Extra antioxidants may make little difference in lifespan

By Kathryn Doyle
Berries are a fantastic source of vitamins, antioxidants and fibre. One cup of blueberries contains only 84 calories, but eating one serving a week can help ward off cognitive decline as we age.

By Kathryn Doyle

People who get a lot of antioxidants in their diets, or who take them in supplement form, don’t live any longer than those who just eat well overall, according to a long term study of retirees in California.

Antioxidants, including vitamins A, C and E, are plentiful in vegetables and fruits and may help protect against cell or DNA damage – as a result, they’ve been touted for cancer prevention, heart disease prevention and warding off dementia.

“There is good scientific evidence that eating a diet with lots of vegetables and fruits is healthful and lowers risks of certain diseases,” said lead author Annlia Paganini-Hill of the Clinic for Aging Research and Education at the University of California, Irvine.

“However, it is unclear whether this is because of the antioxidants, something else in these foods, other foods in people's diet, or other lifestyle choices,” Paganini-Hill told Reuters Health by email.

Most double-blind randomized clinical trials - the gold standard of medical evidence - have found that antioxidant supplements do not prevent disease, she said.

The researchers used mailed surveys from the 1980’s in which almost 14,000 older residents of the Leisure World Laguna Hills retirement community detailed their intake of 56 foods or food groups rich in vitamins A and C as well as their vitamin supplement intake.

Two-thirds of the original group took vitamin supplements, most often vitamin C. The authors note, though, that the participants’ diets alone were generally more than adequate to meet minimum dietary requirements for vitamin intake.

With periodic check-ins and repeated surveys, the researchers followed the group for the next 32 years, during which time 13,104 residents died.

When Paganini-Hill’s team accounted for smoking, alcohol intake, caffeine consumption, exercise, body mass index, and histories of hypertension, angina, heart attack, stroke, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and cancer, there was no association between the amount of vitamins A or C in the diet or vitamin E supplements and the risk of death.

Vitamin users may have different lifestyles or underlying disease states that are related to their risk of death, the authors write.

“In the general population, health-promoting habits often cluster; e.g. those who take vitamin supplements often exercise, do not smoke, and are not obese,” Paganini-Hill said. “Thus, these factors may explain the observed association between longevity and vitamin supplements.”

On the other hand, the authors note, people with unhealthy habits might be more likely to take supplements. For instance, they found that men who were current smokers were about twice as likely to take in high or medium amounts of vitamin C compared to men who had never smoked. A similar pattern held for men's vitamin A intake and women's intake of both A and C.

Some large studies have found a connection between vitamin intake and risk of death, but most have not, the study team points out.

“We know quite a lot about how antioxidants act and what they, theoretically, can prevent,” said Sabine Rohrmann of the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine at the University of Zurich.

“One of the critical issues is that we don't know very much about how antioxidants act at different concentrations and how they act in humans who have, or who do not have, sufficient vitamin/antioxidant intake,” Rohrmann told Reuters Health by email.

Participants in the new study were largely white, educated and well-nourished.

“We know that the most important factors that influence mortality are smoking and excess body weight,” Rohrmann said. Many studies support the notion that vitamin supplements are usually not necessary because our nutrient intake via a healthy diet is usually sufficient, she said.

Antioxidants can have risks as well. According to the National Institutes of Health, high doses of beta-carotene may increase the risk of lung cancer in smokers, high doses of vitamin E may increase risks of prostate cancer and one type of stroke, and antioxidant supplements may also interact with some medicines.

Since they can interact with medicines, you should discuss your supplement intake with your doctor, Paganini-Hill said.

“Antioxidant supplements should not be used to replace a nutritionally adequate diet,” she added.

SOURCE: http://bit.ly/1Fgx3a8 American Journal of Epidemiology, online December 29, 2014.

  • Derailed Sask. CP train leaked more than 6 times the amount of oil than 2016 Husky pipeline spill
    News
    CBC

    Derailed Sask. CP train leaked more than 6 times the amount of oil than 2016 Husky pipeline spill

    The Canadian Pacific Railway train that derailed in rural Saskatchewan earlier this week leaked more than six times the amount of oil spilled during the 2016 Husky Energy pipeline disaster in the same province.  An estimated 1.5 million litres of crude leaked from the train, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) said Wednesday evening in its first major update on the derailment just after midnight on Monday.By comparison, 225,000 litres of oil leaked into the North Saskatchewan River from a Husky line near Maidstone in July 2016.The emergency brakes on the CP train in Monday's derailment were applied near Guernsey, about 100 kilometres southeast of Saskatoon, after one of the lead cars jumped the tracks while the train was going about 72 km/h — the speed limit on the line."This time it was on land versus into water. That makes the cleanup potentially a little bit easier and the containment easier but it is impacting fields," said Emily Eaton, an associate professor at the University of Regina's department of geography and environmental studies.Eaton's department recently compiled a map of Saskatchewan spills from 2000 to 2018. It pinpointed 14,958 spills during that period, including the release of 59 million litres of oil.Both the locomotive engineer and conductor on Monday's train were fit for duty and no one was injured, according to the TSB. The 516-398 train was carrying the oil to Oklahoma. It originated in Rosyth, Alta., east of the Hardisty terminal, a large heavy crude oil storage hub for Canada. Thirty-three tank cars jumped the tracks, leaking oil into the ground and atmosphere. and igniting a large fire that kept firefighters busy for two days. No waterways were affected, said the TSB. Its definition of "waterways" does not include the water table.Of the 33 derailed cars — which ended up in a large pile over some 500 metres — about 20 were breached and spilled out product that became engulfed in flames that burned for about 24 hours.About 19 of the oil tank cars lost their entire loads.A more precise measure of the amount of crude oil leaked will come as soil is removed from the site and the TSB's investigation continues.The leaks came despite the use of tanks (not owned by CP) meant to protect against such punctures and damage in the case of a crash or fire. "As serious as this incident is, rail tank cars are often the safest mode of transportation for moving critical commodities, particularly in light of the substantial hurdles involved in permitting and building new pipeline capacity across North America," said John Hebert, director of communications for the U.S. Railway Supply Institute (RSI). Herbert said the two types of cars CP was pulling — retrofitted TC-117 and jacketed CPC-1232 —  meet robust government standards the institute helped develop. "RSI and its Committee on Tank Cars have long advocated for improvements in the crash-worthiness of tank cars, especially those carrying petroleum crude oil and denatured alcohol [ethanol]," he said. "This incident demonstrates that even though it is impractical, if not impossible, to put into use a tank car that cannot be breached. Safety enhancements can significantly mitigate the impact of any event such as this."After the July 2013 Lac-Mégantic train crash that killed 47 people, the federal government unveiled the rail cars it hoped would become the new standard for transporting flammable liquids.Dubbed the TC-117 in Canada (DOT-117 in the U.S.), these cars have better thermal protection and are supposed to withstand puncture and other damage better than their predecessors, according to Transport Canada. On Thursday, Transport Canada confirmed retrofitted TC-117 cars like the ones on the CP train have the same protective features as brand new TC-117 cars: thermal protection, top fitting protection, new bottom outlet valves, full head shield protection, and a jacket.CP on hook for costsThe TSB has assigned six investigators to the case. "All 33 tank cars will be examined in order to evaluate tank car performance," the agency said in its Wednesday update. "Mechanical and track components recovered from the derailment will be examined and any components of interest will be sent to the TSB Engineering Laboratory in Ottawa for detailed analysis."The Saskatchewan government says CP's review of the derailment's environmental impacts is underway."Canadian Pacific Railway is responsible for all costs associated with the derailment, including the emergency response, environmental assessment and remediation efforts," a spokesperson for the government said Wednesday. "The company has contracted qualified environmental consultants and contractors to complete the work necessary to fully assess any environmental impacts to the site, and to develop and implement appropriate remediation plans."Transport Canada, which is monitoring the TSB's investigation, says it has taken steps in recent years to make railways safer."Only the most crash-resistant tank cars available are allowed to be used to transport crude oil in Canada," a spokesperson said Thursday.

