Starbucks Employees: Maternity Leave Policy Benefits Corporate Staff Not Baristas

Posted on April 11, 2017 by Lioness Staff

photo courtesy of Starbucks.com

photo courtesy of Starbucks.com

In January, Starbucks made headlines with a new policy that provides up to 12 weeks of paid leave to parents – moms, dads, adoptive parents and domestic partners – with six additional weeks for birth mothers. The catch? This option is only available to corporate employees.

Jess Svabenik, a Starbucks barista in Silverdale, Wash., spoke to MarieClaire.com about her fight for equal benefits for “the people who wear regular clothes,” who currently only receive six weeks of paid leave for birth mothers, and no paid leave for dads or adoptive parents.

And according to Svabenik, when she flagged the issue internally, “They didn’t seem to understand why we would want the same the kind of benefits as corporate staff.”

Marieclaire.com’s Rebecca Gale reports:

“Paid parental leave for Starbucks employees boils down to one question: Do you wear an apron?

That’s how Jess Svabenik, a Starbucks barista in Silverdale, Washington, interprets the company’s new paid parental leave policy, which provides 12 weeks of paid leave to parents—moms, dads, adoptive parents, and domestic partners—with six additional paid weeks for birth mothers. The catch? This option is only available to corporate employees, ‘the people who wear regular clothes,’ said Svabenik, an eight-year Starbucks employee. Those who wear aprons and work behind counters receive far less: six weeks of paid leave for birth mothers, and no paid leave for dads or adoptive parents.

For Svabenik, pregnant with her fourth child and due in late July, the new policy is surprising—and undermines the goodwill …” Read the complete story here.

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