One Night in Miami and Soul screenwriter, Kemp Powers, applauds Colin Kaepernick and LeBron James for carrying civil rights torch, in Yahoo Entertainment's latest episode of Game Changers.
One Night in Miami and Soul screenwriter, Kemp Powers, applauds Colin Kaepernick and LeBron James for carrying civil rights torch, in Yahoo Entertainment's latest episode of Game Changers.
(CBC - image credit) A large fire Wednesday morning in Ingonish, N.S., destroyed a barn and the livestock inside, which were the heart of a young family's business and livelihood. The barn belonged to the Groovy Goat Farm & Soap Company, located along the Cabot Trail in northern Cape Breton. "It just was such a shock and it all just happened so fast," said Shannon Costelo, who owns the Groovy Goat with her husband, Ryan Costelo. Costelo said a neighbour knocked on their door to point out smoke coming from the barn behind their house. "We went out right away and there was smoke at that point ... It didn't seem like a lot so my husband ran out with the fire extinguisher. But he went in and the whole barn was already filled with smoke," Costelo said. She said her husband kicked the doors open, hoping the goats inside, which included some new kids, would run out, but none did. They were unable to rescue any of the animals that were in the barn. Engulfed in flames within minutes "It just went so fast and, you know, the whole barn was filled with hay in the hay loft, so ... it didn't take long," she said. It was only about, like, five or 10 minutes from the time we saw the smoke that it was totally engulfed in flames." The wind was blowing in the direction of the family home, Costelo said, so while her husband called for fire crews, she packed up their three children and got them off the property for fear the barn fire would spread. Costelo said her family built the barn about five years ago as their business was just taking off. They operate a petting farm and a shop where they sell their goat milk, soaps and other bath products. In addition to their goats, the family also owns some cows, which were out in a pasture at the time of the fire. 'It was pretty traumatic' Costelo said her husband is also the chief of the Ingonish volunteer fire department, which is not far from their home, so he got the truck from the station and started trying to extinguish the blaze with the help of neighbours before additional fire crews arrived. "It was very hard for him," Costelo said. "It was pretty traumatic." Crews from Ingonish and Neils Harbour responded to the blaze around 8:30 a.m. Victoria County deputy warden Larry Dauphinee was among the firefighters responding to the call. "It's a big loss to the community," Dauphinee said. "It's definitely a young couple with a nice business on the go ... I'm sure the community will pull together and assist as much as they can." Dauphinee said high winds made the fire difficult to control, as crews worked to save nearby buildings. A GoFundMe account has been launched to raise money for the Costelo family. Costelo said she and her husband haven't talked a lot yet about what comes next, but she's hoping to keep the business going. "We'll never, never get the animals back and we'll have to live with what happened," she said. "But we do hopefully plan to rebuild the barn and kind of pick ourselves up and keep going, if we can." MORE TOP STORIES
Le concept de microforêt se répand petit à petit pour répondre à la bétonisation de nos existences. Au risque de détourner ce qui définit une forêt.
(Chris Ensing/CBC - image credit) The union representing workers at Caesars Windsor says it has negotiated additional pension incentives for members looking to retire. In a Facebook post on Tuesday, Unifor Local 444 said it has secured enhancements to the existing voluntary retirement incentive, "allowing many of our members an opportunity to retire earlier than they otherwise may have." There are three options based on years of service, and people who are 60 and older are eligible. The maximum incentive is $3,000. The union says casual employees are not included. The casino was shut down for much of 2020 due to the pandemic, putting about 2,000 people out of work. It reopened in the fall but was closed when Windsor switched to the red zone in November, and the shutdown is still in effect. Under the current rules, casinos are allowed to reopen but at a capacity of 10 patrons. Caesars Windsor could not immediately be reached for comment. More from CBC Windsor:
(Steve Bruce/CBC - image credit) The Prince Edward Island government plans to set up collaborative structures for patient care that it refers to as "medical homes" and "medical neighbourhoods." In his state of the province address on Monday, Premier Dennis King said three Island communities will get the new structure this year, staffed by multi-disciplinary teams with electronic medical records a critical part of the initiative. The "home" is the family doctor, who will co-ordinate each patient's care, and the "neighbourhood" is an integrated team of other health-care providers, which could include nurse practitioners, diabetes nurse educators, and dietitians among others. The person's overall medical care will be documented and communicated through an electronic health record. Dr. Kristy Newson, president of the P.E.I. College of Family Physicians, said the family physician will be like the quarterback for your care, but an entire team of people could be working to improve your health. "The evolution of family medicine and the way we are training early career family physicians is in this team-based model, and the key is the communication between all the providers," she told Island Morning host Mitch Cormier on Wednesday. "So you have your own network of allied health-care professionals that you interact with on a daily basis. And they always have communication back to the physician as the centre of the medical home." National blueprint The P.E.I. college's site links to a College of Family Physicians of Canada document that calls the concept a blueprint "for the future of family practice in Canada." The document explains that the medical neighbourhood "includes the many realms of health care outside of primary care, such as referrals to other medical specialists, health care providers, hospitals, long-term care, and home care structures, or to broader social and community supports such as community-based mental health and addictions supports and other social services." The document goes on: "Similar networks have been formed across Canada and around the world with the goals of providing improvements to patient outcomes, safety, and experience; lower costs through reduced duplication of services; improved delivery of preventive services; and more evidence-based patient care." More from CBC P.E.I.
Les personnes de 85 ans et plus, en Montérégie, sont invitées à réserver leur place dès jeudi matin, mais la vaccination de la population générale ne débutera que le 11 mars dans la région. Le premier ministre François Legault a annoncé cette semaine que la région de Montréal serait priorisée. Si la Rive-Sud est souvent incluse dans les décisions impliquant le Grand Montréal, il semble que ce ne soit pas le cas cette fois-ci. Par voie de communiqué, la direction régionale de la santé publique de la Montérégie (DSP) lance un appel à toutes les personnes de la région nées en 1936 ou avant. Les gens qui répondent à ce critère et qui souhaitent être vaccinés contre la COVID-19 doivent prendre rendez-vous en ligne à l’adresse: Québec.ca/vaccinCOVID. La prise de rendez-vous débute jeudi matin à 8 h 00. Les gens qui n’ont pas accès à internet ou qui préfèrent prendre rendez-vous par téléphone peuvent appeler au 1-877-644-4545. Une personne accompagnatrice peut aussi être vaccinée si elle se rend au site de vaccination avec quelqu’un de 85 ans et plus ayant obtenu un rendez-vous. Cette personne accompagnatrice doit cependant être âgée de 70 ans ou plus et côtoyer la personne aidée au moins trois jours par semaine. Afin de limiter les déplacements et bien desservir tous les secteurs de la Montérégie, on a prévu des sites de vaccination à Acton Vale, Boucherville, Candiac, Brossard, Châteauguay, Lacolle, Longueuil, Saint-Césaire, Saint-Hyacinthe, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Salaberry-de-Valleyfield et Sorel-Tracy. Deux autres lieux vont s’ajouter à compter du 15 mars à Mont-Saint-Hilaire et Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville. Toujours selon le communiqué, la directrice régionale de la santé publique, Dre Julie Loslier, reconnaît que l’arrivée du vaccin dans la population générale s’accompagne d’un vent d’espoir dans la lutte contre la pandémie. Elle insiste toutefois sur l’importance de demeurer vigilant et de continuer de respecter les règles de prévention. Il est important de rappeler que le corps a besoin de plusieurs semaines avant de réagir au vaccin et de bâtir son arsenal de défense contre le virus. «Le virus circule encore, des variants plus contagieux ont été identifiés au Québec. Nous devons donc continuer à suivre les mesures de santé publique pour continuer à protéger les personnes les plus vulnérables», peut-on lire dans une citation attribuée à Dre Loslier. Par ailleurs, d’après les données recueillies par l’équipe de la chercheuse de l’Université de Sherbrooke, Dre Mélissa Généreux, 73,9 % des Québécois veulent être vaccinés contre la COVID-19. En Montérégie, le taux est légèrement plus élevé à 76,8 %. Ces résultats ont été obtenus à la suite d’une enquête menée auprès de 10 513 répondants entre le 5 et le 16 février 2021. Ugo Giguère, Initiative de journalisme local, La Presse Canadienne
(Jeremy Cohn/CBC - image credit) A quarantine screening officer employed by a private security company hired and trained by Canada's federal health agency has been charged after allegedly demanding a cash fine from an Ontario resident and then sexually assaulting her when she refused to pay. Halton Regional Police say the accused, a 27-year-old Hamilton man whose full name is Hemant, went to the Oakville home on Feb. 18 to carry out a quarantine compliance check, telling the resident she was in violation of a quarantine order. Under Canada's Quarantine Act, designated screening officers regularly visit travellers' quarantine locations to ensure they are complying with the mandatory 14-day quarantine requirements. The officers are not police and cannot issue a ticket or conduct an arrest, nor can they demand payment of any kind. Police allege the accused demanded the resident pay a fine in cash. "When the victim declined to pay, she was sexually assaulted by the accused," said a police news release issued Wednesday. Police also said he worked for one of four private security firms hired to help enforce isolation orders. The force said it will not identify the name of the security company where the man was an employee, but say he has been suspended. The accused, who now faces charges of sexual assault and extortion, has been released from custody. He is set to appear in court in Milton, Ont. on March 23. The investigation was prompted by a complaint from the alleged victim, said police spokesperson Const. Steve Elms, who had no other details. The Public Health Agency of Canada did not immediately respond to a request to comment. All people entering Canada are required to isolate for 14 days. Designated screening officers visit quarantine locations to confirm the person is where they said they would be in quarantine when they arrived in the country. Failure to comply can result in fines. Screening officers, contracted by the Public Health Agency of Canada, are not police officers and have no authority to issue a ticket or arrest anyone. As a result, police said, screening officers should never be demanding payment of any kind during a quarantine-compliance check. Police said other people might have been victimized and urged anyone who might have had a similar experience to contact their local police. Issues have previously arisen with quarantine guards. Last year, private security contractors at a quarantine hotel in Melbourne, Australia, were accused of sleeping with guests, the Herald Sun reported.
Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller says allocating COVID-19 vaccine doses for Indigenous people in urban areas through the provinces is faster and more effective than delivery directed from Ottawa. He says he will be working with provinces and territories to ensure they prioritize Indigenous people in their immunization efforts, even as the National Association of Friendship Centres and other advocates call for more direct federal involvement.
Approximately 20 people participated in a Wembley virtual town hall with the Beaverlodge RCMP last Tuesday. Issues discussed included the use of snowmobiles in town, the prospect of starting a local Citizens on Patrol (COPs) group and recent break-ins, said Ash Browne, Beaverlodge RCMP detachment commander. “The town hall gives me that raw information I need to build our annual performance plan,” Browne said. “We have these consultations to focus our policing efforts in certain areas.” Browne said the RCMP held the town hall via Zoom from Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum with assistance from the Town of Wembley. He was joined by another member of the Beaverlodge Detachment and one from the Crime Reduction Unit as well as Wembley council, he said. Browne acknowledged the participation level was lower than ideal and said this might be due to town residents’ conflicting commitments or the limits of having a digital forum. While participation was low, he said this allowed him to address each person individually. Browne said he received a question from a resident as to whether the community should launch a COPs group. “I was in support of that,” Browne said. “Hythe just went through this process … (and) community members can be part of the solution, because police cannot be everywhere all the time.” Browne said if the town starts a group the RCMP will provide a liaison. Another issue that arose was the use of snowmobiles in town. Wembley has a bylaw stating snowmobilers and ATV users should only leave a residence through the most direct route to fields, he noted. Browne said this issue is best addressed through patrols, and officers can be aware it is something to look out for. Patrols are mainly preventative, he added. Recent break-ins at the public works building and firehall earlier this month were also top of mind. The Beaverlodge RCMP shared images online of the suspect from another attempted break-in outside a business while the investigation is ongoing. Browne said he believes the incidents are all related. Browne previously hosted town halls for Beaverlodge and Horse Lake last year and an in-person event in Hythe in June 2019. He said his performance plan for the detachment should be ready for April 1. Brad Quarin, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Town & Country News
One would be hard pressed to find a more energetic person than Meisam Sharifi, an Iranian immigrant to Toronto, Canada. He loves talking about politics and his vision for how the world ought to change. “There is something fundamentally wrong with society. You see, all the people who do the jobs don’t get the benefits. The people who get all the money are the ones who do nothing,” Sharifi told NCM. Meisam Sharifi is not his real name. He is active with the group Fightback, a Marxist-Leninist political action group based in Toronto. He still has family in Iran and he is worried the country’s secret police, the Basij, might harass them for adopting a belief system contrary to the fundamentalist government of the country. He asked NCM to use Meisam Sharifi to protect his identity. Sharifi is a proud Canadian citizen now, but there is one aspect of Canadian society and policy that dissatisfies him: Canada takes a hands-off approach to getting immigrants politically involved. “I personally didn’t have any education about [Canada’s system of government]. I kind of learned that because I am active with Fightback,” Sharifi told NCM. Sharifi came to Canada in 2009 at the age of 19, which means he did not attend any civics classes in Canada. “I’m going through my memories; I think there was something in the immigration test. I think there was a little bit about how the system works. But it was very very basic,” he said. Last December, the Migration Integration Policy Index (MIPEX) placed Canada in the top five for immigration policy out of 52 countries for the year 2019. This was cause for celebration for a number of news outlets, especially in the wake of the Trudeau government’s sweeping changes to immigration policy. However, while Canada’s overall policy scored well, the country did very poorly in political participation. Canada can be proud of the fact that immigrants have great access to education, are broadly protected from discrimination and can unify with their families. But when it comes to immigrants participating in Canada’s democracy, the international metric says the country leaves a lot to be desired. MIPEX’s creators did not return NCM’s requests for interviews. MIPEX measures policy along eight metrics and assigns scores between zero and 100 for each metric by country. They examine current policies against the highest standards set by scholars. Canada’s score in areas where it did well is by no means perfect, but it is still head and shoulders better than the rest. The country did the best in terms of anti-discrimination, with a perfect score across all subcategories. But in the subcategories of political participation, it’s a failing grade. Right to vote: 0. Strength of national consultative body: 0. Active information policy: 50. Canada did get top scores in political party inclusion and funding of national immigrant bodies, but that only bumped the overall average score to 50. By contrast, Finland scored higher than Canada overall as well as in the category of political participation. There was not a single score of zero in their report card and the lowest score they received was a 75, in the right to vote category. Foreigners do have the right to vote in municipal elections in the country and even to run in them as candidates, as long as they have lived in the municipality in question for at least two years. Newcomers from the European Union (EU) can also vote in the EU parliamentary elections. National elections are reserved for Finnish citizens only. Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden, just to name a few, have policies similar to those of Finland. The report also praises Finland’s National Advisory Board on Ethnic Relations. The board works in conjunction with the country’s Ministry of Justice and is a network of experts that provide consultation on policy concerning minority groups. Finns describe it as “national forum for dialogue. The Board brings together migration experts from national, regional and local levels ranging from public officials to civil society representatives.” “Political mobilization, getting people to vote, was never really part of the multicultural idea in the first place [in Canada],” University of Toronto professor of sociology Jeffrey Reitz told NCM. Reitz did provide one caveat regarding studies such as MIPEX. He believes indexes like MIPEX are a “useful overview of policies” but “it has to be recognized that they are not validated in the same way that, for example, a vaccine is validated. [MIPEX] is in the category of best practices.” Mansoor Tanweer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, New Canadian Media
Ontario's booking system for COVID-19 vaccines, both online and via telephone, will launch on March 15.
“Kill Shot: A Shadow Industry, a Deadly Disease,” by Jason Dearen (Avery) Lower back pain. Spinal stenosis. Cataracts. All those conditions are treated with drugs manufactured by compounding pharmacies. And those drugs can blind or kill you, due in large part to an almost total absence of regulatory oversight. In his terrific but unnerving new book, “Kill Shot,” Associated Press investigative reporter Jason Dearen explores the shadow industry of compounding pharmacies and various unsuccessful efforts to rein it in. The story centres on the New England Compounding Center, which in 2012 produced mould-infested batches of an injectable steroid that killed more than 100 people and sickened nearly 800 others across 20 states. Eventually, the lab in Framingham, Massachusetts, half an hour west of Boston, was shut down, and 13 people, including co-owner Barry Cadden and supervising pharmacist Glenn Chin, were convicted of federal crimes. But as Dearen makes clear in his gripping, tautly written narrative, the problems posed by pharmacy compounding — which accounts for at least 10% of the country’s drug supply — are far from over. Relying on transcripts, interviews, FDA inspection reports and other sources, he reconstructs this slow-moving tragedy in scenes of almost cinematic intensity. We meet the sympathetic victims, many of them elderly people living with chronic pain, who, after receiving the injections, died slow, horrible deaths from fungal meningitis and its complications. We also meet the callous lab owners, who set out to enrich themselves by cutting corners, hiring unqualified staff, running a filthy operation and relying on payoffs to drum up business. And while some NECC employees were eventually held accountable, they had a host of enablers. These included the lobbying group Alliance for Pharmacy Compounding; members of Congress, who accepted their campaign contributions and killed meaningful reform; and the U.S. Supreme Court, which in 2002 struck down a section of a law designed to give the FDA more oversight. Thankfully, there were good guys as well: mostly, the dedicated doctors and scientists in hospitals, state health labs and federal agencies, including the FDA and CDC, who tracked the mysterious outbreak of deadly infections in real time and limited its scope by alerting the public. “Kill Shot” is coming out in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has exposed the overall fragility of the U.S. health care system. By calling attention to just one facet of it, Dearen has performed a tremendous public service. He includes a handy checklist of questions to ask prescribers about compounded drugs, but his takeaway is inescapable. Consumers would do well to educate themselves about treatment options and press for tougher regulations. Their lives — and those of their loved ones — may depend on it. — Ann Levin worked for The Associated Press for 20 years, including as national news editor at AP headquarters in New York. Since 2009 she’s worked as a freelance writer and editor. Ann Levin, The Associated Press
Long-term plans for industrial development between Sexsmith and the County of Grande Prairie may change slightly due to public feedback. Sexsmith council voted to make some changes to the draft Intermunicipal Development Plan (IDP) during its meeting last week. The changes would shift planned development to the northeast of current town boundaries south to the area closer to Viterra, said mayor Kate Potter. “We were really appreciative of the residents who said, ‘These are some concerns we see,’ and I think those were addressed,” Potter said. Potter noted the IDP is a long-term plan for a period of perhaps 50 to 100 years, and no development is imminent. Eighteen people attended two sessions in November to review the draft IDP and several questioned why certain lands were designated for industrial growth, said Rachel Wueschner, Sexsmith’s chief administrative officer. The area east and northeast of town boundaries was designated for industrial development under the draft IDP. Attendees suggested development be shifted closer to the Emerson Trail due to existing infrastructure there, including a high-grade road. Potter said while the eastern area may not currently have a through road, land access may be established over a long-term period. Attendees further suggested the current plans may negatively impact the landscape and agricultural lifestyle east of town. Potter said the land isn’t being re-designated at this time. Council did support moving some planned development, from two quarter-sections on the northeast of town borders to the Viterra area, partly because the northern area contains wetlands, Potter said. In accordance with feedback, council also voted to recognize a link between range roads 61 and 63 as a priority road. Range Road 63 runs west of Sexsmith and is entirely in the county, and improvements could make it easier for large trucks to transfer from Range Road 61 (a truck route) to 63, she said. The designation of a priority road means the county and town will communicate with each other regarding future plans for road improvements, she said. Following council’s changes, Potter said the matter will go back to negotiations between the town and county. Brad Quarin, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Town & Country News
COVID vaccinations have begun at local lodges and all other seniors 75 and older can now book a COVID-19 vaccine shot, said Steve Madden, Grande Spirit general manager. Eligibility was expanded to everyone outside lodges born in 1946 or before as of Feb. 24, with availability based on supply. “We’re excited, and it’s good to see the supply catch up to the number of people waiting,” Madden said. He said Grande Spirit is aware of many relieved seniors and families. Seniors’ vaccinations began at Pioneer Lodge in Grande Prairie Wednesday morning, followed by Heritage Lodge and Wild Rose Manor later that day, he said. Vaccinations at Clairmont’s Lakeview facility will take place all today, Madden said. Amisk Court vaccinations are scheduled for March 3, and he said he is hopeful the supply will allow these immunizations to go forward. Residents will be contacted by their care teams, according to Alberta Health Services. All other seniors can book an appointment for a vaccine through AHS, by calling 811 or going to albertahealthservices.ca, though some early registrants Wednesday morning experienced system crashes due to heavy traffic. Beaverlodge resident Eleanor Lord said she began trying to book an appointment 8 a.m. Wednesday morning and at press time hadn’t succeeded. “The online system has crashed and 811 is continuously busy,” Lord said. She said they’ll keep trying, but she’s wondering if vaccines will run out. Family members can book a shot on behalf of seniors but must provide the senior’s Alberta Health Care number and date of birth, according to AHS. The continuation of the vaccine rollout adds seniors to a growing list of eligible recipients. Others include health-care workers in COVID-19 units and emergency departments. Vaccinations of elders began at Horse Lake First Nation this month, chief Ramona Horseman told Town & Country News last week. More than 29,000 long-term care residents have received two doses of vaccine to date, according to the Alberta government. The ongoing first phase of immunizations will be followed by a second possibly beginning in April, depending on vaccine supply. The vaccine will be offered to everyone 65 to 74, First Nations and Métis people 60 to 64, and supportive-living facility staff who haven’t already been immunized, according to the government. They will be followed by everyone 18 to 64 with “high-risk underlying health conditions,” then staff and residents of living facilities like homeless shelters, and then everyone 50 to 64 and indigenous people 35 to 49. Brad Quarin, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Town & Country News
(Tom Ayers/CBC - image credit) Cape Breton regional council has cleared the way for a commercial development at the former Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Sydney. Developer Kevin Colford plans to convert the 140-year-old church into a venue for business meetings and fine dining. On Tuesday, council unanimously voted to eliminate the need for the church to create more than 80 parking spaces as part of the North End planning strategy and land-use bylaw. Mayor Amanda McDougall said changing the municipal planning rules was the right thing to do. "It's nice to have that part of this process concluded, and for council to recognize and be unified on the fact that we do value development like we see from Kevin and the Sacred Heart church," she said. Nearly 90 people made submissions to a public hearing on changes to the planning rules, with none opposed to the development. McDougall has long said parking regulations shouldn't get in the way of progress, voicing her support as a councillor for development in Sydney. Most said parking is not a problem, but some criticized council, saying CBRM should not be finding ways to block business growth. McDougall said council moved as quickly as it could given the provincial process for making planning changes. "What people sometimes don't realize is that we, municipal units across the province, are creations of the province," she said. "We don't necessarily have the authority to do much when it comes to development and working outside of the Municipal Government Act." Coun. Eldon MacDonald, whose district includes the historic North End neighbourhood, took exception to people complaining that council was somehow blocking business development. He said the inclusion of parking requirements under municipal planning rules comes from the province and from the people who lived in the neighbourhood years ago. MacDonald says it was people living in the North End who approached CBRM in 2004 to put a parking strategy in place to protect residents. "The residents of the North End wanted to make sure that their residential neighbourhood was a good neighbourhood to live [in]. They approached CBRM to put a strategy in place and asked if CBRM would work with them to do that," he said. McDougall said the province has to sign off now that council has OK'd the development, and then the developer can apply for a permit and open his business. MORE TOP STORIES
TERRACE, B.C. — The family of a pregnant Indigenous woman who alleges she was turned away from a northern British Columbia hospital and later gave birth to a stillborn baby says a review of the incident must be made public. Sarah Morrison has alleged she was denied maternity services at Kitimat General Hospital on Jan. 27 and had to travel to another facility 65 kilometres away in Terrace, where she delivered a stillborn infant. Dustin Gaucher, Morrison's uncle, says the results of a review by the Northern Health Authority must be released publicly to prevent it from "hiding the truth," adding that no one in his family including Morrison has been contacted to assist with the probe. Health Minister Adrian Dix announced the review shortly after Morrison's family accused the Kitimat hospital of turning her away and alleged anti-Indigenous racism. Northern Health says in a statement that the findings won't be made public because provincial legislation prohibits release of results and recommendations from quality of care reviews. A spokeswoman for the health authority says the legislation is meant to promote open discussion and full participation with health-care professionals in order to determine if any changes should be made to future practices. Gaucher says if the review results are not released, little will come of it except his family will "relive our trauma." "This review is just that. The people out there want answers, but nobody gets any answers," he said in an interview. Morrison and her partner have filed a statement of claim in B.C. Supreme Court alleging the Northern Health authority, several doctors, Kitimat General Hospital and Mills Memorial Hospital used racial stereotypes and failed to provide emergency care. None of the allegations have been proven in court and no statements of defence have been filed. Northern Health said in a statement on Feb. 12 that it could not comment on the case for privacy reasons, but its board has endorsed a review of allegations of racism in health care at its hospitals. "We do wish to express that the loss of a child is tragic and our hearts go out to the family." Its statement said the review will seek guidance from Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, B.C.'s former representative for children and youth, who wrote a report about anti-Indigenous racism in the province's health-care system. Mills Memorial has said the health authority would respond on its behalf. None of the others named in the lawsuit could be reached for comment. (CFTK) This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 24, 2021. The Canadian Press
Les investisseurs parieraient aujourd’hui sur de futures hausses des cours, tout en étant conscients que l’envolée actuelle ne reflète pas l’activité économique réelle.
(Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press - image credit) Canada's COVID-19 vaccine rollout needs to guarantee equal access for migrants and undocumented workers, advocates for migrant rights say. The Migrant Rights Network says it fears that countless migrant and undocumented workers won't get vaccinated because of their immigration status — either because they lack access to health coverage or they worry about their personal information being shared with immigration enforcement authorities. "While federal and provincial governments have made promises and assurances that vaccine access will be universal, policies and practices have not changed," said Syed Hussan, a member of the Migrant Rights Network secretariat, at a virtual press conference today. "Concrete action is urgently necessary to ensure life-saving public health measures are accessible to all migrant and undocumented people." WATCH: Advocates call for equal access to vaccines for migrants and undocumented workers The group laid out a list of demands in an open letter signed by 270 civil society organizations and addressed to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and provincial and territorial leaders. Their goals include: making sure vaccines are free for everyone in Canada, regardless of immigration status; ensuring that getting a vaccine doesn't require a health card; and directing vaccine providers to not demand personal information in exchange for receiving a vaccine dose. The group also said that vaccines shouldn't be mandatory and that health care providers should be trained not to turn people away if they don't have a health card or access to health insurance. The letter comes as provinces and territories make plans for a country-wide mass vaccination campaign. The quantity of vaccine doses being delivered to Canada is expected to ramp up substantially in the coming weeks and months. Many lack health cards The Migrant Rights Network estimates that over 1.6 million people in Canada don't have permanent resident status and says that many of them work in essential jobs in such sectors as health care, cleaning, construction, delivery and agriculture. The group says many migrants and undocumented workers are being denied vaccination because they don't have health cards — which in many cases are tied to work or study permits. The group was joined at the press conference by an undocumented worker at a long-term care home in Toronto who came to Canada in 2014. The woman — identified only as "Lily" during the press conference — said her immigration status expired in Jan. 2020, leaving her undocumented and without an Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) card. Lily said she has been denied the COVID-19 vaccine, while all the residents and staff in the home where she works have received two shots already. "I am on the front line every day, just like everyone else who lives and works in the home. But while they are better protected from the virus's spread, I am not," said Lily. "Undocumented workers are already denied access to health care, housing, social services and legal rights. Now we are being denied access to COVID vaccinations because it is tied to an OHIP card, which we do not have." Dr. Danyaal Raza is a family doctor at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto and board chair of Canadian Doctors for Medicare. Dr. Danyaal Raza, board chair of the physicians' advocacy group Canadian Doctors for Medicare, said he was part of an outreach team that went into a Toronto homeless shelter last week to vaccinate residents there. Raza said the team offers residents vaccinations without asking to see their health cards. They were also given the option of providing an alias. Raza, who is also a family doctor at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto, said this model should be in place across the country — especially as provinces and territories prepare to conduct mass vaccination campaigns in the coming months. "We need to make sure that this is the case at every single vaccine clinic because we're hearing now that it's not, and that's not acceptable, especially if we're going to hit that target for herd immunity," said Raza. Vaccines will be free and accessible: PHAC Vancouver MP Jenny Kwan, the federal NDP's critic for immigration, refugees and citizenship, backed the call for vaccine access for migrants and undocumented workers. "Migrant workers and undocumented workers do critical work in Canada and we have to ensure that we do our part in protecting them from COVID outbreaks without any fear of reprisals," said Kwan. "Not only is including migrant workers and undocumented workers in the vaccination process the right thing to do, if we aren't targeting hotspots for transmission and protecting the most vulnerable to infection, then we are only prolonging the pandemic for everyone and adding additional strain to our hospitals." The Public Health Agency of Canada confirmed that the two COVID-19 vaccines that have been approved for use in Canada — from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna — are free and will be accessible to everyone in Canada. "While they're available to priority populations first, they'll be available to everyone in Canada who is recommended to get the vaccine by federal, provincial and territorial public health authorities," Anna Maddison said by email. "This applies to everyone in Canada, including those who aren't citizens (and who are over the age of 16 for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine or over the age of 18 for the Moderna vaccine)." But Maddison pointed out that provincial and territorial governments are responsible for administering the vaccine. Each province and territory has its own separate immunization plan laying out who can get a vaccine and when, along with the location of vaccination sites. A spokesperson for the Ontario Ministry of Health said an OHIP card isn't necessary to receive a vaccine — although another piece of government-issued photo ID is, such as a driver's licence, passport or other provincial health card. B.C.'s Ministry of Health said people looking to get vaccinated in that province will need to show proof of age and Canadian residency. The ministry said it needs to collect some information so that anyone who receives the vaccine can be followed up with by public health for health reasons, and for scheduling a second dose. Any information provided to public health for the purpose of the immunization plan will not be shared with other organizations, the ministry said. Over two million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been distributed by the federal government since immunization began in December, and over 1.6 million doses have been administered, according to the COVID-19 Tracker project.
WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell told Congress on Wednesday that the central bank will not start raising interest rates until it believes its goals on maximum employment and inflation have been reached. Powell also warned that many who had worked in industries hardest hit by the pandemic and ensuing recession will likely need to find different jobs. As he did before the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, Powell told the House Financial Services Committee that the Fed is in no hurry to raise its benchmark short-term interest rates or to begin trimming its $120 billion in monthly bond payments used to put downward pressure on longer-term rates. Financial markets, which had begun to wane Tuesday on fears that higher inflation might trigger an earlier-than-expected tightening of credit conditions by the Fed, rebounded on Powell's comments. That trend extended into Wednesday with the S&P 500 index rising more than 1%. Powell said the Fed does not see any indication inflation could race out of control. While price increases might accelerate in coming months, Powell said those increases are expected to be temporary and not a sign of long-run inflation threats. He said the central bank would not start to trim its $120 billion in monthly bond purchases until “substantial further progress” has been made toward the Fed’s goals on inflation and employment. Hikes in the Fed’s benchmark interest rate, now at a record low of zero to 0.25%, will not occur until the Fed has seen inflation reach its 2% target and run slightly above that level, with employment falling to a level viewed as maximum employment, he said. Powell has noted recently that, while the official U.S. unemployment rate in January dropped to 6.3%, the actual rate is closer to 10% when taking into account the millions of people who have given up looking for a job. Even as the job market improves, a portion of the 10 million people still out of work may find it hard to get new jobs, he said. He attributed that to the changes brought on by the pandemic in such industries as retail services and tourism. In many cases, the jobs people left may no longer be there, which will mean those workers will need access to job retraining to find work in other areas, Powell said. The House is expected to take up later this week President Joe Biden’s proposed $1.9 trillion relief measure, which includes stimulus payments of up to $1,400 for individuals and expanded unemployment benefits and support for state and local governments. Republicans have attacked the measure as too expensive and unnecessary given growing signs that the country doesn’t need further support. Democrats, however, have argued that with nearly 10 million still out of work compared to a year ago, further support is needed. Powell repeatedly refused to take a position on Biden’s proposal, saying that it was up to Congress and the administration to decide. While repeating his comment in his Senate testimony that he believes the economy is a “a long way from our employment and inflation goals,” Powell did agree with that there have been some encouraging signs that the economy could accelerate further as new COVID-19 cases decline and vaccines are more widely distributed. Some private forecasters have said the overall economy might grow at a rate of 6% or better this year, after having shrunk 3.5% last year, the worst performance since 1946. GOP lawmakers pressed Powell to say whether he thought such a growth rate was possible, but he refused to be pinned down to a specific target for gross domestic product growth. “There is a reason for optimism in the second half of the year if we get the pandemic under control,” Powell said. Martin Crutsinger, The Associated Press
ANKARA, Turkey — Turkish police have detained a suspected Iraqi Islamic State group militant and rescued a 7-year-old girl from Iraq’s Yazidi religious minority he had allegedly been holding captive, the state-run news agency reported Wednesday. The man, identified by his initials S.O., was detained in an early morning raid in the capital Ankara, the Anadolu Agency reported. Another person, identified as N.H.R., was also detained during the raid. The suspect had once served as an officer in the Iraqi army, the agency said, adding that police and the country’s intelligence agency had been monitoring his moves. They timed the raid so that the child wasn't placed at risk, the agency reported. The girl was later placed in the care of Turkey’s social services. The IS group attacked the heartland of the Yazidi community, at the foot of Iraq's Sinjar mountain, in 2014. Hundreds of Yazidis were killed and thousands of women and children were abducted, many forced into slavery. A day earlier, police detained a French IS suspect near the French Embassy in Ankara, Anadolu reported. The woman, who was identified as Sarah Talib, was taken into custody as she approached the embassy to allegedly seek repatriation to France. The pro-government Daily Sabah newspaper said Talib joined the IS group in Syria and is believed to have illegally crossed the border into Turkey. Anadolu Agency said the woman would be deported to France following her questioning by counterterrorism police. The Associated Press
Several international travellers arriving at Toronto's Pearson International Airport have refused to comply with a new rule requiring a three-day hotel quarantine, local police said Wednesday. Peel Region police said that while most cases were resolved after conversations with officers, some people refused to follow the rules that took effect this week and were fined $880 under Ontario regulations. Police said they will not detain anyone for breaking the hotel quarantine rule unless there are aggravating circumstances involved, such as a criminal offence. They added that the Public Health Agency of Canada would be responsible for any further potential fines for travellers under the Quarantine Act. The Quarantine Act states that anyone arriving in Canada must stay in an isolation hotel for three nights. They may only leave after a negative COVID-19 test, but are expected to self-isolate for a total of 14 days. Dr. Lawrence Loh, Peel Region's medical officer of health, said Wednesday that the quarantine measures are in place to protect the public. "It's unfortunate (...) that this might be occurring," said Loh. "Please remember that it's a disease that spreads from person to person and it takes all of us to do our part." Patrick Brown, the mayor of Brampton, Ont., just north of the airport, said that people who choose to ignore the regulations are being selfish. "By not being mindful that you can bring dangerous variants into the country, you're being selfish to your neighbours, to your city," said Brown. "I hope that people do abide by the new stricter guidelines." Staying in a government-approved isolation hotel costs up to $2,000 for the three-night stay. The hotel stays, which must be paid for by the travellers, are among a series of measures that came into effect on Monday to limit the spread of COVID-19 and more contagious variants of the virus. Most incoming air travellers will need to get tested for the virus upon arrival and again toward the end of their mandatory 14-day quarantine. Travellers arriving at land borders will be given self-swab kits, and testing will be provided on-site at five high-volume border crossings. The new rules are in addition to previous orders that require a negative test result within 72 hours of arrival. Travellers will need to complete a second test on Day 10 of their self-isolation period. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said the tighter border controls are meant to keep everyone safe. -- with files from Denise Paglinawan. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 24, 2021. John Chidley-Hill, The Canadian Press