  • Prague to ink partnership with Taipei after snubbing Beijing
    News
    The Canadian Press

    Prague to ink partnership with Taipei after snubbing Beijing

    PRAGUE, Czech Republic — The city of Prague, the Czech capital, approved Thursday a partnership agreement with the capital of Taiwan, Taipei.The move comes two months after Prague revoked a similar sister-city agreement with Beijing, an action that angered China.Prague took the action because Beijing rejected a Czech request to remove a clause from the agreement that states that Prague supports the one-China principle, which does not recognize Taiwan.In reaction to the Prague plan, China cancelled the tours of several Prague classical music ensembles and orchestras.The Czech government recognizes the one-China principle.Taiwan split from mainland China amid a civil war in 1949, but Beijing considers the self-ruled island part of its territory.The deal between Prague and Taipei is scheduled to be signed in January.Mayor Zdenek Hrib said the deal focuses on economic, trade and cultural co-operation but not on politics.The Associated Press

  • Yukon scales back in-school dental program
    News
    CBC

    Yukon scales back in-school dental program

    A national shortage of dental therapists means some Yukon students won't get dental care at school anymore.It affects Grade 8 students in Whitehorse, as well as all students at Whitehorse Elementary and Golden Horn schools. "The Yukon Children's Dental Program has been struggling for a number of years with the ability to provide services to all schools, to all children enrolled in the program," said Pat Living, director of communications of Yukon's Department of Health and Social Services.The school-based program provides diagnostic, preventative and restorative dental services to Yukon children. The services are provided by dental therapists and paid for by the territorial government.Living said the program has struggled since the 2011 closure of the National School of Dental Therapy in Prince Albert, Sask. The school trained dental therapists, and many graduate students would work in remote communities and schools across the North. Living said a lot of dental therapists continued on with their education and became certified dentists."There is no other educational institution that is graduating dental therapists. Nationally, across the country, they are in very short supply."Living said dental therapists do teeth cleanings, fluoride treatment, and even dental fillings. More serious procedures such as root canals or tooth extractions need to be done by a licensed dentist.Living said an interim measure for kids enrolled in the program will see the government pay for an appointment with a dentist at a private clinic. She said parents should not be concerned."It's just going to happen through a dentist, as opposed to a dental therapist. I mean, the one thing that will be different is that in the past we had our staff going into school. Now the parent will have to take the child to the dentist."Living said the government will still provide basic services at other schools, such as fluoride treatment or simple fillings. The Health Department encourages parents who have private dental insurance to use their benefits.

  • News
    Reuters

    Famine stalks millions in South Sudan after droughts, floods: U.N.

    Famine threatens the lives of up to 5.5 million people in South Sudan, where droughts and flooding have destroyed crops and livestock, compounding "intense political instability", the United Nations warned on Thursday. The U.N.'s World Food Programme (WFP) said it needed $270 million urgently to provide food to hungry South Sudanese in the first half of 2020 and avert mass starvation in the world's youngest country. "Every factor is in place for there to be famine in 2020 unless we take immediate action to expand our deliveries in areas affected by floods and other areas affected by food loss," Matthew Hollingworth, WFP country director, told Reuters.

  • PC brand Cranberry Goat's Milk Cheese recalled due to 'possible presence' of plastic
    News
    CBC

    PC brand Cranberry Goat's Milk Cheese recalled due to 'possible presence' of plastic

    The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has issued a recall for PC brand Cranberry Goat's Milk Cheese due to the "possible presence" of plastic inside the product.In a release on Wednesday evening, the CFIA said it is conducting a food safety investigation, which may lead to the recall of other products.The recall was triggered by the company, Loblaw Companies Ltd., the release said.The recall affects the 300 gram PC brand Cranberry Goat's Milk Cheese with a UPC code of 0 60383 01013 3 with best before dates of either March 19 or March 24, 2020.If other high-risk products are recalled, the CFIA will notify the public through updated Food Recall Warnings.The CFIA also said it is verifying that the product is removed from the marketplace.  So far, there have been no reported injuries associated with the consumption of this product, according to the release.More P.E.I. news

  • Open letter calls for Quebec government to step in on Royalmount project
    News
    CBC

