Knitters lay down needles following legion's request
Published Tuesday, November 6, 2012 6:44PM AST
Last Updated Friday, November 9, 2012 12:20PM AST
A Fredericton knitting group has put down their needles following a formal request from the Royal Canadian Legion.
The group, based out of a knitting supply store in the city, had been knitting woolen poppies for almost two weeks and distributing them to people in return for a $5 donation.
The group had pledged to give every dollar from the project to the Royal Canadian Legion. However, the legion doesn’t support the project.
“As far as we’re concerned, it’s an infringement of our poppy trademark,” says Paul Poirier, president of the New Brunswick command of the Royal Canadian Legion.
A representative formally asked the group to stop distributing the poppies Monday and storeowner Trish Campbell complied.
“She was very genuine, I think, and her thoughts are sincere and so on and so forth,” says legion member Daryl Alward.
“She…showed remorse towards it and I think that she appreciated it very much that we were genuine and she was genuine.”
The knitting group defused the situation Monday night after it agreed to end the poppy campaign, which sparked controversy last week.
“We understand the legion’s stance on the matter,” says Campbell. “It’s a shame that we couldn’t have come to an agreement. We all felt really proud about the money we were raising for the legion, so it’s a bit disheartening.”
The group raised roughly $800 from the project and received requests for the woolen creations from across the country and even in the U.S.
While under scrutiny from the legion, the knitters have received a flood of support, for which Campbell says they are grateful.
“We’re very proud of the support that we’ve had across the country and it just makes it clear that it’s time for a change,” she says. “It’s time to look at things differently.”
While the knitters won’t be distributing the poppies anymore, they say they likely won’t stop making them to give away as gifts.
As for the money raised from the project, the legion is looking into whether it can accept it.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Andy Campbell