I SENT MY BLOG POST CONCERNING STARBUCKS TO THE CORPORATE OFFICE AND RECEIVED A REPLY. BELOW YOU WILL FIND THEIR RESPONSE AND MY REBUTTAL, IN REVERSE ORDER:
Thanks for your reply. It would appear by your response that perhaps Mr. Schultz has met part of his 2013 commitment and it has worked well for those that were hired. The figures you have been kind enough to share were not readily available. In fact, what information that was available mentioned the commitment to be only half fulfilled. Regardless, whatever the number hired is honorable and I am pleased for you that you are satisfied.
However, I would like to point out a few additional items for you to consider since you are paid to be the spokesperson:
For the record, I too own a large business and make special accommodations for veterans. There are thousands of companies doing the same, so Mr. Schultz has not cornered that market. Most did not have to fraternize with Mr. Gates or the Washington circle either – we just did it because it was the honorable thing to do. In most businesses vets are not paid minimum wage either.
Your response seemed somewhat “canned” as if it was put out to quell the firestorm Mr. Schultz started with his announcement. Which, I will point out, was the reason for my blog post and subsequent boycott of Starbucks in the first place. The fact is, Mr. Schultz has not met his commitment with the veterans after four years, yet in order to put his thumb squarely in the eye of our president, and your commander in chief, he had to announce the refugee commitment the Monday after President Trump rolled out his ban of refugees. It was meant more as a political stunt than an act of goodwill on the part of Mr. Schultz. Well, Mr. Schultz wanted attention, and he got it. The fact is, he got the attention of all of us that voted for Trump, as we are getting tired of the liberal response in opposition to everything President Trump does, says, or tweets. It was why Mr. Trump was elected in the first place.
Your company response did not address an announcement to hire black youth with their inordinately high unemployment rate, or the coal mining industry areas, or the homeless, to use as examples. (Starbucks might have to reduce their prices to a level where those people might even be able to afford their product.) No, Mr. Schultz wanted the fashionable liberal publicity of sticking it to President Trump. Perhaps this will get him in a little cozier with those intellects in the Hollywood crowd, but it isn’t working with middle-America.
And what have you to say about the Black Lives Matter fiasco? Two of my son-in-law’s, the father of five of my grandchildren, are policeman – I don’t take too kindly to wealthy liberals egging on the demise of our country’s police force. Then there is also the matter of my 2nd Amendment rights – who the hell is he to dictate to me a right guaranteed in this country? No, Cindi, your response is not sufficient in my mind to quell this firestorm. Mr. Schultz needs to rescind his announcement, or amend it to include some of those folks I mentioned previously. And above all, he owes our President an apology for ill-timed remarks. And the next time you are looking in the mirror, you may want to put aside your company blinders and consider some of what I have said yourself.
My personal boycott will not put a dent in Mr. Schultz’s pocket money – of that I am aware. But as I mentioned previously, half his customer base is Conservative and Mr. Schultz would do well to remember that the next time he opens his mouth.
Alan N. Webber
From: Starbucks Customer Care [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Friday, February 3, 2017 11:59 AM
To: Alan Webber <AWebber@anwebber.com>
Subject: RE: FW: Media request <<#200-17916150#>>
We write to you today as representatives of the thousands of veterans and spouses who currently work for Starbucks Coffee Company, and to express our gratitude for your business as well as to address misinformation that has been circulating since our company announced their commitment to hire 10,000 refugees around the world.
Starbucks has received an outpouring of support for the actions our CEO Howard outlined. The company has also received criticism. While much of this discussion has been healthy debate, the false and inaccurate statements about Starbucks commitment to hiring veterans and spouses is deeply troubling to those of us who served. We've seen first-hand the hard work and dedication of our fellow employees to transform Starbucks into one of the preeminent veteran friendly companies in America.
We the veterans of Starbucks would like to set the record straight.
As our armed forces drew down in 2013, veterans at Starbucks asked the company to consider hiring more service members as they transitioned from active duty and sought their first civilian job. We also asked the company to extend this effort to military spouses because we knew first-hand that their support made our service possible.
In November 2013, Howard and former Secretary of Defense Bob Gates announced Starbucks commitment to hire 10,000 veterans and military spouses over the next five years.
Perhaps more importantly, our boss not only launched this initiative but he inspired the company to become one of the leading corporate veteran advocates and supporters.
Howard and his wife Sheri visited military bases to get to know our nation's service members. They poured substantial personal financial resources into their own family foundation to design plans for transitioning service members. Starbucks established military family stores at over 30 bases around the country. Howard encouraged Starbucks senior leaders to visit our military bases and get to know our military on a personal level, knowing it would lead them to hire more veterans and their spouses. And much, much more.
Less than four years into the commitment, Starbucks has hired over 8,800 veterans and spouses, and counting.
Without question we will reach the 10,000 goal early, and we will keep going. None of this would have been possible without our boss's very personal commitment. Howard didn't just authorize our veteran initiative, he led it.
And so you can imagine our reaction when we read criticism of our company and of our CEO suggesting that instead of a commitment to refugees, we should instead hire 10,000 veterans.
We respect honest debate and the freedom of expression. Many of us served to protect that very right. Some of our brothers and sisters died protecting it. But to those who would suggest Starbucks is not committed to hiring veterans, we are here to say: check your facts, Starbucks is already there.
We want to thank you as our customers for your business. Without your support, our veteran's initiatives are not possible. Every day, there are thousands of veterans, reservists and military spouses working at Starbucks stores serving you. You can find many of us proudly wearing American flags emblazoned upon our green aprons. And we look forward to continuing to serve you in the days, months and years to come.
Since publishing Howard's letter to our employees, "Living Our Values in Uncertain Times" we have heard an outpouring of support for the actions that were outlined, but also received questions and criticism. And while we appreciate the feedback and are listening, we'd also like to share some ways that Starbucks had continued to create opportunities for its people and the communities we serve:
We do hope this provides perspective on how we are creating opportunities for all of those who wish to pursue a pathway with Starbucks. From the very beginning, Starbucks has aimed to be a different kind of company: one deeply steeped in the values inherent to America and committed to creating opportunities and building trust in the communities we serve. Please know your feedback has been sent to the appropriate parties and we appreciate you contacting us.
With great respect,
The Men and Women of Starbucks Armed Forces Network (AFN)