The “Trump-made-me-do-it” defence is already looking like a longshot. Facing damning evidence in the deadly Capitol siege last month — including social media posts flaunting their actions — rioters are arguing in court they were following then-President Donald Trump's instructions on Jan. 6. But the legal strategy has already been shot down by at least one judge and experts believe the argument is not likely to get anyone off the hook for the insurrection where five people died, including a police officer. “This purported defence, if recognized, would undermine the rule of law because then, just like a king or a dictator, the president could dictate what’s illegal and what isn’t in this country," U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell said recently in ordering pretrial detention of William Chrestman, a suspected member of the Kansas City-area chapter of the Proud Boys. “And that is not how we operate here.” Chrestman’s attorneys argued in court papers that Trump gave the mob “explicit permission and encouragement” to do what they did, providing those who obeyed him with “a viable defence against criminal liability.” “It is an astounding thing to imagine storming the United States Capitol with sticks and flags and bear spray, arrayed against armed and highly trained law enforcement. Only someone who thought they had an official endorsement would even attempt such a thing. And a Proud Boy who had been paying attention would very much believe he did,” Chrestman’s lawyers wrote. Trump was acquitted of inciting the insurrection during his second impeachment trial, where Democrats made some of the same arguments defence attorneys are making in criminal court. Some Republican lawmakers have said the better place for the accusations against Trump is in court, too. Meanwhile, prosecutors have brought charges against more than 250 people so far in the attack, including conspiracy, assault, civil disorder and obstruction of an official proceeding. Authorities have suggested that rare sedition charges could be coming against some. Hundreds of Trump supporters were photographed and videotaped storming the Capitol and scores posted selfies inside the building on social media, so they can’t exactly argue in court they weren’t there. Blaming Trump may be the best defence they have. “What’s the better argument when you’re on videotape prancing around the Capitol with a coat rack in your hand?” said Sam Shamansky, who’s representing Dustin Thompson, an Ohio man accused of stealing a coat rack during the riot. Shamansky said his client would never have been at the Capitol on Jan. 6 if Trump hadn’t “summoned him there.” Trump, he added, engaged in a “devious yet effective plot to brainwash” supporters into believing the election was stolen, putting them in the position where they “felt the the need to defend their country at the request of the commander in chief.” “I think it fits perfectly,” he said of the defence. “The more nuanced question is: Who is going to buy it? What kind of jury panel do you need to understand that?” While experts say blaming Trump may not get their clients off the hook, it may help at sentencing when they ask the judge for leniency. “It could likely be considered a mitigating factor that this person genuinely believed they were simply following the instructions of the leader of the United States,” said Barbara McQuade, a former U.S. attorney in Michigan who's now a professor at the University of Michigan Law School. It could also bolster any potential cases against the former president, experts say. “That defence is dead on arrival,” said Bradley Simon, a New York City white-collar criminal defence attorney and former federal prosecutor. “But I do think that these statements by defendants saying that they were led on by Trump causes a problem for him if the Justice Department or the attorney general in D.C. were to start looking at charges against him for incitement of the insurrection.” While the legal bar is high for prosecuting Trump in the Capitol siege, the former president is already facing a lawsuit from Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson that accuses him of conspiring with extremist groups to prevent Congress from certifying the election results. And more lawsuits could come. Trump spread baseless claims about the election for weeks and addressed thousands of supporters at a rally near the White House before the Capitol riot, telling them that they had gathered in Washington "to save our democracy." Later, Trump said, “I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.” A lawyer for Jacob Chansley, the shirtless man who wore face paint and a hat with horns inside the Capitol, attached a highlighted transcript of the Trump's speech before the riot to a court filing seeking Chansley's release from custody. The defence lawyer, Albert Watkins, said the federal government is sending a “disturbingly chilling message” that Americans will be prosecuted “if they do that which the President asks them to do.” Defence lawyers have employed other strategies without better success. In one case, the judge called a defence attorney’s portrayal of the riots as mere trespassing or civil disobedience both “unpersuasive and detached from reality.” In another, a judge rejected a man’s claim that he was “duped” into joining the anti-government Oath Keepers group and participating in the attack on the Capitol. Other defendants linked to militant groups also have tried to shift blame to Trump in seeking their pretrial release from jail. An attorney for Jessica Watkins said the Oath Keepers member believed local militias would be called into action if Trump invoked the Insurrection Act to stay in office. Watkins disavowed the Oath Keepers during a court hearing on Friday, saying she has been “appalled” by fellow members of the far-right militia. “However misguided, her intentions were not in any way related to an intention to overthrow the government, but to support what she believed to be the lawful government,” her lawyer wrote. Meanwhile, a lawyer for Dominic Pezzola, another suspected Proud Boy, said he “acted out of the delusional belief that he was a ‘patriot’ protecting his country." Defence attorney Jonathan Zucker described Pezzola as “one of millions of Americans who were misled by the President's deception.” “Many of those who heeded his call will be spending substantial portions if not the remainder of their lives in prison as a consequence," he wrote. “Meanwhile Donald Trump resumes his life of luxury and privilege." Michael Kunzelman And Alanna Durkin Richer, The Associated Press
Postal service along a stretch of North Kelly Road remains in limbo two months after door-to-door delivery was cut due to safety concerns. About 30 residents in the vicinity of Springwood Elementary School must continue to pick up their mail at the post office on Fifth Avenue downtown, a 15-20 minute drive away. And even then, there is no guarantee it will be worth the trip. Joyce Miller, a senior living in the 9100 block where she and her husband are housebound due to the COVID pandemic, has been able to get a neighbour to pick up her mail. It seemed to go well initially, but when the neighbour made the trip in late January, there was nothing waiting for Miller despite the fact she relies on the mail to get her bills. A week later, the neighbour made the trip again and this time came back with 60 pieces for Miller. "You should see the stack of mail I got here, it is unbelievable," she said. Miller and her neighbours received a notice on Dec. 18 saying the service has been put on hold. Traffic congestion, vehicle speed, and the street width were raised as the points of trouble in the notice. Miller prefers to see a return of service but if that doesn't happen, she noted that there are superboxes on Zral Road just a two-minute walk away from where she lives and she would be happy with that. In an email sent this week, Canada Post spokesperson Nicole Lecompte said the safety review has been completed and officials are now working on a permanent solution for the residents of North Kelly Road. "We will communicate with our customers as soon as a decision has been made. We appreciate your patience and understanding at this time," Lecompte said. Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince George Citizen
Calling it a difficult issue, Cariboo Prince George MP Todd Doherty says a more fulsome debate is in order on expanding medical assistance in dying to cover Canadians who are not approaching the natural end of their lives. The federal Liberals are hoping to have Bill C-7 passed to meet a court-imposed deadline for bringing the law into compliance with a 2019 Quebec Superior Court ruling. But with the Conservatives signaling that they may drag out debate on recently-introduced amendments, the government has asked the court to give it one more month - until March 26, according to The Canadian Press. "I think my concern remains the same as it was back when it was C-14 in my first term, and now with C-7, is that a piece of legislation such as this is being rushed through without proper consultation and without proper communication and debate," Doherty said. The Conservatives largely opposed expanding access to assisted dying in the original bill. "I understand all sides of the argument, I truly do... and I think we would be doing a disservice to many, many Canadians if we just allowed this to pass without fulsome review and debate," Doherty said. Among the amendments proposed by the Senate is to provide assistance in dying to Canadians suffering solely from grievous and irremediable mental illnesses. As originally drafted, the bill would have imposed a blanket ban on assisted dying for people suffering solely from mental illnesses. A strong majority of senators argued that the exclusion was unconstitutional, violating the right to equal treatment under the law, regardless of physical or mental disability, as guaranteed in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. They voted to impose an 18-month time limit on the mental illness exclusion, which the government now wants to extend to two years. During that interlude, the government is also proposing to have experts conduct an independent review of the issue and, within one year, recommend the "protocols, guidance and safeguards" that should apply to requests for assisted dying from people with a mental illness. "What I feel is that people with a mental illness problem, they need assistance to live and thrive, not hasten death," Doherty said. "There are dark days, there are no two ways about it, but I don't think that there is anyone there that can determine whether a mental illness represents an advanced state of decline in capabilities that cannot be reversed." Doherty was named special advisor to the leader on mental health and wellness when Erin O'Toole became Conservative leader. - with files from The Canadian Press Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince George Citizen
MANCHESTER, England — Manchester City won its 20th straight game in all competitions and opened up a 13-point lead in the Premier League by beating West Ham 2-1 thanks to goals from centre backs Ruben Dias and John Stones on Saturday. Playing less than 72 hours after a Champions League match in Budapest, City produced one of its sloppiest displays in recent months but emerged with its winning run intact as Stones swept in the decisive goal in the 68th minute from Riyad Mahrez’s pass. Dias, Stones’ partner in central defence, put City in front off a header from a deep left-footed cross by Kevin De Bruyne in the 30th only for Pep Guardiola’s team to concede its first home goal in 2 1/2 months when Michail Antonio equalized just before halftime. “Some days it doesn’t come off for the forwards, and today me and Ruben chipped in,” Stones said. “That's part of us being such a good team and the collective. In big games or important games, everyone chips in, maybe sometimes the person you don’t expect.” It was City’s 14th win in a row in the league — only the sixth time that has been achieved in English top-flight history. Three of those have been attained by City under Guardiola since his arrival in 2016. Manchester United and Leicester are tied for points as City’s nearest rivals, and both play Sunday. Guardiola rotated his team, as he promised he would, and included record scorer Sergio Aguero in the starting lineup for the first time in the league since Oct. 24 — coincidentally against West Ham, too. The injury-plagued Argentina striker lasted only 60 minutes before being taken off and he looked off the pace. He was partially to blame for West Ham’s 43rd-minute goal, too, after losing possession cheaply inside City’s half before the visitors broke forward quickly through Pablo Fornals and Vladimir Coufal. Jesse Lingard turned Coufal's cross toward goal and Antonio applied the final touch from close range. West Ham, in the unusually elevated position of fourth, allowed City few clear-cut opportunities at an empty Etihad Stadium and posed quite a threat at the other end. Antonio struck the post before his goal, while centre back Issa Diop headed narrowly wide in the third and final minute of stoppage time. “We had to fight right until the last few minutes,” Stones said. "They made it difficult. So, really satisfied. “We weren’t (playing) our free-flowing football like we have been used to in recent weeks, but that's how they set up against us. We showed great character in the second half.” City has won all of its games — across four competitions — since a 1-1 draw against West Bromwich Albion on Dec. 15, which left Guardiola's side in ninth place in the league at the time. That was the last time City had conceded at home, and even that was an own-goal by Dias. Antonio became the first opposition player to score a goal from open play against City at the Etihad in 12 league games, since James Maddison of Leicester on Sept. 27. ___ More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports The Associated Press
(Photo: Jay Legere - image credit) It started with a Facebook post back in April 2020. "We will be making a batch of fish sauce and salad dressing for sale," it said. Three hours later ... more than 250 bottles were sold, and Yellowknife's Bullocks Bistro was in business. "This was incredible," said co-owner Joanne Martin. "It reaffirmed that this was a viable product for us," she said. Joanne Martin had no idea when she started selling her salad dressing and fish sauce it would turn into a full scale business. Martin says the salad dressing and fish sauce has always been popular; people would go to the restaurant with their own bottles to fill up. But when COVID-19 hit, people weren't able to get it and they were needing a fix. Once word got out they could get it in local stores, people were pretty much lining up for the stuff. "We've sold so much of it, we can't keep it on the shelves," said Yellowknife Co-op deli manager Megan Marks. Marks says they've sold close to 7,000 bottles … since May. Megan Marks says Bullocks Bistro salad dressing is very popular at the Yellowknife Co-op. They get orders twice a week and they are almost always sold out. "We get a shipment from them twice a week and we get people that come and they send it to family in Newfoundland and Ontario … it's so popular," Marks said. The dressing and sauce are being sold in stores in four communities across the Northwest Territories. Now the restaurant is about to make a big step up in production in hopes of getting their product out to the rest of the world. "By the end of June we realized that we are going to need something bigger … we can't do the restaurant and this as well," said Martin. Joanne Marting says her products are made with love and it will remain that way when they open the processing facility. So they purchased a spot in the Kam Lake area of Yellowknife and construction of a processing facility will begin in May. "We will probably start out with three to six staff [and] we should be able to put out around 6,000 bottles a day." Martin says her sauce and dressing is made with love and expects that selling it as a northern product will be a huge marketing tool for them. If all goes according to plan, the new salad dressing and fish sauce plant will be open in August.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Two days before the assault on the U.S. Capitol, Pennsylvania state Sen. Doug Mastriano, a Republican, said supporters of then-President Donald Trump's claims of election fraud were basically in a “death match with the Democrat Party.” A day later, right-wing activist Alan Hostetter, a staunch Trump supporter known for railing against California's virus-inspired stay-at-home orders, urged rallygoers in Washington to "put the fear of God in the cowards, the traitors, the RINOs, the communists of the Democrat Party.” The shared grammatical construction — incorrect use of the noun “Democrat” as an adjective — was far from the most shocking thing about the two men's statements. But it identified them as members of the same tribe, conservatives seeking to define the opposition through demeaning language. Amid bipartisan calls to dial back extreme partisanship following the insurrection, the intentional misuse of “Democrat” as an adjective remains in nearly universal use among Republicans. Propelled by conservative media, it also has caught on with far-right elements that were energized by the Trump presidency. Academics and partisans disagree on the significance of the word play. Is it a harmless political tactic intended to annoy Republicans' opponents, or a maliciously subtle vilification of one of America’s two major political parties that further divides the nation? Thomas Patterson, a political communication professor at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy, said using “Democrat” as an adjective delivers a “little twist” of the knife with each usage because it irritates Democrats, but sees it as little more than that. “This is," he says, “just another piece in a big bubbling kettle of animosities that are out there.” Others disagree. Purposely mispronouncing the formal name of the Democratic Party and equating it with political ideas that are not democratic goes beyond mere incivility, said Vanessa Beasley, an associate professor of communications at Vanderbilt University who studies presidential rhetoric. She said creating short-hand descriptions of people or groups is a way to dehumanize them. In short: Language matters. “The idea is to strip it down to that noun and make it into this blur, so that you can say that these are bad people — and my party, the people who are using the term, are going to be the upholders of democracy,” she said. To those who see the discussion as an exercise in political correctness, Susan Benesch, executive director of the Dangerous Speech Project, said to look deeper. “It’s just two little letters — i and c — added to the end of a word, right?” she said. “But the small difference in the two terms, linguistically or grammatically, does not protect against a large difference in meaning and impact of the language.” During the “Stop the Steal” rallies that emerged to support Trump's groundless allegations that the 2020 election was stolen from him, the construction was everywhere. Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel accused “Democrat lawyers and rogue election officials” of “an unprecedented power grab” related to the election. Demonstrators for the president's baseless cause mirrored her language. After Republican congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia was removed from her House committees for espousing sometimes dangerous conspiracy theories, she tweeted: “In this Democrat tyrannical government, Conservative Republicans have no say on committees anyway." Trump’s lawyers used the construction frequently during his second impeachment trial, following the lead of the former president, who employed it routinely while in office. During a campaign rally last October in Wisconsin, he explained his thinking. “You know I always say Democrat. You know why? Because it sounds worse,” Trump said. “Democrat sounds lousy, but you know what? That’s actually their name, the Democrat Party. Right? The Democrat Party. So I always say Democrat.” In fact, “Democratic” to describe some version of a U.S. political party has been around since Thomas Jefferson and James Madison formed the Democratic-Republican Party in the 1790s. Modern Democrats are loosely descended from a split of that party. The precise origins of Republicans' truncated phrasing are difficult to pin down, but the Republican National Committee formalized it in a vote ahead of the 1956 presidential election. Then-spokesman L. Richard Guylay told The New York Times that “Democrat Party” was “a natural,” because it was already in common use among Republicans and better reflected the “diverse viewpoints” within the opposing party — which the GOP suggested weren’t always representative of small-d democratic values. Wisconsin Sen. Joseph McCarthy, who had just led his notorious campaign against alleged communists, Soviet spies and sympathizers, was the most notable user of the phrase “Democrat Party” ahead of the vote. The current RNC did not respond to emails and phone messages seeking comment for this story. The construction was used sparsely in the following decades, but in recent times has spread to become part of conservatives' everyday speech. At the height of last summer’s racial justice protests, the group representing state attorneys general criticized “inaction by Democrat AGs” to support law enforcement. In explaining its rules for cleaning Georgia's voter roles, the office of Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said it was following a process started in the 1990s under “a Democrat majority General Assembly and signed into law by a Democrat Governor.” Asked recently what he would think of his former health director running for the U.S. Senate in Ohio, Republican Gov. Mike DeWine responded, “I’m going to stay out of Democrat primaries.” Using Democrat as a pejorative is now so common that it’s almost jarring to hear a Republican or conservative commentator accurately say “Democratic Party.” Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O'Connor said she wishes both parties would abandon their heightened rhetoric toward each other. She spoke out forcefully in September after the Ohio Republican Party maligned a “Democrat common pleas judge” who had ruled against them. The party later apologized. Her objection was the politicization of the judiciary, which she has fought against, and not specifically the GOP's misuse of the word “Democrat." But in a later interview, she said the language was a reflection of today's hyperpartisan political environment. “It's used as almost like a curse word,” said O'Connor, a Republican. “It's not being used as a compliment or even for purposes of being a benign identifier. It's used as a condemnation, and that's not right.” For their part, Democrats rarely push back, even when the phrase is used in state legislative chambers or on the floor of Congress. It wasn't always that way. Then-President George W. Bush departed from his written remarks and used the phrase “Democrat majority” in his 2007 State of the Union address. He was swiftly rebuked and apologized. “Now look, my diction isn’t all that good,” a rueful Bush said. “I have been accused of occasionally mangling the English language, so I appreciate you inviting the head of the Republic party.” Bush’s self-deprecating joke highlighted a key issue around Republicans' use of “Democrat” as an epithet, says political scientist Michael Cornfield, an associate professor at George Washington University. Democrats don't have a comparable insult for Republicans. "It's a one-way provocation,” he said. In the 1950s, Democrats toyed with a tit-for-tat approach in which they would refer to Republicans as “Publicans,” the widely despised toll collectors of ancient Rome. Republicans scoffed at the effort, which they rightly noted no one would understand. Republicans also could turn it around as a way to burnish their brand: In British usage, a publican is someone who owns a pub. Meanwhile, “Republic” — without the “a-n” — isn’t derogatory. It's known as a “God word” in American politics, just as small-d “democratic” is, meaning a revered cultural concept that's universally understood. The truncated “Democrat,” on the other hand, “rhymes with rat, bureaucrat, kleptocrat, plutocrat," Cornfield said. "‘Crats’ are bad. So you can see why they do it.” David Pepper, a former Democratic Party chairman in Ohio, says Republicans' phrasing has “clearly been thought about." Even so, he doesn't see trying to erase it as a good use of Democrats' time as the party seeks to reset the national agenda after four years of Trump. He said that while President Joe Biden has pledged national unity, “the other side is literally trying to make the other party sound like rodents." “To me,” Pepper said, “that’s absurd and disturbing at the same time.” ___ AP news researcher Jennifer Farrar in New York contributed to this report. Julie Carr Smyth, The Associated Press
