Andy Jirard takes advantage of the extended Sunday shopping hours during a visit to Walmart early Sunday.
(ROBIN BOOKER/BRANDON SUN)
Joseph Mamuric shops at Home Depot on Sunday morning.
(ROBIN BOOKER/BRANDON SUN)
Shoppers roamed the aisles in Brandon stores early Sunday morning, taking advantage of the new provincial shopping laws that allow stores to open their doors as early as 9 a.m. on Sundays.
Al Rosendaal, of Brandon, was at Home Depot to rent a cement mixer. He was building a small pad on his property, which he was unable to complete on Saturday because of the rain.
Rosendaal said the previous law that prevented him from renting tools or shopping on a Sunday morning didn’t make any sense.
"I believe anyone in business should be able to be open the hours they want to be open. In my opinion the government legislates too many things. Like it’s common sense to wear a seatbelt in a car or a helmet on a motorcycle, but they have to legislate — which to me seems like a waste of time and energy," Rosendaal said.
Searching for leg-bolts for a deck he was building, Nick Vandale was also in Home Depot during the new expanded shopping hours. He believes the new shopping hours are a positive development.
"I think it gives people who work all week a chance to get some of their own stuff done on the weekend," Vandale said.
Michael Humenny, manager of Walmart in Brandon, said allowing stores to open on Sunday morning is long overdue.
"Our customers have been looking for this for quite some time. When we were closed Sunday mornings we would have numerous calls from customers asking when we would be open. So I think this is going to be beneficial to our customers," Humenny said.
Ivan and Diane Odeljan were in Walmart Sunday morning, looking for items to help with their living room remodelling.
They said they love the new shopping hours.
"We don’t like waiting until noon because your day’s half over. It’s nice to be able to get the shopping over with so then we can go home and enjoy the rest of the day," Diane said.
However, Linda Kennedy of Brandon, who attended church at the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witness on Sunday morning, said the new expanded shopping hours is a sad thing.
Kennedy is worried employers will favour employees who work Sunday mornings, which may pressure other people into working and missing church on Sunday mornings.
"I was sorry when shopping opened up at all on Sundays. People should be able to have at least one day of complete leisure and complete rest. There are some people who might not mind, but there are others whose worship will be affected," Kennedy said.
There are provisions in the legislation intended to protect workers who would rather not work the expanded hours, including the right of retail workers to refuse work on Sundays as long as they give their employer at least 14 days notice.
For more information on the legislation, visit manitoba.ca/labour/standards.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition August 7, 2012