Minister's Statement on Gift Card Distribution
Today, Madeleine Meilleur, Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services, issued the following statement on support for residents who lost food because of last week's ice storm:
"Through the action of generous corporate partners, more than $160,000 in gift cards has so-far been distributed in Toronto to those who lost food in the aftermath of the ice storm.
Demand for the cards has been high, and so more cards will be distributed at Toronto-area Ontario Works offices on Thursday, January 2 and Friday January 3, as available.
These offices are open from 8:30-6:30 on January 2 and 8:30-4:30 on January 3.
I want to thank all the involved corporations for their generous donations, and encourage others to consider contributing to this worthwhile effort. To this point, approximately $460,000 has been pledged to the initiative, including provincial matching funds.
I would also like to remind everyone that these gift cards are intended to help those who have lost food and are unable to replace it without financial assistance. This initiative cannot provide gift cards to everyone who lost power, and should be reserved for those facing the most need.
Residents are reminded to first contact their insurance brokers about their coverage and lost food replacement.
Provincial officials have been working with municipalities outside of Toronto to determine the need for a similar initiative. So far interest has been expressed by Durham Region, as well as the cities of Brampton, Guelph and Hamilton, and we are working with them on the best way to begin distribution.
Updates on the initiative and where cards are available will be posted on Ontario.ca/warning.
I'd like to thank all our corporate donors, including: Loblaws, Shoppers Drug Mart, Metro, Sobeys, Bruce Power, Costco, Northland Power, Louie Coppa Family - A Coppa Family Tradition, CUPE Local 416 and the Insurance Bureau of Canada."