A man remains guilty of selling drugs outside a Prince George convenience store after his lawyer failed to convince a judge he was entrapped by undercover police officers posing as customers. Douglas William Gibbs was arrested and charged after he sold heroin-fentanyl and methamphetamine for cash to the officers on Aug. 29 and 30, 2018 outside the 7-11 at 20th Avenue and Spruce Street. The officers were from out of town and had been brought in as part of an investigation that, at first, did not include the spot. At issue was whether RCMP had reasonable suspicion to send in the officers. During a trial last month, defence counsel Connor Carleton argued the grounds for the action were "too vague and soft." In particular, he noted that in the lead up, an RCMP officer noticed suspicious activity but could not confirm an actual transaction had taken place nor provide a date for the sighting. In a decision issued Monday, Provincial Court Judge Peter McDermick agreed that on its own, it was not enough to justify the move but noted it was not the only reason the undercover officers were deployed to the spot. People involved in drug trafficking and drug use were starting to spend time at the location, there were overt signs of intoxication by some of the people seen, drug paraphernalia was found in the parking lot and nearby alley and police were getting calls to the spot several times a day for drug-related issues, the court had heard. "This was an address are or near the top of all calls for service," McDermick said. Sentencing will occur at a later date. Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince George Citizen
Chief Chris Moonias looked into a web camera as he prepared to get a COVID-19 vaccine just after precious doses arrived in his northern Ontario community. “I’m coming to you live from Neskantaga First Nation community centre where our vaccines will be administered,” a jovial Moonias, wearing a blue disposable mask, said during a Facebook live video at the start of February. Moonias was first to get the vaccine in the fly-in Oji-Cree First Nation on the shores of Attawapiskat Lake north of Thunder Bay. The vaccine had arrived by plane earlier in the day after weeks of planning, and the chief's video was part of a campaign to get community members on board. Moonias said in an interview that he had done his own research, had spoken with medical professionals and wasn’t concerned about getting the shot. About 88 per cent of eligible on-reserve members have since received a first dose of the Moderna vaccine. Second doses are to arrive Monday. However, earlier this week, the reserve declared a state of emergency due to a COVID-19 outbreak, with some cases linked to the Thunder Bay District Jail. Moonias said four off-reserve members in Thunder Bay, all under the age of 40 — including his nephew — have died. And he's worried about the 200 other members who live off the reserve — almost the same number as those on the reserve — and when they'll get inoculated. “I even thought about flying my people up ... to get the vaccine,” said Moonias, who added it's unlikely to be an option because of cost. Canada is in the midst of the largest vaccine rollout in its history. The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic has hit Indigenous populations much harder and Ottawa says they are a priority for vaccinations. The actual distribution remains complex and varied across the country. Neskantaga is one of 31 fly-in First Nations included in Operation Remote Immunity, part of the first phase of Ontario’s vaccination rollout. The operation was developed with Nishnawbe Aski Nation and Ornge, the province's air ambulance service. The goal is to provide mass vaccinations by April 30 and it is having early successes. There are challenges getting the vaccine to remote First Nations and questions about distribution for urban Indigenous populations. The Assembly of First Nations says most Indigenous communities haven’t received sufficient supply to extend doses to their off-reserve members. The National Association of Friendship Centres says there is no national vaccination plan for urban Indigenous people. There's also concern there is no national plan to tackle decades of mistrust created by systemic racism and experimentation on Indigenous people. There are many examples throughout Canadian history of scientists sponsored by the federal government or the government itself doing medical experiments on Indigenous people, including children, who were the subject of a tuberculosis vaccine trial in Saskatchewan that began in the 1930s. Ontario New Democrat Sol Mamakwa, who represents the electoral district of Kiiwetinoong, said some constituents tell him they are scared to take the vaccine. They don’t trust it. He has been travelling to communities to help promote it and received his first dose alongside members of Muskrat Dam Lake First Nation. Community engagement has been key in vaccine uptake, Mamakwa said. Promotion begins weeks before vaccine teams arrive and includes radio campaigns, social media posts and live online question-and-answer sessions. It’s about giving people information, he said. “One of the only ways out of this pandemic is the vaccine,” said Wade Durham, Ornge’s chief operating officer, who added it's key to have Indigenous people involved in vaccine planning. Each First Nation in Operation Remote Immunity has a community member responsible for answering questions and setting up a vaccination site. Immunization teams are required to take cultural training and, when possible, include Indigenous medical professionals and language speakers. Indigenous Services Canada said it is aware that a history of colonization and systemic racism has caused mistrust, so campaigns are being developed specifically for First Nations, Inuit and Metis communities. Michelle Driedger, a Metis professor of community health sciences at the University of Manitoba, said experience has shown that stakes are high when it comes to Indigenous communities. During the H1N1 pandemic in 2009, the Public Health Agency of Canada prioritized vaccines by geography. A main lesson learned was to increase Indigenous representation at decision-making tables, she said. At the time, Indigenous people were over-represented in hospitalizations and intensive care stays, as well as in deaths. Those living in remote and isolated communities experienced worse outcomes. Driedger said the vaccine response is better now, but there is “rational skepticism.” There needs to be a transparent vaccination plan for Indigenous communities — no matter where they are, she said. The Matawa First Nations tribal council said its four communities reachable by road are not getting the same vaccine access as its five fly-in ones, and more needs to be done. Provincial officials have said that remote First Nations received priority for the vaccine rollout because of less access to on-site health care and increased health risks. Chief Rick Allen from Constance Lake First Nation has said the vaccine needs to go where the outbreaks are. Back in Neskantaga, Moonias said he'll do anything he can to protect anyone he can. He continues to give updates about his vaccination. In another Facebook video posted soon after he received his shot, the chief gave a thumbs-up and said he had no pain or discomfort. “We need this. We need to beat this virus.” This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 27, 2021. ___ This story was produced through the Journalists for Human Rights Indigenous Reporters Program under the mentorship of The Canadian Press, with funding from the RBC Foundation in support of RBC Future Launch. Crystal Hardy Zongwe Binesikwe, The Canadian Press
