Poll shows public unease with private pot stores: OPSEU

The union representing LCBO workers is urging Ontario to “just say no to Doug’s” private pot stores.

Warren “Smokey” Thomas, president of OPSEU, released a Nanos Research poll Thursday that found a large majority of Ontarians believe a public retailer of recreational cannabis would do a better job of keeping it away from young people and than a private store.

Most people polled also think a public pot outlet would generate more profits for Ontario’s treasury.

So why would (Premier Doug Ford) allow private companies to cash in on the cannabis business while crying about potential finances,” Thomas said. “You can’t throw away billions in revenue and then cry foul.”

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OPSEU is proposing that cannabis and alcohol be sold out of LCBO stores, a model the Ford government has rejected.

The previous Liberal government planned to sell it out of standalone stores overseen by the LCBO.

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When recreational cannabis becomes legal on Oct. 17, the publicly-owned Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) will offer the product through online sales.

The government is setting up a system of publicly-licensed, privately-operated cannabis stores that are expected to begin selling pot next April.

Attorney General Caroline Mulroney said the government’s model is designed to keep children and communities safe and to combat the illegal cannabis market.

We chose to move ahead with a tightly-regulated private retail system because the public model proposed by the previous Liberal government, and championed by some labour groups, would be incapable of seriously competing with the illegal market,” Mulroney said in a statement.

Thomas is also concerned about a cannabis distribution warehouse set up by OCS at an undisclosed location and contracted out to a third party.

The union leader said there was a commitment from the previous Liberal government that OCS workers would be represented by OPSEU.

An OCS statement says the warehouse’s location remains confidential for security reasons.

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Source:: Toronto Sun – Movies