Former President Donald Trump considered replacing the acting attorney general with an official willing to pursue unsubstantiated claims of election fraud, and he pushed the Justice Department to ask the Supreme Court to invalidate President Joe Biden’s victory, the Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday. Citing people familiar with the matter, the Journal said the efforts in the last weeks of Trump's presidency failed because of resistance from his Justice appointees who refused to file what they viewed as a legally baseless lawsuit in the Supreme Court. Other senior department officials later threatened to resign if Trump fired then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, several people familiar with the discussions told the Journal.
A snowmobiler has died after colliding with a vehicle in the town of Ingleside, Ont., Saturday afternoon, police say. The 44-year-old from South Stormont, Ont., had driven his snowmobile onto County Road 2 when he was struck by an eastbound vehicle at around 2 p.m., Ontario Provincial Police said in a media release. The man was pronounced dead at the scene, OPP said. His name has not yet been released. No one in the other vehicle was injured, police said. As of 5:20 p.m. detours were in place on County Road 2 between Dickinson Drive and Killarney Road. The crash happened about 25 kilometres west of Cornwall, Ont.
A COVID-19 scare caused Canada's planned scrimmage with the U.S. to be called off Saturday in Bradenton, Fla.The Canadian men had been scheduled to play two 70-minute soccer scrimmages against the Americans. Both teams are in camp, in separate bubbles, at the IMG Center.But four inconclusive tests from players/staff in the Canadian camp Friday caused the teams to cancel the match as a precaution. With both camps coming to an end on the weekend, there was no opportunity to reschedule."This is part of the learning we were hoping to be exposed to when we're down here, to understand how to adapt on the fly to a new COVID reality," Canada coach John Herdman said in an interview. "And again right at the core of everyone's decision are the health and safety of players. It's difficult times but we have to experience it to know how to adapt and then come out of it stronger."The inconclusive Canadian tests eventually came back negative and the Canadians played an intrasquad game instead.The match was billed as Red versus White with more veteran players at the core of the Red team. The youngsters won 1-0, however, with Vancouver Whitecaps defender Derek Cornelius knocking in a rebound."It's unfortunate the timing," Herdman said if the cancelled U.S. scrimmage. "But at the end of the day we got out of today what we hoped, which was another opportunity to assess all the players and get a sense of how our young players are tracking for the men's national team or the Olympic squad. And there were some real good learnings today."World Cup and CONCACAF Olympic qualifying are scheduled to begin in March. The Gold Cup follows in July.Herdman called the replacement intrasquad contest "an intense match.""These players when they compete against each other they tend to ramp it up another level," he said."It was a close game and a tough match for both teams," he added.The youngsters also won the first intrasquad scrimmage last Sunday, with Whitecaps forward Theo Bair scoring the lone goal after Toronto FC winger Jacob Shaffelburg was taken down by CF Montreal defender Kama Miller. Vancouver 'keeper Maxime Crepeau saved Pacific FC's Marco Bustos' penalty but Bair headed the rebound in.The Canada camp did not fall in a FIFA international window so top players like Alphonso Davies (Bayern Munich). Jonathan David (Lille), Scott Arfield (Rangers), Junior Hoilett (Cardiff City), Milan Borjan (Red Star Belgrade) and Atba Hutchinson and Cyle Larin (both Besiktas) were not called in.But Herdman likes what he saw from those on hand, knowing depth could be crucial in a busy 2021. Because of COVID, a sore throat or case of the sniffles carry different implications and consequences these days, he noted."We're going to have to take bigger squads into our environments," Herdman said. "That's going to create a lot more opportunities."And I think a lot of these young players, particularly the guys that have broken through in MLS (last) year — Tajon Buchanan (New England), Alistair Johnston (Nashville SC), Ralph Priso (Toronto FC), Derek Cornelius (Vancouver) — there was a lot of the younger core players that showed that they could potentially push into that MNT (men's national team) environment."Herdman said with the uncertainty over the start of the 2021 MLS season, he may try for another camp for the North American players in advance of March. ---Follow @NeilMDavidson on TwitterThis report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021 Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press
VANCOUVER — A burned body, believed to be of a homeless person, has been found in a forested area of North Vancouver, B.C. RCMP Sgt. Peter DeVries says no foul play is suspected at this time and instead this appears to be a tragic accident. He says a resident of a nearby home called police around 5 p.m. Friday about a fire in the bushes behind the Phibbs Exchange bus loop near Orwell Street. Police found the body along with items that suggested the person had set up shelter in the area. DeVries says the cause of the fire is under investigation but the temperature has dropped significantly in North Vancouver and the person might have been trying to warm themselves up. He says the coroners service is working to identify the person and it is not currently known if the individual was a woman or a man. He says it's not clear whether anyone other than the deceased person was camping there and no one else was at the scene when police arrived. DeVries is urging everyone to do what they can to help the homeless, especially as winter weather hits Metro Vancouver. "If you see homeless people, help them out," he said. He points to a program started by a fellow North Vancouver RCMP officer, Cpl. Randy Wong, called Warming the Homeless, which delivers socks, toques, mittens and other items to people living on the streets. When the weather gets cold, police proactively go out and find people who may be homeless and help them find shelter, DeVries added. "I know that police agencies throughout the Lower Mainland do the same things. It's a sad reality of society that this is the case." This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021. The Canadian Press
