Minister Mike Ellis needs to address contraband tobacco issue to curb big crime problem in Alberta

EDMONTON, AB, April 5, 2023 /CNW/ – 68 percent of Albertans agree that crime, violence and social disorder are serious, growing problems, according to a recent Leger poll.

Alberta’s convenience store owners are not surprised by this new research, and have been raising alarm about how contraband tobacco has increased crime in Alberta communities.

It is well known that contraband tobacco is often one of many illegal substances that illegal traffickers are selling.

As stated in an rdnewNOW article, the contraband market is run by criminal gangs. It is estimated that there are 175 criminal gangs involved in Canada’s contraband trade, according to the RCMP, and funds from illegal cigarettes fund other illegal activities, including guns, drugs, and human trafficking.

Alberta’s retailers are asking the government to create a Tobacco Prevention Task Force and to include the growing problem of illegal tobacco trafficking into the province’s public safety plans.

“We know this is a big problem and there is no one-size fits all approach, which is why we are asking for the creation of a Task Force where tactics can be studied and research can be done to come up with an Alberta-made strategy to approach contraband tobacco.” – Alberta’s convenience retailers

The Alberta Retailers Coalition (ARC) is an advocacy group with a mission to educate and raise awareness about the rapidly growing problem of contraband tobacco in Alberta.

SOURCE Alberta Retailers Coalition

Minister Mike Ellis needs to address contraband tobacco issue to curb big crime problem in Alberta WeeklyReviewer

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