By now, many Canadians have heard the stories about Chapters-Indigo refusing patrons entry without masks, even in the cases of written exemptions.
People will raise the defense of it being “their business”, and hence they can impose whatever policies they want. That’s incorrect, as there are human rights legislation that must be followed. Even if breathing isn’t considered a human right, various conditions are. Beyond that, it’s offensive to voters.
But what’s particularly bad about this is that Chapters-Indigo is getting large amounts of tax-payer money while they discriminate against their customers. It seems that boycotting such businesses doesn’t work when Ottawa will just bail them out. But of course, it’s all done in the name of “safety”.
According to the CEWS Registry, Indigo is receiving financial assistance. CEWS stands for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. So it is getting Government (or rather taxpayer) money in order to keep this business going.
One also has to wonder what other programs the company is getting money from, such as CERS, the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy Program.
According to the Office of the Lobbying Commissioner of Canada, Chapters-Indigo received $20.1 million in various subsidies in the fiscal year of 2020. It is expected to get more money in 2021.
Also, keep in mind the thousands of small businesses that there deemed “non essential” and forced to close. Many went under permanently. However, a chain of bookstores like Chapters is considered important enough to bail out. This comes in spite of their blatant discrimination.
While no businesses should have been closed at all, many people would agree that a bookstore is pretty “non-essential” in the grand scheme of things.