Despite concerns about several COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care homes where residents have been vaccinated, experts say vaccines have significantly reduced severe cases and deaths from the virus.
Despite concerns about several COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care homes where residents have been vaccinated, experts say vaccines have significantly reduced severe cases and deaths from the virus.
Ontario reported 3,469 more cases of COVID-19 and 22 more deaths from the illness on Tuesday, as the province announced that some pharmacies in the Greater Toronto Area would begin offering 24/7 appointments for the AstraZeneca vaccine. In a news release, the provincial government said 20 Shoppers Drug Mart locations would open round-the-clock appointments starting as early as Wednesday. Sixteen of the 20 locations are in Toronto and Peel and York Regions, according to the release. Additionally, pharmacies will now be allowed to offer walk-in vaccine appointments, the province said. Eligible adults are urged to call their local pharmacy beforehand to see if it is offering walk-in services. More than 1,400 pharmacies and some primary care providers in Ontario began offering the AstraZeneca to adults aged 40 and over this morning. WATCH | Co-chair of Ontario's science table on latest restrictions: 'It wasn't what we recommended' Meanwhile, today's case count is the fewest in the province since April 8. The new infections come as labs completed 40,596 tests for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and logged a positivity rate of 10 per cent. Another 158 people with COVID-19-related illnesses were admitted to hospital, according to the Ministry of Health, bringing the total to 2,360. Of those, 773 are being treated in intensive care, while 537 require a ventilator to breathe. All three figures are new pandemic highs for Ontario. Critical Care Services Ontario, a government agency that compiles a daily internal report for hospitals and health organizations, said that 68 additional patients were admitted to ICUs Monday alone. Public health units collectively administered 90,409 doses of vaccines Monday, a third straight day below the province's target of at least 100,000 daily. A spokesperson for the Ministry of Health, however, said that an all-day Rogers outage forced some clinics to do paper-based reporting, meaning today's total is an underestimate of how many shots were actually administered. Clinics are expected to upload revised data to Ontario's central tracking system through the day. Some 347,597 people have gotten both shots of a COVID-19 vaccine. As of last night, Ontario had used about 76 per cent of the 5,242,495 doses it has received to date. Ontario Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk said this morning that as part of the 2021 audit cycle, her office will review data the province used to develop its vaccine distribution strategy. Earlier this month, NDP Leader Andrea Horwath called on the auditor general to look into how the government built its list of 114 hot spot postal codes, and if any political considerations were introduced in the process. The Ministry of Health said previously that the decisions were based on data from Public Health Ontario. Meanwhile, today's new cases include: 1,074 in Toronto 775 in Peel Region 406 in York Region 256 in Durham Region 197 in Ottawa 130 in Halton Region 106 in Niagara Region The seven-day average of daily cases fell to 4,319. A nearly month-long period of exponential growth in the seven-day average appears to have slowed in recent days. The 22 additional deaths reported today push the official toll to 7,757. The seven-day average of daily deaths rose to 25, a new high for the third wave of the pandemic. Paid sick leave dominates question period The question of paid sick leave for workers who fall ill with COVID-19 was front and centre again during question period at the legislature, where Premier Doug Ford was conspicuously absent for a second straight day. The issue resurfaced after new COVID-19 restrictions announced by Ford last week did not include emergency sick leave despite repeated calls from the government's science table, outside public health experts and physicians for Ontario to supplement the federal program currently available. Horwath attempted to garner unanimous consent for a provincial paid sick day program, which existed in Ontario until the Ford government nixed it in 2018. Government MPPs voted down the motion. Labour Minister Monte McNaughton then went on to say he was disappointed the federal government didn't boost or improve its own paid sick leave program, the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB), in Monday's budget. McNaughton's comments echoed comments made on the budget by Finance Minister Peter Bethlenfalvy, who acknowledged that sick pay is key to curbing the pandemic but stopped short of committing any provincial help, even though paid sick leave is provincial jurisdiction. Speaking to reporters afterward, Health Minister Christine Elliott suggested the province might be rethinking that position. "It was apparent yesterday with the federal budget that they weren't making any amendments to their sick benefits program and so those gaps still remain and that is what we are going to be addressing." For his part, Ford has said the province doesn't want to duplicate the CRSB. Public health experts and labour advocates have criticized the program as needlessly complicated and financially insufficient. Inconsistent policies are 'ineffective', experts say Meanwhile, Ontario's Science Advisory Table released a document outlining what it believes should be the province's next steps, in which it reiterated the importance of paid sick leave. The document urges the province to offer an emergency benefit to workers that's immediately paid out and more money than the federal program currently provides. "Policies that harm or neglect racialized, marginalized and other vulnerable populations will not be effective against a disease that already affects these groups disproportionately," the advisory table said. "As noted in repeated studies from around the world, inconsistent policies with no clear link to scientific evidence are ineffective in fighting COVID-19." The province needs to allocate more vaccines to hotspot neighbourhoods with vulnerable populations and essential workers, the group said. It also called for the province to deem more workplaces non-essential and order their closure, as well as restrict travel between regions. The advisory table also urged the province to allow small groups of people from different households to meet outdoors if they're wearing masks and physically distancing. "Policies that discourage safe outdoor activity will not control COVID-19 and will disproportionately harm children and those who do not have access to their own greenspace, especially those living in crowded conditions," said the advisory table. People should not be gathering indoors with people from other households with the exception of safe essential workplaces, it said. That advice goes against the province's current rule that allows up to 10 people to attend wedding ceremonies, funerals and other religious gatherings indoors.
