Starbucks is teaming some of its restaurant bathrooms with boxes of needle disposal after workers have complained of the potential health risk of cleaning discarded drug accessories.
The company is taking action to address HIV and hepatitis-related health issues, both of which can be transmitted through used needles, Starbucks told CBS News in an email. "These societal problems concern us all and can sometimes place our partners (employees) in alarming situations," said a spokesman for Starbucks.
The added recovery boxes would allow people to get rid of needles, syringes and other sharp objects that could slice a plastic garbage bag and potentially injure someone.
Nearly 3,800 workers signed Coworker.org petition Starbucks calling to take precautionary measures in high-risk bathrooms, worry being fueled by the opioid epidemic in the United States
"Employees risk getting stung, even after following the" protocol "of using gloves and pliers to get rid of needles left in bathrooms, disposal boxes. buffers and diaper changing stations ", says the petition.
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according to at In the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 70,000 people died of drug overdoses in the United States in 2017, an increase of nearly 10% over the previous year.
A study done for the HIV / AIDS and HIV Research Center at New York University revealed 58 percent among the 86 business leaders surveyed in New York, drug use in the bathrooms of their establishments in the last six months, and 14% found an unconscious person, probably because of the use of drugs.
Last year, Starbucks said it would leave its restroom toilet after the high-profile arrests of two black men who wanted to use the facilities quietly. purchase in Philadelphia sparked controversy.