(Don Somers/CBC - image credit) The Lighthouse Supported Living announced Friday that the North Battleford location will close, effective April 1. The organization cited "substantial funding changes" as the reason for the closure. A partnership with Provincial Métis Housing Corporation (PMHC) fell through, leaving the emergency shelter with not enough money to operate. PMHC provided about half a million in funding last year, according to The Lighthouse's executive director, Don Windels. The overall budget to run the facility is between $750,000 and $800,000 a year. The organization "will continue to explore emergency shelter funding sources and partnerships. Transitional and supported housing programs will continue to operate without disruption," a release from The Lighthouse said. Opposition leader Ryan Meili said he was disappointed to hear that the emergency shelter was closing, and that this is an opportunity for the government to step up and help. "It's pretty clear that [the provincial government] could be offering more funding. This is an area that they've been very reluctant to enter into in any serious way in terms of supporting housing for the most vulnerable," Meili said Friday. CBC has reached out to the provincial government, but no one was immediately available for comment. Windels said the majority of the staff is going to be let go as a result of the loss. "There's concern both for the staff obviously because they're losing their jobs but also the tenants because people who do find themselves, for whatever reason, homeless in North Battleford are going to have a harder time now finding a place," he said. There were people in a certain part of the building who had been there longer term, but the organization will have to evict them now, too. "We will assist them. We will definitely do whatever we can to find them housing." Don Windels, executive director of The Lighthouse, said it was a hard day to let go the staff at the shelter. It's possible the closure of the 37-bed shelter will affect RCMP too. Windels said RCMP would sometimes bring folks who were intoxicated to the shelter to stay the night. Now, RCMP will likely just have to take them in. Windels said they've reached out to the province and the federal government for help, but said it was a dead end. They both said their policies don't allow them to fund the shelter the way it needs to be funded. There are a couple more irons in the fire, but nothing concrete yet, Windels said. The way Saskatchewan funds shelters needs to change and Saskatchewan should core fund shelters, Windels said. "That way, we don't have to spend our time running after money, we can actually spend our time serving individuals that need the help," he said.
Twenty departments in France and one northern province in Poland have had stricter measures enforced From this weekend to stem the spread of COVID-19 following localised infection surges.View on euronews
NEWPORT, R.I. — The Breakers is taking a break. The Preservation Society of Newport County says it's closing the famed Gilded Age mansion for three months starting Monday. But there's good news for mansion aficionados — Marble House, a popular Newport destination and National Historic Landmark that's been closed since last March because of the coronavirus pandemic, is reopening to visitors. “We are excited to welcome people back to this spectacular house and share its fascinating history," Trudy Coxe, CEO and executive director of the Preservation Society, said in a statement. Marble House was completed in 1892 as a summer home for William K. and Alva Vanderbilt of New York City. It was designed by famed architect Richard Morris Hunt with inspiration from the Petit Trianon at Versailles, France. Hunt was also commissioned by Cornelius Vanderbilt II to design The Breakers after it burned down in an 1892 fire. The Italian Renaissance-style mansion was completed in 1895. The Breakers is scheduled to reopen by May 28, Coxe said. The Associated Press
(Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press - image credit) New Brunswickers can now travel and visit people in different regions after a series of changes to the orange phase took effect at midnight. The province reported two new cases on Saturday as the active total continues to drop. The new cases are people in their 70s in the Edmundston region (Zone 4). There are 41 total active cases across New Brunswick, with two additional recoveries announced Saturday. One person is hospitalized and in intensive care related to the virus. Residents can now go between orange zones for non-essential trips and include people from other regions as part of their steady 10 contacts. Hospital visits are also permitted as of Saturday with public health measures in place. The change follows several instances of family members unable to see ill or dying relatives. In one situation, an 80-year-old was kicked out of the hospital for holding her husband's hand. Under the revised orange rules, compassionate travel exemptions to attend a funeral will be offered to people living outside New Brunswick. People will need approval from Public Health and must adhere to guidelines that include a five-day self-isolation and negative test upon arrival. The province announced the looser restrictions at a news conference on Friday. Dr. Jennifer Russell, the province chief medical officer of health, said a return to the less-restrictive yellow phase could be just over a week away if the decline in cases continues. She said rules will be modified due to the presence of COVID variants. "The fewer contacts each person has, the better," Russell said. "This is so very important." Public Health has updated and loosened some of the orange phase rules as of Friday. People will be asked to limit their contacts to a steady 15 under the yellow phase, which can include those living in other health zones. New Brunswick reported 1,430 total cases of COVID-19 in Saturday's update. There have been 1,362 recoveries and 26 deaths. Public Health has conducted 228,219 tests, including 827 on Friday. More vaccine arrives New Brunswick has a larger supply of COVID-19 vaccine after additional shipments arrived this week. The province received more than 11,000 doses, according to the latest numbers from the federal government. Those shipments boost the total number of doses to 46,775, including 36,075 of Pfizer-BioNTech and 10,700 of Moderna. Another 9,360 doses of the Pfizer vaccine are expected to arrive next week. Play to resume for N.B. teams in QMJHL The Quebec Major Junior Hockey League has announced plans to resume the season for New Brunswick teams after the pandemic put their games on pause. The province's three teams will be allowed to compete against each other starting the week of March 8. A new schedule is expected to be released next week, and fans will be allowed at arenas. The league said the decision follows meetings with Public Health and government and that the situation will be re-evaluated in the coming weeks. What to do if you have a symptom People concerned they might have COVID-19 symptoms can take a self-assessment test online. Public Health says symptoms shown by people with COVID-19 have included: A fever above 38 C. A new cough or worsening chronic cough. Sore throat. Runny nose. Headache. New onset of fatigue, muscle pain, diarrhea, loss of sense of taste or smell. Difficulty breathing. In children, symptoms have also included purple markings on the fingers and toes. People with one of those symptoms should: Stay at home. Call Tele-Care 811 or their doctor. Describe symptoms and travel history. Follow instructions.
