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Updated 16:50 ET
Starbucks closes thousands of stores in the US on the afternoon of May 29 to "spread racial prejudice aimed at preventing discrimination in our stores," the company said a statement.
The coffee shop chain has been criticized and protested after two black men were arrested last week at a Starbucks in Philadelphia, where they were quietly waiting to meet someone. Starbucks employees called 911 after one of the men who had not bought anything asked to use the bathroom, and then stayed in business.
Other customers took the arrest and protested that the men had not done anything wrong. They pointed out that white customers were allowed to sit without having to buy anything without being tied up.
Starbucks has apologized for the incident, CEO Kevin Johnson said he had a "goal to do everything we can to get things done and "promised to make necessary changes to our practices that would help ensure that such an event never happens again."
Johnson met the two men on Monday
"I spent the last few days in Philadelphia, with my leadership team listening to the community and learning what we did wrong and what steps we need to take to get it to fix, "said Johnson in the company statement on Tuesday. "While this is not limited to Starbucks, we want to be part of the solution. Closing our business for racial prejudice is just one step in the path that requires commitment at all levels of our business and partnerships in our local communities."  Howard Schultz, Executive Chairman and former CEO of Starbucks, led the company's explosive growth, adding, "The company's founding values are based on humanity and inclusion, and we will learn from our mistakes and affirm our commitment to creating a safe and inviting environment for every customer. "
Gene Demby, a native Philadelphia native who hosts the Code Switches podcast, explains that" out-of-place police work "when" police collaborate with people who do not look like they belong there "is" usually only racist profiling masked as spatial profiling. "[1 9659009] He said it's hard to tell exactly where the racial prejudice lies with this detention – by an employee, Starbucks, or the police.
"I actually called Phillip Atiba Goff, president of the Center for Policing Equity," says Gene. "And he said that it is really hard to separate police bias from public bias because black men are perceived as threats so far, and that perception is considered reasonable by the police … If you think that a black person is violent or dangerous It is out of place, he says, that your bias will have all the structural support, the police will renounce your suspicion.
"And there are no consequences for anyone's prejudices here … not the Starbucks employee, not the police. The only consequences are the two men who are arrested and spend hours behind bars. "
Gene notes that it's not clear if Facebook has a consistent policy regarding the use of bathrooms by people who have not bought anything." The Starbucks Official policy, whether it exists or not, is unimportant for this conversation in many ways, "he says. And because these questions become issues of individual discretion, bias can creep in here.  Protesting Rally Outside Philadelphia Starbucks Following the Capture of 2 Black Men “/>