Starbucks coffee may be magical in helping us stay awake, but can the company poof away the country’s big issues of racism and discrimination? Well, the coffeehouse started working toward that by dedicating a whole day to training its baristas, but this time on racial bias. They closed over 8,000 locations to begin the practice.
According to a source, the closing of the locations for a day, had Starbucks losing about $12 million dollars and becoming vulnerable to public scrutiny. So, it seems Starbucks was up for the challenge, no matter the expense.
The infamous Philadelphia Starbucks incident sparked a lot of commotion on social media, and in result paved the way for the company stepping up and standing against such racial profiling.
During the training, a film was shown by award-winning documentarian Stanley Nelson, about a narrator revealing the many ways in which public space has been regulated in the country, mostly inaccessible to black people. This video related directly back to the way Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson were arrested for trespassing in April at the Philadelphia location.
Even though the training was a one-day event, Starbucks’ first woman COO, Rosalind ‘Roz’ Brewer, revealed that it is only the first step in their “long-term journey.” The company also plans to send representatives to a Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights convening this summer.
Some critics say that Starbucks is doing it all for the symbolism, but the company knows it isn’t just a one-day challenge, realizing that there is a lot more work to be done even after the trainings. How much of a difference do you think the racial bias training day at Starbucks will make? 92% of people don’t believe the trainings will change much, while only a very tiny percent think they will make a world of difference. Read more about the story on Glamour here.
Here’s how people on the Zip app are weighing in on this all over the country!
How much of a difference do you think the racial bias training day at Starbucks will make?
Zip users in 213 cities and 40 states weighed in on this question.