Starbucks said Thursday that it will require customers to wear facial coverings at all company-owned locations, starting July 15.
The announcement comes as retailers and restaurants try to navigate protecting their employees' health during the coronavirus pandemic without agitating customers who do not wear a mask, even if it is required by the state or locality. Social media videos show customers berating or even becoming violent with cashiers, salespeople and baristas who ask them to wear a mask or leave the establishment.
Starbucks is joining the growing list of companies that require customers to wear masks, including Costco and major airlines. On Monday, the Retail Industry Leaders Association urged governors to step in and require consumers not affected by a medical condition to wear masks when shopping or in public spaces.
Starbucks said that customers who are not wearing a facial covering at locations without a local government mandate have other options to order their drinks. Drive-thru ordering, curbside pickup through its app or placing a delivery order will be open for those customers.