REGINA — A first-of-its-kind law in Canada meant to warn those at risk of domestic violence has had a slower-than-expected uptake in its first eight months. Legislation known informally as "Clare's Law" came into force in Saskatchewan last June. It allows police to warn someone that they could be in danger from their partner. A committee with police and victims services recommends what should be disclosed. An advocate who sits on that committee says six requests for information were made between June and January. “It’s hard to say at this point whether it’s because people don’t know … or it’s because it really is geared at people who are just beginning a relationship and begin to notice red flags," said Jo-Anne Dusel, executive director of the Provincial Association of Transition Houses of Saskatchewan. “During a pandemic, people aren’t generally getting involved in new relationships, so that could be why we haven’t had many." The legislation originated in the United Kingdom and is named after Clare Wood, a woman who was murdered in 2009 by a partner she didn't know had a violent criminal history. Saskatchewan was the first in Canada to adopt the measure. The province has struggled with some of the highest rates of domestic violence per capita in the country. Alberta expects to implement Clare's Law in April after consulting with victims advocates, Indigenous groups and new Canadians, a government spokesman said. Newfoundland and Labrador has also been working on bringing similar legislation passed in December 2019 into effect. The law allows people who feel they might be at risk from a partner — or know someone who is — to apply to police for information on an individual's past. Police can choose to warn potential victims if there has been abuse. Officers can also trigger a disclosure if they feel someone is in danger. Critics say the law is well-intentioned, but won't reduce domestic violence rates. They say women trying to leave dangerous relationships need resources, housing and child care. Dusel said it's meant for people who are early into a relationship before violence or abuse starts. “One case was an individual who’d met someone quite recently and this person was pressuring them to move out of province and that wasn’t quite sitting right with them, " she said. In the six requests, those at risk were women and the partners were men, many of whom showed a pattern as serial abusers, said Dusel. Dusel said what gets disclosed is a risk assessment, and in five out of the six cases, potential victims were deemed at high risk. "There was actually one situation where the person got the call back from the police about the disclosure and they said, ‘You know what? That’s all I needed to know. If you have something to share with me, I’ve made my decision. I won’t be continuing this relationship.'" Dusel, along with the Saskatchewan Party government, believes another hurdle is the lack of participation by the RCMP, which is the police service for small towns in the primarily rural province. "This has prevented a majority of rural residents from accessing Clare’s Law in their own community," wrote Ministry of Justice spokeswoman Margherita Vittorelli in an email. "In light of the pandemic, it is important for people to know that they can access Clare’s Law through a remote application." The Mounties have said their participation could risk violating federal privacy rules. But that may change. "The RCMP is developing draft amendments to the RCMP Regulations, 2014 that will expressly authorize disclosure of personal information under Clare’s Law," wrote spokeswoman Cpl. Caroline Duval. "We are not able to, at this time, provide a timeline for when we expect the regulations will be finalized, but can confirm they are a priority for the RCMP." This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 27, 2021 Stephanie Taylor, The Canadian Press
(File/Getty Images - image credit) Connor McDavid and Darnell Nurse caution hockey fans looking forward to an old-fashioned, 80's-style track meet in a three-game series that opens Saturday between the Edmonton Oilers and Toronto Maple Leafs. For McDavid and Nurse say their Oilers know better than to give players like Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner and John Tavares on-ice real estate to work their magic. "Every time we play Toronto, the games have been pretty low scoring," McDavid says. "People expect these big offensive nights and I think both teams have that respect for each other where neither of them want to open it up and let the other offensive guys get going. "I think you can expect a tight-checking little series." Tight checking or not, the baseball-style set in Edmonton represents a rare mid-season opportunity – thanks to the creation of the NHL North Division due to the COVID-19 pandemic – to witness two of the league's best clash in a mini-playoff. And the stakes are high. The first-place Leafs (15-4-2) hold a four-point lead over the Oilers (14-8) in the North. League-leading Toronto has a game in a hand. The Oilers are the hottest team on the entire circuit, riding a five-game winning streaking with victories in 11 of their last 13. WATCH | Week 6 roundup of the NHL's North Division: "We're obviously playing better," McDavid says. "Special teams have helped. Goaltending has helped. Everyone's buying in and starting to really believe. I think that's the main thing. When everyone believes in what we're doing, that's when it gets real dangerous." On the line: North Division supremacy. "A team like Edmonton has played as good or better than anybody in the league here the last while," says Toronto head coach Sheldon Keefe. "They've been picking up a lot of points here. 'But we feel like we've been going pretty well as a team here and it's still real close. You can't take any games or any days off and certainly this week, that's going to be the case going head-to-head." The series promises some amazing hockey featuring four of the top five most prolific offensive stars in the game. McDavid (14 goals, 40 points) leads the league in scoring. His Oiler teammate Leon Draisaitl is right behind in second (10 goals, 34 points.) WATCH | Connor McDavid earns 500th career point: Matthews is the league's top goal scorer (18) and tied for third in points with 31, but won't be suiting up in Saturday's game due to a lingering wrist injury, according to Keefe. Marner is fifth in league-scoring with 30 points. "They're a team with a lot of really, really good offensive weapons that can score at will if you give them time and space," Nurse says of the Leafs. "We want to check hard and not give free ice and free space to their creative players. "Because they will make you pay." Toronto defenceman Jake Muzzin feels the same about the McDavid and the Oilers. "You have to be aware when he's on the ice," Muzzin says. "You try to take away his speed, try to take away his time. You give him open ice and boom, he makes plays. And he's pretty good at it." WATCH | McDavid powers Oilers past Flames with 5 points: On defence, Nurse, for Edmonton, and Toronto's Morgan Rielly are two of the brightest stars in the game – with both in the conversation for inclusion on the Canadian Olympic team at the 2022 Beijing Winter Games. In goal, Jack Campbell should be ready to start for Toronto for the first time since injuring his leg last month against Montreal. Fiery veteran Mike Smith is splitting time with Mikko Koskinen in the net for Edmonton. At age 38, Smith is a perfect 6-0 to start the season after missing the first month due to injury. "I just really want to play well for this group," Smith says. "I feel like we've done a lot of good things this year to put us in a good spot right now, and I don't want that to slide away because of goaltending. "It's a mission I'm on." WATCH | I was in net for... Auston Matthews' 4-goal debut: In a season with no training camp, both the Leafs and the Oilers have established themselves as contenders. Now they get to see where they stand against the best. "We're going to have to be ready," Muzzin says. "They're a team that's firing right now. They've got good goaltending. Their defence is playing well, and their stars are playing hard. It's going to be a challenge." Let the puck drop.
