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Why people are boycotting Starbucks in solidarity with Palestine

File - The Starbucks Workers United logo appears on the shirt of a person attending a hearing in Washington on March 29, 2023. Starbucks sued the union organizing its workers Wednesday, saying a pro-Palestine social media post from a union account early in the Israel-Hamas war angered hundreds of customers and damaged its reputation. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File) File - The Starbucks Workers United logo appears on the shirt of a person attending a hearing in Washington on March 29, 2023. Starbucks sued the union organizing its workers Wednesday, saying a pro-Palestine social media post from a union account early in the Israel-Hamas war angered hundreds of customers and damaged its reputation. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)
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Some Edmontonians in the Palestine community are boycotting Starbucks after the company sued the union organizing its workers for a pro-Palestine post on social media last month.

According to the Associated Press, shortly after the start of the Israel-Gaza conflict, a Starbucks Workers United account tweeted support for Palestine.

Starbucks filed a lawsuit against Workers United over the post, saying it angered hundreds of customers and damaged its reputation.

The group sued Starbucks in response and said the tweet, which was up for about 40 minutes before it was deleted, was posted without the authorization of union leaders.

A woman from Edmonton's Palestinian community said she’s boycotting because she doesn't want to financially contribute to the oppression of Palestinians.

“The Starbucks workers union spoke out in support of Palestine, and Starbucks threatened to sue. Now, we are boycotting. And will continue to boycott any company,” Abraar Alsiwadi said.

For Abraar, her connection to the cause is deeply personal as it’s rooted in her own experience.

“I am a Palestinian from the town of Silwad in the West Bank. I made a promise to myself to do everything in my power to be a voice for my people and to spread as much awareness as I can.”

Abraar believes that boycotting collectively on a large scale can end systemic oppression.

“For example, the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa which actually began as a boycott movement. I also believe that even if it does not make a big difference, that would not stop me from boycotting as it would go against my morals."

Starbucks' statements on the war have expressed sympathy for innocent victims in both Israel and Gaza.

“Starbucks unequivocally condemns acts of hate, terrorism and violence,” Starbucks Executive Vice President Sara Kelly wrote in a letter earlier in October.

With files from the Associated Press

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