TORONTO — A year-long investigation that began as a probe into an alleged Toronto gang has led to more than 100 arrests across Ontario for crimes that include murder, drug trafficking and firearms offences, police said Thursday. Toronto police said the operation — dubbed Project Sunder — dismantled the Eglinton West Crips, which was allegedly involved in criminal activity as far as Thunder Bay, Ont. "The Eglinton West Crips were involved in extensive gun and drug trafficking networks that span the province of Ontario," said Toronto police Deputy Chief Myron Demkiw."These networks are alleged to have trafficked large quantities of narcotics, specifically cocaine and fentanyl, to many communities outside of the Greater Toronto Area."Police said they had made 114 arrests and expected about 800 criminal charges to be laid in the ongoing investigation that began in September 2019. While Toronto police led the probe, the investigation also involved forces in Waterloo, York Region, Peel Region, Durham Region, Thunder Bay, and the provincial police. Chief Supt. Paul Mackey of the Ontario Provincial Police said that collaboration between so many forces was necessary to combat a criminal organization of this size."This particular investigation clearly demonstrates how GTA-based street gangs have influence across Ontario, from Ottawa to Thunder Bay and many places in between," he said."No community is immune. Criminals do not respect jurisdictional boundaries."Police said that officers carried out 141 search warrants over several months. A total of 31 firearms were seized, along with seven kilograms of cocaine, two kilograms of fentanyl, two kilograms of crystal methamphetamine and other street drugs, as well as $300,000 in currency.Deputy Chief Brian Bigras of the York Regional Police said that the size of the seizures was indicative of how widespread and dangerous the alleged gang was."Project Sunder stopped a criminal group in their tracks, a criminal group that clearly had tentacles that spread across the province of Ontario," saidThis report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 29, 2020. John Chidley-Hill, The Canadian Press
Six suspected drug labs in Richmond were put out of commission Wednesday in simultaneous police raids carried out by Richmond RCMP and Delta police.Richmond Mounties hit three homes in western Richmond suspected of producing synthetic drugs.In a separate investigation, Delta police officers targeted three commercial properties in eastern Richmond under the Cannabis Act.Details about the types of drugs being produced have not been released — but in the case of the Richmond RCMP raids, volatile chemicals were seized."These types of investigations pose a significant danger to our officers and to our community as a whole," says Sgt. Gene Hsieh of the Richmond Organized Crime Unit. "Some of the chemicals are highly unstable, and it will take some time to render these sites safe before continuing our investigation."The Clandestine Laboratory Team of the RCMP was called in to assist with Wednesday's raids.At least two dozen officers were involved.Several investigators in hazmat suits could be seen entering one of the homes, located on Comstock Road.The other house, on Blundell Road, was sealed Wednesday and entered by investigators on Thursday. Richmond RCMP has asked that the addresses be withheld.'Major investigations' led to raidsThe Delta police operation hit two commercial properties on Westminster Highway and another on Sidaway Road, all three in rural areas of eastern Richmond.The Lower Mainland Emergency Response Team and the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit assisted the Delta police-led operation.Delta police spokesperson Cris Leykauf confirms a number of suspects were arrested, but charges have yet to be laid.Leykauf says warrants were executed at the three commercial locations after a "major investigation."Richmond RCMP state its raids on the three other locations "were part of an eight-month targeted investigation into suspected synthetic drug production across the city."6 drug labs discovered in Richmond since JulyThe six suspected drug production operations shut down Wednesday follow another drug lab discovery during the summer.A house on Calder Court in Richmond burst into flames in July. RCMP search warrant documents obtained by CBC News revealed a massive drug lab was uncovered and at least $1.1 million in "shatter," a potent marijuana derivative, was found. It was one of the biggest seizures of illicitly-produced shatter in Canadian history.The search documents stated the blast and fire were likely sparked by 15 illegally-wired ovens and cannisters of butane and propane used to produce shatter.Police officials refuse to say if the latest Richmond raids are related to the discovery of the shatter production facility.Both forces say their investigations are ongoing.CBC Vancouver's Impact Team investigates and reports on stories that impact people in their local community and strives to hold individuals, institutions and organizations to account. If you have a story for us, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
