Starbucks' Gun Policy Prompts Boycott on Valentine's Day 2012

Gun control group says Starbucks 'puts millions of Americans at risk every day'


CHICAGO, Jan. 23, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A nationwide boycott of Starbucks stores and its products will be launched on Valentine's Day 2012. Its goal is to eliminate the risk of guns in public places and ultimately to bring sane gun laws to the U.S.

This boycott is being called by the National Gun Victim's Action Council (NGAC), a network of 14 million gun victims, the faith community including the: Episcopal Peace Fellowship, United Church of Christ, Fellowship of Reconciliation (46 peace fellowships and 43 affiliate fellowships),secular groups working to reduce gun violence and many of the organizations that support passing sane gun laws.

WHY STARBUCKS? Currently, Starbucks allows guns and assault weapons to be openly carried in its stores (in 43 states) and concealed and carried in its stores (in 49 states) (See Photos). Starbucks' compliance with the National Rifle Association's Pro-Gun Agenda was exposed in 2010 when members of the "open carry" movement began meeting in popular chains, such as California Pizza Kitchen, Peets, IKEA, Disney and Starbucks openly carrying their handguns and assault rifles. (Types of Guns)

To protect their customers and employees, all of the retail chains—except for Starbucks— banned guns from being carried in their stores.

"Starbucks allowing guns to be carried in thousands of their stores significantly increases everyone's risk of being a victim of gun violence," says Elliot Fineman, CEO of the NGAC. "Open and conceal and carry are among the reasons there are 12,000 gun homicides each year in the U.S. If we had England's gun laws we would expect 375 gun homicides each year—97% less than we have. England's gun laws are based on protecting public safety, ours on maximizing sales for the gun industry." Non-Sane Gun Laws

Starbucks has the legal right to ban guns but despite having been petitioned by thousands, asked at a shareholder meeting, and a direct appeal made to their Board, Starbucks clings to this policy that puts millions of Americans at risk every day and encourages the spread of guns being carried in public.

IMPACT OF STARBUCKS BOYCOTT: Fineman says, "Starbucks steadfast support of the NRA's lethal pro-gun agenda damages its 'socially conscious company' brand. Further," adds Fineman, "Monte Carlo Simulation risk analysis indicates that 90% of the time, our boycott will reduce Starbucks stock price by an amount no rational company would allow."

According to NGAC, the boycott will end when Starbucks rejects the NRA's Pro-Gun agenda by banning all guns from their stores and committing to be an Aggressive Corporate Advocate for sane gun laws.