Later today, SOME Starbucks stores across the country will host racial bias trainings in hopes of educating Starbies staff to be better equipped to create a diverse, welcoming experience for all. This is a result of the unfathomable treatment of two Black men that were arrested a month ago in Philly. For those that are interested in a preview of what will be discussed, hit the link here. Now, I’m not a fan of a few parts of the curriculum, but I can give credit to them for at least trying. That’s better than donating money, taking offensive product off the shelf, or releasing a statement about how your company isn’t racist and this was an oversight as other companies have done in the past. I’m excited to see how this training plays out, but more importantly, the ongoing education around this important topic.
Starbies is one of many companies that received the #boycott_______ hashtag and seemed to gain some strong traction last month. Now, I’ve noticed that its back to business as usual for many Black and Brown peoples as Starbies looks to conduct their training later today. This got me to thinking, what is the time limit on these boycotts? When is the boycott over? Panama from VSB wrote a piece about H&M that I thought about when I walked in the mall and saw Black people with multiple bags of items from H&M. When we made eye contact, it was almost like they thought I was judging them and their Blackness (I was just a tad). This got me thinking about other companies and organizations that were on the boycott list awhile ago, but don’t know if the boycotting is still in effect. What is the statue of limitations for these boycotts? Most importantly, are we still boycotting these four companies below. If not, who’s charged with sending the update out?
- The NFL: I still see/hear people watching their favorite NFL teams despite what the masses say. Panama brought up a good point about no longer supporting something that’s been an integral part of some individual’s lives. This might bubble back up with the recent policies they’re putting in place regarding the kneeling situation.
- Chik-Fil-A: How can a company with such pleasant people get on the boycott list? Easy! Throw some money to organizations that support anti-LGBTQ policies. I know some people believe that CFA supported #BlueLivesMatter, but in actuality that was not true for every store. Take a look at the link.
- Uber: The company has its fair share of problems (discriminatory practices against people of color and poor treatment of their workers), but most recently (2017), they got on the boycott list because of the company’s CEO, Travis Kalanick’s work with 45. When the immigration ban came into play last year, protests took place at various airports around the country and taxi drivers in NYC protested whereas Uber, on the other hand, eliminated surge pricing at JFK.
- Shea Moisture: A drugstore founded in 1991 that’s been on the shelves of so many Black people in my life, especially Black women. They made a faux pa last year by releasing a short video that highlighted three yt women and one Black women. These women in the video discussed how they previously hated their hair, and how SheaMoisture’s lineup radically changed that sentiment. The video concludes with the text: “Embrace Hair in Every Form,” and with the women proudly declaring: “Everybody gets love!” Black women, who occupy a large segment of their consumer base, cancelled them immediately. I know there were some folks that weren’t keen on fully cancelling them, yet, I still don’t see Shea Moisture products on the shelves.
These are just a few of the popular companies/organizations on the boycott list, but I want to know if these are still in effect. I don’t hear conversations about these any more and still see so many people utilizing these services and companies. Are folks still boycotting these spots or is it over?