Give up the Ghost

LCBO                     VS.                    convenience store

Some monsters just won’t stay dead. Once again, the possibility of breaking up the LCBO liquor monopoly has risen up like a ghost to haunt Ontario politics, likely as an issue that will loom in the next provincial election.

Fairly recent news in the Hamilton Spectator illustrates some of these recurrent ideas. A similar article from the CBC talks about the same issues, from a slightly wider perspective.

Essentially, the Ontario Convenience Store Association [OCSA] is exposing their theory (and research they paid for) that putting booze onto their shelves will decrease prices for consumers and somehow increase tax revenues for the provincial government.

None of this holds any water (or beer). In Alberta and BC, semi-private alcohol sales models have not succeeded; they have instead shrunk provincial revenues, cost good jobs in exchange for poor ones, and instigated a rise in alcohol-related harms.

The OCSA wants beer and wine on their shelves for one reason: profits. And unfortunately, they are willing to go to whatever lengths necessary to get public and political backing to advance their agenda.

How do you feel about the movement afoot by the OCSA?

Author: Doug Ironside RN

Doug is a Registered Nurse (PHN) with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit.

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