Canada's first federal leader of the Green Party, Elizabeth May, is officially stepping down from the top position. Eric Sorensen looks at how May's career has impacted the country's political landscape.
In the aftermath of a wedding that became a COVID-19 superspreading event, some experts are calling for officials in Alberta to enact tighter restrictions on social gatherings.At least 49 active cases of COVID-19 have been linked to a wedding with 63 attendees held earlier this month in Calgary. Aggressive contact tracing is underway to identify anyone who may have been exposed and ensure they are isolating and getting tested. Anyone at risk is being contacted directly by Alberta Health Services. And on Tuesday, Alberta reported 323 new cases of COVID-19 and one more death, again breaking the record for the number of active cases and prompting Dr. Deena Hinshaw to say Alberta is in a "danger zone."It's all a recipe for concern, says Dr. Joe Vipond, an ER physician in Calgary and a co-founder of the Masks4Canada advocacy group."This can explode if we let our guard down," he said."We just seem to be failing to learn from other places when they were at this level of the curve, and with exponential growth, things are going to get worse unless we put new measures in place."The measures Vipond would like to see include limiting indoor gatherings to five people, and mandatory masking across the province.Dr. Leyla Asadi, an infectious diseases physician at the University of Alberta, is also worried."The numbers are very concerning to me and highly suggestive of us having entered into the second wave, or the fall wave of COVID-19 infections," she said."If we allow the virus to continue spreading, there will be more of these events." Asadi says Alberta should emulate parts of Ontario's Modified Stage 2 restrictions, under which all social gatherings and public events are limited to a maximum of 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors. Alberta's current rules state that 100 people are allowed at indoor events where people are seated, like wedding ceremonies, and 50 people are allowed for indoor social gatherings such as wedding receptions and birthday parties.But Asadi says Alberta likely won't need to resort to a widespread lockdown because experts know more about the virus than they did in the spring."So we know with this virus, there tends to be superspreading events. So if we can focus on areas where we think transmission is most likely, we can have targeted intervention that can hopefully allow us to gain control of the spread again," she said.
On July 13, 2018, two separate groups of friends made plans to meet up that night on Saint John's boardwalk to listen to live music. Hours later, the groups would cross paths briefly, leaving one man unconscious on the pavement with a fatal head injury and another man in police custody. William Ronald Jordan, 21, is charged with manslaughter in the death of 54-year-old navy veteran Anthony Dwyer. On the second day of the trial, Marilyn Steeves, 64, testified that she met up with Dwyer and his partner, Catherine Geldart, at a pub in Petitcodiac. The couple was heading to Saint John to watch a friend perform on the boardwalk. Steeves agreed to go along and five of them piled into Dwyer's van. She said they had a pleasant evening on the boardwalk and were preparing to leave when she heard that Dwyer had been injured. Under cross-examination from defence lawyer James McConnell, Steeves said Dwyer was the kind of person to approach complete strangers and strike up a conversation. She agreed with McConnell that Dwyer also had a "strong personality" and "wouldn't hesitate to argue his point." Steeves said Dwyer had been drinking that night and that another member of their group was going to drive Dwyer's van back to Petitcodiac. Another witness, Sam Mallett, said he's best friends with Jordan. He told the jury that he joined Jordan that night and shared a joint with him and a few other people at the amphitheatre near the boardwalk. The two, along with Jack Rabb, then made their way along the boardwalk, heading to a bar for a drink. Along the way, said Mallett, they were approached by an acquaintance of Jordan's who was wearing a neck brace. The man gave them a small cigar and then moved a short distance away. Mallett said Dwyer approached soon after and asked Jordan where he got the cigar. He said Dwyer demanded it back. Jordan refused and Dwyer got more agitated, said Mallett. He said Dwyer kept getting closer to Jordan and became "more assertive." He said the exchange escalated very quickly. Jordan asked Dwyer what he was going to do about it. Mallett recalled Dwyer responded by saying that he would take his two fingers and push them into Jordan's throat — as he did just that. "It was quick, but not a jab," testified Mallett. It was at that point, he said, that Jordan swung a closed fist and punched Dwyer in the face. "I really don't think, at that point, there was anything else he could do," said Mallett. Witnesses differed on the nature of the physical contact Dwyer made. Mallet says it was pressure to the throat with two fingers, while Rabb says it was more of a jab to the throat with four straight fingers. Another man, Jeff Kyle, who watched the exchange from a nearby patio, said it was a two-handed push to the chest. But all agree that Jordan responded by punching Dwyer in the face and that he fell back and struck his head on the pavement with a sickening sound. Again, there was a difference of opinion about Jordan's punch. Some said it was a left hook to right side of Dwyer's face, others say a right hook to the left side. One said it was a left-handed punch that landed on the left side of Dwyer's face. Jordan was arrested on the boardwalk by police a short time later.His girlfriend, Sarah Taylor, testified Wednesday that she had been with Jordan on the boardwalk that night, but had parted company shortly before the incident. The two met up immediately after and Jordan told her, "I think I just knocked somebody out."She said he looked shocked and confused and that he told her the man he punched "had his hands all over me." Taylor said she was with Jordan a short time later when he was taken into police custody. Rabb, testifying by video link from his home in Ottawa, said the exchange between Dwyer and Jordan happened right in front of him. He called Dwyer a "provocateur" and said Jordan wasn't aggressive or threatening as Dwyer continued to invade his personal space. Before Dwyer made contact with Jordan, Rabb said he believed the entire exchange to be an absurd joke over "what amounted to a third-hand cigarillo" that was half-smoked by that time. Then came the "judo-chop motion" from Dwyer, said Rabb, that sent Jordan back a couple of steps and caused him to cough. He said Jordan responded with the punch to the face that appeared to knock Dwyer out immediately because he made no effort to break his fall. "He fell down like a sack of bricks," said Rabb of Dwyer. "He fell back absolutely still, like a plank, straight backward." On Tuesday, jurors heard that two emergency room nurses who happened to be on the boardwalk tended to Dwyer immediately and stayed with him until the ambulance arrived. Dwyer died in hospital three days later. The trial continues Thursday morning.
