"Given the widespread technological means available, in the form of high-quality printers and different software, fraudsters are able to produce high-quality counterfeit, forged or fake documents," Europol warned.
"Given the widespread technological means available, in the form of high-quality printers and different software, fraudsters are able to produce high-quality counterfeit, forged or fake documents," Europol warned.
(NASA/JPL-Caltech - image credit) When the Perseverance rover successfully landed on Mars last month, it arrived with a B.C.-made tool in its figurative tool belt. The six-wheeled, plutonium-powered U.S. rover landed on the red planet on Feb. 18, with a mandate to drill down and collect tiny geological specimens that will be returned to NASA in about 2031. That drilling will be done using a drill bit tip designed and manufactured by a company based in Langford, B.C. "It has great wear and fraction resistance so it is perfect for a Mars application," said Ron Sivorat, business director for Kennametal Inc., during an interview on CBC's All Points West. The drill bit tip is made from K92-grade tungsten carbide blanks, which Sivorat said are one of the toughest grades used for drilling here on earth and he is confident it will be good enough for Mars. According to Sivorat, the company has had a relationship with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory since 2014, when the space agency first began ordering and testing Kennametal Inc. drill bit tips. In 2018, the company learned NASA wanted to work with it to build a bit for Perseverance. Sivorat said staff built the drill bit to NASA's specifications and then sent it to the agency who finessed it somewhat for its Mars mission. When Perseverance landed safely on the fourth planet from the sun, it was an exciting moment for Kennametal Inc. employees, many of whom watched the landing online and are continuing to check on Perservance's daily progress updates. "We know that we are going to be part of, in one way or another, an historical event that will be remembered for many years to come," said Sivorat. Sivorat said he expects the drill bit built in B.C. to start penetrating the surface of Mars in the next couple of weeks. And B.C. is not the only Canadian province with a connection to Perseverance. Canadian Photonic Labs, based in Minnedosa, Man., manufactured a high-speed and highly-durable camera that played an instrumental role in landing the rover. The Manitoba company's relationship with NASA dates back roughly 15 years, he said — but much of the work that's happened in that time has been cloaked in secrecy.
As COVID-19 vaccine supplies ramp up across the country, most provinces and territories have released details of who can expect to receive a shot in the coming weeks. Here's a list of their plans to date: Newfoundland and Labrador The province says it is in Phase 1 of its vaccine rollout. Health-care workers on the front lines of the pandemic, staff at long-term care homes, people of "advanced age" and adults in remote or isolated Indigenous communities have priority. Chief medical health officer Dr. Janice Fitzgerald has said Phase 2 will begin in April if vaccine supply remains steady. The second phase prioritizes adults over 60 years old, beginning with those over 80, as well as Indigenous adults, first responders, rotational workers and adults in marginalized populations, such as those experiencing homelessness. Adults between 16 and 59 years old will be vaccinated in the third phase of the rollout, and Fitzgerald has said she expects that to begin this summer. --- Nova Scotia Health officials began expanding access to COVID-19 vaccines on Feb. 22, opening community clinics for people aged 80 years and older. Dr. Robert Strang, chief medical officer of health, has said the province's plan is to open another 10 clinics in March for 48,000 people who will be mailed a letter informing them how to book an appointment. Strang said the vaccination program will then expand to the next age group in descending order until everyone in the province is offered the chance to be immunized. The age groups will proceed in five-year blocks. Future community clinics are to be held March 8 in Halifax, New Minas, Sydney and Truro; March 15 in Antigonish, Halifax and Yarmouth; and March 22 in Amherst, Bridgewater and Dartmouth. The province began its vaccination campaign with residents of long-term care homes, those who work directly with patients, those who are 80 and older, and those who are at risk for other reasons including First Nations and African Nova Scotian communities. Nova Scotia plans to have vaccine available to at least 75 per cent of the population by the end of September 2021. --- Prince Edward Island The province says the first phase of its vaccination drive, currently slated to last until the end of March, targets residents and staff of long-term and community care, as well as health-care workers with direct patient contact at higher risk of COVID-19 exposure. Those 80 and older, adults in Indigenous communities, and truck drivers and other rotational workers are also included. The next phase, which is scheduled to begin in April, will target those above 70 and essential workers. The province intends to make the vaccine available to everyone in late summer and fall. --- New Brunswick The province is also focusing on vaccinating those living in long-term care homes, health-care workers with direct patient contact, adults in First Nations communities and older New Brunswickers in the first phase, which lasts until at least March. The next phase is scheduled to begin in the spring and includes residents and staff of communal settings, other health-care workers including pharmacists, first responders and critical infrastructure employees. The government website says once the vaccine supply is continuous and in large enough quantities, the entire population will be offered the shots. --- Quebec Quebec started vaccinating older seniors on Monday, after a first phase that focused largely on health-care workers, remote communities and long-term care. In Montreal, mass vaccine sites including the Olympic Stadium opened their doors to the public as the province began inoculating seniors who live in the hard-hit city. The government announced last week it would begin booking appointments for those aged 85 and up across the province, but that age limit has since dropped to 70 in some regions, including Montreal. The province says the vaccination of children and pregnant women will be determined based on future studies of vaccine safety and efficacy in those populations. --- Ontario The province began vaccinating people with the highest priority, including those in long-term care, high-risk retirement home residents, certain classes of health-care workers and people who live in congregate care settings. Several regions in Ontario moved ahead Monday with their plans to vaccinate the general public, while others used their own systems to allow residents aged 80 and older to schedule appointments. Toronto also began vaccinating members of its police force Monday after the province identified front-line officers as a priority group. Constables and sergeants who respond to emergency calls where medical assistance may be required are now included in the ongoing first phase of Ontario's vaccine rollout, a spokeswoman for the force said. A day earlier, Toronto said the province expanded the first phase of its vaccination drive to include residents experiencing homelessness. The provincial government has said it aims to begin vaccinating Ontarians aged 80 and older starting the week of March 15, the same day it plans to launch its vaccine booking system, which will offer a service desk and online portal. It has said the vaccine rollout will look different in each of its 34 public health units. When asked about the lack of provincewide cohesion, Health Minister Christine Elliott said that public health units know their regions best and that's why they have been given responsibility to set the pace locally. --- Manitoba Manitoba is starting to vaccinate people in the general population. Appointments are now available for most people aged 94 and up, or 74 and up for First Nations people. Until now, vaccines have been directed to certain groups such as health-care workers and people in personal care homes. Health