Starbucks Finds Doing the Right Thing is Hard
By George Anderson
Starbucks’ Howard Schultz says even companies such as his that are trying to do the right thing by offering healthcare coverage to employees have come to the conclusion they simply cannot keep it up.
According to the chairman of Starbucks, the coffee chain has seen its insurance costs increase in the double-digits for four straight years and the escalating costs are not something it or any other company could continue to sustain.
Mr. Schultz was in Washington, D.C. yesterday to meet with Congressional leaders and urge them to put healthcare at the top of their legislative agenda. Other retailers attending the meetings including Jim Sinegal, chief executive of Costco, and Dawn Lepore, president and CEO of drugstore.com.
While he did not endorse specific legislation, Mr. Schultz told The Associated Press that whatever law was finally passed had to achieve a bottom line goal. “Every single American needs to have access to health insurance – full-stop,” he said.
Moderator’s Comment: Do you agree with Howard Schultz that businesses can no longer sustain the annual increases they are seeing related to employee
healthcare? Do you also agree that every single American needs to be insured? What is the answer to his national crisis?
A study by the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation found the average annual premium for family health insurance coverage rose to $10,880 this year. Employers,
on average, were picking up $8,167 of the tab. The amount employees pick up is now $2,713 compared. This figure is up from $1,094 five years ago. –
George Anderson – Moderator
- Crisis in health care brewing, Schultz says – The Associated
Press/The Seattle Times
- Employer Health Benefits 2005 Annual Survey – Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation