LIVING

'Gay Away' Gimmick Candy At Manitoba Store Offends Parents

12/11/2013 05:50 EST | Updated 02/10/2014 05:59 EST
A novelty item that claims to "cure gayness" has been removed from a store's shelves in Gimli, Man., after parents expressed shock that the product was available there.

Packs of "Gay Away: The original gay pill" were on display alongside other gag products inside the store.

Slogans on the pink package claim that it "cures gayness" and "stops the craving for misbehaving." Inside is a blister pack containing 10 pieces of candy.

But while Gay Away claims to be just a gimmick, Gimli residents like Mona Johnston were not amused.

"It's absolutely not right," Johnson said Wednesday.

"I'm embarrassed, actually, to tell you the truth, that you guys found this in our community…. I don't support this is any way, shape or form."

A parent, who did not want to be named, said his 12-year-old daughter brought a pack of Gay Away home because she had questions about what it was about.

Johnson and others said the product is offensive and could send hurtful messages to the gay and lesbian community.

The store's owner told CBC News on Wednesday afternoon that she has removed the gag item from shelves after receiving calls from concerned parents.

Rachelle Mistelbacher apologized and insisted that her business is still a family store, and the addition of Gay Away was an oversight and an "honest mistake."

Calls to Laughrat, the Toronto-based company that produced Gay Away and other gag items, were not returned on Wednesday.

Also on HuffPost

Celebrities Who Have Come Out As LGBT