Vancouver Police say they issued more than $17,000 in fines to 77 partygoers and arrested a 42-year-old man at a downtown condo penthouse that was allegedly operating as a "makeshift nightclub." Grace Ke reports.
Vancouver Police say they issued more than $17,000 in fines to 77 partygoers and arrested a 42-year-old man at a downtown condo penthouse that was allegedly operating as a "makeshift nightclub." Grace Ke reports.
Emma Corrin just won a Golden Globe for her portrayal of Princess Diana.
In the opening moments of a Golden Globes night even more chaotic and confounding than usual, co-host Tina Fey raised a theoretical question: “Could this whole night have been an email?” Only the next three hours would tell. Well, sure, it could have been an email. But then you wouldn't have had Chadwick Boseman’s eloquent widow, bringing many to tears as she explained how she could never be as eloquent as her late husband. Or Jane Fonda, sharply calling out Hollywood for its lack of diversity on a night when her very hosts were under fire for exactly that. Or Chloé Zhao, making history as the first woman of Asian descent to win best director (and the first woman since 1984.) Or 98-year-old Norman Lear, giving the simplest explanation for his longevity: never living or laughing alone. Or Jodie Foster kissing her wife joyfully, eight years after very tentatively coming out on the same telecast. Of course, there were the usual confounding results and baffling snubs, compounded here by some epic Zoom fails. But then we had the kids and the dogs. And they were adorable. Next year, can we still have the kids and the dogs, please? Some key moments of the first and hopefully last virtual Globes night: AN OVERDUE RECKONING The evening began under a cloud of embarrassing revelations about the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and its lack of inclusion, including the damaging fact that there are no Black members in the 87-person body. Fey and co-host Amy Poehler addressed it early: “Even with stupid things, inclusivity is important." Winners like Daniel Levy of “Schitt's Creek” and presenters like Sterling K. Brown referred to it. Jane Fonda made it a theme of her powerful speech accepting the Cecil B. DeMille award. And the HFPA made a hasty onstage pledge to change. “We recognize we have our own work to do,” said vice-president Helen Hoehne. “We must have Black journalists in our organization.” “I DON'T HAVE HIS WORDS” The best-actor award to Chadwick Boseman for “Ma Rainey's Black Bottom” had been expected. That did not dull the emotional impact of his victory. His widow, Taylor Simone Ledward, tearfully accepted in his honour, telling viewers that her husband, who died of colon cancer at 43 before the film was released, “would say something beautiful, something inspiring, something that would amplify that little voice inside of all of us that tells you you can. That tells you to keep going, that calls you back to what you are meant to be doing at this moment in history.” But, she said poignantly, “I don't have his words." Co-star Viola Davis could be seen weeping as Ledward spoke. She was not alone. PREDICTABLE ZOOM FAILS It was obvious there were going to be awkward Zoom fails. It started early, when the very first winner, Daniel Kaluuya for “Judas and the Black Messiah,” was on mute as he accepted his award, leaving presenter Laura Dern to apologize for technical difficulties. Thankfully, the problem was resolved in time for the actor to speak. Jason Sudeikis, whose charmingly rambling speech ("This is nuts!") and rumpled hoodie signalled he hadn't expected to win, finally realized he needed to “wrap this puppy up.” And winner Catherine O'Hara ("Schitt's Creek") had some perhaps unwelcome help from her husband, whose efforts to provide applause sounds and play-off music on his phone while she spoke lost something in translation, causing confusion on social media. Oh yes, and there were those conversations between nominees before commercials — did they know we heard them? KIDS AND PETS, STILL BRINGING JOY Still, the virtual acceptances from winners stuck at home had a huge silver lining: happy kids and cute pets. When Mark Ruffalo won for “I Know This Much is True,” two of his teens could not control their joy enough to stay out of the camera shot. Not to be outdone, the adorable young daughter of Lee Isaac Chung, writer-director of the Korean-American family drama “Minari,” sat in his lap and hugged him throughout his acceptance for best foreign language film. “She’s the reason I made this film,” said Chung. Winner Jodie Foster ("The Mauritanian") also had a family member in her lap: her dog. Also seen: Sarah Paulson's dog, and Emma Corrin's cat. LOVE FOR BORAT, SNUB FOR BAKALOVA ... AND EXPOSURE FOR GIULIANI Bulgarian actress Maria Bakalova, breakout star of Amazon’s “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm,” had been widely expected to win, but lost out to Rosamund Pike ("I Care a Lot") who saluted Bakalova's bravery. In her movie, Pike said, “I had to swim up from a sinking car. I think I still would rather do that than have been in a room with Rudy Giuliani.” The former New York mayor's infamous cameo was also the butt of jokes from “Borat” star Sacha Baron Cohen, who called Giuliani “a fresh new talent who came from nowhere and turned out to be a comedy genius ... I mean, who could get more laughs from one unzipping?” Baron Cohen, who won for best actor in a comedy, also joked that Donald Trump was “contesting the result” of his win. A FIERY FONDA Did you expect anything less from Fonda? In her memorable DeMille award speech, the multiple Globe winner extolled the virtues of cinematic storytelling — “stories can change our hearts and our minds” — then pivoted to admonishing Hollywood. “There's a story we’ve been afraid to see and hear about ourselves,” she said, “a story about which voices we respect and elevate and which we tune out: a story about who’s offered a seat at the table and who’s kept out of the rooms where decisions are made.” She said the arts should not merely keep step with society, but lead the way. “Let's be leaders,” she said. ZHAO MAKES HISTORY When Zhao won best director for her haunting and elegant “Nomadland,” she was the first Asian American woman ever to win that award. But that wasn't the only way she made history: it was the first directing Globe for a woman in nearly 40 years, since Barbra Streisand won for “Yentl." Her film, a look at itinerant Americans, “at its core for me is a pilgrimage through grief and healing,” Zhao said. “For everyone who has gone through this difficult and beautiful journey at some point in their lives, we don’t say goodbye, we say: See you down the road.” With Zhao's win, the road widens for other female directors. ___ This story has been corrected to show that Norman Lear is 98, not 99. Jocelyn Noveck, The Associated Press
As COVID-19 vaccine supplies ramp up across the country, most provinces and territories have released details of who can expect to receive a shot in the coming weeks. Here's a list of their plans to date: Newfoundland and Labrador The province says it is in Phase 1 of its vaccine rollout. Health-care workers on the front lines of the pandemic, staff at long-term care homes, people of "advanced age" and adults in remote or isolated Indigenous communities have priority. Chief medical health officer Dr. Janice Fitzgerald has said Phase 2 will begin in April if vaccine supply remains steady. The second phase prioritizes adults over 60 years old, beginning with those over 80, as well as Indigenous adults, first responders, rotational workers and adults in marginalized populations, such as those experiencing homelessness. Adults between 16 and 59 years old will be vaccinated in the third phase of the rollout, and Fitzgerald has said she expects that to begin this summer. --- Nova Scotia Health officials in Nova Scotia announced Tuesday that vaccination rollout plans for the month included the province's first pharmacy clinics. Prototype pharmacy clinics will launch in Halifax and Shelburne on March 9, Port Hawkesbury on March 16 and Springhill on March 23. Nova Scotia plans to have vaccine available to at least 75 per cent of the population by the end of September 2021. --- Prince Edward Island Health officials in Prince Edward Island say they will shift their focus to getting