Details with meteorologist Tyler Hamilton
Details with meteorologist Tyler Hamilton
The Burmese-Canadian community is calling on the federal government to provide more material support to anti-military protesters after a week that saw some of the deadliest clashes between police and demonstrators in Myanmar since the military coup in that country. The Burmese Canadian Action Network (BCAN) sent a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Foreign Minister Marc Garneau this week, just one day after police killed 18 people and wounded 30, according to the United Nations. "We, Burmese Canadians across Canada, are calling on the Government of Canada to provide tangible support for Burmese people struggling for freedom and democracy," the letter reads. The crisis began after Aung San Suu Kyi won a landslide re-election as state counsellor of Myanmar — a position equivalent to a prime minister -- on Nov. 8 last year. The military questioned the results, accusing the winning party of fraud, before seizing power and placing Suu Kyi and other senior members of her government under arrest on Feb. 1. Since then, dozens of protesters have died -- 34 on Wednesday alone -- at the hands of police and more than 1,000 civilians and elected officials have been arrested. Anti-coup protesters maintain their position behind a barricade despite smoke from tear gas in San Chaung township in Yangon, Myanmar, on Friday, Mar. 5, 2021. Demonstrators defy growing violence by security forces and stage more anti-coup protests ahead of a special UN Security Council meeting on the country’s political crisis.(The Associated Press) From pot-banging to protesters taking to the streets clad in hard-hats and goggles to protect themselves from assaults by police, the demonstrations are happening daily, in spite of bans on political protests and on social media. The letter to Trudeau and Garneau says Canada should take further action, including helping people who are now struggling with food scarcity. The civil unrest has caused major shutdowns in the country and interrupted the people's daily lives, especially those who joined the Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM). BCAN appealed to Canada to send food and material support via UN agencies and civil society organizations. "We encourage you to find ways to provide such essential assistance urgently," its letter reads. The letter also calls on Canada to officially recognize the Committee Representing Pyidaungsu Htaw (CRPH). The CRPH, which was created soon after the coup with the support of 400 elected MPs, combines the Lower and Upper Houses of Myanmar's parliament. Protesters hold up placards demanding the release of detained Myanmar civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi during a demonstration against the military coup in Naypyidaw on March 4, 2021 (AFP via Getty Images) According to Tin Maung Htoo, spokesperson for the BCAN, the CRPH is currently working underground in defiance of the police and supporting the demonstrators under the radar, by releasing information and making announcements to the public. "We are quite encouraged by the [Canadian] government's stand and this stand and actions from the government is very encouraging for people on the ground in Burma, especially," he said, referring to a move by Canada and Britain to impose economic sanctions on Myanmar. The two countries made the move under the Special Economic Measures Act on Feb 18 after police violence escalated against demonstrators. We don't want to go back 20, 30 years -- back to the dark age. That is why this is the time for us to do whatever we can. - Tin Maung Htoo Maung Htoo was a student when he fled Myanmar during in 1988 after organizing protests against the military dictatorship. "More than 3,000 people, mostly students, were killed in the streets," Maung Htoo recalled. "There was no freedom of expression, association, student unions were banned." The regime lasted over 20 years, finally ending when Myanmar achieved partial democracy in 2010. Tin Maung Htoo, with the Burmese Canadian Action Network, says the people of Myanmar 'are showing their strong stand and support for democratization in the country.'(Submitted by Tin Maung Htoo) Two years before the country opened itself to the world, the military wrote a new constitution, which allowed it to keep some of its former powers, including 25 per cent of seats in parliament and control of the defence, border affairs and home ministries. When the military moved to take power in February, General Min Aung Hlaing announced the removal of 24 democratically elected ministers, naming 11 replacements.. Maung Htoo said he believes the coup is an act of desperation. He said the the military was gradually losing not only political control under Suu Kyi's leadership but also economic power, since big business organizations are military-backed and military-owned. "People are showing their strong stand and support for democratization in the country." Maung Htoo said. "We don't want to go back 20, 30 years ... back to the dark age. That is why this is the time for us to do whatever we can."
The latest numbers on COVID-19 vaccinations in Canada as of 10:00 p.m. ET on Friday, March 5, 2021. In Canada, the provinces are reporting 85,376 new vaccinations administered for a total of 2,253,514 doses given. Nationwide, 561,238 people or 1.5 per cent of the population has been fully vaccinated. The provinces have administered doses at a rate of 5,946.061 per 100,000. There were 8,190 new vaccines delivered to the provinces and territories for a total of 2,622,210 doses delivered so far. The provinces and territories have used 85.94 per cent of their available vaccine supply. Please note that Newfoundland, P.E.I., Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and the territories typically do not report on a daily basis. Newfoundland is reporting 4,472 new vaccinations administered over the past seven days for a total of 24,757 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 47.279 per 1,000. In the province, 1.61 per cent (8,427) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Newfoundland for a total of 35,620 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 6.8 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 69.5 per cent of its available vaccine supply. P.E.I. is reporting 1,105 new vaccinations administered over the past seven days for a total of 13,281 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 83.724 per 1,000. In the province, 3.32 per cent (5,273) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to P.E.I. for a total of 14,715 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 9.3 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 90.25 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Nova Scotia is reporting 6,657 new vaccinations administered over the past seven days for a total of 38,676 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 39.631 per 1,000. In the province, 1.48 per cent (14,395) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Nova Scotia for a total of 61,980 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 6.4 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 62.4 per cent of its available vaccine supply. New Brunswick is reporting 7,424 new vaccinations administered over the past seven days for a total of 33,741 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 43.255 per 1,000. In the province, 1.56 per cent (12,142) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to New Brunswick for a total of 46,775 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 6.0 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 72.13 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Quebec is reporting 19,975 new vaccinations administered for a total of 510,479 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 59.659 per 1,000. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Quebec for a total of 638,445 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 7.5 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 79.96 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Ontario is reporting 35,886 new vaccinations administered for a total of 820,714 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 55.872 per 1,000. In the province, 1.83 per cent (269,063) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Ontario for a total of 903,285 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 6.1 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 90.86 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Manitoba is reporting 2,358 new vaccinations administered for a total of 84,937 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 61.682 per 1,000. In the province, 2.17 per cent (29,847) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were 8,190 new vaccines delivered to Manitoba for a total of 124,840 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 9.1 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 68.04 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Saskatchewan is reporting 2,789 new vaccinations administered for a total of 86,879 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 73.679 per 1,000. In the province, 2.37 per cent (27,945) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Saskatchewan for a total of 74,605 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 6.3 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 116.5 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Alberta is reporting 9,488 new vaccinations administered for a total of 275,719 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 62.634 per 1,000. In the province, 2.06 per cent (90,486) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Alberta for a total of 274,965 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 6.2 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 