As protesters took to the streets in hundreds of cities across the globe to support Black Lives Matter and condemn police brutality, coffee giant Starbucks, like many major American companies, rushed to publicly proclaim its support for the movement and they pledged to do more to combat racial injustice.
The retailer vowed on Twitter to "stand in solidarity with our Black partners, customers and communities.” A few days later, it tweeted, and then pinned, an in-depth commitment to supporting Black Lives Matter and confronting bias and racism and to “being a part of change.”
However, company’s baristas and other employees have been told they are NOT to wear T-shirts, pins, or any other accessory that mentions Black Lives Matter.
In fact, the company has explicitly declared that Black Lives Matter attire is now prohibited from the lists of things employees can wear due to its dress code policy. The company has included it in its policy regarding any type of political, religious, or personal accessories or clothing.
However, many employees highlighted how Starbucks not only exempts buttons and attire celebrating LGBTQ rights and marriage equality, but hands them out in shops.