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Starbucks executives, directors are sued over diversity policies

By | Jonathan Stempel |

Aug 31 (Reuters) – Starbucks Corp (SBUX.O) executives and directors have been sued by a conservative think tank that believes the coffee chain’s efforts to promote diversity amount to racial discrimination.

In a complaint filed on Tuesday, the National Center for Public Policy Research objected to Starbucks’ setting hiring goals for Blacks and other people of color, awarding contracts to “diverse” suppliers and advertisers, and tying executive pay to diversity.

The plaintiff, a Starbucks shareholder, said those policies require the company to make race-baced decisions that benefit minorities, and violate federal and state civil rights laws.

Thirty-five current and former Starbucks executives and directors, including interim Chief Executive Howard Schultz, are among the defendants.

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