The Toronto Trauma Centre St. Michael's is dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak. At least five patients have been confirmed positive for the virus in its emergency department. Miranda Anthistle reports.
Chris Rose and Alyssa Holland moved to Yellowknife in 2015. Five years and two kids later, they had no plans to leave. The couple had embraced the North. They paddled the North Arm with their kids this summer. Alyssa sang with Flora and the Fireweeds, a six-piece band that played gigs all over town. Their parents came to visit them and the children. Trips home to Ontario to see other family members, including a set of great-grandparents, were no big deal. Then the pandemic hit. Now, three-year-old Theo hasn't seen his paternal grandfather in nine months. Alistair, aged 18 months, doesn't remember him. "A switch kind of flipped for us at some point in the spring," said Holland. "I think it was just this moment when we realized ... how far we are from the people we still love." "It became pretty obvious that we hadn't spent much time with older grandparents and if we lost them, we would regret it," said Rose. The couple sold their house and made plans to move to Ottawa later this month. And they're not alone. Former CBC Yellowknife reporter Randi Beers moved to Nova Scotia this fall so her new baby, Wally, could be closer to his grandparents. "As a journalist, quitting your job and moving is kind of a scary thing right now," Beers said. "I was hesitant."After her husband pointed out that it could be challenging to get airline tickets, and how quickly their son was already growing, she came around. "Let's actually move closer to family," Beers said. "I think that's a good decision right now." Samantha Mtatiro and her partner moved up to Yellowknife from B.C. Their kids are now seven and nine. Mtatiro normally visits family, or hosts family visitors, every two months or so. The pandemic, and the 14-day isolation requirements, have put a stop to that kind of easy travel. "My family, and like my mom and especially my mother-in-law, they're actually pretty devastated about it." That mother-in-law lives in Tanzania. Before the pandemic, she'd made plans for a three-month visit. Those plans were cancelled, and now Mtatiro doesn't know when her mother-in-law will see her kids again. Mtatiro is a photographer. She often shoots stills of families with newborn babies. Now, she wonders how some of her clients cope without family members flying in to help. "I can't even imagine what that would be like, especially going into winter." She said the pandemic is not affecting everyone equally. "If you have your extended family here and your lifelong friends, it's easy to hunker down and stay here and not leave," she said. "But for a lot of the people that have moved to the North recently, or don't have those family connections, you kinda rely on your coworkers or your church groups and then all that closes down and you're just alone, right? "It's affecting everybody differently."
For months, more than 150 teams around the world have been working at an unprecedented pace to develop a vaccine against the new coronavirus. Ten of those vaccine candidates are now in Phase 3 clinical trials, in which each is given to thousands of people to ensure it's both safe and effective — the final leg of the process before their potential approval.In the fight against COVID-19, that feels like a light at the end of a long, dark tunnel.But once at least one vaccine is approved, what comes next? "Approval itself is not going to be an overnight solution," said Matthew Miller, an associate professor at the Michael G. DeGroote Institute for Infectious Disease Research at McMaster University in Hamilton."There's going to be a significant amount of time required to distribute the vaccine and then have enough doses prepared to administer to the population."Public health and vaccination experts also say the months after Canada starts acquiring a vaccine will be rife with challenges, both logistically and ethically, as public health officials will need to determine which groups should get priority access — be it health-care workers or other vulnerable demographics — as production scales up to meet demand."There will inevitably be supply chain issues," Miller warned. "It's going to take time for the vaccine manufacturers to produce enough doses, and there's going to need to be prioritization over who will get those first doses when they become available."WATCH | Dr. Theresa Tam on the flu and COVID-19 vaccines:Canada preordering 6 candidatesEarlier this year, the federal government said it put $1 billion into preorders of six foreign vaccine candidates. It's a move that hedges our bets, with Canada set to receive 20 million to 76 million doses of each vaccine — if any successfully make it through clinical trials and gain approval from Health Canada.Should at least one of the preorders prove safe and effective, federal and provincial officials need a strategy in place to roll it out among different groups, ensuring there are no "inequities" between regions, noted Alison Thompson, an associate professor in the Leslie Dan faculty of pharmacy and Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto."This is something that we can get out in front of," she said. "We know a vaccine could become available in the next few months."In September, Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam said preparations for administering this year's flu vaccine offered a "good rehearsal" for mass immunization programs for a coronavirus vaccine.But some Ontario physicians recently warned those efforts fell short, with initial rounds of supplies drying up quickly amid early and higher-than-usual demand.The province, however, has said more shipments are coming — and stressed the program was meant to take a staggered approach to rolling out the vaccine, first targeting vulnerable populations like long-term care residents before the general public. Protecting 'vulnerable' firstThat "prioritization" approach could also prove crucial while rolling out a vaccine for the coronavirus, both to conserve supplies while production scales up and protect those most at risk."We may be looking at protection for really important health-care workers, first responders, people who keep the economy running," Thompson said. "We might want to be protecting vulnerable populations first before anybody else."But who should be deemed most vulnerable, and first in line?There's no "one size fits all" approach behind that decision, Miller said, and in Canada a lot of factors are at play, from residents' ages to their socioeconomic status to their pre-existing health conditions.Health-care workers have proved at risk across the country, with a dozen dying and more than 21,000 falling ill — representing roughly 20 per cent of cases — in the pandemic's first wave, according to a September report from the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI).The largest death toll, however, was more than 5,300 elderly residents in long-term care, with those facilities accounting for more than 80 per cent of all Canadian COVID-19 deaths in the first wave, CIHI findings show.Racialized and marginalized communities have also been hard hit in areas like Toronto, where multiple diverse, lower-income neighbourhoods have experienced high case counts and test positivity rates for the virus have been more than triple the city's average, Toronto Public Health data shows.Alongside health-care workers on the front lines, it's remote Indigenous communities which "need to be first priority," based on the severe comorbidities, residential overcrowding and lack of access to health-care facilities found in many areas, according to Dr. Anna Banerji, an associate professor at the University of Toronto and faculty lead for Indigenous and refugee health. "All Indigenous communities are at highest risk compared to non-Indigenous communities — by far," she said.Scaling up could take 'many months'Miller said the process of scaling up vaccinations from priority groups to the broader public could take "many months," if not a year or more.That time frame could also involve a less-discussed stage of vaccine research: Phase 4 clinical trials, after candidates are already on the market.It's a time to evaluate vaccines' effectiveness and safety in a "real world" setting, Miller said, and could offer clues for future generations of COVID-19 vaccines."The first vaccines approved may not necessarily be the most effective vaccines," he said. The vaccine for human papillomavirus, or HPV, was later expanded to protect people against more strains of the virus, for instance, while an early version of the shot for shingles was far less effective than a later form which has an efficacy of more than 90 per cent.In those instances, people wound up getting additional rounds of newer vaccines to ensure the highest level of protection, Miller explained, adding it's still not clear if people will need revaccination to protect against this coronavirus. The more pressing concern now is getting at least one first option out to the public in hopes of winding down this months-long pandemic.While the threshold for achieving herd immunity — which occurs when a large portion of a community becomes immune to a disease, making its continued spread less likely — isn't clear yet for COVID-19, it could be as high as 70 per cent of people, said epidemiologist Raywat Deonandan, an associate professor at the University of Ottawa.That's a level of protection Canada won't hit for quite some time after a vaccine becomes available, assuming enough residents get the shot."If we don't get there, then we have a functioning society, with some restrictions still in place, like distancing and mask wearing and maybe limits on gatherings, but no more lockdowns and things like that," he said. "So either way, the vaccine is going to help us."