IQALUIT, Nunavut — The Nunavut RCMP has released new, but limited details into the death of a 31-year-old man who was shot by an officer in the hamlet of Clyde River last spring. Mounties said two officers responded to a domestic disturbance at the home of Abraham Natanine the night of May 5. They said the situation escalated and Natanine retrieved a weapon, but the RCMP has not released what the weapon was. Police said the interaction evolved and resulted in an officer discharging his firearm at Natanine, who was rushed to the health centre and pronounced dead. The Ottawa Police Service earlier this month issued a statement on its independent investigation into the shooting, which found the officers involved not criminally responsible for Natanine's death. The Ottawa police have a memorandum of understanding with Nunavut RCMP to investigate serious actions involving police to determine whether charges should be laid. The reports are not made public. Qajaq Robinson, a lawyer working with Natanine's family, said she found out about the investigation's conclusion through the media. She noted there was little information in the news release issued by the Ottawa Police Service about the review of Natanine's death. "This isn't serving people and it's also not serving justice," she said. "There's such a challenge in terms of getting information, that this does nothing to enhance confidence in the RCMP, in policing or in institutions of oversight." Natanine's spouse, the mother of his two children, also learned about the investigation's findings through the news. "People, victims, family, relatives, close people to those shot and killed are finding out through the news, even when they have legal counsel supporting them and known to these institutions," Robinson said. "This system is broken and it is not serving Nunavummiut." In a statement, Ottawa police Supt. Chris Renwick said the practice in death investigations is to identify a single family liaison who can pass information from investigators to family members. In Natanine's case, a liaison was established who communicated directly with the lead investigator and was told about the conclusion one day before the news release went out, Renwick said. "The Ottawa Police Service has since learned that, regrettably, not all members of the immediate family of Mr. Abraham Natanine were made aware of the conclusion and findings prior to our release issuance and related media reporting," Renwick said. Since Jan. 1, 2020, there have been six serious encounters involving police in Nunavut, including the shooting deaths of Natanine and Attachie Ashoona in the hamlet of Kinngait. Earlier this year, the Ottawa police also cleared the officer who shot and killed Ashoona as well as the officer who knocked down a Kinngait man with a truck door during an arrest. Nunavut RCMP said they won't comment further on the Natinine shooting because they anticipate there may be other reviews. In December, Nunavut's justice minister introduced a bill that would open the door for civilian oversight of RCMP in Nunavut. The bill, as it stands, still leaves the option open for police forces to conduct third-party investigations. The bill has passed second reading and is being reviewed by Nunavut's standing committee on legislation. This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 20, 2021. ___ This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship Emma Tranter, The Canadian Press
OTTAWA — Female service members and veterans came out swinging at Canada's military police on Tuesday as they related their own individual experiences after having come forward to report a sexual crime or misconduct. The women, who were testifying before a House of Commons committee, also suggested victims of such acts often end up paying the price for coming forward while perpetrators are largely let off the hook. "Most times the victims pay a greater price than the perpetrator when they come forward," said navy Lt. Heather Macdonald. "That is why most victims are reluctant to come forward. We need to fix this, we need to make this a better, safer place for females to work." The hearings at the committee on the status of women come as the federal government and Canadian Armed Forces are grappling with allegations of misconduct involving several senior officers, including chief of the defence staff Admiral Art McDonald. The specific allegations against McDonald, who temporarily stepped aside in February after the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service launched an investigation, have not been publicly disclosed. But Global News has reported that the allegation relates to sexual misconduct and relates to an incident involving Macdonald, the navy lieutenant who appeared at committee. The outlet reported she was frustrated that someone had leaked details of her case to the media without her consent and she declined to detail the allegations. CBC has reported that the alleged incident occurred during an exercise in the Far North in 2010 when the admiral was captain of HMCS Montreal. The admiral has not responded to repeated requests from The Canadian Press for comment. Macdonald did not speak about the case, nor did committee members ask her about it. She instead spoke about the challenges women in uniform face when trying to report inappropriate or criminal behaviour both at sea and in general, including the approach taken by military police investigators. "It is like you're being interrogated, and like you're a criminal," Macdonald told the committee. Air force technician Emily Tulloch related a similar experience after she came forward to report having been sexually assaulted, describing her meetings with military police as "dreadful." "During these interviews, I felt investigators were not treating me like a human being, but just another case file to them," Tulloch told the committee. "There was no empathy or humanity. ... I felt like I wasn't being heard, and that I was being treated like a criminal. And no one should be treated like a criminal when they're that vulnerable and in need of help." Military police commanders have previously spoken about the steps they have taken to better deal with sexual misconduct since retired Supreme Court justice Marie Deschamps released a scathing report on the Armed Forces' handling of such incidents in 2015. Those measures have included specialized training and even dedicated units tasked with investigating such cases. Tulloch told the committee she has "experienced a lifetime of sexual assault and misconduct" since joining the military in July 2018. "I'm here today to tell you that I was raped only one month into my basic training at (Royal Military College) Saint-Jean. I was also sexually assaulted during my training in Borden and I have been groped and kissed unwillingly at group parties and mess events. And these degrading behaviors are more common than you think," she said. Military police need to improve their training for how to conduct interviews of sexual assault victims, she told the committee. "There needs to be a specific course made to teach them that victims need understanding and empathy. And if there already is a course, then they need to tear it apart and rebuild it from the ground up." Tuesday's frank and at times raw testimony came one day after the government said it was adding $77 million in new funding and redirecting $158 million from other areas to increase victim support services and develop new prevention training. It has also said that it plans to add independent oversight to the military's handling of sexual misconduct complaints, though it has yet to provide further details. Several of those testifying underscored the importance of such external accountability, with Macdonald suggesting one option would be the creation of an independent inspector-general like what some of Canada’s allies have in place. Numerous experts and survivors have echoed that suggestion in recent months, arguing that the military has repeatedly shown its inability to bring about real change on its own. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Apr. 20, 2021. Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press
The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 7:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. There are 1,139,043 confirmed cases in Canada. _ Canada: 1,139,043 confirmed cases (87,872 active, 1,027,458 resolved, 23,713 deaths).*The total case count includes 13 confirmed cases among repatriated travellers. There were 7,276 new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 231.21 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 60,487 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 8,641. There were 46 new reported deaths Tuesday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 321 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is 46. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.12 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 62.39 per 100,000 people. There have been 30,168,562 tests completed. _ Newfoundland and Labrador: 1,048 confirmed cases (31 active, 1,011 resolved, six deaths). There were two new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 5.94 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 1.15 per 100,000 people. There have been 235,541 tests completed. _ Prince Edward Island: 174 confirmed cases (13 active, 161 resolved, zero deaths). There was one new case Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 8.14 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been nine new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is one. There have been no deaths reported over the past week. The overall death rate is zero per 100,000 people. There have been 135,297 tests completed. _ Nova Scotia: 1,831 confirmed cases (68 active, 1,696 resolved, 67 deaths). There were nine new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 6.94 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 50 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is seven. There were zero new reported deaths Tuesday. 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 0.01 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 6.84 per 100,000 people. There have been 468,265 tests completed. _ New Brunswick: 1,797 confirmed cases (140 active, 1,624 resolved, 33 deaths). There were zero new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 17.91 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 61 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is nine. There have been no deaths reported over the past week. The overall death rate is 4.22 per 100,000 people. There have been 285,774 tests completed. _ Quebec: 339,180 confirmed cases (12,363 active, 315,984 resolved, 10,833 deaths). There were 1,136 new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 144.18 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 9,708 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,387. There were 17 new reported deaths Tuesday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 77 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is 11. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.13 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 126.34 per 100,000 people. There have been 7,878,652 tests completed. _ Ontario: 424,911 confirmed cases (42,941 active, 374,213 resolved, 7,757 deaths). There were 3,469 new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 291.44 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 30,232 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 4,319. There were 22 new reported deaths Tuesday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 175 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is 25. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.17 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 52.65 per 100,000 people. There have been 13,424,896 tests completed. _ Manitoba: 36,470 confirmed cases (1,783 active, 33,727 resolved, 960 deaths). There were 211 new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 129.27 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 1,017 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 145. There was one new reported death Tuesday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of nine new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is one. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.09 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 69.6 per 100,000 people. There have been 635,043 tests completed. _ Saskatchewan: 38,651 confirmed cases (2,640 active, 35,546 resolved, 465 deaths). There were 249 new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 223.98 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 1,759 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 251. There were zero new reported deaths Tuesday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of eight new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is one. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.1 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 39.45 per 100,000 people. There have been 729,935 tests completed. _ Alberta: 173,531 confirmed cases (18,481 active, 153,002 resolved, 2,048 deaths). There were 1,345 new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 417.94 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 10,412 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,487. There were five new reported deaths Tuesday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 27 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is four. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.09 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 46.32 per 100,000 people. There have been 3,957,488 tests completed. _ British Columbia: 120,889 confirmed cases (9,377 active, 109,973 resolved, 1,539 deaths). There were 849 new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 182.16 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 7,187 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,027. There was one new reported death Tuesday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 24 new reported deaths. The seven-day rolling average of new reported deaths is three. The seven-day rolling average of the death rate is 0.07 per 100,000 people. The overall death rate is 29.9 per 100,000 people. There have been 2,381,346 tests completed. _ Yukon: 77 confirmed cases (two active, 74 resolved, one death). There were zero new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 4.76 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of two 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 8,822 tests completed. _ Northwest Territories: 43 confirmed cases (zero active, 43 resolved, zero deaths). There were zero new cases Tuesday. 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 17,005 tests completed. _ Nunavut: 428 confirmed cases (33 active, 391 resolved, four deaths). There were five new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 83.86 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 33 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is five. There have been no deaths reported over the past week. The overall death rate is 10.16 per 100,000 people. There have been 10,422 tests completed. This report was automatically generated by The Canadian Press Digital Data Desk and was first published April 20, 2021. The Canadian Press
MOSCOW — Russia insisted Tuesday that it has the right to restrict foreign naval ships' movement off Crimea, rejecting international criticism amid Western worries about a Russian troops buildup near Ukraine. Ukraine last week protested the Russian move to close broad areas of the Black Sea near Crimea to foreign navy ships and state vessels until November. The U.S. also aired its concern Monday, with State Department spokesman Ned Price saying “this represents yet another unprovoked escalation in Moscow’s ongoing campaign to undermine and destabilize Ukraine.” Price noted that the move "is particularly troubling amid credible reports of Russian troop buildup in occupied Crimea and around Ukraine’s borders." The European Union also voiced concern about the troop buildup and the navigation restrictions. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov charged that the restrictions on foreign naval ships were in line with international agreements, arguing that it’s common practice to limit areas where military drills are held. He emphasized in remarks carried by Russian news agencies that the restrictions wouldn’t interfere with commercial shipping. In a separate move, Russia on Tuesday also announced restrictions on flights near Crimea for five days starting Tuesday. The Russian military is holding massive Black Sea manoeuvrs this week, involving more than 20 warships and dozens of aircraft. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov argued that such airspace closures are common international practice. Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula in March 2014 after the country's former Russia-friendly president was driven from power by protests. Moscow then threw its weight behind separatists in eastern Ukraine, and the conflict there has killed more than 14,000 people in seven years. Tensions have risen in recent weeks with increasing violations of a cease-fire in eastern Ukraine and a massive Russian troop buildup along the Ukrainian border. Moscow has rejected Ukraine and Western concerns, arguing that it's free to deploy its forces and charging that they don't threaten anyone. But at the same time, Moscow sternly warned Ukrainian authorities against trying to use force to retake control of the rebel east, noting recent statements by Ukrainian military officers who held the door open for an offensive. The Kremlin said that Russia could be forced to intervene to protect civilians in the region. Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu on Tuesday accused Ukraine of trying to destabilize the situation in eastern Ukraine and lashed out at the U.S. and NATO for what he described as “provocative actions” in the Black Sea area. The U.S. and its NATO allies have regularly sent navy ships to the Black Sea and the U.S. flew strategic bombers over Ukraine, vexing Moscow. However, the U.S. reversed a planned deployment of two destroyers in the Black Sea earlier this month amid the heightening tensions. The Russian military has conducted a series of drills in southwestern Russia, in Crimea and other areas. On Tuesday, a pair of Tu-160 nuclear-capable strategic bombers flew over the Baltic Sea for eight hours, and the Northern Fleet conducted massive manoeuvrs in the Arctic, the Defence Ministry said. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who had previously said that Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin was refusing to take his calls, on Tuesday offered the Russian leader to meet in eastern Ukraine to defuse tensions. "Ukraine would never start a war, but would always stand until the end," he said in a video address. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba insisted Tuesday that Kyiv wasn't planning any offensive in the east. “No, Ukraine is not planning any offensive, military escalation or provocations," he said at a news conference, adding that "we are making every effort for a diplomatic and peaceful resolution of the conflict.” Kuleba charged that the Russian buildup across the border is continuing and is “expected to reach a combined force of over 120,000 troops” in about a week and urged the West to beef up sanctions against Moscow by targeting entire sectors of the Russian economy. On Monday, the EU's foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, told reporters that there are "more than 150,000 Russian troops massing on the Ukrainian borders and in Crimea,” and doubled down on the figure later before his services had to correct it in the transcript, saying the real figure was over 100,000. Recent satellite images showed hundreds of Russian military vehicles stationed at multiple bases, firing ranges and field camps along the border with Ukraine and dozens of warplanes parked at air bases in southwestern Russia and Crimea. ___ Associated Press writer Yuras Karmanau in Kyiv, Ukraine, contributed to this report. Vladimir Isachenkov, The Associated Press
A combination of missed deadlines, change orders, protests and settlements has pushed the cost of a contract to ready the Labrador-Island Link for operation beyond the half-billion-dollar mark, CBC News has learned. And documents show there is still risk associated with the contract as the Muskrat Falls project inches closer to completion. An access-to-information request by CBC News has revealed that the original contract to construct converter stations, transition compounds and a specialized computer software for the 1,100-kilometre high-voltage, direct-current transmission line from central Labrador to Newfoundland's Avalon Peninsula has grown by 30 per cent, to $519 million. It's another example of how the price tag of Muskrat Falls has grown from $7.4 billion at sanction in 2012, to just over $13 billion, and why it was labelled "misguided" by Justice Richard LeBlanc, who led a commission of inquiry into the project. This is a February 2020 photo of the synchronous condensers at the Soldiers Pond converter station, which is where electricity from Muskrat Falls is converted from DC to AC so it can be integrated into the island's power grid. The condensers are used to generate or absorb power as needed in order to maintain optimal energy flow during the conversion from DC to AC, but have been plagued by vibration problems.(Submitted by Nalcor Energy) According to a breakdown of the cost escalation provided by Nalcor Energy, the provincial energy corporation that overseas the project, a decision to make contractor GE Grid Solutions responsible for the civil work added $60 million to the contract value. Nalcor explained that it resulted in a streamlined management structure under one contract instead of two, and the additional cost was already included in the overall project budget. A decision by Nalcor to change course and allow electricity to flow early over one conductor line, which first occurred in 2018, and energize the second line later, cost more than $32 million, while Nalcor has paid out more than $17 million in settlement claims to GE. Protests against the project in October 2016 added $12 million to the cost of delivering transformers to Muskrat Falls and Cartwright, according to Nalcor. Glitchy software Nalcor inked a deal with a French company called Alstom in March 2014 at a value of just under $370 million, with a target to finish the work by the summer of 2017. The contract called for the construction of a station at Muskrat Falls to convert electricity from AC to DC, two shore-based transition compounds for the undersea cable that crosses the Strait of Belle Isle, and a second station at Soldiers Pond to convert the electricity back to AC for integration into the provincial power grid. Another critical part of the contract is the development of the computer software needed to operate the line, which has a capacity of 900 megawatts. This is a breakdown of the extra charges that has resulted in a substantial escalation in the contract to make the Labrador-Island Link transmission line ready for operation. The contract is being carried out by a company called GE Grid Solutions, and its value has grown by nearly 30 per cent.(Nalcor Energy) But like just about every other aspect of the project, the cost and schedule for the contract has been upended in a big way, beginning with Alstom's acquisition by General Electric in 2015, with subsidiary GE Grid tasked with completing the contract. For years, the computer software has been plagued by glitches, and three synchronous condensers at the Soldiers Pond continue to undergo modifications to repair vibration problems. The condensers generate or absorb power as needed to maintain optimal energy flow during the conversion from DC to AC. The latest update from Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro to the province's utility regulator earlier this month set a date of July 29 for the delivery of the final software, which is a further five-week delay from an earlier update. Further delays "remains a risk," according to Hydro, but trial operations using both power lines on the link — known as "bipole" — have been ongoing throughout the winter and spring. As for the condensers, all three are not scheduled to be fully operational until September, just two months before the entire project is scheduled to achieve full commercial operations. The Labrador-Island Link comprises roughly 3,200 steel transmission towers like the one pictured here. It crosses some 400 kilometres of terrain in Labrador, includes a 30-kilometre link beneath the Strait of Belle Isle, and another 700 kilometres in Newfoundland. Up to last fall, some $3.6 billion had been spent building the energy corridor.(Terry Roberts/CBC) The Labrador-Island Link is the energy corridor that will bring Labrador electricity to Newfoundland, and to Nova Scotia and beyond via the Maritime Link. The link comprises some 3,200 towers, 2,300 kilometres of conductor wire, and the 30-kilometre subsea cable across the Strait of Belle Isle. According to a recent quarterly report from Nalcor, some $3.6 billion has so far been spent building the Labrador-Island Link. CBC News requested an interview Monday with Nalcor CEO Stan Marshall, and is awaiting a response. Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador
As the unrelenting surge of COVID-19 patients — including a growing number from outside Ottawa — continues to push the city's intensive care units toward capacity, some health-care professionals say they're worried about how much more they can handle. When she finished her shift at The Ottawa Hospital's Civic campus on Sunday night, ICU nurse Alicia Robblee said half of the unit's 30 beds were occupied by COVID-19 patients. "We are now facing our biggest surge yet of COVID patients in the unit, and it's really scary not knowing how bad it's going to get," Robblee said. As of Monday, 56 of The Ottawa Hospital's 68 ICU beds were occupied, nearly half by COVID-19 patients. At the time, seven of those patients were from the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and four more were expected within 48 hours. At the Montfort Hospital, 12 of 17 critical care beds were occupied Monday, including three by patients from outside the region, with another two expected by Wednesday. The Queensway Carleton Hospital has 12 ICU beds, but as of Monday had 14 patients in intensive care including three from out of town. CHEO, eastern Ontario's children's hospital in Ottawa, also has 12 ICU beds, and has offered to make room for adult patients if needed. A nurse tends to a patient in the intensive care unit of The Ottawa Hospital's Civic campus during the COVID-19 pandemic.(Submitted by Alicia Robblee) Triage based on provincial needs Dr. James Downar, a palliative care doctor at the University of Ottawa and a member of the provincial bioethics table, is also an author of Ontario's triage plan, which sets out guidelines for access to critical care. Under the plan, regional hospitals can't prioritize ICU beds or ventilators for their own residents, and must instead consider the provincewide need. "We are all Ontarians contributing to the same health-care system, and we are all relying on the same pool of resources in the event of a serious crisis," said Downar. Downar said reserving ICU critical care beds for local residents would be "manifestly unfair" to Ontarians living in higher-risk areas of the province. "We see the real hot spots in certain parts of the GTA and southern Ontario, where you see high concentrations of racialized people with lower socioeconomic status and crowded communities where there is traditionally poor access to health," he said. According to The Ottawa Hospital's president and CEO Cameron Love, the situation there hasn't yet reached the point where doctors assigning critical care beds would have to decide between local residents and patients from out of town. Robblee, left, and a colleague stand beside one of the unit's few unoccupied beds.(Submitted by Alicia Robblee) Patients younger, sicker Robblee, who has worked in the ICU for the past nine years and is now training nurses diverted from other units to work in critical care, said under normal circumstances, each nurse is responsible for one patient. Robblee said her managers have told her that she could be asked to care for as many as four patients at once. Robblee said she's concerned about the way things are trending. "We are seeing patients younger and younger," she said. "When patients come to us they're coming because they need to be intubated and put on life support. They're fighting for their lives, and a lot of them don't make it."
COQUITLAM, B.C. — Homicide detectives say a 20-year-old man was shot to death Monday evening in Coquitlam, B.C. Sgt. Frank Jang of the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team says Bailey McKinney was targeted as he visited the busy Town Centre skate park at about 6:30 p.m. Investigators want to speak to the roughly 50 people who were in the park at the time of the homicide in an effort to determine what McKinney was doing there. Jang says there is no indication the homicide is linked to a fatal shooting in Vancouver on Saturday or to Metro Vancouver's ongoing gang conflict. Jang says police had previous interactions with McKinney related to drug offences, but that it's too early to tell if the killing is drug-related. No arrests have been made and Jang is urging anyone with information to share details with the homicide team. Information was still being checked, but McKinney might have had an ongoing disagreement that led to his death, Jang said. "We believe he had conflict with certain individuals and we believe that these certain individuals may be responsible for his murder," Jang said Tuesday in Coquitlam. "It leads us to believe this was targeted. It certainly wasn't random." A team of officers was canvassing the Town Centre area looking for witnesses and dash cam or surveillance video that could help identify a suspect, Jang said. This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 20, 2021. The Canadian Press
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney hopes widening the scope of COVID-19 vaccines will help stem the third wave, but experts say more action is needed or the province will end up in a health-care crisis such as Ontario’s.
