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Mil Vet Employees at Starbucks Respond to Call for Boycott

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By Debbie Gregory.

President Trump’s executive order banning travel from seven Muslim-majority countries prompted Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz to announce that the company would hire 10,000 refugees in the 75 countries where it does business, with the effort starting in the United States.

The announcement prompted a backlash on social media with several people using the hashtag BoycottStarbucks to urge customers to stay away from its stores. Some users also posted screenshots of them deleting the company’s app on their phones.

But veterans who work at Starbucks have something to say to those insisting the coffee company should hire veterans instead of refugees: “Check your facts, Starbucks is already there.”

Members of the Starbucks Armed Forces Network wrote, “We respect honest debate and the freedom of expression. Many of us served to protect that very right. Some of our brothers and sisters died protecting it,” in its message. “But to those who would suggest Starbucks is not committed to hiring veterans, we are here to say: check your facts, Starbucks is already there.”

Starbucks Armed Forces Network was founded in 2007 to bring partners who served in the military together to bond over their shared experiences, to provide guidance for newly hired partners transitioning from military to civilian life and to create a veteran-friendly workforce.

In 2013, Starbucks made a pledge to hire 10,000 veterans and veteran spouses by 2018. The company has hired 8,800 U.S. veterans and military spouses already as part of its pledge, and said it would reach its veteran hiring target earlier than expected and would continue hiring more.

CEO Schultz and his wife, Sheri, have visited military bases, used their personal wealth to help with plans for service members coming back from active duty, established military family stores at more than 30 bases around the country and encouraged Starbucks senior leaders to visit military bases.

Military Connection salutes and proudly serves veterans and service members in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve,  and their families.

College Tuition for Starbucks Veteran Employees and Their Families

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By Debbie Gregory.

Starbucks is further demonstrating its good corporate citizenship by paying tribute to the families of their employees who have served in the U.S. Military.

The Coffeehouse giant is extending its college scholarship program to cover the spouses and children of veteran employees. In addition, it offers active military workers up to 80 hours of paid service leave.

In a first-of-its-kind collaboration with Arizona State University, the company offers all part- and full-time benefits eligible U.S. employees full tuition coverage for every year of college to earn a bachelor’s degree. Now, the partnership between ASU and Starbucks is being extended to spouses and children of Starbucks U.S. veteran employees. This is an opportunity for them to pick any of the more than 50 undergraduate majors the ASU online campus offers.

In 2013, Starbucks, along with the Schultz Family Foundation, pledged to join forces across the public, private and non-profit sectors to hire, honor and strengthen the military community and to spark a renewed spirit of responsibility for citizenship in America. Two years in, the company has hired more than 5000 veterans and military spouses, passing the halfway goal to hire 10,000 veterans and military spouses by 2018.

“We have a responsibility as a nation to honor our veterans and their families for their service and sacrifice, but it goes beyond saying thank you,” said Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz.

Starbucks recognizes the value of a college education, and wants to put that goal in the grasp of its employees. So far, the existing Starbucks College Achievement Plan has been taken up by more than 4,000 employees.

The extension of the college plan to veterans’ families will affect up to 5,500 Starbucks employees who are veterans or the spouses of military members.

Military Connection salutes and proudly serves veterans and service members in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve,  and their families.

Military Connection: New Book Glorifies Veterans: By Debbie Gregory

Veteran bookAttention all Veterans, history buffs and avid readers: a book about Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans will be hitting store shelves and online retailers soon.

The book, “For Love of Country: What our Veterans Can Teach Us About Citizenship, Heroism, and Sacrifice” is a collaborative between long-time Veteran advocate and Starbucks chairman/CEO Howard Schultz, and 2006 National Book Award finalist and Washington Post editor Rajiv Chandrasekaran. The book will take readers through the struggles that Veterans face, both in combat and back home.

The book highlights the deeds and sacrifices made by Post-9/11 Veterans and their families, from acts of valor during the thick of the fight, to community leadership as civilian teachers, doctors, law enforcement and other occupations.

Since 2001, more than 2.5 million American Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Guardsmen have been deployed in support of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Even with this seemingly high number, Veterans from this era only make up less than 1% of the American population. Schultz and Chandrasekaran co-authored the book in an effort to help the already sympathetic American public better understand what Veterans have and continue to experience as a result of their military service.

It has been reported that Schultz is donating his proceeds from the book to a charity. It is a foregone conclusion that the charity will benefit Veterans. Previously, Schultz pledged 10,000 jobs to Veterans and military spouses. With his wife, Sheri, he founded the Schultz Family Foundation that benefits Post-9/11 Veterans and “opportunity youth.” Earlier this year, the foundation donated $30 million for post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury research. These ailments have plagued Veterans, especially the ones from recent conflicts.

This is not the first book written by either author. In 1997, Schultz co-authored “Pour Your Heart Into It: How Starbucks Built a Company One Cup at a Time,” and in 2011, he co-authored “Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life Without Losing Its Soul.”

In 2006 Chandrasekaran wrote “Imperial Life in the Emerald City: Inside Iraq’s Green Zone,” the inspiration for the film Green Zone, starring Matt Damon. In 2012, he wrote “Little America: The War within the War for Afghanistan.”

“For Love of Country: What our Veterans Can Teach Us About Citizenship, Heroism, and Sacrifice” is a recommended read for everyone. The book will be released on November 4, 2014. Advance copies are available for pre-order at your regular book retailers.

Military Connection proudly serves those who serve in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve, Veterans and their Families. We are the go to site for Veteran Employment and information on Veteran education. Militaryconnection.com provides Veterans with and Directory of Employers, a Job Board, information on the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and a blog that offers Veterans boundless information. Be sure to visit Militaryconnection.com, the go to site.

Military Connection: New Book Glorifies Veterans: By Debbie Gregory