Starbucks commitment to LGBTQIA2+: A safe third place where you are seen, heard and valued

A letter to Starbucks partners from Dennis Brockman, chief global inclusion and diversity officer


We are committed to creating a safe, brave place where you are valued. That includes your right to self-identify in your own way and to be addressed by your preferred or chosen name and pronouns.

We unfortunately live in a time where our LGBTQIA2+ community continues to face hate and uncertainty. We know this is hurtful and may be weighing on many of you. I want you to know that we see you, and we stand with you.

In times like these, our responsibility to create welcoming environments feels more important than ever. It’s why we have stood up for our LGBTQIA2+ partners for more than 30 years – from inclusive health coverage, to expanding voluntary self-identification for partners, to supporting organizations like Human Rights Campaign and National Center for Transgender Equality. And we continue to advocate in support of the Equality Act and oppose the discriminatory policies and actions we’ve seen proposed in many states around the country.

I want to also be very honest in saying we haven’t always gotten this right – and we are committed to turning setbacks into opportunities that are meaningful to your partner experience – like launching pronoun pins across U.S. Retail this summer, expanding our self-ID options, and updating internal systems like Partner Central so they reflect partners’ preferred or chosen names and pronouns. And as we continue to make improvements, we will need your partnership and guidance when we fall short.

I invite you to join us. Here are some ways you can help make a difference:

Additionally, as part of our ongoing efforts to create a brave space for partners to have candid discussions we will be bringing together a panel of partners and advocates engaged in the pursuit for social justice. Please join me in April for a Real Talk discussion on how we continue to support our LGBTQIA2+ partners and communities and ways you can get involved.

I know that the ongoing uncertainty can feel deeply personal, and it’s okay to need to talk to someone. All U.S. partners have access to mental health care options at Lyra. And remember, discrimination and harassment, including intentional misgendering, have no place at Starbucks. If you need support, please call Partner Relations.

Partners, we are in this together and we are committed to doing our part in caring for you and driving real change. Thank you for being part of the journey.

Your partner,

Dennis Brockman (he/him/his)
svp, chief global inclusion and diversity officer