Chapman's Ice Cream says positive feedback has far outweighed negative after onslaught from anti-vaxxers
Despite an onslaught of hatred from anti-vaccine activists over a pay bump for vaccinated employees, Chapman's Ice Cream says it has in fact received far more positive feedback than negative.
“The positive backlash of this has been overwhelming — 10 to 20 times more positive than negative at this point,” Chapman’s vice-president Ashley Chapman told CP24 Wednesday. “And I really believe that most of Canada is standing behind Chapman’s for trying to do the right thing.”
The furor around the Canadian ice cream company, based in Markdale, Ont., started after the company told its employees that it would give a one dollar per hour raise to vaccinated employees, the logic being that the company was spending roughly the equivalent to frequently test each unvaccinated employee.
“I was having a chat with my mother and we just decided you know what? It's not fair that we're treating the unvaccinated and paying them more essentially than the vaccinated. So we thought, fair enough. We'll cover the test for the unvaccinated to make sure everybody's safe. And everybody else gets a $1 increase.”
Chapman estimates that less than 10 per cent of some 850 workers at the family-run company are unvaccinated. He said the company figured out that it was spending around $40 per week on regular COVID-19 testing for those employees.
The company has not fired anyone for not getting vaccinated. Chapman said his family saw the move as a middle-of-the-road approach to keep workers safe without stigmatizing anyone.
But the company started getting bombarded with hate online after an employee took a screengrab of a notice about the policy and posted it in an anti-vaxxer forum.
Chapman said the response was “shocking.”
“The aggression, the threats, the everything has just been constant,” he said. “The most vile things that you can possibly think of to say to another human being have come out.”
He said that includes messages from people saying they hope the whole family dies of cancer or that their business burns to the ground and they’re left with nothing.
“And those are not the worst of the things that we've been getting,” Chapman said. “Frankly, it's been shocking. These people really should be ashamed of themselves for what they're saying.”
He said once the screengrab was out on the internet, those spewing hate at the company "didn't care about the facts,” including the fact that the company has not forced anyone to get vaccinated.
“We want to take the middle ground in this whole stance to try and give a little compassion to the people that are unvaccinated and not treat them like they're their lepers or something. And the anti-vaxxers have decided that that we should be punished for not doing exactly what they think is right.”
But while some vilified the company because of its policy and called for a boycott, others praised it for taking steps to protect its workers.
“Oh, I think I’ll be adding @Chapmans_Canada ice cream sandwich bars to my grocery order. Yeah. There will be no boycotting of Chapmans here,” one Twitter user wrote.
Others started using the hashtag #StandWithChapmans.
“I hear anti-vaxxers are bullying Chapman's. Where do I buy some of this #ChapmansIceCream ?” another user wrote.
Food processing facilities have seen a high rate of COVID-19 outbreaks throughout the pandemic, often because it is difficult to distance in the workspace. Companies have come under pressure to make their facilities safer for workers.
It's not the first time that the company has received strong praise from the public.
Earlier in the pandemic, Chapman’s offered up ultra-cold freezers to help store the Pfizer vaccine, which requires storage temperatures below -70 Celsius and also offered all of its workers a permanent pay bump.
Toronto Top Stories
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Students trapped inside a classroom with a gunman repeatedly called 911 during this week's attack on a Texas elementary school, including one who pleaded, 'Please send the police now,' as nearly 20 officers waited in the hallway for more than 45 minutes, authorities said Friday.
As Johnny Depp's high-profile libel lawsuit against ex-wife Amber Heard wound down, Heard took her final opportunity on the stand to comment on the hate and backlash she’s endured online during the trial.
A new report says Ottawa, Vancouver and Toronto rank among the top 20 cities around the world when it comes to work-life balance.
Federal Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino will table new firearms legislation on Monday, according to his colleague Justice Minister David Lametti. In an interview with CTV's Question Period that will air on Sunday, Lametti pointed to the advance notice given to the House of Commons, and confirmed the plan is to see the new bill unveiled shortly after MPs return to the Commons on May 30.
An 11-year-old survivor of the Robb Elementary School massacre in Uvalde, Texas, feared the gunman would come back for her so she smeared herself in her friend's blood and played dead.
For 70 years, Andre Hissink has held a grudge against the Dutch government, but this week, the 102-year-old Second World War veteran’s persistence paid off – the Dutch king granted his wish for a rare dual citizenship.
Canada has tapped into its own strategic stockpile of emergency medical supplies -- stored for a national emergency -- to help Ukraine. It has donated over 375,000 items of medical equipment and medicines from Canada's strategic stockpile since the invasion by Russia began.
Takotsubo cardiomyopathy, more commonly known as 'broken heart syndrome' or stress-induced cardiomyopathy, is an actual medical condition triggered by severe emotional or physical stress and is different from a heart attack.