100.3 per cent of its available vaccine supply. British Columbia is reporting 12,357 new vaccinations administered for a total of 311,208 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 60.646 per 1,000. In the province, 1.69 per cent (86,865) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to British Columbia for a total of 385,080 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 7.5 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 80.82 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Yukon is reporting 1,279 new vaccinations administered for a total of 19,437 doses given. The territory has administered doses at a rate of 465.769 per 1,000. In the territory, 17.00 per cent (7,093) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Yukon for a total of 18,900 doses delivered so far. The territory has received enough of the vaccine to give 45 per cent of its population a single dose. The territory has used 102.8 per cent of its available vaccine supply. The Northwest Territories are reporting zero new vaccinations administered for a total of 19,775 doses given. The territory has administered doses at a rate of 438.285 per 1,000. In the territory, 10.10 per cent (4,558) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to the Northwest Territories for a total of 19,100 doses delivered so far. The territory has received enough of the vaccine to give 42 per cent of its population a single dose. The territory has used 103.5 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Nunavut is reporting 158 new vaccinations administered for a total of 13,911 doses given. The territory has administered doses at a rate of 359.216 per 1,000. In the territory, 13.28 per cent (5,144) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Nunavut for a total of 23,900 doses delivered so far. The territory has received enough of the vaccine to give 62 per cent of its population a single dose. The territory has used 58.21 per cent of its available vaccine supply. *Notes on data: The figures are compiled by the COVID-19 Open Data Working Group based on the latest publicly available data and are subject to change. Note that some provinces report weekly, while others report same-day or figures from the previous day. Vaccine doses administered is not equivalent to the number of people inoculated as the approved vaccines require two doses per person. The vaccines are currently not being administered to children under 18 and those with certain health conditions. In some cases the number of doses administered may appear to exceed the number of doses distributed as some provinces have been drawing extra doses per vial. This report was automatically generated by The Canadian Press Digital Data Desk and was first published March 5, 2021. The Canadian Press
Swimming Canada has announced the cancellation of multiple upcoming events, including the 2021 national championships. The organization made the announcement on Friday, citing the COVID-19 pandemic as the main concern. The 2021 Canadian masters swimming championships scheduled for May 21-23 in Quebec City, and the combined 2021 Canadian junior and senior swimming championships in Calgary July 26 to Aug. 2 have both been cancelled. Swimming Canada CEO Ahmed El-Awadi said in a release that the pandemic led to numerous reasons why the events couldn't be held, including health and safety concerns and the inability for many athletes to properly train this year due to restrictions. Swimming Canada says it will continue to evaluate its plans for the rest of the year as further decisions are announced by national, provincial and municipal government health authorities. "Sadly, we are making another announcement about cancelling events, which has become all too familiar over the past year. That said, it is once again done with the health and safety of our swimming community, and the wider community, at the forefront," said El-Awadi. "Due to the high number of participants expected at these events, it would not be possible to put the proper distancing protocols in place to ensure these events run safely. In addition, the amount of travel required to attend these events was a major factor in the decision." --- This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 5, 2021. The Canadian Press
Alberta’s COVID-19 vaccination program is being extended into pharmacies, but only in Calgary, Edmonton and Red Deer for now. All Albertans aged 75 and older can book an appointment to receive the COVID-19 vaccination. In addition to Alberta Health Services (AHS) sites, a list of participating pharmacies is available through the website of Alberta Blue Cross (ab.bluecross.ca). Appointments at participating pharmacies are starting this week. As more doses become available, more pharmacies will begin to offer the vaccine, including in more communities. “As the vaccine supply increases in the province, we look forward to expanding the program to include all community pharmacists in pharmacies across the province,” said Margaret Wing, Alberta Pharmacists’ Association CEO, in a Feb. 24 government news release. By providing flu and other vaccines in the past, pharmacies have the skills needed to safely provide COVID-19 vaccines, according to the government. Albertans are being encouraged to have both doses of vaccine at the same location, so any first doses booked at a community pharmacy will be followed by the second dose at the same place. The pharmacies must be called directly to book an appointment through them. Residents must select the pharmacy that is located closest to them. No walk-ins are permitted. Booking for vaccination at AHS sites can still be made online (albertahealthservices.ca) or by calling 811. On Feb. 25, the government announced more than 100,000 Alberta seniors and 22,000 other seniors in congregate care settings have booked for a vaccination appointment. Combined with the 28,000 seniors in long-term already vaccinated, over half of Alberta’s 75-plus population either have already been vaccinated or are scheduled to receive a first dose. Sean Feagan, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Strathmore Times
Pope Francis is on a historic visit to Iraq despite the global pandemic. After a year of laying low in Vatican City, he's resumed his travels with a message of unity for a country ravaged by religious violence.
VANCOUVER — A British Columbia Supreme Court judge has reserved his decision on a request from three churches to throw out provincial health orders that prevent them from holding in-person services. Chief Justice Christopher Hinkson said Friday he doesn't want to delay unnecessarily and he appreciates the urgency of the matter from the petitioners' point of view, but he must give the case careful thought. "You've presented me with very difficult issues to resolve and I will take the time necessary to try and resolve those issues fairly." Hinkson gave no date on when he would release his decision. Jacqueline Hughes, a lawyer for B.C.'s attorney general, told the court the orders by provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry do not single out or ban all in-person religious services and Henry has invited exemption requests. The petitioners include the Riverside Calvary Chapel in Langley, Immanuel Covenant Reformed Church in Abbotsford and the Free Reformed Church of Chilliwack. Hughes said the churches are now permitted to hold in-person services of up to 25 people, outdoors and with safety measures in place, through a "variance" to Henry's orders granted late last month. Individual worship and drive-in events are also permitted under the orders, subject to conditions, she said, while weddings, funerals and baptisms may include no more than 10 guests. Henry has the statutory powers during an emergency to issue orders she reasonably believes are necessary to prevent and mitigate further harm from a health hazard, including restricting entry to a place, said Hughes. The province's top doctor has made efforts to consult faith leaders while weighing their charter rights against data about COVID-19 cases in B.C. and explaining her reasoning in public briefings and in writing, she said. Paul Jaffe, legal counsel for the petitioners, has argued Henry's orders reflect a value judgment. On Friday, he said his clients have been subjected to discriminatory treatment compared with other groups. Orthodox Jewish synagogues were granted variances to hold indoor services on the Sabbath around the time Henry and the attorney general sought an injunction to stop his clients from worshipping in person, Jaffe said. Hinkson dismissed the province's injunction application last month, saying the provincial health officer has means under the Public Health Act to enforce the rules without a court order. Jaffe told the court on Friday there has been no change in the degree to which Henry's orders arbitrarily infringe on his clients' charter right to freedom of religion from the time they were made last November to now. "All the Crown has been able to show you are the opinions of Dr. Henry," he said. "But opinions aren't evidence. You need cogent, persuasive evidence to justify those opinions and there simply isn't any." He told the court earlier this week that his clients have adopted safety measures similar to those approved by the provincial health officer in places that remain open. Jaffe works with the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, a Calgary-based legal advocacy group that's also asking the court to dismiss tickets of up to $2,300 each for alleged violations of the public health orders. Hughes told the court on Friday "there's no absolute rule that constitutionally protected interests must be preferred to those that are just pressing and substantial" in matters such as the petition at hand. The only requirements, she said, are that any balance struck is reasonable, that "sincere religious practice" is accommodated where possible, and that religious and non-religious beliefs are treated neutrally. "We say Dr. Henry understood these requirements and applied them to best of her ability," Hughes told Hinkson. Henry's mandate to protect public health is a balancing exercise, she said, and "charter rights do not trump the public health mandate that she has and is continuing to exercise over the course of this pandemic." This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 5, 2021. This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship. Brenna Owen, The Canadian Press
