OPSEU hails MADD Canada position on alcohol sales in grocery stores

TORONTO, April 13, 2015 /CNW/ - The Ontario Public Service Employees Union is lauding MADD Canada's position that grocery store sales of alcohol be considered only if under LCBO control.

MADD Canada issued a release last week in which CEO Andrew Murie said that "selling alcohol in grocery stores without the oversight of the LCBO amounts to privatization of alcohol sales and that carries a whole host of serious public health and safety risks."

OPSEU supports the "store within a store" concept that MADD is advocating; one where these outlets would be operated by the LCBO and staffed by trained LCBO personnel.

"In the rush to increase revenue from expanded alcohol sales the government appears to have scratched the word 'responsibility' from its vocabulary," Warren (Smokey) Thomas, president of the 130,000-member OPSEU, said today. "MADD is timely with its reminder that alcohol-related harms – including a link to more than 65 medical conditions – costs the public treasury billions of dollars every year."

OPSEU is calling upon the government to halt its plans to hand over licenses to private grocery chains and consult the public on this critical issue.

"Kathleen Wynne conveniently ignores the fact that alcohol is a controlled substance and should be treated like one," Thomas said. "In pushing ahead with this scheme, she must consider the balance between revenue generation, public health and community safety."

In addition to representing about 7,000 LCBO employees, OPSEU also has 50,000 professional and support staff working in Ontario's health care system.

SOURCE Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU)

For further information: Warren (Smokey) Thomas, Tel: 613-329-1931


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