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Starbucks opens its first outlet dedicated to hiring deaf baristas in Malaysia

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Starbucks has dedicated one of its outlets in Malaysia to hiring deaf baristas — a first for the company globally.

The outlet in the Bangsar district currently has 10 deaf baristas, and three hearing staff, Starbucks told Mashable on Wednesday.

If you don't know sign language, the baristas are ready to take orders written on menu cards. Each customer is assigned a number, which will flash on a screen when their order is ready.

The Seattle coffee company worked with the Society of Interpreters for the Deaf (SID) in Malaysia to train and hire the newer baristas, it said.

The shift manager at the Bangsar outlet, Muhammad Aizad Bin Ariffin, has been with the company for three years, and was recently promoted.

He said he's working toward enrolling under the company's Coffee Master programme eventually — Starbucks' advanced coffee expert course.

Starbucks has launched other social good initiatives in the past, including a commitment made several years ago to hire military veterans. 

In February, a barista in Virginia made headlines for her gesture to learn American Sign Language to better serve a deaf customer that frequented her outlet. 

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