The below story is the experience of a member in his own words, no edits have been made. Personal identifying information has been removed as this is an on going case in the courts. Thank you G for sharing this!
I entered Canadian Tire in Bedford NS on February 9 th , 2022 without a mask to return an item which I’ve done several times prior to this day. I approached the girl at the return counter who was behind Plexiglas, who also was wearing mask where she said she doesn’t have to serve me because I was without a mask. She asked if I had an exemption which I responded “yes”. I asked to speak to the manager where I could explain my situation, she responds favourably by calling him on the phone. I wanted an opportunity to explain that I just finished 8 treatments of chemotherapy with I have 3 blood clots in my lungs due to the surgery and on high doses of blood thinners, where it is of the utmost to protect my immune system where I haven’t worn the chin diaper in fear of bacteria buildup causing pneumonia or other types of flu and or compromising my immune system.
After the girls up front tried calling several times for the manager and waiting 15+ minutes, suddenly this irate individual appeared on my left and came aggressively towards me white faced, arm stretched out with pointing finger, out of breath and dried mouth demanding I leave the store. He never introduced himself or explained why he was kicking me out of the store which is in violation of the Human Rights Act Part 1 sec.5
I asked him politely to calm down several times saying “calm down let’s have a calm conversation, I want to explain something to you, there’s no need for you to act this way I did nothing to you to treat me this way” where he continued to shake his head from side to side stating no,no,no. I tried to explain to him my situation where he continued with his anger very loudly causing a crowd to gather saying “I don’t care I don’t care”.
He then continued with a very loud demanding voice flailing his arms pointing to door stating “I had three choices do it curb side, on line or wear a mask”. I responded “ok let me think about my options”. As I put my head down to think of my options I didn’t notice that he moved from my left and placed himself behind me to my right.
When I raised my head to ask him how was I supposed to return the item curb side I was surprised to find him standing behind me to my right. As I turned to ask him the question he became more verbally aggressive not giving me a chance to ask how am I to return the item curbside which I was willing to do but was never given the chance.
I then said “I just wanted to return an item where he said” “if you don’t leave the store I’ll escort you out”. I then asked “what do you mean, you will physically grab me and throw me out”??? to which he replied “yes I will”.
As I was turning away from him to pick up my item to leave at the same time saying to him “I don’t think that would be a good idea” which I think sparked the attack, where he immediately grabbed me from behind and proceeded to wrestle me into some kind of arm lock trying to put me on the floor.
I broke free from him and put my hand on his chest pushing him back away from me warning him “not to touch me” which at that point he attempted to try twice once again and twice I held him at bay warning him on his third attempt I had to restrain him by the shirt holding him off stating; “if you try to grab me again I will hurt you and I don’t want to hurt you”.
When I let him go to leave he began to screaming louder saying “he was calling the cops” at which point I turned and picked up my item and began to leave the store when he demanded I not to leave store he was having me charged shouting orders to the girl behind the Plexiglas to call the cops. I told him I will not leave; I will wait in my car.
He then followed me to my car and took a picture of my license plate. I waited for the police and wanted them to press assault charges against him. I never refused to leave nor refuse to wear a mask I simply wanted to explain my situation which he never gave me the opportunity to do.
At all times I was calm and polite given my health situation where I didn’t want any confrontation, contrary to my attacker. Bottom line, I just was hoping to have a civil conversation to explain my health situation with him but he wanted nothing of the kind and as I turned to pick up my item preparing to leave because I had enough of the craziness was when he assaulted me without provocation.
I entered the store as I mentioned above on many occasions without wearing a mask while I was on chemotherapy. When an employee would ask I would politely let them know that I was on chemotherapy and didn’t want to compromise my immune system by breathing CO2 and bacteria/chemicals from the mask which they always replied with positivity. I certainly didn’t want any controversy or upset in my life given my medical condition especially on high doses of blood thinners where a simple cut could turn into an instant disaster.
That situation if I had not been successful in containing Mr. S’ attacks on me, could have led to great bodily harm if I had fallen cutting or bumping my head on the steel railing or the carts that were on my right. As it was given the stress from Mr. S’ attack on me I had a stress headache for 48 hours which wasn’t pleasant.