a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine to all adults by July 1, even if it means delaying the second shot for some. Chief medical officer Heather Morrison has said people over the age of 80 will get a second dose based on their existing appointments. Going forward, she said, other residents will get a longer interval between their first and second doses, but she didn’t specific how long that will be. --- New Brunswick The province is also focusing on vaccinating those living in long-term care homes, health-care workers with direct patient contact, adults in First Nations communities and older New Brunswickers in the first phase, which lasts until at least March. The next phase is scheduled to begin in the spring and includes residents and staff of communal settings, other health-care workers including pharmacists, first responders and critical infrastructure employees. The government website says once the vaccine supply is continuous and in large enough quantities, the entire population will be offered the shots. --- Quebec Quebec started vaccinating older seniors Monday, after a first phase that focused largely on health-care workers, remote communities and long-term care. In Montreal, mass vaccine sites including the Olympic Stadium opened their doors to the public as the province began inoculating seniors who live in the hard-hit city. The government announced last week it would begin booking appointments for those aged 85 and up across the province, but that age limit has since dropped to 70 in some regions, including Montreal. Quebec announced Tuesday it had reached a deal with pharmacies that will allow them to start administering COVID-19 vaccines by mid-March. Health Minister Christian Dube said about 350 pharmacies in the Montreal area will start taking appointments by March 15 for people as young as 70. The program will eventually expand to more than 1,400 pharmacies across the province that will administer about two million doses. The Montreal region is being prioritized in part because of the presence of more contagious variants, such as the one first identified in the United Kingdom, Dube has said. --- Ontario The province began vaccinating people with the highest priority, including those in long-term care, high-risk retirement home residents, certain classes of health-care workers and people who live in congregate care settings. Several regions in Ontario moved ahead Monday with their plans to vaccinate the general public, while others used their own systems to allow residents aged 80 and older to schedule appointments. Toronto also began vaccinating members of its police force Monday after the province identified front-line officers as a priority group. Constables and sergeants who respond to emergency calls where medical assistance may be required are now included in the ongoing first phase of Ontario's vaccine rollout, a spokeswoman for the force said. A day earlier, Toronto said the province expanded the first phase of its vaccination drive to include residents experiencing homelessness. The provincial government has said it aims to begin vaccinating Ontarians aged 80 and older starting the week of March 15, the same day it plans to launch its vaccine booking system, which will offer a service desk and online portal. It has said the vaccine rollout will look different in each of its 34 public health units. When asked about the lack of provincewide cohesion, Health Minister Christine Elliott said that public health units know their regions best and that's why they have been given responsibility to set the pace locally. She also says the province will soon share an updated vaccine plan that factors in expected shipments of the newly approved Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. The province will do that after getting guidance from the federal government on potentially extending the time between first and second doses, like B.C. is doing, of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines to four months, Elliott says She also says Ontario seniors won't receive the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine since there's limited data on its effectiveness in older populations. --- Manitoba Manitoba is starting to vaccinate people in the general population. Appointments are now available for most people aged 94 and up, or 74 and up for First Nations people. Until now, vaccines have been directed to certain groups such as health-care workers and people in personal care homes. Health officials plan to reduce the age minimum, bit by bit, over the coming months. Dr. Joss Reimer, medical lead of the province's vaccine task force, has said inoculations could be open to all adults in the province by August if supplies are steady. --- Saskatchewan The province is still in the first phase of its vaccination rollout, which reserves doses for long-term care residents and staff, health-care workers at elevated risk of COVID-19 exposure, seniors over the age of 70 and anyone 50 or older living in a remote area. In all, nearly 400,000 doses are required to finish this stage. The next phase will be focused on vaccinating the general population by age. It hopes to begin its mass vaccination campaign by April, but there if there isn’t enough supply that could be pushed back to June. Saskatchewan will begin immunizing the general population in 10-year increments, starting with those 60 to 69. Also included in this age group will be people living in emergency shelters, individuals with intellectual disabilities in care homes and people who are medically vulnerable. Police, corrections staff and teachers are among the front-line workers not prioritized for early access to shots. The government says supply is scarce. The province said this week that it may follow British Columbia's lead in delaying a second dose of COVID-19 vaccine to speed up immunizations. The government says it hopes a national committee that provides guidance on immunizations will support waiting up to four months to give people a second dose. If that happens, the province could speed up how soon residents get their first shot. --- Alberta Alberta is now offering vaccines to anyone born in 1946 or earlier, a group representing some 230,000 people. Appointments are being offered through an online portal and the 811 Health Link phone line. Shots are also being offered to this cohort at more than 100 pharmacies in Calgary, Red Deer and Edmonton starting in early March and the government has said there are also plans to include doctors’ offices. Health Minister Tyler Shandro has said all eligible seniors should have their first shots by the end of March. But he said Monday that the province will not give Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine to anyone over the age of 65 after the National Advisory Committee on Immunization expressed concerned there is limited data on how well it will work in older populations. The first phase of the vaccine rollout also included anyone over 65 who lives in a First Nations or Metis community, various front-line health care workers, paramedics and emergency medical responders. Phase 2 of the rollout, to begin in April, is to start with those 65 and up, Indigenous people older than 50 and staff and residents of licensed supportive living seniors’ facilities not previously included. --- British Columbia British Columbia will extend the time between the first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccines to four months so all adults could get their initial shot by the end of July. Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says evidence from the province and around the world shows protection of at least 90 per cent from the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines. The province launched the second phase of its immunization campaign Monday and health authorities will begin contacting residents and staff of independent living centres, those living in seniors' supportive housing as well as homecare support clients and staff. Seniors aged 90 and up can call to make their appointment starting next Monday, followed a week later by those aged 85 and over, and a week after that by those 80 and up. Henry says the approval of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine means some people will get their first shot sooner than planned. She says B.C. will focus its rollout of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine among essential workers, first responders and younger people with more social interactions who would have to wait longer to receive their first doses of the Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines. It's now possible that all adults could get their first shot by July, Henry says. --- Nunavut The territory says it expects enough vaccines for 75 per cent of its population over the age of 18. After a COVID-19 vaccine is administered, patients will be tracked to ensure they are properly notified to receive their second dose. Nunavut's priority populations are being vaccinated first. They include residents of shelters, people ages 60 years and up, staff and inmates and correctional facilities, first responders and front-line health-care staff. --- Northwest Territories The Northwest Territories its priority groups — such as people over 60, front-line health workers and those living in remote communities — are being vaccinated The territory says it expects to vaccine the rest of its adult population starting this month. --- Yukon Yukon says it will receive enough vaccine to immunize 75 per cent of its adult population by the end of March. Priority for vaccinations has been given to residents and staff in long-term care homes, group homes and shelters, as well as health-care workers and personal support workers. People over the age of 80 who are not living in long-term care, and those living in rural and remote communities, including Indigenous Peoples, are also on the priority list for shots. --- This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 3, 2021. The Canadian Press
TURIN, Italy — Álvaro Morata made a scoring return to set Juventus on its way to a 3-0 win over Spezia on Tuesday and boost its faltering title defence. Fellow substitute Federico Bernardeschi set up Morata moments after they had both come off the bench. Bernardeschi then provided another assist for Federico Chiesa, nine minutes later. Cristiano Ronaldo sealed the match late on with his 20th goal of the season. He is the first player in Europe's top five leagues to reach that figure for the 12th successive season. Juventus goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny saved a stoppage-time penalty from Andrey Galabinov after Emmanuel Gyasi had been tripped by Merih Demiral. Juventus moved up to third, seven points below league leader Inter Milan and three below AC Milan. Spezia remained seven points above the relegation zone. Juventus needed a win to boost its bid for a record-extending 10th consecutive Serie A title, after drawing 1-1 at Hellas Verona last weekend. It was still without Leonardo Bonucci, Giorgio Chiellini, Juan Cuadrado, Arthur and Paulo Dybala, who were all injured, but Morata recovered enough from sickness for a place on the bench. Spezia looked the more dangerous side in the first half, although Ronaldo hit the post three minutes from halftime. Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo made a double change in the 61st minute, bringing on Morata and Bernardeschi for Weston McKennie and Gianluca Frabotta. That had an immediate effect as Bernardeschi ran onto a ball over the top and rolled across from the left for Morata to tap in at the near post, with his first touch of the match. The goal was initially ruled out for offside on Bernardeschi but awarded on video review. Juventus doubled its lead following another Bernardeschi cross from the left. Chiesa’s initial shot was brilliantly parried by Spezia goalkeeper Ivan Provedel from close range, but the Juventus forward fired home the rebound. Spezia was still seeking a way back into the match but Ronaldo dashed the visitor's faint hopes when he drilled in a through ball from Rodrigo Bentancur, a minute from time. ___ More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports The Associated Press
VANCOUVER — The federal government has provided nearly $3.5 million in funding for five vending machines that will dispense medical-grade opioids in British Columbia, Ontario and Nova Scotia, in order to prevent overdoses. Darren Fisher, parliamentary secretary to Health Minister Patty Hajdu, says two machines are located in Vancouver, one is in Victoria and one each are in London, Ont., and Dartmouth, N.S. The machines, called MySafe, are similar to ATMs and allow drug users at risk of overdose to get hydromorphone pills dispensed to them after their palm has been scanned. Fisher says MySafe allows participants to access a safer drug without fear, shame and stigma, and without contact with anyone, which is all the more essential during the pandemic. Overdose deaths have spiked during pandemic with many people using alone and a more toxic illicit drug supply. Drug users are assessed by a doctor and a baseline urine sample is collected before they can access safer drugs through the MySafe machines, which are bolted to the floor. This is a corrected story. A previous version said $5.6 million in funding. This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 2, 2021. The Canadian Press
TORONTO — Restricting towing zones on some highways and licensing tow truck drivers are some of the measures Ontario will be introducing later this year in its efforts to crack down on an industry rocked by allegations of violent turf wars.Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney announced a pilot project on Tuesday that she said would cut down on dangerous practices like so-called "accident chasing," where multiple tow trucks race to be the first to a crash site to get business.Under the new rules, some of the 400 series highways will have restricted towing zones, which means only a single company can operate within that zone. Mulroney said the "tow zones" are the first step towards introducing broader regulation in the sector, which could later include licensing tow truck drivers."Ending the accident-chasing regime means people can take comfort in knowing that a reputable tow operator will get there to help them get to a safe place," she said. "It will ensure that tow operators who arrive on the scene in the tow zones will be equipped to handle any situation and get the scene cleared quickly and safely."Mulroney said the two-year project will also establish standard prices for customers and target times for response and to clear a crash site.The towing industry has been rocked by allegations of violent turf wars between organized criminal groups within the sector.Last summer, Premier Doug Ford announced Ontario was forming a task force to examine both enforcement and safety in response to an increase in violence and crime associated with the towing sector.Solicitor Genera Sylvia Jones said the zones will be accompanied by the establishment of a new joint task force to investigate criminal activity within the tow businesses involving the Ontario Provincial Police and municipal police services."Tow truck drivers are a vital part of keeping Ontario moving," she said. "But they are operating in an industry that lacks oversight structure, and where too many criminals are making their own rules."Police in the Greater Toronto Area have alleged that competition for control of the towing market has led to murders, attempted murders, assaults, arsons and property damage.In recent months, four OPP officers have been charged after a two-year long probe into alleged crimes in the tow truck industry. OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique said Tuesday that the force has conducted three "complex, major" investigations into the sector over the last year alone, and more resources would be dedicated to those probes."You have a commitment from the police leaders that are part of this joint force operation that any indications of corruption will be dealt with with the same level of seriousness that you have seen over the last 12 months," he said. "We are committed to rooting it out, and we'll accept nothing less."NDP Leader Andrea Horwath accused the government of dragging its feet when it comes to responding to the escalating violence in the towing industry."People's livelihoods, and their lives, have been lost," she said. "They've been taking their sweet time. ... when it's about saving people's lives and cleaning up an industry."This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 2, 2021. Shawn Jeffords, The Canadian Press
