman of the Senate Well being, Training, Labor and Pensions Committee’s chairman, stated he was “shocked and deeply involved that Howard Schultz would proceed to defy a request made by a majority of members on the Senate HELP Committee.”
He stated a vote will go forward on March 8 on whether or not to concern a subpoena for Schultz to seem.
“Let’s be clear. Howard Schultz is the founding father of Starbucks, he’s the CEO of Starbucks, he’s the spokesperson of Starbucks, and he’ll proceed to be on the Board of Administrators at Starbucks nicely into the longer term,” Sanders stated in a letter Thursday to Starbucks.
“Mr. Schultz has made it clear that he’s the driving pressure of labor coverage at Starbucks,” the Democrat senator stated.
Starbucks famous Schultz is stepping down as CEO later this month and stated he was not the precise witness.
It maintained that its Chief Communications and Public Affairs Officer AJ Jones was finest positioned to deal with the workforce issues raised by members of the committee.
The corporate has additionally supplied to ship Might Jensen, vp for companion and labor relations, and Zabrina Jenkins, performing govt vp and basic counsel.
Democrat lawmakers accuse Starbucks of not partaking in honest negotiations with staff who’re becoming a member of labor unions. The espresso firm has rejected the claims and stated it values its employees’ proper to take part in authorized union-related endeavors.
The corporate stated in its letter on Thursday it “has an unmatched historical past as a mannequin employer.”
Workers at greater than 280 out of its roughly 9,000 company-operated U.S. areas have voted to affix a labor union since 2021. The union is in search of higher pay and advantages, improved well being and security circumstances and protections in opposition to unfair dismissal and self-discipline.
The Senate committee can even vote on authorizing the panel to analyze labor legislation violations by main companies.
(Reporting by Arshreet Singh and David Shepardson; Enhancing by Krishna Chandra Eluri and Sonali Paul)