Dr. Ryan Warshawski says he's a little bit addicted to watching Yukon's online vaccine tracker. It keeps a running tab on how many Yukoners have received their first and second doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. But Warshawski, president of the Yukon Medical Association, is a little concerned by what he's seen lately. "Every time I watch it, I try and see that needle go a little bit higher — and it seems like we're stalling out," he said. "And I worry now that the limitation is not lack of access to vaccines, or lack of access to vaccinators, but lack of interest in getting vaccinated." The last weekly update showed that 25,065 people, or 71 per cent of eligible adults in Yukon, had received their first shot as of Monday, while 20,326 people, or 59 per cent of those eligible, had also received their second shot. Warshawski calls that an "absolutely fantastic" achievement — but says there's still a ways to go in order to reach herd immunity in the territory. "The unfortunate problem with vaccines and with pandemics is, we really need to get as many people as we can vaccinated." Yukoners don't even need an appointment anymore to get vaccinated — clinics now accept walk-ins. Lower uptake in some regions So far, the lowest rate of vaccine uptake is in the central territory and the southeast. As of Monday, 47 per cent of eligible adults in central Yukon had received their second dose, compared to 74 per cent in western Yukon. Younger adults in Yukon have also been slower to get jabbed, according to the government's data. The rate of vaccination increases by age group, with those 70 years and older most likely to have received their shots. Yukon's COVID-19 vaccination rate by region, as of Monday.(Yukon government) Warshawski says there may be many reasons why the vaccination rate has slowed. "I think some people are just, you know, a little bit blasé about it. They sort of say, 'well, if I get COVID, I'm young, I'll probably be fine. I don't really feel the need to get vaccinated,'" Warshawski said. He also says some people just don't trust institutions, or don't like feeling as though they're being told what to do. "Listen, I live in the Yukon, too. I get it. You know, I don't always like being told something by an authority figure," he said. "So I would encourage anyone who has questions, who isn't sure, who's really just feeling like this is just being pushed upon them — please just talk to us. You know, call your doctor, call your community health nurse." He also recognizes that some people just won't be persuaded, no matter what. He points to misinformation that circulates online, and how some people can become deeply immersed in it. "The challenge is, is that it is virtually impossible to have a real conversation with these individuals," he said. "I don't think there's a lot of hope of me reaching some people." The Whitehorse COVID-19 vaccine clinic opened to all adults over the age of 18 last month, becoming the first capital city in Canada to do so. It's now open for walk-ins.(Steve Silva/CBC) Still, he encourages others to do what they can to battle misinformation by asking questions of their health providers, and sometimes, by pushing back on social media. "It would be wonderful if, you know, people were chiming in and we were creating sort of an online movement that was sort of evidence-based." Vaccinations, he says, still offer the best chance to move beyond the pandemic — and Yukon health officials are trying to figure out how to keep people from feeling blasé about the shot. "The reality is, I don't want to be up at three in the morning looking after COVID patients — I would rather be sleeping. You know, I would rather be taking my kids to the pool that no longer has any restrictions on it," he said. He also has a message for those who've been vaccinated already. "Take a moment, pat yourself on the back. You know, you've done the single greatest thing you can to help end this pandemic."
MOSCOW (Reuters) -President Vladimir Putin warned the West on Wednesday not to cross Russia's "red lines", saying Moscow would respond swiftly and harshly to any provocations and those responsible would regret it. At a time of acute crisis in ties with the United States and Europe, with Russian troops massed near Ukraine and opposition leader Alexei Navalny on hunger strike in jail, the Kremlin leader used his state of the nation speech to project a message of Russian strength and defiance in the face of outside threats. "We want good relations...and really don't want to burn bridges," Putin told both houses of parliament.
Thousands more Albertans are rushing to roll up their sleeves to get vaccinated against COVID-19 as the province lowers the age of eligibility for the AstraZeneca-Oxford shot. More appointments were made for AstraZeneca in the span of two and half hours on Tuesday than during all of last week, Alberta Health Services said in a statement. People born in 1981 or earlier became eligible to make appointments at 8 a.m. More than 9,000 people were already in the queue when the online booking site went live, AHS said. By 10:30 a.m., more than 27,000 people had booked appointments. "Uptake for the AstraZeneca vaccine has been significantly higher this morning," AHS spokesperson Kerry Williamson in an email. Eligible Albertans can book through the online site, or by calling 811. The shots are also being offered at select pharmacies and large vaccinations centres established by Alberta Health. During the first hours of booking Tuesday, about 6,500 appointments were made in the Edmonton health zone and another 15,000 were booked in the Calgary zone. "This is a higher uptake in one morning than over the entirety of last week," Williamson wrote. "For context, 4,525 people received the AstraZeneca vaccine in Edmonton, and 5,559 people received AstraZeneca in Calgary between April 12 and April 18." AstraZeneca is the only vaccine Alberta is making available to people as young as 40. The province lowered the eligibility age from 55 on Sunday based on new Health Canada rules. Lowering the age made 575,000 more Albertans eligible for the shots. As of Sunday, Alberta had about 170,000 doses of AstraZeneca available. Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta's chief medical officer of health, was among those to get the shot . She shared a photograph of herself on Twitter. "I am proud today to be among the Albertans now eligible to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine," Hinshaw wrote. "I am protecting myself, my family & my community." The vaccine is being offered at more than 70 pharmacies and AHS vaccination sites across the province, including two walk-in clinics. There were long lines outside the Edmonton Expo Centre and Telus Convention Centre sites in Edmonton and Calgary. Due to high demand, hundreds of additional slots were opened up, hours after the clinics opened. Appointments at both sites are fully booked for Tuesday. There are some walk-in spots available but AHS said it would honour those who are already waiting in line. About 3,000 Albertans booked at the Telus site and about 590 people are booked to get the jab at Expo. Appointments will be booked for as long as vaccine supplies last. No additional AstraZeneca shipments are currently scheduled to arrive in Canada, Alberta Health, said in a statement Tuesday. 'Very busy' Kamran Maqbool, the owner of Grandview Pharmacy in Edmonton said his phone had been ringing off the hook. Less than an hour after opening his doors, more than 30 appointments had been made and a long queue of hopeful walk-ins had formed outside, Maqbool said. He said it's the biggest rush for appointments he's seen. "It's very busy and the response is very positive. Canadians are very well educated on the vaccine," he said. Maqbool said the constantly shifting guidelines around AstraZenca had created some confusion during the initial rollout and limited supply remains a concern. He said the pharmacy has about 200 more doses of the shot remaining and has no idea when the next batch will arrive. He's urging Albertans to remain patient. "We want to try our best to get it out to the community. "Hope for the best that you can get it soon." As of Sunday, 1,165,223 doses of COVID vaccine had been administered across the province, with 233,340 Albertans fully immunized.
A Cree two-spirited college student from Mistissini, Que., says she looks forward to being a voice of acceptance for LGBTQ2S people in Cree communities after becoming the Quebec Cree Nation princess. Geraldine Trapper won the third Miss Eeyou Eenou Iskwaau pageant, which was held in-person and online on Saturday in Waswanipi, located about 700 kilometres north of Montreal. "I am a part of the LGBTQ2S community, I am a 2-spirited woman. I am hoping to plant some seeds and make a difference for the next generation … You go through a lot of hardships just for being who you are," said Trapper. Miss Eeyou Eenou Iskwaau is organized by the Cree Women of Eeyou Istchee Association and has been held every two years since 2017. "It's important that I love … and accept myself as a person." - Geraldine Trapper, Miss Eeyou Eenou Iskwaau 2021 Trapper joined the event via video chat from Gatineau, where she is currently a student at Algonquin College. She is studying General Arts and Sciences, with an interest in Indigenous and justice studies. Finding her voice As a survivor of childhood sexual and physical abuse, she said she is particularly proud of herself for finding her voice and strength. "Overcoming all these hardships and challenges in my life and to be able to come to where I am today — and to who I am now as a person that has worked through her traumas, that has healed from her hurt," said Trapper, who also spent time dealing with homelessness as a younger person. "It's important that I love myself and accept myself as a person." Mistissini's Geraldine Trapper was crowned Miss Eeyou Eenou Iskwaau this past weekend. The event was held in-person in Waswanipi, Que., and online.(Catherine Quinn/CWEIA ) Trapper said with the pressures from school and life, she considered dropping out of the pageant, but the other contestants convinced her to see it through until the end. "If it wasn't for them … I wouldn't [be] where I am today," said Trapper. "They're all such amazing people." There were six other contestants vying for the moose-hide, caribou-tufted and beaded crown: Robin Matthew (Chisasibi); Jessika Danyluk (Wemindji); Nikita Mayappo (Eastmain); Laura Ottereyes (Waswanipi); Josee Bernier (Oujé-Bougoumou); and Angel Jolly (Nemaska), who won the runner-up crown. 'Decolonizing each other' "Seeing them bond and create friendships and a kinship warms my soul," Cree Women of Eeyou Istchee Association President Stella Masty Bearskin wrote on Facebook. "They didn't see each other as a threat or an enemy, there was no animosity …They are already decolonizing each other, by empowering, uplifting and supporting each other," she said. From left to right: Josee Bernier (Oujé-Bougoumou); Jessika Danyluk (Wemindji); Angel Jolly (Nemaska); Laura Ottereyes (Waswanipi); Nikita Mayappo (Eastmain); Robin Matthew (Chisasibi).(CWIEA/Jacques Larouche) Trapper said she felt the judges were impressed by her connection to her Cree culture, which she said is very important for her. She also has a deep respect for traditional medicines. "I feel very connected to the land and to my culture and to my ancestors when I work with traditional medicine," said Trapper, adding that she is looking forward to visiting the Cree communities and learning from local traditional healers.