An outbreak at a church in Blenheim is now connected with an estimated 30 COVID-19 cases in Chatham-Kent.In a morning briefing Thursday, Chatham-Kent medical officer of health Dr. David Colby said about 230 people associated with the church outbreak were isolating. By the end of Thursday, Colby said 450 people in total were isolating across the region, though it's not clear how many more are associated with the church.Colby said that an infected individual who attended a Chatham blood donor clinic earlier this month was a member of the Blenheim Word of Life Church. The health unit has issued an exposure notice to 150 others who were at the clinic.The region's three hospitalized cases are also from the church's outbreak, the health unit said. Colby added that a congregant living outbreak in Chatham is also linked to the church outbreak. He called the church outbreak "rather large and unwieldy.""It's a question of when you decide to stop associating cases with the original source, and rather just saying that they're due to a close contact with an active case," said Colby. When asked where other cases in the community are coming from, he compared the church outbreak to a tree's roots."Ultimately, the branches of the tree lead back to the church root," said Colby. But, he said, the further those cases get from the root, the more likely the public health unit will call them "close contacts to active cases.""We continue to monitor and isolate with regard to that outbreak," Colby said. Blenheim is a small town in the Chatham-Kent region.The church posted on Facebook early last week that a member of its "church families" had tested positive for COVID-19. In a Facebook message to CBC News Thursday, pastor Tim Joyce said "We would very much appreciate that you would respect our privacy at this time." He continued to say, "We are still in the middle of this situation. When it's done and over we will release a statement. Right now we are supporting one another praying for one another and our community." The church has since closed its doors for two weeks.Colby said that in contact tracing interviews, members of the church said that they had been following physical distancing guidelines."They were respecting physical distancing rules and so forth," Colby said. "But I note that it's a storefront church that is very small inside and we know that crowding can make a difference and that singing can make a difference."Colby also said the health unit is not looking at new regulations for churches in the region, and that the case appeared to be unique among churches."Obviously there was a breakdown in precautions somewhere along the line. So we're going to start from square one and re-emphasize all of the precautions," he added.'It is very scary'Owner of More Than TZ Customizing Sami Ibari, whose shop is located right beside the church in the downtown strip, told CBC News Thursday that the number of cases and those self-isolating as a result of the community outbreak is alarming. "It is very scary. We live in very close, tight community here and when you see it knocking at your door it make you very worried about what's going on," he said."I wish there's no harm will happen to that people who did have that disease and I wish that people around this area to be more concerned and take more precautions."He said with so many people in one room, the precautions are maybe "not enough." But the fact that the church is closed and the health unit is on top of the situation makes him feel at ease. "What happened here [is] like a big awakening for other people around us to [take] more precautions."
The Arizona Coyotes renounced their rights Thursday to their top 2020 draft pick after saying they learned more about his bullying of a Black classmate with developmental disabilities four years ago. The team parted ways with Mitchell Miller after taking criticism for selecting him in the fourth round earlier this month despite knowing of his 2016 assault conviction. Arizona acknowledged it knew about the incident when it selected Miller 111th overall.
EDMONTON — Alberta’s top doctor says the province will be removing two symptoms from its COVID-19 checklist for people under the age of 18 that required mandatory isolation.Dr. Deena Hinshaw says they include runny nose and sore throat.She says starting Monday, if someone under the age of 18 has one of those symptoms they are encouraged to monitor themselves for 24 hours. If symptoms improve, they don't need to get tested and can return to normal activity, including attending school or participating in sport groups.Hinshaw says the change to the checklist follows similar ones made in British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec. She says more than 3,400 children and youth who were tested last week for COVID-19 reported having a sore throat, but more than 700 of them had a sore throat as their only symptom, and less than one per cent of their tests came back positive.Alberta reported 477 new COVID-19 cases in Thursday’s update and five new deaths.There are 4,921 active cases with 130 in hospital and 18 in intensive care.Hinshaw also reminded Albertans to practise cautious social distancing this Halloween weekend."Unfortunately, after every holiday during the pandemic, we have seen a rise in the number of cases one to two weeks later," she said."This weekend, I am asking Albertans as clearly and strongly as possible to please be wise and be safe."Hinshaw said this is not the year for large Halloween parties and noted that Calgary and Edmonton have social gatherings limited to 15 people."Eat candy, brush your teeth, watch your favourite scary movie, spend time with your household and your cohorts."This report by the Canadian Press was first published on Oct. 29, 2020. The Canadian Press
A former U.S. embassy worker in Mexico is believed to have drugged and sexually assaulted as many as two dozen women, filming many of them while they were unconscious, according to federal prosecutors. Brian Jeffrey Raymond was arrested earlier this month in San Diego, where he had moved after leaving his job in June. The FBI started investigating after Mexican police responding to a call May 31 found a woman naked and screaming from the balcony of an embassy-leased apartment in Mexico City.
Sindika Dokolo, the Congolese businessman and art collector husband of Angolan billionaire Isabel dos Santos, has died in a diving accident in Dubai, a colleague and two family members said on Friday. Dokolo and dos Santos, the daughter of Jose Eduardo dos Santos who ruled Angola for 38 years until 2017, faced corruption charges, including allegations that they steered $1 billion in state funds to companies in which they held stakes during her father's presidency. Dokolo and Isabel dos Santos have both denied wrongdoing.
The era of the plastic shopping bag has come to a close in Nova Scotia.A provincewide ban that came into effect Friday means businesses can no longer provide single-use plastic bags at the checkout, so customers should get in the habit of carrying reusable bags.CBC Radio's Information Morning spoke with Kirk Symonds of the Halifax Regional Municipality's solid waste resources department about the change. Here's what you need to know: Q: Why is this ban happening now?Nova Scotia passed the Plastic Bags Reduction Act this time last year. Politicians said they wanted to give retailers and the public time to prepare.Grocery chains like Sobeys have already transitioned to paper and reusable bags, but the ban applies to all businesses — not just grocery stores.The province says the ban is to encourage waste reduction at the source, and help keep plastic out of the environment and landfills.Q: Will there be any plastic bags left anywhere?Yes. The province has outlined 13 examples of exemptions to the ban where plastic bags are still accepted. These include bags for loose bulk items like fruit, vegetables, nuts, grains or candy, and food or baked goods that aren't prepackaged.Products that can't fit in a reusable bag are also on the list, as are bags used to transport dry cleaning, flyers and mail, and packaged liquids that might leak.Symonds says there will still be "lots of plastic bags" in people's lives, but the idea is to cut down as much as possible.For a full list of the exceptions click here.Q: What am I going to use instead?The easiest answer is to grab some reusable shopping bags, says Symonds.Some businesses might offer reusable or paper bags to their customers, but it is not a requirement. They can also decide whether to charge a fee for bags they provide and what they do with that money.The province says shoppers won't spot any bags made from biodegradable or compostable plastic. Businesses aren't allowed to offer these since they contaminate recycling streams and don't decompose properly in compost facilities.Q: What will I line my garbage cans with now?For years, many Nova Scotians have had a stash of plastic shopping bags used to line small garbage cans around the house.Although those plastic bags won't be around going forward, Symonds says some people might decide they don't need to line every bin. "I'm intimately familiar with what folks throw out. Garbage is not as messy as it used to be now that we compost most of our food," he says.For those who still want to use plastic bags, Symonds says they can always buy packages of bags designed to fit their garbage cans. Q: What if businesses still have plastic shopping bags they can't give out?The province says businesses can recycle the bags, sell them, or ship them to another business location in a province without a plastic bag ban. They can also donate them to a charity, like a food bank, that can still use plastic bags when serving clients.Q: What about household garbage bags? Are they still allowed?Yes. Symonds says Nova Scotians' plastic garbage and recycling bags have not changed.Q: What is the rest of the country doing?The federal government has said single-use plastic items like grocery bags, straws and cutlery will be covered by a national ban coming into effect next year. The regulations to introduce the ban will be finalized by the end of 2021.P.E.I. was the first in the country to ban plastic shopping bags last year. They were followed this month by Newfoundland and Labrador.MORE TOP STORIES
First lady Melania Trump made her first joint campaign appearance of the year with her husband, President Donald Trump, at a rally in Florida, a state all but essential to the Republican's pathway to another term. (Oct. 29)
BOSTON — Travis Roy, the Boston University hockey player who was paralyzed 11 seconds into his first college shift and went on to become an advocate for spinal cord injury survivors both in and outside the sports world, has died. He was 45. His death was confirmed by the BU athletic department and the Travis Roy Foundation. “It is with heavy hearts that we mourn the passing of Travis Roy,” the school said in a statement. “His story is the epitome of inspiration and courage, and he was a role model and a hero to so many people. “Travis' work and dedication toward helping fellow spinal cord-injury survivors is nothing short of amazing. His legacy will last forever, not just within the Boston University community, but with the countless lives he has impacted across the country." Roy was a 20-year-old freshman making his debut for the reigning NCAA champions in the 1995-96 season opener when he crashed headfirst into the boards after checking a North Dakota opponent. The accident left him a quadriplegic. From his wheelchair, he gave as many as 40 motivational speeches a year. The message he shared: Do the best with what you have and don’t dwell on your misfortune. “I like to say the first 20 years I had a life that was full of passion and the last 20 I’ve had a life full of purpose,” he said in an interview with The Associated Press shortly after turning 40. “The dream is to have both at the same time, but I’m fortunate. I’ll take either one.” Since he created the Travis Roy Foundation in 1997, it has raised more than $9 million — half for research, and half to provide equipment for those with spinal cord injuries. Roy, who was able to control the joystick that manoeuvred his chair, regained little movement after the injury and had no feeling below the middle of his chest. “I just thought the research would move along and by the time I was 40 I might have a chance of some normalcy again,” Roy told the AP in 2015, “some kids and a wife and not living with 24-hour home care anymore.” The hockey world mourned his passing on Thursday, with the NHL calling Roy “a special man who responded to his devastating injury by dedicating himself to serving others.” Former Bruins star and current team president Cam Neely also shared his condolences. “Travis Roy was the ultimate symbol of determination and courage,” Neely said. “The impact that Travis had on the New England hockey community is immeasurable, and his relentless advocacy for spinal cord research was inspiring.” Ray Bourque, another ex-Bruin and Hockey Hall of Famer, said he and his wife were “honoured to have known such a great man who helped so many others.” “The warmth, strength, and resiliency he exhibited in the face of tragedy set him apart,” Boston Red Sox President and CEO Sam Kennedy said. “His mantra was never to take anything for granted, and his message resonates stronger than ever with all of us at the Red Sox.” Roy's work as a fundraiser and motivational speaker combined with his persistent optimism to make him a hero to other victims of spinal cord injuries. “Travis Roy, you were my friend, mentor, role model and the most positive person I knew,” Jack Jablonski, a Minnesota high school hockey star who was also left paralyzed after a hockey collision, said on Twitter. “You have forever changed the SCI and hockey community. Thank you for taking the time to get to know each other." Denna Laing, who was paralyzed during an exhibition before the 2016 NHL Winter Classic, also tweeted her thanks. “Travis did so many little things and big things for so many people,” she wrote. “This is gutting, really truly sad.” The son of a Maine hockey rink manager who began skating when he was 20 months old, Roy went to North Yarmouth Academy and Tabor Academy before enrolling at BU. Both high schools have named their rinks after him. BU retired Roy's No. 24 in 1999; he graduated from the school with a degree in communications the next spring. “I think all the time how grateful I am,” Roy told the AP on the 20th anniversary of the injury. “The thing that goes through my mind every once in a while is, ‘Thank God it wasn’t a brain injury.’ I don’t want any pity.” He said he occasionally thought about what might have happened if he hadn’t been injured. “There’s times when it’s kind of fun to think about it,” he said. “It’s also kind of sad to not know the answer.” Among the players on the 1995-96 BU Terriers team were future NHLers Chris Drury, Jay Pandolfo, Shawn Bates and Mike Grier. John Hynes is now the coach of the Nashville Predators. Coach Jack Parker is an inductee in the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame; Olympic hero Mike Eruzione was an assistant coach. “It’s so sad for so many reasons — not just the athletic end of it, but what his life could have been,” Eruzione told the AP on Thursday night. “To see a life changed in such a direction because of 11 seconds. “But what he did with it afterward was incredible,” Eruzione added. "Such an inspiration. He could have folded the tent. He could have said, ‘This is it.’ But he chose another path in his life, and he raised millions of dollars. “It just sucks, that at 45, that it’s over.” ___ Former AP Sports Writer Howard Ulman contributed to this report. Jimmy Golen, The Associated Press
More than 80 million Americans have cast ballots in the U.S. presidential election, according to a tally on Thursday from the U.S. Elections Project at the University of Florida, setting the stage for the highest participation rate in over a century. The record-breaking pace, more than 58% of total 2016 turnout, reflects intense interest in the vote, in which incumbent Donald Trump, a Republican, is up against Democratic nominee Joe Biden, a former vice president. Huge numbers of people have voted by mail or at early in-person polling sites amid concerns the coronavirus could spread at busy Election Day voting places.
