Rally Set For Downtown Starbucks Employee

An 8 a.m. rally is planned for Friday morning (July 24) in support of a downtown Starbucks employee.

The barista, Dayshawn — one of the most popular at the Parker Harding Plaza location — has posted on social media that he is the target of continued harassment by one customer. She calls him the “N-word,”and stalked him in the parking lot.

Dayshawn, the Starbucks employee.

Other customers have witnessed what’s happened. Dayshawn said that Starbucks officials have not intervened effectively, not banning her while telling him and co-workers it is their job to serve customers.

Organizers add that the woman harassing Dayshawn is “unstable. The focus is not on her. It is on this: After Dayshawn and his coworkers wrote to corporate Starbucks about this woman, they shrugged him off.

“This is systemic racism, enabled by corporate America. There is no reason he should have been in a hostile working environment like this. They need to answer for it.

“No one inside the local Starbucks is responsible for what Dayshawn has experienced. They have been very supportive of Dayshawn throughout this. The focus is on what we stand for in this town and what we expect of our business models.

“Please wear yellow if you have it, and keep this supportive. Even a sign with a heart will send a message.”


58 responses to “Rally Set For Downtown Starbucks Employee

  1. Adam Vengrow

    clearly this is horrendous, and not allowed to happen, the westport police once notified are taking action. this woman is an animal and should be kicked out of connecticut or more highly likely mentally unstable or has some kind of disability, either way she needs to not be allowed in there and possibly be hospitalized. but for the love of all of this community, there is nobody that doesn’t support Dayshawn. everybody is on his side and agrees, so lets just make sure the rally is one of support and not one that creates a division or illusion of racism or political siding.

  2. Polly Temple


  3. He should file a harassment complaint with the Westport Police Department and seek a restraining order against the criminal.

    • The Starbucks manager should ban the criminal for hate speech against the employee, which is also an affront to customers.

  4. I agree that the point is to show Starbucks corporate and the managers of this local franchise that ignoring racism in Westport will not be tolerated. I look forward to being there and am grateful to you, Dan, for posting.

  5. This is a tragic situation. A woman with what sounds like mental health issues appears to be de-stablizing. Distressingly she is focused on and targeting a Starbucks employee . I wonder if Westport Human Resources or a local NAMI (National Association for Mental Illness) group might be able to provide help and guidance to the staff? If this woman is suffering from mental health issues, both individuals require kindness and support. This reminds me of the public de-stabilization of Kanye West that has been in the news lately. I hope this situation is taken seriously and resolved.

    • Janette Kinnally

      Thank you for posting this. We will be there in support of Dayshawn on Friday and also there to let corporate and the franchise owner know you need to take a stand on this issue as well. You cannot shrug it off. Absolutely horrible.
      And it sounds like this woman needs help from human services or NAMI.

    • Thank you Lis,
      This is so sad at so many levels. Starbuck’s corporate response is pretty much not there. Our Town is supporting this young man, as we should. And the woman whose actions created this situation should be getting some help.

      And to others, please do not use words to describe her such as “animal”. While her actions are disgracefull, she is not. Compassion is needed here.

    • Danielle Alexander

      Thank you, Lis. Yes! This exactly!!

      In regard to individuals with mental health disorders or those participating in hate crimes we *have* to use the system in place. The police *have* to be called every. single. time. and reports have to be filed. Restraining orders must be executed and a paper trail produced proving that the afflicted is causing harm to individuals in the community. This is the only way to protect the victim from the crime and the emotionally disturbed individual from spiraling.

      No one should ever be the victim of this type of behavior, but when they are they must be empowered to use the system that is designed to protect them. Further, that forward thinking *Starbucks*, of all businesses, world perpetuate systemic racism is unconscionable. My heart breaks for Dayshawn.

  6. I don’t know what is more disturbing : this Karen’s behavior and outright manifestation of hate or the behavior of Starbucks management. I will proudly participate in the rally and until Starbucks amends its policy and takes measures to protect Dayshawn, I will not put a foot inside a Starbucks.
    Thanks for posting this

  7. Robin Scarella

    They must ban her. Are they stupid???
    Hate that she is a Westporter. Too bad can’t evict her from town.

