Opinion The Starbucks Arrests and the Toll of Routine Bias

07:30  17 april  2018
07:30  17 april  2018 Source:   nymag.com

Police chief: Officers did nothing wrong in Starbucks arrest

  Police chief: Officers did nothing wrong in Starbucks arrest Philadelphia's police commissioner is defending his officers' decision to arrest two black men at a Starbucks that prompted accusations of racism and an apology from the company. Videos posted online show officers handcuffing the men Thursday. Commissioner Richard Ross says Starbucks employees called police to say the men were trespassing. He says they came in to use the restroom but were denied because they hadn't bought anything. Ross says police asked the men to leave three times.Videos posted online show officers handcuffing the men in the downtown establishment on Thursday. A white man in the video is heard saying he was meeting with the men and calls the arrest "ridiculous.

Protesters demonstrate outside the Center City Starbucks where two black men were arrested on Thursday. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images. Over the weekend, a viral video showing the unwarranted arrests of two black men at a Philadelphia Starbucks led to protests and calls for a nationwide

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a group of people walking down the street: Philadelphia Police Arrest Of Two Black Men In Starbucks, Prompts Apology From Company's CEO © Mark Makela/Getty Images Philadelphia Police Arrest Of Two Black Men In Starbucks, Prompts Apology From Company's CEO

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

Over the weekend, a viral video showing the unwarranted arrests of two black men at a Philadelphia Starbucks led to protests and calls for a nationwide boycott of Starbucks. The outrage earned nationwide media coverage, Twitter hashtags, and responses from Starbucks’ CEO and both Philadelphia’s mayor and police commissioner. Investigations into the incident are underway, as are the promises of policy reviews and policy changes that inevitably accompany such scandals.

Protesters pack into Philadelphia Starbucks after controversial arrest, chant store is 'anti-black'

  Protesters pack into Philadelphia Starbucks after controversial arrest, chant store is 'anti-black' Protesters on Monday packed a Philadelphia Starbucks – the site where two black men were arrested after store employees called police to say they were trespassing, sparking a days-long controversy. More than two dozen protesters crowded the store and chanted “Starbucks coffee is anti-black.”“This is what systemic white supremacy looks like," one protester said into a microphone.A Starbucks regional manager told FOX29 Philadelphia the protesters could remain in the store as long as the demonstrations remained peaceful. © FoxNews.

4:52 a.m. The Starbucks Arrests and the Toll of Routine Bias . What we know about the arrests of two black men in a Philadelphia Starbucks , and what the response to the viral story is revealing. 3:23 a.m. The Biggest Revelations From James Comey’s ABC Interview.

1.b Decid-ing to go to Starbucks and work on de-sign reports. 1.c Hoping to find a close parking spot. 1.d Hoping Starbucks is not overly crowded and will have avail-able seating. 1.e Consider-ing alternative places just in case..

As always, there are different versions of what happened, but for once, at least for now, many if not most observers seem to agree that arrests had to have been the end result of racial discrimination. The men appear to have been singled out for not buying anything, even though they said they were waiting for a friend, and were then reported to the police by a Starbucks employee. But while most news coverage has focused on the specifics of this one incident, the response from people of color has revealed yet another angle on the pervasive, routine bias that black Americans must contend with in public, and how discrimination is ultimately understood, or imperceptible, by others.

Below is what we know so far about what happened and the subsequent response — followed by some of what everyone probably should have known, shared by people who have lived through similar experiences.

Starbucks CEO wants to meet black men arrested in cafe, apologize

  Starbucks CEO wants to meet black men arrested in cafe, apologize Starbucks Corp (SBUX.O) Chief Executive Kevin Johnson hopes to meet with the two black men arrested at one of its Philadelphia cafes last week to apologize for the incident, which has sparked accusations of racial profiling at the coffee chain. The men, who had not made a purchase, were handcuffed and arrested for trespassing on Thursday after a store manager called 911 and reported them. Witnesses said the men were calmly sitting in the cafe and in a widely viewed video, some patrons asked police whether they were targeted because they are black.

Yet at that time, Starbucks was the largest roaster in Washington with six retail outlets. In 1981 a plastics salesman noticed the number of plastic Two months later, the new store was serving more than 700 customers a day, and it was selling 300 percent more than the Starbucks locations.

In the small town of Circle, Montana, the one coffee shop—a drive-through window serving drip coffee—recently shut down. Lindsey Mitchell, who owns a bakery and restaurant called C-Towne Bakes, told Quartz that there’s nowhere nearby to pick up an espresso-based drink

The Videos

The first video of the two men’s arrests, which happened at a Starbucks in Philly’s Central City late Thursday afternoon, was posted on Twitter by one of the witnesses of the event, author Melissa DePino. That short video shows police leading the two men out of the Starbucks in handcuffs while appalled onlookers complain and press the officers for an explanation:

So What Happened?