(Submitted by David Voelker - image credit) Forty-three years ago, Dave Voelker spent two days walking 48 kilometres across a frozen Lake Erie. On Feb. 25, 1978, Voelker left Cleveland, Ohio by himself and was set on reaching Colchester, Ont. in the next 48 hours. On his back he carried all that he would need, including a tent, walkie talkie, and a tripod with a camera. "I knew it was frozen across I had to give it a shot, I'm a bit of an adventure junkie," Voelker told CBC Radio's Afternoon Drive host Chris dela Torre. He said the temperature that year had been below freezing for at least a month and to be certain the water was frozen through, he checked in with the coast guard. A frozen Lake Erie as photographed by Voelker. When he first started crossing he said he saw some ice fishers, but there eventually came a point of "absolutely nothing at all." LISTEN: Dave Voelker talks about what the journey across was like with host Chris dela Torre "I was in my element," he said. "I'm a bit of a loner to begin with and being in the middle of a frozen Great Lake is the ultimate alone time, you're just left alone on your thoughts and I just reflected on what I was doing." He said he wasn't really scared, but the adventure didn't come without its challenges. At one point he could tell an ice breaker had gone through the lake and it caused the ice to bunch up in odd places. He also had to check a compass to make sure he was headed in the right direction. Eventually he made it to the other side and said a family witnessed his arrival. They then invited him in for dinner. Voelker pitched up a tent one day into his hike across the lake. Upon arriving in Colchester, he said he was relieved because he was so tired. Afterwards he says he ended up hitchhiking back home and passed through Windsor to do so. Some people still don't believe that Voelker crossed the lake, but he says he hopes the photos are enough. "Even if people don't believe it I know that I did it," he said.
Health Canada announced its approval of two versions of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine Friday, and Dr. Joss Reimer said the province is ready and waiting on supply for deployment to clinics and pharmacies. "AstraZeneca is an important next step in our vaccine campaign because it is much easier to ship and to store as compared to the vaccines that we are currently using. It can be stored in the fridge, for example, and doesn’t require the low-temperature freezers that the other vaccines do," said Reimer, medical lead for the province’s vaccine implementation task force. "This will make it possible for people to be immunized in their doctor’s offices and in pharmacies in familiar settings, if that’s where they choose to do so." Reimer said the province has been planning for this eventuality, with 250 clinics and pharmacies that have gone through all the processes to be ready to go when the vaccine arrives. Another 500 clinics and pharmacies that have expressed interest are now in various stages of either the approval process or the logistics of becoming ready. "We encourage physicians and pharmacies who are interested and have not yet signed up to go to manitoba.ca/vaccine, where you can get some more information about how to register," said Reimer. While that is great news, Reimer also clarified the vaccine is not here, yet. "We’re waiting for more information from Health Canada about how many doses we will be receiving and when we can expect them. In the meantime, we are finalizing the eligibility criteria for this vaccine." The eligibility will be based on the task force’s analysis of the recommendations from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization, which has not yet been released. Reimer expects to have more details next week. Dr. Cory Baillie, president of Doctors Manitoba, weighed in by email. "This approval means Manitobans are one step closer to getting the vaccine from their doctor — a trusted medical professional who knows their health situation best," he said. "Physicians overwhelmingly trust and support the approved COVID-19 vaccines, including the version approved today. They are all safe and highly effective at preventing COVID-19, particularly severe illness, hospitalization and death. We recommend that nearly all Manitobans get immunized as soon as they become eligible." He did say it is natural for Manitobans to have questions, as these are new vaccines for a new disease. "Whether you’re eligible today or not, you can call your doctor to ask questions or discuss your concerns. We care about the health and well-being of Manitobans, and we want to support everyone on their personal vaccine journey," said Baillie. Reimer said AstraZeneca’s approval is great news for the province’s vaccination timeline and pushes it closer to the high-supply scenario planning. "As soon as we find out what Manitoba can be expecting, we will be adjusting our timelines and letting Manitobans know. Certainly, this is only good news as far as how long it will take to reach all Manitobans because the more options that we have, and the more convenient it is for people to receive a vaccine, the more Manitobans will be able to receive it before the end of summer," she said. However, Reimer added the task force would remain cautious because vaccine supply is always unpredictable. "I think we need to expect that we’ll see more supply disruptions at some point. So our system is trying to plan to have multiple mechanisms to reach Manitobans that can be flexible, depending on which vaccine we have available at what time." Also of note, the age of eligibility has dropped from 95 and older to 94, and for First Nations it has dropped to 74, due to available vaccine appointments. "Our team is going to continue to look at that every day," said Reimer. "Right now, our estimate would be that next week we’ll be able to reach people who are over 90." Michèle LeTourneau, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Brandon Sun
(Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press - image credit) It's been five years since the first refugees fleeing the Syrian civil war were welcomed to Canada. Since then, thousands of individuals and families have had to learn new languages, find jobs, and establish themselves in a society completely different from their own. CBC Radio's All Points West recently caught up with a few of the several hundred newcomers to Victoria to learn about their challenges and celebrate their accomplishments from the past few years. Sari Alesh, violinist: Sari Alesh stands with a few of his sponsors outside a small restaurant in the James Bay neighbourhood of Victoria, where they're celebrating the oath of Canadian citizenship Alesh took earlier that day. After five years in Victoria, he can finally call himself a Canadian. "I was waiting for this day for a long, long time," Alesh said, adding that he's built close relationships with all of his sponsor families over the years. "We are so proud of everything [Alesh has] accomplished in the last five years. This much!," said sponsor Heather Ferguson, her arms outstretched wide. Sari Alesh, a Syrian refugee and violinist, is reviving his musical career in his new home in Victoria. Back in Syria, Alesh was a classically-trained violinist with the Syrian National Symphony Orchestra. After arriving in Canada, he faced many challenges, such as learning English, and he worried about finding a space to continue his violin music. But with his sponsors' help, he soon began his own band called Sari Alesh and Friends, where he's also discovered his passion for "fiddle style" music, Alesh said. He's now completing courses at Cambria College so he can work with students who have special needs. "If I can include