Justice

This Starbucks Barista’s Response to an Order Will Make You Think Twice About Labeling People

April 9th 2016

By:
Kylie Cheung

One Starbucks customer got more than he bargained for during a trip to the coffee chain. A man in Florida anonymously reported being shamed for his drink choice last Friday, according to Florida's Action News Jax. The news station shared a photo of his cup of coffee which instead of a name read: "Diabetes here I come."

"That first word just automatically brought the picture of both sisters in my head, and I was taken aback,” he told Action News Jax. Beyond being outright rude, the comment also struck close to home for the customer, who had two sisters with Type I Diabetes. "Just the struggles they went through and all the doctor appointments they had ... Seeing and knowing the struggle my sisters went through by third, fourth grade, it definitely struck a nerve, and I didn’t just want to let it go," the customer said.

Since the incident, Starbucks has responded to questions from Action News Jax both for the manager of the store and its corporate headquarters. Shown pictures of the cup, store manager Kent Miller said, “No, we definitely don’t condone, but let me find more about this, and I will talk to my boss.” Miller added that drink type and customer name were the only things allowed to be written on the label.

Starbucks corporate sent this statement to the news outlet:

"We strive to provide an inclusive and positive experience for our customers, and we're disappointed to learn of this incident. We are working directly with the customer to apologize for his experience, and with our partners (employees) to ensure this does not happen again.”

Meanwhile, the anonymous customer told the outlet that rather than an apology, he wants to know no future customers will ever be shamed for their drink choices.

According to Action News Jax, a 16-ounce white chocolate mocha has about 470 calories when it’s made with 2-percent milk. It may not compete with the nutritional value of a kale salad, but as a treat, it can certainly be indulged in.

Shaming people for their dietary choices might not quite be the same thing as body-shaming, but it certainly shouldn't be encouraged.