Just two weeks before Starbucks was set to close thousands of locations for ” racial-bias education,” for its employees, it is once again facing scrutiny after a barista at its La Cañada location targeted a Hispanic customer with a racial slur.
Pedro, who asked not to be identified by his last name, ordered two coffees from the cafe and received his order with the word ‘beaner’ on both cups in place of his name, he told NBC4’s sister station, Telemundo 52.
“It’s an offensive word used towards Latinos,” he said.
Pedro does not believe the slur could have been written by accident because the barista called his name once his order was ready.
“That’s clearly really racist,” Ana Garcia, a customer at the location, said. “What can I tell you? It’s sad to hear that, to be honest.”
In an effort to compensate the experience, the location offered Pedro a $50 gift card.
“I didn’t accept it because it’s like an insult overall,” he said.
In a statement, the coffee chain said it is working to remedy the incident.
“This is not the experience that we want for our clients,” the statement said. “We asked for his forgiveness and we are working to correct this. Also, we are investigating the incident to ensure this will not be repeated.”
Starbucks has been facing nationwide outrage after viral cellphone video showed two Black men at one of its locations in Philadelphia being arrested by police. The two men, Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson, were waiting for a business meeting they scheduled at the store.
Soon after their arrival, Nelson asked the cafe’s manager if he could use the restroom but was declined because he had not made a purchase. Minutes after the interaction, police arrived after being summoned by said manager.
The barista believed to be responsible for writing the slur at the La Cañada location is said to be in her 20s.
Pedro is expecting to meet with one of the location’s employees on Thursday and although he is unsure of what will come of the interaction, he hopes the barista will face serious consequences.