  8. Jack Backiel

    The Starbuck’s manger should step up to the plate and ban this woman from the premises! Contact the regional manager and send them this story with the comments. I repeat- Regional Manager

  9. This is disgusting – makes me ashamed for ever having lived in the town of Westport – Shocked that employers are standing by while an employee
    Gets treated like dirt, and even more so that customers have continued to frequent this Starbucks knowing this is happening. If I still lived there, the second I heard that this was going on, they would no longer have my business. I applaud those that are banding together to do something.

  10. Cristina Negrin

    Eyes wide open this is not new behavior in Westport and most “white” communities. I’m glad people are finally talking about it. Black Lives Matter Is working!

    • Adam Vengrow

      See and this is the problem with these stupid comments. It is not common in westport at all!!! Because it is not accepted in westport, guys like dan woog alert and the police are all over it. Nobody supports this. This is not commonplace in westport. Its inaccurate statements like that, that drive people not from here to racially bias this town. Westport gives more to charitable organizations than most towns in the state. The majority of westport is good people. We dont need your comment making this seem like it is westport

      • Richard McArthur

        Haha Adam, guessing you are white. If the “it” you are referring to is racism, I can assure you it is alive and well in Westport (and beyond). It might not always be as overt as what is happening at Starbucks, but ask any person of color who lives here and they will tell you the same. We experience it daily in our schools, our stores, our restaurants. Westport is not a utopian bubble in an otherwise racist world. It’s ignorance like this that slows the pace of change so desperately needed.

  11. It’s heartwarming to see this level of support for Dayshawn. He has served me many times and been nothing but pleasant. While Starbuck’s corporate response is disappointing it’s par for the course.

    I am looking forward to seeing all those posts from Westporters who play quiet parts in the corporatocracy that enables this kind of sad company ambivalence about how they will use their internal power for change. Westport is home to so many executives who have power to make the lives better for line-level, poorly paid, workers like Dayshawn– I’m looking forward to seeing all your posts here.

  12. Michelle Monofrio

    Can you confirm if it is 8am or 10am? I saw something posted elsewhere that it was 10 am.

  13. Michael Pettee

    For the Starbucks manager: it is past time for you to submit a response here.

  14. Jennifer Lussier

    There are laws protecting people with disabilities, which is why Starbucks can’t do anything about this. Should we ban everyone with Tourette Syndrome from every public establishment? You people need to calm down and show more compassion for the disabled.

    • Jennifer — why would “everyone” with Tourette Syndrome be banned from any public establishment? I ask because there are several members of my family with TS, as well as others I know, and i can’t think of any reason to ban them from anywhere. Perhaps you should learn something about TS before making such comments.

    • Jennifer, of course there are laws to protect individuals with disabilities (from discrimination… against THEM)… But those laws are NOT intended to protect individuals who engage in hate speech against others… Hate speech often leads to hate CRIMES… And no, DayShawn should NOT have to wait until a hate crime is actually committed against him… At which point a response is TOO LATE… The time to act (to publicly make a stand) is NOW… BEFORE a hate crime is actually committed… And even if you think a hate crime is unlikely in this situation, taking the chance you are wrong is NOT a realistic option…

    • Bill Strittmatter

      I know very little about Tourette’s, or if the individual engaging in the cited behavior has it, but if she does, whatever she is saying is involuntary and may not have anything to do with how she feels. From the Tourette Association of America on coprolalia, which is a symptom of Tourette’s exhibited by a minority of patients:

      Particularly embarrassing for some individuals with coprolalia are involuntary outbursts within social contexts, such as racial or ethnic slurs in the company of the very people who would be most offended by such remarks. A minority of people with coprolalia have this particular problem. It is crucial to understand that these words or complex phrases do not necessarily reflect the thoughts, beliefs or opinions of the person with coprolalia.