    Open letter calls for Quebec government to step in on Royalmount project

    Fifteen organizations have sent an open letter to the Quebec government asking it to intervene in the Royalmount project.Construction on the $1.7 billion shopping and entertainment complex began weeks ago, but the authors of the letter say the Quebec government needs to "position itself on the issue" after consultations held by the developer, Carbonleo, did not go far enough.The mega mall complex, set to be completed in 2022, will be located at the intersection of Highways 15 and 40, and will include restaurants, hotels, offices, stores and an entertainment district.The signatories of the letter include the Quartier des spectacles Partnership, Greenpeace Canada, Équiterre, the Montreal regional environment council (CRE-Montréal), the Montreal Climate Coalition and the Montreal association of merchant's associations (ASDCM).The letter said they are concerned about mobility in an already high-traffic area and what the project will mean for Montreal's commercial and cultural landscape.Consultations were too little, too lateSeveral of the signatories were invited to consultations by Carbonleo, the developer of the Royalmount project, at the end of last summer. Citizen consultations were also held.But some felt that the consultations were a "diversion" by the developer, instead of an open dialogue."The first thing they told us was that it wasn't a consultation on the whole project, but just on the residential part," said Christian Savard, the director of Vivre en Ville. "The commercial district, the one that will affect the dynamic of Montreal, wasn't up for discussion.""In the end, the consultation, the openness of the developer wasn't real," Savard said.The Quartier des spectacles Partnership said it's concerned there isn't enough demand to justify a second entertainment district."Ticket sales have not really changed over the years. It's going well, but it's not increasing," said Monique Simard, the president of the board for the Quartier des spectacles Partnership. "Isn't there a risk of undressing Paul to dress Jacques?"She said that $200 million had recently been invested in the Quartier des spectacles by both the municipal and provincial governments.Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante opposed the project, after the city's urban-planning committee recommended suspending it until it can better meet the needs of the Montreal population."We believe that the consequences will be too harsh on the traffic, and on the businesses around, and on the whole of Montreal," Maeva Vilain, who sits on the committee, said at the time.But because the project is located in the autonomous Town of Mount-Royal, the city of Montreal cannot intervene.Developer fires backThe promoter for the project decried the "lies" and "misinformation" that were being spread about the project, citing the "enormous efforts" they've undertaken since the project was first announced."We have achieved exceptional social acceptability," said Claude Marcotte, the executive vice-president of Carbonleo. "There will always be people who will be against the project and we do not want to convince everyone. It's not our job to do it."Marcotte said tens of millions of dollars were spent on architects and engineers, leading to an "eco-innovative" project that now includes a pedestrian bridge to De la Savane metro, as well as green spaces and green rooftops."It's an exceptional, extraordinary project. Montreal will be proud of it. It will let Montreal shine on the international stage," Marcotte said.Chantal Rouleau, the minister responsible for Montreal and transport, said she would not comment on the project "for the time being."

  • Neighbours imagine a more walkable future for Lincoln Fields
    News
    CBC

    Neighbours imagine a more walkable future for Lincoln Fields

    Some people who live near the future Lincoln Fields light rail station — with its nearly 50-year-old former mall and ample surface parking — told the city Wednesday they want the area to become more walkable.A few dozen people huddled around poster boards of artist renderings at the Ron Kolbus Lakeside Centre and spoke about buildings and amenities they think should be built within a 10-minute walk."I'm glad that this is finally getting started," said Jonathan Morris, president of the Britannia Village Community Association. "We've known that there's lots of development pressure coming up in the area with LRT and so forth and so we wanted a cohesive plan, a vision for the area."Coincidentally,Ottawa's planning committee is looking at one such development for the area west of central Ottawa on Thursday.Mall owners RioCan wants to build a new 2,600-square metre Metro grocery store and Rexall pharmacy on the property and raze much of the already-empty mall.The company has plans to build residential buildings nearby as well.Morris supports the development, saying it's important to have the grocer in the area, but argues the some 800 parking spaces Riocan plans to leave untouched after the mall's demolition isn't what the area needs."We're a very car-centric area. For the most part, development happened in the 1950s … so we're hoping to pull back on that a bit and get to a more human-scale type of planning," he said.He wants to see the mall's leftover parking spaces be transformed in to a grassy park space — at least until Riocan begins future developments.Bay Coun. Theresa Kavanagh, who also attend Wednesday's meeting, said she would also like to see the parking lots become green space.More pressing than that though, she said, is the need for better pathways to and from the future Lincoln Fields station, which should open in 2025. "I'd like to see excellent connectivity. I think that's the top priority," she said.The current Lincoln Fields bus station will be rebuilt, with a platform under Carling Avenue, public washrooms, retail space and connections to between trains and buses that won't require passing through fare gates.West of this station, the Confederation Line will split to either Baseline station at Algonquin College or to Moodie Drive.Currently, the options for pedestrians to get to and from the Lincoln Fields bus station and navigate the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway are "totally inadequate," Kavanagh said.They include trails that are not always maintained in winter. "We have a major development on one side, and then there's this busy road and then there's transportation on the other [side]" said Kavanagh."We're trying to encourage transit and yet the road is in the way." Ian McCallum, director of the Woodpark Community Association, lives a short walk from Lincoln Fields station.He worries the future LRT station and light rail will cut off well-used walking paths to community gardens. While he understands the need to intensify development, he worries city amenities aren't keeping pace with the influx of people moving to the area. McCallum wants to see more libraries, parks, playgrounds and improvements to the roadways, particularly around Carling and Woodroofe avenues.The city expects to finish its recommendations for a development plan for Lincoln Fields Station in 2021.

  • Baloney Meter: Is Trudeau's mandate the 'weakest' in Canadian history?
    News
    The Canadian Press

    Baloney Meter: Is Trudeau's mandate the 'weakest' in Canadian history?

    OTTAWA — "The Liberal party lost votes and seats in every region of the country. It lost the popular vote and was reduced to a minority government with the weakest mandate in Canadian history." — Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer, Dec. 6, 2019.Since election night in October, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer has repeatedly asserted the Liberals have a minority government with "the weakest mandate in Canadian history." He used the claim most recently in response to the speech from the throne, in which the government rolls out its broad priorities for the coming Parliament. He has said it to push back at critics of his failure to win power himself; Scheer contends that since the Tories won the popular vote, and increased their seat count, the election was a success for the Conservatives.As Opposition leader, he has also used the claim to underscore how he sees his party's role in the 43rd Parliament — not just to oppose, but to prod the Liberals to adopt Conservative policies because they secured the backing of more voters. Scheer's spokesman, Simon Jefferies, said the claim the Liberals have the weakest mandate ever is based on the popular vote: the Liberals won 33.1 per cent to the Conservatives' 34.4 per cent."This is the lowest share of the vote a government has ever received," Jefferies said in an email.The claim about the Liberals' low popular vote is correct. Sir John A. Macdonald managed to form a majority government in 1867 with 34.8 per cent of the vote. All subsequent governments, majority and minority, were elected with more.The minority government with the slimmest share of the popular vote was Progressive Conservative Joe Clark's minority win in 1979, when his party drew 35.94 per cent of the votes cast.But in Canada's parliamentary system, the popular vote doesn't define a mandate, said Lydia Miljan, a professor in the political science department at the University of Windsor.Who gets to govern depends on the outcomes of 338 individual riding-level elections, and whom the elected MPs are prepared to support as prime minister. If winning the biggest share of the popular vote were what mattered, Scheer would be prime minister — with the weakest mandate in Canadian history.The Liberals have more seats and they have a mandate as long as they hold the confidence of the House of Commons, Miljan said."It's fine for political parties to try and score points when they redo the math, but the fact remains that in a parliamentary system, it is all about having support of the House of Commons."In Canada's multi-party electoral system, governments very often win power with less than 50 per cent of the popular vote.With their 33.1 per cent of the popular vote, Trudeau's Liberals won 157 seats in the Commons in October. That translates to 46.4 per cent of the 338 available seats.In 2008, the Conservatives formed a minority government with 37.6 per cent of the popular vote. That got them 143 seats, which was also 46.4 per cent of a smaller House of Commons.Another way to look at it could be how far the winning parties are from majority territory.In 2019, the Liberals finished 13 seats shy. In 2006, the year of Stephen Harper's first Conservative minority government, the party won 124 seats, putting them 31 seats away from a majority. That's the farthest a minority government has ever been from controlling the House of Commons.So, is Scheer being truthful when he says the Liberal government has the "weakest mandate" in Canadian history? By one standard, yes. But it's not the definitive standard because there isn't one.For that reason, the claim that Justin Trudeau's Liberals have the weakest mandate to govern in Canadian history earns a rating of "a little baloney" — the statement is mostly accurate but more information is required.This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 12, 2019.Stephanie Levitz, The Canadian Press

