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Calls for boycott of Starbucks after removal of vaccine rule | KTAB

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(AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

(NEXSTAR) – Coffee giant Starbucks faces windfall criticism on Wednesday after the company announced it no longer requires U.S. workers to receive COVID-19 vaccines or test negative weekly, the juggernaut java citing a recent US Supreme Court decision as its reasoning.

Last week, SCOTUS voted 6 to 3 against the Biden administration’s federal mandate requiring employees of companies with more than 100 workers to be vaccinated. Starbucks currently has about 9,000 stores employing about 200,000 workers, The New York Times reports.

In a statement to employees, Starbucks Chief Operating Officer John Culver wrote, “We respect the court’s decision and will comply with it.”

The announcement came just weeks after Starbucks said all employees should be vaccinated by Feb. 9 or undergo weekly COVID-19 tests. Many online consumers condemned the decision, with #BoycottStarbucks trending on Twitter on Wednesday afternoon.

“I won’t go to Starbucks or anywhere that doesn’t require workers to be vaxxed,” tweeted @SoCalSusan. “Our health is worth defending.” Meanwhile, @Charles_791 writes: “Vaccines prevent serious illness and death. All measures have been taken to ensure that the vaccines are safe and effective for people aged 5 and over. It’s such a shame that a brand as big as Starbucks made such a ridiculous decision.

Starbucks has previously faced boycott calls for various decisions, including backlash in 2020 after the company said employees weren’t allowed to wear items supporting the Black Lives Matter movement, saying it could “amplify the division”. Starbucks reversed its decision last year.

The company’s decision was not without supporters, however. Some conservative users tweeted their approval, with some promising to Continue or even to start frequent Starbucks.

Meanwhile, Culver says that while the requirement is now gone, “…we continue to firmly believe in the spirit and intent of the mandate.”

Calls for boycott of Starbucks after removal of vaccine rule | KTAB

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