While ordering a drink at a Starbucks in St. Augustine, Fla., last week, a man, who wishes to remain anonymous, received his beverage with a rude message about diabetes on the label. The Starbucks barista may have thought his joke was funny, however, the customer didn't quite see it that way.
The customer was deeply offended when he received his White Chocolate Mocha drink at Starbucks with the words "Diabetes here I come" on the cup's label where the person's name is typically written. The message negatively hit close to home for the man - he has two sisters with type 1 diabetes.
"That first word just automatically brought the picture of both sisters in my head, and I was taken aback," said the customer. "Just the struggles they went through and all the doctor appointments they had... Seeing and knowing the struggle my sisters went through by third, fourth grade, it definitely struck a nerve, and I just didn't want to let it go."
The customer wrote a note back to the employee on the same cup writing, "2 of my sisters are diabetic, so.... not funny." He just wants reassurance that this won't happen in the future to other customers.
— Kaitlyn Chana (@KaitlynANjax) April 9, 2016
When asked if this was something that Starbucks condones, the store's manager Kent Miller said, "No, we definitely don't condone [it]." He went on to explain that the only thing that should be written on a drink's label is what kind of drink it is and the customer's name.
"We strive to provide an inclusive and positive experience for our customers, and we're disappointed to learn of this incident," Starbucks' corporate headquarters said. "We are working directly with the customer to apologize for this experience, and with our partners (employees) to ensure this does not happen again."
A grande White Chocolate Mocha is 16 ounces and contains 470 calories and 59 grams of sugar, which is 21.5 grams more than the maximum suggested daily amount. A Starbucks spokesperson explained that the barista did not mean to offend the customer, but thought that they had a friendly relationship and did not realize the joke would be considered offensive.