Starbucks has long described itself as a community hub. The “third place between work and home” is where Wi-Fi is great and you can chat with your friends or neighbors over a latte. However, this picture is crumbling in areas where staff and guest safety appears to be a growing problem. A big enough problem, in fact, that the chain is forced to resort to drastic measures in many cafes.
Starbucks announced on July 11 that it was permanently closing the doors of 16 metropolitan locations as crime spiraled out of control. Six of these locations are in her hometown of Seattle.
Other permanent closures include six stores in the Los Angeles area, two in Portland, Oregon, and one each in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Washington, DC, according to the The Wall Street Journal. Stores will close at the end of the month.
a Starbucks spokesperson He said that incidents of drug use, theft, and assault were rampant in these cafes. The decision to close them was based on the volume of crime complaints being registered by employees and the chain’s failed attempts to reduce these rates with various measures.
Dennis Nielsen and Debbie Stroud, Starbucks’ senior vice president of US operations, said in a note to employees that the shutdowns are a response to issues including “personal safety, racism, lack of access to health care, a growing mental health crisis, growing drug use and more” that have plagued stores. , according to The Seattle Times.
In June, it was The coffee shop chain said it is considering changing its open bathroom for everyone The policy is another measure intended to reduce safety problems at its sites. The company passed a more comprehensive policy in 2018, after the arrest of two customers at a Philadelphia store who were trying to use the bathroom without making a purchase caused a public backlash. But CEO Howard Schultz said the company doesn’t know if it can keep its bathrooms open due to barista safety. “We have to strengthen our stores and provide safety for our people,” he said.
The current safety crisis, the growing number of syndicate stores, and The latest chicken sandwich disaster They put the company’s image in turmoil. But it looks like Starbucks is back on the drawing board and looking for a solution.
According to Schultz’ recent statements, major changes are looming as the series looks to “reinvent” itself. While details are few, more will be revealed in the coming weeks.
“Today, we find ourselves in a position where we must modernize and transform the Starbucks experience in our stores and re-create a convenient, welcoming, and safe environment where we honor one another with dignity, respect and kindness,” Schultz said in a July 12 letter seen business restaurant. “We need to reinvent Starbucks for the future.”
Amber Lake is a writer for Eat This, Not That! He received a degree in journalism from the United Nations Foundation in Jacksonville, Florida. Read more