officials plan to reduce the age minimum, bit by bit, over the coming months. Dr. Joss Reimer, medical lead of the province's vaccine task force, has said inoculations could be open to all adults in the province by August if supplies are steady. --- Saskatchewan The province is still in the first phase of its vaccination rollout, which reserves doses for long-term care residents and staff, health-care workers at elevated risk of COVID-19 exposure, seniors over the age of 70 and anyone 50 or older living in a remote area. In all, nearly 400,000 doses are required to finish this stage. The next phase will be focused on vaccinating the general population by age. It hopes to begin its mass vaccination campaign by April, but there if there isn’t enough supply that could be pushed back to June. Saskatchewan will begin immunizing the general population in 10-year increments, starting with those 60 to 69. Also included in this age group will be people living in emergency shelters, individuals with intellectual disabilities in care homes and people who are medically vulnerable. Police, corrections staff and teachers are among the front-line workers not prioritized for early access to shots. The government says supply is scarce. --- Alberta Alberta is now offering vaccines to anyone born in 1946 or earlier, a group representing some 230,000 people. Appointments are being offered through an online portal and the 811 Health Link phone line. Shots are also being offered to this cohort at more than 100 pharmacies in Calgary, Red Deer and Edmonton starting in early March and the government has said there are also plans to include doctors’ offices. Health Minister Tyler Shandro has said all eligible seniors should have their first shots by the end of March. But he said Monday that the province will not give Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to anyone over the age of 65 after the National Advisory Committee on Immunization expressed concerned there is limited data on how well it will work in older populations. The first phase of the vaccine rollout also included anyone over 65 who lives in a First Nations or Metis community, various front-line health care workers, paramedics and emergency medical responders. Phase 2 of the rollout, to begin in April, is to start with those 65 and up, Indigenous people older than 50 and staff and residents of licensed supportive living seniors’ facilities not previously included. --- British Columbia British Columbia will extend the time between the first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccines to four months so all adults could get their initial shot by the end of July. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says evidence from the province and around the world shows protection of at least 90 per cent from the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines. The province launched the second phase of its immunization campaign Monday and health authorities will begin contacting residents and staff of independent living centres, those living in seniors' supportive housing as well as homecare support clients and staff. Seniors aged 90 and up can call to make their appointment starting next Monday, followed a week later by those aged 85 and over, and a week after that by those 80 and up. Henry also says first responders and essential workers may be eligible to get vaccinated starting in April as the province also decides on a strategy for the newly authorized AstraZeneca vaccine. --- Nunavut The territory says it expects enough vaccines for 75 per cent of its population over the age of 18. After a COVID-19 vaccine is administered, patients will be tracked to ensure they are properly notified to receive their second dose. Nunavut's priority populations are being vaccinated first. They include residents of shelters, people ages 60 years and up, staff and inmates and correctional facilities, first responders and front-line health-care staff. --- Northwest Territories The Northwest Territories its priority groups — such as people over 60, front-line health workers and those living in remote communities — are being vaccinated The territory says it expects to vaccine the rest of its adult population starting this month. --- Yukon Yukon says it will receive enough vaccine to immunize 75 per cent of its adult population by the end of March. Priority for vaccinations has been given to residents and staff in long-term care homes, group homes and shelters, as well as health-care workers and personal support workers. People over the age of 80 who are not living in long-term care, and those living in rural and remote communities, including Indigenous Peoples, are also on the priority list for shots. --- This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 2, 2021. The Canadian Press
Another type of COVID-19 vaccine was authorized by Health Canada on Friday. The new vaccines are manufactured by AstraZeneca, and developed in partnership with Oxford University. Canada also approved the Serum Institute of India’s version of the AstraZeneca vaccine. Afterwards, Anita Anand, the Minister of Public Services and Procurement announced that Canada has secured two million doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine through an agreement with Verity Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc./Serum Institute of India. AstraZeneca has licensed the manufacture of its ChAdOx1 vaccine to the Serum Institute. The first 500,000 doses will be delivered to Canada in the coming weeks. The remaining 1.5 million doses are expected to arrive by mid-May. “The Government of Canada continues to do everything possible to protect Canadians from COVID-19. This includes securing a highly diverse and extensive portfolio of vaccines and taking all necessary measures to ready the country to receive them,” Anand said in a release. “We remain fully on track to ensure that there will be a sufficient supply so that every eligible Canadian who wants a vaccine will have access to one by the end of September. I am grateful for the collaboration of our partners in India to finalize this agreement, and I look forward to continuing to work closely together in the weeks ahead.” The two million doses secured through this agreement are in addition to the 20 million doses already secured through an earlier agreement with AstraZeneca. Health Canada’s authorization of the AstraZeneca vaccine allows the Government of Canada to advance its work with AstraZeneca to finalize delivery schedules for the 20 million doses. The application for authorization from AstraZeneca was received on Oct. 1, 2020 and from from Verity Pharmaceuticals Inc./Serum Institute of India (in partnership with AstraZeneca Canada Inc.) on January 23, 2021. After thorough, independent reviews of the evidence, the Department has determined that these vaccines meet Canada’s stringent safety, efficacy and quality requirements. These are the first viral vector-based vaccines authorized in Canada. These are also two-dose regiments and can be kept refrigerated for at least six months. Health Canada’s authorization of the Verity Pharmaceuticals Inc./Serum Institute of India product relies on the assessment of its comparability to the AstraZeneca-produced version of the vaccine.. These vaccines were authorized with terms and conditions under Health Canada’s Interim Order on the importation of drugs for COVID-19 The process allowed Health Canada to assess information submitted by the manufacturer as it became available during the product development process, while maintaining Canadian standards. Health Canada has placed terms and conditions on the authorizations requiring the manufacturers to continue providing information to Health Canada on the safety, efficacy and quality of the vaccines to ensure their benefits continue to be demonstrated through market use. Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada will closely monitor the safety. Michael Oleksyn, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince Albert Daily Herald
