Palace Coffee Company introduces diversity training to staff

Local News

AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — The pandemic has tested many businesses worldwide, Palace Coffee Company is no different. Patrick Burns, Co-owner of Palace Coffee Company, spoke to us about the resiliency they’ve had throughout this time.

“This time period is something we never could’ve planned for. The things that we’ve learned about ourselves and our staff specifically is how willing they are to adapt to change,” said Burns.

Protests have happened all around the country regarding police brutality among minorities. Due to this turmoil, it has left Burns and his team compelled to act.

“We’ve never wanted to be a company that put my personal beliefs or my wife’s personal beliefs on the company itself. We wanted to be a place where everybody felt welcome. We didn’t want to be in the middle of any political strife because we wanted everybody to have a place with us. With this specific thing, this is not a political statement, this is about human rights in general” Burns said.

Burns is planning on enacting a diversity training program to help better assist his staff as well as himself.

“One group that I’ve spoken with, they’re going to send three members of their group to Dallas soon to become to become racial diverse trainers that go into businesses and government agencies that will sit down and talk with us,” said Burns. He said this will be a fluid process as they work out the timeline currently but he’s also happy because he says his staff usually stays with the company for a while so he knows this training will help immensely.

Burns also told us they were able to show support at the NAACP rally by providing supplies to the organization and rally attendees such as hand sanitizer and masks.

We also asked Burns what advice he may give to other business owners that may be looking to make a change as well. He said, “That’s my biggest challenge to business owners is educate yourself. Talk to people and not just your own local community but the community at large. If who you’re talking to only looks like you then your education is going to be limited. So you have to put yourself in a position where you can listen to other people and have an empathy for what they’re going through, and let that truly impact you.”

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