    • Yes, we should, Ms. Lussier.

  15. Sherri Wolfgang- Peyser

    I would like to add to Lisa Hisgen’s remark. This is tragic all around- but – the woman suffers from MENTAL ILLNESS AND IS NOT STABLE.
    That does NOT mean she is evil, should be institutionalized or thrown out of Westport. It means her brain is not well. Her meds may not be working.PERIOD. Tragically Dayshawn is the recipient of her non rational, ill meaning words and unfortunately her trigger. Please please understand this woman could be your friend, A teacher, neighbor and if her “mental health” was healthy – would be a functioning Westporter Starbuck drinking member of our society.

    This is unfortunate because when this woman is not stable and saying “hate” words– she is not a criminal! She SUFFERS with mental illness. You can not see it- but it comes out in her behavior. I think the Westport Police can help by working with her family or advocate. Dayshawn should be commended for his kindness. Starbucks as a corporation can educate their employees on how to handle these unfortunate situations. Maybe The Westport Police can be supported and work with NAMI.

    But hey Westport- you are better and smarter than this!!

    • Jack Backiel

      I have a question. How do people know so much about this woman to be able to label her as mentally ill?

  16. Eric Buchroeder SHS ‘79

    Let’s not over complicate this sad chain of events. It is not “systemic” racism it is individual hate speech. Advise the woman to stay off the premises or risk being removed by force. Tolerance for Tourette’s or any other disability does not include verbal or physical aggression.

    As to the employee, there is no way to atone for the two evils he has experienced the first from the deranged woman and the second from his employer. The fault lie squarely at Starbuck’s feet.

    • Thanks, Eric,for the most thoughtful and calm response to the whole thing….more of the same thinking could stop hate speech in its tracks. Oh, and one more thought, blacks are not the only recipients of hate speech…they are simply the most recognizable.

    • Richard McArthur

      So a man is the target of hate speech, other citizens have witnessed it and not intervened, his employer has not done anything about it, and their corporate management has ignored it. Interested to hear your definition of systemic, because this sure ticks a lot of boxes.

      • Eric Buchroeder SHS ‘70

        Richard, the tragedy is that “hate speech” and “white privilege” are being used to bludgeon and condemn society at large. We are, or at least should be, a society of individuals who are free to choose and pay the consequences of their choice. It’s my opinion that becoming part of a “mob” regardless of whether it’s a left wing or right wing mob is an individual choice. But individual accountability is sinking faster than the Titanic. Pogo had it right in ‘68.

      • Bill Strittmatter

        Hi Richard. It is possible it is systemic racism. On the other hand, if the woman has Tourette’s, an alternative (and likely) explanation is that witnesses recognize that the woman has an issue that neither can do anything about in the moment and Starbucks understands that they could face legal action if they attempt to ban the woman from their store as the DOJ historically taken the position that that action is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.


        Of course, with a rather intolerant Trump DOJ, maybe they would be more willing to roll back those protections but, frankly, I’m not sure if that would be the road to go down.

        That isn’t to downplay the issue of systemic racism which manifests itself in any number of other ways in Westport starting with exclusionary zoning.

        • Eric Buchroeder SHS ‘70

          Exclusionary zoning is a solid example of systemic racism and avarice. Choosing to live in or to tolerate such an environment is individual racism. What should be of real concern is that the choice was made not to confront the wealth gap but to artificially deflate home values so as to avoid the root cause. The problem is more fundamental than simply building cheap housing so as to maintain your personal affluence. As per Stevie Ray Vaughn “Whatever happened to the Golden Rule?”

  17. Richard McArthur

    I don’t know guys, it’s reportedly been happening for the better part of a year, I guess there are a lot of qualified medical professionals working at and patronizing Starbucks and commenting on this board since they are all diagnosing this woman with TS. Sorry to burst your bubble but the real tragedy is this young man has had to endure it while society has turned its back. A story which repeats itself a thousand times a day in thousands of different communities around the US including right here in Westport.