Curriculum advisers hand-picked by the Alberta government are recommending changes to the kindergarten-to-Grade 4 curriculum for fine arts and social studies that would eliminate all references to residential schools and their harms to Indigenous people while removing references to "equity."The advisors also recommend that seven-and eight-year-olds learn about feudalism, Chinese dynasties and Homer's Odyssey in social studies classes.The drafts, obtained by CBC News, include lengthy lists of names, landmarks and events for young children to memorize. They say five- and six-year-olds in the first grade should be familiar with the artwork of Claude Monet, Georgia O'Keefe, Pablo Picasso and Edgar Degas.They also say first graders should learn Bible verses about creation as poetry and fourth graders should learn that most non-white Albertans are Christians.Curriculum experts familiar with the province's process say the suggestions are a huge departure from where work was heading before the United Conservative Party was elected in 2019.Educational experts also say the proposed changes are regressive, racist, unsupported by research and would put Alberta's school curriculum vastly out of step with most of North America."I would say it would be a laughingstock," said Prof. Keith Barton, a specialist in social studies curriculum and instruction at Indiana University in Bloomington. "To say that second graders are going to be learning about ancient China and ancient Rome, or in geography, that they're just going to be learning the names of capitals — nobody does this."Recommendations 'utter nonsense'Barton reviewed drafts of the social studies K-4 curriculum publicly released in 2018 and documents obtained by CBC containing recommended edits. The recommendations are "utter nonsense," he said."It just showed no familiarity with how children think and learn," he said. "And it certainly showed no familiarity with the past 30 or 40 years of research theorizing about what history and social studies education should look like."Dwayne Donald, an associate professor of education at the University of Alberta, is an expert in Indigenous teaching and curriculum.He said he felt hopeful about the potential for the previously proposed elementary curriculum to better include Indigenous perspectives. The suggested changes erase all of that work, he said."It makes me feel sick, actually, that we're at this point," said Donald, a member of the Papaschase Cree Nation.Colin Aitchison, press secretary to Education Minister Adriana LaGrange, said the documents only represent advice to the minister, and are not final. He also said curriculum writers are not obliged to include the advisers' recommendations.He said the proposals will go before hundreds of teachers and experts who serve on curriculum working groups for feedback later this fall before the minister signs off on the curriculum.Promise of curriculum 'without political bias'In 2016, the former NDP government announced curriculum writers would modernize the K-12 curriculum in every subject at once, simultaneously in English and French — a first for Alberta.That government promised better inclusion of different cultural and demographic perspectives. It assembled curriculum working groups consisting of 400 teachers and subject experts. Tens of thousands of Albertans gave feedback on curriculum drafts via government surveys.In opposition, conservatives accused the NDP of smuggling political ideology into the curriculum and claimed it was being written in secret.Once elected in 2019, the UCP government paused the process and appointed a new panel of advisers to review the work already done.In August, Education Minister Adriana LaGrange announced a new provincial direction for education based on the panel's advice. She pledged to deliver a social studies curriculum "taught without political bias" that offered an "objective understanding of Albertan, Canadian and world history and civic literacy."She said lessons would focus on "core knowledge" — a theory that all students should learn the same set of foundational information.Elementary school curriculum should be ready for classroom testing by next fall, she said, and be in all schools by fall 2022.She also appointed eight "subject matter experts" to give advice. All were men. The social studies adviser is Chris (C.P.) Champion, a history writer and former staffer for Premier Jason Kenney when he was an MP in Ottawa. Champion has written that including First Nation perspectives in school is a "fad," which prompted critics to call for his resignation.Lack of clarity on advisersLaGrange declined an interview request for this story. Her press secretary, Aitchison, said the social studies documents contain advice from multiple people, including Champion. Aitchison would not say how many people, or who the other advisers were.Advice for changes to the K-4 fine arts curriculum and K-2 music curriculum was signed by adviser William French, a board member of the Shakespeare Company in Calgary. He has also worked as a lawyer and a translator.Neither Champion nor French responded to CBC inquiries about this story.After facing public criticism about the all-male slate, the government brought on nine more advisers for September and October, including four Indigenous elders and seven women.Pat McCormack, professor emeritus of Native Studies at the University of Alberta, was contracted to provide advice on Indigenous teachings. When contacted by CBC last week, she had not seen any drafts of the curriculum. The other Indigenous advisers did not respond to messages.Michael Zwaagstra, a Manitoba high school teacher and author who favours traditional education approaches, said he likes the direction Alberta is heading with the proposed changes. He subscribes to the "core knowledge" theory that children need to accumulate a roster of facts before they can comprehend how systems work."Getting more knowledge in your head isn't about making it easier to test, that's not the point at all," he said."The point is ... ensuring students have enough common knowledge so that they are able to engage with the world around them [and] understand some of the basics of our country."Professors say proposals untenableAmy von Heyking, a University of Lethbridge education professor who served on the UCP-appointed curriculum panel last year, said the curriculum proposals are out of step with the panel's recommendations."The expectation that students memorize lists of facts is contrary to everything we know about meaningful learning," she said in an email.She said the social studies suggestions are "untenable," and she hopes the government brings all proposals back before the hundreds of experts in the curriculum working groups."To take programs in such a radically different direction would be incredibly disappointing," she wrote.University of Alberta education Prof. Carla Peck, an expert in social studies curricula, said the proposals would put Alberta so far behind other provinces "it would be embarrassing."She called it a century-old, "factory line" approach that assumes every child is the same and that their interests don't matter.The "core knowledge" theory has also been widely discredited by academics, she