OTTAWA — The federal government is telling an appeal court it had to provide U.S. authorities with customer information from Canadian banks to avoid possibly "catastrophic effects" on Canada's economy. The U.S. Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, known as FATCA, requires banks and other institutions in countries outside the United States to report information about accounts held by U.S. individuals, including Canadians with dual citizenship. Among the information from Canada being shared with the U.S. are the names and addresses of account holders, account numbers, account balances, and details such as interest, dividends and other income. In a newly filed submission to the Federal Court of Appeal, the Canadian government says failure to comply would have had serious effects on Canada's financial sector, its customers and the broader economy. Two U.S.-born women who now live in Canada, Gwendolyn Louise Deegan and Kazia Highton, challenged the constitutionality of Canadian provisions implementing the 2014 agreement between the countries that makes the information-sharing possible. The two unsuccessfully argued in Federal Court that the provisions breach the Charter of Rights guarantee preventing unreasonable seizure, and they now want the Court of Appeal to overturn the ruling. This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 2, 2021. The Canadian Press
NEW YORK — Human remains of early New Yorkers that were discovered during construction in and around Washington Square Park were reinterred inside the park on Tuesday, New York City officials announced. The remains, uncovered during construction between 2008 and 2017, were reburied with assistance from the city Landmarks Preservation Commission and Brooklyn's historic Green-Wood Cemetery, Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver said. "Today we honour these individuals and acknowledge Washington Square Park’s history as a final resting place for thousands of early New Yorkers,” Silver said. “We are so grateful to our colleagues at Green-Wood Cemetery and the Landmarks Preservation Commission for their expertise and guidance on this important project.” Sarah Carroll, chair of the landmarks panel, thanked the Parks Department "for ensuring that archaeology was appropriately completed, and the human remains were respectfully treated throughout the process.” Washington Square Park in Manhattan's Greenwich Village neighbourhood was constructed in the 1850s at the site of a former potter’s field. Thousands of people were buried there between 1797 and 1825, officials said. The partial remains that were reinterred on Tuesday were placed in a wooden box and buried in a planting bed with an engraved paving stone marking the spot, Parks Department officials said. Because the remains were fragmentary, forensic analysis did not yield details about the individuals, the officials said. The Associated Press
Whether you claim to be an expert at chess or just want to learn the game, there will soon be a spot for you at the Astor Theatre Society Chess Club. John Simmonds, chair of the Astor Theatre Society and lifelong chess player, is leading the charge in the formation of the club. “I’ve always enjoyed the game and gave it up for a number of years,” he said. “As I got back into activities with the Astor and we took over the Town Hall Arts and Culture Centre, we had these rooms available. I had the idea of starting a chess club and using one of the rooms for some time, but COVID-19 happened,” he said. When restrictions started easing up a bit, he believed it was a good time to get something started. Simmonds was hoping to have the club’s first get-together March 11 at 3:30 p.m. to gauge interest in it. He hopes to expand on that by making two time slots available, depending on interest — 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. for youth and 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. for adults. Plans are to meet each Thursday and times may be adjusted depending on the interest shown. There is no charge to drop in and play. “My feeling is that if you build it, they will come. I think there are a sufficient number of people in Liverpool who are either interested in learning the game or people that have played and would like a formal venue in which to play, learn and develop,” said Simmonds. Those interested in joining the club can contact the Astor Theatre box office during office hours at 902-354-5250 or by email: email@example.com. Kevin McBain, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, LighthouseNOW Progress Bulletin
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says the decision to delay second doses of COVID-19 vaccine by four months is based on scientific evidence combined with real-world data from the province’s immunization campaign that began in late December.
“I took some heat in my first term,” says Town of Minto Mayor George Bridge. “But I don’t any more.” The push-back was from some who questioned the town putting money into programs like CIP that offer grants to support private investors improving property. Southgate Township just approved its Community Improvement Plan, so there may be lessons in the experience from the Town of Minto. Minto now has three people in its economic development department. And yes, that’s for a municipality of 9,000 people, the Minto mayor said, reciting the numbers like someone who has heard some objections before. “What you really have to stress to your council and your communities is you can’t expect people to invest in these properties without an incentive,” he said in an interview with the Herald last fall. For every dollar the municipality has put in, the private sector investment now is more than four dollars. So how does he answer those who don’t see a role for municipalities in business? Well, actually, municipalities always have policies that affect business, he said. What’s new is the possibility under provincial rules that a township, city or county can provide legal incentives to businesses to invest. They do it through a CIP – a Community Improvement Plan. And that coincides with a new vision of economic development – “we’re not chasing smoke stacks any more,” Mayor Bridge told the Herald in an interview late last year. COMMUNITY GETS ON BOARD He listed a few other actions that helped forge the path to where they are today. Downtowns in Clifford, Harriston and Palmerston look better, more buildings are occupied, including some of the most deteriorated, and there is a team of residents in each town spearheading project such as projects like murals and benches. Each town has a community group (revitalization committee) with one council member assigned to it. The group is given a $5,000 budget each year by the municipality. A big factor in the success of the group is that those economic development staff members take care of the administration jobs like secretarial and financial duties. Those are the jobs no one can fill, and if you say yes, you’re in the job for 20 years, the mayor said. The municipality also brought in people from an Ontario organization called Small Town Rising, who helped with the committees, and with helping the communities identify their “brand.” “The Town’s not going to drive it,” he said, “the people are going to drive it.” There is a lot of social media posting of the downtown improvements and decorations. “That’s coming from the people, not me. It’s totally amazing what they’ve done.” There are now outside speakers in the downtown playing the local radio station, which will carry ads and promotions of local events. THE FIRST MINTO CIP A CIP is a toolbox of different approaches to use public money to encourage investment toward community goals – downtown improvement, re-use of industrial sites, attainable housing and ultimately growth that aligns with local priorities. The first Minto Community Improvement Plan started more than a decade ago, in 2008. At first, it provided incentive grants only for storefront (facade) and signage improvements. This created a catalyst that led to success in filling most buildings except those that had major issues. NEXT STEPS At that point, the Town recognized they needed a larger incentive to “really move the needle for our downtowns,” in the words of economic development manager Belinda Wick-Graham. Minto then started offering a structural grant of up to $40,000. Minto has budgeted $60,000 annually for