The ongoing unionizing battles within the Starbucks system continues to escalate on both fronts as the Workers United union has filed more complaints with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). In addition, the company has advised employees in two more stores – one in Seattle and the other in Kansas City, both of which have filed for a union representation election – that the stores will be closing permanently. Including the two newly announced store closings, 18 of the 19 stores targeted to close have been organizing for unionization. Furthermore, the NLRB office in Seattle has filed a complaint against Starbucks alleging the company violated labor law earlier this summer by offering raises and benefits – including increased training, career development opportunities, expanded tipping and looser dress code policies – only to employees in non-union stores. Interim CEO Howard Schultz explained at the time that the company couldn’t unilaterally make any changes in union stores because U.S. labor laws require unionized stores to negotiate their own contracts. Since the unionizing efforts within the Starbucks system began in Buffalo New York last year, as many as 200 stores have voted to unionize.