No Ten Per Cent Shift for Kings County

Jennifer Hoegg
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Coun. Kim MacQuarrie pointed to Blackberries as an example of a non-food local purchase. – Jennifer Hoegg,

Kings County is not getting on board the Canadian Union of Public Employees’ buy local bandwagon.

Coun. Pauline Raven introduced a motion to the committee of the whole meeting recently to ask council to support CUPE’s Ten Per Cent Shift initiative “with a social media campaign aimed at increasing awareness of Kings County residents of the power of shifting spending from non-local to local businesses.”

Coun. Kim MacQuarrie argued against the move, saying CUPE’s policy would hurt local franchisees and is “confrontational and protectionist,” she said.

"I want us to buy local because it's better, not because it's local,” she said.

Coun. Jim Winsor pointed out Raven and MacQuarrie’s positions were not mutually exclusive, but he voted for Raven’s motion.

Councillors Patricia Bishop and Emma Van Rooyen also spoke in favour of the motion.

"I don't think it's about threatening capitalism or beating down on anyone or threatening sponsorships,” Bishop said.

Coun. Bob Best accused Raven of speaking ill of Sobeys and Superstore and said it would threaten sponsorship of sports teams in the Valley. Coun. Raven did not mention the grocery stores in her discussion.

Coun. Wayne Atwater said he would not support the motion because of Winsor’s position.

After lengthy discussion the committee of the whole defeated the motion in a 6-4 vote.

The municipality already has a “buy local” policy of its own.


Organizations: Canadian Union of Public Employees, Sobeys

Geographic location: Kings

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