Starbucks' training shutdown could cost it just US$16.7M


Starbucks, scrambling to restore trust after the arrest of two black patrons at a cafe in Philadelphia, announced Tuesday that it's going to close more than half its stores in the USA next month for an afternoon of bias training.

Listen to the call and radio dispatches here: The arrests last week sparked protests and calls for a boycott on social media.

A second video has appeared on Twitter showing a black man being apparently discriminated against by the coffee shop staff. When the men explained their situation and questioned why they were not permitted to wait on their friend, the manager phoned the police who arrived and arrested the men.

"I can tell you candidly these officers did a service they were called to do", he said, adding that the officers were told the men refused to leave after management at the Starbucks told them to vacate.

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April 12, two Black men entered the Starbucks location in Philadelphia's Rittenhouse Square neighborhood.

According to a recording of 911 tapes released this week, officers responded to a police radio report of a "disturbance" by a "group of males" at the Starbucks.

The manager responsible for calling the police on the two African-American men has since stepped down from her job and is no longer employed by Starbucks.

Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson apologized in person to the two men. "Commissioner Ross has said the officers did 'absolutely nothing wrong.' POWER and community leaders are gathering to demonstrate that racial discrimination is intolerable and that Philadelphia police must end racial bias and complicity with white supremacy". "Closing our stores [on May 29] for racial bias training is just one step in a journey that requires dedication from every level of our company and partnerships in our local communities", he said. In 2015, then-CEO Howard Schultz shrugged off the "Race Together" fiasco as a well-intentioned mistake and pressed on with his public efforts to engage in the debate over race in America. She accused of Schultz and the corporation is "cowering" to liberal pressure. "They are breaking a promise". "I was interested in Starbucks' stated commitment to recognizing the real issues of racial discrimination and being serious about trying to tackle it, and also trying to play a leadership role that others can follow", Ifill tells NPR. The statement further said that some 8,000 Starbucks stores will halt operation for the goal on Tuesday, May 29.

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"You are actually not allowed to be in here anymore", she said to Ward.

Starbucks has set its own high bar. The employees involved in the allegation were eventually fired, and Conley is planning to a file a lawsuit. Most recently, Cornel West called out Ta-Nehisi Coates for being the "neoliberal face of the black freedom struggle".

"He's doing something but I don't think it's enough", added Lewis. They include former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, Jonathan Greenblatt of the Anti-Defamation League, the president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, and several others.

The company said the educational materials would eventually be shared with its licensed stores.

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When The Triton asked a spokesperson from Starbucks corporate office as to why some stores will remain open, the spokesperson explained that it may be due to the fact that UCSD's Starbucks is a university-affiliated store, but Starbucks could also neither confirm nor deny whether UCSD Starbucks employees will still receive the racial bias training.