An effort to shake off some homesickness led Adam DuBourdieu to mix pop culture and provincial politics — namely, taking politicians involved in this election and matching them with their visual counterparts on "The Simpsons." Originally from Kippens on the province’s west coast, DuBourdieu, 30, moved to Edmonton, Alta., just before the COVID-19 pandemic set in. As with many Newfoundlanders and Labradorians, he experienced homesickness in the months that followed the move. A keen follower of local politics when living in the province, DuBourdieu set about combatting his traveller’s lament by having some fun with the upcoming provincial election. Combining his love for "The Simpsons" and politics, he matched the politicians running in the election with the Simpsons character he saw as their cartoon counterparts. “I always loved watching 'The Simpsons,'” DuBourdieu. “I watched it with my dad.” Some matchups were tough, while others were easy fits, such as the NDP’s Jim Dinn, a former schoolteacher, and his match with Principal Skinner. "You can't take yourself too seriously. Being a teacher, that's par for the course," Dinn said of that character match. Dinn has seen the rather large social media thread containing the pictures. He said that as a teacher, he learned long ago that you have to have a sense of humour, and it's a lesson he's taken with him to politics. Seeing the thread, he took it in good fun. He said it could be worse. It could turn into a meme like a recent picture of United States Senator Bernie Sanders. "Let's have a laugh with it," said Dinn. "It's a good thing. It's a bit of good fun." The result was a 47-part thread on Twitter filled with pictures of the politicians and their characters side by side. It is a mixture of retiring MHAs, incumbents and party leaders of all political stripes. "The Simpsons" and politics have a bit of history. Across its 32 seasons, the show has mixed humour and politics. The show seemingly predicted the start of the United States presidency of Donald J. Trump, and the Lisa Simpson presidency that followed him. Coincidentally, Torngat Mountains MHA Lela Evans is paired with the presidential Lisa. The relationship, however, between "The Simpsons" and the political arena doesn’t stop at a coincidental presidential prediction. The show has often tackled topics of the day, such as same-sex marriage and gun control, and it has often been accused of having a liberal bias. Springfield’s Mayor Quimby is a regularly appearing character, and DuBourdieu saw him as a perfect match for Conception Bay East-Bell Island incumbent David Brazil. Homer Simpson — coupled with Topsail-Paradise MHA Paul Dinn — once fought former U.S. president George H.W. Bush after the two became neighbours. Former U.S. presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Gerald Ford have also made cameo appearances on the show. DuBourdieu tabbed Ford as the right match with Mount Pearl North MHA Jim Lester. “Politics has always been in 'The Simpsons,' and Newfoundland politics has some characters,” said DuBourdieu. Harbour Grace-Port de Grave MHA Pam Parsons knew at once who voiced Bart Simpsons’ former babysitter, Laura Powers. “That’s the one where Darlene from Roseanne voiced the character. Sara Gilbert,” she said. Like other children of the ’80s and early ’90s, Parsons grew up in the early years of "The Simpsons." She saw the show move from animated shorts on "The Tracy Ullman Show" to a pop culture phenomenon on Fox. “Growing up as a child, I certainly watched 'The Simpsons.' I loved Bart Simpson. I think we all did,” said Parsons. “I even had the little toys that McDonald’s was putting out.” Parsons is one of 10 women featured in the long Twitter thread. Of the 10, nine are incumbent MHAs and their animated doppelgangers. The remaining one is Newfoundland and Labrador Lt.-Gov. Judy Foote. She was paired with Springfield Elementary second-grade teacher Mrs. Hoover. “I like that (Dubourdieu) was non-partisan,” said Parsons, who appreciated the comedic break it offered. “I got a good chuckle out of it.” The response to the sizeable thread has been favourable online. It was something that surprised DuBourdieu at first. Since it went online, there have been dozens of interactions between politicians and the public. People have marvelled at how perfect some of the comparisons are, such as independent MHA Eddie Joyce being matched with oil tycoon Rich Texan. “It is something people are familiar with,” DuBourdieu said about why he chose to use "The Simpsons" as a reference point. Liberal candidate George Murphy tweeted that he thought of himself as the lovable barfly Barney Gumble instead of Police Chief Wiggum, the character he is attached to. Other candidates, such as Progressive Conservative candidate Kristina Ennis and the NDP’s Jenn Deon, have expressed interest in being connected to their Simpsons doubles. Lake Melville NDP candidate Amy Hogan even went ahead and did her own. It was Jerri Mackleberry, the mother of notable twins Sherri and Terri. “I think I’m probably the twins, Sherri and Terri’s mom, Jerri. It’s is the purple hair and the glasses,” Hogan tweeted. DuBourdieu pledged to do a third part of the thread if there is enough interest. In the days since it was posted, a link to the thread made its way around the Progressive Conservative email chain. “We got a good kick out of it,” said Conservative MHA Barry Petten. "You can’t help but laugh.” The Conception Bay South representative