TORONTO — The Toronto Black Film Festival is hosting a panel discussion series with a title that speaks to a pervasive problem in the industry: Show Me the Money. Amid a racial reckoning sparked by the police killing of George Floyd last May, it seems awareness is heightened, and arts organizations are paying attention to systemic racism and barriers facing Black creators in Canada's film and TV industry, says festival president and founder Fabienne Colas. But money isn't flowing throughout the entire ecosystem, and there's still a lack of representation onscreen and in leadership positions behind the scenes, Colas adds. That needs to change soon, because as the clock ticks, "tons of white people are making decisions on what's going to be funded to go onscreen next year, and in two years," she says. "Billions of dollars are going through this industry, and tens of millions of dollars are being distributed through our public funders, and they don't necessarily go to Black producers and Black filmmakers. That's the problem," says Colas. As Colas's festival, which runs online through Sunday, and other screen projects help mark Black History Month in Canada, those in the country's arts world say the past year has been a critical one in terms of institutions responding to the calling out of racism, tokenism and microaggressions. Several organizations have announced funding for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Colour) creators in Canada in the past year. Last summer, for instance, Telefilm Canada pledged $100,000 a year towards the creation of a Black Screen Office, and Bell Media partnered with the grassroots organization BIPOC TV & Film. But "the Canadian screen world has a long way to go," says Amanda Parris, a CBC TV and Radio host, writer, and playwright behind the monodrama "The Death News," which is part of the new CBC Gem anthology series "21 Black Futures" from CBC Arts and Obsidian Theatre in Toronto. "I feel like Canada is decades behind when it comes to representation onscreen of Black stories by Black creators," Parris says. "It's really depressing. And I think being so close to the United States and to the United Kingdom and seeing the things that are emerging there, it's hard to imagine when the time will come when Canada will see similar stories." Parris points to director Steve McQueen's recent "Small Axe" anthology series of five films for the BBC and Amazon Prime Video, which tells the story of London’s West Indian community. "It really hit home because there's such a huge Caribbean diaspora that lives here in Canada that has yet to see their historical stories told with the level of production, deep nuance of storytelling, the kind of budget that he clearly had," says Parris. Parris was born in the U.K. and felt a connection to the material but also "a certain level of sadness" at the idea that such programming may not be possible here for a while, she says. "I'm so reticent to have faith in a lot of the promises that have been made by so many of the networks. I'm not sure if they're going to feel a fire under them when the protests die down and when things get quieter in the same way." If Canada wants to have a vibrant screen industry, it needs to give everyone access to the same resources, says Colas. "Because otherwise, you're going to have white films that are really well done, and then you're going to have, what — Black films very low budget?" she says. "It doesn't make sense. So we need great, well-funded film across the board." Colas, who also founded film festivals in cities including Halifax and Montreal, says the Toronto instalment that's in its ninth edition still doesn't have all the support it needs from the industry. But several new partners have come onboard this year. She also sits on various diversity committees and says "things are moving in the right direction." Parris says she's encouraged by several projects underway in Canada, including the upcoming CBC series "The Porter," about railway workers in the historically Black Montreal community of Little Burgundy in the 1920s. Director Charles Officer, who helmed Parris's "The Death News," is working on the series along with several other Black creators. Then there's the CBC News prime-time show "Canada Tonight with Ginella Massa" and the new YouTube news program “The Brandon Gonez Show," launched in January by the titular Toronto broadcaster, who left CP24 to launch the project. Parris says Gonez as well as The Black Academy, recently launched by Toronto actor-brothers Shamier Anderson and Stephan James, are among several examples of a shift "away from a lot of these mainstream institutions to Black folks being like, 'What can we build ourselves?'" Anderson says he thinks change is happening, with even major Canadian broadcasters acknowledging a lack of diversity in their ranks, for instance. But "it needs to happen faster," he adds, noting The Black Academy is still looking for more funding besides that offered by the Canada Media Fund, as it builds its own award show and programming. "All these speeches and throne speeches and mandates and black squares and hashtags — I think we've got to put the money on the table, put the money where your mouth is," says Anderson. "Putting a social post just is not enough." In the theatre world, there's also "a very heightened, almost panicked awareness of the lack of diversity and the lack of Black representation," says Obsidian Theatre artistic director Mumbi Tindyebwa Otu, who conceived the idea for "21 Black Futures." Tindyebwa Otu says that conversation needs to extend beyond the faces seen onstage to those backstage and in the board rooms, so theatre companies don't burden any single individual working within a historically white institution to speak for the whole race. The "21 Black Futures" series, she says, is "almost like a catalogue of an example of who's out there and saying, 'Look at their work, see what they have to say, listen to their stories and contact these individuals,' so that there's never an excuse in the future of 'I have no idea who to reach out to or who to connect to' in the future.'" Black History Month gives institutions a convenient opportunity to think of funding and programming for four weeks out of the year, but the big shift is in realizing that "Black people are living these lives all year round," says Tindyebwa Otu. "Good for you for becoming more aware, but this is an investment, this is our daily lives, this is not a moment, this is our reality." This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 18, 2021. Victoria Ahearn, The Canadian Press
NEW YORK — Before a late night rehearsal in December, Terrence Floyd couldn’t remember the last time he squatted on a drum throne, sticks in hand and ready to perform. Surely, he said, it had not happened since his brother, George Floyd, died at the hands of police in Minneapolis last May, sparking a global reckoning over systemic racism and police brutality. Now, Terrence is lending a talent he honed as a youngster in a church band to help produce and promote a forthcoming album of protest anthems inspired by the Black Lives Matter demonstrations prompted in part by his brother's death. “I want to pay my respects to my brother any way I can, whether it’s a march, whether it’s just talking to somebody about him, or whether it’s doing what I do and playing the drums,” Terrence told The Associated Press. “His heartbeat is not beating no more,” he said, “but I can beat for him.” The untitled project, set for release one year after George Floyd’s death, follows a long history of racial justice messages and protest slogans crossing over into American popular music and culture. In particular, music has been a vehicle for building awareness of grassroots movements, often carrying desperate pleas or enraged battle cries across the airwaves. Terrence was recruited for the project by the Rev. Kevin McCall, a New York City activist who said he believes an album of street-inspired protest anthems does not yet exist. “These protest chants that were created have been monumental,” said McCall. “It created a movement and not a moment.” Some songs make bold declarations, like the protest anthem album’s lead single, “No Justice No Peace.” The well-known protest refrain, popularized in the U.S. in the 1980s, is something that millennials grew up hearing before they joined the front lines of their generation’s civil rights movement, McCall said. McCall is featured on the track, along with his fiancée, singer Malikka Miller, and choir members from Brooklyn’s Grace Tabernacle Christian Center. The song is currently available for purchase and streaming on iTunes, Amazon Music and YouTube. Godfather Records, a label run and owned by David Wright, pastor of Grace Tabernacle Christian Center, plans to put out the seven-song album. His late father, Timothy Wright, is considered the “Godfather of gospel music.” “We’re mixing gospel music with social justice, to reach the masses,” Wright said. “We have always been strengthened through songs, like ‘We Shall Overcome’ and ‘Wade in the Water.’ I want to put a new twist on it.” There is a history of interplay between music and Black protest. The 1991 beating of Rodney King by Los Angeles Police Department officers — as well as the contemporary “war on drugs” — amplified NWA’s 1988 anthem, “F(asterisk)(asterisk)(asterisk) tha Police,” and Public Enemy’s “Fight the Power,” released in 1989. More recently, Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright,” Beyoncé’s “Freedom” featuring Lamar, and YG’s “FDT” provided a soundtrack for many BLM protests. Legendary musician and activist Stevie Wonder released his hit 1980 song, “Happy Birthday,” as part of a campaign to recognize the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr’s birthday as a federal holiday. King’s Day, which faced years of opposition at the national level, was officially recognized in 1986, three years after it won the backing of federal lawmakers. Some historians cite Billie Holiday’s musical rendition of the Abel Meeropol poem, “Strange Fruit,” in 1939 as one of the sparks of the civil rights movement. The song paints in devastating detail the period of lynching carried out against Black Americans for decades after the abolition of slavery, often as a way to terrorize and oppress those who sought racial equality. The new film “United States vs. Billie Holiday” depicts the jazz luminary’s real-life struggle to perform the song in spite of opposition from government officials. Singer and actress Andra Day, who portrays Holiday in the film, recently told the AP the song's significance influenced her decision to take on the role. “It was her singing this song in defiance of the government that reinvigorated the movement,” Day said. “And so that was really incentivizing for me.” Todd Boyd, the Katherine and Frank Price Endowed Chair for the Study of Race and Popular Culture at the University of Southern California, said many of the most well-known protest chants came out of the civil rights and Black power movements, and then inspired songs. “That’s how culture works,” Boyd said. “Something that starts out in one space can very easily grow into something bigger and broader, if the movement itself is influential.” Terrence Floyd said the protest anthem project feels like a fitting way to honour his brother’s memory. Many years before his death, George Floyd dabbled in music — he was occasionally invited to rap on mixtapes produced by DJ Screw, a fixture of the local hip-hop scene in Houston. “If his music couldn’t make it out of Houston, I’m using my Floyd musical ability to reach people in his name,” Terrence said. ___ AP entertainment reporter Jamia Pugh in Philadelphia contributed. ___ Morrison is a member of the AP’s Race and Ethnicity team. Follow him on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/aaronlmorrison. Aaron Morrison, The Associated Press
Businesses can’t survive lockdowns without more help, according to some of participants in a virtual meeting organized by the past president of the West Nipissing Chamber of Commerce. Government and community leaders, along with the Chamber’s board of directors, took part in the meeting facilitated by past Chamber president and local business owner, Joanne Valliere. The topic was about how the extended lockdown is impacting small businesses across the region. Many local business owners say they are facing financial hardships and do not feel that the current government funding and resources are sufficient. “It has been evident that local businesses are struggling, and the government grants and loans are not cutting it. It’s not the same offering curbside, it can’t make up for the loss that we are having,” Valliere, said. “Owners and their employees are feeling the financial pressure. If the lockdown is extended past March 8, we will lose many small businesses this time. It is possible for businesses to open in a safe way.” Rebecca Foisy, executive director of the West Nipissing Chamber, has been an advocate for small business owners in the region. “I am in constant contact with Chamber members, listening to their feedback to address their concerns,” said Foisy. “Local business owners want to reopen their businesses in a safe manner, and I’m working closely with the Ontario Chamber of Commerce to bring these concerns to the attention of government officials.” In the session, Liberal MP for Nickel Belt, Marc Serré, declared that his office will be making an official request to determine what data the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit is utilizing that lead to the extended lockdown in the region. The full meeting is available for viewing on YouTube HERE. Dave Dale is a Local Journalism Reporter with BayToday.ca. LJI is funded by the Government of Canada. Dave Dale, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, BayToday.ca
With offices closed during the pandemic and many kids kept out of the classroom, families have scrambled to carve out functional remote-learning spaces in homes that weren’t designed for the job. Faced with space constraints, acoustic challenges, and shortages of office furniture, even architects — experts in conceptualizing interior spaces with time and budget constraints — are struggling to keep up with the demands that school closures are putting on their small, open-concept homes.With flexible use of materials, strategic re-arranging, shared workspaces, multi-use surfaces, and purpose-built structures, five Toronto architects show us how they carved out space for their children to feel comfortable, productive, and even inspired as they continue to learn online:FLEXIBLE FURNISHINGWho: Kevin Bridgman, KPMB Architects, with Elke, 7Kevin Bridgman has been working at home since his office closed in March. To accommodate Elke being at home as well, he created two separate work-stations for her — one for school and one for breaks — by substituting Ikea Lisabo coffee tables for desks, which were sold out across the city. He wanted an adaptable longer-term solution — the tables, which are the perfect height to be a child’s desk now, are small, portable, and flexible enough to serve different purposes in the house when Elke no longer needs them. "The space behind me formed because Elke’s been wanting to sit with me and work when her classes are done," says Bridgman. "It used to be a nook for an electric piano, but we reconfigured the dining room and it’s become a LEGO station. Now a lot of days we sit back-to-back, so when I’m on my zoom calls or sketching at the dining room table, she’s behind me in her LEGO world." CUSTOM-BUILT SPACEWho: Lola Sheppard and Mason White, Lateral Office, with Lucas 15, and Zoe 12Lola Sheppard and Mason White added extra space to their small, open concept home with a custom designed garden studio by MacroSPACE. The fully insulated, four-season module, which arrives in pre-fabricated panels to be assembled on site, works as a study space, den, and music room, and gives teenagers a place to hang out, slightly apart from the house. The components of the $39,000 structure take about six to eight weeks to be made in a local workshop and, at under 100 square-foot, the finished structure does not require a permit. “It’s only 50 feet away, but we have to leave the house to walk to it which is really nice,” says Sheppard. RE-ARRANGING MAGICWho: Megan Cassidy, Nakamura Cassidy Design Architects, and Haji Nakamura, SVN, with Miro, 9Megan Cassidy and Haji Nakamura co-parent and share an office on the second floor. To keep up with the evolving demands of the pandemic, they have done some re-arranging magic, moving and re-purposing existing furniture to create completely different spaces. In spring, their sun-drenched dining area was first cleared out for a yoga studio, then it was converted back to a dining room. Now, it's been adapted again to a hybrid working space for Miro and family reading nook, created by rotating the dining table (where the family still eats all their meals and read in the morning sun) 45 degrees, opening up space to bring in an Eames lounger from