After a six-week trial in which Johnny Depp and Amber Heard tore into each other over the nasty details of their short marriage, both sides told a jury the exact same thing Friday -- they want their lives back.
Canada's highest court has ruled that Alexandre Bissonnette, who murdered six people at the Quebec City mosque in 2017, will be eligible for parole after 25 years.
Hydro-Quebec is still struggling to restore power to tens of thousands of homes left without electricity, six days after deadly storms hit in Quebec and Ontario.
Quebec Premier François Legault may not have expected quite this type of fallout from Bill 96, but he found himself hammered by questions on Thursday -- about Quebec independence.
The London Police Service is requesting the public’s help with locating a person of interest after a gun was fired on Richmond Row in the early morning hours of Friday.
A London man is facing impaired-related charges after a vehicle he was driving collided with a gravel truck on Wednesday morning, according to police.
Pat Clifford is the engine that keeps the St. Vincent de Paul Society in Goderich, Ont. running — and it’s for those reasons the soon-to-be 75-year-old has earned the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers.
A man, who was a referee at high school volleyball games in Guelph for more than 30 years, is facing sex assault-related charges.
The Region of Waterloo says there's a high safety risk at a Kitchener encampment and they are working with residents to prepare them for their eventual move.
The Queen Victoria statue in downtown Kitchener is once again clean after it was splashed with red paint earlier this week.
Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) has honoured two people from Sudbury for their rescue efforts during last year's rescue at Totten Mine.
A 54-year-old man is facing several charges in Sudbury, including sexual assault, following an investigation triggered by reports someone was trying to traffic a victim under the age of 16.
There’s an increased police presence around four Toronto schools this morning after a 27-year-old man walking the nearby streets with an air rifle was shot dead by police on Thursday.
As of Friday afternoon, 29,000 Hydro Ottawa customers remain without power in all neighbourhoods of the city.
The principal of a French Catholic high school in Orleans is leaving the school this week, two weeks after students said a dress code enforcement "blitz" left them feeling degraded and humiliated.
Ottawa Public Health is reporting 15 Ottawa residents in hospital because of an active COVID-19 infection on Friday, down from 17 on Thursday.
Windsor police are asking for the public’s help identify a driver who fled after a rollover crash.
A local musician will be back on stage for the 16th annual 24-Hour Drum Marathon.
Plans are in the works to install Windsor’s first full-size cricket pitch and to improve multi-use trails at a popular community park.
Provincial police are searching for a missing senior who went for a walk with his two dogs on trails behind his home in Springwater Township Thursday afternoon.
On the final day of the Paul Sadlon sexual assault trial, the defence called the complainant's allegations "straight out lies" and "not believable at all."
Former Simcoe County Warden Gerry Marshall has thrown his hat into the ring to become Barrie's 47th mayor.
A lawyer for families of victims killed in the Nova Scotia mass shooting says an 18-hour delay in finding five bodies of those murdered is a sign of "deficient" policing.
The RCMP is trying to determine who was driving a car near the scene of a double-homicide in Dieppe, N.B., in September 2019.
'We just want to stay': N.S. family struggling to find affordable home may be forced to leave the province
A Nova Scotia family may be forced to leave the province due to the lack of affordable housing units on the market today.
Temperatures are rising in Calgary and workers who help make sure pets are kept safe from harm say residents need to be aware of the risks that come with the change of seasons.
Alberta Parks has closed a section of Fish Creek Provincial Park in the city's southeast after aggressive coyotes attacked a dog and its owner.
Calgary Flames fans are still coming to terms with a playoff series loss to the Edmonton Oilers Thursday night in a game that saw both controversy and heartbreak following a Connor McDavid overtime goal.
Winnipeg police are telling people to find an alternate route this afternoon as they are investigating a fatal crash near the St. Boniface Industrial Park.
Fifty-eight-year-old Vivian Ketchum is set to receive her high school diploma at a graduation ceremony at the University of Winnipeg next month. It is a moment that is decades in the making.
Manitoba RCMP said nobody was injured after a semi-truck hauling cheese on the Trans-Canada Highway caught fire Thursday night.
Vancouver police are investigating a double stabbing they say happened at an apartment building in Kitsilano Friday morning.
Multiple drivers ran over a firefighting hose in South Vancouver on Friday, impacting an already tense effort to douse the flames at a two-alarm house fire.
Crossword-loving grandma who thought she won $5,000 realized her lotto prize was actually a lot larger
A recent lottery winner excitedly told her daughter she was suddenly $5,000 richer. She was wrong.
A 19-year-old man is in police custody after a shooting near Rogers Place after an Edmonton Oilers viewing party ended Thursday evening.
Ground was officially broken on Edmonton's Valley Line West LRT route on Friday.
The province officially started or resumed work on 300 highway projects Friday – worth a total of $1.4 billion – but a shortage of workers and the high cost of materials will have an impact.