readily admitted he wasn’t much of a Simpsons watcher and had little background on Superintendent Chalmers or why he was paired with him. Still, Petten said he appreciated the work and the humour it brought to the election. “It’s all good humour,” he said. Looking back on the process and the result of his humourous entry into the Newfoundland and Labrador political scene, DuBourdieu has no regrets about piecing everything together. Some comparisons were easy, while others required a bit more thought, he said, and he learned a little along the way, namely, how male-dominated this province’s legislature is. As the province rolls toward the election on Feb. 13, DuBourdieu will watch from his home in Alberta. In the meantime, he is glad he got to contribute to the run-up in some way. “I’m glad I did it and I hope people get a good chuckle out of it,” said DuBourdieu. Nicholas Mercer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Central Voice
OTTAWA — Conservative Leader Erin O'Toole says he was once willing to give his former leadership rival Derek Sloan the benefit of the doubt, but no longer. And he dismissed the idea that kicking Sloan out of caucus this week has pitted him against one of the party's most powerful wings, social conservatives, whose support O'Toole courted directly during the leadership race last year in part by backing Sloan at the time. In an interview with The Canadian Press, O'Toole said he didn't believe Sloan meant to be racist last year in his characterization of chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam. That's why he opposed efforts then to kick him out of caucus, O'Toole said. "I always will give a colleague, or anyone in Parliament, in public life, the benefit of the doubt or, you know, listen to them the first time," O'Toole said. "And that was the case early on with Derek, when he said he did not mean to malign the intentions of Dr. Tam." But O'Toole said a "pattern developed" since then, and frustrations mounted that Sloan's extreme views posed an ever-present danger to the party's goal of forming government. It all appeared to come to a head last week. In the aftermath of riots in the U.S. led by extreme right wing supporters of now-former U.S. president Donald Trump. O'Toole faced pressure from caucus, conservative supporters and his rivals to firmly disavow any elements of extremism in his party's ranks. Last Sunday, O'Toole issued a statement doing just that. The next day, media organization PressProgress reported O'Toole's outrage over Sloan's leadership campaign accepting a donation from a known white nationalist. While O'Toole moved swiftly to start the process of kicking Sloan out — getting 20 per cent of MPs on side as required by law — he insisted the demand was driven by caucus, as evidenced in the majority vote to remove him. "The caucus was ready to make that decision and send a strong message that we are a welcoming party, we respect one another, and we respect Canadians," he said. O'Toole disputed accusations from Sloan and anti-abortion groups that the decision to kick him out had nothing to do with the Ontario MP's previous statements. In recent weeks, Sloan has been pushing to get as many socially conservative delegates as possible registered for the party's policy convention in March. Sloan, as well as the Campaign Life Coalition and RightNow, want enough delegates in their camp so motions they support will pass, including one that would remove the existing policy stating a Conservative government would never regulate abortion. They also want to elect a slate of directors to the party's national council to entrench their strength. Sloan said the decision to kick him out was a kneejerk reaction to what happened in the U.S. But he also contends the move was driven by anger from his fellow MP's unhappy to se him actively courting money and support in their ridings. He's pledged to name them so social conservatives know who is trying to silence their voices, he said. "They think they are little petty princes ruling these fiefdoms and no one else can have a say," Sloan said. O'Toole rejected the idea that Sloan's efforts amount to an attempt to take over the party, and O'Toole's own move was a bid to stop it. "There is no such effort to the extent that Mr. Sloan is suggesting," he said. Sloan had little national profile when he entered the Conservative leadership race just a few months after becoming an MP. But early on, he garnered attention for suggesting he wasn't certain of the scientific basis for a person being LGBTQ. From there, he quickly became well known for his often extreme social conservative views. His comments about Tam, in which he suggested her loyalty lay with China rather than Canada, sparked outrage and took criticism against him to the next level. Last spring, in discussing the Liberal government's pandemic response and Tam's use of suspect World Health Organization data from China, Sloan provocatively asked whether Tam was working for Canada or China. Tam was born in Hong Kong. Questioning someone's loyalty is considered a racist trope. Sloan denied he was being racist. Still, a number of Ontario MPs — some who were supporters of leadership contender and longtime Conservative Peter MacKay — began an effort to have him removed from caucus. O'Toole shut it down, for reasons he wouldn't divulge then, but to observers, it smacked of politics. MacKay was running a progressive campaign. O'Toole's was aimed at the more centre right, while Sloan and Leslyn Lewis were targeting the socially conservative right. With Sloan gone, his backers would have more likely gone to Lewis, splitting the vote on the right between her and O'Toole, giving MacKay a path to victory. Except O'Toole backed Sloan, and would later take out social media ads hyping his decision. It was one of several steps he took to directly court Sloan's supporters, and when it came to voting time, they would ultimately help put O'Toole over the top to beat MacKay. The way the race played out has led to questions for O'Toole ever since about how he'd balance the demands of the social conservative wing of the party with his stated intent to broaden its overall appeal. O'Toole said he's aware people have "trust issues" with his party, suggesting social media contributes to the issue and noting he must break that online bubble if he hopes to see his party win. "The Prime Minister has to try and bring the country together: the diversity of its people, its geography, its industries, and the points of view and backgrounds of everyone," he said of the office he hopes to hold. "No one ever said it's easy." This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021. Stephanie Levitz, The Canadian Press