NEW ORLEANS — Trees on top of buses and cars. Roofs ripped off homes. Boats pushed onto the highway by surging seawater. Hundreds of thousands of people left in the dark. The remnants of Hurricane Zeta were far from land over the Atlantic on Friday, but people across the South were still digging out from the powerful storm that killed six people. The wind effects of Zeta, which came ashore in Cocodrie, Louisiana, and barrelled northeast, were felt all the way from the Gulf Coast to southern New Jersey. At the height of the outages, as many as 2.6 million people were without power across seven states from Louisiana to Virginia. Utility crews were out assessing the damage and fixing it. In Louisiana, one of the hardest hit areas was Grand Isle, a barrier island community south of New Orleans. Gov. John Bel Edwards called the damage there “catastrophic” and ordered the Louisiana National Guard to fly in soldiers to assist with search and rescue efforts. Dodie Vegas, who with her husband owns Bridge Side Marina on Grand Isle, said damage was minimal at their waterside complex of cabins, campgrounds and docking facilities, but the rest of the island wasn’t so lucky. “As far as you can see, going down the island, the power lines are cracked in half,” she said by phone Thursday after riding out the storm with family. She described torn-off roofs and scattered debris: “The middle of the island looks like a bomb was dropped.” A man was electrocuted in New Orleans, and four people died in Alabama and Georgia when trees fell on homes, authorities said, including two people who were pinned to their bed. In Biloxi, Mississippi, a man drowned when he was trapped in rising seawater. Officials repeatedly stressed that the risks were not over — pointing out that fatalities often come after a storm has passed, from things like breathing toxic generator fumes or being electrocuted by downed power lines. Zeta was the 27th named storm of a historically busy year, with more than a month left in the Atlantic hurricane season. It set a new record as the 11th named storm to make landfall in the continental U.S. in a single season, well beyond the nine that hit in 1916. And the coronavirus pandemic has only made things more difficult for evacuees. “Our heart breaks because this has been a tough, tough year,” said Gov. Edwards, whose state has taken the brunt of the hurricanes. Every storm is different, and with Zeta the biggest threat was its winds. The hurricane intensified quickly and was just shy of a major, Category 3 storm when it hit the Louisiana coast. The howling gale toppled trees and knocked limbs off stately oaks in New Orleans, and in Mississippi the storm surge whipped up by the winds tossed a shrimping boat into a front yard. Mayor Sheldon Day of Thomasville, Alabama, said hundreds of trees fell in roads and on homes, while some gas station canopies blew over. “At one point, every major thoroughfare was blocked by trees,” Day said. Many people were still assessing the damage. Keith Forrest of Bridge City, Louisiana, was launching a boat with his nephew in Lafitte, Louisiana, on Thursday to try to get to his fishing camp. “I got a phone call because the roof blew off one camp,” Forrest said. With just a few days until the Nov. 3 election, there were concerns about whether the storm would impact voters’ ability to get to the polls. Far fewer early voters showed up after the storm in Pascagoula, Mississippi, a court clerk said, and power failures in two Georgia counties disrupted voting. In Louisiana, getting power back to polling centres was a priority as was letting voters know quickly if there were any changes to locations come Tuesday. In Georgia, a group of civil rights organizations asked the governor to extend early voting hours Friday. In the remote area of Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, commercial fisherman Acy Cooper said his boats survived the storm. But without electricity, he feared operations could be shut down as long as two weeks. “Without no lights, none of the docks can work," he said. "Everything’s automated now — the scales and the conveyors.” The heightened storm activity has focused attention on climate change, which scientists say is causing wetter, stronger and more destructive storms. And as bad as the 2020 hurricane season has been, it isn’t over. Forecasters said disturbed air off the northern coast of South America could become a tropical depression and head toward Nicaragua by early next week — a forecast not lost on Louisiana’s governor. “Let’s not pray it on anybody else," Edwards said. "Let’s just pray it away from us.” ___ Amy reported from Atlanta. Associated Press contributors include Rebecca Santana in New Orleans, Ben Nadler in Atlanta, Stacey Plaisance in Marrero, Louisiana; Gerald Herbert in Lakeshore, Mississippi; Jay Reeves in Birmingham, Alabama; Denise Lavoie in Richmond, Virginia; Melinda Deslatte in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Seth Borenstein in Kensington, Maryland; Skip Foreman in Winston-Salem, North Carolina; Leah Willingham in Jackson, Mississippi; Jeff Martin in Marietta, Georgia; Sophia Tulp and Desiree Mathurin in Atlanta. Jeff Amy And Kevin McGill, The Associated Press