music as therapy, I will do that," he said. Sponsor Budd Hall said Alesh has a "remarkable gift with young children," and he's proud Alesh is pursuing this gift as a new Canadian citizen, while also keeping music in his life. Listen to Alesh's journey to becoming a Canadian: Mohamed Salem Ajaj and Marwa Ataya, grocery store owners: Mohamed Salem Ajaj and Marwa Ataya say they've been bringing members of Middle Eastern communities together since they opened Victoria's Damascus Food Market in 2019. "[Syrian] food was hard to get," Ajaj recalls. He says he would have to travel up to four hours to Vancouver to find food from home. "I wanted to open this business to help my community and my family," he said. Mohamed Salem Ajaj opened the Damascus Food Market in Victoria in 2018 with his Marwa Ataya. Ajaj and Ataya arrived in Victoria with their four young children in 2016. Ataya says the biggest challenge was learning English. Their sponsor families made settling in easy because "everything was ready," like a house to stay in, and at-home language lessons, she said. Ataya says while the couple misses their families back home, they plan to stay in Victoria, where "it's nice and quiet, [with] friendly people." She says their eldest son has recently started helping to run the store, and since opening, they've had a lot of community support. Listen to an interview with Mohamad Salem Ajaj and Marwa Ataya: Mohammad Rashid, Esquimalt High School student: Mohammad Rashid, 16, sits in a park next to his home, and recounts performing in a COVID-safe high school talent show a few weeks earlier. He pre-recorded a performance of a hip-hop song he'd written called All What I Wanted. In the video, he stands in an empty room, with a white hoodie over his head, lip-syncing to his own creation, which was professionally recorded in a music studio in Victoria. "Everyone was like, 'Oh, that song was fire'...'Keep it up,' 'I've added this to my playlist,'" said Rashid, recalling the students who approached him at the end of the school day. Syrian refugee Mohammad Rashid, 16, did not speak English when he arrived in Victoria with his mother, brother, and sister, in 2018. That has changed quickly, in part because of his love of music. Rashid said his peers are always surprised to learn he couldn't speak any English just three years ago, when he, his mother, sister and brother arrived from Syria. They're even more surprised to learn he only started writing, singing and recording music in English just over a year ago. "I definitely couldn't tell, with the way he delivers his vocals, and the storytelling in his songwriting," said Steve Kroeger, the music engineer who mixes Rashid's music. Rashid, whose stage name is Tiger M, says his songs reflect many aspects of his life in Syria, of love, and of being a teenager. Listen to the story of Rashid's passion for music, and how it's helped him settle into his new life in Canada:
A Lloydminster man and a Saskatoon woman arrested by RCMP for having a stolen vehicle were allegedly in possession of weapons for a dangerous purpose. Shaylean Dillon, 23, of Saskatoon, and Leyen Meesto, 37, of Lloydminster, Sask., were arrested Feb. 23 after Lloydminster RCMP got a call at about 6 p.m. about a stolen vehicle. Police kept an eye out for the vehicle and soon spotted it at a business on 18 Street in Lloydminster. RCMP towed the vehicle for a forensic examination but wouldn’t say what prompted them to do so. Dillon has been charged with possession of property obtained by crime, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, resisting/obstructing a peace officer and driving while prohibited. Meesto was charged with possession of property obtained by crime, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, resisting/obstructing a peace officer, failing to comply with a probation order and two counts of failing to comply with conditions of a release order. Meesto was remanded into custody and appears in Lloydminster, Alta., Provincial Court on March 2. Dillon was released and appears in Lloydminster Sask., Provincial Court on March 23. The charges against Dillon and Meesto haven’t been proven in court. Lisa Joy, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Battlefords Regional News-Optimist
Several schools in Ontario are already planning virtual graduation ceremonies for the class of 2021 as the pandemic makes in-person celebrations unlikely. While most high school graduations are still a few months away, some boards are already thinking about online events to mark the occasion that typically takes place in June. In Toronto, Canada's largest school board said it was expecting to have graduation ceremonies take place online but was giving individual schools some flexibility in the matter. "While graduation ceremonies will very likely be virtual again this year, we defer to local schools to develop an event that works best for them and their school communities," said Ryan Bird, spokesman for the Toronto District School Board. The Peel District School Board – which serves Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon – said it was planning virtual celebrations as well, but was also looking into having students accept their diplomas in a drive-by ceremony with social distancing measures in place. "In preparation for 2021 celebrations, we are in discussions about all potential landscapes within which these events might take place as the COVID-19 global health crisis continues to evolve," said board spokeswoman Tiffany Gooch. In June 2020, more than 10,000 people tuned in to watch a virtual celebration of Peel's graduating students – which featured performances by students and alumni, said Gooch. In Sudbury, Ont., one school board has already told parents upcoming graduations will be virtual. "Last year, we held out hope that we would be able to gather for traditional graduation ceremonies. With the ongoing pandemic, however, it simply was not possible and our schools hosted virtual ceremonies last fall," the Rainbow District School Board wrote in a recent letter to parents. "This year, we are accepting the reality sooner rather than later." The board said its schools "will go the extra mile" to make graduation memorable for students. Madeline Terzo, a Grade 12 student from Aurora, Ont., said teachers have told her class not to count on having an in-person ceremony this year as the pandemic shows no sign of ending by the summer. "It's not what I pictured. You walk into high school and you look towards your future, you look towards prom and graduation," said 17-year-old Terzo. "When you find out that it might be virtual, you won't get to wear that cap and gown, and throw your cap up, it's very upsetting." Terzo said her family is making plans to make her graduation day special in some way. "We're trying to be positive," she said. "But it's hard." This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 27, 2021. This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship. Denise Paglinawan, The Canadian Press
TORONTO — There's a new multi-millionaire in Ontario. The province's Lottery and Gaming Corporation says a ticket purchased in Sudbury, Ont., is the sole winner of the $70-million Lotto Max jackpot. The Friday draw marked the sixth time that the maximum jackpot has been won in Canada and the fourth time in the province since the cap was increased in May 2019. Maxmillions tickets worth $1 million each were also sold in the Ontario communities of Simcoe County, Mississauga, North York and Woodbridge. A Maxmillions ticket worth $500,000 was sold in Ajax, Ont. The next Lotto Max jackpot is estimated at $24 million, with a draw set for Tuesday night. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 27, 2021. The Canadian Press