WASHINGTON — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson made clear to President Joe Biden on Saturday that he's eager to forge a new U.S.-U.K. trade deal. The push for a new deal came in a broad-ranging call between the two leaders that touched on the global response to the coronavirus pandemic as well as the Biden administration announcing this week that the U.S. would rejoin the Paris climate accord and the World Health Organization, according to a statement from Downing Street. A new trade agreement between the allies is a higher priority for Johnson than it is for Biden. The U.K. regained control over its national trade policy at the start of the month following the end of a post-Brexit transition period. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday that the administration had no timeline for forging a new trade deal as Biden's attention is largely focused on getting the coronavirus pandemic under control and pressing Congress to pass the president's $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief plan. Janet Yellen, Biden's Treasury secretary nominee, also signalled during her confirmation hearing earlier this week that Biden wasn't eager to negotiate new trade deals. “President Biden has been clear that he will not sign any new free trade agreements before the U.S. makes major investments in American workers and our infrastructure,” Yellen said. Downing Street said Saturday that Biden and Johnson discussed “the benefits of a potential free trade deal between our two countries," and Johnson “reiterated his intention to resolve existing trade issues as soon as possible." The White House in its own statement said that the two leaders spoke about combating climate change, containing COVID-19, and ensuring global health security as well as shared foreign policy priorities in China, Iran and Russia. But the statement notably made no mention of discussion on trade. The call with Johnson was at least Biden's third call with a foreign counterpart since Friday. The president spoke with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador on Friday evening. Aamer Madhani, The Associated Press
FRISCO, Texas — Dallas Stars captain Jamie Benn didn't practise Saturday, a day after his right leg buckled awkwardly during a collision in the season opener. Coach Rick Bowness provided no update after practice on Benn's condition or his status for Sunday's game, when the Stars play Nashville again. The coach only repeated what he said after the 7-0 win over the Predators on Friday night, saying Benn has a lower-body injury and is day-to-day. Benn got hurt when colliding with Viktor Arvidsson in the second period. Benn went to both knees on the ice, before going to the bench and then being helped down the tunnel before gingerly walking himself. The Stars captain returned a few minutes later for a power play, but didn’t play after the second intermission, when Dallas already led 5-0. The Stars were the last NHL team to open the season after their first four games were postponed because of COVID-19 protocols. They started with their most lopsided victory since beating the New York Rangers 10-2 on Feb. 6, 2009. It was their most goals in a shutout victory since blanking Anaheim 8-0 on March 21, 2001. ___ More AP NHL coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL The Associated Press
The federal government is providing Ontario with some much-needed support in the fight against COVID-19. Ottawa is deploying two mobile health units – an additional 200 beds – to the Greater Toronto Area. The assistance comes as the province grapples with the growing strain on its hospital system. Morganne Campbell has more in this report.
Alberta reported 573 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, and 13 more deaths. Active cases continue to drop, with 9,727 total cases of the illness in Alberta reported Saturday, a decrease of 260 from Friday. Hospitalizations also saw a slight decrease, with 676 people in hospital with the illness on Saturday — down 15 from Friday — including 114 in intensive care unit beds. On Friday, there were 691 people in hospital, with 115 in intensive care unit beds. Provincial labs completed 10,894 tests for the disease on Friday, for a positivity rate of about 5.3 per cent, down fromabout 13,000 tests completed on Thursday. The positivity rate remained about the same from the previous day, which had a positivity rate of five per cent. Of the 13 deaths reported Saturday, two involved people in their 20s: a man and a woman, both in the Calgary zone. Three deaths in total were in the Calgary zone, four in the Edmonton zone, four in the North zone, and two in the Central zone. The deaths occurred between Dec. 16 and Jan. 22. Since the pandemic began last March, there have been 120,330 cases of COVID-19 in Alberta, including 1,525 deaths from the disease. Here's a regional breakdown of active cases: Calgary zone: 3,786 Edmonton zone: 3,407 North zone: 1,325 Central zone: 799 South zone: 396 Unknown: 14 An additional 1,022 doses of vaccine had been administered by the end of the day on Friday, bringing the total number of doses administered to 98,807. Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta's chief medical officer of health, will provide her next in-person COVID-19 update on Monday.