the living room for the new lounge area."With three people working in the house, we have to make every space work really, really hard," says Cassidy.CREATING COMFORTYusef Frasier, Supergraphiq, and Kristy Almond Frasier, Almond Frasier Architect, with Naomie, 7, and Marcus, 4 With both parents already working in their compact townhome, each had to make room in their existing workspaces to accommodate one of their children. Frasier, an architectural renderer and visualization expert, shares his double-wide workstation (which is large enough to accommodate four monitors for his visually intensive work) made with two side by side CB2 Go-Cart rolling desks and TPS file cabinets. The extra wide desk makes room for Naomie to take over one of the workstations and for Marcus to join them when Almond Frasier is busy with calls downstairs. After pleading that having two screens like Dad would make her more efficient at school, Naomie recently hooked up a second monitor — one for zoom and one for work— and is slowly setting up a customized space for herself with strategically placed items on her desk and a tailored background for her zoom calls."You’re trying to create some level of comfort within an entirely new and abstract setup and each individual is finding their own way to do that," says Yusef Frasier. "Every few days Naomie draws a piece of artwork to put on this ‘wall of happiness’ that we have beside my desk. Her plan is to wrap that around the whole space like a mural." TEMPORARY FIXESAndrew and Jodi Batay-Csorba, Batay-Csorba Architects, with Kingsley, 7 and spaniel Duke Andrew and Jodi Batay-Csorba live with their son Kingsley on the second and third floor above their street-level storefront office. The couple is in the process of building a custom designed plywood platform bed for Kingsley’s room that will incorporate his bed, desk, and climbing wall, above an Ikea dresser and kitchen cabinets for storage. But for now, with the rest of Batay-Csorba’s staff working remotely, Kingsley is able to join his parents downstairs at the big studio table. In place of traditional, compartmentalized workstations, a large, shared table is a fixture of most design practices so adding Kinsgley (and even spaniel, Duke) to the table is a natural solution."Our renovated storefront is east facing with a floor-to-ceiling window so we try to work and have meetings there as much as possible because of the great light," says Andrew Batay-Csorba. "Kingsley is there with us for now trying to do everything but focus on school." — Emily Waugh is a writer and educator in Landscape Architecture and is currently completing the Certificate in Health Impact at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. Emily Waugh, The Canadian Press
TORONTO — Health Canada has approved two more rapid tests that can indicate the prevalence of COVID-19 immunity, devices experts say should be used judiciously but can help ensure the success of vaccines. While there’s a more urgent push for rapid diagnostic tests to find current COVID-19 cases in the community, experts welcomed additional tools to reveal previous infections and antibodies that can shield populations from further outbreaks. Occupational and public health expert Thomas Tenkate notes many questions still surround emerging COVID-19 vaccines, including what level of protection is required for immunity, how long vaccines guard against infection, and whether and how various populations may respond differently. That's where strategic use of serology tests come in, such as the two point-of-care ones that got the green light Feb. 12, which join a list of others previously approved. While it’s believed previous COVID-19 infections may offer some immunity, exactly how much and for how long is not clear, and experts still advise recovered patients get a vaccine. "It really (provides) population-based research that will help in prevention, and better ways to fight the virus," says Tenkate, an associate professor at Ryerson University. Unlike diagnostic tests that reveal active infections, serology tests detect the presence of antibodies sparked by previous infection or a successful response to a COVID-19 vaccine. But the information they provide is limited and prone to misinterpretation, cautions Tenkate, who says the tests should be administered and interpreted by a health-care professional. Such dangers are highlighted in a New England Journal of Medicine article in which two FDA officials regret the way emergency approvals arrived in the United States in March 2020. "Knowing what we know now, we would not have permitted serology tests to be marketed without FDA review and authorization, even within the limits we initially imposed," Jeffrey Shuren and Timothy Stenzel say in the current print issue dated Thursday. The co-authors say government officials over-promoted the role of serology tests in reopening the economy, while the market was flooded with questionable products, some which performed poorly and many marketed in a way that conflicted with FDA policy. The FDA changed its policy May 4 to assess product claims, and by Feb. 1, 2021, had removed listings for 225 tests from its website, issued 15 warning letters, and placed 88 firms on import alert for violations. Serology tests aren't available for at-home use in Canada but the curious can obtain a test privately — LifeLabs advertises a $75 test on its website for residents in Ontario and British Columbia. Susan Paish, co-chair of the federal COVID-19 Testing and Screening Expert Advisory Panel, finds it hard to see the benefit of a serology test for individuals, stressing the value they offer in evaluating broader testing and vaccine strategy. Surveillance data can reveal things such as whether certain populations are more prone to asymptomatic infection, says Paish. "That's important to know because asymptomatic individuals can certainly spread the virus," says Paish. "You can make sure that you pay special attention to those individuals, make sure they're vaccinated." National efforts are underway to better understand immunity through Statistics Canada, in partnership with Health Canada, the Public Health Agency of Canada and the COVID-19 Immunity Task Force. The voluntary Canadian COVID-19 Antibody and Health Survey is mailing thousands of blood sample collection kits to measure the prevalence of COVID-19 antibodies among Canadians, including those who never had symptoms. Health Canada's new approvals include one from China’s Assure Tech and a point-of-care device by BTNX Inc. of Markham, Ont. The Canadian test produces results in 15 minutes from a fingerstick blood sample, says chief financial officer Mitch Pittaway. It's meant to be delivered by a health-care professional in a clinic or health-care setting. He says clients in Europe include people who suspect they had COVID-19 but never displayed symptoms. "We see it used in dentists, doctor's office, any kind of clinics, pharmacies by the pharmacist on site," Pittaway says of overseas sales. "And really people who are, let's say, pre-vaccine. People who have been sick and are looking ... to confirm if they have in fact contracted COVID." Paish says comprehensive testing and screening programs will likely be needed in various environments such as long-term care facilities and workplaces, "until such time as we are really clear on the impact and accuracy of the vaccine programs." "It would be dangerous for society to think that once vaccines start to roll out there is no place for testing and screening strategies," she says. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 18, 2021. Cassandra Szklarski, The Canadian Press
