The INSIDER Summary:
• Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz announced that the company will hire 10,000 refugees over the next five years.
• The announcement follows President Trump’s executive order banning refugees from seven countries.
• Schultz also shared plans to continue business with Mexico and provide healthcare for employees.
• This is not the first time Schultz has expressed his political views.
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz sent an open letter to employees on Sunday outlining the company’s plan to hire 10,000 refugees over the next five years. The announcement comes on the heels of President Donald Trump’s executive order that effectively bans refugees from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.
Schultz expressed “deep concern” with the policy, and promised to keep Starbucks shops a welcoming place for all people.
“We have a long history of hiring young people looking for opportunities and a pathway to a new life around the world,” he wrote. “This is why we are doubling down on this commitment by working with our equity market employees as well as joint venture and licensed market partners in a concerted effort to welcome and seek opportunities for those fleeing war, violence, persecution and discrimination.”
The letter also expressed continued support for “Dreamers” through the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, pledged to donate 4 million coffee trees to families in need in Mexico, and reassured employees that Starbucks will continue to offer health insurance.
#BoycottStarbucks began trending on Twitter shortly after the announcement, but Schultz is not backing down.
“We are in business to inspire and nurture the human spirit, one person, one cup and one neighbourhood at a time — whether that neighbourhood is in a Red State or a Blue State; a Christian country or a Muslim country; a divided nation or a united nation,” he wrote. “That will not change. You have my word on that.”
This is not the first time the Starbucks CEO has voiced his political views. He endorsed Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential race, and wrote an op-ed in the New York Times blasting self-centered politicians and calling for a “servant leader.” Some have even speculated that he might have political ambitions himself since he announced his departure as CEO come April 3, but he wrote in the op-ed that he has “no intention of entering the presidential fray.”
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