REGINA — Saskatchewan has hit a record of daily number of COVID-19 cases less than a week after it reported an all-time high. Health officials reported 82 new cases Thursday,, surpassing the previous high of 78 set on Saturday. Some 37 of the new cases are in the Saskatoon area, and the rest are spread around different regions of the province. Starting Friday, the Saskatchewan Health Authority is imposing restrictions on Saskatoon nightclubs that include no alcohol service between 10 p.m. and 9:30 a.m. following multiple outbreaks linked to clubs. The health order does not apply to lounges, pubs, restaurants, or liquor manufacturing facilities that have tasting rooms. Health officials say of 2,990 reported cases in the province, 707 are considered active and 25 people have died. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 29, 2020. The Canadian Press
MONTREAL — Quebec's police watchdog is investigating a police shooting Thursday that left a Black man dead in Montreal. The Bureau des enquetes independantes says in a news release that based on preliminary information from Montreal police, a man armed with a knife rushed the officers and they opened fire, killing him. Sue Montgomery, mayor of the Montreal borough of Cote-des-Neiges-Notre-Dame-de-Grace, said the victim lived in the borough, and she offered her condolences to his family and friends. His identity has not been released. "Once again, my heart is aching and I, too, am angry," she said in a written statement. "This morning another Black man in our community was shot by police." She said the borough has a history of police shootings of Black men, including the fatal 2018 shooting of 23-year-old Nicholas Gibbs. "The senseless killing of people of colour needs to end," Montgomery said. "Systemic racism is undeniable. It is present in the (Montreal police) and in all facets of our society." Police had responded to a call made just before 6 a.m. about a man in crisis in the Notre-Dame-de-Grace neighbourhood. The watchdog, known as the BEI, said that when police arrived, officers stayed in their vehicle as the man allegedly walked towards their car armed with a knife. When he turned toward another vehicle with a driver inside, police left their car to intervene, and that's when they allege the man came at them. Steve Fiset of the local paramedic service Urgences-Sante said the victim was in his 30s. He said a police officer was also transported to hospital following the shooting but had no physical injuries. Montreal police declined to comment due to the BEI investigation. The BEI said it has assigned eight investigators to the case, who will be aided by two provincial police crime-scene technicians. The investigators left the scene at 5:20 p.m. Thursday and the investigation is ongoing. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 29, 2020. The Canadian Press
Over the objections of dozens of Conservatives, the House of Commons gave approval in principle Thursday to a bill that would make it easier for dying Canadians to get medical help to end their suffering. Conservatives, including Leader Erin O'Toole, were the only MPs to vote against the bill, which passed by a vote of 246-78. While some Conservatives supported the bill Thursday, nearly two-thirds of O'Toole's 121-person caucus did not.
Bob Young spent much of his life forging a career as a prominent golfer, but at 78 years old, Neil Young's brother has released his first song. Ahead of the U.S. election on Nov. 3, the elder Young has unveiled "Hey America," a folk song where he urges the nation to "give love a chance," saying it's "the beacon of freedom." The song was recorded with a band he's dubbed “Young Bob & the Peterboroughs," whose members include Neil Young on harmonica as well as Mike Belitsky and Travis Good of Toronto band the Sadies playing drums and banjo.
Once a gleaming symbol of early 20th-century ambition and prosperity, Hoboken’s grand rail terminal now sits as a sombre reminder of the daunting challenges facing mass transit in the New York region. Eight years ago Thursday, Superstorm Sandy pushed the Hudson River over its banks, sending 8 feet of water onto underground tracks and leaving the main waiting room unusable for months. Billions of dollars in projects to protect transit infrastructure from future flooding are unfinished, as transit agencies face the parallel challenge of continuing to operate amid gaping budget holes caused by the pandemic.
