Racial bias at Starbucks

Starbucks stores close around the nation due to incident


Eight thousand Starbucks Stores will close on May 29 for racial bias training. This is due to an incident that occurred on April 12, concerning employees and prejudicial treatment. Photo from Creative Commons

Story by Emma Anderson, staff writer

The alarm buzzes as she wakes up to get ready for a normal day of work. She puts on her green apron equipped with straws and walks in the door. However, she finds that it is closed for the day. She walks in and puts down her belongings, preparing for a long day of training.

Junior Kearstan Williams, a local Starbucks employee, will not have work on May 29 but instead will complete “racial bias training.” This training will take place when approximately 8,000 Starbucks stores close after two African-American men walked into their local Starbucks in Philadelphia for a real estate meeting. They were arrested just two minutes later after arriving for no reason at all.

“It was completely inappropriate,” Starbucks CEO, Kevin Johnson said. ”Starbucks was built as a company the creates a warm, welcoming environment for customers. That didn’t happen in this case.”

It’s horrible to think that even today racial profiling is still happening.”

— Kearstan Williams

Williams agrees with Johnson in the fact that racial bias is completely wrong.

“I think it is unfair to racially profile,” Williams said. “It’s horrible to think that even today racial profiling is still happening.”

Williams believes that the training will help Starbucks employees prevent these incidents of discrimination.

”I think it is good that they are trying to educate employees.” Williams said. ”I don’t think that it is necessarily a problem here because we love our customers and everybody I know that works at Starbucks is very loving and friendly. [However], I think it is good idea to get awareness of [racism].”