[Sust-mar] Seeking Volunteer Pesticide Auditors

Chris Benjamin chrisbenjaminwriting at gmail.com
Mon Aug 12 15:07:07 EDT 2013

Position Title: Volunteer Pesticide Auditor

Location: At lawn care retailers near you

Timing: Aug 16 to Sept 19

Volunteers will need to submit final reports on or before September 19.
Volunteers must send expressions of interest no later than August 23.


Ecology Action Centre is seeking dedicated volunteers to be “mystery
shoppers,” visiting retailers that sell lawn care products in Nova Scotia.
The volunteer is on a fact finding mission and will *observe* the
store, *engage
*staff specializing in lawn care, ask questions and assess whether or not
the store is following Nova Scotia’s pesticide rules. Specifically, do they
have the legally required signage? Are they carrying any banned products?
Are the staff knowledgeable of the rules of Nova Scotia’s lawn pesticide
ban? Can they effectively recommend non-toxic lawn care products? The
volunteer will report this information back EAC. The data will be used in
compiling EAC’s third annual report on pesticide retail compliance, which
will be presented to the Nova Scotia Environment department and the media.
These reports are used to give the province an independent analysis of how
well retailers are following the rules, and what changes need to be made
regarding ensuring compliance.


In 2010 Nova Scotia announced it was banning toxic cosmetic or lawn
pesticides. More information on these new rules are available at
The Ecology Action Centre was part of a coalition called Pesticide Free
Nova Scotia, which worked hard for several years recommending such a ban.
The audit serves as a way to ensure that the retail ban lives up to its
province. More on Pesticide Free Nova Scotia is online at
http://www.pesticidefreens.ca/, including the results of previous audits
under “Resources.”


While expertise on pesticides is certainly not necessary, the volunteer
will need to be willing and able to review the rules on what exactly is
banned, and how the new rules work. EAC will provide ample guidance in

The volunteers, after boning up on the banned and accepted products lists
and rules around signage and staff knowledge of products, will need to be a
good, discerning shopper. That is, they will need to be comfortable asking
lots of questions of store staff and have a good eye for detail in the
story. EAC will also provide guidance on methods of “mystery shopping” and
how to report back accurately.

To apply:

Send an email with a brief (1-2 paragraphs) statement of interest and your
phone number to Chris Benjamin, who is coordinating the audit and writing
the report, at chrisbenjaminwriting at gmail.com, no later than August 23.

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