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Baristas Protest Layoffs

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Starbucks is laying off thousands of workers across the country to keep costs down during the recession, and some current and former baristas say the company isn't treating them fairly.

About a dozen picketers rallied outside a Union Square Starbucks last night, protesting the layoffs and demanding severance pay for all fired workers.

Liberty Locke has been with the company more than two years:

LOCKE: Even this store last week had three people laid off in the middle of the day. They were still on the schedule for the rest of the week, but they were laid off without notice. They just worked their shifts and told that their shifts were over.

REPORTER: The coffee giant released a statement saying: "Starbucks is recognized as a 'Best Place to Work' because we have made treating partners with respect a guiding principle."

The chain is expected to close about 300 stores this year.

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