This week, the Center for Union Facts released new research exposing the hypocritical investments and radical leadership of Workers United, the group behind the high-profile labor campaign to organize Starbucks workers nationwide.
CUF’s research report is part of a new education campaign–launched this week to educate workers and call out Workers United as a “progressive poser” who owes union members, liberal supporters, and the general public some answers.
Workers United has organized baristas across the country through an appeal to their progressive values. But the union has an alter ego: Workers United is the largest shareholder of Amalgamated Bank, a “socially responsible” institution which reports nine-figure investments to the SEC in industries—including fossil fuels, big tobacco, gun manufacturing, and more—which the union and bank publicly claim to oppose.
This includes more than $700 million reported in fossil fuel-based companies, while maintaining that “none” of the bank’s money funds the “oil and gas or coal industries.” There’s also another reported $10 million in private prison and crowd control companies—including a tear gas manufacturer—despite claiming to be “very concerned” about the growth of the private prison industry. These private prison companies are the same groups that have been used to detain undocumented immigrants at the border and have been accused of compliance in former President Trump’s family separation policy. And another nearly $70 million in tobacco and gun/ammunition companies.
The report also highlights the radical ideologies of Jaz Brisack, the high-profile leader of Starbucks Workers United who is on the record defending a convicted Palestinian terrorist and promoting other disturbing anti-Israel views.
The hypocrisy of Workers United is staggering. The progressive workers with whom Workers United claims to align deserve an explanation.