Starbucks Responds to Trump Immigration Ban by Promising to Hire 10,000 Refugees

published Jan 30, 2017
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Starbucks has responded to Trump’s immigration ban by promising to hire more refugees. President Trump signed an executive order on Friday that stops the resettlement of Syrian refugees in the United States and bans immigrants and refugees from seven Muslim-majority nations (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen) for 90 days. Protesters have gathered at airports around the country, lawmakers have spoken out against the order, and CEOs of major companies have vocalized their disapproval.

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz went beyond merely not condoning the immigration ban by vowing to hire 10,000 refugees around the globe over the next five years. Shultz outlined this plan and more in a message to all partners this past Sunday.

In the United States, the company will focus on hiring individuals who have served with U.S. troops. More immediately, existing employees impacted by the immigration ban can receive help from Starbucks’ Partner Resources team.

“There are more than 65 million citizens of the world recognized as refugees by the United Nations, and we are developing plans to hire 10,000 of them over five years in the 75 countries around the world where Starbucks does business,” Schultz noted. “And we will start this effort here in the U.S. by making the initial focus of our hiring efforts on those individuals who have served with U.S. troops as interpreters and support personnel in the various countries where our military has asked for such support.”

(Image credit: Real Life Design)

Schultz’s letter also addressed its business relationship with Mexico in light of Trump’s plan for a wall funded by a 20 percent tax on Mexican imports. He stated Starbucks will continue to invest in Mexico and would “stand ready to help and support our Mexican customers, partners, and their families as they navigate what impact proposed trade sanctions, immigration restrictions, and taxes might have on their business and their trust of Americans.”

Additionally, Schultz outlined other measures the company will take under a Trump presidency. For instance, Starbucks employees who are a part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program will be reimbursed for the biennial fee to continue staying in the program. The company also promises to provide healthcare to employees at risk of losing Obamacare (Affordable Care Act).

“We are in business to inspire and nurture the human spirit, one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time — whether that neighborhood is in a Red State or a Blue State; a Christian country or a Muslim country; a divided nation or a united nation,” wrote Schultz.