The Township of McMurrich/Monteith received correspondence from several municipalities on the closure of the Ontario Fire College. McMurrich/Monteith council discussed whether they would draft a resolution similar to other municipalities in support of saving the fire college from closure. Here is the discussion in key quotes: • “It would be great to save the college, but I think they’ve drawn their line in the sand,” said Coun. Lynn Zemnicky. • “The college is losing money on it,” said Coun. Dennis Banka, in regard to the $65 cost per course. • “Every ratepayer is paying for that and I understand what the issues are around that … but if we send five people there and another municipality sends 100, then we’re subsidizing that 100 because we’re only sending five. So, the numbers to me don’t play out. I can’t see why as a ratepayer in a municipality I would want to subsidize another municipality for something,” said Coun. Alfred Bielke. • “I’m not denying that the fire college rates down there more than likely need to be adjusted, but I think the government shouldn’t be closing it down and asking us to come up with thousands of dollars just to train our volunteer firefighters,” said Coun. Dan O’Halloran. • “If they get their costs more realistic to what it actually costs to train a person, I’ve got no problem with it, but I think these other programs that we’re being forced into is going to cost us a fortune. I’m not seeing we’re going to get anything better out of it,” said O’Halloran. McMurrich/Monteith unanimously passed a resolution in support of saving the Ontario Fire College. Sarah Cooke’s reporting is funded by the Canadian government through its Local Journalism Initiative. Sarah Cooke, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, muskokaregion.com
Ulukhaktok, N.W.T. residents are hunkering down at home as they face a blizzard, but thankfully, their internet has been restored. "This the longest [internet outage] it's been," said Ulukhaktok Mayor Joshua Oliktoak. "I guess it was getting hard for some people, so I'm very thankful that it was resolved so people are able to get what they need before they have to stay in … everything is shut-down except for the stores." The internet was in and out for nearly eight days before Northwestel fixed the issue Thursday evening, the company confirmed. It said a "technical issue" had caused "internet network congestion" in the community. Residents had been trying to alert the company to the internet problem, but, said a Northwestel spokesperson, during the outage period "data was still flowing in and out of the community and we did not fully realize the impact it was having on customers." The internet outage was so widespread that it even affected residents' ability to pay for groceries and gas. Oliktoak said Friday afternoon that the internet returning meant community members could pick up groceries and supplies before the blizzard got too bad. "We are fortunate it got fixed before the weekend," said Oliktoak. "Right now it's real bad. Some people can't see across the road."
A local family with deep ties to the Rockyford area is being honoured for best representing the values of the family farm within their rural community. Gordon and Darlene Koester and family, with Koester Cattle Co. Inc., was a recipient of the BMO Farm Family Award, presented by the Calgary Stampede and BMO Bank of Montreal. This awards program was created to promote a renewed urban-rural relationship and to recognize outstanding southern Alberta farm families who best typify the value of the family farmer to society. The Koester’s local ties started in 1928, when the family moved from Iowa to Rockyford. Joe, one of nine children, and his wife, Tillie, purchased their own farmstead in 1950, raising eight children. Their son Gordon and his wife Darlene took over the family farm and raised four children. Sons Matthew and Adam became an integral part of the family farm operation, but in 2015, they decided to pursue their off-farm careers on a full-time basis. Bradie, one of the couple’s two daughters, and her husband, Dan, then jumped at the opportunity to come home and farm, and are now at the helm of the operation. The family winning the award was a surprise, said Gordon, in an interview. “I was taken back by the nomination, thinking there’s a lot of deserving people out there,’ he said. “I was humbled to be chosen, that’s for sure.” The Koesters have been an integral part of their community. Gordon is the past president of the Rockyford Lions Club and past chairman of the Rockyford Agricultural Society, Hall Board, Curling Club, Parish Council, Knights of Columbus and Minor Hockey, and is also a 25- year member of the Seed Growers Association. Darlene helped establish ringette in the Rockyford Community 30 years ago, and was a coach and manager throughout the years while her daughters played. She was also the Rockyford Rodeo secretary for 25 years in addition to driving a school bus for three decades. Dan and Bradie belong to the Rockyford Minor Hockey and Ringette Association as coaches and board members, in addition to Rockyford’s Ag Society, Lions Club, Rodeo Committee, Parish Council and Knights of Columbus. They also coach their girls’ fastball teams as well as play ringette and hockey on adult teams. Dan belongs to the Strathmore Seed Cleaning Plant and is entering his second year as chairman. Being established for multiple generations has helped the Koesters make such an impact in their community, said Gordon. “My father and mother taught us to be part of the community and make sure things work,” he said. “We’re a small enough community that everybody can take a turn.” Sean Feagan, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Strathmore Times
Le fait de mettre moins en avant le drapeau franco-albertain au mois de mars est le symbole d’un autre recul. Mars marque le Mois de la francophonie en Alberta. Une occasion de célébrer le fait francophone aux quatre coins de la province. Pourtant, cette communauté continue de voir certains de ses acquis reculer. Voir flotter durant un mois entier le drapeau franco-albertain devant le parlement de la province peut sembler anodin, quand on vit en milieu linguistique majoritaire. Mais en milieu minoritaire, c’est une preuve de reconnaissance publique, une prérogative difficilement obtenue qui contribue à la visibilité de la francophonie. Si le mois de mars est considéré comme une fête en Alberta, où prestations musicales, activités, concours et jeux linguistiques animent le calendrier des francophones en ces temps de COVID-19, il reste tout de même une ombre au tableau. Pour une deuxième année consécutive, le drapeau franco-albertain flottera moins d’un jour au-dessus du parlement au lieu d’un mois, comme l’avait décidé en 2017 l’ancien gouvernement néodémocrate. « Il est relayé au même statut que les autres drapeaux, comme le drapeau du Jour des bénévoles ou bien le drapeau LGBTQ, au lieu d’être traité comme un emblème officiel de la province », déplore Annie McKitrick, ancienne députée sous ce gouvernement de Rachel Notley (2015-2019). L’organisme porte-parole de la province, l’Association canadienne-française de l’Alberta (ACFA), n’avait pas été informé à l’avance par l’actuel gouvernement conservateur d’un tel changement. Le drapeau franco-albertain a perdu le privilège obtenu il y a quatre ans, à la suite de l’adoption en 2019 d’un protocole limitant la durée des drapeaux hissés à une journée pour chacun d’eux. Le bureau de Leela Aheer, ministre de la Culture, du Multiculturalisme et de la Condition féminine et responsable du Secrétariat francophone, avait alors répondu que c’était pour « assurer la cohérence et l’équité » parmi ces derniers. Le drapeau franco-albertain est ainsi devenu un drapeau comme tous les autres. « Les acquis ne sont jamais éternels », affirme Victor Moke Ngala, président de Francophonie albertaine plurielle (FRAP). « Je pense que c’est un recul par rapport à la promesse de l’ancien gouvernement. Tout dépend du gouvernement qui arrive, ça peut tout changer. C’est ce que nous sommes en train de voir et c’est vraiment dommage », exprime-t-il avec regret. Cet épisode n’est pas sans rappeler la suppression, en 2017, de la Direction de l’éducation française, établie alors depuis presque 40 ans au sein du ministère de l’Éducation provincial. Elle était chargée de gérer l’éducation en français en Alberta. Là encore, une décision a été prise unilatéralement par le gouvernement, cette fois-ci néodémocrate, et ce, dans la plus grande indifférence. « C’était une voix collective pour les francophones et les programmes d’immersion au ministère de l’Éducation », rappelle Élisa Corsi, la responsable des communications de l’Alberta Teachers’ Association (ATA). Aujourd’hui, cette voix est diluée, rapporte-t-elle. « Les représentants francophones se trouvent éparpillés dans différents départements à travers le ministère de l’Éducation, composés majoritairement d’anglophones. » À l’époque, l’ATA avait fait des démarches auprès du ministère de l’Éducation par l’entremise d’un conseil de spécialistes, le Conseil français, afin de demander quelle serait la répercussion de ce changement sur les enseignants francophones et d’immersion. Aujourd’hui, le