In her tweets highlighting the episode, Melissa DePino, who is white, said that the police had been called since the men hadn’t ordered anything, but they hadn’t ordered anything because they were still waiting to meet a friend. That friend, a white real estate developer named Andrew Yaffe, arrived after the police and can be seen confronting the officers in both videos, asking them why they were called, and wondering aloud if it was “cause there are two black guys sitting here meeting me?” Other people in the Starbucks can also be heard saying that the men did nothing wrong.

Starbucks to close 8,000 U.S. stores for racial-bias training

  Starbucks to close 8,000 U.S. stores for racial-bias training Starbucks Corp will close 8,000 company-owned U.S. cafes for the afternoon on May 29 to train nearly 175,000 on how to prevent racial discrimination in its stores. The announcement from world's biggest coffee company comes as it tries to cool tensions after the arrest of two black men at one of its Philadelphia cafes last week sparked accusations of racial profiling at the chain. Protesters have called for a boycott of the company.

Or perhaps their espresso, cappuccino, macchiato, or frappacino—whatever the case may be. The fact that we even know how to pronounce the names of these drinks is a tribute to Starbucks and the influence it has had on a global scale.

Starbucks hit some trouble a few years ago with falling revenues from the recession and increased competition McDonald's and Dunkin' Donuts have entered the quality coffee market. The People, and the Third Place.

In the longer video, before the men are handcuffed, Yaffe tells the police that he and his friends will just leave and go somewhere else, but one of the officers dismisses the idea.

“They’re not free to leave,” the officer replies. “We’re done with that.”

The officers then handcuff the men, who do not resist, and take then outside.

So far, the two men’s identities have been withheld, but some local reports indicate that they work as realtors. The lawyer for the two men, Lauren A. Wimmer, told BuzzFeed News that the two men were waiting to meet Yaffe to discuss some business opportunities. Before Yaffe arrived, according to Wimmer, a white female manager had asked the men, who had not ordered anything yet, to leave the Starbucks. She then called the police after the men said that they were waiting for their friend. After Yaffe arrived to find his friends being arrested, he called Wimmer for help.

The Philadelphia police later said that the men were arrested for “defiant trespassing,” but were released about nine hours later, at 2 a.m. Friday, after the Starbucks employees and the district attorney’s office declined to press charges.

Starbucks' Howard Schultz breaks silence after arrest of 2 black men

  Starbucks' Howard Schultz breaks silence after arrest of 2 black men In exclusive interview with "CBS This Morning" co-host Gayle King, Starbucks' executive chairman addresses controversial incident"CBS This Morning" co-host Gayle King sat down with Starbucks' executive chairman Howard Schultz to discuss how the company is handling the incident.

Considering such a huge success and the fact that Starbucks is entering most of the international markets (including western Europe, China, Russia, Brazil, among others) one can not help but question: “Why Starbucks is not present in Italy?”.

In my book, The Starbucks Experience: 5 Principles for Turning Ordinary into Extraordinary, I share key components on what has made Starbucks one of the growth stories of our time.

On Saturday, Wimmer insisted that her clients “were blatantly discriminated against based on their race,” though it’s not yet clear if the men intend to file any lawsuits over the incident.

Also on Saturday, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross made a statement defending the arrests, mainly along the line that the officers had followed procedure. He said that the department had received a 911 call about “a disturbance and trespassing” at the Starbucks location, and when the responding officers arrived, Starbucks employees told them that the two men had come into the establishment, sat down without buying anything, and then asked to use the restroom. The employees said they rejected the request, since it is Starbucks’ company policy to deny bathroom access to nonpaying customers, and then asked the men to leave. Ross said that according to the employees, the men refused to leave, even after being warned that the police would be called.

Ross claimed the two officers who responded to the call politely asked the men to leave three times, but they refused, forcing the officers to arrest them. The officers, who were eventually joined at the scene by a police supervisor, followed department policy and “did absolutely nothing wrong,” Ross explained, since they were responding to a private business’ trespassing complaint and had a legal obligation to remove the men. Ross, who is black, also emphasized that the department conducts implicit bias training for its officers to prepare them for scenarios like the one on Thursday. Implicit bias is when a person’s attitudes and stereotypes — based on race, ethnicity, gender, age, appearance, or sexual orientation — have an involuntary, unconscious effect on their judgment and actions. Ross said that he did not believe that such bias had effected the officers’ conduct during the incident.

Can Training Eliminate Biases? Starbucks Will Test the Thesis

  Can Training Eliminate Biases? Starbucks Will Test the Thesis Some researchers say training can help alleviated biased treatment, but others warn that it can be ineffective or even backfire.On Monday, reeling from an incident at a Starbucks in Philadelphia that prompted accusations of racial bias, Howard Schultz, the company’s executive chairman, called the head of a nonprofit public-policy organization to discuss ways to prevent similar episodes in the future.

It seems that the majority of the effort in the Starbucks adoption of lean manufacturing principles is around increasing the quality of the coffee, more consistent taste outcomes, and on reducing the time it takes to make coffee and serve the customer.

