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February 28, 2013


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I must always work in those 10 percent stores. I've never worked alone.

Miss my old Ohio Store!

BS - I don't know when it was implemented, but rule on alone in store has been the same for a very very very long time.
No. Nobody's ever alone in a store.
Not for any reason.

90% of SS's alone in stores... absolutely no way.


Not sure if the policies for cash control are the same there than in Toronto, but we are definitely not allowed to have only one person left to close. Obviously if you only have two closers and you need to run a break, that isn't an issue, but to close with just the cash controller is ridiculous. Aside from either getting robbed, a heart attack or stealing the money themselves, there are so many other reasons we can't be the only ones left. Personally I feel like they've been already breaking some rules in that store and she's one of the problems anyway, age regardless. That and the severe conflict of interest is so questionable.

a former partner

Just because everyone else does it, doesn't mean you should do it. One partner in the store (especially at night,) is very unsafe.

store manager

She will lose. It is clearly against company policy to ever be in the store alone, manager or supervisor or ANYONE.


With the occasional "the opening barista slept in and I need to get things started", I have never worked alone. And I don't even touch the money.

Venti Urnex Latte

Starbucks treats its employees as disposable employees.

We often have supervisors alone in the store -- or else they let their friends in after closing hours.

I hope Margaret wins.


This is not age discrimination, since safety and security policy is very strictly enforced on all employees equally. I have seen people let go for less serious security violations.

It's always been extremely clear we are NEVER to be in the store alone. I have been a shift supervisor for 3 years and have never been in the store alone even for a moment.

Even if there are only 2 people working and one person needs a lunch, they are required to stay inside the store and take a paid lunch break to avoid having 1 person in the store alone.

In addition, if you have supervisors letting people in your store after hours, that is another clear and serious safety and security violation, and they will not get away with it forever. You should warn them before it costs them their job.


There are masny instances where people have been in our store alone, had friends in after hours etc. and nothing has ever happened. Maybe a write up, but otherwise Starbucks makes it almost impossible to fire someone, so I am surprised this lady got fired.

Would be willing to bet she made the top tier dollar and they can pay these new 20 somethings far, far less.


Bull, lattelady. Perhaps you have worked for managers who are unwilling to deal with these problems & instead chose to keep them from coming to the attention of DMs/corporate in order to cover their own behinds, but as a company Starbucks does not turn a blind eye to these violations. And if you see these violations happening & don't speak up about them you are also choosing to allow it to continue.


Whoah, that looks like one schrewd woman... glad I never got to work with her...


Just like guat.my.mala, I have never been in the store alone unless the opening barista overslept. I feel bad for the lady. Maybe she is slowing down. Having said that, I know of a barista who has been with the company about 20 years. He is about 75. He moves slow, doesn't know how to do anything but front register. He still gets respect and his 20 hours per week. He also knows just about every customer that comes and what they drink. I have never seen (in many many years) a case of any kind of discrimination.


A person in my area has been fired before for leaving a partner alone in the store. It's not safe. Especially in the comments above where partners have let friends in to visit as the close. It's an invitation to be hurt.


I sm an opener. I have seen Mgmt. already in the store when I have arrived, and thot nothing of it. They seemed perfectly safe to me. Can anyone NAMEwhat dangers await? I've yet to see any. Age can be a factor though because seniors are perceived as slow and awkward. Most Mgmt prefers the younger worker..That, I have seen in other jobs I have had.


Although I think Margaret is wrong, I have known shifts to work alone while the barista has run to get food, smokes and other things. These same shifts have let friends in after hours and behind the counter, in an apron, during open hours. Nothing has ever happened to these partners, not even a write-up. They should just transfer Margie somewhere and come fire my shift who read everyone's personnel files, admitted to it and justified it, and had NOTHING happen to him/her.


The story sort of implies that she let the partner go home early for a closing shift, but maybe that's not the case? maybe she let the pre-closer go home early, and another partner was in the store and just hadn't clocked in yet? It's true we aren't supposed to work alone, but often at my very slow cafe store, we will give 10's, leaving only one partner on the floor. That partner does not leave the store though, so they are still on site and on the clock.
It's sad, seeing that she ran a coffee stand herself, she is probably used to working alone, but being with Starbucks for such a long time she should know better.

just saying

how much money do people think they'd save by firing an experienced partner?
Even at the wage cap the difference is only $4/hour between highest and newest.
It costs more than that to train new partners.


"Everybody else does it." Nope.
And is she in preschool?

just another partner

yeah... even if the opener is late, we dont go into the store. if the shift HAS to go in to see who they are opening with, they open the door, get the schedule and phone list, and go right back outside and sit in their car and call people to come in. never in the store alone, EVER.


Wish I was in your districts.

I can't tell you how many times I've come in to open and my manager/s would already be in the store. And I've been with the company for a long time.

And Closers having their friends stay behind after hours? Yep. That's happened, too, and not even a write-up (happened at two different stores that I worked at).

Is it illegal? Of course it is. Does it happen. Yes, it does, but when DMs turn a blind eye because of the SM, it's not like anything's going to happen.

As for Margaret, she's 75. The work ethic taught to her as she was growing up and growing old is completely different from when you or I were hired. She probably didn't think twice, because in her mind, she's A. saving the company money. B. helping out a fellow Partner. C. working alone wasn't a big deal "back then."


as for going in to open when someone is late or to grab a list or what not that shouldn't happen either.. as a shift you should know who you open with and have a phone list with you so no if's and's or but's you are not in the store alone

the company just sent out an action item before the holiday season to make sure everyone knows safety and security..


She violated company policy, plain and simple.

But as far as old baristas go, I've worked with them and they suck.

Ms. Barista

It doesn't say she was closing, only in the store alone. When I worked at Starbucks, we had a shift who would take her 30 minute break and leave the other employee alone if it was slow. When management found out she was fired.
On the other hand, I believe there is age discrimination at Starbucks. SDexBarista is typical of many of the employees I worked with. Anyone over 50 was always too slow. Of course, there were plenty of young employees who were not only slow but really lazy as well. But that was okay because they could all be friends. Starbucks is a very difficult place to work for an older employee.


Technically you're allowed to enter the store and wait inside if the opening barista is late. But don't clock in and don't work.


I have never seen a store opened alone. I was an ASM and it was never, ever permitted to be the only partner in the store.

I believe the SM (or, I suppose, DM) was permitted to enter the store alone, but, with the door locked immediately behind.

In absolutely no instance have I ever seen a store run and operated by only one partner.

In addition to it being a safety and security risk for the singleton, the possibility for loss / theft is an inexcusable risk.

In other words: She knew better.


Typical of the new Starbucks. I have a feeling this is common practice at this store (I've worked at multiple stores where even the mgr would go in for an open before the barista got there) and they used this as the excuse to fire her.

Starbucks used to be all about building connections, legendary service, etc. Now all they care about is how fast you can get a customer in/out while following ridiculous standards.

I've seen many veteran baristas and shifts be fired over the last year with absolutely ridiculous reasons. Starbucks is now an ageist company and I hope to hell this woman wins.


Employees are only as disposable as they make themselves. I've seen many firings as of late, and most of the time it's because these people have decided that they know better and don't need to follow standards.

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