‘We regret that our practices and training led to the reprehensible outcome at our Philadelphia store…’
(Voice of America) The CEO of Starbucks arrived in Philadelphia Monday, hoping to meet with two black men who were arrested at a Starbucks last week while waiting for a friend to join them.
The case of the two men received national attention after a video of their arrest posted on Twitter Thursday went viral.
@Starbucks The police were called because these men hadn’t ordered anything. They were waiting for a friend to show up, who did as they were taken out in handcuffs for doing nothing. All the other white ppl are wondering why it’s never happened to us when we do the same thing. pic.twitter.com/0U4Pzs55Ci
— Melissa DePino (@missydepino) April 12, 2018
The video showed two black men calmly being arrested, while one white patron repeatedly questioned police officers on what the men did.
Another patron could be heard attesting that the men had not done anything and that it was unclear why the police were called.
The two men were reportedly sitting in the shop, waiting on a third person, when an employee at the store called the police.
Police released the men hours after the arrest but did not identify them publicly.
Local reports said that the manager of the store had been let go Monday, as protests in the coffee shop where the arrests occurred continued, with demonstrators holding signs and chanting slogans such as “Starbucks coffee is anti-black.”
Over the weekend, Kevin Johnson apologized for the incident and said Starbucks would investigate the matter, adjust its practices and improve training for managers so they do not act with unconscious bias.
“To our partners who proudly wear the green apron, and to customers who come to us for a sense of community every day: You can and should expect more from us. We will learn from this and be better,” he wrote.
We regret that our practices and training led to the reprehensible outcome at our Philadelphia store. We’re taking immediate action to learn from this and be better. A statement from ceo Kevin Johnson: https://t.co/kPav8bEeOX
— Starbucks Coffee (@Starbucks) April 15, 2018
Copyright 2018 Voice of America.