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(en) Britain, IWW* pickets Edinburgh Starbucks

Date Mon, 28 Aug 2006 13:15:32 +0300

IWW Informational Picket in Edinburgh -- Just a quick report on our
Informational picket at Starbucks in Edinburgh yesterday (Saturday 19th).
We (4 wobs, two supporters) chose our usual target - the High Street
branch on the top of the Royal Mile.
The area was teeming with people as it's mid-Festival.
We arrived at 11.00am and went in to speak with Baristas first, in
order to explain what we were doing and to offer solidarity. Some
Baristas were positive, some negative "We don't need a union".
Whilst a manager was informing us that we weren't allowed to do
this and none of his staff were interested anyway, a Barista came up
and asked for a bundle of leaflets for his co-workers, despite veiled
threats from the manager!

We started leafleting outside and very soon the police arrived. They
threatened one wobbly with arrest (for what, we can't figure) if they
didn't give their name and address but otherwise said we could
continue as long as we didn't obstruct the entrance or harass

So, between 11.00 and about 14.30 we held our placards, handed out
hundreds of leaflets and explained to folks why we were there and
why they should show solidarity by not drinking in Starbucks today. I
have to say the response was overall very positive and we turned
back dozens of would-be coffee drinkers! Many people, seeing our
placards, came over to get a leaflet, offer support and chat. We had
many humerous incidents, notably when a whole African- American
marching band turned back after talking to us. One of them asked if
this was legal in "England" because we "would get our butts kicked"
in the US if we tried this.

One other high point was a Barista from another Starbucks came up
and enthusiastically asked for a bundle of leaflets to distribute at his

So, we felt it was a very worthwhile action.
Thanks are due to the support we had from members of the
Edinburgh Chiapas Solidarity group and the SolFed- IWA.

from iww.org
* An antiauthoritarian anticapitalist syndicate
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