Starbucks Gives U.S. Workers Free Therapy

All employees and eligible family members will have access to as many as 20 free sessions. 

March 18, 2020

SEATTLE—All U.S. employees of Starbucks, plus any eligible family members, will be able to participate in up to 20 therapy sessions annually, Fast Company reports. The change comes as the chain expands its mental health benefits.

“Partners were saying that there’s more we could do as a company to help them around the topic of mental health and well-being,” said Kevin Johnson, Starbucks CEO. “As a leadership team, we said, ‘Let’s figure out what we can do.’”

The company partnered with Lyra Health to connect workers with coaches and/or therapists. The program starts April 6. Starbucks already announced it would give catastrophe pay to employees who miss work because of COVID-19.

Typically, workers would have to average 20 hours weekly or more to qualify for many benefits, such as medical coverage, but Starbucks is opening up the mental health program to all employees. The Lyra partnership gives employees access to a mobile app they can use to find coaches and therapists and schedule appointments.

“We have a responsibility to continue to care for and support our Starbucks partners. They are the heartbeat of Starbucks,” Johnson said.