Starbucks pledges to hire 10,000 refugees

Starbucks’ CEO, Howard Shulz has written an open letter responding to the US government’s actions in the past week, including a move to restrict access of refugees and migrants from seven Muslim countries to the US. In his letter, Schulz outlined the company’s plans to hire 10,000 refugees around the world, offer additional support for undocumented migrants who entered the country as minors and now work at Starbucks, increase efforts to support the business in Mexico, and assure employees, who the company refers to as partners, of access to health insurance. “We are living in an unprecedented time, one in which we are witness to the conscience of our country, and the promise of the American Dream, being called into question,” Schulz said in the letter. Schulz said that the initiative to hire refugees will get started in the US, with a focus on those who have helped US troops in warzones. “There are more than 65 million citizens of the world recognized as refugees by the United Nations, and we are developing plans to hire 10,000 of them over five years in the 75 countries around the world where Starbucks does business,” he said. “And we will start this effort here in the US by making the initial focus of our hiring efforts on those individuals who have served with US troops as interpreters and support personnel in the various countries where our military has asked for such support.”    Schulz’s letter outlines his commitment to the values of the company, and how he plans to implement them in response to recent changes in US government policy. “Starbucks has and will always stand for opportunity – opportunity for our young people who are working to land their first job in the 75 countries where we do business, opportunity for our farmers who care so deeply for the highest of quality coffee we offer to customers all around the globe, and yes, opportunity for those who come to America in search of their own fresh start – whether that is with Starbucks directly, or through our suppliers or our partner companies,” he said. “So, while we seek to understand what the new Administration’s policies mean for us and our business both domestically and around the world, I can assure you that we will do whatever it takes to support you, our partners, to realize your own dreams and achieve your own opportunities. We are in business to inspire and nurture the human spirit, one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time – whether that neighborhood is in a Red State or a Blue State; a Christian country or a Muslim country; a divided nation or a united nation. That will not change.  You have my word on that.”
You can read the full text of the letter here.

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