Starbucks stores to close Tuesday for anti-bias training - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Starbucks stores to close Tuesday for anti-bias training

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The sign for a Starbucks Coffee shop is seen in New York on April 17, 2018. (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images) The sign for a Starbucks Coffee shop is seen in New York on April 17, 2018. (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)

SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) — Starbucks is set to close thousands of stores across the country on Tuesday to put employees through anti-bias training, but some aren't convinced it will lead to any meaningful changes. The training sessions come in response to an incident in Philadelphia last month where a Starbucks manager called police on two black men who were waiting to meet someone.

Video of the two men being arrested for trespassing quickly went viral. The pair had been waiting for another man for a business meeting without making a purchase. One of them had asked to use the restroom and was told that he couldn't.

In response, the coffee chain giant will close its stores on Tuesday to provide racial bias training to its thousands of employees; the much-publicized move is estimated to cost Starbucks $12 million in lost profits nationwide.

"They might be losing millions of dollars for that day but in the long run, they'll make it up," said Elena Rodriquez

Starbucks founder Howard Schultz spoke with CBS News shortly after the incident.

"It will cost millions of dollars, but I've always viewed this and things like this as not an expense, but an investment in our people and in our company," said Schultz.

RELATED: As Starbucks trains on implicit bias, the author of 'White Fragility' gets real

Some question if a day-long "sensitivity training" for employees will make a true difference.

"I don't think by closing down the stores it's going to change anything," said Yvonne Yandall.

"It's not something that you can just teach in one day," said Maria Vigil.

Others say a four-hour training session in racial sensitivity is better than nothing.

"How can sensitivity training hurt?" said Rodriguez. "I think if the company wants to do this, kudos to them."

"A day of training could help, but I think they need, actually, much more than that," said Angad Manchanda.

Starbucks corporate leadership has conceded as much.

"This is not going to be a one-day event where we're going to do something and leave," said Shultz. "We're gonna stay with this. It's going to be significant. It's going to endure. And we're going to transform the way we do business."

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