We just saw the U.S. Starbucks close down its outlets for several hours to allow for sensitivity training of staff following an event at a Philadelphia branch where an associate racially discriminated against two black men, refusing to let them use the washroom without making a purchase, and then calling police and having them arrested when they did not leave the premises.
In addition to the training Starbucks announced its new policy of making its washrooms available to one and all, no purchase necessary. I want to take that one a bit further.
I have found that the Starbucks restroom facilities are generally plagued by large queues. You can wait in line for ages to do your business. One reason is their lavatories are small and inadequate. Actually they're all one seaters. On more than one occasion I have waited in line with hope and desperation while the occupant just before me, often a student, is in there leisurely, with his Mac likely working on his doctoral thesis.
Simply put, they need more toilets.
Given that Starbucks has turned a new page and opened its doors to all as a general gathering place, as long as you do not bring in alcohol or come there to sleep, I believe they should be amenable to increasing their number of W.C.s. After all the closure cost them $12 million in lost profits, which the brass calls not a loss but an “investment “. In my view expanding the latrine availability would be a super investment, much appreciated.
Perhaps they can consider using portables. And just like they have tacky names for their products, they can similarly name these new additions. I have a few suggestions in mind.
How about “Java John”? Bring it on.
And who wouldn’t get a kick out of “Cappuccino Can”?
For visitors who would really have to go, like now, how welcome would they feel upon seeing a privy sporting the words, “Espresso Express.”
Personally I don’t go for the fancy coffees and my usual is the regular filter brew. When nature would call, I would be happy to just enter a loo reading, “Pike’s Place”.
But for those who just have to have their Latin lingo fix, staying in tune with Starbuck’s current products nomenclature, I have a bang on sign. How about, “Veni, Vidi, Voidi “.
Will it happen? I don’t know. Maybe I’ll drop a note into their suggestion box. However I'm not optimistic. I have a good idea where they’ll put my note.