Conseil français de l’ATA attend toujours. « Nous n’avons jamais reçu de réponse à ce sujet », déclare au Devoir Mme Corsi. Si l’existence de la Direction de l’éducation française avait perduré, cette dernière aurait pu être à la table des négociations afin de faire entendre la voix des francophones lors de la refonte des programmes scolaires en octobre dernier. Cette question avait soulevé le courroux des Franco-Albertains, indignés par la série de recommandations où l’histoire et la perspective franco-albertaines étaient quasiment absentes du programme proposé par le Parti conservateur. En ce qui concerne le niveau postsecondaire, la ministre fédérale des Langues officielles, Mélanie Joly, a annoncé cette semaine qu’elle mettait 3,7 millions de dollars sur la table, à condition que le gouvernement provincial propose un partenariat financier pour soutenir les besoins du Campus Saint-Jean. Pour Valérie Lapointe Gagnon, qui y est professeure agrégée d’histoire et de droits linguistique, il n’y a jamais eu une grande reconnaissance de la francophonie dans l’espace public. « Les francophones se battent constamment pour que le patrimoine soit reconnu, tant au provincial qu’au municipal. Les gouvernements se sont battus contre les francophones dans toutes les causes juridiques les concernant. On l’a vu récemment avec les frais juridiques payés (1,5 million de dollars) par le gouvernement Kenney dans le cas concernant Saint-Jean », conclut-elle. Hélène Lequitte, Initiative de journalisme local, Le Devoir
The Caledon Seniors Centre is going forward with their much-anticipated expansion that will ensure more space and opportunities for events, programs and future growth. The team is looking forward to seeing an expansion of roughly 9,000 square feet, which includes additional rooms for programs and events, and a brand-new commercial kitchen that will be able to serve 250 or more people. The non-profit organization began as a space for seniors to come and enjoy various programs and social, educational and cultural events. With the expansion of the building comes expansion of these programs for more residents to join. The centre is run by a team of staff and dedicated volunteers and has over 800 registered members. After celebrating their 25th anniversary, the centre has kickstarted it’s largest fundraising campaign. “Since 2018 we have added five satellite locations to expand our reach and keep up with the growth in our membership. Our Expansion Fundraising Campaign is an aggressive initiative to raise funds to expand the Rotary Place facility. Our fundraising campaign is the beginning of wonderful and exciting things to come for our Seniors. We will be able to offer more programs and better accommodate this rapidly growing segment of Caledon’s population.” With the help of the Caledon community, the Caledon Seniors Centre’s expansion fundraiser is working towards raising a whopping amount of $1 million over the next three years. The campaign began with the generous donations of $10,000 from the Palgrave Orange Lodge, and $5,000 from the 100 Women Who Care Caledon. Following these donations came an additional $5,000, where the board of directors made remaining contributions, in order to raise $25,000 in the exact month they celebrated 25 years. Funding has also been provided by the Rotary Club in Bolton and Palgrave, the Bolton Lions, the Bolton Kin, as well as the Town of Caledon and grants from the Provincial government. “The seniors, 55 Plus, are the fastest growing segment in our community. It’s expanding rapidly and we have a database of members already, but the opportunity is to increase that ten or 20-fold to meet the exact needs of the community,” said long-time volunteer on the Board of Directors, John Rogers. “The expansion is to give us more capabilities to reach out to more individuals an provide these health and wellness services and programs for that fast growing and increasing community of seniors.” The COVID-19 pandemic has provided challenges with getting the expansion up and going, but the team at Caledon Seniors Centre are hopeful to see shovels in the ground this coming spring. Yet the pandemic hasn’t stopped the work they put into not only the centre, but within the community. “COVID- 19 has had a considerable impact on how we support our members. In addition to offering masks, grocery pick-up and delivery, we have added virtual programming including online card games, bingo, speaker series, trivia fun games, social conference calls, Zoom call activities like exercise, meditation, virtual crafts and karaoke. We’ve recently added take-out lunch and dinners to our services,” said CSC Manager Beverley Nurden. “We are doing our best to keep this vital fellowship connection going for our seniors.” The staff and volunteers at the Caledon Seniors Centre are encouraging members who would like to help out, to consider volunteering or making a donation. For further information, please visit caledonseniors.ca. Alyssa Parkhill, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Caledon Citizen
Booking a provincial campsite is a high-stakes venture — like getting a front row seat to a concert. Everyone goes in with a plan, refreshing and calling furiously just to snag a coveted spot. And now, some worry about another parallel: campsite scalpers. Alberta Parks acknowledged the concern Friday on its social media channels after receiving several reports and complaints from campers. "We're committed to ensuring access to camping in Alberta Parks is fair and equitable," read a statement from Alberta Environment and Parks. While the ministry told CBC News that reselling is rare, it has posted a reminder on social media because it's something it wants to prevent. "We had some social media followers reach out to us today saying there were a couple of resale ads online," the Facebook post says. "We ask Albertans if they see any ads or posts attempting to resell reservations to call our Contact Centre at 1 (877) 537-2757. We will cancel the reservations of those trying to resell their campsites." By the time staff were able to look into reports, the solicitations had already been pulled, Parks told CBC. For many, May long weekend is the kickoff of camping season in Alberta. They take a chance on spring weather to secure a spot. With all the competition, it can be tough to land a site that weekend. Camping enthusiast Lisa Gabruck said she's already seen at least one for sale on Facebook groups. "The non-refundable reservation fee is too low at the moment," Gabruck said. "Most resellers are willing to take the hit as they will make it back on other sites they are reselling." According to the Alberta Parks website, changing a reservation costs $5, the campsite reservation fee is $12 and non-refundable. 'I have an extra site' Last year, Nathan Larson missed out on reservations and saw upselling behaviour first hand. He wanted a site and messaged a couple of people advertising provincial sites for sale. He said they were looking for $20 to $30 on top of the typical cost of the site. This year, he's turned to private sites to avoid the hassle and the crowds. But on opening day this week, Larson was curious if the Alberta Parks reservation system had improved this year. He hopped on Facebook groups to see what campers were saying. What he saw on some social media groups was frustrating. "I kept seeing people saying, 'I have an extra site here, I have an extra site there,'" Larson said. "It just seemed a little odd you would spend all this time and effort, frustration, to book multiple sites and immediately go online and try to offload them." Booking should be fair, says camper Opening day 2021 produced 23,830 bookings by the end of the day, compared with 11,628 reservations for last year's opening. By Friday at 1:30 p.m., there were 27,538 bookings. This flood of activity came with issues. Alberta Parks' reservation site crashed, and people were repeatedly told to be patient. Larson isn't sure how the reservation system can improve, but it's frustrating enough for him to avoid the provincial park system altogether. "It's supposed to be a fair site for everybody to use," he said. Alberta Parks says there has been a surge in demand over the past couple of years — people aren't able to book vacations so they are exploring parks instead.(CBC) When she first moved to Alberta from Ontario years ago, Tamara Higgins said she was surprised at how difficult it can be to get a provincial campsite. She has also decided to primarily book through private campgrounds because of repeated issues and frustrations. The problem, Higgins said, is a complicated combination of a poor booking system, desperation to get a site, and little enforcement of the rules. Higgins doesn't believe people are making extra cash from the practice. Many, she thinks, are prone to overbook to secure a spot for themselves and a group before their plans have firmed up, and sometimes plans change, or life happens. The overbooking then leads to those who genuinely want a site for a certain time and date missing out, and those who have sites to spare with a place to make an arrangement. "Because of the rush to book, they just book a whole bunch and then they start selling them off as they realize they are not able to go," Higgins said. In the past, despite the warnings that sites aren't transferable, Higgins said she's been able to pick up a stranger's reservation. Alberta Parks told CBC News there has been a surge in demand over the past couple of years — people aren't able to book vacations so they are exploring parks instead. "We encourage those who aren't able to use their sites to please let us know because there are a lot of people who could use them," read the statement from Alberta Environment and Parks. "Albertans can get a full refund, minus the reservation fee, three days ahead of their arrival date."
