Around 8000 Starbucks stores, owned by the company will be closed across different locations in the US on Tuesday to give a compulsory anti-bias training to more than 1,75,000 workers. However, 7000 licensed joints run by airports, departmental stores and hotels will be open. Stores taking part in training will be shut in local time from 2 to 3 pm.
This was announced by Starbucks immediately after an incident involving two black men came into highlight at a Philadelphia store in the month of April. The men were taken into custody for trespassing after the store operator called the cops as the men were just sitting without requesting any order. On investigation, it was found that they were just biding time for a friend to arrive. This episode invoked an uproar which was followed by a quick apology from Kevin Johnson, CEO.
This is where the training comes into action. Employees will be divided into small sections across different places. They will be virtually guided by their CEO and Chairman along with activist Common. The curriculum has been set by leading legal and education advisors. A starting kit for training will be made available at each store. The focal point for training will be to understand the racial bias and discrimination in open places all over the US.
Starbucks has also changed its policies regarding the use of restrooms by the public without placing an order at the discretion of its employees. They are also requesting the customers to behave appropriately. The employees have been given specific behavioral guidelines to judge the customers but have been instructed to take help from fellow workers before stepping in.
More such training is expected to follow in the days ahead proving the company’s seriousness regarding the matter. They have plans to share the training material to the public and are also hopeful that other businesses will also follow suit.