03/02/2016 11:19 EST | Updated 03/02/2016 11:59 EST

Edmonton Mac's Shootings Prompt Alberta Gov't To Inspect Convenience Stores For Safety

"Employers are responsible to take all precautions to ensure their workers are safe."


EDMONTON — The Alberta government says it will inspect hundreds of stand-alone convenience stores and gas bars over the next three months to ensure workers are safe.

Labour Minister Christina Gray says health and safety officers will talk to employers and workers about current legislation related to working alone, workplace violence, paycheque deductions and employing young workers.

During their inspections of about 200 work sites across the province, safety officers will have the authority to write orders on the spot.

Gray says the results of those inspections, along with consultations with industry officials, will help determine the next steps in the review of occupational health and safety and employment standards laws.

Inspections in response to deadly Mac's shootings

The inspections come after two clerks working alone at different Mac's stores in Edmonton were shot dead during robberies on Dec. 18.

Two men in their 20s and a 13-year-old boy have been charged with first-degree murder in the deaths.

"Employers are responsible to take all precautions to ensure their workers are safe, treated fairly and go home to their families at the end of the day, no matter what industry they work in,'' Gray said in a news release Tuesday.

Andrew Klukas, president of the Western Convenience Stores Association, says retailers operate in a challenging environment and their safety and that of the public is very important.

"The Western Convenience Stores Association continues to work with the Alberta government to ensure evidence-based safety measures proven to work in our unique retail environment are in place and accessible to all retailers,'' Klukas said in a news release Tuesday.

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