Unions seeking Dominance over Star Bucks, Amazon & food chain workers
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Karma Management has now become Karma Management Global Consulting Solutions Pvt. Ltd. which was incorporated in the year 2004 and has now completed almost 18 years of its existence.

As late as April 2021, Karma Global took a very bold step of venturing into foreign shores in terms of shoving up its business in countries like the US, UK, UAE, Canada, Philippines, and Asia.

It has already made its mark in terms of providing excellent services in the areas of payroll, outsourcing, recruitment and talent acquisition, and regulatory compliance in these foreign countries.

In fact, the CVO and MD, Pratik Vaidya of Karma Management were selected by SME Forum to lead a Select US Summit last month where he took along a delegation of over hundreds of SME Members for business discussions with the authorities in the States as well as with the entrepreneurs and Innovators of many countries who were present in this forum.

Karma thus entails the compliances of global clients in these countries as well, and in keeping with the global scenario, it does keep a very hard track on the status of global compliances all around the world and especially so, it keeps an update on what is happening as far as people,  wages, work, and benefits are concerned across the globe.


Let us take a look at the dominant role of emerging independent unions in the US specifically the current happenings in  AMAZON and STAR BUCKS!

  • A team of Amazon workers has forced the technology giant to recognize a trade union in the US for the first time.
  • Workers at a New York warehouse voted 55% in favor of joining the Amazon Labor Union.
  • The group is led by former Amazon worker Chris Smalls, who made his name protesting against safety conditions at the retail giant during the pandemic.
  • Mr.  Smalls’ victory marks a major defeat for Amazon, which had fiercely fought against unionization.
  • However, in Alabama, where Amazon was facing a separate union drive, the company appeared to have fended off activists in a tight contest in which challenged ballots could yet overturn that result.
  • Together, the two elections mark a milestone for activists, who have long decried labor practices at Amazon, the country’s second-largest employer.
  • Mr.  Smalls emerged from the vote count looking tired but jubilant and popped open a bottle of champagne he was handed by supporters.
  • “We did whatever it took to connect with these workers,” he told the crowd, recounting an against-the-odds campaign that started with “two tables, two chairs and a tent” and relied on an online fundraiser for money.
  • Over 50 Amazon warehouses contacted the ALU in attempts to organize their own workplaces, with some facilities from Canada, India, South Africa, and the United Kingdom asking the ALU for assistance.




In a statement, Amazon said it was disappointed by the loss in New York and that it was evaluating how to proceed.

It also accused regulators of improperly influencing the vote.

“We believe having a direct relationship with the company is best for our employees,” the company said. “We’re evaluating our options, including filing objections based on the inappropriate and undue influence by the National Labor Relations Board”.

Rebecca Givan, professor of labour studies at Rutgers University, said Amazon’s defeat by Mr. Smalls and his team of worker-organizers was a “really big deal”, calling it a “David and Goliath story” that upset the odds.

But she warned he will be facing another tough fight when it comes to contract negotiations.

“Amazon will do everything it can to undo this success, to break up these workers and to try to stop the momentum that will inevitably come from this victory,” she said.


The Amazon Labor Union (ALU) is an independent labor union specifically for Amazon workers, created on April 20, 2021.

On April 1, 2022, the Amazon workers at a warehouse in Staten Island, JFK8, backed by the ALU became the first unionized Amazon workers recognized by the National Labor Relations Board.

The day after a group of Amazon warehouse workers on Staten Island voted to form a union—potentially one of the biggest labor victories since the nineteen-thirties

JFK8 warehouse

Over a five-day period between March 25 and 30, 2022, workers voted for unionizing the JFK8 warehouse in Staten Island. On April 1, 2022, the ballot count concluded with 2,654 in favor of unionizing and 2,131 voting against it, officially resulting in the creation of the Amazon Labor Union as the first independent Amazon union in the United States.

LDJ5 warehouse

On March 2, 2022, the NLRB approved a union election at the second of the four New York City warehouses, LDJ5.

Unions are forming at Starbucks, Apple, and Google.

  • activity is picking up elsewhere in retail and tech at big companies that are generally viewed as progressive, with no history of labor unions.
  • As of Wednesday, 209 Starbucks stores have officially voted to unionize according to the National Labor Relations Board.
  • First-ever unions have also formed at an Apple store in Maryland, a  Google Fiber contractor, REI, Trader Joe’s, Kickstarter, and Activision Blizzard.
  • “There’s really no rational world in which the Amazon Labor Union or Starbucks Workers United should win,” said John Logan, a labor and employment studies professor at San Francisco State University. “And yet they did, and in the case of Starbucks Workers United, they won over and over and over again.
  • The wave at Starbucks started in December with a store in Buffalo, New York, where workers voted 19 to eight to join the large, established union. In one example of the benefits a big union can bring, Workers United has created a $ 1 million fund to support Starbucks workers who lose wages as a result of organizing activities like striking.
  • The movement spread fast. Within six weeks, about 20 other stores filed for elections. Eight months later, about 45 elections have failed, and more than 200 of Starbucks’ 9,000 U.S. stores have unionized.
  • “A lot of it is concentrated amongst young workers, sometimes college-educated young workers, often working in sort of low-paying service sector jobs: overworked, underpaid, overeducated workers,” Logan said. He said their level of enthusiasm is causing a rush of panic elsewhere in the corporate world.
  • “The CEOs of all of these big companies are horrified by what happened at Starbucks and they’re thinking this is what we want to avoid at all costs,” Logan said.
  • CNBC talked to workers inside the unions forming at Starbucks and Apple about why the movements are gaining traction now. 


