4th Street joins Peet's Labor Union

July 8, 2024

Worker’s from the 4th Street Peet’s location in Berkeley filed a petition to join the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). The workers are organizing together to fight for better control over hours, higher wages, longer breaks, better training, and for worker power, among other demands. The 4th Street Workers filed their petition on July 8th.


Peet’s was founded in 1966 in Berkeley in order to raise the quality of the US coffee industry. But while it started as a small-batch, specialty roaster, it has become a multinational corporation earning almost one billion dollars every year in profits. This growth has coincided with exploitative and cost-cutting business practices. Workers across Peet’s face understaffing, lack of training, work intensification, and wage stagnation, leading to deteriorating service.


Isabel, a 4th Street Barista, explained “To me, the Peet's Labor Union means empowerment and liberation for my fellow Peetniks. A less stressful work environment means I can better serve my community.” Fair wages and hours are also a prime concern. Cam, another 4th Street Barista, noted that he’s “joining Peet’s Labor Union to fight for fair wages and working conditions” and was excited to build an organization that would exist for future workers at Peet’s.


The 4th Street Peet’s workers joined the IWW because of its commitment to union democracy, rank and file organizing, and its militant tactics. Frances, one of the shift leads at the 4th Street location, was inspired to join the IWW to unite with the other unionized Peet’s stores due to the IWW’s internal democracy. “We joined the IWW in solidarity with our fellow East Bay Peetniks and to have more direct control over our unionization efforts. I like that the IWW is organized bottom up and truly wishes to change the system rather than just reform it.”


The 4th Street Peet’s workers are excited about the prospects for their union election and for gaining more power over their working and living conditions. They are especially hopeful that their organizing efforts will inspire workers at other Peet’s locations. Nicole, also a 4th Street Barista, observed that “The point of a union is that the bigger we are, the stronger we are. Having more Peetniks join the cause will make us stronger - especially since a lot of our grievances are with Peet’s corporate.” They encourage workers at other Peet’s locations to contact the Peet’s Labor Union to begin organizing.


Press Contact: Kimberly Solis

Branch Secretary

Industrial Workers of the World

Email: peetslaborunion@gmail.org

Rally and Informational Picket!

June 17th, 2023

Multiple Peet's workers took a stand at our first rally to share their personal experiences of mistreatment in the workplace and why we are united in this fight for safety, livable wages, accessible benefits and more. Thank you to everyone who came to listen and support us. 

A special appreciation to Boomshake Music for coming out to support us! 

We want to thank Peet's United for coming out to stand in solidarity with us as we fight for better working conditions! 

March on the Boss! 

June 9, 2023

Today, at approximately 10 AM, members of the newly formed Peet’s Labor Union marched on the boss to inform Peet’s Coffee Inc. at their corporate headquarters in Emeryville, CA that we would be filing a petition with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to form our Union. After many delays from the Peet’s corporate headquarters, we were able to present our letter of demands to the regional manager overseeing the operation of the stores many of our union members work at here in the East Bay. Our letter, which can be found below, outlines the first step in getting our Union to be legally recognized and our grievances to be properly addressed. 


As of this day, 3 Peet’s stores in the East Bay area have filed a petition to unionize, with more coming. Currently, we are not yet aware of the response from Peet’s management or on-site managers at these 3 locations and beyond. However, our social media accounts and labor filings are now publicly available, and we expect a response very soon, remembering that we have a legally protected right to organize this Union. 


We concluded the day by walking over to the Peet’s Emeryville store (a location that has not yet filed to unionize) and celebrated with a round of our favorite coffees and teas. 


Peet’s Labor Union

IWW, IU 640