Trump Revives Racist 'Pocahontas' Slur Against Warren, Donald Jr. Responds: 'Savage!'

President Donald Trump apparently wasn’t paying attention — or maybe he was — when Native American leaders blasted his “racist” use of “Pocahontas” as a slur against Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). He resurrected it — again — Saturday in a tweet. But what was more startling was his eldest son’s response using an astonishing term: “Savage!!! I love my president!”

Trump wondered mockingly in a tweet Saturday if Warren would be the nation’s “first Native American presidential candidate” — denigrating both Warren and appearing to characterize the idea of a Native American candidate as unimaginable.

Warren has been criticized for referring to her Native American heritage. Though a DNA test last year indicated she likely had a Native American ancestor, she is not the member of any tribe. She apologized last week to the Cherokee Nation, whose leaders have said that being a tribal citizen is “rooted in centuries of culture and laws — not through DNA.” 

Several who responded on Twitter to Trump’s last line, “See you on the campaign TRAIL Liz,” saw it as a callous reference to the “Trail of Tears,” a brutal series of forced government relocations of Native American in the southeast beginning in 1830 that resulted in countless deaths.

Donald Trump Jr. responded to his father’s tweet on Instagram incorporating an astonishing term — “savage” — harkening back to the height of the nation’s racism amid massacres of thousands of Native Americans. He added: “I love my president.”

He was likely referring to the president’s comment as “savage,” but it was shockingly tone deaf — or a chilling deliberate choice.

Donald Jr.’s Instagram post also included one response to the president’s tweet that joked about the “Native American genocide” which “continues with another murder by the president,” apparently referring to Warren.

Both father and son’s posts drew appalled jeers — and cheers.

“Keep up the work as a mouthpiece for hate,” was one response on Donald Jr.’s Instagram post. “Yes, let’s continue to make jokes about the Native American genocide,” another noted sarcastically.

Still another: “NOT a fan of Elizabeth Warren, but retweeting [genocide tweet] is basically saying that the American presidents’ history of ordering the genocide of the Native Americans was a good thing.” Also, simply: “This is so effed up,” and: “You should be ashamed of yourself.”

The president was most recently attacked by Native Americans last month when he quipped in a tweet that Warren should have made a political video at Wounded Knee. Hundreds of unarmed Native Americans, many of them women and children, were slaughtered by American Troops in 1890 at Wounded Knee in South Dakota.

American Indians and their supporters were not amused. One compared it to joking about 9/11. “Flippant references to deadly historical conflicts and name-calling that mocks Native identity have no place in our political discourse,” Jefferson Keel, president of the National Congress of American Indians, said then in a statement.

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Trump has repeatedly been pulled up for using Pocahontas as a slur. John Norwood, general secretary of the Alliance of Colonial Era Tribes, said more than a year ago that the president should “stop using our historical people of significance as a racial slur against one of his opponents.”

Criticism continued in response to his latest tweet:

CORRECTION: A previous version of this story indicated that the Trail of Tears took place in the American Southwest instead of the Southeast. 

 

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  • Nigerian man plans to say goodbye to Canada after 10 years of immigration limbo
    News
    CBC

