Starbucks to open DC store with focus on sign language

WASHINGTON — Starbucks is about to open its first U.S. location where the primary way of communicating is through sign language.

The so-called “Signing Store” will land in D.C. in October at 6th and H Streets, Northeast, near Gallaudet University.

In a news release, Starbucks said the store format “promotes accessibility and offers employment and career advancement opportunities for deaf and hard of hearing people.”

All employees at the location will be fluent in American Sign Language. Starbucks also said the location will provide an open environment with low glare reflective surfaces to help aid sign language communication.

Starbucks said the location will also offer communication options for customers new to sign language.

While this is the first Starbucks of its kind in the U.S., the company opened a similar store in Malaysia in 2016.

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