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TORONTO -- Mac's Convenience Stores Inc. is teaming up with the Canadian Fuels Association, the Ontario Convenience Stores Association (OCSA) and the Canadian Independent Petroleum Marketers Association (CIPMA) on a Toronto Crime Stoppers-led poster ad campaign to educate consumers on the seriousness and implications of gas theft. The campaign also encourages community members to provide information on criminal activity against fuel retailers.
Three poster ads meant to be displayed at gas pumps display mug shots of fictional gas thieves holding up license plates. They also include the Crime Stoppers 1-800-222-TIPS hotline alongside a message that states gas thieves are easy to find. Design firm DDB Toronto created the ads.
Additionally, a video PSA is available on Facebook here.
"Stealing gas is a crime - nothing less - and puts retailers and consumers at risk," stated Sean Sportun, vice chair, Toronto Crime Stoppers. "We've spent the last few months working with our partner associations to bring this campaign to light. We take safety at the pumps very seriously."
The September death of gas station attendant Jayesh Prajapati during a 'gas and dash' theft that turned into a hit and run at a Toronto Shell station reinforced the need for increased vigilance at fuel pumps, according to the announcement. "While this crime has brought the problem of gas theft to the forefront, we hope our campaign will make people inclined to steal gas think again, and encourage law-abiding consumers to be alert and provide information that will help police bring gas thieves to justice," Sportun added.
"We are pleased to be working with police authorities and Crime Stoppers to create awareness that gas theft is a serious crime, to reduce the threat it poses to employees and customers, and to facilitate enforcement actions," stated Peter Boag, President of the Canadian Fuels Association. "This partnership reinforces our industry wide efforts to continuously improve retail site safety and security policies, practices and procedures. Employee and customer safety should never be at risk."
This isn't the first time Mac's has worked with Crime Stoppers. The c-store chain has previously used social media to post surveillance images of suspected thieves, along with a request to contact Crime Stoppers if anyone had information.
Mac's is a subsidiary of Laval, Quebec-based Alimentation Couche-Tard.