Sometimes when you go to Tim Hortons for a coffee and a donut, all you want to do is sit for a little while and take a break from your busy life. However, one Ottawa Tim Hortons thinks that people should just get right out after they get their coffee.

The 330 Queen Street Tim Hortons location posted a sign on the front door of their establishment. While the company says the sign has now been removed, it was laying out some hard rules for their customers.*

"This is to inform you that under the trespass to Property Act, that you are not under any circumstances, permitted access to, or be on the premises of, Tim Horton's 330 Queen St Ottawa, ON," the sign read.

It then urges customers to "clear the place within 30 minutes after purchase Tim Horton's product." It warns that anyone staying longer will have the police called on them.

The note concludes by notifying customers that a copy had been sent to the Ottawa Carleton Police. 

The sign was posted on Reddit by u/rockyott on December 12 with the title, "You have 30min to eat that doughnut before Tim's call the police."

The sign was later picked up by CTV Ottawa reporter Christina Succi, who wanted to know what people thought about the message this Tim Hortons was trying to send.

"This sign at @TimHortons on Queen St. in #Ottawa - warns customers they have 30 minutes to eat/drink before they call
@OttawaPolice “who will be instructed to charge you with trespassing” Staff tell me it’s for the ‘safety of customers’ What do you think?" Succi tweeted.

Most of the responses were not happy with the notice and pointed out that it was referring to a specific group of people.

"I’ve been in there for more than 30 minutes for meetings while enduring the “coffee” and “food” but I’d bet big bucks that I would never be the one on whom they called the police. I’m male, white, over 50 and generally conservatively dressed, usually with similar company," wrote @petermac613.

"As a disabled person, I eat slower. This @TimHortons would call the police on me if I don't finish within 30mins. This rule is thereby ableist. It is also classist as they are obviously doing this to deter homeless people from entering their location.
@TimHortons is shameful," wrote @Sarah_Colero

Some other Twitter users pointed out another big problem with the sign, specifically how it says that the same notice was sent to the "Ottawa Carleton Police."

"Also - "Ottawa Carleton Police"? Nothing says credibility like sending a letter to a police force that no longer exists. The OCP was renamed the Ottawa Police in 2001. If they are going to try to sound official at this Tim's they should at least get their name right..." wrote @skycron.

In a statement to Narcity, a Tim Hortons spokesperson said "At Tim Hortons, we strive to provide a welcoming environment for all guests. This includes time to sit and enjoy their purchases."

"The restaurant was attempting to deal with a few isolated issues of extreme loitering," it continued. "But the sign doesn’t reflect our values of creating a welcoming environment, so it has been removed."*

*Cover photo used for illustrative purposes. 


There are stories everywhere. If you spot a newsworthy event in your city, send us a message, photo, or video @NarcityCanada on Twitter and Instagram.


*Editor's Note: This story has been updated. 

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