YEREVAN, Armenia — Political tensions in Armenia heightened Monday, with supporters of the embattled prime minister and the opposition each staging massive rallies in the capital. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan has faced opposition demands to resign since he signed a peace deal in November that ended six weeks of intense fighting with Azerbaijan over the Nagorno-Karabakh region. The Russia-brokered agreement saw Azerbaijan reclaim control over large parts of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding areas that had been held by Armenian forces for more than a quarter-century. Opposition protests seeking Pashinyan's ouster abated during the winter but intensified last week amid a rift between him and the country's military leaders. The spat was sparked by Pashinyan firing a deputy chief of the military's General Staff who had laughed off the prime minister's claim that only 10% of Russia-supplied Iskander missiles that Armenia used in the conflict exploded on impact. The General Staff then demanded Pashinyan’s resignation, and he responded by dismissing the General Staff chief, Col. Gen. Onik Gasparyan. The dismissal has yet to be approved by Armenia's largely ceremonial president, Armen Sarkissian, who sent it back to Pashinyan, saying the move was unconstitutional. Pashinyan quickly resubmitted the demand for the general's ouster, and the prime minister's allies warned that the president could be impeached if he fails to endorse the move. Sarkissian's office responded with a strongly worded statement condemning “inadmissible speculation” about his move and emphasizing that his decision was “unbiased and driven exclusively by national interests.” Amid the escalating tensions, a group of protesters broke into a government building in central Yerevan on Monday to press their demand for Pashinyan's resignation, but they left shortly afterward without violence. Later, Pashinyan's supporters and the opposition rallied in the capital at separate sites. Pashinyan, a 45-year-old former journalist who came to power after leading large street protests in 2018 that ousted his predecessor, still enjoys broad support despite the country's humiliating defeat in Nagorno-Karabakh and the opposition calls for his resignation. He defended the peace deal as a painful but necessary move to prevent Azerbaijan from overrunning the entire Nagorno-Karabakh region, which lies within Azerbaijan but was under the control of ethnic Armenian forces backed by Armenia since a separatist war there ended in 1994. The fighting with Azerbaijan that erupted in late September and lasted 44 days has left more than 6,000 people dead. Russia has deployed about 2,000 peacekeepers to monitor the Nov. 10 peace deal. Armenia has relied on Moscow’s financial and military support and hosts a Russian military base — ties that will keep the two nations closely allied regardless of the outcome of the political infighting. Last week, the Russian Defence Ministry rebuked the Armenian leader for criticism of the Iskander missile, a state-of-the-art weapon touted by the military for its accuracy. The Russian military said it was “bewildered” to hear Pashinyan’s claim because Armenia hadn’t used an Iskander missile in the conflict. In a bid to repair the damage to Armenia's ties with Moscow, Pashinyan rescinded his claim Monday, acknowledging that he made the statement after being misled. —- Associated Press writer Vladimir Isachenkov in Moscow contributed. Avet Demourian, The Associated Press
Fresh air, blazing speed and spacious alpine terrain makes skiing and snowboarding low-risk activities for COVID-19 transmission, infectious disease doctors say. But the threat is never zero during a global pandemic, they add. And people working those snowy slopes may be at greater risk of catching the virus than those dashing down them. Most ski hills in Ontario were permitted to reopen Tuesday, joining other mountainous resorts across the country that have remained operational through the winter. Many have implemented extra safety precautions and operate under local restrictions, including asking patrons to wear face coverings on lifts, cancelling classes and limiting access to indoor spaces. While the activity of skiing is relatively safe from a transmission standpoint, experts say spread can still happen, and COVID outbreaks have been reported at larger resorts over the last couple months, mostly affecting staff members. One in Kelowna, B.C., in December began with workers living on site before it sprawled to include more than 130 cases. Popular Lake Louise and Nakiska resorts in Alberta also reported outbreaks among staff. Dr. Andrew Boozary, the executive director of population health and social medicine at the University Health Network, says it's clusters of cases like those that make ski hills concerning. "I have no anti-skiing bias — it's an activity that makes a whole lot of sense in Canada — but there's a lot of people who take on risk to ensure a ski hill is operational," he said. "A lot of the time we rely on people who are in temporary work or who've been underpaid, without living wages and without paid sick leave, to take on risk so some of us can have that pleasure and leisure activity." Boozary likened the recent emphasis on ski hills to that of golf courses over the summer, or to policy around cottages and seasonal vacation homes that were tailored to higher-income populations. Skiing, like golf, isn't affordable to everyone, he says. And while Boozary agrees that skiing and snowboarding can provide mental health benefits of exercise in a low-risk setting, he'd like to see more emphasis on ensuring lower-income populations have safe, outdoor spaces too. "We've seen this dichotomy, this tale of two pandemics. And we're seeing it now with skiing," Boozary said. "There's an income divide on who gets access to these spaces." Dr. Ilan Schwartz, an infectious disease expert with the University of Alberta, says staff members at ski resorts are more likely than visitors to become infected because of the close proximity workers tend to be in. Sometimes they share indoor spaces like lunchrooms, which aren't conducive to mask-wearing when people are eating, Schwartz says, and "transmission thrives" in those settings. "The likelihood of infection is going to be a function of physical proximity, the amount of time they're in that proximity, the activities they're doing and whether there are precautions taken to minimize transmission." While skiers will generally be safe, those who wish to hit the slopes still need to be mindful of safety precautions, Schwartz says. He added that spread is more likely to happen before or after people glide down the mountains, like when they put on ski boots in a crowded indoor area. Those spots should be avoided when possible, Schwartz says, and masks should be worn when distance can't be maintained. Other factors could make trips to snowy resorts more dangerous, he added, including guests travelling from COVID hot spots and potentially bringing the virus with them into small ski towns. The rise of new variants of concern might require more stringent restrictions on skiers as well, says Parisa Ariya, a chemistry professor at McGill University who specializes in aerosol transmission. Ariya says while outdoor settings are far safer than indoors, spread "actually does happen outside" in some instances, and she recommends wearing a mask while skiing or snowboarding. Winters in Quebec and Ontario make air more dense, Ariya adds, which could have an impact on how long viral particles stay in the atmosphere. Dr. Sumon Chakrabarti, an infectious disease expert in Mississauga, Ont., says that while cold air may cause physical changes to aerosols "it does not translate to increased risk of disease transmission." He says risk of outdoor spread remains "quite low," except for situations with large crowds in close contact, like during concerts or sporting events. "From a public health standpoint I would much rather see 50 people skiing outdoors than a group of 10 watching TV together indoors," he said. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 16, 2020. Melissa Couto Zuber, The Canadian Press
(RCMP New Brunswick - image credit) New Brunswick RCMP seized 17 unsecured long guns hidden in the wall of a home in Tobique First Nation last week, resulting in the arrest of a 68-year-old man. In a statement, police said the man was later released pending a court appearance in April at Woodstock provincial court. Police executed a search warrant at the home on Fourth Street on the evening of Feb 26, as part of an ongoing investigation. These guns were found inside the wall of the residence. Police said a large amount of cash was also discovered during the "extensive search of the property," but didn't disclose how much. In a photo released by RCMP there, several $50 and $100 bills were visible. The investigation was conducted as part of a co-ordinated law enforcement approach with West District RCMP and RCMP police dog services and involvement from the Woodstock Police Force and Fredericton Police Force.
