Starbucks is offering infertility benefits that make working there the opportunity of a lifetime for those struggling to conceive. In vitro fertilization (IVF) can run $15,000 to $20,000 per cycle, putting the treatment out of reach for many Americans, especially considering that it may take several cycles to achieve a pregnancy.
Reports estimate that nearly 7.5 million women living in the United States have been diagnosed with infertility.
It’s rare that companies offer employees fertility benefits. So, when employers do offer it, people take notice.
Shannon Lagulli was one of those people. She discovered that Starbucks provided IVF coverage and treatment medication to its employees, including part-time staff.
“You think barista, you think an 18-year-old working to go to school, not a 27-year-old woman trying to have a baby,” Lagulli told Anna Werner at CBS2.
Now, Lagulli and her husband are parents to newborn twins.
“They [children] will know how they came about,” Lagulli said. “That if it wasn’t for mommy going to make coffee that they wouldn’t be here.”
According to Starbucks Chief Partner Officer Lucy Helm, the company is proud of its decision to offer these benefits.
“It’s just been part of who we are, that if you work here and you put in the time, you’re going to get the benefits that make you a full partner,” she said.
However, Professor Craig Garthwaite of Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management has his own theory.
“In the end, Starbucks is a for-profit, publicly traded company,” he said. “They’re not doing this out of the goodness of their heart. This is part of a cohesive strategy they have for how to attract and retain talent.”
While Professor Garthwaite may be right, those struggling to conceive don’t care about a company’s ulterior motives. They want to have a baby, and if employers like Starbucks are offering to help pay for fertility treatments, they’re going to work there.