the last several years. The grants are offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. That resulted in at least five significant buildings being “massively transformed” - with a big investment by the owner. “These have created new apartments, allowed new businesses to open, created new jobs, and overall have added vibrancy to our downtowns again,” Belinda Wick-Graham wrote in response to an inquiry from the Herald. “I could go on all day about how this program has transformed our communities.” MEASURING THE CHANGE Across the province, a common way of assessing the program is by the ratio of municipal investment to private investment. The municipality uses tax dollars as in incentive to partner with the private sector to create more activity, first through construction, later in increased tax assessments and local business start-ups. The Town of Minto also looks at the number of new businesses, number of jobs, number of desperately-needed apartments and the assessment increase. Minto’s commercial assessment increased from 2008 by over 9 percent, and since 2010 more than $2.4 million in commercial construction value was added to the benefit of the community. PICTURING THE CHANGE Those involved on the municipal side, like the Mayor and staff talk about the impact on community pride, and the increased attraction to consumers and potential investors. A picture speaks a thousand words in telling the story of the transformation and the improvement so the department takes before and after photos to show the physical changes. DON’T JUST PASS THE PLAN, PROMOTE IT The Town of Minto makes sure local realtors know about it as it’s an incentive to someone looking to invest in property. Existing property owners and businesses are made aware of it Keeping the plan fresh is important, too. Minto has added grants to support outdoor patios or public art in downtowns, and grants to support projects to plant more trees as consistent with regulations, either to improve urban areas or reduce snow drift in rural areas. M.T. Fernandes, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Dundalk Herald
Des intervenants du milieu culturel local, des citoyens et la société d’histoire régionale ont multiplié les sorties publiques depuis l’annonce de la Ville de Granby de mettre aux enchères une murale de St-Patrick signée Alfred Pellan. La mobilisation n’a cependant eu aucun effet sur la position du maire Pascal Bonin. Lors de la réunion mensuelle du conseil municipal, lundi soir, plusieurs questions ont été adressées au maire au sujet du sort réservé à la mosaïque datant de 1958. L’œuvre d’art ornant la façade du 142, rue Dufferin devait à l’origine être retirée dans le but d’être mise en valeur dans un autre lieu public en raison de la démolition de l’immeuble. Le conseil municipal a toutefois changé d’avis après avoir reçu un rapport d’expertise évaluant l’opération de retrait et de restauration à quelque 160 000 $. C’est la présence d’amiante dans les murs de cette ancienne école primaire accueillant la communauté irlandaise de Granby qui expliquerait le coût élevé de la démarche. Dans le camp de ceux qui se portent à la défense de l’œuvre, décrite comme un objet patrimonial, c’est l’absence de consultation du public qui fâche. «Nous proposons que, dans un premier temps, la murale d’Alfred Pellan soit retirée de la façade de l’édifice de la MRC et qu’elle soit entreposée en lieu sûr. Dans un deuxième temps, la Ville devrait mettre sur pied un comité regroupant des élu(e)s et des citoyen(ne)s qui détermineront ensemble la meilleure façon d’assurer la préservation de ce bien patrimonial», a suggéré le président du conseil d’administration de la Société d’histoire de la Haute-Yamaska (SHHY), Maxime Gilbert, dans une question écrite transmise au conseil en raison de la procédure imposée en temps de pandémie. Dans sa missive au conseil, M. Gilbert a souligné que «la précipitation serait bien mauvaise conseillère» et il a rappelé aux élus que la communauté regrette encore aujourd’hui la destruction d’autres éléments de valeur patrimoniale dans le passé. La semaine dernière, un autre groupe s’est manifesté, soit le comité «Ma ville, mon patrimoine» qui réunit des artisans du milieu culturel local. Ils ont interpellé les citoyens par l’entremise des réseaux sociaux en leur demandant d’écrire des courriels aux élus. Ils ont même préparé un modèle de lettre à personnaliser. «Sauver des édifices, des œuvres d’art et des sculptures, ce n’est pas juste pour les autres ailleurs au Québec. Nous pouvons ensemble demander à notre conseil municipal de revenir sur cette décision», peut-on lire dans la publication sur Facebook du comité. Face à cette réaction citoyenne, le maire de Granby, Pascal Bonin, a réagi en début de réunion du conseil avec l’intention de clore le débat. «Il y a des gens qui nous demandent d'enlever l'oeuvre et d'attendre ensuite voir ce qu'on va en faire. Ça fait partie intégrante de la problématique. C'est-à-dire qu'on ne peut pas enlever l'oeuvre à cause de l'amiante qui se trouve derrière dans l'édifice. Ce n'est pas possible de retirer l'oeuvre aussi simplement. Si ça avait été le cas, ça fait longtemps qu'on l'aurait fait», a-t-il répondu en insistant sur la qualité du rapport remis aux élus. «On peut se faire reprocher de ne pas avoir consulté, mais au final, c'est un dossier qui a été bien monté au conseil. Il n'y a rien de nouveau à part la divergence d'opinions», a-t-il poursuivi, en rejetant les attaques selon lesquelles Granby ne se soucie pas de son patrimoine. Le maire a rappelé qu’un projet de dix millions de dollars vient d’être réalisé pour préserver l’église Notre-Dame, la plus vieille église catholique de la municipalité. À la suite de la réponse du maire Bonin, le comité «Ma ville, mon patrimoine» a réagi sur sa page Facebook en reprochant au conseil municipal de faire «la sourde oreille aux citoyens». Les membres déplorent un manque d’ouverture aux «arguments valables» apportés par les citoyens. Ugo Giguère, Initiative de journalisme local, La Presse Canadienne
The Biden administration sanctioned seven mid- and senior-level Russian officials on Tuesday, along with more than a dozen businesses and other entities, over a nearly fatal nerve-agent attack on opposition leader Alexei Navalny and his subsequent jailing. The measures, emphasizing the use of the Russian nerve agent as a banned chemical weapon, marked the Biden administration's first sanctions against associates of President Vladimir Putin. The Russian leader was an intimate and favourite of President Donald Trump even amid covert Russian hacking and social media campaigns aimed at destabilizing the U.S. The government officials included at least four whom Navalny's supporters had directly asked the West to penalize, saying they were most involved in targeting him and other dissidents and journalists. However, the U.S. list did not include any of Russia's most powerful businesspeople and bankers, oligarchs whom Navalny has long said the West would have to sanction to get the attention of Putin. Tuesday's step “was not meant to be a silver bullet or an end date to what has been a difficult relationship with Russia,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said. “We expect the relationship to continue to be a challenge. We’re prepared for that.” The Biden administration also announced sanctions under the U.S. Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act for businesses and other enterprises, most of which it said were involved in the production of biological and chemical agents. The U.S. intelligence community concluded with high confidence that Russia's Federal Security Service used the Russian nerve agent Novichok on Navalny last August, a senior administration official said. Russia critic Bill Browder, a London-based investor, tweeted that he feared the new U.S. sanctions would be “way too little and not touch Putin’s billionaire cronies.” Rep. Adam Schiff, a California Democrat and chair of the House Intelligence Committee, called the U.S. move overdue. Working with U.S. allies, “we must use an array of tools, including sanctions, to meaningfully deter, repel, and punish Moscow’s transgressions,” Schiff said in a statement. The Biden administration has pledged to confront Putin in alleged attacks on Russian opposition figures and in alleged malign actions abroad, including the hacking of U.S. government agencies and U.S. businesses. Trump spoke admiringly of Putin and resisted criticism of Putin's government. That included dismissing U.S. intelligence findings that Russia had backed Trump in its covert campaign to interfere with the 2016 presidential election. The administration co-ordinated the sanctions with the European Union, which added to its own sanctions Tuesday over the attack on Navalny. The U.S. and European shared concerns about “Russia’s deepening authoritarianism,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said. “The U.S. government has exercised its authorities to send a clear signal that Russia’s use of chemical weapons and abuse of human rights have severe consequences,” Blinken said in a statement. The individuals sanctioned by the U.S. included the head of Russia's Federal Security Service, the head of prisons, Kremlin and defence figures, and Russia's prosecutor general. The Biden administration had forecast for weeks actions against Russia. Besides the Navalny sanctions, officials have said the administration plans to respond soon to the massive Russian hack of federal government agencies and private corporations that laid bare vulnerabilities in the cyber supply chain and exposed potentially sensitive secrets to elite Kremlin spies. Navalny, 44, was sickened by the Russian nerve agent in an attack that the United States and others linked to Putin’s security services. After months of recuperation in Germany, Navalny flew home to Moscow in January and was arrested on arrival for an alleged parole violation. His detention sparked street protests across Russia. Police arrested thousands of demonstrators. Authorities have transferred the opposition leader to a penal colony to begin serving a sentence, after what rights groups said was a show trial. Long a target in Russian government attempts to shut down dissent, Navalny has repeatedly appealed to the West to start targeting the most powerful business and financial oligarchs of his country, saying only then would Russian leaders take international sanctions seriously. The U.S. government has previously censured behaviour by Russia that American officials saw as having violated international norms. In 2016, for instance, the Obama administration responded to interference by the Kremlin in the presidential election by expelling dozens of Russian diplomats who officials said were actually spies and by shuttering two Russian compounds in Maryland and New York. Trump's administration also took a handful of actions adverse to Moscow, including through the closure of Russian consulates on the West Coast and the suspension of a nuclear arms treaty. ___ Associated Press writers Eric Tucker and Aamer Madhani in Washington and Lorne Cook in Brussels contributed to this report. Ellen Knickmeyer, The Associated Press
MADRID — Spanish league president Javier Tebas is not expecting any blockbuster signings in the next transfer window as Spanish clubs continue to struggle financially because of the coronavirus pandemic. There has been talk of Real Madrid making a move to try to sign in Kylian Mbappé from Paris Saint-Germain or Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund, but Tebas said such transfers are unlikely to happen at this point. “Considering the numbers people are talking about, I see it as complicated,” Tebas said on Tuesday. “Real Madrid, which is the club most linked with Mbappé… I think it would probably wait (for the end of his contract) to sign him, that’s the reality.” He said only clubs such as PSG and Manchester City, which Tebas often accuses of breaking financial fair play rules, could afford these types of players. “I don’t see other teams making these signing unless they use some form of financial trickery,” he said. Tebas said the Spanish league should not be afraid of losing some of its top players, either — even Lionel Messi if he decides to leave Barcelona at the end of his contract this season. “We always want to have the best players,” Tebas said. “It’s obvious that it can hurt us if we lose (Messi), but I believe we are ready for these circumstances. Neymar left us and Cristiano Ronaldo left us and we still did well. If the bids for audiovisual rights are used as a thermometer, we could still do very well despite the departure of these players.” Tebas said he hopes to have fans back in Spanish stadiums by the end of the season but it will depend on how the coronavirus pandemic progresses in the country. “I believe we still have to go through March and April before we can start to think about having fans at the end of the season, at least in the last games,” he said. Tebas said Barcelona should be able to start overcoming its crisis after it elects a president on Sunday, and that Real Betis has until September to adjust to the league's salary cap. New caps were announced on Tuesday, with most clubs seeing their caps reduced with the exception of Real Madrid, Celta Vigo, Granada and Huesca. ___ More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports ___ Tales Azzoni on Twitter: http://twitter.com/tazzoni Tales Azzoni, The Associated Press
As cases of coronavirus variants continue to rise in Montreal, the city will remain the focus of Quebec's mass vaccination campaign. At a news conference Tuesday afternoon, Health Minister Christian Dubé said vaccines are the province's best tool in preventing a variant, first detected in the United Kingdom and believed to be more contagious, from taking hold elsewhere in the province. He said the plateau of new cases seen across Quebec could be the "calm before the storm," if the growing number of variant cases detected in Montreal is any indication. Last week, variants accounted for about 10 per cent of new cases in Montreal. Now, they're hovering at around 12 to 15 per cent. Dubé announced that eligible Quebecers will soon be able to book appointments to get a vaccine from their local pharmacy. Starting the week of March 15, he said as many as 350 pharmacies in Montreal will be taking appointments. The province has reached an agreement with about 1,400 pharmacists across the province to administer vaccines — with the goal of 2 million doses given by the end of July in pharmacies. "[Pharmacists] are very close to their patients and the level of trust is there," said Nirvishi Jawaheer, the owner of a pharmacy in Parc-Extension and vice-president of the Fédération des Pharmaciens du Québec. "We are very accessible, we're open long hours and we have the competency for taking care of patients." The federation says the vaccines will be offered free of charge. "We must be prudent of these variants," said Dr. Horacio Arruda, the province's director of public health. He said more infectious variants, such as the B.1.1.7 strain, could cause a new spike infections. Arruda says they are paying close attention to the spread of variants as they decide whether to loosen COVID-19 restrictions. An update on the province's bans on gatherings and other activities is expected Wednesday afternoon. Lessons learned from Day 1 of mass vaccinations Daniel Paré, who is in charge of Quebec's vaccination campaign, said much was learned on Monday, when more than 16,000 vaccines were administered — many at mass vaccination sites including Montreal's Olympic Stadium, the Palais des congrès and shopping malls. "We are really pleased that people accept to be vaccinated," Paré said. He said the government is working on increasing the capacity of its phone system and encouraged Quebecers to book appointments online or have a family member help them do so. He also said that more chairs are being provided today for the elderly people waiting in line and that additional staff are being deployed to answer questions when people arrive for their appointment. Dubé asked Quebecers to show up only five to 10 minutes before their appointment, accompanied by a maximum of one caregiver, to reduce the number of people waiting in line at one time. In Montreal and Laval, those aged 70 and older can now book an appointment to get their shot. As the province receives more vaccines, Paré said more appointment slots will open up. In the Montérégie, just south of Montreal, vaccines are only available to those aged 80 and older. But the priority, Dubé said, is completing vaccinations at the many private seniors' homes in that region before making the shot available to those under 80.