The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada (all times eastern):10:40 a.m.Ontario is reporting 1,023 new cases of COVID-19 today and six more deaths attributed to the novel coronavirus.Health Minister Christine Elliott says of the new cases, 280 are in Toronto, 182 are in Peel Region and 72 are in Ottawa.Ontario says 939 more cases were resolved since the last daily report.More than 17,000 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine were administered in the province since Sunday's update.This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 1, 2021. The Canadian Press
Infectious disease experts and COVID-19 modelers are sounding alarm bells of an approaching third wave expected to be driven by more contagious variants of the virus.But while we brace for Wave 3, some are wondering if we ever actually cleared Wave 2, especially in populous areas of the country where transmission has remained more steady.Experts say the definition of what constitutes a "wave" and pinpointing when it's passed isn't so clear.Some say we're on the tail end of the second wave now, as evidenced by the downward trend of cases across the country, while others say ebbs and flows haven't been uniform enough to determine when one wave ends and another begins. Caroline Colijn, a COVID modeler and mathematician at Simon Fraser University, says the word "wave" has been somewhat misleading. Waves of viruses tend to ease up on their own as immunity grows within a population, she says, which we haven't reached yet with COVID.Instead, the ebb and flow of SARS-CoV-2 has been dictated by our own actions, Colijn added, for instance restrictive measures that limit the ability of the virus to spread."This isn't a wave, it's a forest fire," Colijn said. "We turn the hoses off and the flames build up again and we get exponential growth. Then we turn the hoses back on and cases decrease." Colijn, whose modelling predicts steep rises in cases around the end of February in six of Canada's biggest provinces, says the challenge of "wave language" is that when waves recede, people think the threat has ceded with it.But until we reach levels of herd immunity, she says, that's not going to happen."We're not seeing a natural tailing off. We're seeing things drop because of restrictions — those fire hoses we put in front of the fire," she said. "Then we turn the hoses off and we're surprised that this wave is coming back."Canada's top doctors said Friday that eight provinces have reported cases of new COVID variants, with three of them showing evidence of community transmission.Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam said there had been 429 cases of the variant first identified in the U.K., 28 cases of the variant first identified in South Africa, and one of the variant first found in Brazil.While it sounds like a small number compared to our population, University of Manitoba virologist Jason Kindrachuk says the heightened transmissibility of those variants makes the situation more alarming.Compounding things further is that true prevalence of the variants nationwide is unknown, he added, though some jurisdictions have been doing point-prevalence studies to help determine that. Kindrachuk says one or two cases, when caught early and isolated, aren't too concerning. But danger proliferates as more pop up."You have that initial fire and then sparks start flying ... and that leads to a bunch of small fires," he said. "If those start to catch, you lose the ability to necessarily keep things in control." Dr. Howard Njoo, Canada's deputy chief public health officer, says the presence of more transmissible variants means people should be more diligent in adhering to current safety measures aimed at slowing the spread of other COVID strains, including limiting contacts, mask-wearing and distancing.The spike in variant cases comes at a time when Canada appears to be "two-thirds of the way down the curve," Tam said, as overall COVID cases fall.Some jurisdictions, like Ontario, have taken that as reason to reopen. Most of the province is moving away from its stay-at-home orders next week, even though projections released Thursday show a potentially rapid rise by late February. Dr. Andrew Morris, an infectious disease expert with the University of Toronto, says reopening Ontario now could lead to further lockdowns in the province later."I anticipate our numbers over the next two weeks are going to be pretty good, but it's four weeks from now, six weeks from now that I'm most concerned about," he said.Troy Day, a COVID modeler out of Queen's University, says the problem with the variants is that they're still lurking beneath the surface. And they may not truly be seen until they take hold more firmly.Day said he's concerned about a third wave in Canada because places like Britain have shown similar trajectories."Cases go down and you think everything's OK, but underneath is actually an increase in variant cases that will eventually dominate everything," he said.Day says the word wave is "funny terminology," adding he's been hesitant to definitively label the ups and downs of COVID case counts that way."All the waves we've seen are driven largely by what we're doing to control it," Day said. "The more we open up and shut down, the more multiple waves we'll have."This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 12, 2021. Melissa Couto Zuber, The Canadian Press
Dans le cadre de la journée santé et ressourcement pour le communautaire, la concertation régionale des organismes communautaires de l'Abitibi-Témiscamingue (CROC-AT) a participé, avec cinq autres régions à un zoom interrégional afin de souligner la campagne « Engagez-vous pour le communautaire » ainsi que pour la journée mondiale de la justice sociale. Un salon santé et ressourcement L’animation de la rencontre était assurée par l’artiste québécois Yves Lambert pour divertir tout en musique et en conte ce moment privilégié. « Au niveau de l’Abitibi-Témiscamingue, le comité mobilisation de la région a organisé un salon santé et ressourcement pour le milieu communautaire de manière virtuel » a déclaré David-Alexandre Desrosiers de la CROC-AT. Les participants à cette grande rencontre ont également pris le temps de d’échanger d’anecdotes cocasses ainsi que des belles expériences vécues dans les organismes. L’enjeu de l’épuisement professionnel Le contexte de la pandémie a démontré comment le rôle des organismes communautaires est très important et comment ils ont tenu à bout de bras une partie importante du filet social, pendant la pandémie de la COVID-19. La journée santé et ressourcement pour le communautaire pour souligner leur rôle et la grande valeur ajoutée de ces organismes dans la vie de tous les jours. « Plusieurs activités ont eu lieu : un conteur sur l’heure du midi, une séance d’étirement ergonomique, une conférence sur l’épuisement professionnel, une séance de yoga et d’art-thérapie » fait savoir David-Alexandre Desrosiers. Un moment pour recharger leur batterie Pour souligner à leur façon la Journée mondiale pour la justice sociale, six regroupements régionaux d’organismes communautaires autonomes se sont mobilisés afin de créer une journée de ressourcement pour ces artisan(e)s qui visent à améliorer la qualité de vie dans leur communauté. Partout au Québec, des actions ont eu lieu aujourd’hui, dans le cadre de la campagne « Engagez-vous pour le communautaire ». « Il était important pour nous que les travailleuses et les travailleurs du mouvement prennent un moment pour recharger leur batterie. C’est notre façon de leur montrer à quel point, elles et ils font la différence au quotidien dans leur communauté » a-t-il conclu. Moulay Hicham Mouatadid, Initiative de journalisme local, Reflet Témiscamien (Le)
Peel Public Health says it made a mistake in some of its information sent home to parents regarding advice for asymptomatic children sent home from school. While its website says they can isolate with a caregiver, the flyer did not. Matthew Bingley reports.
