Recently, Satarbucks vice-president Kalen Holmes released a memo to the company's US partners that stated:
“Starbucks is proud to join other leading Northwest employers in support of Washington State legislation recognizing marriage equality for same-sex couples. It is core to who we are and what we value as a company. We are proud of our Pride Alliance Partner Network group, which is one of the largest Employer Resource Groups for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) employees in the US, helping to raise awareness about issues in the communities where we live and work.”
Amidst concerns from investors that Starbucks' decision to vocalize their support of same-sex marriage would be financially detrimental, especially in nations where the coffee company is expanding and homosexuality is still a contentious issue, CEO Howard Shultz has spoken out:
“I would say, candidly, since we made that decision, there has not been any dilution whatsoever in our business, and as you can see, shareholder value has increased significantly,” Schultz said. “Performance in many ways should be
one of the metrics to decide whether or not this decision in any way has been dilutive, and it hasn’t.”
That hasn't stopped Starbucks shareholder Jonathan Baker, who's also the head of the National Organization of Marriage's Corporate Fairness Project, from starting a petition and campaign at dumpstarbucks.com.
“Here’s our goal: If Howard Schultz and his insular Seattle liberals hear from enough of us, management will move to a more genuinely inclusive attitude toward its customers’ and partners’ diverse views on marriage,” Baker states on the NOM website. “People should be able to drink or serve a great cup of coffee without betraying their own core values on marriage.”