Nova Scotia's police watchdog has cleared the two RCMP officers who shot at a fire hall in Onslow, N.S., during the hunt for an active gunman last April, saying the Mounties had reasonable grounds to believe a man outside the hall, which was being used as a shelter, was the killer. The 10-month investigation by the Serious Incident Response Team (SIRT) found the two officers — who drove up to the Onslow Belmont Fire Brigade Hall in an unmarked vehicle — had yelled "Police!" and "Show your hands!" at a man who was dressed in a safety vest similar to one worn by the suspect they sought. The agency determined they opened fire because the civilian ducked behind a police cruiser and ran inside the hall. "The investigation found that based on everything the officers had seen and heard since coming on duty and what they had observed at the time, they had reasonable grounds to believe that the male was the killer and someone who would continue his killing rampage," SIRT director Felix Cacchione said in a press release. "They discharged their weapons in order to prevent further deaths or serious injuries." The watchdog agency concluded that no criminal offences were committed and there were no grounds for criminal charges. That morning, April 19, 2020, police in Nova Scotia were searching for a gunman travelling between communities shooting strangers while disguised as an RCMP officer. It would end up being the deadliest mass shooting in Canadian history. Thirteen hours after it began in nearby Portapique, 22 people were dead. But when shots rang out at the fire hall, the man responsible for those deaths wasn't there. Two Mounties fired at a bystander who was close to the hall near a parked RCMP cruiser, in which another Mountie sat. The hall had been opened as a safe gathering place for people who couldn't return home to Portapique and the RCMP officer was stationed there to keep them safe. When the gunfire started, the fire brigade's chief and deputy chief were inside with a man whose family member was killed the night before. At the same time the two officers were firing — 10:21 a.m. AT — Nova Scotia RCMP had tweeted that the gunman was "currently in the Central Onslow Debert area." Two firefighters inside the hall looked to Twitter for information and assumed the actual gunman was firing in their direction. For an hour, they waited for more information, crouched behind tables inside the hall, terrified. No one inside or outside the hall was hurt, but bullets peppered the hall's siding over a distance of several metres. The shots went through one of the big bay doors and punctured a fire truck's windshield, fender and engine. Shots also pierced an electronic welcome sign close to the road, more than 60 metres from where the cruiser was parked, and a granite monument by the building's entrance. (CBC) The SIRT report does not identify the two officers who fired their weapons. It says both had been called into work at 3 a.m. AT and drove together in a unmarked Nissan Altima to a makeshift command centre at the fire hall in Great Village. There they were briefed on the situation and learned RCMP believed five people had been killed by a heavily armed gunman in Portapique. Police later learned Gabriel Wortman had killed 13 of his neighbours in the community that Saturday night. In the morning, one of the Mounties spoke to Wortman's spouse, Lisa Banfield, who relayed that he had been wearing an orange safety vest and driving a replica police cruiser. Later, after learning about shots fired in Debert, where two women would be found dead in their vehicles, the two Mounties headed toward Onslow, searching for the gunman, according to the SIRT report. Debert is midway between Glenholme and Onslow, which are about 14 kilometres apart. The bystander who the Mounties mistook for the gunman, seen here in surveillance video, ran inside the fire hall. (Onslow Belmont Fire Brigade surveillance cameras) It's not clear from the SIRT report if the two Mounties knew what the fire hall was being used for. However, the SIRT investigation reviewed all radio transmissions sent that morning. It found that when the pair was working on April 19, there were 2245 radio communications and only two related to the fire hall in Onslow being used as a comfort centre. The analysis found that neither mentioned "that security would be present at the fire hall." As the Mounties approached from the west, they stopped in the middle of the road after seeing the cruiser parked outside and a man standing near the driver's side door in a reflective vest. He "was dressed in a fashion similar to other accounts of how the killer was dressed," SIRT found. "They could not tell if the driver's side door was open or if anyone was in the car because they were over 88 meters away and facing the passenger side of that vehicle," according to the report. The SIRT investigation said the two Mounties had a radio in their vehicle and a portable radio but ran into problems trying to communicate what they were seeing at the hall. The watchdog agency said they yelled at the man outside the hall and he "did not show his hands but rather ducked behind the marked police car then popped up and ran toward the fire hall entrance." In response, one Mountie fired his rifle four times and the other fired once. "The evidence establishes that the [two Mounties] had reasonable grounds to believe the person they saw, who was disobeying their orders, was the mass murderer who had, in the preceding hour, killed three more persons," the report concluded. One witness said she counted 32 bullet holes in signs at the fire hall. Repairing the damage cost $39,000 which the fire brigade says the RCMP paid. (Submitted by Sharon McLellan) Firefighters 'frustrated and disappointed' The Onslow Belmont Fire Brigade said the SIRT findings have left them "frustrated and disappointed that there will be no accountability for the RCMP." "Their actions that day endangered lives, damaged property and caused mental health issues for many of the people involved," the brigade said in a statement posted to their Facebook page. The post went on to say that the volunteer brigade "will move past the horrific events of that day and we will continue to act in an accountable, safe and professional manner with all our first responder partners and our community." Deputy fire chief Darrell Currie, who was among those inside the hall during the shooting, said he and Chief Greg Muise would not comment further. $39K in damage Surveillance video from outside the fire hall shows the RCMP officer who had been in his vehicle standing, with his hands up, around 10:21 a.m. One of the officers who had been shooting walked toward him with his long gun pointed at the ground. They appeared to exchange words, while the second officer did a loop behind the building on foot. They appeared to be on the property for about three minutes. The officers are seen in surveillance video leaving the parking lot about three minutes after they started firing.(Onslow Belmont Fire Brigade surveillance cameras) SIRT director Felix Cacchione said the two officers fired their standard-issue carbines, which are high-powered, short-barrelled rifles. "The weapons were seized, photographed and tested," Cacchione wrote in an email to CBC News. "The magazines were all full when the weapons were discharged. They were subsequently emptied and the remaining bullets counted and that is how we know only five shots were fired." Witnesses told CBC they counted dozens holes around the building. It cost $39,000 to repair the siding, equipment, monument and sign. The fire department previously confirmed to CBC that the RCMP picked up the bill. Radio problems In addition to looking at the mentions of the fire hall as a comfort centre, SIRT examined transcripts of all the 7731 radio transmissions sent over the Colchester, East Hants and Emergency Response Team radio channels during the 13-hour period following the first 911 call in Portapique. The agency's report said they contained an "overwhelming volume of information." It found that of the 70 radio transmissions the two officers who fired in Onslow tried to make that morning, only 34 came across with audio. The other half were recorded as having no audio. The two officers reported they were "bonged out" when they tried to communicate — on the mobile radio in their vehicle and the portable radio they carried — about what they were seeing. SIRT determined this happens when "either the radio is in a poor coverage area and cannot communicate with the radio Tower or the radio Tower is at capacity and does not have an available talk path." A subsequent test at the site during the SIRT investigation determined poor coverage wasn't a problem in the area. The report concluded "there was no available talk path due to the heavy volume of radio traffic" SIRT's analysis also found that the RCMP officer who was stationed outside the fire hall tried to communicate three times in the span of 10 seconds while shots were being fired. It found one of those messages was audible, one could only partly be made out and a third was inaudible.
