And so another storied piece of Canadiana bites the dust. The skill-testing question, that uniquely Canadian contribution to the fun and excitement that is a lottery game of chance legal contest, has been exposed as discrimination:
Sandra Poitras finally has the GPS navigation device she won earlier this year in Tim Hortons’ Roll Up the Rim to Win contest.
But it took several angry phone calls to get it after she got the skill-testing question wrong twice and was denied her prize.
Poitras’s husband Roger purchased the winning cup on March 17 and asked her to claim the prize.
But Poitras, who has a learning disability, gave the wrong answer to the skill-testing math question contest winners are required by law to answer.
Tim Hortons asked her to resubmit her prize claim but she again answered the question incorrectly.
The doughnut chain told her its policy is to only give customers a second chance to answer the skill-testing question but did eventually gave Poitras the prize.
The skill-testing question, in case you’re wondering, was: 8 x 6 – 5 + 9.
So: because Ms Poitras has a learning disability, it would be unfair – or at any rate, a public relations disaster – for Tim Horton’s to deny her the prize. This presents a dilemma, common to these sorts of cases, that I have yet to see addressed: what if she didn’t have a learning disability? What if she was just dumb? Or what if she was intelligent in most respects, but bad at math? What if she was, as it were, unskilled? Wouldn’t that also be discrimination?
SUPER BONUS PRIZE QUESTION: And since Timmie’s gave her the prize notwithstanding her inability to pass the test, does that not imply that they are, in fact, running a lottery?