OTTAWA — Canada is extending the use of quarantine hotels for international air travellers another month, and considering whether it needs to do more to stop COVID-19 cases from getting into the country from abroad. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that could include barring incoming flights from specific countries, such as India, even as he defended his government's actions on the border as effective Tuesday. "We are continuing to look at more and I have asked our officials to look carefully at, for example, what the U.K. has done very recently on suspending flights from India," he said. The U.K. is adding India to its "red list" of countries from which it bars incoming flights. Only British citizens arriving from one of the 40 countries on the list are permitted entry, and they must go to quarantine hotels for 10 days. India has reported more than 250,000 new cases of COVID-19 daily this week. Its hospitals are full and the death toll is piling up. Doctors are investigating whether another new variant, known as B.1.617, may be part of the reason. Last December, Canada suspended flights from the U.K. for just over two weeks due to concerns about the COVID-19 variant that first emerged there. Data on flights with positive cases shows in the last two weeks shows 117 flights arrived where at least one passenger tested positive, and 29 of them originated in Delhi. Another 20 arrived from U.S. cities, and 24 from Europe. Canada currently requires all air passengers arriving from outside the country to spend up to three days in an approved quarantine hotel pending a COVID-19 test result. Those rules, which also require COVID-19 tests before boarding an international flight to Canada, and for people arriving at land borders, were extended another month to May 21, Trudeau said. Health Canada says about one per cent of air travellers are testing positive while in a quarantine hotel. All travellers are supposed to quarantine for 14 days regardless of their test result. They are to test again at 10 days, but Health Canada says it does not currently know how many are testing positive at that point. While Canada looks at potentially expanding international travel restrictions, provincial governments are moving to curb domestic travel as well. Ontario put up checkpoints at borders with Manitoba and Quebec this week, seeking to turn away non-essential travellers who don't live in the province. Nova Scotia Premier Iain Rankin said Tuesday he wants everybody to stay out of his province unless they live there, invoking a ban on incoming travellers who aren't Nova Scotia residents or essential workers. British Columbia is looking at roadblocks at ferry terminals or highways in and out of Vancouver to discourage recreational travel within the province. Trudeau also said Tuesday he will get the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine at an Ontario pharmacy as soon as an appointment is available. Trudeau and Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland became suddenly eligible when Ontario lowered the age to get an Oxford-AstraZeneca shot at a pharmacy to people 40 years old and up. Alberta, British Columbia and Manitoba have also dropped the age eligibility to 40. Quebec announced Tuesday it will start offering the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to those 45 and over starting Wednesday. All provinces had previously been limiting the vaccine to those over 55, while health experts looked into the risk the vaccine posed for blood clots. Health Canada said last week it is investigating evidence of a possible link between the vaccine and an exceedingly rare blood clot disorder. The regulator said that the risk is extremely low. It also said the vaccine is very effective and still safe for all adults. On Tuesday, New Brunswick confirmed its first case of a patient experiencing blood clots after receiving the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. The person in their 30s received the vaccine in mid-March, was treated and has recovered. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization was to have a briefing Tuesday to update its advice on how the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine should be used, but suddenly cancelled it minutes before it was to begin, with no explanation. Several provinces didn't wait for NACI to adjust its advice, and lowered the age limit as hundreds, if not thousands, of doses moved toward their expiration date and not enough people over the age of 55 were booking appointments. Trudeau told pharmacists during a virtual meeting Tuesday morning that his office is still working out the details, "but I look forward to having a pharmacist give me my vaccine as soon as we can secure an appointment in the proper processes." "We'll keep you posted on it," he told them. Freeland, at the same meeting, said she dispatched her children to use their technology skills online to find her an appointment. "My daughter said we're on a waitlist so I have to check on that after this," she said. "But as soon as I can I'll get mine too and I hope at a local pharmacy." This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 20, 2021. Mia Rabson, The Canadian Press
VANCOUVER — A judge is scheduled to release her decision today on a request to delay the final leg of hearings in Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou's extradition case. The hearings were set to begin next week but lawyers for Meng say they need more time to review documents related to the case obtained through a Hong Kong court. They asked Associate Chief Justice Heather Holmes on Monday to adjourn proceedings until Aug. 3, which they argued would also allow time for the third wave of COVID-19 to subside. But lawyers for Canada's attorney general said there's no justification to delay proceedings in the high-profile case, especially given the public interest. They say Meng's legal team hasn't provided any evidence that the documents will contain relevant material and they accused her lawyers of trying to build arguments more appropriate for her criminal trial in the United States. Meng was arrested at Vancouver's airport in 2018 at the request of the United States to face fraud charges related to America's sanctions against Iran, which both she and Huawei deny. This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 21, 2021. The Canadian Press
Ontario Premier Doug Ford is isolating in Toronto after he was in close contact with a staff member who has since tested positive for COVID-19, his office said late Tuesday night. The staff member was in contact with Ford on Monday, and was tested on Tuesday after learning they had been at risk of exposure, according to Ivana Yelich, spokesperson for the premier. That staff member received a positive test result on Tuesday evening. Ford left the Ontario legislature to be tested as soon as he learned the staffer was at risk of exposure, Yelich said in a statement. The premier has received a negative test result. "While his test results have returned negative, the premier will follow all public health advice for close contacts of positive cases, including isolating," she said. Members of Ford's office staff, who were close contacts of the staff member who tested positive, will also go into isolation. "We are seeking additional guidance from Toronto Public Health on all precautions that the premier and isolating staff must follow," Yelich added. "The premier will continue leading this government's response to the COVID-19 pandemic while in isolation, including briefings with officials and communicating with the public." On April 9, Ford received the AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID-19 vaccine at a Toronto drug store. Ontario Premier Doug Ford receives the AstraZeneca vaccine against COVID-19 from pharmacist Anmol Soor at a Toronto drug store on Friday, April 9.(Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press) Ontario reported 3,469 more cases of COVID-19 and 22 more deaths from the illness on Tuesday. The case count was the lowest in the province since April 8. Another 158 people with COVID-19-related illnesses were admitted to hospital, according to the provincial health ministry, bringing the total to 2,360. Of those, 773 are being treated in intensive care, while 537 require ventilators to breathe. All three figures are new pandemic highs for Ontario. The new infections come as labs completed 40,596 tests for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and logged a positivity rate of 10 per cent.
