An Upper Beach café has received an outpouring of community support after getting threats and abuse from anti-vaxxers.
After their decision to continue enforcing the vaccination mandate after March 14, Black Dog Cafe on Kingston Road has been receiving death threats and hate messages.
The café made the decision to enforce the mandate for the well-being of its staff, but then also closed its dine-in services to protect employees who were shaken by the messages.
The cafe has also received a lot of fake negative reviews which affected the business’s rating, but local supporters were quick to leave positive reviews accompanied with photos of the café’s baked goodies.
Community members noticed the hateful messages and decided to collectively support the café by visiting it and leaving positive reviews.
One review reads “I really love it here. They have great coffee! They prioritize the health and safety of their staff unlike many other establishments. I will always support .”
The support comes after one Facebook user, Mara Cole, wrote to local neighbourhood Facebook group about the horrible behaviour the staff has been treated with.
“I’ve approached Google because the café’s ratings went from 4.7 to 3.5,” she said. “We all collectively as a community complained to Google about the fake ratings. Then Google took them down.”
Derek Ladouceur, a local realtor started a “Rockstar series” initiative to support local businesses by running weekly gift cards contests to those businesses. One of them is a $100 for Black Dog Café.
“All you have to do is go in buy yourself a snack and grab a coffee.”
Black dog Cafe responded on an Instagram post thanking people for their support and donating money to Red Cross Canada.
Black Dog Cafe is not the only east-end business that has been targeted with hate messages since the vaccine mandate was lifted.
Pomarosa on Danforth Avenue has also been targeted with hateful messages and reviews.