For the last two weeks students have manned an ‘anti-Starbucks’ stall outside the Hallward Library where the Starbucks coffee is being served (at nearly double its pre-Starbucks price). The movement against the corporatisation of our educational facilities has been swift; nearly 700 people have joined the Facebook group against Starbucks (34 have joined a Starbucks supporting group), hundreds of people have signed the petition and loads of cups of tea and coffee have been sold to students who don’t want to pay £1.45 for a coffee. All proceeds from the stall are going to the Crocus Café.
Why does Starbucks upset us so much?
Firstly (and possibly most significantly) the opening of the Starbucks has upset so many because of the lack of consultation and the huge increase in price overnight. Students want cheap, good quality coffee and they want to have a say.
Starbucks have an appalling list of environmental and social offences that they have committed over the years: Only 6% of Starbucks’ coffee is fairtrade (Coffee growers receive little more than 0.50p for a pound of coffee, which is then sold for £80.). Starbucks have a terrible workers rights record and has been recorded as sacking workers for unionising and not allowing their American barrista’s full healthcare or holiday benefits.
Finally Starbucks is an ugly, aggressive and irresponsible corporation. They bring a soulless and bland brand to every place on earth that they think they will make money, they break local business and shatter community meeting places and can only be stopped by communities (like our student one) standing up to they and telling them to ‘buck off’.
The students of Nottingham University do not want a company on their campus who have no scruples with opening up in Guantanamo Bay!
A meeting with the head of Estates at the University has confirmed that we are in a trial period and with another planned outlet on the Jubilee campus the time has come for us to make our voices heard and make sure Starbucks fail their trial.
Students plan to remain outside the library daily for as long as it takes.
To be continued…
For more information check out http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=5375004252
And students JOIN THE GROUP.