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Gimli store yanks 'Gay Away' gag gift

A Gimli dollar store pulled a gag gift called Gay Away off its shelves Wednesday after local parents called to complain it was offensive.

The gag product is a candy in a tablet form that purports to cure homosexuality. Part of a product line called Mighty Meds, Gay Away is marketed by a company with the website

Leann, the manager at Deals for Dollars, said the shop pulled the item from shelves Wednesday morning after the first call.

Leann, who wouldn't give her last name, said store staff hadn't ordered the item; it made its way to the shelves when a supply rep for the store added it to the stock.

"We usually order but what happened this time is we let the rep order. We hadn't even known it was there," she said.

Once calls of complaint came into the store, the staff plucked that item from the shelves along with some other items the same rep had also ordered. The store manager described the other offensive items as adult sex gags.


Suspended union director retires

THE province's largest union announced late Wednesday one of two senior staffers it suspended in September has retired.

Bob Dewar, a one-time chief of staff to former premier Gary Doer, had worked for the Manitoba Government and General Employees Union for 23 years. He had served as the union's director of operations since 2003.

The MGEU has posted a four-sentence statement announcing the retirement on its website.

In a brief telephone interview, union president Michelle Gawronsky refused to say whether Dewar had received a buyout, citing privacy concerns.

Local union activists were surprised and shocked when they heard this fall that Dewar and Bruce Buckley, another union staffer, had been suspended without pay. The union has never stated its reasons for taking the disciplinary actions, and neither man has spoken to the media.

Buckley also chairs the Manitoba Taxicab Board, which regulates the taxi industry in Winnipeg.

Copies of a grievance Buckley filed over his suspension and a letter of protest he wrote to the union's board of directors were recently leaked to the Free Press.

In the documents, Buckley wrote he had an unblemished record of employment over 23 years with the union and he was suspended without cause.

His future with the union remains unresolved.

Gawronsky said Wednesday evening the matter with respect to Buckley "remains a human resources issue."


Further study for report on $21-M job

COUNCILLORS frustrated with a report that carried a $21-million price tag added to a council agenda at the last minute sent the project back for further study.

The issue involves a long-term joint partnership between the city and development company Genstar to develop a large parcel of vacant land in Transcona.

The project depends on Genstar building a westward extension of Kildare Avenue through the city's former works yard in Transcona, which was the subject of the last-minute addition to council's agenda.

But councillors said the report lacked details and many were concerned when public works chairman Justin Swandel said he didn't understand it and wouldn't remain in council to debate it.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 12, 2013 A18

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