While Starbucks poses as more than a retail food and drink shop, we should watch their market share and wages.
With Donald Trump as the public villain, Starbucks poses as some kind of retail superhero.
Starbucks says it will hire 10,000 refugees over the next five years, a response to President Donald Trump’s indefinite suspension of Syrian refugees and temporary travel bans that apply to six other Muslim-majority nations.
Howard Schultz, the coffee retailer’s chairman and CEO, said in a letter to employees Sunday that the hiring would apply to stores worldwide and the effort would start in the United States where the focus would be on hiring immigrants “who have served with U.S. troops as interpreters and support personnel.”
Schultz, a supporter of Hillary Clinton during the presidential run, took aim at other parts of a Trump agenda focused on immigration, repealing former President Barack Obama’s health care law and restructuring trade with Mexico. The letter said that Starbucks would help support coffee growers in Mexico, provide health insurance to eligible workers if the health care law is repealed and back an Obama-era immigration program that allows young immigrants who were brought to the country as children to apply for a two-year reprieve from deportation and a work permit.
Schultz posted a public letter that unambiguously condemned Trump and everyone who voted for him on the basis of his promises.
I write to you today with deep concern, a heavy heart and a resolute promise. Let me begin with the news that is immediately in front of us: we have all been witness to the confusion, surprise and opposition to the Executive Order that President Trump issued on Friday, effectively banning people from several predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States, including refugees fleeing wars. I can assure you that our Partner Resources team has been in direct contact with the partners who are impacted by this immigration ban, and we are doing everything possible to support and help them to navigate through this confusing period.
We are living in an unprecedented time, one in which we are witness to the conscience of our country, and the promise of the American Dream, being called into question. These uncertain times call for different measures and communication tools than we have used in the past. Kevin and I are going to accelerate our commitment to communicating with you more frequently, including leveraging new technology platforms moving forward. I am hearing the alarm you all are sounding that the civility and human rights we have all taken for granted for so long are under attack, and want to use a faster, more immediate form of communication to engage with you on matters that concern us all as partners.
The letter closes with Schultz giving us his “word” that he will treat Red States and Blue States equally. In the context of an open partisan attack which demands we accept the leftist/media narrative, his word is obviously worthless.
But his rhetoric sure is pretentious! Note my emphasis:
So, while we seek to understand what the new Administration’s policies mean for us and our business both domestically and around the world, I can assure you that we will do whatever it takes to support you, our partners, to realize your own dreams and achieve your own opportunities. We are in business to inspire and nurture the human spirit, one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time – whether that neighborhood is in a Red State or a Blue State; a Christian country or a Muslim country; a divided nation or a united nation. That will not change. You have my word on that.
No, you’re in business to turn a profit. You’re a fast food restaurant. That’s all.
I wonder, however, if Starbucks will be able to keep us with their vaunted and expensive “customer experience” while they’re meeting their commitment to hire foreigners. It will be interesting to see what happens to their wage scale and their market share over the next five years.