‘Cash mob’ to descend on Chilliwack restaurants targeted by racist emails

Published: March 6, 2013

FRANK LUBA
VANCOUVER DESI

Cash mob

Dale Johnson (left) and Scott McVetty are the organizers of the Chilliwack Cash Mob. A cash mob which is like a flash mob but without the singing and dancing. Submitted photo

Two restaurants in Chilliwack that recently received racially tinged emails will get a response of a different sort Friday.

The Bay Leaf and the Shandhar Hut, which both serve South Asian food, are being targeted by a “cash mob,” which organizer Scott McVetty said is like the social media phenomenon flash mob “but without the singing and dancing.”

McVetty said Wednesday a cash mob combines the flash mob with a shop-local initiative to help business — all through social media such as Facebook and Twitter, and at no cost.

“We organize a group of people and go to the same venue and promise to spend some money,” said McVetty, a realtor who has organized a few other cash mobs with his “partner in crime” Dale Johnson, a web designer.

To avoid long lineups, McVetty is urging participants to go to the two restaurants for lunch, dinner or takeout. Anyone participating will be eligible for door prizes donated by other businesses.

Lucky Gulati of the Bay Leaf is happy about the initiative.

“That thing [the racial comments] was bad,” he said. “The people, they are supporting us, so that is a good thing.”

McVetty and Johnson gave credit for the idea to Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz, who called the pair into her office for a discussion.

Gaetz said she was monitoring social media sites discussing the situation being faced by the two restaurants, which had been told in an anonymous email that Chilliwack doesn’t need “folk from India and Surrey to pollute this city.”

Gaetz noticed that people were “incensed” by the comment and they wanted to respond by doing something like going for lunch. She was already aware of the previous Chilliwack Cash Mob efforts.

McVetty and Johnson didn’t need much persuading.

“I said to her, ‘When negative things happen, people watch to see how you’re going to react,’” recalled McVetty. “Right now, Canada is watching Chilliwack to see how we’ll react.”

Just a day after proposing to visit the two restaurants, the number of Facebook “likes” on the Chilliwack Cash Mob went up by 200 from what had been a stable 420.

“I think we’re in a period of time where you just can’t go out and say whatever you want, do whatever you want,” said McVetty. “There’s freedom of speech, but there’s also decency.”

Gaetz said she was acting on what Chilliwack residents were expressing.

“The community just said, ‘Enough of this,’” said Gaetz. “We certainly want people to know we are open to everyone.

“We’re going to celebrate that by eating food. How can it get any better than that?”

Gaetz is planning to participate in the cash mob.

“You bet,” she said. “It’s a good excuse for a date!”

Cpl. Tammy Hollingsworth, the Chilliwack RCMP spokesman, was also supportive of the cash mob.

“I think it’s great the community is rallying around these people,” said Hollingsworth.

But the RCMP continue to investigate the emails, which were also sent to a taxi company. Police are urging the emails’ author to speak to them.

fluba@theprovince.com
twitter.com/frankluba


Tags: , , , , ,





Featured

Seniors-documentary-Parents

Stricken by her mom’s death, Sikh filmmaker learns ‘to keep moving forward’

LARISSA CHAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Vancouver filmmaker Baljit Sangra’s mother suddenly died after being struck by a car, Sangra was so devastated that she wanted…
Continue Reading »

Royal Wedding

Aga Khan’s eldest son Prince Rahim and his wife Kendra Salwa Spears expecting their first child

VANCOUVER DESI The Aga Khan’s eldest son Prince Rahim and his wife Princess Salwa (Kendra Salwa Spears) are expecting their first child, the spiritual leader…
Continue Reading »

CIVIC ELECTIONS

Surrey mayoral candidates share city visions at first meeting

AMY REID VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — Surrey mayoral candidates met for the city’s first all-candidates meeting Thursday night at SFU. Six of the seven candidates…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Seniors-documentary-Parents

Stricken by her mom’s death, Sikh filmmaker learns ‘to keep moving forward’

LARISSA CHAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI When Vancouver filmmaker Baljit Sangra’s mother suddenly died after being struck by a car, Sangra was so devastated that she wanted…
Continue Reading »

CIVIC ELECTIONS

Surrey mayoral candidates share city visions at first meeting

AMY REID VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — Surrey mayoral candidates met for the city’s first all-candidates meeting Thursday night at SFU. Six of the seven candidates…
Continue Reading »

OTTAWA

Surrey MP Nina Grewal’s account of the shootout in Ottawa

NINA GREWAL SPECIAL TO IANS  When Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper was speaking at about 9.30 a.m. Wednesday in a caucus room of parliament, we…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

student dead

Two dead, including gunman, in school shooting north of Seattle

DOUG ESSER THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MARYSVILLE, Wash. — A student opened fire in a high school cafeteria north of Seattle on Friday, killing at least…
Continue Reading »

attack on Parliament Hill

Ottawa shooter kicked out of Burnaby mosque two years ago

Zehaf-Bibeau was asked to leave the mosque, because he had “gotten a hold of keys and stuff from the mosque, and when he got out…
Continue Reading »

labour laws violation

U.S. company penalized for mistreatment of Indian employees working 122 hours in a week

MICHAEL LIEDTKE THE ASSOCIATED PRESS SAN FRANCISCO – A Silicon Valley company is paying more than $43,000 in back wages and penalties after labour regulators…
Continue Reading »

DESI-SOCCER

Surrey soccer captain played the U-18 national club championship using only one foot

KYLE BENNING SURREY NOW SOUTH SURREY – Kyle Sohi’s perseverance and performance in the 2014 Sport Chek National Club Championships U-18 Cup Final might go…
Continue Reading »

SURREY-FIELD HOCKEY

Barinder Rasode announces plan to develop field hockey pitch in Surrey

Third field at Tamanawis Park would cost approximately $3 million KYLE BENNING SURREY NOW NEWTON – Barinder Rasode and the One Surrey team were at…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Stan Lee-Bollywood

Stan Lee plans Bollywood film on his first Indian superhero

VANCOUVER DESI Stan Lee, the legendary ‘Spiderman’ creator, is reportedly planning his Bollywood entry with a film on his Indian superhero character ‘Chakra: the Invincible’….
Continue Reading »

KANGANA RANAUT

Even my parents think I am weird, says Bollywood ‘Queen’ Kangana Ranaut

HINDUSTAN TIMES Kangana Ranaut has always made unconventional choices, be it her movies or the way she dresses. And the actor says she’s happy the…
Continue Reading »

Happy New Year-Bollywood

Happy New Year: Mandatory ‘formula’ and all those old Bollywood references

HINDUSTAN TIMES Film: Happy New Year Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan, Boman Irani, Sonu Sood, Vivaan Shah, Jackie Shroff Director: Farah Khan…
Continue Reading »