Starbucks accused of anti-gay behaviour

Starbucks is investigating claims that an employee in New York was pressured into quitting because he is gay.

Missy Alison, a woman in a lesbian relationship, alleges in a blog post that three female employees at a Centereach, Long Island outlet chided then dismissed an employee in a “brazen” display of homophobia.

“I have never, in my entire life seen such a gross and unapologetic display of ignorance and intolerance,” she wrote. “I was horrified that my daughter was exposed to that.”

According to Allison's account, a Starbucks manager scolded an employee named Jeffrey in the store for about 15 to 20 minutes. “She told him that they were not interested in his politics or beliefs and his thoughts were down right offensive to his co-workers. They did not want to hear about his personal life."

The Seattle based coffee chain responded to the allegation in a statement saying the company values diversity and strives to create a supportive work environment.

It went on to say company officials were disheartened to hear a barista at a Long Island Starbucks was allegedly berated by his manager for talking about his personal life at work.

"The actions reported do not correspond with our values, who we are as a company or the beliefs we try to instill in our partners," Starbucks said in the prepared statement.

"At Starbucks, we pride ourselves on being a great place to work," the statement read. "We are deeply dedicated to our core values – to embrace diversity and treat each other with respect and dignity."

Date: 15 June 2011


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