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Starbucks Barista Gets Her Tips Stolen, and a Reprimand

What's a poor barista to do when some jerk grabs all of the bills out of the tip jar and takes off? Via this post on The Consumerist blog we learn that at Starbucks, at least, chasing down the thief and flagging down police to arrest the man is the wrong answer.

Starbucks The Austin American-Statesman reports that Starbucks barista Laura Palawski saw a man stuff his hand into the tip jar, pull out all the bills, and run from the shop. She ran after him, which led to a shoving match, but Palawski was determined that "He can't just take our money. That's our grocery money, our gas money; we need that money." She pursued him through the streets of Austin, Texas, and finally flagged down a police officer who responded to her call and arrested the thief.

Palawski's reward? She says she was promptly "written up and reprimanded for her actions" by Starbucks. A Starbucks representative reportedly did not explain the reprimand other than to say that the "safety of our customers and partners (employees) is our highest priority. For their security we do not discuss Starbucks internal protocol. We trust that our store partners will act appropriately under the circumstances to protect themselves."

I won't go so far as to root for things like this to happen at Best Buy, but if it had we could have at least gotten a thorough analysis and discussion of why a reprimand was necessary on the Kathleen Edmond blog.

Posted by Bruce Carton on December 9, 2009 at 03:21 PM | Permalink | Comments (10)


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