Ice storm food gift cards can't keep up with demand

Hundreds of people remained in line for food gift cards at Golden Mile Employment & Social...

Hundreds of people remained in line for food gift cards at Golden Mile Employment & Social Services, even after the cards had run out. (ERNEST DOROSZUK/Toronto Sun)

Maryam Shah, Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 1:29 AM ET

TORONTO — Tensions ran high when gift cards for people affected by the ice storm ran out at an east-end Toronto location within an hour of its opening Thursday.

An angry crowd — some of whom had been in line for hours — burst through the half-shuttered front entrance of the Golden Mile Employment and Social Services office before staff managed to reorganize them in a single line.

The office opened around 8:30 a.m. and employees announced there were no gift cards shortly before 9:30 a.m.

Many of the hundreds in line were frustrated at the news and did not abandon their spots, hoping gift cards would appear later in the day.

Sandra Farrell, who also spent Tuesday in a lineup for a card, said the supply was "obviously not enough to meet demand and they should know what the demand is."

"Security guards yelling at you, like, 'Go home,’" she said. "It wasn't dealt with very nice."

The gift cards were replenished just before 2 p.m., calming the tense lineup.

Peter Jackson, who is on social assistance and currently looking for work, managed to get a $50 Metro gift card to replace the meat and dairy products he lost in the power outage.


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