High school students will no longer have to line up at FreshCo during lunchtime.
Daniel Broddy, owner-operator of the grocery, said Tuesday that the policy, initially put into effect during COVID-19, is being rescinded.
“FreshCo 100 Mile House is no longer limiting the number of students allowed in our store at any time, including during peak operating times such as lunch breaks,” Broddy said in an email to the Free Press.
The announcement came after the Free Press reached out last week, asking why students were told to wait outside at lunchtime.
The grocery store is a popular destination for the youth, as Peter Skene Ogden Secondary is just across the highway. However, some students interviewed outside the store last week complained about the policy, with Grade 7 students Raven Garland and Arianna Cook, saying it was “dumb,” given that they only have a limited lunch break.
“It should be done away with,” Garland said. “If we have to wait in line, everyone should have to wait in line.”
Tomas Grey, a Grade 9 student, agreed, saying the policy was put in place because “we’re more statistically likely to steal stuff and because some of us aren’t COVID-19 safe.
“It’s annoying because I don’t steal stuff and I don’t have COVID,” he said.
Broddy acknowledged Tuesday that the policy was not “aligned with the level of inclusivity” that he wanted to see in his store.
“While this policy was initially put into effect to help protect the health and safety of all our customers and store teammates by helping ensure social distancing, I recognize that this initiative is not aligned with the level of inclusivity that I strive for in my store,” he said.
“We value all of our customers equally, including our student customers from all schools in the community.”