VANCOUVER — Several Metro Vancouver taxi companies have lost a court bid to quash the approvals of ride-hailing operators Uber and Lyft in British Columbia. Nine cab companies filed a petition asking the B.C. Supreme Court to overturn the decisions of the provincial Passenger Transportation Board that allowed the two major ride-hailing providers to operate. The cab companies argued that the board's decisions were "patently unreasonable," because they allowed Uber and Lyft an unlimited fleet size while the number of taxis is capped. The companies, including Yellow Cab and Black Top Cabs, claimed that the board failed to consider whether there was a public need for an unlimited number of ride-hailing cars in the province. The board also did not consider whether granting unlimited licences to Uber and Lyft would promote "sound economic conditions" in the passenger transportation business in B.C., the cab companies argued. The cab companies said that the board had extensive evidence before it describing the economic harm suffered by taxi operators in other jurisdictions as a result of allowing unlimited ride-hailing. However, Justice Sandra Wilkinson said in a written ruling this week that the board carefully considered fleet size and decided not to limit ride-hailing cars at this time, but left the issue open for future review. "In each of the decisions, the board devotes numerous paragraphs to discussing whether an indeterminate fleet size will promote sound economic conditions in the passenger transportation industry," she wrote in the decision dated Jan. 20. "This is not a deferral of a decision or a failure to consider the issue of fleet size. I would go so far as to say that the board made a very common sense decision in the circumstances." The board's decisions were made one year ago, on Jan. 23, 2020. Wilkinson added there is nothing in the board's decisions that is "obviously untenable" or "clearly irrational," and therefore they cannot be considered "patently unreasonable." She dismissed the petition and granted costs to Uber and Lyft. The B.C. Taxi Association, Yellow Cab and Black Top Cabs did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the ruling. Uber said in a statement that the ruling of the justice is clear and speaks for itself. "Uber is excited to be celebrating one year in Metro Vancouver this weekend, and looks forward to making the app available in more communities in 2021," it said. Lyft did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The arrival of ride-hailing in Metro Vancouver early last year, long after it was already common in many other Canadian cities, was contentious. The provincial government has said it spent two years developing legislation and regulations in advance of ride-hailing licences being approved by the Passenger Transportation Board. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021. Laura Dhillon Kane, The Canadian Press
Toronto police say they have arrested 10 people flouting provincial orders at anti-lockdown protests in the downtown core Saturday. In a news release late Saturday evening, police say they monitored and attended "several large gatherings" at Nathan Phillips Square, Yonge-Dundas Square and Queen's Park. Among the 10 people charged, seven protesters are facing criminal charges. Of those, five are facing charges for obstructing a police officer, two for common nuisance, one for assaulting a police officer and one for four counts of public mischief. All 10 protesters were arrested at Yonge-Dundas Square. Police say nine charges were also laid against attendees at the gatherings for failing to comply with the province's emergency orders, and three charges were laid under the Highway Traffic Act. This comes exactly one week after Toronto police arrested three people and issued 18 charges for failure to comply with the provincial stay-at-home order currently in effect for protesters in large gatherings that were flouting the order. "[We] continue to respond to calls to attend large gatherings and will take steps to disperse. Police will issue tickets and summonses to individuals when there is evidence of non-compliance of the provincial order under the EMCPA or the Reopening Ontario Act (ROA)," police said in a news release.
Twenty people in custody at the North Fraser Pretrial Centre in Port Coquitlam, B.C., have tested positive for COVID-19, according to Fraser Health. The health authority announced the outbreak on Friday and said it is working to identify others who may have had contact with those who tested positive at the jail. There have been several outbreaks in prisons and jails across Canada, including Mission Institution in B.C.'s Fraser Valley, where an inmate died in April. Fraser Health says there is also a new outbreak at Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster. It says two patients tested positive for COVID-19 in a surgical unit at the hospital and the outbreak is limited to that unit. The emergency department remains open and the health authority says other areas of the hospital are not affected by the outbreak. The health authority also announced two outbreaks have ended: one at the rehabilitation unit at Queen's Park Care Centre in New Westminster and the other at Good Samaritan Delta View Care Centre. The news follows Friday's announcement of 508 new cases of COVID-19 and nine more deaths. In a written statement, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix put the number of hospitalized patients at 315, including 74 who are in intensive care. There are currently 4,479 active cases of coronavirus in the province. On Saturday, Vancouver Coastal Health announced an exposure event at Hail Mary's, a restaurant at 670 East Broadway, from Jan. 13 to Jan. 16. The B.C. Centre for Disease Control also announced new possible COVID-19 exposures on recent flights between Toronto and Vancouver, and from Dallas to Vancouver.
BIRMINGHAM, England — Aston Villa returned to winning ways and climbed into the top 10 of the Premier League with a 2-0 victory against Newcastle on Saturday. Club-record signing Ollie Watkins scored for the first time in 10 matches to set Villa on its way to all three points with a 13th-minute strike, before Bertrand Traore doubled the lead shortly before halftime. Villa boss Dean Smith watched from the stands as he served a one-match touchline ban after he was charged by the FA for using abusive and/or insulting language towards referee Jon Moss during the defeat at Manchester City. He will have been pleased with what he saw as Villa moved up to eighth in the table. For Newcastle, the downward spiral continued and Steve Bruce’s team has dropped to 16th spot after a sixth defeat in a eight-match winless run in the league. ___ More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports The Associated Press
