Keep full-service gas stations

Chevron has applied to appeal the zoning bylaw on full-service gas station

The Editor,

For years Coquitlam has had a bylaw requiring gas stations to provide full service. This has been a sense of pride of our city being equality focused and providing employment. I always seek out filling my vehicle within the city of Coquitlam because of this service.

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Now, Chevron has applied to appeal the zoning bylaw on full-service gas stations. This application came before the City’s Universal Access-Ability Advisory Committee on Sept. 5. The application is still before the committee and no decision has been made yet. The people of the Tri-Cities area need to be made aware of this appeal.

Chevron says it cannot afford to hire workers. As well, it believes people will spend more money if they have to enter the store to pay for their gas. And they have issues with the Working Alone law,(established under Grant’s law, based on the lone gas station worker who was killed when a motorist did a gas-and-dash and dragged him to his death and this has been around since 2005) which requires either two workers at night or specific safety precautions to be in place for lone workers.

Gas pumping provides employment for students, immigrants and persons who want to subsidize their income for rent and food, and it provides jobs for seniors making up shortfalls in small pensions.

as prices are high and the cost of barrels of crude oil is low. Someone is getting very rich in the gas industry and now they want to destroy jobs. At a time when we should be focused on building our economy, their approach flies in the face of the need for jobs.

These full-service stations also provide equal accessibility for seniors and people with disabilities. A friend who is wheelchair-dependant, drives and is employed has been informed by Chevron that she can bring a friend to assist her at the pump. This is impossible and ridiculous on so many levels. The loss of full service would be humiliating, dismissive, time-consuming and backwards by decades for people with mobility issues.

I urge everyone to contact the city of Coquitlam and Chevron to voice their concerns about the potential loss of this service.

Sherry Parkin, Coquitlam

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