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Leafleting Starbucks in Leamington

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buenaventura
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Feb 14 2007 13:04
Leafleting Starbucks in Leamington

We will be leafleting a couple of Starbucks in Leamington this Saturday 17th of Feb. together with anarchists from Coventry and Northampton.
This action is part of the international day of action against Starbucks and will raise issues concerning workers rights, producers rights, the IWW and SolFed.

Jason Cortez
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Feb 14 2007 13:50

cool smile grin

ftony
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Feb 14 2007 13:56

would you like some wobs with that?

if so let me know what time/place you're meeting and i can forward a message to folks round your parts

Jason Cortez
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Feb 14 2007 13:59

fTony you shouldn't need to ask wink

magnifico
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Feb 14 2007 14:19

I was just about to post this up myself...

Don't think i can make it as I have an essay due in monday which I'm way behind on, but we have some people driving over. Some of them are doing anti-cuts and anti-war stalls in Northampton in the morning, so they are aiming to get to Leam at around 2pm, so we could either do it in shifts or all do it together in the afternoon. If you could pm me or post on here where they should meet you that would be great.

buenaventura
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Feb 15 2007 01:18

The plan is to meet infront of the Parish Church at 2pm.

futuretech68
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Feb 15 2007 01:37

Thats the parish in lemington of course then ...

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Bubbles
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Feb 15 2007 04:29
futuretech68 wrote:
Thats the parish in lemington of course then ...

You gonna show up futuretech68?

futuretech68
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Feb 15 2007 04:35

well if its a spur of the moment thing .... u know people from northampton solfed ....

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Bubbles
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Feb 15 2007 04:42
futuretech68 wrote:
well if its a spur of the moment thing .... u know people from northampton solfed ....

I'm a bit confused by that. What yah mean?

buenaventura
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Feb 15 2007 12:20

parish church in leam ya

beth
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Feb 15 2007 22:40

Which Starbucks is the stall going to be at?
I can't come as I've got a friend from home visiting but we'll come along and say hi...

magnifico
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Feb 15 2007 22:54

I'd advise doing one that isn't entirely inside an indoor shopping centre, not worth the hassle of security guards and shit saying you're on private property.

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Bubbles
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Feb 16 2007 02:17
magnifico wrote:
I'd advise doing one that isn't entirely inside an indoor shopping centre, not worth the hassle of security guards and shit saying you're on private property.

They are sometimes not even proper starbucks when inside large malls and or theatres. Sometimes a mall or large movie house will rent the starbucks brand, name and coffee and hire workers under the mall or movie name. So alot of the time they arnt even starbucks workers, just workers for the mall who have starbucks aprons and serve starbucks coffee.

magnifico
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Feb 18 2007 15:19

Just had a report back from this.

Apparently there were nine people turned up for the picket, they leafleted inside one store (which was inside a shopping centre) and picketed outside another one.

Response from the public was generally quite good, with people saying they were disgusted with starbucks etc.

A few of the staff in one of the shops apparently came out and talked to them, apparently the main message being that they really enjoy working for starbucks and if people are being badly treated in America they probably deserved it and anyway it's not their problem over here in England. Not the ideal kind of contact to have obviously but it sounds like these people were so far up the arse of their employer they're beyond help anyway. Also I'm sure it's easier in this type of situation for an employee who loves their boss to say so as opposed to one who doesn't. Hopefully they got somebody thinking, or had a few of the less vocal workers thinking 'fuck yeah' at any rate. Maybe someone who was there (buenaventura or bomb?) could add to this if they see it?

buenaventura
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Feb 18 2007 16:02

The worker we talked to was a seventeen year old girl that had a negative gut reaction to what we were doing. She had no understanding of the divergent interests between workers and management, she had assimilated all the corporate lies of "teamwork" between workers and management, the goodwill and humane face of starbucks,etc. It was impossible to get through to her in that situation. I think unionising Starbucks is a very difficult goal, the workforce is very young, flex and temp. shifts, and has no consciousness. The only way of positively approaching the workforce in my opinion is to visit them at times when they are not busy, talk to them calmly and give them a couple of leaflets as "information" they might be interested in. Combining a boycott picket leafleting and at the same time trying to approach the workers should not be tried again. Its one or the other. The combination makes the workers feel alienated from the issue, it helps bring ties between workers and management against the "disorderly behaviour" of the people that are leafleting and makes them get a negative gut reaction to what we are doing and the ideas we are trying to convey.

P.s. an interesting bit of info. we got from the worker is that although Starbucks sells both Fairtrade and free trade coffee, when engaging with a costumer the workers are told to mention that although the free trade coffee does not have a Faritrade sticker it has still been "fairly traded" with producers. Its obviously a misleading tactic that could maybe be followed up legally? (just a thought)

magnifico
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Feb 18 2007 16:18

Yeah that sounds sensible. Kind of difficult if you are doing a picket and a worker comes out to speak to you though. I've copied part of your post onto the 'libcom wobblies' forum to see what they think, presumably they've had to consider these problems themselves in the past as part of their organising drive.

fudge
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Feb 18 2007 18:52

I was with the group from Northampton and was outside the
Starbucks store not in the shopping centre.
I was quite shocked and dissapointed that the vast majority
of shoppers went into Starbucks regardless of us, and the attitude of some of them.
They seemed very middle class and probably approved of Starbucks stance.

magnifico
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Feb 18 2007 19:00

Well, you were north of the river, what else did you expect in 'Royal Leamington Spa'? wink

Unfortunately respect for picket lines is very low compared to what it apparently was a few decades ago. I also think a lot of such protests are held for reasons which most people don't really care about, which kind of devalues the ones which are done for reasons of workers' solidarity. It's up to us to change all this! I'm sure you got some people thinking, and were out there promoting the idea of workers' solidarity which can't be a bad thing.

fudge
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Feb 18 2007 19:19
magnifico wrote:
Well, you were north of the river, what else did you expect in 'Royal Leamington Spa'? wink

Unfortunately respect for picket lines is very low compared to what it apparently was a few decades ago. I also think a lot of such protests are held for reasons which most people don't really care about, which kind of devalues the ones which are done for reasons of workers' solidarity. It's up to us to change all this! I'm sure you got some people thinking, and were out there promoting the idea of workers' solidarity which can't be a bad thing.

It was well worth doing.
I did have the idea to get some leaflets saying
get a free coffee with this leaflet.
That would have been amusing to watch them demanding their
free coffees.

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Steven.
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Feb 18 2007 19:22

It's good to see stuff like this reported, then discussed so we can all learn from it, and i'm very glad libcom can help. Nice one everyone.

magnifico
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Feb 18 2007 19:24

ha that would be funny, probably would really piss off the staff though, which isn't exactly what we're after. Maybe do it while that girl who loves starbucks is serving wink

magnifico
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Feb 18 2007 19:28

Cheers John, yeah one of the things libcom's well useful for cool

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Steven.
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Feb 18 2007 20:06

I imagine for a 17-year-old working in starbucks would be quite good, no guaranteed hours is fine if you don't have kids or have to pay rent. And it'd be better pay than a shop, or most pubs/restaurants. It might be worth putting into perspective the wage situation from the point of view of an adult with kids or something in a similar situation?

magnifico
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Feb 18 2007 21:21

Yeah, good thinking.

Keyser Soze
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Jun 26 2007 09:34

I've heard from mates still in Nuneaton that Starfucks have opened up a branch there, unfortunatley I've moved up north now but if a leafleting of the Nuneaton Starfucks is ever organised for a weekend I would love to come and help out, I know a handful of people who may be interested in helping out too, would need some prior warning though.