La Septîlienne Émilie Maïsterrena est auteure et éditrice de ses propres romans d’horreur-fiction. Grâce à Cauchemars Airlines, l’auteure propose aux gens d’embarquer à bord de vols au cœur de son imagination, avec elle comme commandant. Déjà à la maternelle, son enseignante de l’époque avait remarqué qu’Émilie se passionnait pour l’écriture. Elle a quelque peu perdu la flamme à l’adolescence, mais s’y est remise depuis 3 ans. À présent, elle revient en force avec un concept soutenu, tournant autour des voyages, de l’horreur et d’histoires dignes des pires cauchemars. Dans son roman Oslav, Émilie propose aux lecteurs d’embarquer à bord du vol 218, à destination de la Côte-Nord, afin de découvrir ce territoire d’une toute autre manière. Il respecte son univers, tout comme ses autres créations, toutes autant surprenantes les unes que les autres. Le vol 513, sa prochaine parution, sera sorti tout droit de son côté obscur, qu’elle dit ne pas avoir montré complètement dans Oslav, œuvre qu’elle juge plus douce. Le site web et la page Facebook de l’auteure contiennent et des informations inédites sur les personnages, à travers de courtes nouvelles. De plus, Émilie Maïsterenna s’y entretiens en direct à ses lecteurs. Son roman est disponible en s’adressant directement à la dame, via ces plateformes. Il est actuellement en réimpression, les premières copies ayant toutes été vendues. Voici le lien de la page Facebook de l’auteure :https://www.facebook.com/emiliemaisterrenaauteureKarine Lachance, Initiative de journalisme local, Ma Côte-Nord
L’espoir d’un retour à la normale se renforce alors que la population de la Jamésie reçoit progressivement la première dose du vaccin contre la COVID-19. Au moment d’écrire ces lignes, le 20 janvier, l’équipe de vaccination s’en va administrer Moderna au Manoir Pierre-Guénette de Chapais. Les personnes âgées de Chibougamau, de Lebel-sur-Quévillon et de Matagami, ainsi que le personnel soignant ont déjà été vaccinées. La vaccination des autres travailleurs de la santé a déjà commencé et devrait être terminée d’ici le 22 janvier. « Aucun effet secondaire anormal n’a été observé jusqu’à maintenant », affirme la présidente-directrice générale du Centre régional de santé et de services sociaux de la Baie-James (CRSSSBJ), Nathalie Boisvert. Nous avions hâte! Au Manoir Providence de Chibougamau, les quelques 70 résidents et travailleurs ont tous été vaccinés… sauf un! Cela s’est déroulé le 19 janvier entre 8 h 15 et 15 h. « Tout était merveilleusement organisé », assure un des copropriétaires, André Naud. « Avec l’éclosion qu’il y a eu avant Noël, c’était très difficile. À partir d’aujourd’hui, il y a eu un souffle nouveau, les gens étaient contents. Nous avions hâte! » M. Naud ne trouve pas bizarre qu’il faille maintenir les précautions même après le vaccin. « Ça fait moins de danger », explique-t-il. Quant à la personne qui a refusé d’être vaccinée, M. Naud affirme être le seul à connaitre son identité; il assure qu’elle ne subira aucun opprobre. « Elle peut encore changer d’idée », dit-il, taquin. 40 ans, 18 ans La vaccination pour les 40 ans et plus commence le 21 janvier aux salles des Chevaliers de Colomb de Lebel-sur-Quévillon et de Chapais, et à la salle adjacente à l’église de Matagami. À Chibougamau, elle début le 23 janvier, au Club de golf. Selon la disponibilité des doses, la vaccination pourrait s’étendre aux plus jeunes. Autrement, c’est en février que l’offre devrait être élargie aux 18 ans et plus. À Radisson, où il y a eu des difficultés de recrutement de personnel, la distribution de la première dose de vaccin, pour les 18 ans et plus, devrait avoir lieu à l’église pendant la première semaine de février. Selon Nathalie Boisvert, c’est le CRSSS Abitibi-Témiscamingue qui devrait procéder à la vaccination à Villebois et Valcanton. « Les discussions ne sont pas terminées, dit-elle. Ça devrait être la seconde semaine de février, pour les 18 ans et plus. » Rester à l’affût Comme c’est la première fois qu’une opération de ce type est effectuée, des modifications à l’horaire peuvent arriver. Des journées pourraient s’ajouter aux dates prévues. La population doit rester à l’affut. Pour recevoir le vaccin, la population doit préalablement prendre un rendez-vous, soit par téléphone, soit par le biais du site Internet du CRSSSBJ. Il est également important d’annuler son rendez-vous lorsqu’il y a empêchement, par respect pour la population et pour faciliter la gestion du temps des travailleurs de la santé. On demande aux patients de porter un gilet à manches courtes, pour faciliter l’opération, et de rester sur place 15 minutes après la piqure, afin de vérifier s’il y a des effets secondaires. Moderna choisi pour les facilités de gestion C’est le vaccin Moderna qui a été choisi pour le Nord-du-Québec, comme pour les autres régions éloignées et isolées du groupe 4, parce qu’il offre plus de facilités pour le transport et la congélation que le vaccin de Pfizer. « C’est un vaccin sécuritaire. Tous les milieux de recherches ont été mis à profit », assure Mme Boisvert, qui se réjouit que la Jamésie soit vaccinée avant plusieurs autres régions du Québec. La seconde dose du vaccin Moderna doit être administrée en mars. Selon des études citées par l’Institut national de santé publique du Québec, l’efficacité du vaccin chez les participants n’ayant reçu qu’une seule dose de vaccin est de 50,8 % en moyenne durant les 14 premiers jours et augmente à 92,1 % par la suite. Pour la seconde dose, l’efficacité est de 94,5 % après 14 jours. La durée de l’efficacité des vaccins n’est pas connue. La livraison des secondes doses est prévue au mois de mars pour l’ensemble de la population. Même après la seconde dose, il est recommandé de maintenir la distanciation physique, le lavage des mains et le port du masque. « L’objectif est de vacciner 80 % de la population pour lui donner une protection », explique la présidente-directrice du CRSSSBJ.Denis Lord, Initiative de journalisme local, La Sentinelle
