Hamilton

Should vaccinated customers get a discount? A Niagara gas station tried it, then backed off

A Niagara gas station has removed a discount it was offering to vaccinated customers after backlash from community members.

City heard 'concerns with alleged discrimination' but says it supports vaccination

A Pioneer gas station in Port Colborne, Ont., was offering a $2 discount on car washes and a 10 per cent discount on convenience items for people who had proof they'd received a COVID-19 vaccine. (Mike Kerkdyk/Facebook)

A Niagara gas station has removed a discount it was offering to vaccinated customers after backlash from some community members.

The Pioneer gas station on 599 Main St. W. in Port Colborne had posted a sign offering a $2 discount on car washes and a 10 per cent discount on convenience store items for people who could prove they'd received the COVID-19 vaccine.

The move from the business comes as the third wave continues to cause infections and deaths across the province. It has also forced many businesses to shutter.

The sign sparked outrage on social media.

"Vaccinationed or not this is definitely a human rights issue. Offering people incentives to be vaccinationed is a function of government not the function of an a-----e with a gas station," read one comment posted on Facebook.

"What a bunch of clowns … they'll never see a cent from my household," wrote another user.

The owner of the gas station did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

A city spokesperson said Port Colborne was aware of the situation and heard "concerns with alleged discrimination."

The city wouldn't comment on the gas station specifically. The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario has purview on discrimination complaints.

The spokesperson added the city "supports all public health efforts in slowing the spread of COVID-19, and encourage residents to receive the vaccine when they are eligible to do so."

The Parkland Corporation, which supplies gas to the business, said its team contacted the gas station owner and "rectified the situation" by having the sign changed to offer a discount to everyone.

"We sincerely apologize for this incident and any inconvenience this has caused," the company said in an email.

Clarifications

  • A previous version of the story included a statement from the city that said the Ontario Human Rights Commission takes complaints from the public. It's actually the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario.
    Apr 29, 2021 8:04 AM ET

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Bobby Hristova

Reporter/Editor

Bobby Hristova is a reporter/editor with CBC Hamilton. Email: bobby.hristova@cbc.ca

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