Philadelphia Starbucks employee fired after allegedly mocking customer's stutter

Starbucks employee fired after mocking stuttering customer

Starbucks employee fired after mocking stuttering customer

The coffee chain, which closed all USA stores on May 29 for racial bias training after an employee called the police on two black men who were waiting for a friend and had them arrested, is in hot water once again after a Facebook post appeared to contain evidence of another employee mocking a customer with a stutter.

The coffee chain says the behaviour did not reflect the experience customers should have and the employee is no longer with Starbucks.

Sam's friend, Tan Lekwijit, initially posted a complaint to Starbucks' official Facebook page after he learned what happened, but the company allegedly deleted the post.

The barista replied "Okay, S-s-s-sam" and, retrieving his iced coffee, found the label was marked "SSSAM", according to friend and business school student Tan Lekwijit, who reported the incident on Facebook. When he received his coffee, he was shocked to see that his name on the cup was written as "SSSAM", which was disrespectful. Lekwijit wrote that Starbucks did not get the point and said they should treat their customers who have speech impediments with more respect.

Lekwijit then took to his own personal Facebook page to share details about the incident, along with photo proof of the cup.

Lekwijit said Sam emailed Starbucks after, who responded to say that they were sorry he "felt disrespected" and offered him a $5 drinks voucher. "Getting this kind of treatment from people, especially service employees, only scars them - and I beg Starbucks employees to have this in mind". "I sort of got a generic email, and I didn't feel like I was heard", he said.

In April, a Starbucks in Philadelphia's Rittenhouse neighborhood made nationwide headlines when two black men were arrested while waiting for a friend. "Not just my friend, but for other people with speech disorders", Lekwijit told the Philadelphia Inquirer on why he decided to make the post.

"We want our stores to serve as a welcoming place for everyone who visits and want to ensure our partners provide a positive experience", Starbucks wrote.

A day later, Starbucks responded in the comments, saying that it has "zero tolerance for discrimination".

Recommended News

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.