News of scandals spreading like wildfire on social network community presenting a united front show increasing power to humble even the biggest service providers. Giants beware, the people are not mute anymore.
Starbucks closes 8,000 stores to organise awareness education due to impact of social network commnunity
On April 17, Starbucks Coffee Company announced closing its more than 8,000 company-owned stores in the US in the afternoon of May 29 to conduct racial-bias education geared towards preventing discrimination in the stores. The training will be provided to nearly 175,000 partners (employees) across the country, and will become part of the onboarding process for new partners.
“I have spent the last few days in Philadelphia with my leadership team listening to the community, learning what we did wrong and the steps we need to take to fix it,” said Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson. “While this is not limited to Starbucks, we are committed to being a part of the solution. Closing our stores for racial bias training is just one step in a journey that requires dedication from every level of our company and partnerships in our local communities.”
All company-owned Starbucks retail stores and corporate offices will be closed in the afternoon of May 29. During this time, partners will go through a training programme designed to address implicit bias, promote conscious inclusion, prevent discrimination, and ensure everyone inside a Starbucks feels safe and welcome.
"The company's founding values are based on humanity and inclusion," said executive chairman Howard Schultz, who joined Johnson and other senior Starbucks leaders in Philadelphia to meet with community leaders and Starbucks partners.
“We will learn from our mistakes and reaffirm our commitment to creating a safe and welcoming environment for every customer," Howard Schultz added.
It was the latest bid by the behemoth coffee chain to recover from the last incident in Philadelphia, which was captured on video and went viral, getting millions of views.
The video posted on Twitter by a Starbucks client shows uniformed police questioning and then handcuffing two men who offer no resistance as a white client repeatedly asks an officer, "What'd they do? What'd they do?"
Philadelphia police said they received a 911 call from a Starbucks worker who said the men were trespassing, after refusing to buy anything. Police said officers had "politely" asked the two to leave before finally arresting them.
They reportedly asked first to use the bathroom, but were told it was only for paying customers.
The two men's lawyer, Lauren Wimmer, told a CBS affiliate in Philadelphia that they had been waiting for a third man to arrive for a business meeting.
GrabBike hit by sexual harassment scandal
According to Laodong, in the past two days, the social networks have been ablaze with outrage over the alleged verbal sexual harassment of a nine-year old girl by a GrabBike driver in Hanoi.
According to information posted on Facebook by the girl’s mother, the driver was suspected to have verbally harassed her daughter during the route from her home to school.
The police of Buoi Ward in Tay Ho district have received the report of the mother and they are investigating the incident.
After receiving information about the incident, Grab sent an apology to the customer, while simultaneously proposing to pay for psychologist as well as a private car to take the girl to school while the local authorities resolve the incident to ensure her psychological wellbeing.
Firms must be clever and flexible in dealing with scandals, otherwise they risk facing a boycott as the power of the social network community is growing and solidifying.