As if we needed another reason to love Starbucks: It’s making a major effort to welcome and support parents and their babies.
If you’re a parent, you’ve probably been here: You’re exhausted and sleep-deprived and all you want from life is a caramel Frappuccino, but you don’t feel like enduring the stares and/or comments you’ll receive if, heaven forbid, your little one needs to cry or nurse while you’re sucking in that sweet life force through a green straw.
… so you endure a sad, sad Frappuccino-less day.
But Starbucks U.K. gets it. It’s collaborating with the National Childbirth Trust to make every Starbucks in the U.K. (that’s 800+ Starbucks) parent-friendly.
The National Childbirth Trust created its Parent Friendly Places Charter to recognize organizations that have committed to welcoming parents and being responsive to parents’ needs.
“We want all of our customers to have a good experience at Starbucks,” Rhys Iley, vice president of operations for Starbucks EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Africa), said in a press release. “And we recognize that parents out on their own with very young children, sometimes for the first time, appreciate some support.”
What does it mean to be “parent-friendly”?
Emergency diapers, help when you need it, and improved store design with parents in mind.
“We know from our members, that many struggle with unwanted attention and comments on their feeding method whether it’s by breast, bottle or in a high chair, when out and about with their baby or child,” Dr. Sarah McMullen, head of research and quality at NCT, said in a press release. “It’s important that parents feel reassured they have the support of staff and won’t be judged.”
Forgot your diaper bag? Need a bottle warmed? Can’t find a seat or need help carrying something? Starbucks’ U.K. staff have now been trained to be there for parents when they need it most: when they’re venti tired and need a break.
I’m a Starbucks fiend and breastfeeding mama who rarely takes her kids out in public because it’s too stressful, so this would be a game-changer for me (and for groggy parents everywhere).
Bravo, Starbucks U.K.
Hopefully this is the start of a corporate trend that will find its way to the States sooner rather than later.