    Nigerian man plans to say goodbye to Canada after 10 years of immigration limbo

    After 10 years in Canada, Alpha Ndamati is resigned to giving up the immigration process, and is now actively trying to get deported. After years of red tape trying to become a permanent resident, the Nigerian man has been asking to leave the country and go home. But he's been given little direction on how to do so, and is asking why something he thought would be straightforward — immigrating to the N.W.T. — has left him at the end of his rope."I'm left dumbfounded," he said. "I don't wish this situation for my worst enemy." His bags are packed, and he's telling his story in hopes that no one else has to repeat his experience. Ndamati says he can't afford a ticket home himself, so he's trying to get a removal order issued by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada or the Canada Border Services Agency, forcing him to go. But he doesn't know how."If it means going back home, I'm willing to do that. But I don't want to see anybody go through the ordeal that I've gone through to get something that looks simple."Years of trying to stayWhen he graduated from Dalhousie University in 2014, he was hopeful that he could find his way into permanent residency within the three years before his post-graduate studies visa expired.Ndamati stayed in Halifax looking for a job, before moving to B.C. to work in the oil and gas sector and then onto Yellowknife about halfway through his visa.He says we wanted to move to the N.W.T. for a long time. When he saw online what appeared to be a seemingly straightforward immigration process with the territory's nominee program, he was sold.In June 2016, he got a job working at Corothers Home Hardware, and after six months of employment they agreed to help him apply for the territory's employer-driven nominee program.> If you advertise for me to come in, and I come in, and you push me out like this. \- Alpha NdamatiBut the employer failed to meet all the requirements and the application was denied, forcing Ndamati through more hoops. Despite help from a local law firm, and losing $2,000 to a dubious consultant he met through church, his last work visa expired in September 2019.He has reached out to MLAs for advice, as well as the federal government, and has been in touch with the Nigerian embassy in Ottawa. He says he has twice reached out to MP Michael McLeod's office to no avail. (McLeod's office wouldn't comment, pointing CBC to Canada Border Services Agency.)He gave up on the visa application process, feeling it was hopeless, and stopped working altogether out of fears that he would be committing a crime and get deported. But now all of his savings have dried up, and not wanting to go through the process again, he is asking Canada to send him back."This has been 10 years. I'm not supposed to be in this position if I've done everything outlined that I should do."No direction on how to stay, or how to leaveA few months ago he says he called the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), asking them how he could start the process of being deported. He says the agency told him that leaving the N.W.T. was under the RCMP's jurisdiction.So, a couple of weeks ago, he says he went to Yellowknife's RCMP detachment to get sent out of the country, only to be told that it was the responsibility of the CBSA. A spokesperson for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada told CBC that the border services agency is responsible for immigration enforcement.A spokesperson for the CBSA noted in an email that "any persons subject to a removal order can voluntarily depart the country and validate their removal from Canada at the CBSA office at the port of departure."CBC asked the agency how someone such as Ndamati can obtain a removal order, if they are willingly opting to leave but have not been told to, but did not hear back by the time of publication.N.W.T. immigrationImmigration is ultimately something that falls under federal jurisdiction, but nominee programs aim to allow provinces and territories to attract and select the newcomers to fill critical labour shortages and promote business development.The N.W.T. provides a nomination certificate to successful applicants, who then apply to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada for a review of whether the applicant is admissible to Canada.In 2017, the territorial government released its first-ever Northwest Territories' Immigration Strategy, a five-year plan to boost the nominee program.A spokesperson for the territory's Department of Education, Culture, and Employment told CBC that in the past three years they have taken multiple steps to encourage foreign nationals to settle in the territory, including promoting the program and making more information available online.The department said that in 2018 and 2019, approximately 80 per cent of complete applications submitted to the program were approved. And while they used to assess incomplete applications, they no longer do.But unfortunately, in cases like Ndamati's, some people don't always get the result they hoped for. The department says this can happen for multiple reasons, including the employee moving out of the territory, the application not meeting program criteria, and the employer withdrawing the application. For Ndamati, he's looking forward to putting years of confusion behind him. He just hopes it doesn't happen to anyone else."I don't understand. If you advertise for me to come in, and I come in, and you push me out like this."

  • Ontario emergency rooms fill up again as COVID-19 fears ebb, patients with other illnesses return
    Health
    CBC

    Ontario emergency rooms fill up again as COVID-19 fears ebb, patients with other illnesses return

    Ontario's emergency rooms are getting busier as most of the province prepares to enter Stage 3 of the recovery from COVID-19, and some doctors are warning patients are coming in with more serious illness after avoiding seeking care at the height of the pandemic.The most recent data from Health Quality Ontario shows there's an average wait time of 11.2 hours before patients are admitted to hospital. That's a steep drop from a record average wait of 18.3 hours in January of this year, but still an increase from an average wait time of nine hours recorded at the height of the pandemic. Dr. Erin O'Connor, deputy medical director for the University Health Network's emergency departments at Toronto General and Toronto Western hospitals, said at the peak of the pandemic her facilities were dealing with just 50 per cent of their normal volume. Now she's worried about what the results of that "drastic" decrease will be."People stopped presenting to emergency departments for things that they really should have been presenting to the departments for," she told CBC Toronto."We saw a decrease in [heart attack and stroke] presentations and the thought was that likely people were still having these events but were staying home."When patients did finally go to the emergency department, some did so late and with deteriorating health conditions."We know that delayed presentations for these things really result in poor outcomes. I think what's most heartbreaking for all of us is knowing that decisions needed to be made," O'Connor said.Doctors and hospital officials are bracing for a surge in people flooding back to emergency rooms to seek medical help that's unrelated to the novel coronavirus, especially as flu season approaches and even as COVID-19 is still infecting more than 100 people per day across the province.Meanwhile, the Ontario Ministry of Health said it's creating a plan that will optimize capacity across all sectors and help treat patients who have been waiting for elective surgeries that were postponed or cancelled due to the pandemic. Hallway medicine isn't safe, doctor saysIn a statement to CBC Toronto, the ministry addressed the growing concern felt by doctors like O'Connor about the increase in patient volume, given Ontario hospitals' history with overcapacity and the use of hallway medicine. "In 2020-21, the ministry will invest an additional $594 million in the hospital sector to accelerate progress on the government's commitment to address capacity issues," the statement read, referencing their March announcement on funding.The province intends to use the money to help publicly funded hospitals continue providing high-quality care to their patients and "support the ending of hallway health care in hospitals."O'Connor said her facilities are looking at extending the COVID-19 protocols put in place to prepare for a second wave of cases: making use of and maximizing existing spaces; erecting tents in parking lots to help with physical distancing; and installing Plexiglas to make shared rooms more isolated and safe. "But what we are not willing to do is to go back to the situation where we had patients in hallways. It is not safe, particularly when you have a certain amount of virus circulating in the community," she said.Ontario must prepare for second surge: OHA"A contingency plan is needed to ensure the health-care system is equipped for a potential second surge, including the creation of regional health service and staffing plans that must be in place at the earliest opportunity," said Anthony Dale, president and CEO of the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA), in a statement Monday evening. Dale said the OHA recommends that the government support the "widespread expansion" of home care and community services, virtual care, and maintenance or construction of new, temporary infrastructures to use to fight overcapacity issues, such as field hospitals and decommissioned buildings. At a Tuesday news conference, Premier Doug Ford touted his government's forthcoming plan to deal with a potential second wave of COVID-19, saying Ontario is now "100 times better and more prepared now with health care and PPE."The province is also launching a long-term care pilot project Tuesday morning, which the government says is another step toward ending hallway healthcare — something Ford promised to do during the 2018 election campaign. The project, in partnership with North York General Hospital, would give alternate level of care (ALC) hospital patients priority access to a long-term care home, a government statement read. Dale said the number of patients currently waiting in Ontario hospitals for an ALC, like home care or a long-term care home, is "well over 5,000."Ontarians have to play their partBut O'Connor said the province isn't the only body responsible for the public's health, saying citizens of Ontario have to do their part as well. "We need to think about how to protect each other so that things don't become overwhelming," she said."We have to remember that still keeping physically distanced, making sure your bubble is not too large, washing your hands, wearing masks ... [is] what's going to keep this big second wave surge from happening."