said.Residential schools 'too sad' for children, writers saySeveral experts said the proposed arts and social studies changes turn their back on Alberta's commitment to the calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which say students must learn about the treaties and the harms of residential schools in all grades.The social studies draft authors propose residential schools be taught in later grades, alongside other examples of "harsh schooling."The authors say residential schools are "too sad" for young children to cover, while at the same time proposing they learn about Roman children and woman living as enslaved persons and hear of Julius Caesar's assassination.Melissa Purcell, executive staff officer of professional development for Indigenous education at the Alberta Teachers' Association, said the documents removed any allowances for students to hear history from Indigenous perspectives. It replaced them with token representations that make it sound as if Indigenous people only existed in the past, she said."This document is perpetuating systemic racism through whitewashing of the draft K-4 social studies and arts education curriculum," said Purcell, who is Dene and a member of the Smith's Landing First Nation.She said there is also a mismatch between the proposals and provincial teaching quality standards adopted last year, which require all Alberta teachers to be competent in teaching about treaties and residential schools.FIND OUT MORE: Don't know the history of the curriculum review process and its controversies? Read more here:___________________________________________________________________________
HALIFAX — The chief of the First Nation behind a disputed moderate livelihood lobster fishery in Nova Scotia says recent vandalism and the loss of potential sales have cost the band more than $1.5 million — and he wants those responsible to be held accountable.Mike Sack, chief of the Sipekne'katik First Nation, also alleged the band had been blacklisted by lobster buyers."The (non-Indigenous) commercial fishery has systematically boxed us out of the market," Sack said in a statement. "It will take time to rebuild our relationships in the supply chain of people and companies we did business with who are now rightly afraid of retaliation."Sack told reporters the band filed an application for a court injunction aimed at preventing people from harassing Indigenous fishers at the wharf in Saulnierville, N.S., where the livelihood fleet is based."We want the injunction to make sure people are safe in and around the wharf," Sack told a news conference in Digby, N.S.Later Wednesday, Nova Scotia Supreme Court Justice James Chipman granted the interim injunction, which among other things prohibits anyone from "threatening, coercing, harassing or intimidating" band members or people doing business with them.It prohibits any interference with Sipekne'katik fishing activities, including interfering with their gear at sea or on land. The order, which is in force until Dec. 15, also says the Saulnierville wharf, another in Weymouth and a lobster pound in New Edinburgh used by the band cannot be blockaded.The First Nation attracted national attention on Sept. 17 when it launched a "moderate livelihood" fishing fleet in St. Marys Bay in southwestern Nova Scotia, almost two months before the federally regulated fishing season was set to open.Sack has said the Mi'kmaq band's members are exercising their constitutionally protected treaty right to fish where and when they want, as affirmed by the Supreme Court of Canada in a 1999 decision.Citing treaties signed in the 1760s, the court said the Mi'kmaq, Maliseet and Passamaquoddy bands in Eastern Canada can hunt, fish and gather to earn a "moderate livelihood."However, non-Indigenous protesters have asked federal authorities to stop the Indigenous harvest because the Supreme Court ruling also said Ottawa could continue to regulate the fishery — so long as it can justify such a move. The dispute has escalated into confrontations marked by violence, arrests and allegations of assault and arson. Two buildings storing lobsters caught by Indigenous harvesters were vandalized last week, and one of them was burned to the ground on Saturday.Amid rising tensions, the First Nation says it can't sell lobster caught by those taking part in its moderate livelihood fishery or the band's commercial communal operation to the east in the Bay of Fundy."It's like we've been blacklisted, and we're just hopeful that we can quickly come to some resolution and expedite getting our lobster to market," Sack said, adding that the band is also having a hard time buying new lobster traps."Pulling our commercial fishery this week and for the upcoming seasons will financially devastate our community," he said.A spokeswoman for the First Nation said the 11 boats taking part in the moderate livelihood fishery will continue to haul in their catches from Lobster Fishing Area 34 and put them in storage.However, Sack said the band's three boats used for the communal commercial fishery, which were operating in an adjacent area that opened for fishing last week, have been pulled from the water due to "intimidation and market embargoes."The chief said the three boats will be dispatched to St. Marys Bay to provide protection for the livelihood fleet. As well, he said the band is looking for a way to sell the 6,800 kilograms of lobster the band has harvested from the bay since Sept. 17.The provincial government regulates the sale of lobster by granting licences to approved lobster buyers. Sack said the band is looking for a provincial exemption, but he indicated the province wasn't in a co-operative mood."(Premier Stephen) McNeil just seems to be hiding behind the federal government," he said.Meanwhile, the RCMP continues to draw fire for their response to the violence, which included an alleged assault on Sack last week.Speaking at a news conference Wednesday in Ottawa, RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki defended the police force, disputing Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller comment Monday that the Mounties had "let down" Indigenous people."We are fully committed to keeping the peace, keeping people safe and enforcing the law," she said. "Our actions to date are indicative of our strong commitment to this mandate." Lucki confirmed additional officers from the other Maritime provinces had been dispatched to Nova Scotia: "When we saw that this situation was evolving, we felt that there was a need to bring in additional resources."Senator Murray Sinclair, who was chief commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, said Wednesday he was dismayed by the RCMP's lack of enforcement in Nova Scotia.During an online conversation with the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, the senator criticized the RCMP for "literally standing by and doing nothing" while criminal acts were being committed."To me, (it) was an act of negligence," Sinclair said, adding that he had submitted a complaint to the RCMP's complaints commission. "They were in fact facilitating the actions of the (non-Indigenous) fishers."On another front, Mi'kmaq leaders in Cape Breton are accusing the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans of illegally removing lobster traps set recently in St. Peters Bay. The 200 traps were placed in the bay as part of a similar moderate livelihood fishery, which is also operating outside the federally regulated season."The seizure of these traps by local officers are without the authorization or authority of their department or the minister," the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi'kmaw Chiefs said in a statement. "This is unacceptable and unlawful."This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 21, 2020. Michael MacDonald, The Canadian Press
Recent developments: * Four more people have died from COVID-19 in Ottawa and there are another 60 cases in the city, OPH reported Wednesday. * The Eastern Ontario Health Unit has logged another death from COVID-19.What's the latest?Ottawa Public Health (OPH) says participants in organized sports in the city are spreading COVID-19 before, during and after events.OPH is asking players not to carpool or eat with teammates who don't live under the same roof. Participants are also being advised against sharing gear or playing on more than one team.OC Transpo is set to install barriers on its buses to protect drivers from abusive and sometimes violent passengers — an issue the city has been looking into since the mid-2000s. A relevant benefit now is that they offer extra protection against the spread of COVID-19.WATCH | COVID-19 spreading during sports:Ottawa's COVID-19 death toll has increased by four and there are 60 new cases in the city, OPH said Wednesday. The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU), which covers the region east of Ottawa, has also reported another COVID-19-related death.How many cases are there?As of Wednesday's update from OPH, 6,226 Ottawa residents have tested positive for COVID-19. There are 717 known active cases, 5,201 resolved cases and 308 deaths.Testing numbers have been lower than the groups running it would like.Public health officials have reported more than 9,500 COVID-19 cases across eastern Ontario and western Quebec, with more than 7,900 of them resolved.Seventy-two people with COVID-19 have died elsewhere in eastern Ontario, along with 35 in western Quebec. What can I do?Both Ontario and Quebec are telling people to limit close contact only to those they live with or one other home if people live alone.In Ottawa — which has been rolled back to a modified Stage 2 — and Gatineau, Que., health officials are asking residents not to leave home unless it's essential. The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) covering communities such as Hawkesbury and Cornwall has said it will likely have to roll back.Indoor dining at restaurants has been prohibited, while gyms, cinemas, casinos and performing arts venues are all closed.Dr. Vera Etches, the capital's medical officer of health, has said the national capital's health-care system is on the verge of collapse, with hospitalizations rising swiftly and people experiencing delays getting test results.WATCH | OPH's morning update:OPH and some other local health units are urging people not to have a Halloween party with other households or go trick-or-treating.Ontario's chief medical officer of health said to listen to local officials but rule of thumb if trick-or-treating is allowed, people should stick to their neighbourhood and do it outside with their household only.Gatineau and parts of the Outaouais are now on red alert, which means restaurants and bars can't serve people indoors, organized sports are suspended and theatres must close.Quebecers are also urged not to travel to Ontario or between regions at different levels on its scale except for essential reasons.Even though most of the region has been declared a red zone, Premier François Legault said kids can trick-or-treat as long as they don't go with friends and precautions are taken when giving out candy.What about schools?There have been more than 180 schools in the wider Ottawa-Gatineau region with a confirmed case of COVID-19:Few have had outbreaks, which are declared by a health unit in Ontario when there's a reasonable chance someone who has tested positive caught COVID-19 during a school activity.As of mid-October, a small fraction of Ottawa students and staff had tested positive.WATCH | Grade 5 student talks about this year's lunch breaks:Distancing and isolatingThe novel coronavirus primarily spreads through droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, breathes or speaks onto someone or something.People can be contagious without symptoms.This means people should take precautions such as staying home when sick, keeping hands and frequently touched surfaces clean, socializing outdoors as much as possible and maintaining distance from anyone they don't live with — even with a mask on.Masks are mandatory in indoor public settings in Ontario and Quebec and are recommended outdoors when people can't stay the proper distance from others.Anyone with symptoms should self-isolate, as should anyone told to by a public health unit. If Ottawans don't, they face a fine of up to $5,000 per day in court. Kingston, Ont., has slightly different rules.Some people waiting for test results in Quebec don't have to stay home. Most people with a confirmed COVID-19 case in Quebec can end their self-isolation after 10 days under certain conditions.Health Canada recommends older adults and people with underlying medical conditions and/or weakened immune systems stay home as much as possible. Anyone who has travelled recently outside Canada must go straight home and stay there for 14 days.What are the symptoms of COVID-19?COVID-19 can range from a cold-like illness to a severe lung infection, with common symptoms including fever, a cough, vomiting and the loss of taste or smell. Less common symptoms include chills, headaches and pink eye. Children can develop a rash.If you have severe symptoms, call 911.Mental health can also be affected by the pandemic and resources are available to help.Where to get testedIn eastern Ontario:Ontario recommends only getting tested if you have symptoms, or if you've been told to by your health unit or the province.Anyone seeking a test should now book an appointment. Different sites in the area have different ways to book, including over the phone or going in person to get a time slot.People without symptoms, but who are part of the province's targeted testing strategy, can make an appointment at select pharmacies in Belleville, Kingston and Ottawa.Ottawa has five permanent sites, with additional mobile sites deployed wherever demand is particularly high.The Eastern Ontario Health Unit has sites in Alexandria, Cornwall, Hawkesbury, Limoges, Rockland and Winchester.The Leeds, Grenville and Lanark health unit has permanent sites in Almonte, Brockville, Kemptville and Smiths Falls. Pop-up test sites are happening tomorrow in Carleton Place and Friday in Perth.Kingston's test site is at the Beechgrove Complex. Napanee's test centre is open daily for people who call ahead.People can arrange a test in Bancroft and Picton by calling the centre or Belleville and Trenton online.Renfrew County residents should call their family doctor or 1-844-727-6404 for a test or with questions, COVID-19-related or not. Test clinic locations are posted weekly.WATCH | Retired U of O prof's website watched by U.S. State Department:In western Quebec:Tests are strongly recommended for people with symptoms or who have been in contact with someone with symptoms. People without symptoms can also get a test.Outaouais residents can make an appointment in Gatineau seven days a week at 135 blvd. Saint-Raymond or 617 avenue Buckingham.They can now check the approximate wait time for the Saint-Raymond site.There are recurring clinics by appointment in communities such as Gracefield, Val-des-Monts and Fort-Coulonge.Call 1-877-644-4545 with questions, including if walk-in testing is available nearby.First Nations, Inuit and Métis:Akwesasne has a mobile COVID-19 test site available by appointment only.Anyone returning to the community on the Canadian side of the international border who's been farther than 160 kilometres away — or visited Montreal — for non-essential reasons is asked to self-isolate for 14 days.Inuit in Ottawa can call the Akausivik Inuit Family Health Team at 613-740-0999 for service, including testing, in Inuktitut or English on weekdays.People in Pikwakanagan can book a COVID-19 test by calling 613-625-2259. Anyone in Tyendinaga who's interested in a test can call 613-967-3603.For more information
PARIS — President Emmanuel Macron promised Wednesday that France will not renounce freedoms taught by a schoolteacher beheaded by a radical Islamist last week after showing caricatures of the prophet of Islam to his class. At a national memorial at the Sorbonne University in central Paris, Macron praised history teacher Samuel Paty as the “face of the Republic” who “believed in knowledge.” Paty, 47, was murdered on Friday by an 18-year-old of Chechen origin who had become radicalized. He was in turn shot dead by police. “Samuel Paty ... became the face of the Republic, of our will to shatter terrorists, to (do away with) Islamists, to live like a community of free citizens in our country," Macron said. “We will continue." A ceremonial military guard carried the teacher's coffin into the cobblestone courtyard of the Sorbonne where the memorial took place before his family, government members and select guests. A giant screen was installed outside. The stirring ceremony, with readings that included a poem by Albert Camus to his own teacher, came hours after the prosecutor sketched out how the teenager came to kill Paty, with the suspected help of two young students at the school in a northwest Paris suburb. Jean-Francois Ricard said a 14-year-old and a 15-year-old are among seven people taken before an investigating magistrate on accusations of “complicity in murder in relation with a terrorist undertaking” and “criminal conspiracy.” The killer offered students at the school where Paty taught 300-350 euros ($355-$415) to help him pick out the educator, Ricard said during a news conference. “The investigation has established that the perpetrator knew the name of the teacher, the name of the school and its address, yet he did not have the means to identify him," the prosecutor said. "That identification has only been possible with the help of students from the same school.” He said the implication of the two young adolescents “appeared to be conclusive.” Authorities have identified the killer as Abdoullakh Anzorov., a Moscow-born Chechen refugee. Anzorov claimed responsibility in a text accompanied by a photograph of the victim found on his phone. The other suspects include a student's father who posted videos on social media that called for mobilization against the teacher and an Islamist activist who helped the man disseminate the virulent messages, which named Paty and gave the school's address, Ricard said. Two more men, aged 18 and 19, are accused of accompanying the attacker when he bought the weapons, including a knife and an airsoft gun, the prosecutor said. One of them allegedly drove Anzorov, who lived in the Normandy town of Evreux about 90 kilometres (56 miles) away, to near the school about three hours before the killing. Another 18-year-old suspect had close contacts with the attacker and endorsed radical Islamism, Ricard said. All three of them, who were friends of Anzorov, allegedly said that "he was ‘radicalizing’ for several months, marked by a change of behaviour, physical appearance, isolation, an assiduous frequentation of the mosque and ambiguous remarks about Jihad and the Islamic State group.” “Samuel Paty was the victim of a conspiracy of stupidity, hate, lies ... hate of the other ... hate of what we profoundly are," Macron said during his speech, which blended honours to the victim and the teaching profession with his government's efforts to root out Islamist radicals. On Wednesday morning, the French government issued an order to dissolve a domestic militant Islamic group, the Collective Cheikh Yassine. Government spokesperson Gabriel Attal said it was “implicated, linked to Friday’s attack” and it was used to promote anti-republican hate speech. Other groups will be dissolved “in the coming weeks” for similar reasons, Attal said. Named after a slain leader of the Palestinian Hamas, Collective Cheikh Yassine was founded in the early 2000s by the Islamist activist who is among the seven people accused of being accomplices to the attacker. Attal also confirmed that the government ordered a mosque in the northeast Paris suburb of Pantin to close for six months. The Pantin mosque is being punished for relaying the angry father’s message on social media. Authorities say it has long had an imam following the Salafist path, a rigorous interpretation of the Muslim holy book. A national memorial event is scheduled to be held Wednesday evening in the courtyard of the Sorbonne university. ___ Elaine Ganley in Paris contributed to this report. Sylvie Corbet, The Associated Press
In advance of the U.S. presidential election in November, a new film The Way I See It spotlights former White House chief photographer Pete Souza as he reflects on both the Barack Obama and Ronald Reagan presidencies, and how they differ from Donald Trump.At the core of the film directed by Dawn Porter, which was part of the 2020 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), is how respect for the office of the president and empathy for the people of America is critically important for anyone in that role. The message comes across by looking back at some of the most impactful and interesting photographs taken throughout Souza’s career at the White House.“I want people to think about what kind of person, what kind of human being do we want in the office of the presidency,” Souza told Yahoo Canada. “Do we want somebody who’s confident, respectful, dignified, ethical, moral or do we want somebody who’s a liar, who bullies people, who thinks the presidency is about him.”“Those are the two choices between the current president and Joe Biden, because Joe Biden has those same leadership qualities and human qualities as Barack Obama and Donald Trump has none of them.”Throwing ‘shade’ at TrumpSouza, who has photographed arguably the most notable Democratic and Republican presidents in U.S. history (although he had significantly more access to Obama), never sought out being featured in a documentary. He got the attention of Laura Dern and her production company’s team, who ended up attending one of Souza’s book talks and eventually convincing him to participate.The legendary photographer mostly kept his political opinions to himself but when Trump became U.S. president, he had to speak up and call out the behaviour and rhetoric he disagreed with. Souza started getting attention on social media when he began making using his images of Obama to compare the two presidents on Instagram, eventually collecting them into a book call “Shade: A Tale of Two Presidents.”While the “shade” is addressed throughout the film, it also shows that stark contrast between the photographs taken of Trump versus Obama. Authentic, emotional and humanizing moments that were able to be captured by Souza seemingly do not exist of President Trump.“I don’t know that they exist,” Souza said. “The one time we saw him supposedly consoling families was after those two mass shootings in Ohio and Texas, and they virtually showed all the video footage behind the scenes, that was all about him wanting to be treated like a rock star, he didn’t really console anybody.”“He just doesn’t have an ounce of empathy or compassion inside of him, that’s not who he is, everything’s about himself, it’s not about other people. I don’t know that those images exist because that’s not the kind of human being he is.”The importance of the still image for historyIf anyone was at all doubting the power of a still image, The Way I See It showcases the undeniable way Souza’s images, of both joyous and upsetting moments, can instantly impact your emotions.Some of the many notable images of Obama include the former U.S. president and officials in the situation room during the Bin Laden raid, five-year-old Jacob Philadelphia touching Obama’s hair in the Oval Office, and several touching images of Obama with his daughters and wife, Michelle. Souza released another book titled “Obama: An Intimate Portrait,” a visual biography of the Obama presidency.“[The still image] can evoke emotion in a more visceral way than video,” Souza explains “Everybody brings their own background and prejudices when looking at a still image, but at the same time it is a universal language and I think people can relate to an image and know that it's authentic, as soon as they see it.”Not only are these images beautiful but they also shape history, capturing moments in time for future generations to see, be informed and learn from.Moving forward, if Biden becomes the next U.S. president after the November election, Souza does plan to call Biden and “remind him that the job of the official White House photographer is to document the presidency for history.”“In order to do that, he needs to give his photographer the kind of access that I had with President Obama,” Souza said. “The Biden administration can make a determination on whether those images are made public or not, but for history, he's got to make sure that his photographer has access, and I have no doubt that Biden will understand that.”
The Kremlin is trying to intimidate opposition politician Alexei Navalny to discourage him from returning to Russia to campaign once he recovers from his poisoning, one of his close allies said. As the 44-year-old has convalesced in Germany where he was flown for medical care after falling ill in Siberia in August, Navalny's team says Russian bailiffs have frozen his bank accounts and the title to his flat. The Kremlin has since accused Navalny of working with the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, prompting the pro-government Federal News Agency to report that Navalny could be guilty of treason.
Telecoms equipment supplier Ericsson beat quarterly core earnings forecasts on Wednesday, helped by higher margins and China's 5G rollout, and said it was "more confident" about meeting its 2020 targets. Ericsson shares jumped as much as 9% to a five year high as gross margins reached their best level since 2006 and revenues rose at the Swedish company’s mainstay networks business despite disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The company has now won 112 5G contracts, up from 99 at the end of the second quarter, as more telecoms operators build next-generation networks and U.S. diplomatic pressure pushes out market leader Huawei from more countries.
Police are searching for the driver of a van who drove into the path of a CTrain, and then ran away after his vehicle was destroyed.Around 8:45 p.m. Tuesday, police say the driver pulled an illegal u-turn at the intersection of Memorial Drive and Deerfoot Trail S.E., between the Calgary Zoo and Barlow CTrain stations. His van was struck by the CTrain and sustained severe damage, and the driver took off on foot. The southbound to eastbound exit of Memorial Drive is closed, and the westbound left lanes were blocked. Calgary Transit said CTrains were travelling on a single track on the inbound tracks for Blue Line trains between the Zoo and Franklin while police investigate. Police are searching for the driver. They said as of 10 p.m. it was not yet known if the vehicle was stolen.
President Emmanuel Macron paid tribute on Wednesday to a French history teacher beheaded by an Islamist radical as a "quiet hero" dedicated to instilling the democratic values of the French Republic in his pupils. Samuel Paty's attacker, a teenager of Chechen origin, had wanted to avenge the teacher's use of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad in a class on freedom of expression for 13-year-olds. In a nationally televised memorial service presided over by Macron, Paty's coffin was carried into the courtyard of Sorbonne university in Paris to the soundtrack of the U2 song "One".
Two people were sent to hospital after a serious collision completely closed a section of the Sea-to-Sky Highway on Tuesday evening.The collision happened south of Strachan Point near Lions Bay, Squamish RCMP said.B.C. Emergency Health Services was called to the scene at around 5:45 p.m. PT. Two people were taken to hospital, one by ground ambulance and one by air ambulance, BCEHS spokesman Vincent Chou said.It's not yet clear how many vehicles were involved, but a photo tweeted by Squamish RCMP shows one vehicle upside down on the highway.Traffic was shut down in both directions as emergency crews worked.One southbound lane was reopened just before 8 p.m. PT, RCMP tweeted.The RCMP's Integrated Collision Analysis Reconstruction Service remained at the scene into the night.The highway had fully reopened by 2:30 a.m. PT Wednesday, according to DriveBC.
In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. What we are watching in Canada ... A dispute over the scope and composition of a House of Commons committee will come to a head today in a vote that could trigger a federal election in the midst of the second deadly wave of COVID-19.
Edmunds’ experts set out to determine what type of family vehicle is the most versatile. It narrowly wins in horsepower (305 horsepower) and torque (269 pound-feet) over the Palisade (291 horsepower and 262 pound-feet). Steering and handling will be best in either the Palisade or the Sienna.
China's Ant Group has won the final nod from the country's top securities watchdog for the registration of its Shanghai offering, the regulator said on Wednesday, clearing the last regulatory hurdle for its $35 billion dual-listing. Ant, the fintech company backed by Chinese e-commerce group Alibaba Group Holding <BABA.N>, plans to list simultaneously in Hong Kong and Shanghai in the coming weeks, sources have said. The listing could be the world's largest initial public offering, surpassing the record set by Saudi Aramco's $29.4 billion float last December.
Changes meant to improve how millions of dollars belonging to some of P.E.I.'s most vulnerable residents is managed have been implemented, several years after the auditor general first recommended them.The recommendations were made to maintenance enforcement in 2016 and to the public trustee in 2017."Unlike horseshoes and hand grenades, almost doesn't count with the auditor general," Clare Henderson, the director of family law and court services with P.E.I. Public Safety, told a legislative committee Tuesday."I can not tell you how pleased I am to sit here and tell you that we are going to be reporting 100 per cent compliance will all recommendations for all audits for all sections."The public trustee is responsible for looking after the assets of Islanders deemed incapable of making their own financial decisions. This includes people declared medically unfit who have no one else to manage their affairs, and in some cases, minors or people with disabilities awarded funds through court settlements and estates.In 2017, the office managed $9 million in assets that belong to about 300 Islanders.Auditor Gen. Jane MacAdam examined P.E.I.'s public trustee in 2017 and found the government was doing an inadequate job.Among other problems, MacAdam's reported files were disorganized and there was a lack of basic information in some cases, such as a complete listing of the client's assets, or in one case, the fact the client had been dead for more than a decade.The report recommended that client information should be readily available and transactions should always be recorded. It also said the office should provide adequate oversight for all clients.Enforcing child support paymentsIn 2016, MacAdam said new enforcement guidelines for child and spousal support were also needed on P.E.I., specifically for enforcing lack of payment.At the time, MacAdam reported some of the guidelines hadn't been updated since 2007.Now, Henderson said maintenance enforcement will review legislation so it can do more to enforce court-ordered payments for child support."There are significant tools available under the act currently, but we can always have more," she said.Henderson said one priority involves making sure once an order is filed, the only person who can withdraw it is the person receiving support."We have fundamental concerns always about circumstances, you know, where there might be power imbalances in relationships."Learning from othersHenderson said her office is also looking at what other jurisdictions are doing in Canada and taking into consideration what works elsewhere."My biggest interest presently is setting up a mechanism whereby we can authorize the impounding of vehicles where people have not paid their enforcement,' she said."We just want to add incentives that speak to people about taking appropriate action under their … orders."Overall, Henderson said she is proud of the job her staff has done to help make the necessary changes."I cannot stress enough that this work was not done in the past six months," said Henderson."This work has been work that we have been doing for the past three years."More from CBC P.E.I.
TANZANIA, Tanzania — The president of the International Crisis Group used a high-level U.N. Security Council meeting attended by China’s foreign minister Tuesday to appeal for the release of the think-tank ’s northeast Asia expert, Michael Kovrig, who has been held by Beijing for nearly two years as part of a diplomatic dispute with Canada. Robert Malley told the council at the end of his briefing on security in the Persian Gulf that the Crisis Group strives to be “an impartial conflict resolution organization” and its staff tries to understand the perspectives of all parties. “That’s what our colleague Michael Kovrig was doing in his work on China’s foreign policy,” Malley said. He said it wasn’t the time or place to discuss Kovrig’s case, “but I cannot conclude without appealing to the Chinese authorities, if they are listening, to understand the mission he was pursuing, end his almost two-year detention, allow him at long last to be reunited with his loved ones and continue his work toward a more peaceful world.” The participants at the virtual council meeting were shown on the screen, and when Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi heard China mentioned he looked up and paid attention. But he made no mention of Kovrig in his speech to the council. German Ambassador Christoph Heusgen did, echoing Malley’s appeal “to liberate Michael Kovrig.” “He is not only a member of the International Crisis Group, but a former colleague of ours, a former diplomat,” Heusgen said. Britain’s acting ambassador, Jonathan Allen, echoed Heusgen, saying Kovrig’s case “causes us deep concern.” On Oct. 10, China granted consular access to Kovrig and entrepreneur Michael Spavor, both Canadians, for the first time since January. The following day, the Canadian government expressed serious concern at their “arbitrary detention” and called for their immediate release. China’s Foreign ministry spokesperson, Zhao Lijian, denied on Oct. 12 that the two Canadians had been arbitrarily detained in response to Canada’s arrest of an executive of Chinese technology giant Huawei. He said Kovrig and Spavor were “suspected of engaging in activities that endanger China’s national security.” Despite its disavowals of any connection, Beijing has repeatedly tied the detentions to the arrest of Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer and the daughter of the company’s founder. The U.S. is seeking her extradition on fraud charges and the case is before Canadian courts. “What Canada did in the case of Meng Wanzhou was arbitrary detention,” Zhao said. Bilateral ties have suffered as China has upped its demands that Canada release Meng, who was detained during a stopover in Vancouver in December 2018 and is currently living in one of her mansions in that city while fighting extradition. Kovrig and Spavor were detained days later. Edith M. Lederer, The Associated Press
Four years after Donald Trump’s election reframed how many nations interacted with the United States, the way that the world’s foremost superpower moves forward after its presidential election stands to impact many geopolitical pressure points — whether the victor turns out to be Trump or his Democratic challenger, former Vice-President Joe Biden. From Iran to Cuba, from China to Israel, American involvement and influence on the international stage has evolved sharply since Trump took office in 2017.
The provincial government released numbers on Tuesday showing 121 new cases of the virus in schools across the province. As Erica Vella reports, some infectious disease experts believe the number will increase in the coming days and weeks.
The NGO says there is 'credible but disturbing evidence' of fatal shootings in Lagos involving #endSARS protesters against police brutalityView on euronews