VANCOUVER — Dentists, teachers and bus drivers are among the essential workers who hope to receive the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine in British Columbia, as a provincial committee decides who should be prioritized for the shot. BC Teachers' Federation president Teri Mooring said her members should be included in the plan expected to be released by the B.C. Immunization Committee around March 18. Education staff have had the second-highest number of COVID-19 claims accepted by WorkSafeBC, behind only health-care workers, and teachers have faced challenging conditions, Mooring said. "It's been a very difficult and stressful environment for teachers in B.C.," she said Friday. "Teachers have not, from the very start, been satisfied with the preventative measures that have been in place in classrooms. What we see is one of the most lax mask policies in all of Canada." The province does not require elementary students to wear masks, unlike in Ontario and high-risk areas of Quebec. B.C.'s provincial health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, has said young children don't get as sick from COVID-19 or pass it on as well as others. Henry has said the immunization committee will use public health principles, vaccine science and an ethical framework to reach its decision on which essential workers and first responders should receive the AstraZeneca vaccine. Once the plan is finalized, the vaccine will be administered in a parallel program to the province's age-based strategy for the Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines. Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix said in a joint statement Friday that the newly approved Johnson & Johnson vaccine will become another tool in its program to accelerate the protection of more people in the province. The officials reported 634 new cases and four more fatalities, pushing the death toll to 1,380 in B.C. Four new cases were confirmed to be variants of concern, bringing the total to 250. The BC Dental Association said in a statement it would be "extremely pleased" if its members were included in the group to receive the Oxford-AstraZeneca shot. Dentists and their teams cannot treat patients remotely, work in very close proximity to the mouth and often use aerosol-generating procedures, it said. The association also pointed out that dentists, dental hygienists and certified dental assistants are included in Henry's recent order to help administer the vaccines. "We would expect that any dentist choosing to participate in mass vaccination clinics would be required to have been vaccinated themselves prior to providing them," it said. Balbir Mann, president of Unifor Local 111, which represents Metro Vancouver bus drivers, said his members should receive the vaccine because they have been at risk throughout the pandemic. "When people get on the bus to pay their bus fare, they're literally a couple feet away. Our members, day to day, they're scared of the sneezes and coughs they have to deal with on a daily basis." Henry has suggested that workers in food processing plants will be prioritized because there have been a number of outbreaks in the facilities that have led to broader community transmission. James Donaldson, CEO of BC Food and Beverage, said his organization has been advocating for food production workers to receive priority access to vaccines since they became available. "Our industry is essential as it ensures the continuity of the food supply for people in B.C. and around the world," he said. Kim Novak, president of United Food and Commercial Workers Canada Local 1518, represents food plant workers including those at Grand River Foods in Abbotsford who recently grappled with a COVID-19 outbreak. "It's because of the nature of the work. People are working in close proximity. Even with enhanced (personal protective equipment), staggering breaks and other health and safety protocols that have been implemented, there is still a high level of exposure," she said. Novak's union also represents grocery store workers and she hopes they will be included in the plan for the vaccine. "In grocery stores in particular, there is a lot of exposure to different people in the public," she said. "That exposure not only is a risk for our members ... but also the public who interact with them." BC Trucking Association president Dave Earle, meanwhile, said his group represents both long-haul truckers and local drivers who return home every night. He wants to hear from the province about where the COVID-19 hot spots are in the transportation system. For example, in B.C., there are 300,000 people with a Class 1 licence allowing them to operate a semi-trailer truck, Earle said. "Not everybody with a Class 1 licence operates a heavy truck at the moment and many of those who do don't do it in an environment where they're at any greater risk than you and I just going about our daily lives," he said. In some European countries, people have been hesitant to receive the AstraZeneca shot because of fears it is less effective than the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. Canada's National Advisory Committee on Immunization has also not recommended AstraZeneca for people over 65, while Health Canada has approved it for all adults. Henry sought on Thursday to assure essential workers that the AstraZeneca vaccine is extremely effective. The clinical trials for all three vaccines were done under different conditions and cannot be fairly compared, she said. The groups representing essential workers said Friday they hadn't heard any concerns about the AstraZeneca shot from members. Earle said his association takes guidance from public health officials and they've been abundantly clear. "Whatever you're offered, take it. Let's get out of this." This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 5, 2021. Laura Dhillon Kane, The Canadian Press
The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 9:15 p.m. ET on Friday, March 5, 2021. There are 881,761 confirmed cases in Canada. _ Canada: 881,761 confirmed cases (30,146 active, 829,423 resolved, 22,192 deaths).*The total case count includes 13 confirmed cases among repatriated travellers. There were 3,370 new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 79.32 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 20,214 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 2,888. There were 41 new reported deaths Friday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 277 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is 40. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.1 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 58.39 per 100,000 people. There have been 24,938,790 tests completed. _ Newfoundland and Labrador: 1,003 confirmed cases (117 active, 880 resolved, six deaths). There was one new case Friday. The rate of active cases is 22.41 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there has been 27 new case. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is four. There were zero new reported deaths Friday. Over the past seven days there has been one new reported death. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is zero. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.03 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 1.15 per 100,000 people. There have been 200,703 tests completed. _ Prince Edward Island: 139 confirmed cases (24 active, 115 resolved, zero deaths). There was one new case Friday. The rate of active cases is 15.04 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there has been 18 new case. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is three. There have been no deaths reported over the past week. The overall death rate is zero per 100,000 people. There have been 110,916 tests completed. _ Nova Scotia: 1,651 confirmed cases (31 active, 1,555 resolved, 65 deaths). There were two new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 3.17 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 17 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is two. There have been no deaths reported over the past week. The overall death rate is 6.64 per 100,000 people. There have been 356,686 tests completed. _ New Brunswick: 1,447 confirmed cases (34 active, 1,385 resolved, 28 deaths). There were four new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 4.35 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 19 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is three. There were zero new reported deaths Friday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of two new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is zero. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.04 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 3.58 per 100,000 people. There have been 240,032 tests completed. _ Quebec: 291,175 confirmed cases (7,290 active, 273,430 resolved, 10,455 deaths). There were 798 new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 85.02 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 5,030 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 719. There were 10 new reported deaths Friday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 83 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is 12. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.14 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 121.93 per 100,000 people. There have been 6,397,936 tests completed. _ Ontario: 306,007 confirmed cases (10,378 active, 288,583 resolved, 7,046 deaths). There were 1,250 new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 70.44 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 7,438 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,063. There were 22 new reported deaths Friday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 102 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is 15. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.1 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 47.82 per 100,000 people. There have been 11,082,737 tests completed. _ Manitoba: 32,104 confirmed cases (1,133 active, 30,067 resolved, 904 deaths). There were 53 new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 82.15 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 385 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 55. There was one new reported death Friday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 15 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is two. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.16 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 65.54 per 100,000 people. There have been 539,166 tests completed. _ Saskatchewan: 29,432 confirmed cases (1,507 active, 27,532 resolved, 393 deaths). There were 212 new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 127.85 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 1,088 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 155. There were two new reported deaths Friday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 13 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is two. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.16 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 33.34 per 100,000 people. There have been 584,905 tests completed. _ Alberta: 135,196 confirmed cases (4,639 active, 128,644 resolved, 1,913 deaths). There were 411 new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 104.91 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 2,408 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 344. There were two new reported deaths Friday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 36 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is five. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.12 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 43.26 per 100,000 people. There have been 3,434,748 tests completed. _ British Columbia: 83,107 confirmed cases (4,975 active, 76,752 resolved, 1,380 deaths). There were 634 new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 96.64 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 3,767 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 538. There were four new reported deaths Friday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 25 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is four. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.07 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 26.81 per 100,000 people. There have been 1,959,060 tests completed. _ Yukon: 72 confirmed cases (zero active, 71 resolved, one deaths). There were zero new cases Friday. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of zero new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is zero. There have been no deaths reported over the past week. The overall death rate is 2.38 per 100,000 people. There have been 8,216 tests completed. _ Northwest Territories: 42 confirmed cases (one active, 41 resolved, zero deaths). There were zero new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 2.21 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of zero new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is zero. There have been no deaths reported over the past week. The overall death rate is zero per 100,000 people. There have been 14,790 tests completed. _ Nunavut: 373 confirmed cases (17 active, 355 resolved, one deaths). There were four new cases Friday. The rate of active cases is 43.2 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 17 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is two. There have been no deaths reported over the past week. The overall death rate is 2.54 per 100,000 people. There have been 8,819 tests completed. This report was automatically generated by The Canadian Press Digital Data Desk and was first published March 5, 2021. The Canadian Press
A motion to share costs on a road project with the Rural Municipality of Prince Albert to upgrade a part of 48th Street East was defeated during Prince Albert City Council’s Executive Committee meeting on Monday. Surface Works Manager Marcel Gareau recommended that the proposal be moved to future budget deliberations after Marquis Road is upgraded between Central Avenue and 4th Avenue East. The focus on Marquis Road upgrades was a contentious issue with council in making their decision. In his report to council, Gareau emphasized that upgrading that section of road was listed as a high priority in the 2017 Transportation Master Plan. The two options were to include the 48th Street upgrade in the 2022 budget or decline it. Mayor Greg Dionne made the motion to decline the proposal. “I’m still confused. We have a request from the RM, so I expect administration to come back with a report denying the request for cost sharing because there is no positive benefit for us,” Dionne said during the meeting. “I don’t want to talk about Marquis Road. I am here today to talk about 48th Street. We have a request, I read it, from the RM about cost sharing. (Administration) has just told us there is no benefit, so the recommendation should be that we notify the RM (that) at this point we are not prepared to cost share (for) the road.” Dionne said that the discussion was over after Gareau explained that no benefit for the city existed at this time. “We are not twinning Marquis from Central to Fourth I don’t know why the department keeps bringing that up. So I am here to deal with 48th Street and I just heard from him now that there is no benefit so the request from the RM be denied at this time,” Dionne said. Ward 5 Coun. Dennis Ogrodnick disagreed with Dionne on the substance of the upgrade on Marquis but agreed on the denial of the proposal. He explained that the project on Marquis should be undertaken at a latr date. “I don’t see any advantage in spending money on that particular upgrade when we have Elevator Road, which is in the RM, that I see is a primary grid and then we have Marquis Road which also goes east west,” Ogrodnick said. Ward 6 Coun. Blake Edwards also did not support the original motion because it was tied to Marquis Road. He understood the idea but did not see a reason to link the two. “I do have some concerns about upgrading 48th and spending money on it and I think that it can be addressed today,” Edwards said. Edwards asked what the purpose of upgrading 48th Street East would be at this time. “From the administration point of view there is no reason to upgrade 48th street at this time because we already have the infrastructure to handle the traffic volume,” Gareau said. In the report it explained that the upgrade to four lanes of that section of Marquis Road was unfunded in the 2021 budget and remains a priority for administration. The report states that upgrading 48th Street for use by heavy trucks as an alternate route does not solve the main issue of the bottleneck on Marquis Road. Marquis Road needs to be upgraded to support growth in the West Hill, Crescent Acres and the new recreation centre project, administration said. According to the report, the pavement condition on Marquis Road at that section in currently poor. The RM has hired a consultant who recommended that the street be built to primary grid heavy haul standards and that the right-of-way be widened. The report explained that the city of Prince Albert has no plans to expand into the area. The main developments are in the West Hill and Crescent Heights and expected to continue for at least 20 years. RM of Prince Albert Reeve Eric Schmalz was disappointed, but respected council’s decision. “The city has some budgetary commitments that they need to meet before they can pursue partnership with the RM apparently, so we respect that and we look forward to discussing it with them in the future,” Schmalz said. “We are still in a relationship. They are our partners in the region and we need to focus on the entire relationship, not just on one particular aspect. I think that we can still move forward beyond this.” Schmalz said the RM has other projects to focus on, like the construction of a new shop and office, and the building of other roads. The total cost of the project is estimated at $371,000. It would have been split to $185,500 each for the RM and city under the proposal. The proposal would have seen RM equipment and labour used during construction. The idea dates back to Nov. 5, 2019, when the RM sent a letter to the Mayor’s Office requesting joint funding for the upgrade. In March, 2020 the proposal was declined and sent to 2021 budget deliberations. The RM sent a letter updating the proposal to city council. In December 2020, executive committee moved that the report from administration be prepared by Public Works. Michael Oleksyn, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince Albert Daily Herald