Developers looking to build along the Grand River need to go through the Haudenosaunee first. That was the message delivered outside the Onondaga longhouse on Six Nations Tuesday morning by Deyohowe:to, a Cayuga hereditary chief from the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Chiefs Council. The Confederacy announced a moratorium on all development within the Haldimand Tract, an area of more than 950,000 acres that runs 10 kilometres along both sides of the Grand from its source north of Fergus to Lake Erie. “No development can proceed along the Haldimand Tract without the consent of the Haudenosaunee,” Deyohowe:to said. “So anybody developing or in the process of it, you need to stop what you’re doing.” The tract includes more than three dozen municipalities, among them Brantford, Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge. The Grand flows through Haldimand County, where for over nine months Six Nations land defenders have occupied the site of a planned subdivision in Caledonia, claiming the land — which they call 1492 Land Back Lane — as unceded Haudenosaunee territory. Deyohowe:to said prospective developers need to enter into talks with the Confederacy through its development arm, the Haudenosaunee Development Institute. But he did not offer many details about how those negotiations would ideally proceed, or how the moratorium would or could be enforced. “We have a body that’s going to be looking after that,” the chief said. The Confederacy did not shut the door on future development, but made it clear a change in approach is needed. “We are not interested in selling land. There’s portions of land that we have leased out that can still be negotiated,” Deyohowe:to said. “The developers need to stop digging in our lands and to come forward now and do the process.” Skyler Williams, spokesperson for 1492 Land Back Lane, suggested land defenders are prepared to occupy other sites should development proceed without consultation. “There’s 27,000 people at Six Nations, and there’s many more that are anxious and willing to do whatever it takes to make sure that our land rights are upheld,” he said. “I think what we’ve shown is how committed we are as a people to take every action necessary to protect our lands and waters.” The moratorium comes 15 years to the day after land defenders repelled a large-scale police effort to evict them from the former Douglas Creek Estates subdivision in Caledonia. The province eventually bought that land from the developers, and it remains under Six Nations control. The Confederacy is the traditional leadership on Six Nations, guided by hereditary chiefs and clan mothers. Historically, the Confederacy has been at odds with the elected band council, which was created by the federal government in 1924 to supplant the Confederacy as the reserve’s governing body. Deyohowe:to said the elected council was aware of Tuesday’s announcement, but its members are “limited” in their authority to assert land sovereignty. “To me, it’s more on the federal government to step up and take charge,” he said. Hamilton Centre NDP MP Matthew Green, a vocal supporter of Indigenous land rights and financial backer of the 1492 Land Back Lane legal fund, highlighted what he considers Ottawa’s “complete and abject failure” to establish a nation-to-nation relationship with the Haudenosaunee. “There has not been free, prior and informed consent” for development from the Haudenosaunee, Green said, adding that building along the Haldimand Tract is “inappropriate” while land claims remain unresolved. A spokesperson for federal Crown-Indigenous Relations minister Carolyn Bennett previously told The Spectator the government is ready to negotiate but is waiting for the Confederacy and the elected council to work through their political differences. The British granted the Haldimand Tract to the Haudenosaunee in 1784 in gratitude for their allyship during the American Revolutionary War. Over the centuries, the territory was whittled down until only the Six Nations reserve — less than five per cent of the original land grant — remains under Haudenosaunee control. Federal and provincial governments say Six Nations chiefs legally sold or surrendered the Tract lands, but the Confederacy rejects that notion, saying much of the land was taken fraudulently by colonial authorities. “We never agreed to any of these land deeds that they’re passing around,” Deyohowe:to said, adding that the Confederacy does not have faith in the Canadian court system to address land claims. “The courts are set up to take our land — to steal our land. That’s where the big problem lies.” J.P. Antonacci, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Hamilton Spectator
When Delio Delgado turns 51 on Wednesday, he'll be inside a Hamilton hospital battling COVID-19. "I was hoping that tomorrow would be a happier day," he said. But his birthday almost didn't come. Since mid-March, he's been fighting a virus that nearly killed him. And while he's on a long road to recovery now, when Delgado leaves the hospital, he'll have another uphill battle — the Dominican-born Hamiltonian is months behind on rent and car payments. "I'm not doing very well," Delgado said about his finances from his hospital bed during an interview on Tuesday morning. "I had to stop the lease of the car, I had to stop insuring the car ... I'm an industrial and residential painter ... my car gets me my income." Delio Delgado lives in a hotspot in Hamilton and wishes vaccines could have come sooner. Now, he's in the hospital with COVID-19 and will return home in debt.(Submitted by Delio Delgado ) And Delgado said his driver's license was suspended because he was unable to do a required physical exam, which he worries will jack up his insurance when he's ready to drive. But Delgado said he is thankful to be breathing, even if it doesn't come easy. From home to induced coma in a matter of days Delgado said he worked at Hamilton General Hospital as a painter during most of the pandemic, which allowed him to learn a lot about the virus and staying safe. He eventually stopped working there and was on unemployment insurance before his life changed in March. Delgado isn't sure how he got the virus, but he lives in one of Hamilton's hot spot neighbourhoods. His area, with the L8N postal code, was recently given vaccine priority. WATCH: Hamilton man describes emotional moments in ICU with COVID On March 13, after feeling a few symptoms he thought could be COVID-19, Delgado said he had uncontrollable diarrhea. That's when he said he decided to go to the emergency room at St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton. Delgado said he was immediately given oxygen and put into the intensive care unit (ICU). "I got into ICU and it was like a hurricane, I got like four or five nurses around me and everyone is doing a different task, and I remember, 'What is his oxygen level? What is his oxygen level? He's not doing very well,' that's what I'm hearing," Delgado recalls. "I spent three or four days like that." Staff at Hamilton Health Sciences don personal protective equipment during the COVID-19 pandemic.(Hamilton Health Sciences) While he was in the ICU, Delgado said he had a quiet moment with his doctor. "My doctor at the time, she stopped at the door of the ICU, it was all glass, she can see through ... I was just passing out almost and I put my hand on my heart and I tapped it like ... 'I appreciate what you're doing, saving my life,'" Delgado said, tearing up. "The beautiful thing, that gave me a smile on my heart, was she [pulled down] her mask and gave me a smile and she also tapped her heart back." Shortly after, Delgado entered an induced coma. He's unsure when he woke up, but Degaldo said he was on a ventilator and a liquid diet. Then he said doctors told him he'd be leaving the ICU and beginning his road to recovery. Delgado said his cousin came to visit him that day and said they heard on March 27 he only had half an hour to live. "Miraculously, I got out of the dark days," he said. Province should've rolled out vaccines sooner, Delgado says Now he's thinking about leaving the hospital — but he'll have to deal with those missed payments, which he said are roughly $1,250 a month. In Delgado's case, a group of friends and local artists started a fundraiser to help him avoid being overwhelmed with debt when he leaves. Ingrid Mayrhofer, one of his friends who started the GoFundMe page, said it's been four days and they've raised nearly $4,000 of their $5,000 goal. "He's the first person I actually know who was infected ... it's definitely hit home," she said. "I'm really grateful for how the arts community has come together in support of Delio." WATCH: Ford blames lack of vaccines for COVID-19 crisis, should he? Delgado said the Ford government needs to do more to help COVID-19 survivors avoid financial hardship. "I don't know what the measures could've been because everybody's situation is different ... I don't think they're doing the best job with this pandemic either," he said. One thing he wishes happened sooner was lowering the age limits for people to get doses of vaccines like AstraZeneca and reaching hot spot communities sooner. "We know this pandemic is affecting more marginalized and people of colour than any other demographic," he said Tuesday. "Everything should've happened sooner." Family, painting and religion fuel for recovery Delgado said he became religious because of his time in the ICU. After he's back home, Delgado said he wants to spend time with his mother, who plans on coming from the Dominican Republic. He also said he's excited to see his American bulldog, Useey, his 10-year-old son, Samuel, and start painting again. "That's my fuel," Delgado said.
