Toronto store faces backlash after working with controversial MP Kevin Vuong
A grocery store in Toronto is facing major backlash from people online for associating with MP Kevin Vuong.
The owners of Unboxed Market, Toronto's first zero-waste store, say they've been dealing with a private business issue involving the government for the past two years.
The grocery store says they were told to get help from their local member of parliament, which at the time they thought was Julie Dzerowicz.
Unboxed says Dzerowicz told them to get in touch with Vuong, who could further help them with their issue.
"His appearance at our store today was to provide updates on this ongoing issue, and advise that he still has not received our files from Julie Dzerowicz's office which could further assist in resolving the issue," the store tweeted on Wednesday.
Right before this year's federal election, it was revealed that Vuong had a sexual assault charge dropped back in 2019.
In response, Vuong's campaign was put on pause by the Liberals as they reviewed the claims.
By the time the allegations came forward, it was too late to remove Vuong from the ballot process.
On Wednesday, Vuong tweeted about visiting Unboxed which garnered a lot of reaction from Torontonians.
Absolute pleasure visiting @UnboxedMarketCA today! They are Toronto’s first zero waste store, everything carefully curated to be local, sustainable, and minimize single-use packaging.— Kevin Vuong 😷🇨🇦⚓ (@KevinVuongTO) November 10, 2021
So great to speak with owners Michelle & Luis, hear their journey, and discuss how we can help. pic.twitter.com/rntXI4xkn8
Some people took the opportunity to continue pushing for Vuong's resignation.
An interesting service. Once again, you associate with decent people hoping to shine in their shadow. If you cared about this community, you would resign. And @UnboxedMarketCA, you don't actually support this guy right?— Robert Maisey (@maisey_robert) November 10, 2021
Another person spoke about the harm small businesses may face when associating themselves with the MP.
Kevin, you don’t have a ‘we’. You can buy a bottle of their excellent olive oil and perhaps in a small way that helps, but sadly @UnboxedMarketCA and every other small business will have to weigh if your ‘help’ and association may in fact harm them. They deserve so much more.— mattpark10 (@mattpark10) November 10, 2021
Others were warning Unboxed Market about the consequences of being involved with Vuong.
Unboxed, you are doing such a great job! No wonder this guy wants a picture with you. But I would not associate with him if I were you. He won under false pretenses and refuses to serve and acknowledge his constituents. He's bad business! Resign Kev!— Mau Lopez (@maulopez416) November 10, 2021
Vuong responded to the grocery store's tweet addressing the controversy behind working with him.
The job of govt should be to help create the environment for businesses to thrive. I can’t speak to why the issue has taken this long to be resolved, but our team is working on it so that @UnboxedMarketCA can focus on their business and vision of minimizing single-use packaging. https://t.co/u4oKi88qIu— Kevin Vuong 😷🇨🇦⚓ (@KevinVuongTO) November 10, 2021
Unboxed Market had a few supporters who say they feel bad for what the store now has to deal with due to Vuong's visit.
this is so unfair you're being put in this position— Linda_T 🇨🇦 (@t7_linda) November 10, 2021
The grocery store finalized its statement by making it clear that the visit was strictly for resolving the federal issue they're dealing with.
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