North Island – Powell River MP Rachel Blaney received unanimous support for a motion condemning Whole Foods and its owner Jeff Bezos for banning poppies from staff uniforms. Photo contributed

North Island – Powell River MP Rachel Blaney received unanimous support for a motion condemning Whole Foods and its owner Jeff Bezos for banning poppies from staff uniforms. Photo contributed

Whole Foods reverses stance on poppy ban after Parliament passes condemnation

North Island-Powell River MP Rachel Blaney got unanimous support for motion condemning company

  • Nov. 6, 2020 11:30 a.m.

North Island-Powell River MP and NDP Critic for Veterans Affair Rachel Blaney received unanimous support for her motion condemning grocery retailer Whole Foods for its ban on employees wearing poppies on their uniform.

The company, however, later reversed its policy and allows its staff to now wear poppies.

Blaney rose on a point of order Nov. 6 to ask for unanimous consent to introduce a motion stating: “That this House condemn Whole Foods and its owner Jeff Bezos for banning its employees from wearing poppies on their uniform and demand that the policy be reversed immediately.”

The grocery chain, a subsidiary of Amazon (owned by American multi-billionaire Jeff Bezos), sparked outrage when it was revealed that wearing a poppy in honour of Remembrance Day violated the company’s uniform policy and would not be allowed at any of the retail locations including 14 in Canada.

But later on Friday, the company issued a statement saying, “Our new unified dress code policy is intended to create consistency and ensure operation safety across all of our stores. Our intention was never to single out the poppy or to suggest a lack of support for Remembrance Day and the heroes who have bravely served their country. We appreciate the thoughtful feedback we have received from our customers. Given the learnings of today, we are welcoming Team Members to wear the poppy pin in hnour of Remembrance Day. As was previously planned, we will also be observing a moment of silenc eon November 11, as well as making a monetary donation to the Legion Poppy Fund. “

RELATED: Whole Foods criticized for preventing employees from wearing poppies

Before Whole Foods reversed its positon, Blaney said of the earlier poppy pin ban, “This is disheartening and disrespectful – to the employees, to veterans and their families, and to all Canadians.”

Blaney later tweeted out her acknowledgement of the change of heart:

All members participating in the hybrid sitting of the House of Commons granted unanimous consent to hear the motion and subsequently passed it unanimously as well.

“Especially this year when mass public gatherings for Remembrance Day will not occur, everyone should be allowed to wear a poppy for Remembrance Week,” said Blaney. “Thanking those who sacrificed for the freedoms our country stands for isn’t controversial or political. The support from all parties for this motion is evidence of that.”

This story has been updated at 2:55 p.m. Nov. 6 to acknowledge Whole Foods change of position.

p>Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

North Island MLA Michele Babchuk. Photo contributed
COMMENTARY: MLA Michele Babchuk talks the future of forestry

‘These forests are important to every single one of us, myself included’

Dr. Prean Armogam hands over a cheque for $10,000 to Hardy Bay Senior Citizens Society president Rosaline Glynn. The money will be going towards a new roof for the Port Hardy seniors centre. This is the second donation Dr. Armogam has made to the society, giving them $5,000 a little over a year ago. (Tyson Whitney - North Island Gazette)
Doctor donates $10k to Hardy Bay Senior Citizens Society for new roof

This was the second donation Armogam has given to the society

New COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island by local health area for the week of May 30-June 5. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control image)
COVID-19 cases drop again almost everywhere on Vancouver Island

Nanaimo had four new cases last week, down from 22 the week before

Blueprints for the seniors housing project in Port Hardy. (North Island Seniors Housing Foundation photo)
BC Housing declines North Island Seniors Housing Foundation’s proposal to build units

BC Housing will be explaining why exactly the project was declined at a June 18 meeting

An aerial view of the marine oil-spill near Bligh Island in Nootka sound that the Canadian Coast Guard posted in a live social media feed in December. ( Canadian Coast Guard/Facebook)
Oil from vessel that sank in 1968 off Vancouver Island to be removed

DFO hires Florida firm to carefully remove oil from MV Schiedyk in Nootka Sound starting in mid-June

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read