Starbucks Closing Today For Anti-Bias Training

11 2018 A sign for Starbucks is seen on a street in New York City. Hector Retamal. AFP

Starbucks apologized for the incident, which sparked protests, online outrage, and calls for both clarifications of the chain's policies and for new training for its employees. "How far can they change that after one afternoon of training", asked Marzia George, who is visiting San Francisco from London and says news about the Philly arrests made its way across the pond.

Starbucks will close more than 8,000 stores nationwide Tuesday to conduct anti-bias training, the next of many steps the company is taking in an effort to restore its tarnished diversity-friendly image. "Closing our stores for racial bias training is just one step in a journey that requires dedication from every level of our company and partnerships in our local communities".

Most of the 7,000 licensed stores, including those operated by hotels, grocery stores and airports, should be open. Which Starbucks locations are closed for bias training?

The Perception Institute, a consortium of researchers consulting with Starbucks, defines implicit bias as attitudes - positive or negative - or stereotypes someone has toward a person or group without being conscious of it.

A store manager called the police because the two men were sitting in the store without placing an order.

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The men - Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson - sat down within the Starbucks, awaiting a business meeting, as the store manager called 911 to report them for refusing to leave.

In addition, they settled with the city of Philadelphia for a symbolic $1 each and a promise that a $200,000 fund will be established to promote entrepreneurship among high school students. Because of the incident in Philadelphia, Starbucks now says anyone can use its spaces without making a purchase, including their restrooms.

"Our hope is that these learning sessions and discussions will make a difference within and beyond our stores", said Rossann Williams, Starbucks executive vice president for USA retail, in a news release.

A video previewing the training says it will include recorded remarks from Starbucks executives.

According to an outline of the training released by Starbucks, staff will watch a series of videos, fill out a special activity book, and talk about their experiences in small groups. Workers will also view a short documentary film.

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