Notwithstanding that over 170 Starbucks locations have already formally voted to unionize, the company appears to be pushing back in a “watch out what you ask for, you might get it” kind of way. A major complaint of the workers in many of the stores around the Starbucks footprint have centered around safety issues and highlighted concerns for their physical safety – from violence as well as workplace accidents – as major contributing factors behind their desire to unionize. In response to their concerns, interim CEO Howard Schultz stated he takes their concerns seriously and early this week announced a reinvention plan incorporating changes within five key pillars, one of which is improving employee welfare. In that vein, just a few days later, it was announced that the company would be permanently closing 16 stores because of safety concerns. A number of those stores have already voted to unionize, while others have petitions pending for union representation elections with the NLRB.