Quebec's Hasidic Jewish council is asking all community members to follow public health guidelines after Montreal police intervened at several illegal gatherings in Outremont and the Plateau this weekend. "It is with regret that the Council of Hasidic Jews of Quebec has learned that certain members of the community have not respected the public health guideline limiting the number of people in a religious institution to 10," the council said in a statement Saturday night. In all, police were called to nine places where people were allegedly contravening public health rules on Saturday, and identified 223 offenders. Police issued 15 tickets for illegal indoor assemblies as well as one for breaking the curfew. According to SPVM spokesperson Const. Véronique Comtois, police were called to a synagogue on the corner of Hutchison Street and St-Viateur Avenue around 9:30 Saturday morning. There, Comtois said, officers found dozens of people inside the building. Police identified them and issued a general offence report, Comtois said. That report will be analyzed and more fines may be issued at a later date, she said. Just over two hours later, Montreal police issued another general offence report after being called to a place of worship on Durocher Street, near the corner of Lajoie Street. Comtois said officers found a group of people gathered both inside and outside. 2nd incident at same location According to Montreal police, it was the second time in less than a day that officers were called to the Durocher Street synagogue, after another illegal gathering around 5 p.m. Friday. In that incident, people fled when officers arrived. Police have since set up a security service in the area to make sure public health measures are being followed and to intervene if there are violations, a spokesperson said. While the Council of Hasidic Jews is denouncing any illegal gatherings that took place, the organization is also accusing the SPVM of not properly enforcing the law. At least one of the establishments in question has three separate entrances into three separate closed off spaces, the council said, allowing them to safely accommodate 10 people each. Mayer Feig, a member of the Council of Hasidic Jews, said the government's new regulations are confusing. "Before, it was 25 people per room. Now, it says 10, and that came late on Friday. We didn't know if it was  per room or per building," he said. Feig also denounced what he called a "disproportionate" police presence at the synagogues this weekend. "I don't think you need 30 police cars for 15 people," he said. "It's really frustrating." 'Now is not the time to gather,' Guilbault says The province had ordered all places of worship to shut down earlier this month, with an exception for funerals. But earlier this week, the province reversed that decision, opting to limit religious gatherings to a maximum of 10 people instead. In a statement to Radio-Canada, Public Security Minister Geneviève Guilbault called illegal gatherings "unacceptable" and said it's important for all Quebecers to keep following the public health guidelines put in place. "The regulations are the same for everyone," the statement said. "Now is not the time to gather. The situation is still fragile in our hospitals." Outremont Mayor Philipe Tomlinson said he was disappointed to see people in the borough not following the rules. "It's a matter of public health. It's not just their health, it's everyone's health."
TORONTO — The federal government has approved an Ottawa company's made-in-Canada rapid COVID-19 test, Health Canada confirmed Saturday as the nation's top doctor warned the virus's impact on the health-care system showed no signs of abating. The test developed by Spartan Bioscience is performed by a doctor and provides on-site results within an hour, a spokeswoman for the federal agency said. Spartan bills the test as the first "truly mobile, rapid PCR test for COVID-19 for the Canadian market." "The Spartan system will be able to provide quality results to remote communities, industries and settings with limited lab access, helping relieve the burden on overwhelmed healthcare facilities," the company said in a news release Saturday. The company originally unveiled a rapid test for COVID-19 last spring but had to voluntarily recall it and perform additional studies after Health Canada expressed some reservations. At the time, Spartan said Health Canada was concerned about the "efficacy of the proprietary swab" for the testing product. The new version uses "any nasopharyngeal swab" rather than one of the company's own design, Health Canada said, and meets the agency's requirements for both safety and effectiveness. The Spartan COVID-19 System was developed through clinical evaluation completed in Canada and the U.S., with the University of Ottawa Heart Institute as one of the testing locations. The company said it has already started production on the rapid tests. The news comes as Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada's chief public health officer, warned that COVID-19 continues to strain the health-care system even as daily case counts decline in several long-standing hot spots. "As severe outcomes lag behind increased disease activity, we can expect to see ongoing heavy impacts on our healthcare system and health workforce for weeks to come," she said in a written statement. Surging new infection rates continued to show signs of easing in multiple provinces, though one jurisdiction was poised to impose new restrictions in a bid to stem the ongoing spread. Public health officials in New Brunswick reported 17 new cases across the province, 10 of which were in the Edmundston region, which was set to go into a lockdown first thing Sunday morning. Starting at midnight, non-essential travel is prohibited in and out of the area, which borders northern Maine and Quebec's Bas-St-Laurent region. The health order forces the closure of all non-essential businesses as well as schools and public spaces, including outdoor ice rinks and ski hills. All indoor and outdoor gatherings among people of different households are prohibited. Saskatchewan, meanwhile, logged 274 new cases of the virus and three new deaths, while Manitoba counted three more deaths and 216 new diagnoses. Alberta logged 573 new cases and 13 virus-related deaths in the past 24 hours, while both Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador reported no new infections on Saturday. Both Quebec and Ontario reported fewer cases Saturday — 1,685 and 2,359 respectively. But officials in Ontario expressed concern about a highly contagious U.K. variant of the virus that was detected at a long-term care facility north of Toronto. Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit confirmed the variant was behind the outbreak at Roberta Place Retirement Lodge in Barrie, Ont., where 32 residents have died of COVID-19 and dozens of others have tested positive. "Stringent and consistent efforts are needed to sustain a downward trend in case counts and strongly suppress COVID-19 activity across Canada," Tam said. "This will not only prevent more tragic outcomes, but will help to ensure that new virus variants of concern do not have the opportunity to spread." Fears of variants that can circulate quickly come as the federal government considers a mandatory quarantine in hotels for travellers returning to Canada. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021. Victoria Ahearn and Nicole Thompson, The Canadian Press