Northern Health Authority (NHA) saw 14 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday (Oct. 27), the highest number of cases NHA has reported in one day since the beginning of the pandemic. The previous one-day high was 12 cases, reported on Sept. 15. In addition to cases, the B.C. COVID-19 Dashboard records the average test turn-around time in hours, with times ranging anywhere from about 30 to 40 hours. However, the two days before Oct. 27 saw some of the lowest numbers of tests performed in NHA, with 122 tests done on Oct. 25 and 139 on Oct. 26. Northern Health performed 197 tests on Oct. 24, but that number is still fairly low compared to some days in September which saw up to 500 tests completed in one day. The Terrace Local Health Area (LHA) has seen a total of 18 reported cases from January to the end of September. The total number of reported cases in Terrace is similar to the Smithers and Nechako LHAs, which have had 19 and 23 cases, but higher than in the Kitimat, Prince Rupert and Nisga’a LHAs, which have reported four, two and one case respectively. LHA cases are mapped by location of residence and updated at the end of each month, so local data for October has not been released yet. In total, NHA has seen 399 COVID-19 cases, with 373 of those cases recovered as of Oct. 28. There are currently 16 new cases and 23 active cases, and three deaths have also been confirmed in the north. As of Oct. 28 Northern Health reports 32 people ever hospitalized to date and one currently in intensive care. With files from Clare Rayment Ben Bogstie, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Interior News
Struggling plane maker Airbus says new European virus lockdown measures are making its life “a bit more difficult,” as it announced 1 billion euros ($1.16 billion) in pandemic-related losses for the third quarter Thursday amid a slower-than-expected recovery in air travel.
Finnish telecommunications company Nokia on Thursday reported improved third-quarter earnings largely in line with expectations, but acknowledged it faced challenges in the race for 5G cellular networks. Nokia said it would invest more in the new generation of broadband technology and revamp business strategy under its new CEO, who said the company would do “whatever it takes” to achieve 5G leadership. The quarterly report was the first one issued since CEO Pekka Lundmark took over the company’s top spot on Aug. 1.
Public relations firms hired by the Department of Health and Human Services vetted political views of hundreds of celebrities for a planned $250 million ad blitz aimed at portraying President Donald Trump's response to the coronavirus outbreak in a positive light, according to documents released Thursday by a House committee. A political appointee at the department suggested creating a government-funded campaign to rival the World War II icon Rosie the Riveter, according to the documents, and taglines like “Helping the President will Help the Country.” None of the celebrities agreed to participate — they may not have known they were being vetted — and the campaign has been put on hold.
The federal government will give P.E.I. almost $1 million to help Island farmers better protect the health and safety of farm workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, it announced in a written release Thursday.The $945,000 will come from the Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food's $35 million Emergency On-Farm Support Fund, which was launched in July to help Canadian farms affected by COVID-19. "The funding we are announcing today is both timely and deserved," said P.E.I. Minister of Agriculture Bloyce Thompson."Whether implementing measures to protect customers, or to allow physical distancing for employees, our farmers have been spending their own money to enhance safety to others." The funding will be delivered to Island farmers by the P.E.I. Department of Agriculture. Eligible projects will include improvements to living quarters and work stations, temporary or emergency housing on- or off-farm, personal protective equipment, sanitary stations, work stations and other health and safety measures that protect the health of Canadian and temporary foreign workers from COVID-19.'Much-needed assistance'The program is retroactive, said Ron Maynard, president of the P.E.I. Federation of Agriculture."The Emergency On-Farm Support Fund is an investment that will provide farm employers with some much-needed assistance," said Maynard. Maynard also said the money would help in securing a workforce."We believe this fund will assist in ensuring we continue to have access to labour, including offshore workers, and ensuring future arrangements are less uncertain," he said.Projects will be processed on a first-come, first-served basis, and extra consideration will be given to farms that are deemed more at risk of COVID-19, said Thompson. He said farms that have on-site processing or operations where employees can't always adhere to physical distancing recommendations would make them higher-risk settings.Appropriate accommodations for temporary foreign workers are also an area of focus, Thompson said. Island farms can apply through the P.E.I. Department of Agriculture website from Oct. 29 to Jan. 15, 2021. The amount of funding is based on an estimated 120 farmers applying.The program and the farmer will share the cost equally, up to $30,000 per farm operation. Women, youth, visible minorities, Indigenous people and people with disabilities will receive an extra 10 per cent, amounting to a 60-40 split as the federal government "promotes and empowers underrepresented groups in the agricultural sector," the release said. More from CBC P.E.I.
Political scientist Kathryn Harrison shares insights on the outcomes Canada can expect if the U.S. chooses Biden as their next president.
Ontario and Quebec’s record daily growth in cases is alarming for residents, but ’the raw number isn’t as important,’ Infectious Disease expert Dr. Sumon Chakrabarti says about the spread of coronavirus. Instead, the doctor suggests looking at daily trends, which give a better indication of the rate of transmission overall.