    • Bill Strittmatter

      I don’t know the woman, nor have I seen the behavior, but it sounds like at least a couple of other commenters here might. No question if it isn’t Tourette’s, the behavior is intolerable.

      However, if it is Tourette’s, irrespective of how inappropriate the behavior might be, for better or worse there probably isn’t a lot that Starbucks or anyone else can do to forcibly change the situation so this could go on indefinitely.

      In the old days, individuals with TS/coprolalia might have been involuntarily institutionalized and/or medicated but those actions have been determined to be an an illegal violation of their rights. People can try to help her, and from comments here it sounds like people may have, but she has to agree.

  18. Apparently, several of you have determined that this woman has Tourette’s and that she is mentally ill.

    1. How many of you have actually seen her in person? Have you observed her behavior? Do you know her personally?

    2. Tourette Syndrome is NOT mental illness. It is caused by a neurological condition. There have been many highly functioning TSers, including Jim Ehrenreich, Billie Eilish, Dan Aykroyd, Howard Hughes, Dr. Samuel Johnson, and possibly Mozart. There are also many not so famous, who carry on their lives, despite their condition

    I feel very bad for Day’Shawn and what he has had to go through. I think that his employers, both local and corporate, should do something about this. He is obviously a popular and valuable employee and they should give him their support. I could not attend the demonstrations today, but I firmly support them.

    • Bill Strittmatter

      But if it is TS/coprolalia, what would you propose Starbucks, locally or nationally, do?

  19. >>what would you propose Starbucks, locally or nationally, do?

    Issue a public statement. What IS their policy?

    Let’s hear it!

  20. Why did you delete peoples you don’t agree with dan? You can’t handle the truth of the matter about Westport and the people who live there? And how they treat anyone who is not in the same social class as them as trash? Or the fact they look at minorities as there pets? And only like them in theory not practice?

    • Fred, what did Dan delete?
      Or, Dan, what did you delete?

      • I deleted an email from “George,” with no last name. I emailed the address he gave — “blacklivesisascam@gmail.com” — saying that all commenters must use full, complete names. I asked for his, and said he could repost the comment himself with a full name, or I would do it for him. The email bounced back — it’s not real.

        Now he has posted this, using a different single name, “Fred.” He used the same bogus email.

        Anyone is welcome to post comments on “06880,” providing they are not libelous, and that they use full, real names. Human beings are welcome. Cowards and trolls are not.

      • Bill Strittmatter

        Hi Fred – if you want your comment (and George’s previous comment) to remain, you sort of need to follow Dan’s comment policy which is:


        As is, your comment will likely be removed as well.

        • Jack Backiel

          Is it possible that Fred is a loser as a human being?

          • Jack Backiel

            I’ll answer my own question. Fred (George) is a loser because what he’s doing is like “stalking” us. Maybe he has low self esteem because all his life he’s been a loser? So I have a challenge for the loser! Comment on what I just wrote WITH YOUR REAL NAME! I dare you, loser!

  21. I do not know this woman and have never witnessed her behavior. I am heartbroken that Day’Shawn has become her target. It must be absolutely terrifying for him and I hope that town authorities QUICKLY come up with a plan to protect him. All of this Tourette Syndrome talk is driving me crazy though. I would like to take a moment to clarify what Tourette Syndrome is. People with Tourette’s have tics. They can be either vocal or motor. The vocal tics can be barks, honks, or sometimes be horrible words the person would NEVER say under normal circumstances. I can be deeply embarrassing to someone with Tourette’s. Their tics are like sneezes. It’s a word/sound/or movement your body makes that you have no control over. Tourette’s does NOT cause you to stalk people. It does NOT cause you to refuse to be served by someone because of their race. It does NOT cause you to throw water on yourself and then blame someone else. I sincerely believe this woman in mentally ill, and I pray she gets help, but let’s not keep calling this Tourette’s. The way she is behaving is NOT caused by Tourette Syndrome. Clear?

  22. Antonio Munoz

    What’s the full name of the racist customer. And from what town she’s from?