The Employee Action & Rights Network (EARN) staged an overnight sit-in Saturday at three B.C. Mac's store locations to support a campaign to bring back 'working alone' safety regulations meant to protect overnight staff working at gas stations and retail stores.
The safety regulation, commonly known as Grant’s Law, was named after Grant De Patie, a young Maple Ridge gas station attendant who was dragged to his death trying to prevent a robbery in 2005.
The law initially required late-night workers to either be physically separated from the public with a locked door or to work in pairs.
But the regulation was changed in 2012, giving employers a third option: requiring time lock safes for cash, surveillance systems, personal emergency transmitters and regular security audits.
Workers still not safe
At the Saturday Mac's sit-in EARN's Alanna Mulholland told reporters it isn't working.
"The third option is an emergency button which could go anywhere to their boss who could be sleeping and it's still not safe for workers," she said.
"There have been a series of attacks even within the last year which makes it unsafe for workers to be on their own. There's no way to call for backup. There's no time for them to be calling the police on their own."
Mulholland says EARN wants the law restored so it's as strong as it once was.