Starbucks Draws Fire For CEO's Request Customers Leave Their Guns At Home, But Several Retailers Already Ban Guns

Though Starbucks recently discouraged firearms in its locations, other major corporations have had anti-gun policies for a while.

Late Tuesday Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) CEO Howard Schultz posted an open letter “with a respectful request that customers no longer bring firearms into our stores or outdoor seating areas.”

While it isn’t an outright ban, it does represent a definitive statement for a company that has been caught in the midst of America’s gun debate.

Just this August, supporters held a “Starbucks Appreciation Day” where they brought their firearms into locations around the country to pose for photos and praise Starbucks for standing up to “unjust attacks from certain groups that do not support our right to bear arms,” according to a Facebook page created for the event, which is now covered with angry comments.

Starbucks is joining the ranks of other large companies that have also discouraged, if not banned firearms from their locations.

Costco

Their website  states: “Costco does not believe that it is necessary for firearms to be brought into warehouse stores, except in the case of authorized law enforcement officers.” It also assures clients who feel the policy is “unfair or excessively burdensome” that their memberships can be refunded upon request.

Peet’s Coffee and Tea said in a statement forwarded to The New York Times that while they respect individuals’ rights under the law, “our policy is not to allow customers carrying firearms in our stores or on out outdoor seating presmises unless they are uniformed or identified law enforcement officers.”

California Pizza Kitchen also has a ban on firearms. According to a statement made to the Wall Street Journal, "We are concerned that the open display of firearms would be particularly disturbing to children and their parents.”

CVS Pharmacy

Also issued the following statement: “The safety of our customers and employees is our highest priority, and we believe prohibiting handguns at our stores furthers this priority.”

And lists various tips for gun safety on its website.

Buffalo Wild Wings made a similar announcement earlier this year:

“…because we are focused on the comfort, safety and enjoyment of all of our guests, we have elected to exercise our right to restrict the carrying of firearms within our restaurants.”

There are many other companies who have not outright banned guns in their stores, but are on an “Anti-Gun” list created by the NRA. Though it has been taken down from the organization’s website, it was republished on Talking Points Memo. 

Companies on the NRA List include Ben & Jerry’s, which has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Children’s Defense Fund, an outspoken anti-gun group. Toys-‘R-Us is also anti-gun, apparently for their policy of not selling toy guns in their stores.

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