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LAVAL, Quebec -- Alimentation Couche Tard is testing out a device that sends out high-frequency sound waves to keep young loiterers away from some of its stores, according to a report by CBC News.
The move comes as the City of Montreal is being asked to bring in a citywide ban against the device, known commercially as the Mosquito, the report stated.
The device emits an irritating, high-pitched tone that most people over the age of 25 can't hear, and the company is testing it at a store in Laval.
Company spokesperson Denise Deveau would confirm only a few details about Couche-Tard's experiment with CBC News.
"We are in a testing period with the Mosquito device," said Deveau. "We will test it during the spring and summer, and only then will we be able to make an assessment. We do not really wish to publicize which of our sites have the device."
The Quebec Human and Youth Rights Commission believes the Mosquito violates at least four rights in the Quebec Charter of Rights, among them the right to peaceful assembly and security of the person, according to the report. And a youth center in the Plateau-Mont-Royal borough has already successfully lobbied the City of Montreal not to install the Mosquito on city property.
The company that markets and sells the Mosquito insists the device is safe and effective. The price is around $1,000, with a smaller version available for $550, the report stated.
The Mosquito was developed in Britain and has been in use for several years in Europe.
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