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Starbucks to allow non-paying guests to sit inside, use bathrooms

Staff Writer | May 22, 2018
Starbucks issued a new policy to allow people to use its cafes' bathrooms and sitting areas without any purchase in store.
Drinks   Any person is considered a customer
In a recent letter sent to its employees, the company notified "any person who enters our spaces, including patios, cafes and restrooms,regardless of whether they make a purchase, is considered a customer," according to the Wall Street Journal.

The coffee giant has been facing strong public accusations of discrimination after a store manager in Philadelphia last month called the police on two African American men who sat down waiting for a business meeting and one of whom asked to use the bathroom. They were arrested and put into jail for hours.

Starbucks later apologized and announced a plan to close all corporate-owned stores in America for a half-day on May 29 for racial bias education.

The new policy will be in effect at Starbucks' some 8,000 U.S. stores, while it will not apply to customers with "disruptive behaviors" including smoking, alcohol drinking, drug using, and sleeping, the company said.