To whom it may concern within Starbucks management:
Today, I came in to work and found that the restrooms of our establishment had been locked and “Out of order” signs placed on the doors. What was the nature of the problem? I was informed that our current quarter profits were insufficient to warrant the further use of company funds to purchase certain items, among which was…toilet paper.
I want to be perfectly honest here--and that may literally be my problem. Early in my shift, a young woman ordered a beverage from me, and after completing the transaction she asked if the restrooms were available. In an effort to keep consistency with the posted signs, I replied, “I’m sorry, miss, but our restrooms are out of order at the moment.” As she walked away, I felt a fair portion of what little self-respect a job like this allows me to keep fall away.
On my lunch break, I went to a nearby store, and with my own money I bought the largest package of toilet paper available (a whopping $9.99 value). I restocked the bathrooms on my own time with my own money, and unlocked the doors because--call me crazy--I believe allowing our customers the right to use a toilet may be a matter of basic human dignity.
Howard Schultz, our beloved CEO who reportedly has a net worth of over $1 billion, took the time recently to send every employee of the Starbucks company a copy of his book “Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul”, reportedly a value of $25.99 apiece, whether they wanted one or not. Am I the only one who sees the irony in this exchange of paper products?
I will be posting this letter on the bulletin board in the employee area of our store, as well as a handful of other places of my choosing. My supervisor at the time of my purchase suggested to me that I keep hold of my receipt and see if perhaps in the next fiscal quarter I can be reimbursed. As a matter of fact, I am holding on to my reciept, but I intend to wipe my ass with it.