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Starbucks unveils first store in Ferguson, Missouri

Staff writer |
Starbucks unveiled its first store in Ferguson, Missouri as part of a national plan to provide local jobs.

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Starbucks plans to open similar stores in at least 15 low- to medium-income communities across the U.S. by 2018.

With an estimated 5.5 million young Americans not in school or at work, the majority of whom live in some of the country’s most diverse, yet underserved communities, Starbucks aims to make a long-term impact by opening stores that will help provide a tangible boost to the local economy and bring meaningful jobs.

“We’ve long considered how we can help deliver social impact in ways that drive our business forward,” said Rodney Hines, Starbucks director of Community Investments for U.S. Retail Operations.

Nationally, 1 in 7 young adults does not work or attend school[1], a challenge that is compounded in low- to medium-income communities like Ferguson, particularly among young people of color.

In the St. Louis region, 14% of young people ages 16-24 – an estimated 48,000 young men and women – are disconnected from jobs and educational opportunities[2] and nearly half of all young African American men in the area are unemployed, compared with 16% for young Caucasian men.

In addition to creating new local jobs, Starbucks will work with nonprofit partners like the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis to provide a robust, multi-week job skills training program for local youth, using a specially-designed classroom space within the store.

Starbucks hopes to work alongside community partners like the Urban League to help address some of the systemic barriers facing young people in the Ferguson area.

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