Nova Scotia mall denies kicking out woman for saying 'Merry Christmas'
Published Tuesday, December 16, 2014 9:18AM EST
A fundraising drive for a minor hockey team in Sydney, N.S. has caused an online fuss after one of the parents says she was kicked out of a mall for saying "Merry Christmas.” Mall management disputes the claim and says there's more to the story.
Janet Parsons says she bought an iPad to be raffled off as a fundraiser for her son's hockey team and got a licence to sell tickets at the Mayflower Mall in Sydney.
While selling tickets over the weekend with three members of the team, Parsons claims she was approached by a mall maintenance worker with a letter reminding her that they were not allowed to solicit shoppers. But she says they weren't soliciting.
“The last thing that I said was 'Merry Christmas.' So I said, 'Are we allowed to say Merry Christmas to people?' and he said, 'No,' and ripped the letter up and threw it in the garbage," she told CTV Atlantic.
Parsons feels mall staff could have handled the situation much better. Because her son and team members were asked to leave, she says they missed out on ticket sales, which hurts the whole team.
"The whole purpose of us donating the iPad is for the team to make money," she said.
Mall management says they welcome non-profit groups fundraising at the shopping centre. Mall manager Greg Morrison says the mall does ask people not to be aggressive when selling tickets, and that's the only restriction.
He says the incident is being investigated but asserts that it is not true that Parsons and the players were asked to leave because they said "Merry Christmas."
"That is absolutely not the truth here. We would never do that. We would never kick anyone out of the shopping centre that would say ‘Merry Christmas’," says Morrison.
With the incident becoming a hot topic of conversation on social media sites, the Mayflower Mall released a statement on its Facebook page explaining its position (see below).
While mall management continues to investigate what happened, Parsons says she has filed a complaint with police.
With a report from CTV Atlantic's Kyle Moore