At various points, Councillor Ron Kore can be seen wiping his nose and appearing to cough during a recording of a March 23, 2020 Pelham Town Council meeting. Councillor Lisa Haun is visible behind him on the video conference screen. YOUTUBE

Franchisee who continued to work while exhibiting symptoms of respiratory illness “temporarily removed”

In a statement released Friday, April 24, Sobeys announced that Fonthill store franchisee and Pelham Town Councillor Ron Kore has been removed from his job.

“We have launched an internal investigation and are taking this matter very seriously,” said Jacquelin Weatherbee, Vice President of Communications and Corporate affairs.

“We are working in cooperation with all authorities. Today, we made the decision to temporarily remove the franchisee operator from the Fonthill location. Sobeys will be temporarily operating the store until the investigation is complete.”

Sobeys operates a mixure of corporate-managed and franchise stores. Kore has run the Fonthill franchise for a decade.

“Sobeys was made aware of customer and employee concerns relating to the Fonthill Sobeys franchised store earlier this week,” said Weatherbee. “We take every single complaint and customer question we receive very seriously.”

“We are in the process of following-up with the inquires we received to understand people’s concerns and reassure them that everything has been done to ensure the Sobeys Fonthill location is safe for its customers and employees.”

Kore did not immediately respond to a request for comment. He has declined to comment to numerous local and national news organizations since news of his continuing to work, and attend Pelham Town Council meetings while visible ill, was originally reported by the Voice on Wednesday, April 22.

Weatherbee confirmed to CBC Hamilton that Kore had tested positive for COVID-19, notifying Sobeys of the result on Tuesday, April 21.

“Our customers’ trust means everything to us. We regret the stress the last few days has placed on employees and the Fonthill community,” said Weatherbee.


RELATED: NRPS: No criminal charges




  1. If Mr. Kore was sick with the corona virus on March 23, 2020, and has tested positive on April 21, 2020, the time frame has been four weeks. I doubt now that isolation for only two weeks is enough to corral the virus. Just a question.

  2. Thank you for exposing this guy. As a resident of the niagara region with family near to this store, it is greatly appreciated. Guarenteed I’ll never shop there again myself though as long as he remains the franchisee. Out of principle as much as concern for my health. He doesnt deserve my hard earned money.

  3. It is a great shame that this man did not remove himself from staff and public in general. It is egregious enough if it had turned out that he just had a cold and was coughing/sneezing spreading germs; but unforgivable in that he tested positive for covid and an insult to all those who have died with this virus. What an arrogant selfish man. When was he going to take care of his staff and customers. Where is his civic responsibility. He should be fined at the very least. I don’t understand that he broke all the quarantine rules and nothing/no one seems to be addressing this.

  4. It’s councillor Mike Ciolfi that deserves the attention. He gave his life for the betterment of Pelham. May He Rest In Peace. God Bless Him and his family

  5. there is no excuse for his actions. since March we have heard, if you have any of these respiratory symptoms, stay home , self isolate, snd he obviously didnt listen.

  6. Working spreading the Coronavirus is like having sex knowing you have aids. If Mr. Kore knowingly went to work, his actions are unconscionable and negligent. If walking in a public park constitutes hefty fine, what kind of penalty does his actions bring?

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