I started working at Starbucks about a month ago. I thought I was doing ok till just recently my manager has been telling me that I am to slow. 1. Learn the beverage routine and stick to it. 2. Get used to your personal bar setup (where pitchers, milks, and condiments are placed).

No one else has reported the Starbucks employees’ perspective yet, but witnesses seem to contest the version Ross passed along. One patron who spoke with WPTI-TV confirmed that the incident began after the men were refused access to the restroom, but she claimed that the Starbucks manager did not ask the men to buy something or leave, and just called the police instead. She also said that she had seen a white woman obtain the code for the bathroom without buying something right before the men were arrested, and that during the incident, another person in the Starbucks announced that she had been sitting in the location for hours without purchasing anything.

The witness told WPTI-TV that the two men were just chatting quietly while they waited in the Starbucks, and that they remained calm during the entire ordeal. “These men were discriminated against and unjustly detained,” she asserted. Melissa DePino, who tweeted the original video, also told Philadelphia Magazine that she was sitting very close to the men, and didn’t even notice them until the police arrived and confronted them. “They never did anything remotely aggressive,” DePino added.

No witnesses have described anything the men did that could qualify as causing a “disturbance.”

On Saturday, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney put out a statement saying that he was “heartbroken” over “an incident that — at least based on what we know at this point — appears to exemplify what racial discrimination looks like in 2018.” Kenney also promised that the city would work to review Starbucks’ policies.

Fake coupons emerge after Starbucks incident in Philly

  Fake coupons emerge after Starbucks incident in Philly A series of fake coupons promising free beverages for “people of color” and “African American heritage,” are reportedly making the rounds on social media. The faux vouchers appeared to have originated on a site known for promulgating far-right content and ideas, The New York Daily News reported.The bogus coupons appeared after an incident in which two black men were arrested at a Philadelphia Starbucks after an employee reportedly called police on the two men refused to leave.A video of the arrest went viral, prompting public outrage.

Schultz decided to leave Starbucks to open one of his own coffee shops that would closely mirror the Italian cafe that was so prevalent abroad. However, he later found out that the Starbucks owners were interested in selling their stores.

Instant history bias affects the fund and the fund manager in slightly different ways. For funds, the instant history bias can give the fund a higher rank immediately and create more interest from accredited investors and funds of funds.

Not surprisingly, the story quickly led to online protests, including a lot attention from Black Lives Matter activists, as well as calls for a boycott of Starbucks, complete with recommendations for alternative black-owned coffee shops in the Philadelphia area.

One popular response was to characterize the two men’s only crime as “waiting while black,” a reference to how black Americans are often racially profiled and violently confronted for nothing more than “walking while black.” Overall, equal levels of criticism appear to have been directed at the police officers, Starbucks, and the Starbucks employees responsible for the 911 call. In Philadelphia itself, small protests were also organized over the weekend at the Starbucks where the incident occurred.

How Starbucks Responded, Then Re-Responded

After first promising to investigate what happened on Friday, Starbucks’ initial statement, issued a day later, didn’t go over very well. The company vaguely apologized “to the two individuals and our customers” over the incident and said it was “disappointed this led to an arrest” and would review its policies:

He also said that he would travel to Philadelphia “to speak with partners, customers and community leaders as well as law enforcement,” and hoped to be able to meet with the two arrested men so that he could apologize to them in person. It’s not year clear if or when that will happen.

According to Johnson, the “store manager never intended for these men to be arrested and this should never have escalated as it did.” That may be true, but if so, it’s not clear how the manager — or anyone even faintly aware of the numerous high-profile news stories about racial injustice, particularly at the hands of police, over the past several years — could have not anticipated that outcome. It’s also not clear if Starbucks will discipline the manager, though one report on Sunday night indicated that the company has confirmed that she no longer works at the store, though that may not necessarily mean she was fired.

Starbucks Customer Finds Hidden Camera in Bathroom

  Starbucks Customer Finds Hidden Camera in Bathroom Police say the camera had dozens of videos stored on it.The camera, which reportedly had dozens of videos on it, including some footage of people using the bathroom has since been confiscated, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Its philosophy is to create an experience for the customer and a human connection. With the introduction of the Starbucks Card purchasing drinks, food etc. from the outlets has now been made a lot easier.

Regardless, it’s likely that Starbucks will now try to respond to this incident forcefully, especially since the company has worked so hard to build a reputation as one of the more progressive corporations in America, including high-profile efforts to address racism, albeit with mixed results. The company also heavily promotes how important diversity and inclusion is to its company culture, meaning it needs to protect its employer brand (how current and prospective employees view the company), in addition to protecting its consumer brand.

Yes, This Kind of Thing Happens All the Time

But it might happen a less if more people pay attention to how black men and women have responded on social media, sharing their own similar experiences and related anxieties, and explaining how they feel forced to act in most places of business.

ESPN’s Joel D. Anderson got one thread started on Twitter, explaining that he was struck by the resignation the two men in the Starbucks video seemed to show about their ordeal:

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