- Starbucks Mexico opened its second store run and operated by workers ages 52 to 66, the company announced in a press statement. Located in Chapalita Oriente in the state of Jalisco, the store is part of the coffee chain’s initiative to employ more older workers in Mexico, Starbucks said. The company said it entered into a strategic alliance with the National Institute for Elderly People five years ago to ensure that seniors have opportunities to improve their well-being and quality of life through employment. Starbucks said that, for both organizations, it’s important that older workers feel appreciated in “a socially inclusive environment that cares about them and thinks of them as symbols of experience.”
- In its statement announcing the opening, Starbucks featured older workers who described their new working opportunity. Dulce Serrano, age 55, said she realized that working gave her a purpose and that her work ethic can inspire others. Another new employee, Gustavo Blanco Gómez, said he chose to work at the new store to learn new things, find out more about the world of coffee and make new friends. Jaime Garcia said he was looking for a new source of income and to change his daily routine. And Maria de los Ángeles Guzmán said she saw her new job as the next phase of her life.
- “Creating opportunities through our employment programs is part of Starbucks’ essence. We have become the first job experience for 80% of our partners because we believe in them and have designed a personalized career path,” said Starbucks Mexico’s head of HR, Diana González, speaking to the company's diversity and inclusion (D&I) efforts. “We believe in senior citizens who seek new work experiences. We are a multi-generation company that embraces diversity and inclusion, and we are thrilled to continue fostering a well-balanced work environment that includes both young partners and senior citizens.”
D&I programs to attract more women and people of color are an increasingly common occurrence. But some groups, such as older workers, people with disabilities and LGBTQ workers, might easily be overlooked. However, if employers want to establish a work environment that welcomes and is inclusive of all groups, they need to actively consider older workers when recruiting and forming work policies.
Employers might overlook older workers because the intersectionality of gender, race, ethnicity, class and other social categories affects the group. However, older workers continue to face bias and stereotyping in the workplace and come employers actively face suits regarding ageism; ex-agents of Farmers Insurance, for example, alleged that they were fired because of their age and misclassified as independent contractors, in the process. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act prohibits employers from discriminating against people age 40 and older based on age.
In a tight labor market, where employers struggle to attract and retain talent, more are willing to look to previously underrepresented groups such as older workers to staff up and bring knowledge back into the organization — especially as fears of a brain drain begin to take hold in some industries.