Great Glasses still open for business

The central issue in the seven-year run of defying Ontario health regulations was that the chain didn't comply with provincial law that requires an optometrist or physician prescribe glasses or contacts and opticians dispense them.

The Hamilton Spectator
July 5, 2010

Great Glasses still open for business

Hamilton's Great Glasses stores will be open for business today.

But they won't offer free eye tests and they are saying goodbye to the controversial automated testing process that saw founders Bruce and Joanne Bergez found guilty of criminal contempt of court.

The couple was also found to be in civil contempt.

The Bergez business was ordered into receivership by Ontario Superior Court Justice James Turnbull on Friday.

Ontario's Ministry of the Attorney General, College of Optometrists and College of Opticians are jointly recommending Bergez and his wife be imprisoned for two years and one year, respectively.

"We'll be open and we'll be in full compliance with the receiver," said Mike Cairns, who owns the Great Glasses franchise in the Fortinos Plaza at Dundurn and Main streets.

"We're doing everything we're supposed to. We've had an optician available for two months and I have the paperwork showing I own the store available for the receiver."

The central issue in the seven-year run of defying Ontario health regulations was that the chain didn't comply with provincial law that requires an optometrist or physician prescribe glasses or contacts and opticians dispense them.

Great Glasses conducted eye tests on a machine known as the Eyelogic system, which generated a printout that was used as a prescription.

The court order will mean franchise owners like Cairns will have to open files and computer records.

"We'll make everything available. I think it will be a minimum of disruption. I can't lie. I would still like to do this (use the Eyelogic) because it's good for the customer. They don't have to pay so much ($80 to $120) for an eye test."

He added that much of the business he gets is from customers who come in with a prescription.

The Great Glasses store at University Plaza was telling customers there would be no more free eye tests. Staff at the store, plus one on Upper James Street and in Oakville, said they would be open but declined further comment.

http://www.thespec.com/news/local/article/245605--great-glasses-still-open-for-business


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