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Starbucks under fire after calling the police on two Black men who were "waiting for a friend"

KC Orcutt

 // Apr 14, 2018

Twitter @missydepino

This weekend, a video clip has gone viral showcasing two men of color having the cops called on them by a Starbucks employee. Their alleged crime or wrongdoing? According to witnesses, the men were taken out in handcuffs because they hadn't ordered anything while "waiting for a friend" to show up.

The company has issued a statement of apology after the incident, which took place in a Philadelphia location, was brought to their attention. The statement reads in part: "We take these matters seriously and clearly have more work to do when it comes to how we handle incidents in our stores."

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With social media reactions gaining steam online as more and more people become aware of what happened, both the mayor of Philadelphia and the police chief have issued conflicting statements. Police Commissioner Richard Ross is defending the actions of the officers, who responded to a 911 call reporting a trespassing complaint.

Meanwhile, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney has expressed that he feels Starbucks' apology "is not enough," adding that he is "heartbroken to see Philadelphia in the headlines for an incident like that," which he says "appears to exemplify what racial discrimination looks like in 2018."

Additionally, Kenney said that he has "asked the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations to examine the firm's polices and procedures, including the extent of, or need for, implicit bias training for its employees."

As Twitter users respond to news of the incident, many are utilizing the hashtag #BoycottStarbucks, while others are pointing out how the incident exemplifies both how racial profiling commonly still happens in this country and how some non-POC often turn a blind eye to the reality of the situation, all while calling for change and awareness regarding how to combat this problem moving forward.

Take a look at the video clip and see how folks are reacting, below.

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