As Starbucks closes, Chicago black-owned coffee shop opens up racial discourse

Liberal Senator Ian Macdonald during Question Time in the Senate chamber at Parliament House in Canberra Monday

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Hornes said, in one instance, when her order was not correct and she brought it to the attention of a white employee, that worker rolled her eyes and sighed heavily.

One Northern California-based Starbucks barista said she contemplated leaving her job after the controversial arrest last month of two black men sitting at a Philadelphia location of the coffee chain for several minutes without having purchased anything. "I just thought that was pretty impactful, that people from such diverse backgrounds, different ages, that it was all in middle school".

As they discussed their next steps, a line formed in the drive-thru as tired motorists waited for a barista who was not coming.

"What we're doing today is historic, there's no company in America that has ever done anything quite like this", said Howard Schultz, executive chairman and founder of Starbucks.

After Nelson and Robinson stepped into the cafe, one of them asked to use the restroom while waiting for a third person to arrive for a business meeting.

Others visiting the store questioned whether the training would make a difference or suggested it was overkill.

"I think it's excellent that Starbucks is doing it, because its already a corporation that has a lot of diversity in its staff but they have to be able to project that across the country and not just in a city like NY", said Martin Walker, of Manhattan. "Before it was, 'Oh, I'll just go in here and have a seat for a second - just to kill time if you're on your way somewhere" Isaacs said. In the future, training will address "all aspects of bias and experience".

According to estimates detailed by USA Today, Starbucks likely lost around $12 million by closing its US -based stores on Tuesday afternoon.

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Starbucks' training could have a lasting impact on its employees' behavior and pave the way for other companies to finally tackle racism in their own eateries and shops, said Heather McGhee, president of public policy group Demos.

Many retailers, including Walmart and Target, say they already offer some racial bias training.

The men, Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson, who were asked to leave after one was denied access to the bathroom. It proved a major embarrassment for Starbucks, which has long cast itself as a company with a social conscience. Nordstrom has said it plans to enhance its training after three black teenagers in Missouri were falsely accused by employees of shoplifting. She said that should happen only when there is a provocation or danger.

Still, in closing its doors for a day, Starbucks gave coffee drinkers another option, some that might not have previously been considered. Separately, they reached a deal with Philadelphia for a symbolic $1 each and a promise from city officials to set up a $200,000 program for young entrepreneurs. As I walked the streets of Milan, I saw cafés and espresso bars on every street.

The incident sparked an outcry, and CEO Kevin Johnson swiftly apologized and promised to make sure that nothing like that would happen at a Starbucks again. The 175,000 baristas inside the closed stores took part in racial-bias training created to prevent discrimination, according to Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson.

"We find that oftentimes diversity training has mixed effects, and in some cases it can even backfire and lead people who are kind of already reactive to these issues to become even more polarized", Lai said.

"I just started hearing every second woman had a story of abuse or, frankly, rape and I was shocked, you know, that I was hearing all this and suddenly, as Common said, what I'd always called a relationship did a seismic shift in my mind and realized it was sexual abuse".

For many, the training was overshadowed by ABC's decision to cancel hit sitcom "Roseanne" after its star Roseanne Barr, a Trump supporter, made a remark decried as racist against former White House aide Valerie Jarrett.

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