A coffee shop in Oakland, California, will no longer serve police officers in an effort to promote equal rights.
The Daily Wire reports that last month, Hasta Muerte, a newly opened coffee shop in the community, refused to serve Oakland Sgt. Robert Trevino. The cafe, which opened after a successful Kickstarter campaign, has a mural outside to memorialize Oscar Grant and others killed in police shootings.
The coffee collective announced that it would not be serving cops any longer because having a law enforcement presence “compromises our feeling of physical and emotional safety."
This is a community that feels less safe when cops show up. As a member of that community, Sgt. Trevino said that he was less interested in buying coffee and more interested in finding ways to build trust and establish a relationship with the coffee shop.
“I think their position is very clear that they don’t want the police in there, and I can respect that,” the sergeant in charge of the Oakland Police Academy told the paper. “If they do call the police for any need, we’re going to respond professionally and give them the same level of service as anyone else regardless of their position.”
The Oakland Police Department respects business owners right to serve anyone they choose. OPD along with other community members are reaching out to the business to have constructive dialogue in our efforts to unite our community #UNITE— Oakland Police Dept. (@oaklandpoliceca) March 9, 2018
The Oakland police appear to be committed to the point regardless of the coffee shop's stance and say the force's duty is to provide safety to the community. They have even added Hasta Muerte as an example in its racial diversity training program saying, "it doesn’t matter how people feel about the police, you have to treat everyone equally.”
Meanwhile, the coffee shop is unwavering in its stance although police officer supporters have tried publicly shaming them by submitting low ratings and reviews online. “We need the support of the actual community to keep this place safe, not police. Especially in an area faced by drug sales and abuse, homelessness and toxic masculinity as we see here on this block.”