Following protests and widespread calls for a boycott in the days after a store manager in Philadelphia had a pair of Black men arrested, Starbucks announced yesterday (April 17) that it will close 8,000 company-owned locations in May to provide anti-bias training for employees.
On 5/29, we’ll close US company-owned stores to conduct racial-bias training to address implicit bias & prevent discrimination. We’re taking a hard look at who we are as a company. We’re ashamed & recognize that racial bias is a problem we must address. https://t.co/xIYc75BJPj— Starbucks Coffee (@Starbucks) April 17, 2018
It wasn’t long before patrons, civil rights leaders and writers took to social media to discuss the move.
if Starbucks has figured out an impactful way to educate ppl on racial bias in a single afternoon I hope they share their notes with the police https://t.co/8X8YGacgxh— @PiaGlenn (@PiaGlenn) April 17, 2018
Good first step @Starbucks! But must do MORE! Compensate the 2 Black men. Announce national & uniform policy on waiting. Establish training & job placement program 4 Blacks in local community. Constitute Fund for BLM & groups which oppose police brutality. Support Black licensees https://t.co/uontiz3zYn— Barbara Arnwine (@barbs73) April 18, 2018
Racial bias training at Starbucks: pic.twitter.com/C8ZPT7qg9U— Philip Lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) April 17, 2018
What happened at that Philly Starbucks could have happened at any public space here in America. Starbucks doesn’t have a problem, America does.— thefieldnegro (@fieldnegro) April 18, 2018
“Anti-Blackness is currency. It’s not just about Starbucks, it’s about the racist violence woven into the city.” — @FeministaJones speaking on (and AT) yesterday’s #BoycottStarbucks protest in Philadelphia— #Halfric??nAmerican (@lenubienne) April 18, 2018
Despite the news that @Starbucks will close all of its company-owned stores on the afternoon of May 29 for racial-bias education day, many black and brown people are seeking alternatives to Starbucks. https://t.co/NCRopcfJVS— Black Enterprise (@blackenterprise) April 18, 2018