VICTORIA — The British Columbia government is looking at using periodic roadblocks to limit travel in a bid to slow the spread of COVID-19. Mike Farnworth, minister of public safety and the solicitor general, says the checks would be set up at locations like ferry terminals or along major highways leading out of Metro Vancouver. In a statement today, Farnworth says the goal is to discourage recreational travel but there will be no random, individual stops. On Monday, Premier John Horgan said unenforceable restrictions would not be considered. Farnworth says his ministry is also working to ensure the new rules don't unfairly impact racialized communities. The statement says more information is expected later in the week. "Most British Columbians know they have a part to play in helping to curb the spread of COVID-19 and I am sure they will adhere to the new rules and stay in their region," Farnworth says. “Our intention is to discourage recreational and leisure travel, not punish people, and we are not interested in disrupting commuters and people going about their lives." Police will wait for an order under the Emergency Program Act and any associated guidelines before proceeding, says the ministry. The government has been working with the tourism industry and BC Ferries to cancel bookings that have been made and to not accept new ones from people living outside their intended destination, Horgan said Monday. Measures that ban indoor dining and adult activities at gyms have also been extended for another five weeks, matching the length of the travel restrictions, which will continue until at least May 24. On Monday, the B.C. government said the province had 2,960 new cases of COVID-19 since Friday. This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 20, 2021. The Canadian Press
The latest numbers on COVID-19 vaccinations in Canada as of 10:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, April 20, 2021. In Canada, the provinces are reporting 240,000 new vaccinations administered for a total of 10,483,418 doses given. Nationwide, 944,342 people or 2.5 per cent of the population has been fully vaccinated. The provinces have administered doses at a rate of 27,661.261 per 100,000. There were 1,198 new vaccines delivered to the provinces and territories for a total of 13,304,460 doses delivered so far. The provinces and territories have used 78.8 per cent of their available vaccine supply. Please note that Newfoundland and Labrador, P.E.I., Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and the territories typically do not report on a daily basis. Newfoundland and Labrador is reporting 26,085 new vaccinations administered over the past seven days for a total of 138,422 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 264.35 per 1,000. In the province, 1.85 per cent (9,674) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Newfoundland and Labrador for a total of 173,840 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 33 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 79.63 per cent of its available vaccine supply. P.E.I. is reporting 7,925 new vaccinations administered over the past seven days for a total of 43,018 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 271.186 per 1,000. In the province, 6.04 per cent (9,579) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to P.E.I. for a total of 53,545 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 34 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 80.34 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Nova Scotia is reporting 60,428 new vaccinations administered over the past seven days for a total of 218,018 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 223.402 per 1,000. In the province, 3.31 per cent (32,255) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Nova Scotia for a total of 320,200 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 33 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 68.09 per cent of its available vaccine supply. New Brunswick is reporting 42,913 new vaccinations administered over the past seven days for a total of 204,576 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 262.263 per 1,000. In the province, 2.44 per cent (19,028) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to New Brunswick for a total of 255,205 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 33 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 80.16 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Quebec is reporting 48,475 new vaccinations administered for a total of 2,448,409 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 286.141 per 1,000. There were 1,198 new vaccines delivered to Quebec for a total of 3,042,405 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 36 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 80.48 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Ontario is reporting 90,409 new vaccinations administered for a total of 3,995,187 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 271.984 per 1,000. In the province, 2.37 per cent (347,597) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Ontario for a total of 5,242,495 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 36 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 76.21 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Manitoba is reporting 9,051 new vaccinations administered for a total of 350,977 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 254.885 per 1,000. In the province, 5.08 per cent (69,997) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Manitoba for a total of 479,010 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 35 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 73.27 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Saskatchewan is reporting 5,278 new vaccinations administered for a total of 357,447 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 303.139 per 1,000. In the province, 3.64 per cent (42,950) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Saskatchewan for a total of 397,575 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 34 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 89.91 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Alberta is reporting 31,205 new vaccinations administered for a total of 1,196,428 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 271.789 per 1,000. In the province, 5.44 per cent (239,277) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Alberta for a total of 1,456,295 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 33 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 82.16 per cent of its available vaccine supply. British Columbia is reporting 34,484 new vaccinations administered for a total of 1,414,644 doses given. The province has administered doses at a rate of 275.674 per 1,000. In the province, 1.72 per cent (88,263) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to British Columbia for a total of 1,731,470 doses delivered so far. The province has received enough of the vaccine to give 34 per cent of its population a single dose. The province has used 81.7 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Yukon is reporting 580 new vaccinations administered for a total of 45,971 doses given. The territory has administered doses at a rate of 1,101.603 per 1,000. In the territory, 49.74 per cent (20,755) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Yukon for a total of 54,320 doses delivered so far. The territory has received enough of the vaccine to give 130 per cent of its population a single dose. The territory has used 84.63 per cent of its available vaccine supply. The Northwest Territories are reporting zero new vaccinations administered for a total of 44,646 doses given. The territory has administered doses at a rate of 989.517 per 1,000. In the territory, 42.71 per cent (19,271) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to the Northwest Territories for a total of 56,300 doses delivered so far. The territory has received enough of the vaccine to give 120 per cent of its population a single dose. The territory has used 79.3 per cent of its available vaccine supply. Nunavut is reporting 487 new vaccinations administered for a total of 25,675 doses given. The territory has administered doses at a rate of 662.991 per 1,000. In the territory, 29.13 per cent (11,282) of the population has been fully vaccinated. There were zero new vaccines delivered to Nunavut for a total of 41,800 doses delivered so far. The territory has received enough of the vaccine to give 110 per cent of its population a single dose. The territory has used 61.42 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 April 20, 2021. The Canadian Press