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Controversy over Starbucks & Pride Month

Controversy over Starbucks & Pride Month

June is often synonymous with a vibrant splash of rainbow-themed logos, a demonstration of support from businesses towards the LGBTQIA+ community. However, global coffee giant Starbucks seems to be dialing back on its overt support during Pride Month, sparking a new series of employee strikes following allegations of banning Pride decorations at its storefronts.

Starbucks & Pride Decorations: Allegations and Denials

The charges against Starbucks came to light via a tweet from Starbucks Workers United, an advocacy group spearheading the unionization of company-owned stores across the country. The tweet suggested an alleged ban on Pride decorations at Starbucks stores.

In response, Starbucks promptly denied the allegations. The company reiterated its "unwavering support for the LGBTQIA2+ community", emphasizing that there have been no policy changes regarding Pride Month celebrations.

Regional Changes and Union Strikes

Following these revelations, Starbucks Workers United called for a week-long strike starting June 23rd. They predicted that around 3,500 workers would participate in these strikes. The action began over the weekend and resulted in 21 Starbucks locations, including the iconic Reserve Roastery in Seattle, temporarily shutting down. According to US News, the strikes will continue throughout the week and are likely to affect more than 150 locations.

Starbucks' History of LGBTQIA+ Support

The supposed ban on Pride decorations seems to be at odds with Starbucks' historical support for the LGBTQIA+ community. Starbucks has a track record of providing full healthcare benefits to same-sex partners since 1988, covering gender confirmation surgeries, and sponsoring Seattle Pride. Starbucks CEO, Laxman Narasimhan, even confirmed that a Pride flag is currently hoisted over their Seattle headquarters.

Ongoing Strikes due to Starbucks & Pride Controversy

The strikes initiated by Starbucks Workers United are set to continue until June 30th. Starbucks Workers United has a map of the locations closed here.

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