(CBC - image credit) David Diamond, Eastern Health's president and chief executive officer, said St. Clare's Hospital is still safe. Two more staff members from a ward at St. Clare's Mercy Hospital in St. John's have tested positive for COVID-19, Eastern Health chief executive officer David Diamond said Monday. That brings the total number of staff and patients from the beleaguered 6 East unit with the disease up to 12: seven staff members and five patients. The ward is now closed for a two-week "circuit breaker," said Diamond. He said the remaining patients had been transferred on Sunday night. Over the weekend, 1,500 staff and patients of St. Clare's hospital were tested. Diamond said 90 per cent of the test results are back, and all except the two new cases are negative. At a media conference, he said that shows "we're not dealing with an outbreak that is more broadly based." About 150 people are still waiting for their test results. Timeline of outbreak CBC News reported last Tuesday that two people who didn't have COVID-19 when they went into St. Clare's became sick with the virus that causes it. On Feb. 10, an Eastern Health employee at St. Clare's learned they were positive while at work. That person had worked while waiting for the COVID-19 test result. That didn't break any rules or regulations — they had been told by the health authority that the current policy meant they would continue to work their scheduled shifts at the hospital after getting swabbed for the virus. It's still not clear how people at St. Clare's initially became infected with the virus, said Dr. Natalie Bridger, Eastern Health's clinical chief of infection prevention and control. She said an investigation is trying to find links between cases, and possible breaches. But it is possible that they might not ever find a source, she added. Diamond said the hospital is still safe for workers and patients. "We've not found this to be anything other than an outbreak on one unit," he said. Monday's news conference follows another from last Friday, when Eastern Health addressed numerous questions that had gone unanswered for days about St. Clare's. Health Minister John Haggie last Wednesday insisted there was "no outbreak" at St. Clare's and that the situation had been "contained." On Friday, when Eastern Health confirmed more positive cases from the ward in question, Haggie said that situation had now changed, and that the information he had had when he made the original comments had also changed. Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador
TORONTO — Canadian jazz pianist Oscar Peterson’s legendary career is being celebrated in a Heritage Minute.Historica Canada released the newest clip, timed for Black History Month, in its ongoing series that highlights influential figures from across the country.The minute-long video chronicles the seven-time Grammy winner's rise from a working-class Montreal family to becoming a world-renowned piano virtuoso.It touches on his encounters with greatness, such as being dubbed “the man with four hands,” and acknowledges the racism he faced at jazz gigs in the 1940s.Peterson died of kidney failure in 2007 at the age of 82.Both the English and French versions of the Heritage Minute feature end narration by Black Canadian pianists. Oliver Jones appears in the English version while Gregory Charles handles the French.The Heritage Minute is written by Brynn Byrne and directed by Aaron Yeger, known as co-writer and producer of the acclaimed 2015 film "Sleeping Giant."Historica Canada also produced a companion video exploring the history of Little Burgundy, a Black working-class community in Montreal and the jazz culture within it. The separate clip is narrated by Peterson’s daughter Celine Peterson, who was consulted about her father's Heritage Minute from its inception.Peterson says her father received many honours throughout his career, but she believes he would be especially proud of seeing his story in a Heritage Minute.“I think this is one of the ones that would really overwhelm him," she said.“People all over the world are familiar with the Heritage Minute, and it’s such a monumental form of recognition."Peterson, who serves as producer of the Kensington Market Jazz Festival in Toronto, says the debut of her father’s Heritage Minute during Black History Month is significant.“A huge part of my dad's story was racism, first at home and then around the world,” she said, pointing out that it was especially prominent early in his career as he travelled the southern United States.“He told the story when I was young about driving up on a KKK meeting when they were going from city to city. Hearing him talk about it is still haunting for me today. Maybe even a bit more so now than it was before.”Peterson's Heritage Minute is an especially cinematic one, which raises the question of whether his relatives have considered granting the rights for his story to a production company for a feature film."In the past, there have been some conversations but nothing that has necessarily been the right fit," his daughter said."Having his story told in that capacity would be natural, to a certain extent. It needs to happen, it's just a matter of when and by whom."--Watch the Oscar Peterson Heritage Minute: https://bit.ly/3bgpHHmThis report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 17, 2021. David Friend, The Canadian Press Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version said the narration by Black Canadian pianists was for the full Heritage Minute. In fact, the pianists contribute only the end narration in both English and French.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California Gov. Gavin Newsom and state legislative leaders have reached an agreement aimed at getting most public schoolchildren back in classrooms by the end of March. Under the deal announced Monday, school districts could get up to $6.6 billion if they reopen classrooms by March 31. To get the money, schools must return to in-person instruction at least through second grade. However, districts in counties with coronavirus case numbers low enough within a specific classification level must return to in-person instruction for all elementary school grades, plus one grade each in middle and high school. The proposal does not require staff and students to be vaccinated. Districts are not required to have agreements with teachers’ unions. Adam Beam, The Associated Press
In the past, telecommunications gear tended to come from a handful of major players such as Nokia, Ericsson and Huawei Technologies Ltd, who supplied everything from software to run the networks to gear for radio towers, along with custom chips inside the gear. But companies like Facebook, the social networking giant that maintains a business focused on improving internet infrastructure, have pushed for what are called open radio-access networks, which are made up of software and hardware designs that can be mixed and matched and are sometimes free to use. Facebook has focused on developing software for the open networks while partnering with hardware companies to come up with designs for hardware.
Shawinigan – Tous les superhéros accomplissent des miracles, c'est bien connu. Nino Mancuso, le grand patron du Shawicon et son équipe en ont réalisé un également dans les dernières semaines, alors qu'ils ont réussi l'exploit de mettre sur pieds la sixième édition de l'événement, dans tout le contexte que l'on connaît, tout en s'assurant au passage la présence de grandes pointures du milieu du divertissement d'ici et d'ailleurs. Nino Mancuso ne s'en cache pas : l'édition 2021 n'avait rien à voir avec les précédentes. «Ça a été bien, bien, bien différent des autres années!» sourit-il, d'emblée. «Jusqu'en décembre, on n'était pas sûr de ce qu'on ferait. Avec les décisions du gouvernement, c'était difficile de se brancher», exprime-t-il. Non seulement fallait-il avoir le feu vert, mais tout était à faire pour l'organisation. «D'habitude, on se prépare dès le mois de mai ou juin, on avait donc un gros retard en partant dans la préparation et c'est quand même beaucoup de travail», concède le principal intéressé. Cette édition «bien, bien, bien» différente aura tout de même ouvert de belles possibilités à M. Mancuso et son équipe. «Avec la pandémie, on a eu la chance d'avoir des gros noms qu'on n'aurait pas pu avoir sinon. Qu'on pense à Bonnie Wright qui a joué dans Harry Potter ou à la gang de ''Dans une galaxie près de chez vous'' que j'essayais d'avoir depuis la première édition mais dont les acteurs ne pouvaient jamais tous en même temps parce qu'ils étaient sur un tournage, au théâtre. On a profité de cette situation. Ça a été bénéfique.» Nino Mancuso est par ailleurs convaincu d'avoir fait bonne impression auprès des vedettes de cette année et de leurs agents, ce qui, estime-t-il, ne nuira pas dans un futur proche. «C'est quand même compliqué d'atteindre certaines vedettes. J'ai été chanceux, j'ai contacté de grandes compagnies qui m'ont répondu. Tout le monde est super content, les invités ont eu beaucoup de plaisir et les artistes ont adoré la réaction des fans qui ont participé et nous ont suivi en grand nombre. C'était assez fou», se réjouit-il. L'événement se fait une fierté d'avoir été l'un des premiers en son genre à être offert totalement gratuitement aux passionnés du genre. «On a gravi un échelon de plus en tenant quelque chose de numérique. On est bien fiers d'avoir pu l'offrir gratuitement aux gens.» À peine l'édition 2021 terminée, l'organisation planchera logiquement sur la septième présentation de l'événement à pareille date l'an prochain. «On va commencer tranquillement. On est toujours un peu dans l'attente. Chose certaine, il y a des trucs qui vont changer, on va essayer quelque chose de nouveau», a laissé entendre M. Mancuso. En 2020, le Shawicon avait amené plus de 266 000$ en retombées économiques pour la ville de Shawinigan. Marc-André Pelletier, Initiative de journalisme local, Le Nouvelliste