Manitoba

Free water bottles too political: school division

A Manitoba school division is turning down an offer of free water bottles for students because the items display a politician's name and party logo.

A Manitoba school division is turning down an offer of free water bottles for students because the items display a politician's name and party logo.

Shelly Glover, Conservative member of Parliament for St. Boniface, wanted to donate an unspecified number of bottles to the Louis Riel School Division.

"What we discovered was that there was some personal information on the bottles," Marilyn Sequire, chairwoman of the school division, told CBC News on Friday. "Because we have a policy that doesn't allow that, we had to regrettably decline."

Sequire said distributing the bottles would have violated division policy.

"It's very simple," Sequire said. "It's just related to our policy that we have that does not allow us to distribute anything in the schools that is overtly, even slightly, political."

Later Friday, Glover told CBC News that she was simply trying to show support for the students. She expressed disappointment with how the issue had been reported.

"When politicians get proactively involved to try to make a difference, I think we should be commended and not have the media turn it into a scandal or some kind of a terrible, negative story," Glover told CBC News.

"I'm going to continue to help these kids. They want the help and I'm going to be there with them."