  • Former employees launch bullying accusations against Lethbridge principal
    News
    CBC

    Former employees launch bullying accusations against Lethbridge principal

    For three years, an employee of a Lethbridge, Alta., high school says working with her boss, principal Wayne Pallett, was like working for Jekyll and Hyde."Erratic. It's very aggressive and then it can change within minutes to be the exact opposite," she said.CBC News has granted the employee confidentiality over concerns her employment could be affected by her comments.She's one of four current or former staff members who shared similar experiences.Since CBC News started making calls about the complaints, it has learned the Lethbridge School Division is conducting a review of the school's environment. I have witnessed staff members of all levels crying or angry because of him and that's from teachers to support staff. \- Former Lethbridge high school employeeThis employee said she was warned of Pallett's behaviour when she was hired but she didn't start to become the target of it until a year later. She claimed she was yelled at on more than one occasion. "I've never had anybody look as if they're going to hit me because they look so angry, and red-faced and mouth contorted," she said. A former employee at the school described Pallett as a verbally abusive bully. "I have witnessed staff members of all levels crying or angry because of him and that's from teachers to support staff, to even saw him make a vice principal cry before," she said.CBC News has also agreed to keep this former employee's identity confidential to protect her children, who are currently enrolled at the school.She said she was never yelled at but said her boss would use a demeaning tone to belittle her.A physical tollIt happened so often, the former employee said, she would be reduced to tears. It eventually started to take a physical toll."Not sleeping, I didn't want to eat, like I couldn't, I had to force myself to eat. I lost almost 20 pounds and [was] having panic attacks," she said.She said she had never experienced those symptoms before working with the principal.The allegations all happened within the last five years.According to Lethbridge Collegiate Institute's website, the principal has been a high school administrator for 20 years. CBC News spoke to Pallett but he declined comment.CBC News requested an interview with the Lethbridge School Division. It declined to comment specifically on matters relating to personnel, and stated it is committed to following policy pertaining to complaints laid. That is something the employees say they tried to do. Employees say complaints went unheardThree out of four employees said they brought the matter up to the division's human resources department but said their complaints were not handled properly, and often, nothing would happen."I'm by far not the first that has been through this, gone through the proper channels to try to report it, to try to address it. And it goes nowhere," one employee told the CBC.All four attempted to seek help from their union, CUPE Local 2843. While CUPE would not confirm any specifics relating to the principal or school, it offered the following statement:"CUPE has been dealing with numerous complaints about the conduct of at least one principal at Lethbridge Public Schools."Union says it takes concerns seriously"We cannot discuss individual complaints, however we treat each complaint seriously and respect the views of our members. If we feel there is merit to a complaint we file a grievance as per the collective agreement. CUPE local officials offered assistance to a number of members who have refused union representation." None of the complainants were impressed with the way CUPE handled their concerns."We went to the union. We discussed things with the union. I've emailed the union. And we've always received a response like, well he's the boss. He makes the calls," one employee said.CUPE said in its statement, rude behaviour by a supervisor isn't harassment unless the behaviour is repeated and/or targeted to an individual or group of individuals. In these situations, CUPE said it can and frequently does intervene with employers to bring in a mediator to handle conflicts, and not all complainants warrant launching a grievance.CBC News also reached out to the Alberta Teachers Association, of which the principal is a member, to find out if any formal complaints have been filed. For privacy reasons, the ATA declined to confirm.The current and former staff members CBC spoke to say they are still dealing with the mental aftermath of what they experienced.One said it's scary to speak up but feels nobody else should have to suffer in a toxic work environment. "If I'm going down, I can know that I stood up for myself and I stood up for the people that have already been through this and hopefully something happens."

  • Officials update status of volcano and recovery efforts
    CBC

    Officials update status of volcano and recovery efforts

    Days after a volcanic eruption that killed 8 people, with another 8 presumed dead, New Zealand officials describe the recovery effort and its inherent danger.

  • News
    CBC

    Gobble Gobble: Your daily guide to CBC's Turkey Drive

    CBC Edmonton's annual Turkey Drive is here and we're inviting you to give back and have a gobble of a good time. For the 24th year in row, we're fundraising for the Edmonton Food Bank and bringing festive cheer to events across the city.With 19 events in 8 days,  we will be popping up all over Edmonton this year. Here's where and when you can find us: Thursday, Dec. 125:30 - 8:30 a.m. – Join Edmonton AM for some fresh morning joe and live radio. CBC Edmonton's Tara McCarthy and Min Dhariwal are live on location at The Colombian Coffee Bar & Roastery, 10340 134th St., an independent coffee shop in the Glenora neighbourhood.Try some delicious fair trade Colombian coffee and learn about the farm it came from!Meet Tara and Min and drop off your donation to support the Edmonton Food Bank.12 p.m. - 1 p.m.  – Get in the holiday spirit with some choral classics.Take a break from the office and enjoy a performance by the Holyrood School choir at CBC Edmonton's Centre Stage inside City Centre Mall. 5:30 p.m. - 7 p.m.  – Up-size your Christmas spirit. The Grinch Walk takes place on the opening night of one of Edmonton's favourite festive places, Candy Cane Lane!Join News at 6 host Nancy Carlson and Radio Active host Rod Kurtz for a stroll through the holiday lights. Then cozy up with a cup of hot chocolate to watch the classic 1966 cartoon, How the Grinch Stole Christmas at Cafe Blackbird.The walk begins at St. Andrew's United Church at 9915 148th St. at 5:30 p.m. We'll end up at Cafe Blackbird at 9640 142nd St.The campaign has just begun so there is still plenty of time to give. We're hoping to raise a grand total of $500,000 this holiday season but we need your help. Donate in person by joining us at any of the festive events between Dec. 12 and 19, or by dropping off a donation at CBC Edmonton. You can also donate anytime online.

  • Arson suspect arrested after 'intense' Spryfield fire forces tenants to flee
    News
    CBC

    Arson suspect arrested after 'intense' Spryfield fire forces tenants to flee

    Halifax police have arrested a man for arson in connection with a fire in Spryfield, N.S., that forced tenants to flee a four-storey apartment building on Thursday morning."Information provided to police and fire investigators has led them to believe the fire had been deliberately set," Const. John MacLeod said in a press release Thursday afternoon.Police arrested the 35-year-old man at 9:15 a.m. on Robie Street in Halifax. Matthew Landry, who lives on the first floor of the Spencer Avenue apartment, said he was woken up by the building's fire alarm."All the hallway was full of smoke and I saw flames shooting out buddy's door across the hall where the fire was," he said. "It scared the daylights out of me."Two residents climbed down a ladder to escape the building.Jordan Hobin lives next door to the apartment where the fire broke out. He said he also tried to put out the fire."We had the door open and me and another guy were trying to fight the fire with extinguishers but it was just too bad; we couldn't see and couldn't get to it," he said."We went around the back and tried to put it out with the extinguishers through the window, but it was just too intense."Dave Slaunwhite, the district chief for Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency, said the call came at 7:44 a.m. He said two people were taken out of the third floor and treated by EHS for minor injuries."When the first crews arrived we had heavy fire coming out of the first and second floor," he said. "The crews did a great job in knocking that fire down quickly."In an email, a city spokesperson said traffic on Spencer Avenue and Lewis Street was blocked to the public and advised that people avoid the area.MORE TOP STORIES

  • 'Difficult to feel optimistic': CBE trustees and administration mull uncertain future
    News
    CBC

    'Difficult to feel optimistic': CBE trustees and administration mull uncertain future

    Temporary financial relief at the Calgary Board of Education is being welcomed by administration and trustees alike but as they look toward the future of the CBE, no one knows how to plan. The uncertainty has both trustees and administration questioning the future of the board — and public education in general. At Tuesday's public board meeting, trustee Mike Bradshaw said that a year ago he would have said public education was "the jewel in the government of Alberta's crown."Now is a different story. It's months after the election — and a $32-million cut to the CBE's provincially allotted budget — and Bradshaw sees things differently. "My optimism for the future of education is waning," he said. "I hope I'm wrong. I really do."Bradshaw said he worries Alberta's internationally recognized student achievement can't be maintained if cuts continue."Which ultimately means the removal of supports for students in the classroom and a more challenging learning environment for everyone," he said. 'We need to overachieve'After dipping into maintenance dollars to make ends meet this year, the CBE's chief financial officer Brad Grundy said it's going to take a lot to end the school year debt free — which is required by law. "We need to overachieve in terms of savings so that we can get to where we want to by the end of the year," he said. Breaking down the finances beyond the $32-million revenue reduction, Grundy said there were other cost escalators that the board has had to address subsequent to the presentation of its spring budget. As an example, Grundy said they were advised of changes to the collective agreement with regard to certain employee benefits, which he anticipates will have another $3.5-million impact on the board.Further, Grundy said the CBE already had a carried pressure in the spring budget of $5 million. "I'm less comfortable that we'll be able to find the full $5 million over the course of the year, so I have noted that against reserves," he said.'Sense of unease'Bradshaw wasn't the only trustee to raise concerns on Tuesday over the board's uncertain future, either. Trina Hurdman took a moment to acknowledge the toll the past few months had taken on everyone involved — especially for the 317 teachers who didn't know where they would be come January until just days ago when the maintenance money was approved for staffing. "I know that they're breathing a sigh of relief right now," she said.But she also knows that everyone is now looking toward next year and what will happen then."I don't think that this temporary relief is dissipating this sense of unease that we all feel right now," she said. "There's just been a lot of uncertainty and that uncertainty continues. We don't know what a new funding framework will look like. All we know is that the government plans to maintain the overall budget in their fiscal year."On Monday, Hurdman took to Twitter to explain the board was shocked by the $32 million in cuts to their budget, because she said they had been repeatedly told by the UCP that the province was committed to funding enrolment growth."Oct. 9 — In the legislature, Finance Minister reiterates commitment to maintain and/or increase education funding and also states 'We're committed to fund enrolment growth,'" she tweeted.So, while the CBE's dealt with immediate staffing pressures the uncertainty around the funding framework, a looming provincially ordered financial audit and governance review means neither administration or trustees can give employees or parents any certainty about what next year at the CBE will look like. Catholic school district also feeling the pinchThey're not alone in that sentiment. The Calgary Catholic School District said they feel it, too. On Wednesday, trustees there gave the nod to the board's revised 2019-20 budget. It saw the approval of recommendations from administration to manage $11 million in reduced funding, and additional costs of approximately $6 million associated with growth in operations. "This shortfall is largely due to the elimination of select government grants occurring mid-year, which has been challenging," CCSD said in a release.And, while they said through cost saving measures the district did not have to look at decreasing current staffing levels in schools or administration, the shortfall will be covered through the use of savings, increased transportation fees and other reductions.But the board expressed concern with the reduced funding and depleted reserves."We can't possibly maintain all current levels of service given our current funding," said board chair Mary Martin. "We are also aware of the impending changes to our funding this spring and are keeping that in mind as we plan now and into the future."And, like Martin, the CBE's board chair said these difficult discussions are far from over."I would echo the concerns of some of my colleagues when we look ahead to what education funding is going to look like, the impacts the future budget is going to have on our system, and on our schools and ultimately on our students," she said, on the verge of tears."I know it's difficult to feel optimistic at times as we look ahead to that."

  • News
    The Canadian Press

    Fire at Bangladesh plastics factory kills 13, injures 21

    DHAKA, Bangladesh — A fire at a plastics factory near Bangladesh's capital has killed at least 13 people and injured 21 others, police said Thursday.The fire occurred Wednesday at the Prime Plastic Industries factory in Keraniganj, said Mohammaed Bacchu Mia, a police official stationed at Dhaka Medical College Hospital.He said one person died at the scene and 12 others succumbed to their injuries in the hospital on Thursday.Doctors at the hospital said some of the injured were in critical condition.The fire department was investigating the cause of the blaze.Nasrul Hamid, a lawmaker from the area, said the tin-shed factory had no approval from authorities to operate. Some of the workers told local media that an explosion of a gas cylinder may have caused the fire.Bangladesh has a tragic history of industrial disasters.Earlier this year, a fire in the oldest part of Dhaka, a 400-year-old area cramped with apartments, shops and warehouses, left at least 67 people dead. In another fire in March, at least 25 people died when a multistory commercial building was engulfed in flames.In 2012, a fire raced through a garment factory on the outskirts of Dhaka, killing at least 112 people trapped behind its locked gates.Another fire in Old Dhaka in a house illegally storing chemicals killed at least 123 people in 2010.The Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers' Association, a non-profit group, says at least 16,000 fires across Bangladesh in the last decade killed about 1,590 people, according to data compiled from the fire department and other government and media reports.The Associated Press

  • Mixed feelings on hotel proposal atop Atlantic Place parking garage
    News
    CBC

    Mixed feelings on hotel proposal atop Atlantic Place parking garage

    While there were mixed opinions on a proposed hotel for downtown St. John's at a public meeting Wednesday night, people seemed able to agree on one thing: it can't get uglier than it already is.Sonco Group has released its assessment and proposal for the four-storey, 108-room Park Hotel above the existing eight-storey Atlantic Place parking garage at the intersection of Clift's-Baird's Cove and Harbour Drive.The proposal would bring that building to level height with the attached Atlantic Place complex."Not all that happy about being shadowed even more by another tall building in the downtown," said Peg Norman, who owns Travel Bug and The Bee's Knees on Water Street.Talk of any tall building development in the downtown area is often met with contention from residents concerned about obstructing the harbour view and changing the cityscape.Norman said the company's feedback at Wednesday night's meeting didn't do much to allay her concerns."They're crunching the numbers and looking at how many rooms they need and what height they need to be able to make it a viable project, and I understand that. And I'm not anti-development," she said."Just, hotels are for visitors; they're not for people that live here, generally speaking, and I think that the Atlantic Place building itself and the parking garage were, in its incarnation, one of the biggest mistakes ever made in terms of development in the downtown."In Sonco's proposal, there is a section on Harbour Drive dedicated to retail space — something Norman was happy to see, but she said it's a "bit of a double-edged sword," since the proposal increases the height on the existing structure."I'm not a huge fan of that. And I think the proposal of putting a 1,400-square-foot retail space or whatever it's gonna be in that corner section, I think that's a start … because Harbour Drive right now is really just a driveway, it's just access to parking, which is unfortunate," Norman said."But I think if they are serious about that then they should look at increasing the retail space that's available on Harbour Drive."Downtown resident Daunt Lee is also concerned with continuous development in the downtown area."I feel, for many, many years, the views keep on getting compromised by other things getting built in front," Lee said."It's long been my view that we live in a bowl and there's a ridge right at the top of it — it always confounded me why nobody would ever look at this situation and be like, 'Oh, I'm gonna build something tall on the ridge instead of down in front of everybody else.'"As a longtime downtown resident, Lee has had plenty of interactions with tourists, but the response from a German cruise ship passenger asked what they thought of St. John's came as a surprise."I was expecting her to be like, 'Oh it's a wonderful city,' but she came back with, 'It's kind of lame. It looks like glass and concrete, looks like everywhere else,'" Lee said."And I was standing on Water Street at the time, which certainly looks very much like Water Street, but if you came in on a cruise ship and the first thing that you saw was the waterfront, yeah, OK. That made me second-guess it. I was like, 'Oh yeah, she's got a point.'"Lee said the developers behind the project seem to have the community's concerns in mind, but Lee thinks the Atlantic Place building is already an eyesore that no development can help."There guys aren't looking to upset the community. They're really looking to add to it, and I appreciate that," Lee said."But the fundamental thing is that they want to build extra floors onto a 45-year-old building and I think, quite frankly, it's a 45-year-old building which should probably just be allowed to meet its end of life."For Kerry Shears, the owner of Natural Boutique on Water Street, the development makes sense from a business perspective."They're not using any more height than Atlantic Place," he said."Now if they were developing up higher, then I could see a concern there, but for us it's more just trying to make sure they're gonna be a business partner."Shears, who lives in Gros Morne, said he would welcome new businesses near his St. John's shop, adding that every time he comes into town, things seem to be changing."Even if they're at 50 per cent occupancy rate, that's an extra 50 people, 50 rooms, so then you're talking an extra 100 people or more down on that end of Water Street — which helps every business that's down there."'Pleasantly surprised' with meetingAnthony Novac, the project lead for Sonco Group's Park Hotel development, said Wednesday's public meeting went well, and the discussion was productive."I actually was pleasantly surprised, to be perfectly honest," he said. "I think there was some reasonable questions as well as concerns and support, so I was quite happy with the meeting."Novac said there were some initial concerns and confusion about the height of the proposal, but the height on the addition to the parking garage would not surpass the neighbouring Atlantic Place."I mean, we're definitely building up. We think that that site has always been planned to have that amount of height on it," he said."We don't think we're doing any harm to the view planes at all. We think we're beautifying the landscape and creating an interesting and iconic property that's going to be excellent for the development of that area of the downtown."Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador

  • How you can help a newcomer to P.E.I. experience holiday traditions
    News
    CBC

    How you can help a newcomer to P.E.I. experience holiday traditions

    The P.E.I. Association for Newcomers to Canada is looking for Islanders to help create a new kind of holiday tradition this year.The organization is looking for volunteers for its Holiday Host program, which matches newcomer families with Canadian families to share the spirit of the season.The program, which has been running on the Island for years, is open to individuals, couples and families.  Valerie Fitzpatrick, the association's community connections program co-ordinator, said they are looking for anyone interested in hosting a newcomer family to share in their own holiday traditions.She said the association has been advertising the program with the hope of recruiting more local families."A lot of people do it year after year." Fitzpatrick said families enjoy a meal together, cook and engage in Christmas or other holiday traditions. "There are newcomer families that may live in Canada for quite a while before they're actually invited in to a Canadian home, so it's a really nice thing that happens. It's kind of this rite of passage."Fitzpatrick said on average the association matches 20 guest families with 20 host families."We have a lot of repeat customers, if you will, because they just love to do it every year," she said. Fitzpatrick said anyone interested in signing up for the program can call the P.E.I. Association for Newcomers to Canada.More P.E.I. news

  • This Chinese-Vietnamese restaurant in Richmond Hill serves up wok-fried crab
    News
    CBC