A B.C. professor would like to see a robot take your vitals when you visit a doctor in the somewhat near future. Dr. Woo Soo Kim, associate professor of mechatronic systems engineering at Simon Fraser University, has developed health care robots that can measure heart rate, respiration rate, temperature and oxygen levels. The oxygen level measurement in particular could be used to monitor severe COVID-19 patients. He hopes the sensor robots can support doctors and nurses, and is currently using two prototypes to collaborate with a team of Vancouver Coastal Health researchers on how a technology like this could be applied in practice. There’s a lot to be worked out — including how comfortable will patients be receiving care from a robot – but Kim hopes to have sensing robots in health care in five to 10 years. He imagines a full complement of medical care robots, including passive bots that take vitals, companion bots that would hang out with patients to regularly monitor vitals so people don’t need to wear an uncomfortable device, and even receptionist bots. We might already be warming up to machine-based medical care, as a recent report indicated most British Columbians now prefer virtual meetings with their doctors for routine check ups. READ MORE: Majority of British Columbians now prefer routine virtual doctor’s visits: study His lab, Additive Manufacturing in SFU’s Surrey campus, has been working on advanced 3D printing, wearable technology and sensing robots since he arrived in 2010, and narrowed their focus health care uses in 2018. He works with six to seven students and interns. Now they have two working prototypes to take to doctors and nurses. One is an arm, completely made in the lab with 3D printed origami. The second machine is a shiny, white humanoid that Kim’s lab has added on their own hand with highly specialized electron sensors. The origami design was chosen not just because it’s cool. His lab has spent years testing various architectural solids with 3D printing, and found that “3D origami structures have naturally less fatigue characteristics with re-configurable structures. So, it’s good if they are used for bending structures such as our fingers,” Kim said. Funding has been partially provided by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, and the lab is applying for more grants to expand development. The first stage of robotic health care is passive, with the machines gathering information and sharing results with human health care professionals, but Kim envisions future machines that could be more involved. Do you have something to add to this story or something else we should report on? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Zoë Ducklow, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, North Island Gazette
Which Canadian political party has the best interests of Black people at heart?
EDMONTON — Alberta’s health minister says the province is considering whether to follow British Columbia in extending the time between COVID-19 vaccine doses. Tyler Shandro says a committee of COVID-19 experts is analyzing emerging data and a decision is coming. The B.C. government announced Monday that it will extend the wait between first and second doses to four months to get more people vaccinated overall in a shorter time period. B.C. based its decision on data coming from the United Kingdom, Israel and Quebec that showst the first dose of vaccines is 90 per cent effective. When Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech began distributing their vaccines late last year, it was recommended the first and second shots be completed within about six weeks maximum to be fully effective. The Oxford-AstraZeneca has also been approved for use in Canada, but a national panel of vaccine experts is recommending it only be given to people under 65 – a guideline Shandro says Alberta will follow. This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 2, 2021 The Canadian Press
An officer with the Queens District RCMP has been awarded with the prestigious Commanding Officer’s Commendation for Bravery. Cpl. Robert Frizzell was recognized for his courageous rescue of a woman from the Mersey River on the morning of May 10, 2020, after an accident landed her vehicle submerged in water. In a social media announcement of the award on February 25, the RCMP described how, when Frizzell arrived on scene, the vehicle was fully submerged in the Mersey. “An occupant of the vehicle was able to get out of the car but was floating downstream and unable to make it to shore. “Knowing that a water recovery unit would take time to arrive, Cpl. Frizzell chose to get in the water. He grabbed a PFD and a paddleboard, then tied a rope around himself harness style, with another member and volunteer firefighter remaining on shore to hold the other end of the rope. “He swam into the river, grabbed hold of the woman and continued to hold onto her while the on-shore member and firefighter pulled them to safety,” the post continued. It ended with, “Congratulations on this well-deserved recognition, Cpl. Frizzell.” RCMP Commanding Officer for Nova Scotia, Lee Bergerman, presented Frizzell with the award February 11. Frizzell declined to be interviewed by LighthouseNOW, preferring to deflect praise to all of the responders that were on the scene that day. In an email to the newspaper, he commented that he was “truly thankful” for being recognized for the award. Nonetheless, he added, although he was the one who went into the water, “there was a whole team of others that were instrumental in rescuing the woman. “From all the onlookers who provided support and the paddleboard, the other emergency personal both police and fire, who held the rope, and everyone who provided medical care after the woman was brought out of the water, it really was a team effort. It was really great to see a community come together and help someone in need,” said Frizzell. Staff Sergeant Daniel Archibald of the Queens District RCMP echoed the praise given to the officer. “We are all very proud of the actions of Cpl. Frizzell as well as actions of the other officers and firefighters that day. We are, of course, most happy with the fact that the victim in this incident was able to ‘walk away’ with no long-term injuries,” Archibald commented to LighthouseNOW in an email. “All too often, as first responders, we often see things go the other way, unfortunately. It’s great to see Cpl. Frizzell and others get recognized for single incidences like this one, as all too often these acts of bravery happen every day across this country and no one hears about it,” Archibald added. Hailing from Prince Edward Island, Frizzell has served in Airdrie, Alberta and in three communities in the Northwest Territories: Behchoko, Tuktoyaktuk and Aklavik. He arrived in Liverpool in September 2019. In an article that appeared in LighthouseNOW following the event, Captain John Long of the Liverpool Fire Department, who was on the scene, was quoted saying he hoped there’s recognition in the future for the officer who jumped into action that morning. “He deserves kudos for that because that took guts, I’ll tell you,” said Long. Kevin McBain, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, LighthouseNOW Progress Bulletin