Starbucks has walked back their initial ban on employees wearing attire or accessories affiliated with the Black Lives Matter movement after they were highly criticized for the decision, with many vowing they would no longer purchase from the coffee giant.
On Wednesday BuzzFeed reported that the chain had said they wouldn’t allow BLM attire because there are “agitators who misconstrue the fundamental principles of the Black Lives Matter movement - and in certain circumstances, intentionally re-purpose them to amplify divisiveness.”
Some people pointed out the company supports the LGBTQ movement and even hands out pins and buttons celebrating marriage equality. When social media caught wind of the news, people were outraged and vowed to boycott the business.
“Anyone who knows me know that I love Starbucks ... After reading this I will no longer spend my black dollars on this chain #blacklivesmatter,” one Twitter user wrote.
On Friday, the business announced they had a change of heart and will now make 250,000 shirts with the words “Black Lives Matter” and “No Justice, No Peace.” Workers in the United States and Canada will have access to them.
Starbucks also noted employees will be allowed to wear their own pins and shirts until the official merchandise arrives. The change didn't suffice for some, though.
“Making a decision to publicly retract their policy on BLM after getting word of losing black business is even more disrespectful than the original move and statement,” another Twitter user wrote Friday. “At least stand on how you REALLY feel. Having a hard time picking sides.”
Other users were also mad that the chain was allegedly taking sides.
“Now you have to let Republicans wear MAGA accessories at work because BLM is a fundraiser for the Democratic Party,” said a Twitter user. “You wouldn’t want to be taking sides now would you? Even Stevens!!!”
Starbucks closed down their businesses for a day in 2018 for racial bias training after two black men were arrested at a Philadelphia location for being inside the business without ordering anything. The company apologized and the men were not charged. RELATED STORIES