Decaff grande cappuccino, half-fat, no whip, extra shot... oh, and no gun: Starbucks announces firearms are no longer welcome at its 7,000 US coffee shops

The company made its decision before the shootings at the Navy Yard in Washington DC earlier this week, which left 13 people dead

Los Angeles

It’s your Glock or your grande soy latte. After being dragged reluctantly into the debate over gun legislation, Starbucks has announced that firearms will no longer be welcome at its 7,000 US coffee shops. Several national retail and restaurant chains do not allow guns on their premises, but until now Starbucks has chosen to defer to local firearms regulations, allowing guns in outlets in those US states with an “open carry” law.

As the fight over gun control has escalated, the coffee giant – which traditionally adopts a progressive posture on social issues – has found itself an unwilling focus for protest. In July, some 60 people toting firearms held an event at a branch in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Last month, gun rights advocates called a national “Starbucks Appreciation Day”, wearing their weapons to Starbucks outlets across the US to celebrate the firm’s supposed Second Amendment stance.

When gun lovers gathered at a Starbucks in Newtown, Connecticut – where 26 people including 20 children were killed in a mass shooting at an elementary school in December 2012 – staff closed the branch early before the event could get underway. Meanwhile, the anti-gun lobby group Moms Demand Action has organised a series of “Skip Starbucks Saturdays”, designed to shame the chain into banning firearms.

In an open letter published on the firm’s website on Tuesday and addressed to “Fellow Americans”, Starbucks chief executive Howard Schultz said events such as Starbucks Appreciation Day “disingenuously portray Starbucks as a champion of ‘open carry.’ To be clear: we do not want these events in our stores”

Mr Schultz has not gone so far as to issue a full ban on firearms in Starbucks stores, saying he did not want staff to be forced to confront armed customers. Instead, he wrote, he was making “a respectful request that customers no longer bring firearms into our stores or outdoor seating areas.”

The change in policy will also be announced with full-page advertisements in editions of the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post and USA Today.

Mr Schultz said that the company had made its decision about firearms before the shootings at the Navy Yard in Washington DC earlier this week, which left 13 people dead.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Voices
Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
News
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
Sport
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas