For these Maasai communities in Tanzania, solar stoves have transformed lives.
For these Maasai communities in Tanzania, solar stoves have transformed lives.
Canada's National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) now says the maximum interval between the first and second doses of all three COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in Canada should increase to four months in order to boost the number of Canadians being vaccinated. For the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, that means going from a three week interval to a full four months. "NACI recommends that in the context of limited COVID-19 vaccine supply, jurisdictions should maximize the number of individuals benefiting from the first dose of vaccine by extending the second dose of COVID-19 vaccine up to four months after the first," the committee said in a statement. Prior to this new recommendation, NACI had said that the maximum interval between the first and second shots of the Moderna vaccine should be four weeks, the interval for the Pfizer-BioNTech product should be three weeks and the interval for the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine should be 12 weeks. "While studies have not yet collected four months of data on vaccine effectiveness after the first dose, the first two months of real world effectiveness are showing sustained high levels of protection," NACI said. Since first doses of all three vaccines have been shown to dramatically increase immunity to the disease, or to significantly reduce the illness associated with contracting COVID-19, the committee said stretching the interval would help protect more Canadians sooner. NACI said that it reviewed evidence from two clinical trials that looked at how effective the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines were after a single dose. Those studies, NACI said, showed the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines started providing some level of protection 12 to 14 days after the first dose. By the time the second dose was administered — 19 to 42 days after the first — the first shot was shown to be 92 per cent effective. Population studies find lower protection Outside of clinical trials, NACI looked at the effectiveness of a single shot of these two vaccines in the populations of Quebec, British Columbia, Israel, the United Kingdom and the United States. NACI said that analysis showed the effectiveness of a single dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine was between 70 per cent and 80 per cent among health care workers, long-term care residents, elderly populations and the general public. "While this is somewhat lower than the efficacy demonstrated after one dose in clinical trials, it is important to note that vaccine effectiveness in a general population setting is typically lower than efficacy from the controlled setting of a clinical trial, and this is expected to be the case after series completion as well," NACI said. The committee said that published data from an AstraZeneca clinical trial indicated that delaying the second dose 12 weeks or more provided better protections against symptomatic disease compared to shorter intervals between doses. Earlier this week, before NACI changed its interval advice, B.C.'s Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced that the province would be extending the interval between doses of the Moderna, Pfizer and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines to 16 weeks. Henry said data from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control and countries around the world showed a "miraculous" protection level of at least 90 per cent from the first dose of the Moderna or the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. The head of Moderna's Canadian operations, Patricia Gauthier, said Monday that the company's own trials, and the conditions under which the vaccine was approved by Health Canada, are tied to a four-week interval. "That being said, we're in times of pandemic and we can understand that there are difficult decisions to be made," Gauthier said. "This then becomes a government decision. We stand by the product monograph approved by Health Canada, but governments ... can make their own decisions." Gauthier said she was not aware of any studies done or led by Moderna on what happens when the interval between the first and second doses is changed from four weeks to four months. 'We have to do it safely and watch carefully' Dr. David Naylor, who has been named to a federal task force charged with planning a national campaign to see how far the virus has spread, said the data have been "very encouraging." "The evidence is there for the concept of further delay," Naylor told CBC News Network's Power & Politics today. "We [had] trial data from earlier showing that going out from 90 days, a single dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine is effective. So things are triangulating." He said health officials need to pay close attention to the data coming out of other countries to determine if the protection provided by the first dose remains strong four months after it was administered. "We do it because we can cover more people with a single dose of the vaccine, spread the protection, prevent more severe disease and prevent fatalities, and the evidence is clear that that's what you can do if you spread those doses out widely. But we have to do it safely and watch carefully," Naylor told host Vassy Kapelos. Watch: The evidence is there for the 'concept of further delay' of second doses: Dr. Naylor: Storage and transport recommendations also changed Health Canada also announced today that after reviewing a submission from Pfizer-BioNTech, it would authorize changes to the way the vaccine is handled in Canada. The new rules allow the vaccine to be stored and transported in a standard freezer with a temperature of between -25 C and -15 C for up to two weeks, instead of the previous requirement that it be stored in ultra-cold conditions of -80 C to -60 C. Vials of the vaccine stored or transported at this higher temperature for no longer than two weeks remain stable and safe and can then be returned to ultra-cold freezers once, said the department.
Un convoi composé d'un autobus et d'une vingtaine de voitures s'est rendu, le 3 mars, à l'Hôpital de la Cité-de-la-Santé de Laval pour manifester son appui envers le personnel de la santé. «Ça fait maintenant un an qu'ils sont au travail à combattre cette pandémie, mentionne Sonia Ethier, présidente de la Centrale des syndicats du Québec (CSQ) qui a organisé l'événement. Nous voulions saluer leur travail et leur rappeler à quel point ils sont importants.» L'événement était organisé conjointement avec la Fédération de la Santé du Québec (FSQ-CSQ) et la Fédération du personnel de soutien scolaire (FPSS-CSQ). «Les employés des services de garde d'urgence ont aussi fait un travail remarquable, ajoute Mme Ethier. Ils arrivent tôt et partent tard du travail, tout en ayant une responsabilité importante. Ils travaillent sans relâche au détriment de leur santé et au risque de ramener le virus à la maison.» Les membres présents sur place n'ont d'ailleurs pas manqué l'occasion de faire du bruit à plusieurs reprises pour se faire entendre par leurs collègues qui travaillent à l'intérieur des installations de la Cité-de-la-Santé. La CSQ a aussi profité de cette occasion pour rappeler que les négociations des nouvelles conventions collectives n'avançaient pas. Les organisations syndicales souhaitent d'ailleurs que le gouvernement provincial améliore leurs conditions de travail. «Après un an et demi de négociations, il n’y a toujours aucun article de signé, affirme Claire Montour, présidente de la FSQ-CSQ. Nous avons rejeté à l’unanimité une proposition globale. Nous n’avons pas fait ça par caprice, mais bien parce que nous voulons obtenir de meilleures conditions de travail, une vraie reconnaissance du travail d’infirmière, d'infirmière auxiliaire et d'inhalothérapeute.» Mme Ethier précise quant à elle que le regroupement syndical avait réajusté ses demandes au printemps dernier pour prendre en compte le contexte économique auquel la province doit faire face en raison de la pandémie. Cela n'a toutefois pas mené vers un débouché dans les négociations. «On est ici pour demander du respect pour notre personnel, conclut-elle. On veut un ratio personnel-patients, des équipes stables et la fin du temps supplémentaire obligatoire. On veut arrêter de se promener dans tous les sens et mettre fin aux agences de placement. Nicholas Pereira, Initiative de journalisme local, Courrier Laval
The chief of the Miscouche fire department says he welcomes news that firefighters will be among those next in line for COVID-19 vaccinations on P.E.I. The province announced on Tuesday that police, firefighters and other first responders will be offered the vaccine in early April. However, Chief Jason Woodbury said he wishes they could have had it sooner. "I believe that we should have been part of the Phase 1," he said. Woodbury said firefighters respond to a number of emergencies, including motor vehicle accidents or entering homes where people could be in self-isolation because of COVID-19, and having the vaccination would make them feel safer. "Over the course of the year, our essential workers, particularly fire and police, continue to respond to the normal calls that they have done prior to the pandemic. So, you know, we were during the lockdowns, we were in close contact with many Islanders as we didn't really have a choice that we couldn't respond." Woodbury said it's difficult for firefighters to practise physical distancing when they are trying to save lives. Firefighters have continued to respond to calls throughout the pandemic, including entering homes where people could be in self-isolation, says Miscouche Chief Jason Woodbury.(Miscouche Fire Department/Facebook) "I use the example of the Le Chez-Nous fire. Not one of our members were vaccinated and we were dealing directly with rescues in a building with vulnerable people." Last month, a member of the St. John's fire department tested positive for COVID-19, which has prompted the department to send 16 other employees home to self-isolate. That's in addition to 20 firefighters who were already in isolation for other possible exposure unrelated to the workplace. "That very well could happen here," Woodbury said. "And 36 members in isolation in Miscouche would close our department. And we can't have that." More from CBC P.E.I.
JUNEAU, Alaska — A state vaccine task force on Wednesday vastly expanded eligibility for people to receive COVID-19 vaccinations in Alaska, adding those 55 to 64 and people 16 and older who meet certain criteria. That criteria includes being considered an essential worker, living in a multigenerational household, being at or at possible high risk for severe illness from COVID-19 or living in communities lacking in water and sewer systems, the state health department said in a release. Gov. Mike Dunleavy called expanding eligibility significant in efforts to protect Alaska residents and to help restore the state's economy. State health officials previously emphasized vaccinating those 65 and older. Individuals who have previously been eligible remain so. More than 100,000 first doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are expected for the state and Indian Health Service allocations this month, the department said. Also, 8,900 doses of the one-shot Johnson and Johnson Janssen vaccine are expected to arrive within the next two weeks, the department said. The number of vaccines do not include military allocations or those for programs involving pharmacies and federally qualified health centres. The state's chief medical officer, Dr. Anne Zink, said the vaccine supply is not yet sufficient to make it widely available to everyone who wants it. She said it is being offered to groups “who have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19, who are at risk for severe illness or death or who work in essential jobs." She added: "Some Alaskans may be more vulnerable to this disease than others due to their unique health or life circumstances. Offering vaccine is one step we can take now to help address these inequities.” The Associated Press
There were two deaths related to COVID-19 reported in the province on Wednesday. Both deaths were in the 80 plus age group and were located in Regina and Saskatoon. The number of deaths related to COVID-19 in the province is now 389. The North Central zone, which includes Prince Albert, reported six new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday. This was among 121 new cases reported in Saskatchewan. North Central 2, which is Prince Albert, has 19 active cases. North Central 1, which includes communities such as Christopher Lake, Candle Lake and Meath Park, has 30 active cases and North Central 3 has 15 active cases. There are currently 153 people in hospital overall in the province. Of the 133 reported as receiving in patient care there are 14 in North Central. Of the 20 people reported as being in intensive care there is one in North Central. The current seven-day average 154, or 12.5 cases per 100,000 population. The high was 312 reported on Jan. 12. Of the 29,059reported COVID-19 cases in Saskatchewan, 1,431 are considered active. The recovered number now sits at 27,239after 180 more recoveries were reported. The total number of cases since the beginning of the pandemic is 29,059 of those 7,437 cases are from the North area (3,024 North West, 3,259 North Central and 1,154 North East). There were 1,358doses of COVID-19 vaccine administered yesterday in Saskatchewan bringing the total number of vaccines administered in the province to 81,597. There were 232 doses administered in the North Central zone yesterday. The other zones where vaccines were administered were in the North West, Far North Central, Central East, Far North Central, Far North East, Saskatoon and Regina. According to the province as of March 2, 50 per cent of Phase 1 priority healthcare workers received a first dose. This percentage includes healthcare workers from long term care and personal care home facilities. Pfizer shipments for the week of March 1 have arrived in Regina (3,510) and Saskatoon (3,510). North Battleford (2,340) and Prince Albert (4,680) shipments are expected by end of day March 3. There were 2,588 COVID-19 tests processed in Saskatchewan on Feb. 28. As of today there have been 582,829 COVID-19 tests performed in Saskatchewan. Michael Oleksyn, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince Albert Daily Herald
OTTAWA — Former military ombudsman Gary Walbourne told a parliamentary committee Wednesday that he informed Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan of allegations of misconduct against Gen. Jonathan Vance during a “hostile” closed-door meeting three years ago. Walbourne’s remarks appear to contradict Sajjan’s own testimony to the same committee Feb. 19, when he said he was as surprised as anyone when Global News first reported Vance’s alleged misconduct in early February. At that time, Sajjan repeatedly refused to confirm media reports that Walbourne raised allegations against Vance when the minister and ombudsman met in March 2018. Sajjan cited confidentiality and also said any allegations brought to him were taken seriously and referred to the appropriate authorities. Walbourne, whose testimony is protected by parliamentary privilege, used his opening statement to the House of Commons' defence committee to publicly confirm the conversation for the first time. “Yes, I did meet with Minister Sajjan on March 1, 2018,” he said. “Yes, I did directly tell him about an allegation of inappropriate sexual behaviour made against the chief of defence.” Global News has reported that Vance allegedly had an ongoing relationship with a woman he significantly outranked. He is also accused of having made a sexual comment to a second, much younger, soldier in 2012, before he became commander of the Armed Forces. Vance, who turned over command of the military in January after more than five years in the job, has not responded to requests for comment by The Canadian Press and the allegations against him have not been independently verified. Global says Vance, who as defence chief oversaw the military’s efforts to root sexual misconduct from the ranks, has denied any wrongdoing. Military police are now investigating the allegations against Vance. They have also launched an investigation of Vance’s successor as defence chief, Admiral Art McDonald, who temporarily stepped aside last week in response to unspecified allegations of misconduct. Walbourne did not spell out the specifics of the allegation that he presented to Sajjan, and confirmed earlier reports that no formal complaint was filed. However, he said he came to possess “irrefutable, concrete evidence” about Vance, which is what led him to raise the matter with the minister. Walbourne told the committee Sajjan refused to look at the evidence and later cut off all contact until the former ombudsman’s resignation on Oct. 31, 2018. Walbourne also said he asked Sajjan to keep the matter in confidence until they could figure out how to handle the allegation, but that the minister instead told the Privy Council Office, which asked the ombudsman for information about the complainant. Walbourne, who initially declined an invitation to appear before the committee before being formally summoned to testify, said he refused to provide that information because the complainant had not given permission to do so. The former ombudsman, who has repeatedly decried a lack of independence for the office, went on to draw a link between his meeting with Sajjan three years ago and the Department of National Defence cutting off his financial and staffing authorities. The ombudsman’s office was being investigated at that time following a whistleblower’s complaint. Walbourne was adamant the complaint had no merit, and instead alleged that it was used as an excuse to put pressure on him and his team. Asked if there was any attempt by the government to cover up for Vance, Walbourne said: “I don’t know if it was an attempt at a coverup, but I know it was a full-court press to get rid of me.” This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 3, 2021. Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press
Ikea's new plant-based meatballs are different from the existing veggie balls.
After Mateo Perusse-Shortte, experienced racism while playing his sport, he and his mom decided to plan a hockey diversity group in Quebec.
ÉMILIE PELLETIER Initiative de journalisme local — Le Droit La santé publique de l’Ontario rapporte de moins en moins de cas de coronavirus depuis près d’une semaine. Le plus récent bilan de la santé publique fait état, mercredi, de 958 cas de COVID-19 enregistrés la veille. C’est la deuxième journée de suite que la province rapporte moins de 1000 infections quotidiennes. L’Ontario a enregistré jusqu’à présent 552 cas du variant de la COVID-19 provenant du Royaume-Uni, 27 de l’Afrique du Sud et trois du Brésil. En tout, 303 763 infections à la COVID-19 ont été répertoriées dans la province. Mardi, 52 613 tests de dépistage ont été effectués à travers l’Ontario, où plus de 11 millions de tests ont été effectués jusqu’à présent. Décès Au cours de la journée de mardi, la COVID-19 a emporté 17 Ontariens, portant le bilan à 7014 décès causés par ce virus depuis le début de la pandémie. Mardi, 668 personnes étaient hospitalisées pour soigner des symptômes de la COVID-19. Parmi ces patients, 274 étaient aux soins intensifs avec des symptômes plus graves, dont 188 sous respirateur. FSLD En foyers de soins de longue durée (FSLD), trois résidents et neuf employés ont reçu un diagnostic de COVID-19, mardi. La province ne rapporte aucun décès causé par le coronavirus dans ces établissements au cours des dernières 24 heures. En FSLD, 3745 résidents et 11 employés ont perdu la vie en raison du virus. Mardi, un nombre record de 27 398 Ontariens ont roulé leur manche pour recevoir une dose du vaccin contre la COVID-19. Jusqu’à maintenant, 266 710 personnes ont reçu leurs deux doses du vaccin contre la COVID-19 en province. En date de mardi à 20h30, un total de 754 419 doses du vaccin y avaient été administrées. Émilie Pelletier, journaliste, Initiative de journalisme local, Le Droit
OTTAWA — WE Charity co-founders Craig and Marc Kielburger are declining requests to testify before two House of Commons committees. In a statement, the charity notes that New Democrat MP Charlie Angus has requested that the RCMP and the Canada Revenue Agency investigate WE's operations. The charity says it would welcome and would co-operate with such investigations but it shouldn't be subject to an investigation by a partisan parliamentary committee at the same time. Two Commons committees had invited the Kielburger brothers to testify. Angus requested the RCMP and CRA investigations last week after a former donor, Reed Cowan, alleged that the plaque on a school he had funded in Kenya had been replaced with a plaque in the name of another donor — which WE said was an unfortunate mistake but which Angus said was proof of a "pattern of duplicitous relations with donors." Cowan made the allegations during testimony to the Commons ethics committee, which is continuing to scrutinize a now-cancelled federal contract to have WE manage a student services grant program despite the charity's close ties to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his family. This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 3, 2021. The Canadian Press
Toronto's top doctor is asking the province to lift a stay-at-home order and move the city to the strictest "grey" category of Ontario's pandemic restrictions system next week. The stay-at-home order that was imposed in January, with other measures that include the closure of non-essential retail, is set to expire Monday. Dr. Eileen De Villa, Toronto's medical officer of health, said Wednesday that lifting the order is reasonable but precautions still must be taken. "While there are evident reasons for a change in status, there remain reasons or risks that underscore how moving back into grey status is and will be a delicate balance," she said.Moving to the grey category, which allows retailers to open at 25 per cent capacity, is better than placing the city in the second-strictest red category, which allows indoor restaurant dining and personal care services, she said.Toronto Mayor John Tory said he believes moving to the grey category is the right approach."The cautious transition is the right way to go, all things considered," he said.Tory said he hopes the approach will help ensure the city will not have to undergo another shutdown. De Villa also issued a new order for workplaces, requiring businesses to ensure mask use at all times during an outbreak, should the city be moved to the grey category.The order also requires businesses to keep a record of everyone entering the workplace during an outbreak.Tory said the city has reached out to the Ministry of Labour to help support the move with increased workplace inspections over the coming days.Meanwhile, the top doctor of neighbouring Peel Region, which is also under a stay-at-home order, recommended his area move to the grey-lockdown zone as well. The move would preserve the progress made in the fight against the virus, said Dr. Lawrence Loh.Toronto reported 290 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, while Peel Region reported 164.This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 3, 2021. This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship. Denise Paglinawan, The Canadian Press
Earlier this week the Grey Bruce Health Unit (GBHU) moved into the green zone of the province’s reopening framework. At the same time, Collingwood’s restrictions were heightened to the grey-lockdown zone. The vast difference in restrictions between the two neighbouring communities has raised some questions about the logic behind the shift. “Changing the colour zones is not related to the locality of one town to another or the discrepancy between the red and the green and one area,” said Dr. Ian Arra, medical officer of health for GBHU. Arra explained that moving a region between the varying colour-coded zones is a provincial decision based on data points related to epidemiology, such as case count, per cent positivity, hospital and ICU capacity. “The Chief MOH will ask each MOH about the situation on the ground – where we see the region going. So, we have some input but the decision is absolutely provincial,” Arra said. Arra added the data set the province looks at to make its decision is essentially from three weeks prior to the shift. “So right now, if you go back two weeks, then the week before those two weeks, that's the set of data that is used,” he said. Arra added that he cannot comment on the specifics taking place in Simcoe County, as every health unit manages its own caseload and epidemiology data sets, but said in Grey-Bruce he has been confident with the decisions that are being made on a provincial level. “I don't know all the details that go there that led to the decision, but I know first-hand from dealing with provincial officials on a weekly basis or sometimes daily basis, I know that they're doing really a fine job. I can't comment on their decisions, but I can comment from my experience that they're doing a great job,” Arra said. However, Collingwood’s town council may beg to differ. At a meeting held last night the Collingwood council passed a motion that calls on the province to change the town's lock down designation. Collingwood Mayor Brian Saunderson said the stark difference between restrictions in the two neighbouring municipalities is “unconscionable.” “We’ve got two halves of a large economic engine that are now at opposite ends of the spectrum,” said the mayor. The Town of the Blue Mountains Mayor, Alar Soever said while he sympathizes with the situation Collingwood is in, he would prefer to keep politics out of the conversation when it comes to COVID-19 as he believes politicians should not make or influence decisions about public health. “I don't think what zone you're in should be a political decision. There are criteria that are based on case counts and where the transmission is happening. I would leave any and all of these decisions to the health professionals,” Soever said. Jennifer Golletz, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, CollingwoodToday.ca
OTTAWA — Justin Trudeau signalled Wednesday that Canada will stand up for an Ottawa sociology professor facing trial in France as human-rights advocates renewed calls for the Liberal government to intervene. The prime minister's words left Hassan Diab's supporters wishing Trudeau had been more forceful in pledging assistance. In late January, France ordered Diab to stand trial for a decades-old synagogue bombing, a move his lawyer called the latest misstep in a long odyssey of injustice. The Canadian government has been communicating with officials in France about the case and will continue to do so, Trudeau said during a news briefing Wednesday. "It has been a priority for us to make sure that we're standing up for our citizens all around the world, with countries that are challenging, but also with our allies," he said. "And those conversations will continue." Canadians would rightly expect their prime minister and government to stand up for a falsely accused citizen, said Donald Bayne, Diab's Ottawa lawyer. "But what does that ambiguous phrase mean?" Born in Lebanon, Diab became a Canadian citizen in 1993, working in Ottawa as a university teacher. The RCMP arrested him in November 2008 in response to a request by France. French authorities suspected Diab was involved in the 1980 bombing of a Paris synagogue that killed four people and injured dozens of others, an accusation he has consistently denied. After lengthy proceedings that went all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada, Diab was extradited to France, where he spent three years behind bars, including time in solitary confinement. In January 2018, French judges dismissed the allegations against him for lack of evidence and ordered his immediate release. Trudeau said later that year that what Diab went through "never should have happened." Diab's supporters have long argued he was in Beirut — not Paris — when the attack took place and that his fingerprints, palm prints, physical description and age did not match those of the suspect identified in 1980. Earlier this year, Bayne called the French move to have Diab stand trial "a travesty of justice," saying the latest analysis of handwriting evidence in the case makes the argument for pursuing his client even weaker. Diab, 67, is now back with his wife and young children in Ottawa as his lawyers in France appeal the latest decision. Alex Neve, former secretary-general of Amnesty International Canada, said in January it is "cruel and baffling" that French authorities continue to suspect Diab. Neve said the Canadian government must become involved at the highest political levels and not simply stand aside on the grounds that justice must be allowed to run its course. Justin Mohammed, a human rights law and policy campaigner with Amnesty Canada, said Wednesday the organization was encouraged by Trudeau's remarks but stressed that Canada must not co-operate with extradition requests that prolong Diab's ordeal. "It would be unconscionable to return him to face trial in France given the way his case has proceeded.” The Ottawa-based International Civil Liberties Monitoring Group has called on Trudeau and Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau to intervene with their French counterparts "to put a stop to this endless, Kafkaesque affair." The group, which represents dozens of civil-society voices, also wants the prime minister to commit to not extraditing Diab to France a second time. It also says Canada must reform its extradition laws to ensure no one else is forced to go through what Diab has endured. Tim McSorley the group's national co-ordinator, said Wednesday that while the prime minister's words were encouraging, Trudeau missed an opportunity to "clearly and publicly denounce the ongoing miscarriage of justice being faced by Hassan Diab." Early last year, Diab filed a lawsuit accusing the Canadian government of negligent investigation and malicious prosecution, saying federal officials violated his constitutional guarantees of freedom of movement, liberty and security of the person. This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 3, 2021. Jim Bronskill, The Canadian Press
MONTREAL — A well-known Quebec lawyer says she's mounting a legal challenge to provincial laws that don't grant common-law spouses the same rights as married couples in the event of a breakup. Anne-France Goldwater said today Quebec family law treats unmarried women as having less value than their married counterparts because they aren't entitled to the same alimony and property rights. Goldwater previously argued the issue all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada, which ruled in 2013 that Quebec's family law regime was constitutional and did not have to be changed, even though the court found there was discrimination against common-law couples. The case, known as "Eric and Lola," involved a woman and her former lover, a prominent Quebec businessman who contended he should not have to pay alimony because they were never legally married. Goldwater, who represented "Lola" in the case, has filed a new motion in Quebec Superior Court contesting the constitutionality of all the articles relating to family law in Quebec's Civil Code as well as the section of the provincial Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms that deals with rights and obligations of married and civil union spouses. The case she's arguing concerns a common-law couple called "Nathalie" and "Pierre," who were together 30 years and have four children. Goldwater told reporters today the years that have passed since the Supreme Court of Canada decision have reinforced the need for the law to change. She notes in her court submission that successive provincial governments have promised to reform the province's family law without ever doing so. "Quebec family law perceives non-married women and their children as having less value than married families and it's even worse for women who are common law without children," Goldwater said. "Why are Quebec women not equal under Quebec law?" she said. The 2013 Supreme Court decision noted that while there was discrimination toward common-law couples, it could be allowed under a section of the Canadian charter which allows for the limitation of rights in certain circumstances. Goldwater says she believes the current situation represents a form of "systemic sexism" that has been worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic, which she says has had a disproportionate impact on women. "Why do we have to have a pandemic to convince the leaders that women are economically disadvantaged?" she said. Under Quebec's current law, common-law spouses aren't entitled to alimony, division of the family patrimony or the right to occupy the home after the split. While any children stemming from the relationship have a right to support, the fact that the parent doesn't get alimony or a share of the wealth will result in a lower standard of living for the children, Goldwater says. She argues this creates "two sets of rules" for children: one for those whose parents married, and another for children whose parents were common-law spouses. Like others before it, Premier Francois Legault's government has promised to reform the province's family law, which has not been overhauled since 1980. Goldwater says the change could be made with the "stroke of the pen," namely by adding de facto spouses to the definition of couple and family, as was done for same-sex spouses when they were granted the same rights and benefits as heterosexual married couples in Quebec. This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 3, 2021. Pierre Saint-Arnaud, The Canadian Press
Ahuntsic-Cartierville - La vaccination contre la COVID-19 semble prendre son envol sans trop de turbulences, malgré quelques petits problèmes dans les premiers jours de la campagne, notamment au site de vaccination des Galeries Normandie. En raison d’un problème informatique, entre 200 et 300 places excédentaires ont été ouvertes pour des rendez-vous cette fin de semaine au site de vaccination des Galeries Normandie. Le Centre intégré universitaire de santé et de services sociaux (CIUSSS) du Nord-de-l’Île-de-Montréal a donc dû contacter les personnes qui s’étaient inscrites à ces rendez-vous afin de les déplacer. Cette opération a nécessité le blocage de la prise de rendez-vous au site des Galeries Normandie pendant quelques heures mardi. Une lectrice du JDV avait contacté le JDV en constatant qu’on ne lui offrait par la possibilité de se faire vacciner à cet endroit. Le CIUSSS explique avoir pris le temps de joindre tous les usagers pour lesquels il fallait déplacer le rendez-vous avant de rouvrir les inscriptions aux Galeries Normandie. La résidante qui avait contacté le JDV a confirmé, par la suite, qu’elle avait finalement pu prendre rendez-vous pour sa vaccination aux Galeries Normandie. Des scènes de cohue avaient aussi été rapportées dans les premières heures de la campagne. On avait notamment vu des files importantes se former devant le centre de vaccination la semaine dernière.. L’approvisionnement en doses devrait s’accélérer dans les prochaines semaines, alors que le Canada vient d’approuver un troisième vaccin, celui d’Astra Zeneca. D’ici la mi-mars, le vaccin sera d’ailleurs également offert en pharmacie a annoncé le gouvernement du Québec. Si vous faites partie des groupes prioritaires déjà appelés, et que vous désirez prendre rendez-vous EN LIGNE pour vous faire vacciner, cliquez ici. Si vous faites partie des groupes prioritaires déjà appelés, et que vous désirez prendre rendez-vous PAR TÉLÉPHONE pour vous faire vacciner, cliquez ici. Simon Van Vliet, Initiative de journalisme local, Journal des voisins
The province is committing up to $2 million to expand the BC Food Hub Network to Vancouver Island. The network is designed bolster food security, while helping food and beverage producers grow their business by providing shared-use processing facilities, equipment, expertise and other resources. The funding announced March 2 will be used for three new food hubs in Victoria, Cowichan Valley and Bowser. “B.C. food hubs create new opportunities for small- and medium-sized businesses and strengthen food security so British Columbians can rely on locally grown and processed food now and for generations to come,” Lana Popham, minister of agriculture, food and fisheries said. “Our BC Food Hub Network is a wonderful example of innovation at a local level, creating jobs and supporting farming, skills training and community building in the regions they operate.” Each of the new hubs will meet the individual needs of the local business and agricultural community. The new facilities in Cowichan Valley and Victoria will cater to farmers and processors wanting to create value-added products, while the Bowser hub will focus on seafood processing at Vancouver Island University’s Deep Bay Marine Field Station. The station will use its research labs and experimental commercial kitchen facilities to link together the culinary, business, distribution and research expertise. “We hope that the lasting benefit of the centre will be a track record of continuous innovation, technological and process development, answered research questions and a greatly expanded seafood sector that contributes to the food security of British Columbians and the general economy in BC,” Carl Butterworth, manager of the field station said. The government has earmarked $5.6 million through the Province’s StrongerBC economic plan for the expansion of the BC Food Hub Network. Three food hubs are already operating in Vancouver, Surrey and Port Alberni, with additional hubs in Quesnel and Salmon Arm opening later this year. Quinn Bender, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Prince Rupert Northern View
COMMERCE CITY, Colo. — The Colorado Rapids signed 16-year-old forward Darren Yapi to a five-year contract, the youngest player to sign a pro deal in the club's history. The team announced the deal with the home-grown player Wednesday. It includes a club option for an addition season. The 6-foot-1, 175-pound Yapi spent last season training with the Rapids first team along with the Colorado Springs Switchbacks, the club's affiliate in the second tier USL Championship. He signed a deal with the Switchbacks on July 31, leading to his pro debut on Aug. 1 at 15 years old. Yapi ended up earning Rapids Academy player of the year honours. “He possesses all the necessary qualities to reach the very top of the game and we’re excited to see Darren’s continued growth at the club,” Colorado general manager said Pádraig Smith in a statement. From the Denver area, Yapi joined the Rapids Academy during the 2016-17 season in the under-12 age group. He becomes the 14th Rapids Academy player to sign a Homegrown contract with Colorado. Yapi made three appearances for the U.S. under-17 youth national team during the UEFA development tournament in February last year. ___ More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports The Associated Press
STOCKHOLM — A man armed with an axe attacked and injured eight people in a southern Sweden town Wednesday before being shot and arrested, police said. Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said a possible terrorist motive was being investigated. “In the light of what has emerged so far in the police investigation, prosecutors have initiated a preliminary investigation into terrorist crimes,” he said. Shortly after his statement, investigators at a police press conference said they had started a preliminary investigation into attempted murder with details “that make us investigate any terrorist motives.” "But at the moment I cannot go into details,” regional police chief Malena Grann said. Police said the man in his 20s attacked people in the small town of Vetlanda, about 190 kilometres (118 miles) southeast of Goteborg, Sweden’s second largest city. His motive was not immediately known. The man was shot by police, who said the condition of those attacked and of the perpetrator was not immediately known. Officials did not provide details on the identity of the suspect, who was taken to hospital. Local police chief Jonas Lindell said “it seems that the injuries are not life-threatening” but could not give further details. The events took place in downtown Vetlanda with police saying they got calls just after 1400 GMT about a man assaulting people with an axe. Police also said that there are five crime scenes in this town of roughly 13,000. Lofven condemned “this terrible act," and added that Sweden’s domestic security agency SAPO was also working on the case. ”They continuously assess whether there are reasons to take security-enhancing measures and are prepared to do so if necessary,” he said in a statement. The Associated Press
The Acho Dene Koe First Nation (ADKFN) in Fort Liard has released its shortlist of nominees for its chief and council election set to take place on April 26. The First Nation posted the final list on Facebook on Tuesday night after nominations closed. There are a total of three eligible candidates running for the chief position, including current chief Eugene Hope. There are six council positions available, with 13 candidates running for a spot. Two candidates – previous ADKFN chief Floyd Bertrand, who was running for the position again, as well as Marlene Timbre, who was running for councillor – were both deemed ineligible according to the chief electoral officer's notice. The election has been postponed twice due to the pandemic. Federally introduced legislation allowed six-month extensions for First Nations elections to ensure leadership stability during the crisis. The election was further delayed by a cluster of COVID-19 cases that saw Fort Liard shut down all non-essential businesses in January, including ADKFN’s office. In order to provide time for those interested in running to pick up nomination forms, pay off outstanding dues, and ask questions at the First Nation office, the election date was duly changed from April 14 to April 26. Appeals regarding nominations must be made no later than March 9. Sarah Sibley, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Cabin Radio
The Town of Kensington is reminding snowmobilers in the area that sidewalks and roads are off-limits. The Kensington police chief and the mayor have both noticed snowmobiles that aren't keeping to their designated paths within the community, and they want to raise awareness about what's allowed. "I suspect that it could be just a matter of not being ... informed as well as they need to be and not recognizing that there's a safe corridor to travel off the streets in Kensington," said Mayor Rowan Caseley. The mayor believes having snowmobiles travelling on the sidewalks is dangerous. "You could be hitting somebody that's walking," he said. "It also packs down the snow on the sidewalks and makes it slippery for the other people." Kensington Mayor Rowan Caseley stands by the sign that tells snowmobilers where they can safely travel in the town. (Laura Meader/CBC) Casely stressed that the town and its businesses do appreciate having snowmobiles around. "We do have a corridor marked off between the train station and the downtown … where operators can travel and get to the downtown core to get their gas and coffee, etc.," he said. "Travelling on streets is certainly frowned upon — and I think it's actually probably illegal." New snowmobilers less familiar? The president of the Kensington Area Snowmobile Association said the snowmobilers who are cutting away from the designated corridor could be unaware of where they're allowed to go. "We're seeing a lot of new snowmobiling this year, a lot of people that haven't snowmobiled in years or haven't snowmobiled at all," said Russell Jollimore. "These people need to be made aware of the dos and don'ts." Jollimore said that as soon as the Kensington police chief spoke to him about the issue, he posted a reminder on the group's Facebook page. He noted that the town has set aside parking for machines near the gas station and the train station. "People can walk, you know, a few hundred feet to get to their restaurant or down for their coffee or or whatever. They don't need to be going up and down the side of the road. That's just not acceptable." More from CBC P.E.I.