IDRE FJALL, SWEDEN. — Being patient paid off handsomely for Canadian Reece Howden on Saturday. After sitting back for most of the final, the 22-year-old from Cultus Lake, B.C., came on to capture the gold medal in a World Cup ski cross competition. It was his second World Cup win in just over a month. Howden is accustomed to leading races but said that wasn't the idea Saturday. “The plan was to not come out in front, the draft was too strong," he said on Alpine Canada's website. "I wanted to chill in the middle of the pack and give my legs a bit of a break and once I made that last turn fire up those engines and get out in front. "Today was a day of racing, not a day of leading so I was super happy with my execution and it couldn’t have gone any better.” Montreal's Chris Del Bosco of Montreal was third in the small final Saturday and seventh overall for his best finish since 2018. "It's been a while since I've been back in the small finals," said Del Bosco, who ruptured his Achilles last summer. "It felt really good to get the monkey off my back. "I made a few small mistakes in that last round, but I am heading in the right direction." Tiana Gairns, of Prince George, B.C., was a career-best fifth in the women's event. Courtney Hoffos of Invermere, B.C., and Marielle Thompson of Whistler, B.C., were sixth and eighth, respectively. "Idre is interesting since it's such a long track with such a long straight section that you don't want to pass at the beginning," Gairns said. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2021. The Canadian Press
Amber Stewart, executive director of the Battlefords Sexual Assault Centre, wanted to make it easier for victims of sexual assault to file a police report if they wanted to pursue that option. "We know that the [statistics] on reported cases are extremely low," she said. "So how do we get those barriers down? And if we can make this experience even a little bit less painful and traumatizing, then I really wanted to make that happen." So the centre, which provides counselling to people affected by sexual or gender-based violence, teamed up with the Battlefords RCMP. Together, they have created a new safe space for interviews and counselling, located in the sexual assault centre. "It's actually a counselling room that we use to see clients" at the centre's office, Stewart said. Renovations were done for soundproofing, and to make sure it met RCMP's audio and visual requirements for recording statements, she said. According to Battlefords RCMP Staff Sgt. Jason Teniuk, having a warmer, welcoming and — most importantly — truly private place for victims of sexual assault to come forward was long overdue. Previously, people who wanted to report a sexual assault had to go to the Battlefords RCMP detachment. "When you come into our area, our waiting room is a very unprivate area, and you'll meet somebody at the front desk who is behind a barrier glass," said Teniuk. The front office area is often "full of people in various capacities," he said. "So now you put somebody who's just been involved in an extremely traumatic event, and you bring them into that environment, and they're standing in front of a glass wall talking to somebody on the other side, in full earshot of everybody else. That is intimidating. "I would even hazard to say that we're revictimizing that person by bringing them into that environment — but unfortunately, that's what we were presented with." Now, the process will be significantly different, with support for victims and survivors prioritized at every step. RCMP will have a direct line to the sexual assault centre, Stewart said. When RCMP receive a report of a sexual assault, the officer who takes the call will phone the line and be met at the BASC office by staff or a volunteer, and taken to the new interview space. "From there, our role is to support the RCMP and the victims for before and after they give their statement — making sure that they're comfortable, making sure they have everything they need, letting them know that we're there to talk before or after. "Then, of course, the RCMP will do their interview the way they need to do it." Breaking down barriers Stewart hopes the sexual assault centre will now be more able to address some of the other barriers that keep people from reporting sexual assault, such as access to child care. When people come into the new space to make a report, volunteers will be available to help out. "If you have small children and you can't leave them, you can bring them in and we've got someone here," she said. "We can play video games or watch Netflix or eat snacks, whatever the case may be, so that there really is no barrier. And that's what the end goal was for us — to address the barriers." Teniuk says child care has been significant issue in the past for people with young children who wanted to make a report to the RCMP. "I can't tell you the amount of times I've been involved in a situation where there has been a sexual assault, or any other kind of violent incident, and you'll have a young person or a young mom or young dad come in and they have their kids with them," he said. "And we've got to try and sort out a way that we can get a statement from that person, while trying to keep the kids entertained." From January to September of 2020, Saskatchewan RCMP say they received 3,711 reports of intimate partner violence. With the new space at Battlefords Sexual Assault Centre, Teniuk hopes more people will feel they can safely come forward and make a report. "I hope victims will come in and just feel as though they are being supported, that they're heard, and something is going to be done," he said. "That is extremely important to me. And while it does happen when they come [to the RCMP detachment], I think support has been a big component of what we're missing."