    This Chinese-Vietnamese restaurant in Richmond Hill serves up wok-fried crab

    With Chinese, Vietnamese and Thai dishes on the menu, Saigon Star's meals offer flavours from multiple cultures. "I really think we're the only restaurant doing what we do. Where else can you find a bowl of pho, along with a menu of curry crab?" said Thomas Ha, who now manages the restaurant with his father, Bill Ha.Saigon Star is located along one of the biggest corridors for East and South East Asian food in the Greater Toronto Area — Highway 7. One of the tastiest items on the menu is the fried spring roll. The shell is stuffed with taro, wild mushrooms and glass noodles, with the option of adding chicken, and arrives with a side of fish sauce. The restaurant also serves up a grilled pork neck dish, which is a marriage of Chinese, Vietnamese and Thai cooking. The meat is marinated in a soy, lemongrass and sesame oil mix before it's baked on low heat. It's then seared on high heat to crisp the fat before it's sliced. "My father came up with this dish after a visit to the butcher shop. He found that they had an excess amount of great quality pork neck. He started experimenting with it," Thomas Ha said. Bill Ha moved to Toronto in the late 80s, where he originally opened Saigon Star just north of Yonge and Bloor streets with a partner.In the early 90s, he saw a demographic shift in Toronto, with a large percentage of Chinese and Vietnamese immigrants moving to Richmond Hill, and a year later he moved his restaurant to Highway 7 near Bayview Avenue. "My dad built this legacy of Chinese-Vietnamese cuisine," Thomas Ha said. Saigon Star's menu is an example of how cuisine evolves with migration and neighbouring influences.The curry crab is Bill Ha's masterpiece — it's a uniquely Toronto dish inspired by the history of the Ha family.             "This is a dish that was made by accident," Thomas Ha said.When the restaurant first opened, the chicken curry dish tasted more like a Malaysian curry. One day, Bill Ha had a surplus of a house-made sauce, which he added to a fresh shipment of Dungeness crab that had arrived from B.C. and served it to his staff.The dish soon ended up on the menu and has become the most popular item. Over the years Bill Ha and his cooks have added a few variations of the wok-fried crab dishes. They're all delicious, but there's something that stands out about the signature curry crab. After the crab is cleaned, it's tossed in high-heat work with a secret sauce made from a house curry paste. It's not spicy, but there are distinct notes of herbs and spices. What I also love about this dish is the experience of eating it, which requires all participants to get their hands a little messy. And if you have a chance, ask for some roti canai (fried roti), which you can tear and use to sop up any leftover the sauce from the plate.

  • News
    The Canadian Press

    Former NFL player charged in 2013 slaying in Louisiana

    BATON ROUGE, La. — A one-time NFL player was charged with murder in what authorities described as a drug-related killing in Louisiana in 2013.Devin Holland, 31, was arrested Wednesday in the shooting death of Timothy Pena during an apparent drug deal six years ago, Baton Rogue police said.The Advocate reported that Holland played football for McNeese State University and Tulane University before signing a contract with Tampa Bay, where he played in four games in 2011. He also signed with the Washington Redskins before being released in 2013.Booking records showed DNA evidence linked Holland to a truck where Pena was found fatally wounded. Antoine Robinson, who was charged in the killing earlier this month, also was linked to the scene through DNA, records showed.Pena had a cellphone that included text messages that described a meeting for a suspected narcotics deal, according to booking documents. He died at a hospital after being found with a gunshot wound in the back of the head on Dec. 17, 2013.The Associated Press

  • News
    CBC

    Teen dead, 3 young people sent to hospital after Hillsborough crash

    A teen is dead after the vehicle he was driving went into the ditch in the Hillsborough area on Wednesday. Glen Northrup, fire chief of the Hillsborough Fire Department, said the crash happened around 9:30 p.m. on Albert Mines Road in the small village about 24 kilometres southeast of Moncton.The 17-year-old boy who was driving the vehicle died at the sceneTwo young women and one other young man were also inside the vehicle when it crashed. They were sent to hospital in Moncton.A 19-year-old woman and a 16-year-old boy have since been released from the hospital, according to a statement from the RCMP.A 16-year-old girl is still in the hospital with injuries that are not believed to be life-threatening.The fire chief said roads in the area were icy at the time of the crash, Police said an investigation into the accident is continuing. But the RCMP say speed and road conditions are believed to have been contributing factors.

  • He stole his car — not his heart, judge finds in luxury car case
    News
    CBC

    He stole his car — not his heart, judge finds in luxury car case

    When asked why Lawrence Ducharme would have sold his prized sports car to him for a fraction of its value, Aaron Wood argued that people who are in love "do crazy things."  But there's crazy, and then there's allegedly selling your $100,000 Nissan GT-R for less than a third of its value to a man your closest friends and family have never heard of.And that was just one of the many things that didn't add up in the strange case of the dead man's vehicle as Wood took the stand in B.C. Supreme Court to explain how he had come to register the car as his own.There was a mysterious break in days after Ducharme's death. The theft of a key fob. A police chase of a man who hopped in a vehicle that looked remarkably like one owned by Wood's common law spouse.And, of course, Wood's own criminal record.In deciding the case, Justice Alan Ross framed the puzzle as a logical balancing act."Who is the owner of a vehicle? In that respect, the only factual question is whether Mr. Lawrence Ducharme, who is now deceased, sold his vehicle to Mr. Wood," the judge asked."One party put forward a case of improbabilities. The other party put forward a case of probabilities. The balance favours the latter."A complicated messWood's improbable tale resulted not only in Ross deciding the Surrey man was not the rightful owner of the Nissan GT-R at the heart of the case, but that he had stolen it from Ducharme's residence two weeks after his death in January 2016.Although Ross delivered an oral ruling in September, the unusual decision was only posted to the court's website last week.Ducharme died from a stroke on Jan. 16, 2016. The break-in to his home occurred on Jan. 28 — and in the middle of the following night, neighbours heard someone drive off with the NissanWood has never been criminally charged with stealing the car, but according to the ruling, RCMP told him he was a suspect in the break-in and subsequent theft of the vehicle.A Surrey RCMP officer found the car without any plates when he was out on patrol almost a year later.The situation hit the courts in 2017 when Wood sued the Insurance Corporation of B.C. after showing up at the lot where the vehicle had ultimately landed with papers that he claimed proved the car was his.ICBC had already paid out a theft claim of nearly $110,000 to Ducharme's estate. And so all the parties ended up in court trying to untangle a complicated mess.Wood's version of eventsWood testified that he met the dead man at a marijuana dispensary and they developed an "intimate" relationship.He claimed Ducharme agreed to sell him the 2014 vehicle for $30,000 in the months before his death. But Wood claimed he couldn't register the vehicle because he had an outstanding debt with ICBC.When he learned that Ducharme had died, Wood claimed he went to the house and drove the car away.He claimed he sent the car off to be detailed and that his friend "never reported back to him about what happened to the vehicle."In March 2017, he went to an ICBC agent with a transfer form that purported to contain Ducharme's signature.But Ducharme's closest friends say he never mentioned Wood or any plans to part with a car he loved.And then came the cross-examination.A 'particularly effective' grillingThe judge called the grilling of Wood "particularly effective."It turned out he had been previously convicted of fraud, possession of stolen property, identity theft and uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm.Wood also confirmed that his common law spouse owned a red Honda CRV — the same vehicle Wood was driving when he was pulled over by RCMP around the time of theft from Ducharme's residence.A man was also seen jumping into a very similar vehicle after he was chased by a police officer who showed up to investigate in the minutes after the break-in."Mr. Wood denies that he broke into Mr. Ducharme's residence on January 28, 2016 or that he was involved in that break-in," Ross said.But the judge wasn't convinced.The clue of the extra 'l'Ross concluded that none of Wood's testimony could be taken at face value as truthful or accurate and said the documents he tendered into evidence were likely forgeries.The judge even noted his own interesting "factual tidbit" — pointing out that the word "until" was spelled with two 'l' in the transfer document through which Wood claimed Ducharme had signed the Nissan over to him.It was the same way Wood spelled "u-n-t-i-l-l" in the court documents he filled out to assert his claim."I find it extremely unlikely that both Mr. Ducharme and Mr. Wood would have misspelled that word in exactly the same manner," the judge said.The upshot of the ruling is that ICBC is the rightful owner of the car, which Ducharme's estate was found to have properly reported stolen.And both the insurer and the estate are entitled to recoup the costs of the trial.But not "u-n-t-i-l-l" they can get the money from Wood.

