Howard Schultz will testify | CNN Business


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Starbucks interim CEO Howard Schultz will testify before a Senate Judiciary Committee on March 29 about the company’s labor practices, a reversal by Schultz earlier refusal.

“I am pleased to announce that Howard Schultz, the CEO and founder of Starbucks, has finally agreed to testify before the Senate HELP Committee,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vt) said in a statement Tuesday. Sanders is chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP), which planned to vote on whether to subpoena Schultz to testify Wednesday.

Under Schultz’s leadership, the coffee company is battling a growing wave of unionization. Since rejoining the company as interim CEO in April last year, and even before that, Schultz has said repeatedly that he doesn’t think Starbucks employees should join a union.

“I look forward to hearing from Mr. Schultz when he plans to end his illegal anti-union activities and sign fair first contracts with the unions,” Sanders said.

Schultz rejected Sanders’ request to testify before the committee in February, noting that Schultz will hand over CEO duties to new CEO Laxman Narasimhan in April. At the time, Starbucks said it would send its Chief Public Affairs Officer and Executive Vice President, AJ Jones II, instead.

But “after constructive discussions with committee staff, we have agreed that Howard Schultz, the interim chief executive, will testify on behalf of Starbucks,” Starbucks chief attorney Zabrina Jenkins said in a letter to Sanders and the rest of the committee on Tuesday. . was provided to CNN by Starbucks.

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