Closing L.A. Stores, Starbucks CEO Says Liberal Cities Don’t Fight Crime

Starbucks chief exec Howard Schultz says there’s no way to do business where, in his view, local government lets lawlessness gain a foothold

Coffee tyrant Starbucks announced last week that it’s shuttering 16 U.S. stores this month, including six in Los Angeles, citing safety concerns and, as the corporation put it, “challenging incidents” at those locations that made it too dangerous to continue doing business.

It was pretty clear what Starbucks meant, especially since the announcement coincided with a company memo to employees informing them that their updated training will soon include “how to de-escalate situations, active shooter training.” But in case anyone had any lingering doubt, CEO Howard Schultz spelled it out extra slowly last Wednesday, stating that major American cities—the lib ones—and the governments that manage them, are letting crime run amok, restraining trade and making communities increasingly dangerous.

“I must say, in my view at the local, state and federal level, these governments across the country and leaders, mayors and governors, city councils have abdicated their responsibility in fighting crime and addressing mental health,” Schultz apparently said during an internal meeting, according to a video posted on Twitter, the National Review reports.

The caffein boss further stated, “I don’t have to spend too much time on what’s going on in the country and how America is becoming unsafe, but you all read the press release over the last couple of days that we are beginning to close stores that are not unprofitable. It has shocked me that one of the primary concerns that our retail partners have is their own personal safety.”

But, Schultz emphasized, all’s not… lost?

“Starbucks is a window into America, we have stores in every community, and we are facing things which the stores were not built for…  We’re listening to our people and closing stores, and this is just the beginning. There are going to be many more.”

Starbucks also recently thought better of its 2018 decision following an incident of alleged outrage to open all of its bathrooms to the public.

Stay on top of the latest in L.A. food and culture. Sign up for our newsletters today.