Throughout the Couche-Tard family, the opportunity to build stronger local communities contributes to the creation of great workplaces. We strive to be a good corporate citizen by improving the quality of life in the communities in which we do business, helping people and encouraging families and children. It is our honour to express our commitment to community in purposeful, practical and powerful ways. Here are a few of the many initiatives implemented in our business units:
Operations Freeze and Heat. In Ontario, Canada, the Positive Ticketing youth engagement initiative (Operation Freeze and Operation Heat) provides coupons for free beverages to the local police forces. Since the inception of this initiative in 2007, more than 1.1 million Operation Freeze and Operation Heat coupons have been strategically issued by police officers to recognize and motivate Ontario’s youth for positive behavior.
AMBER Alerts. In partnership with the Provincial Police Forces in Ontario, Manitoba, Alberta and British Columbia in Canada, AMBER Alerts will now appear on the LCD screens in Mac’s Convenience Stores across Ontario and Western Canada to engage the public as quickly as possible in the event of child abductions.
In Ontario, as part of our strong partnership with Crime Stoppers, we have provided support in bringing awareness to the growing issue of contraband tobacco. We remind Ontarians that illegal cigarettes help fund organized crime, making our communities less safe, and we encourage them to report any criminal activity they see.
Being a responsible retailer of age-restricted products such as tobacco, alcohol and lottery tickets is deeply ingrained in the DNA of the Couche-Tard family.
Our Circle K stores have been an industry leader and the first US convenience store retailer to move all tobacco products behind the counter, out of the reach of underage buyers. Circle K was also the first retailer to adopt the use of electronic age verifiers in all its stores. All Couche-Tard employees receive training in the sale of age-restricted products (including, in the US, materials from the national “We Card” coalition for responsible retailing) and every store receives signage and other materials aimed at deterring under-aged buyers. Circle K’s policy is to ask for proper identification from anyone who looks 30 or younger.
In addition, Circle K has an extremely high pass rate for audits by the US Food and Drug Administration and voluntarily complies with over 40 States’ Attorneys General. In addition to its policies and procedures on restricted sales, Circle K has retained an external auditing company to be a “secret shopper” in its stores to assure that employees comply with all laws prohibiting the sale of tobacco products to underage customers.
Working with law enforcement to create a safer shopping environment for our customers and a safer work environment for our employees, Circle K Arizona has launched a “Crime Busters” social media program that enlists the community to help solve crime and ID suspects by posting surveillance pictures to Facebook from crimes committed in our stores.