The hits just keep coming for Starbucks. This time, a woman called 911 when she found a hidden camera inside a unisex bathroom at a Starbucks in Atlanta, Georgia. This news comes a day after the company announced a brief closure in May for racial bias education.
According to local news station CBS 46, the incident happened at a Starbucks in Alpharetta, which is just north of downtown Atlanta. While using the bathroom, the woman looked up and spotted the camera attached to the baby changing station in front of the toilet seat. She actually took the camera and gave it to the shift manager at the location after telling the manager where she found the recording device.
After that, she decided to call 911 and alert police to the incident. According to the responding officer, the shift manager gave police the camera along with a USB cable and a battery pack. As for the manager, he followed Starbucks policy and filed the appropriate report, and waited to hear back from the manager about the next step to take.
Unfortunately, the camera contained 20 to 25 videos, which did show people using the restroom. The store plans to provide footage to police to try to figure out who might have set up the hidden device in the bathroom.
This isn’t the first time somebody placed a hidden camera in a Starbucks. Last year, it happened at a London location according to an Independent report.
Of course, late last week, the arrest of two black men at a location in Philadelphia. According to CBS, Starbucks’ executive chairman Howard Schultz feels ashamed of the fact that a manager ended up asking the men to leave the store and then calling police after the men failed to comply, which ultimately led to their arrest.
On 5/29, we'll close US company-owned stores to conduct racial-bias training to address implicit bias & prevent discrimination. We're taking a hard look at who we are as a company. We’re ashamed & recognize that racial bias is a problem we must address. https://t.co/xIYc75BJPj
— Starbucks Coffee (@Starbucks) April 17, 2018
The resulting protests caused the location to close, but it reopened on Tuesday for business as usual. However, now, at least 8,000 locations will close on May 29 to undergo education so that something like this won’t happen again.
While the hidden camera situation is certainly different than the arrest, it’s yet another negative headline for the coffee giant in a week full of bad news for the company, and it’s a situation that could end up sparking its own controversy.
Hopefully, police catch whoever placed the camera, and Starbucks, as well as other companies, figure out a way to help prevent these types of issues.