OTTAWA — Cole Maier had a pair of goals as the Manitoba Moose downed the Belleville Senators 3-1 on Friday in American Hockey League play. Mikhail Berdin made 21 saves to help Manitoba halt a four-game slide. C.J Suess also scored for the Moose (5-6-0), AHL affiliate of the Winnipeg Jets. Cody Goloubef found the back of the net for the Senators (1-5-0), who have dropped three straight games. Filip Gustavsson stopped 24-of-26 shots for the Ottawa Senators' AHL affiliate. --- This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 5, 2021. The Canadian Press
A Strathmore resident who came to Canada as a refugee from Syria has opened a new barbershop in the downtown core. Sam Al-Mubaied, together with business partner Ahmad Asheti, have opened the Strathmore Barbershop, located in the Strathmore Centre. A grand opening celebration was held on March 1, attended by Strathmore Mayor Pat Fule and Councillors Bob Sobol and Denise Peterson, along with other members of the community. The opening culminates Al-Mubaied’s relocation to Canada with his wife and family from Damascus, Syria in 2016 because of the Syrian civil war. “We weren’t safe there, especially the kids, so we had to leave,” he said. The Hope Community Covenant Church, along with five sponsors, helped Al-Mubaied and his family settle in Strathmore. Since then, Al-Mubaied and his family have adjusted to life here. “I love Strathmore – I feel like it’s my own town and my own community,” he said. “We’re so happy to be safe here.” The business has been ready to open for a few months, but was delayed by COVID-19 public health measures. So, Al-Mubaied took a “wait and see” approach to opening while many businesses were closed. But with personal and wellness businesses services open again (by appointment), Al-Mubaied decided the time was right to launch the new business venture. Like other barbers and hairdressers in town, Al-Mubaied will be working within the confines of COVID-19 protocols. “We’re working under the government’s rules,” he said. Al-Mubaied has been cutting hair for over 10 years and does not think his approach to the craft will be much different than in Syria. “Hair is hair, but every year, there are new styles,” he said. “I’m so excited to start serving the people of Strathmore.” At the reopening, Fule said that having businesses downtown, such as the Strathmore Barbershop, being successful is important to Strathmore’s downtown revitalization. Sean Feagan, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Strathmore Times
The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada (all times eastern): 7:20 p.m. B.C. is reporting 634 new cases of COVID-19, for a total of 83,107 cases since the pandemic began in the province. There have also been four new deaths, pushing the death toll from the virus to 1,380 in B.C. Four new cases have been confirmed to be variants of concern, bringing the total to 250, of which 222 are the strain first found in the U.K. and 28 are the variant first detected in South Africa. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix say this has been a week of progress, as the province gets ready to begin age-based immunizations and integrate the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine into its program. Henry and Dix say the newly approved Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be another tool in its program that will help accelerate protection of people in B.C. --- 6:15 p.m. Alberta is reporting 411 new cases of COVID-19 and two more deaths due to the virus. The province says 22 cases are of the more contagious variants. There are currently 243 people are in hospital with COVID-19, and 44 of them are in intensive care. --- 4:40 p.m. Alberta Health Minister Tyler Shandro says word of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine being approved is just more good news. Shandro's response came on the one-year anniversary of the first case of COVID-19 being identified in his province. He announced this week that all Albertans who want a vaccination will be able to do so by the end of June. Shandro said there is still no schedule or any word on how many more doses will be available from J&J but assumes it could accelerate the vaccination process. --- 4:25 p.m. Prince Edward Island is reporting one new case of COVID-19 today. Health officials say the case involves a man in his 50s who is a close contact of a previously reported infection. P.E.I. has 24 active reported cases of COVID-19. --- 3:50 p.m. Indigenous Services Canada says there were 1,300 active COVID-19 cases in First Nations communities as of Thursday and 21,836 cases since the pandemic began. There have been 245 deaths in First Nations communities. The department says more than 127,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in over 480 First Nations, Inuit and territorial communities as of Thursday. It says about 40 per cent of people in those communities have received at least one dose. --- 2:50 p.m. Saskatchewan is reporting 207 new cases of COVID-19. The province also says two more people have died from the illness. There are 138 people in hospital with the virus, and 22 of them are in intensive care. --- 1:50 p.m. Ontario's updated vaccination plan will see shots administered based on factors including age, neighbourhood, existing health conditions and inability to work from home. The province notes, however, that the plan doesn't factor in the newly approved Johnson & Johnson shot and additional doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Shots will go to seniors 75 and older starting in April with a goal of offering first shots to everyone 60 and older by the end of May. Doses will also be offered starting in April to people with specific health conditions and some caregivers, including those in congregate settings. Thirteen public health units, including Toronto, Windsor, York and Peel, will receive additional doses for hot-spot neighbourhoods between April and June. Essential workers who can't work from home will be offered doses at the end of Phase 2, while adults 59 and younger are expected to receive the shot in July, though the timeline is subject to change. --- 1:40 p.m. Manitoba is reporting 53 additional COVID-19 cases and one death. The province is also reporting one new confirmed case involving the variant first seen in South Africa. The percentage of people testing positive continues to drop, with the five-day average at three per cent. --- 1 p.m. New Brunswick is reporting four new cases of COVID-19, three of which are in the Miramichi region. Health officials say the province has 33 active reported cases and three people are in hospital with the disease, including two in intensive care. New Brunswick is announcing it will ease public health restrictions across the province as of this Sunday because COVID-19 infections are on a steady trend downward. The province's chief medical officer of health, Dr. Jennifer Russell, says the decision to shift to the lower, yellow pandemic-alert level will be revisited if there is a spike in cases over the weekend. As well, Russell is confirming that with the expected arrival of the first shipment of the two-dose Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine later this month, the province is pledging to provide one dose of COVID-19 vaccine to every New Brunswicker before the end of June. --- 12:50 p.m. A stay-at-home order will lift next week in Toronto, Peel Region and North Bay Parry Sound. The three Ontario regions were the last ones still under the order, while most of the province transitioned back to the government's colour-coded pandemic response framework last month. Toronto and Peel will go into the strictest "grey lockdown" category of the framework, as recommended by public health officials in those regions. The province says North Bay will be placed in the red zone, the second most restrictive level of pandemic measures. --- 12:45 p.m. There is one new case of COVID-19 in Newfoundland and Labrador. The figures released today bring the total number of active cases in the province to 113. Health Minister John Haggie said he was feeling optimistic and said the province is on track for a "new summer" where residents can travel around the island. The province is inviting people who are asymptomatic to seek testing to see if there are any pockets of COVID-19 still undetected in the province. --- 12:05 p.m. Pfizer has told Canada it will speed up delivery of the shipments of its COVID-19 vaccine. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says 1.5 million additional doses are coming in March. He says another one million doses will come ahead of schedule in both April and May. Trudeau says that means there will be eight million doses of the Pfzier-BioNTech vaccine in Canada by the end of this month. --- 11:55 a.m. Nunavut is reporting four new cases of COVID-19 today for a total of 17. All the new cases are in Arviat, the only community in Nunavut with active cases of COVID-19. Despite the rise in cases, chief public health officer Dr. Michael Patterson says the outbreak in Arviat is contained. Arviat has been under a strict lock down for 112 days, with all school and non-essential businesses closed and travel restricted. --- 11:45 a.m. Nunavut's health minister says the territory is on track to receive 38,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine by mid-March, enough to vaccinate 75 per cent of the eligible population. Lorne Kusugak says there will be at least one vaccination clinic in all of Nunavut's 25 communities by the end of March. Kusugak also announced a mass vaccination clinic will launch in Iqaluit on March 15. Starting March 10, residents ages 18 years and up can call Iqaluit Public health to book an appointment. --- 11:10 a.m. Quebec is reporting 798 new cases of COVID-19 today and 10 more deaths linked to the virus. Health officials say hospitalizations dropped by nine, to 617, and that 111 people were in intensive care, a drop of four. The province says it administered more than 18,000 doses of vaccine, for at total of 510,479. --- 10:40 a.m. Ontario is reporting 1,250 new cases of COVID-19 in the province. Health Minister Christine Elliott says that 337 of those new cases are in Toronto, 167 are in Peel Region, and 129 are in York Region. The province also reports a single-day high of 35,886 doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered since Thursday's update. Ontario also reports 22 more deaths linked to the virus. --- 10:35 a.m. Nova Scotia is reporting two new cases of COVID-19 today. Health officials say the new cases are in the health region that includes Halifax. They say one case involves a close contact of a previously reported infection and the other is under investigation. The province has 31 active reported cases of the disease. --- 10:20 a.m. The Manitoba government is now predicting it will be able to provide all eligible adults with a first dose of COVID-19 vaccines by the end of June. Officials say it might even be as early as mid-May, depending on the flow of supplies. The timeline has been moved up by months as more vaccines have been approved by the federal government. --- 10 a.m. Health Canada has approved the COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson and Johnson, saying it has the evidence showing the vaccine is both safe and effective against the novel coronavirus that causes the disease. It is the fourth vaccine to be approved in Canada and the first and only one Canada has purchased that requires just a single dose. Canada has pre-purchased 10 million doses, with options to buy another 28 million. --- This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 5, 2021. The Canadian Press
ROLLING HILLS ESTATES, Calif. — Tiger Woods was unconscious in a mangled SUV after he crashed the vehicle in Southern California last week, according to a court document that also revealed a nearby resident and not a sheriff’s deputy was first on the scene. The witness, who lives near the accident scene in Rolling Hills Estates just outside Los Angeles, heard the crash and walked to the SUV, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Deputy Johann Schloegl wrote in the affidavit. The man told deputies that Woods had lost consciousness and did not respond to his questions. The first deputy, Carlos Gonzalez, arrived minutes later the morning of Feb. 23 and has said Woods appeared to be in shock but was conscious and able to answer basic questions. Woods suffered severe injuries to his right leg and cuts to his face. Woods told deputies — both at the wreckage and later at the hospital — that he did not know how the crash occurred and didn’t remember driving, according to the affidavit. The document was filed Tuesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court as part of a statement of probable cause requesting that a search warrant be approved for the 2021 Genesis GV80 SUV’s data recorder, known as a black box. Schloegl requested data from Feb. 22 and Feb. 23. “I believe the data will explain how/why the collision occurred,” Schloegl wrote. Schloegl previously told USA Today that he did not seek a search warrant for Woods’ blood samples, which could be screened for drugs and alcohol. In 2017, Woods checked himself into a clinic for help dealing with prescription drug medication after a DUI charge in his home state of Florida. A judge approved the search warrant for the data recorder. Sheriff’s representatives have declined to say what they have found on it. “LASD is not releasing any further information at this time,” department spokesman Deputy Shawn Du Busky said in a statement Friday. “The traffic collision investigation is ongoing and traffic investigators continue to work to determine the cause of the collision.” Deputies did not consult with the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office regarding any search warrants in the Woods investigation, according to DA spokesman Greg Risling. Experts say police can ask prosecutors if there is enough probable cause to seek a warrant, noting that it would be typical to do so in motor vehicle cases when there aren't immediate signs of impairment but a detective believes there is reason to obtain a blood sample. Rising declined further comment when asked whether LA prosecutors generally weigh in on such cases. Woods is from the Los Angeles area and was back home to host his PGA tournament, the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club, which ended two days before the crash. He was driving an SUV loaned to him by the tournament when he struck a raised median around 7 a.m., crossed through two oncoming lanes and uprooted a tree. The crash occurred on a downhill stretch that police said is known for wrecks. Sheriff Alex Villanueva has said Woods was driving alone in good weather, there was no evidence of impairment, and the crash was “purely an accident.” However, depending on what is found on the data recorder, Woods could face a misdemeanour driving charge or a traffic citation. Dr. Andre Campbell, a trauma surgeon at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center, said it’s not unusual for patients in major vehicle crashes to lose consciousness or experience memory lapses. “A lot of times people will tell you, ‘I don’t remember what happened,’ ” he said, adding the memory loss may never return. “This is a credit to modern engineering, really, that he’s alive,” said Campbell, who is not involved in Woods’ treatment and spoke generally about trauma patients. The crash injured Woods’ right leg, requiring a lengthy surgery to stabilize shattered tibia and fibula bones. A combination of screws and pins were used for injuries in the ankle and foot. It was the 10th surgery of his career and came two months after a fifth back surgery. Through it all, Woods has never gone an entire year without playing, dating back to his first PGA Tour event as a 16-year-old in high school. Stefanie Dazio, The Associated Press
An outbreak of COVID-19 has been declared at Cathy Wever Elementary School in central Hamilton. Two new student cases of the virus were reported at the school on Thursday. Those come in the wake of two other cases reported earlier in the week — a probable staff case on March 2 and a staff case on March 1. Three student cases were also reported at Cathy Wever on Feb. 22, Feb. 19 and Feb. 17. In a March 4 letter to families, the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board said public health put the school in outbreak status “as one of these cases” meets the definition of an outbreak. A school outbreak is defined by the province “as two or more lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases ... with an epidemiological link, within a 14-day period, where at least one case could have reasonably acquired their infection in the school.” An outbreak was also declared on Thursday at St. Michael Catholic Elementary School on the Mountain. The Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board reported two confirmed student cases of the virus at the school this week — one on March 3 and one on March 1. The students were last at school on March 1 and Feb. 26, respectively. To date, there have been a total of six outbreaks at Hamilton schools since students returned to in-person learning last month. There is an ongoing outbreak at St. Eugene Catholic Elementary School in east Hamilton where there are three confirmed cases of the virus — a staff member on Feb. 23, a “third-party employee” on Feb. 22 and a student on Feb. 15. Outbreaks at St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Elementary School, A.M. Cunningham Elementary School and St. Ann Catholic Elementary School in Hamilton have been declared over. Schools in Hamilton reopened for in-person learning on Feb. 8 with enhanced health and safety measures in place after weeks of remote learning. Kate McCullough, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Hamilton Spectator