Here’s why workers are organizing now

“It has to do with the pandemic,” said Laura Garza, a barista who helped organize her New York City-based Starbucks location, which voted to unionize in April. “It made a lot of workers that continued to work during the pandemic reevaluate what is most important to them. And honestly, it has to go to better pay, livable wage for everybody.”

In addition to the pandemic conditions, numerous other factors have collided to create what labor experts call a perfect storm for organizing. The U.S. has seen four decades of stagnant wages. Companies that already had healthy profits before the pandemic made even more money after lockdowns. And there are lots of jobs available without enough applicants to fill them. It is understood that the administration is pro-union.


What unionized workers want

  • Workers in unions make on average 16.6% more than nonunion workers, amounting to almost $200 per week.
  • “If unions weren’t effective for workers, companies wouldn’t fight them so hard,” said Steffans of CWA. “They know that workers will make more money first and foremost when they organize and choose to join a union.”
  • “There are so many new jobs out there,” Furchtgott-Roth said. “My message is: There are people who would hire you on a different schedule and probably at a higher rate of pay.”
  • But workers are looking at how well their employers are performing and wondering why they’re not getting rewarded equally. For example, Google parent Alphabet recorded its fastest revenue growth rate since 2007 last year. Apple’s margin has been steadily rising and the company closed 2021 with its biggest quarter ever for sales, at almost $124 billion.
  • In addition to higher pay, Apple store workers are asking for more time to spend with each customer and better opportunities for career advancement, like moving into corporate jobs.
  • “My job is not just being a technical specialist,” Reeder said. “I’m a marriage counselor. I’m a therapist. I’m a punching bag sometimes. We are the line of defense for Apple and even being technically retail, we’re very skilled workers. We go through a lot of training. Sometimes you just don’t feel as valued as we should.”
  • At Starbucks, unionized baristas want a boost to the current starting salary of $15 per hour, more staffing where it’s needed and more say over their schedules. They also want better benefits.
  • “We’re going to be asking for more comprehensive mental health benefits as well because working during a pandemic has been enormously stressful,” Garza said.
  • Whether the organizing momentum spreads more widely across the economy may depend on how vocal and successful workers are at Starbucks, Apple and elsewhere.
  • “I hope that we can be a resource and then motivation for these other stores to unionize,” Reeder said. “Stand your ground. Make your voice heard. Whether they want to listen or not, now they have to.”



It is always good to act trustworthy and be compliant with the laws of the land. Karma Management always advises its clients to be on the good side of the law and to abide by the same. 

In this respect, it offers a plethora of excellent services in terms of documentation compliance and validity of licenses for running the business and also supports establishments and union-afflicted workers to take a just stand on issues, in the company’s interest and not on trivial grounds just for the sake of it, to show the level of aggression. 

A kind of balance has to be maintained and in fact, The Centenary Declaration calls upon the ILO to carry forward with unrelenting vigor its constitutional mandate for social justice by further developing its human-centered approach to the future of work, which puts workers’ rights and the needs, aspirations, and rights of all people at the heart of economic, social and environmental policies. It also underlines the significance of promoting multilateralism and ensuring policy coherence within the multilateral system.

Respect for all fundamental principles and rights at work (FPRW), including freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining, is an essential foundation of the ILO and key to successful policy and decision-making. As the world of work is changing at an ever-increasing pace, strong, influential and inclusive social dialogue is, and will be, a key vehicle to shape the world of work that we want.


For our study and learning, let us simplify and look at the mistakes made by some of the establishments in the above-mentioned cases :

The company in question already poured resources into fighting the unionizing efforts, which it sees as an obstacle to business flexibility and warehouse efficiency.

Officials have said the company offers competitive pay and benefits and believes it is better to work directly with workers.

In meetings about the vote, representatives of the company questioned union leaders’ ability to win more in contract negotiations.

The company said it may challenge the results, citing the timing of a decision by the National Labor Relations Board to sue the company last month alleging unfair labour practices in New York.

As part of its statement, it shared comments by two of the country’s most powerful business lobbies also raising objections, including a letter from the National Retail Federation to congressional leaders that called for an investigation of the matter.

Organizers said the company made critical mistakes ahead of the vote, such as pushing to reverse policies relaxed under Covid, including allowing workers to keep their mobiles with them while working.


Proprietory blog of Karma Global  Tech Firm

This blog has been compiled by the internal staff of Karma with the knowledge and expertise that they possess, for its monthly newsletter Issue 04 of October  2022 in case of specific or general information or compliance updates for that matter, kindly reach out to the

Marketing Team – Kush@karmamgmt.com / yashika@karmamgmt.com

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