  • Almost 14,000 Canadians killed by opioids since 2016: new national study
    News
    The Canadian Press

    Almost 14,000 Canadians killed by opioids since 2016: new national study

    OTTAWA — New numbers released Wednesday show close to 14,000 Canadians have been killed by opioids over the last four years and more than 17,000 people have been hospitalized for opioid-related poisoning.The data is in a new report from a national advisory committee struck to study the epidemic of opioid overdoses in Canada.Canada's chief public-health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, and Saskatchewan's chief medical health officer, Dr. Saqib Shahab, issued a joint statement saying many of the deaths were caused by Canada's illegal drug supply being contaminated with toxic substances.The say fentanyl and other very potent synthetic opioids continue to be a major cause of hospitalizations and deaths.The data also shows thousands of Canadians continue to have non-fatal overdoses each year and hundreds of thousands more are affected by problematic substance use.In their statement, Tam and Shahab say the opioid overdose crisis is a complex problem that will take time to turn around."To have a significant and lasting impact, we need to continue working together on whole-of-society changes," they say. "This includes addressing the stigma that surrounds substance use, implementing further harm-reduction measures and reducing barriers to treatment. It also means continuing to work together to better understand and address the drivers of this crisis, such as mental illness, and social and economic factors that put Canadians at increased risk."Western Canada continues to be the most affected by the opioid crisis, but Ontario has also seen a rise in opioid-related deaths, according to the data.Also, 94 per cent of opioid deaths in the first six months of this year were accidental, the Public Health Agency of Canada says.This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 11, 2019.Teresa Wright, The Canadian PressNote to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version incorrectly attributed the new opioid statistics to Health Canada.

  • News
    The Canadian Press

    Bail decision on Monday for Montreal blogger who touted Polytechnique gunman

    MONTREAL — A decision on whether to grant bail to a Montreal blogger alleged to have glorified the gunman behind Montreal's 1989 Ecole polytechnique killings is expected Monday.Jean-Claude Rochefort made several rambling comments about being a political prisoner during a hearing today at the Montreal courthouse where he confirmed writing the posts in question.Rochefort had been detained since Dec. 5 — the eve of the 30th anniversary of the anti-feminist attack in which 14 women were killed.The 70-year-old faces charges of inciting hatred towards women after investigators found what was described as "disturbing" writing published under the pseudonym Rick Flashman on a "hateful, anti-feminist blog."Defence lawyer Marc-Olivier Carrier argued that Rochefort's previous brushes with the law didn't involve violence, and while his writings may be described as shocking, he doesn't pose a threat.The Crown opposed bail for Rochefort, citing a risk of recidivism given Rochefort's arrest on similar charges a decade ago and the need to maintain the public's confidence in the justice system.Quebec Court Judge Serge Delisle will rule on the matter Monday afternoon.This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 12, 2019.The Canadian Press

  • An Iconic Artifact From Meghan Markle’s Hollywood Days Is Now For Sale
    News
    HuffPost Canada

    An Iconic Artifact From Meghan Markle’s Hollywood Days Is Now For Sale

    Going once, going twice ... sold?

  • Geminid meteor shower peaks this weekend. Here's how to watch from anywhere.
    News
    The Weather Network

    Geminid meteor shower peaks this weekend. Here's how to watch from anywhere.

    A colourful 'rock comet' meteor shower is set to light up the night this weekend.

  • 16 things to do this weekend in Edmonton
    News
    CBC

    16 things to do this weekend in Edmonton

    Festive StuffWant to see the lights but don't want to drive all over the city? The ETS Holiday Lights Tour take you on a two-hour tour from Churchill Square, to the legislature, to Candy Cane Lane. The tours run Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings with the $5 ticket price going to Donate-A-Ride. The Edmonton Christmas Bird Count goes Sunday. The citizen-science project, which shares data with the National Audubon Society and Bird Studies Canada, started in 1955. Shumka's Nutcracker promises to 'delight' the senses with three shows on Saturday and Sunday at the Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium. CBC Edmonton personalities and local musical talent come together at St. Augustine's Parkland Anglican Church in Spruce Grove for a night of music, festive desserts and a dramatic reading of Dicken's A Christmas Carol on Saturday.Candy Cane Lane opens tonight and runs until New Years Day. Stroll or take a horse-drawn ride down 148th Street between 92 and 100th avenues. Bring a donation for the food bank.  For more community events you can catch Our Edmonton this week Sunday at 1:30 p.m. and Monday at 11 a.m. on CBC TV. MusicJoin Luke, Leia, Han, and the rest of the rebels at The Music Of Star Wars on Friday and Saturday night and Sunday afternoon at the Winspear Centre, conducted by Robert Bernhardt. Slippery When Wet, The Ultimate Bon Jovi Tribute, slips into the River Cree Resort and Casino Friday night. Local trio The Jivin' Belles takes the stage at the Yardbird Suite for a nostalgic Christmas on Friday.Théâtre Picarts and JH Picard School presents a musical adaptation of the classic film White Christmas at the Westbury Theatre at the Arts Barns until Tuesday.Rodgers and Hammerstein's classic Oklahoma! comes to Festival Place from Dec. 14-30. Arts and CultureHey Ladies! offer 'The real black Friday!' at Theatre Network live at the Roxy at 8 p.m. Friday complete with a yuletide match game, the return of Bad Santa and music by the Edmonton band Real Sickies.Sara does a Solo is a multi-disciplinary work described as breathtaking and whimsical by veteran writer and dancer Sara Porter at Mile Zero Dance Friday and Saturday.The Best Little Newfoundland Christmas Pageant...Ever! fills Backstage Theatre at the Arts Barns with laughter as Whizgiggling Productions present a twist on the classic nativity story in performances Dec. 12 to 22. Cinderella: A Christmas Pantomime is the classic tale with a twist as Cinderella is helped by her servant dog Buttons. It runs at the theatre at Fort Edmonton Park Dec. 12 to 29.Class of '63 A Rockin' Reunion packing in enthusiastic audiences at the Mayfield Dinner Theatre. You have until Jan. 26 to catch it.From rock to country, the Jubilations Dinner Theatre offers a rootin', tootin' down home musical parody called Country Star that will have your toes tapping.