Starbucks is shutting down 16 store locations in a number of Democrat-run cities across America, citing safety concerns and an increase in crime.
And while social media users were quick to suggest that when a company goes woke they go broke, keep in mind that Starbucks has well over 15,000 stores in the U.S.
Store managers have reportedly complained about rampant drug use, assaults and theft, with Starbucks giving them discretion to deny access to the restrooms inside the stores, according to the Seattle Times. Corporate policy requires stores to keep restrooms open to the public.
Starbucks is closing several stores in the Democrat-run city of Seattle over “safety concerns” consisting of:
“Crime, assaults, thefts, [and] drug use.” pic.twitter.com/gEVmBYUzQA
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) July 12, 2022
Starbucks interim CEO Howard Schultz said the company was rethinking its “open bathroom” policy, according to the New York Post.
The company infamously allowed open use of store bathrooms after police arrested two black men in Philadelphia in May 2018 when a Starbucks manager accused them of trespassing after denying them from using the bathroom.
The locations being shuttered include six Starbucks in the company’s hometown of Seattle, six in the Los Angeles area, two in Portland, Ore., and one each in Philadelphia and Washington, DC. The stores will close by July 31.
Where Starbucks is closing business due to crime:
6 stores in Los Angeles
6 stores in Seattle
2 stores in Portland
1 store in Washington, D.C.
1 store in Philadelphia
These locations will close by the end of the month, per the WSJ https://t.co/iPeYzbvSCS
— Jon Michael Raasch (@JMRaasch) July 12, 2022
Starbucks Senior Vice Presidents of U.S. Operations Debbie Stroud and Denise Nelson explained in a message to employees that the concern for safety will result in the company “modifying operations, closing a restroom, or even closing a store permanently, where safety in the third place is no longer possible.”
“We want you to know that creating a safe, welcoming, and kind third place is our top priority,” the executives said in the message shared on the company’s website. “Because simply put, we cannot serve as partners if we don’t first feel safe at work. The question on our minds is: How do we continue to show up for our communities while protecting our partners?”
One social media user had his own ideas: “Get woke, go broke. The @Starbucks edition. After the pressure by a fickle woke mob over bathroom accessibility four years ago, Starbucks sees an increase of drug use and violence. Now forced to shut down locations because they are untenable.”
Get woke, go broke. The @Starbucks edition. After the pressure by a fickle woke mob over bathroom accessibility four years ago, Starbucks sees an increase of drug use and violence. Now forced to shut down locations because they are untenable. #getwokegobroke #Starbucks pic.twitter.com/dz9R86ujtb
— Rex Locum (Skeptical/Suspicious) (@LocumRex) July 12, 2022
Starbucks is closing six stores in the Seattle area because of crime and safety concerns, although Mari Cosgrove, a Starbucks barista and union member who learned of the closings at a mandatory meeting on Monday, took issue with the claim.
“I 100 percent cannot buy the safety issues as the excuse,” Cosgrove told KOMO.
“I was honestly insulted they would say this about worker concerns,” Cosgrove said, “[To] have workers say, ‘No we’re not concerned actually’ and then be told, ‘No you are concerned that’s why we’re closing, end of discussion.’”
Union members suggested that the closures are linked to union organizing — at least two of the six stores closing are unionized, according to KOMO. Starbucks denied the claim, telling the affiliate the 16 stores closing nationwide include union and non-union stores.
The denial did not stop the narrative from circulating, as seen in the following tweets that showcase the level of vitriol Starbucks is up against:
wow @KOMO4 with nothing but a throwaway mention about two of the Seattle Starbucks store closures being at unionized locations, not even a hint of a suggestion that this action could be union busting – just pushing the Starbucks narrative that these closures are due to “crime”
— sunny #FreeAbortionsOnDemand (@sunnyorganizes) July 12, 2022
It’s been a month since the College Ave closure and I find out today that more union stores are closing in Seattle and Portland. OUTSPOKEN pro-union stores. Starbucks is targeting the partners and stores that scare them the most. But we aren’t going to back down so easily.
— Evan Sunshine (@evanlsunshine) July 12, 2022
@geraldorenata RE: Starbucks closures: Looks and smells like union-busting with a dash of racism and elitism thrown in for good measure. I don’t see them closing any of their three stores in downtown Mercer Island or Madison Park.
— John Livingston (@electroscribe) July 12, 2022
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