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JuiceLand workers push for more after management raises pay

A small group of JuiceLand employees organized a strike, which led to temporary closures and reduced hours at a handful of the company's 35 locations. (Austonia staff)

After a strike that left six JuiceLand locations temporarily closed, company leadership announced a series of changes, including an hourly wage increase. But a group of organized workers is calling for the strike to continue and urging customers to boycott the Austin-based business.

The organized workers, who have posted updates on Instagram and Twitter, said a Monday meeting with company leadership went well until their request to make a joint statement was not met.

"With the trust established broken, we saw no reason to halt the strikes anymore," the group wrote in posts on Wednesday morning. "We will work together only if we are included in the decisions supposed to be made together."

The workers initially demanded wage increases, better working conditions and pay transparency on Friday. JuiceLand leadership responded with a guaranteed tipped wage increase on Saturday that brought tipped employees up to $15 an hour and non-tipped employees up to $17 an hour, up from the previous $12.50 starting rate. Around 90% of the company's more than 500 employees are paid by the hour, a company spokesperson told Austonia.

The company announced additional commitments in a Wednesday press release, including to:

  • Take every allegation of racism, sexism or other form of discrimination seriously
  • Partner with an independent third party to provide a help line for anonymous reporting of concerns
  • Increase the frequency of employee-wide surveys to inform leadership of concerns
"Input from our employees at every level is essential to our growth and evolution as a company," JuiceLand founder and owner Matt Shook said in a statement.

The company moved quickly to put these measures in place, several of which were in the works prior to the pandemic but delayed as a result of it, according to the statement.

The JuiceLand spokesperson said a small group of nine employees was behind the Instagram account that originally raised these concerns. In a Tuesday Instagram post, the group said roughly 30 people attended a recent strike outside the company headquarters and that it was founded by "the Black and brown workers of JuiceLand."

The group has also organized a GoFundMe, which has raised $11,307 toward a $15,000 goal in the last three years. The funds will be distributed to striking employees.


Tito's releases (not so?) ugly sweater line for the holidays, profits to charity

Tito's Handmade Vodka

Show your love for Tito's and for the community this year with a wide selection of not that ugly, uglyish, ugly, uglier, and ugliest holiday sweaters.

There's lots choose from, and plenty of accessories like scarves and socks, plus gear for your dog, too.

All of the items can be purchased online or at the Love, Tito’s Retail Store in Austin, TX. 100% of all net proceeds from online or in-store purchases go to one of the nonprofits we’ve teamed up with.

Click here to see the entire collection in the Tito's store.

Mac and Cheese Fest and Free Art Exhibit
Waterloo Greenway, Good Vibrations Installation

🗓 All weekend

🎨 Creek Show Art Exhibit

Check out this highly anticipated art exhibition with illuminated art along Waller Creek. Tickets are free and the event includes food vendors, dazzling lights, live music, and hands-on activities

All weekend 6 p.m - 10 p.m | 📍Waterloo Park

✨ Mozart's Light Show

This iconic holiday tradition lights up for the first time this holiday season starting this weekend! Reserve your spot for an enchanting light and sound performance, delicious hot cocoa, sweet treats, and some overall fun with your friends or family. The show runs till January 6th.

6 p.m and 9 p.m | 📍Mozart's Coffee Roasters - 3825 Lake Austin Blvd, Austin, TX 78703

🗓 Saturday

🥊 Kickboxing in the Park

This fitness event is free and open to the public. Get your morning started right with a "Fitness in the park" class for kickboxing! The class will be led by certified instructors and is a great way to get a cardio workout in while also honing your self-defense skills.

10 a.m - 11 a.m | 📍 Metz Park

🛍 The Front Market

Support local LBGTQ+ and female artists at this outdoor market with over 150 vendors. Get your holiday shopping out of the way at this event, with vendors for food trucks, handmade goods, raffles, hands on workshops and activities, and more.

11 a.m - 5 p.m | 📍Ani's Day and Night - 7107 E Riverside Drive, Austin, TX 78741

🗓 Sunday

🧀 Mac and Cheese Fest

Did someone say cheese?! If you're like me and always willing to get your hands on a bowl of mac and cheese, then this event is for you. Check out the Mac and Cheese festival happening this weekend to decide which vendor has. the best mac and cheese for yourself, and enjoy the bar with creative cocktails while you're at it. Tickets start at $45.

11 a.m - 3 p.m | 📍Lantana Place - 7415 Southwest Parkway