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New Video Shows Another Starbucks Denying Bathroom Access to a Black Man
by cjsbmom
April 18 at 6:53 AM


 By 

After protests in Philadelphia, Starbucks now has trouble elsewhere. A new video making the rounds on Twitter shows a black customer in the Los Angeles area being denied access to the bathroom. The clip was first tweeted by civil-rights activist and former Young Turkscommentator Shaun King. It was shot inside a Torrance store by a man named Brandon Ward. Ward says he hadn’t purchased anything yet, so the manager refused to give him the bathroom code. But in his video, a white male who hadn’t purchased anything either walks out of the bathroom, and tells Ward he’d simply “asked for the code.”

The timing of the video is unclear, but after King’s tweet, it’s now been viewed 1.5 million times, and is one of several examples surfacing in the last few days of the ways black customers feel Starbucks has discriminated against them.

Replies

  • cjsbmom
    by cjsbmom
    April 18 at 6:53 AM

    Continued

    Since Saturday, Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson has promised meetings with community leaders and police, sitdowns with customers, and more training for baristas and store managers, while also proposing “a dialogue” with the two arrested men in order to “show some compassion and empathy” for their ordeal. CNN says this morningthat this meeting actually already occurred (quietly sometime yesterday, presumably), though Starbucks wouldn’t elaborate on the details.

    In the meantime, the #BoycottStarbucks movement isn’t losing steam. Protesters shut the Philly café down yesterday after chanting “Starbucks coffee is anti-black!” and staging a sit-in. By late morning, the location had accumulated thousands of one-star Yelp reviews, assuring it will remain in “active cleanup” for the near future. The company did announce yesterday that it’s officially parted ways with the Philadelphia store manager who called 911, in what a rep referred to as a “mutual” decision.


  • Clairwil
    April 18 at 7:09 PM

    I'm torn on this.

    If a company can't afford to provide free toilet services to everyone passerby (and, in some areas, if they did so their customers would have really long waits, or they'd have to buy extra toilets), then they do need to attempt to guess at who is or is not a customer.   Because if it became known that their policy was "presume everyone who enters is a customer", it would get abused.   In some areas, rather badly abused.

    Should they go purely on the colour of someone's skin?   Even if 90% of colour X in that area are rich enough to be customers, while only 10% of colour Y who enter the store are actually customers?   No, they shouldn't.

    Should they go on someone's apparent wealth or honesty?

    What if, in that area, apparent wealth and honesty are correlated with skin colour, so that even if they are ignoring skin colour in their decisions and going purely on the person's wealth, the result will still be a disproportionate number of colour X being allowed compared to colour Y ?   Should, in that case, they ignore the cues of how expensive the person's clothes etc are, purely in order to avoid appearing to do something there were not actually doing?


    (Disclaimer : the above is about the abstract problem.   It may well turn out that, in this case, they were indeed actually discriminating against colour, not just coming over that way.)

  • PinkButterfly66
    April 18 at 7:19 PM

    I have pulled into Starbucks many, many, many times while on the road to pee without buying anything.  Of course I live in the South and the bathrooms aren't locked.

    Quoting Clairwil:

    I'm torn on this.

    If a company can't afford to provide free toilet services to everyone passerby (and, in some areas, if they did so their customers would have really long waits, or they'd have to buy extra toilets), then they do need to attempt to guess at who is or is not a customer.   Because if it became known that their policy was "presume everyone who enters is a customer", it would get abused.   In some areas, rather badly abused.

    Should they go purely on the colour of someone's skin?   Even if 90% of colour X in that area are rich enough to be customers, while only 10% of colour Y who enter the store are actually customers?   No, they shouldn't.

    Should they go on someone's apparent wealth or honesty?

    What if, in that area, apparent wealth and honesty are correlated with skin colour, so that even if they are ignoring skin colour in their decisions and going purely on the person's wealth, the result will still be a disproportionate number of colour X being allowed compared to colour Y ?   Should, in that case, they ignore the cues of how expensive the person's clothes etc are, purely in order to avoid appearing to do something there were not actually doing?


    (Disclaimer : the above is about the abstract problem.   It may well turn out that, in this case, they were indeed actually discriminating against colour, not just coming over that way.)


  • AliasKat
    April 18 at 7:20 PM

    It's not just coming over that way; they are indeed actually discriminating against color.

    How many more POC and white people as eye witness will it take to believe discrimination is covert and systemic. (that's rhetorical)

    Quoting Clairwil:

    I'm torn on this.

    If a company can't afford to provide free toilet services to everyone passerby (and, in some areas, if they did so their customers would have really long waits, or they'd have to buy extra toilets), then they do need to attempt to guess at who is or is not a customer.   Because if it became known that their policy was "presume everyone who enters is a customer", it would get abused.   In some areas, rather badly abused.

    Should they go purely on the colour of someone's skin?   Even if 90% of colour X in that area are rich enough to be customers, while only 10% of colour Y who enter the store are actually customers?   No, they shouldn't.

    Should they go on someone's apparent wealth or honesty?

    What if, in that area, apparent wealth and honesty are correlated with skin colour, so that even if they are ignoring skin colour in their decisions and going purely on the person's wealth, the result will still be a disproportionate number of colour X being allowed compared to colour Y ?   Should, in that case, they ignore the cues of how expensive the person's clothes etc are, purely in order to avoid appearing to do something there were not actually doing?


    (Disclaimer : the above is about the abstract problem.   It may well turn out that, in this case, they were indeed actually discriminating against colour, not just coming over that way.)


  • Lady_Facetious
    April 18 at 7:47 PM
    I have been in many Starbucks to use the bathroom without buying anything and no one (Starbucks employees) ever says shit to me about needing to buy something. I've been in multiple Starbucks where homeless people use the bathroom without buying anything and only once did anyone (Starbucks employees), and that was only because the guy they said something to would take forever in the bathroom and it was a longstanding problem, they gave him multiple warnings and chances.
  • UpSheRises
    April 18 at 7:52 PM
    I don’t care about the denying of bathroom use. The thing that was remarkable about the other video was the men being arrested like criminals.

    Asshole fast food managers are a dime a dozen.
  • Clairwil
    April 19 at 1:15 AM


    Quoting AliasKat:

    How many more POC and white people as eye witness will it take to believe discrimination is covert and systemic. (that's rhetorical)

    Answering that anyway - an awful lot, if you mean to the satisfaction of scientists.

    What it needs is a pair of under cover journalists, with different skin colours but everything else matching, each visiting the same stores on different days.    Depending on how strong the statistical effect is, it might take as few as 10 stores to produce pretty damn conclusive proof.

  • turtle68
    April 19 at 2:37 AM

    Im impressed no one is commenting on the video of the black guy being denied bathroom privileges and the white guy being allowed to use the bathroom.

    He went back to the horses mouth and asked WHY?  Why he wasnt allowed and the manager just kept stating that she wanted him out...not denying what was going on...just trying to shut him down.  What a fucking bitch.  I honestly think they should be concentrating on HER starbucks...seemingly its HER private business.

    I have no problem with the buy something rule.  You buy and you will get the code.  Anything less than that is DISCRIMINATION.

  • D-Town
    by D-Town
    April 19 at 4:16 AM

    Is this a regional thing? I've never been in a Starbucks or other restaurant where the bathrooms are locked. I walk in, use the bathroom and then go order. With the exception of gas stations, I've never had to ask for a key or a code. 

  • subzero
    by subzero
    April 19 at 6:20 AM

    you don't need a key or a code in NZ. Crazy

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