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The Starbucks Union Wave in New York Keeps Gaining Steam

Plus, 15-minute grocery apps are opening their fulfillment centers to the public — and more intel

People hold signs while protesting in front of a Starbucks store on April 14, 2022 in New York City.
People protesting Starbucks’ anti-unionization efforts in NYC.
Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images
Erika Adams is the editor of Eater Boston.

The unionization wave at coffee giant Starbucks is continuing to gain steam in New York. Staffers at one of Starbucks’ fancy Reserve stores in Williamsburg, plus an Astoria outpost, a shop in Long Island, and an upstate location in Rockland County, have filed petitions to hold union elections at their respective stores, Commercial Observer reports. The Astoria store will begin its election process in the first week of May, according to the publication. It is unclear when the other three shops will begin their elections.

Despite Starbucks management’s strong opposition to unionization efforts, momentum keeps building: As of April 13, 16 Starbucks stores across the U.S. have voted to unionize, and more than 150 stores are in the process of holding elections. On April 1, the three-story Reserve shop in Chelsea became the first Starbucks location in NYC to unionize.

15-minute grocery delivery services are now letting people inside their stores

One of the many gripes that city residents and local legislators have raised against NYC’s plethora of 15-minute grocery delivery apps have been their fulfillment centers: The companies take over empty storefronts, cover the windows, and turn the spaces into warehouses that may violate local zoning laws, according to the New York Post. But that appears to be changing. Grocery delivery apps including Getir, Gopuff, and Gorillas are now welcoming walk-in customers and advertising in-store pickups, the Post reports, seemingly in an effort to smooth things over with regulators and residents.

The East Village lost two neighborhood veterans this past weekend

Japanese bakery Panya — the last of a longstanding trio of Japanese businesses along Stuyvesant Street owned by Tony Yoshida — closed its doors on Saturday night, EVGrieve reports. The following day, East Village Southern restaurant Root & Bone held its last service after nine years at 200 East Third Street, near Avenue B, according to a representative for the restaurant.

Philanthropists awarded for keeping iconic gay bar Stonewall Inn afloat during the pandemic

NYC’s LGBT Community Center (also known as “The Center”) recognized philanthropists Tim Gill and Scott Miller this past weekend with an award for their efforts to support the Stonewall Inn — a historic Greenwich Village bar known as an early birthplace for gay and trans rights in America — during the pandemic. AMNewYork reports that Gill and Miller pledged $250,000 in June 2020 to keep the Stonewall Inn’s doors open, plus an extra $50,000 for Stonewall Day, a fundraising event that supports nonprofits including Trans Lifeline, the TransLatin@ Coalition, Brave Space Alliance, and The Ally Coalition.