  • Autopsy confirms Naya Rivera's death was accidental drowning
    Celebrity
    The Canadian Press

    Autopsy confirms Naya Rivera's death was accidental drowning

    LOS ANGELES — An autopsy confirmed Tuesday that “Glee'' star Naya Rivera died from accidental drowning, officials said, while her family released a statement honouring her ”everlasting legacy and magnetic spirit."The examination, performed the day after the 33-year-old's body was found in a Southern California lake, showed no signs of traumatic injury or disease that might have contributed to the drowning, and gave no initial indication that drugs or alcohol may have played a role in her death, the Ventura County Medical Examiner said in a statement.Dental records were used to confirm Rivera's identity, and routine toxicology tests will be performed for the presence of drugs and alcohol, the statement said.Rivera was found in Lake Piru on Monday, five days after she disappeared while boating with her 4-year-old son, who was found asleep and alone on the boat hours later. The autopsy's findings were all consistent with the expectations of the Sheriff's Office, which conducted the search and investigation.Rivera's family members released their first public statement Tuesday since her disappearance, saying they are “so grateful for the outpouring of love and prayers for Naya, Josey and our family over the past week. While we grieve the loss of our beautiful legend, we are blessed to honour her everlasting legacy and magnetic spirit.”The statement said Rivera was “an amazing talent, but was an even greater person, mother, daughter and sister ... Heaven gained our sassy angel."The family thanked the search teams for their “commitment and unwavering effort to find Naya.”The creators of “Glee” also released a statement in tribute to Rivera Tuesday, announcing that they would be creating a college fund for her son and remembering her as a joyful and immensely talented performer.“Naya was more than just an actor on our show — she was our friend,” Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk and Ian Brennan said in a statement Tuesday.“Our hearts go out to her family, especially her mom, Yolanda, who was a big part of the ‘Glee’ family, and her son Josey,” the three producers said, referring to the child as “the beautiful son Naya loved most of all.”Josey is Rivera’s son with her former husband, actor Ryan Dorsey. She called the boy “my greatest success, and I will never do any better than him.”While she wasn’t initially hired as a “Glee” cast member, it “didn’t take more than an episode or two for us to realize that we had lucked into finding one of the most talented, special stars we would ever have the pleasure of working with,” the producers said.Rivera could act, sing, dance and “nail a joke as well as she could crush you with an emotional scene. ... She was a joy to write for, a joy to direct and a joy to be around,” they said.In portraying a high school student in an openly lesbian relationship on “Glee,” Rivera ensured that her character's love for her partner was “expressed with dignity, strength and with pure intentions,” the producers said.___Follow AP Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton on Twitter: https://twitter.com/andyjamesdalton.Andrew Dalton, The Associated Press

  • Summerland, B.C., family shocked and scared after swastika painted on their house
    News
    CBC

    Summerland, B.C., family shocked and scared after swastika painted on their house

    Ramesh Lekhi was doing paperwork in the living room of his Summerland, B.C., home when the sound of glass smashing brought him out of his chair.At first he thought it might be a picture frame falling off a wall. However Ramesh soon discovered someone had smashed two windows in the home he and his wife Kiran have lived in since the Indo-Canadian couple built it in 1990 on a quiet street in front of their Okanagan cherry orchard.Ramesh called the RCMP and when officers arrived he learned the vandalism was more than just smashed windows — someone had drawn a swastika along with obscene and vulgar graffiti in red spray paint on the outside of this home."When the RCMP came they showed us all these [graffiti] signs and they said, 'Look what they did to [your house].' And that was really shocking," he said.The RCMP Hate Crime Team is investigating the incident along with more swastikas that were painted overnight on a band stand in the town's Memorial Park.The vandalism and hateful graffiti have shaken the Lekhis and left them wondering who, in the community they have lived in for more than three decades, would wish to terrorize them late at night."It is really shocking. It's never happened before," Ramesh said. "I've lived in Canada for 42 years and it's never happened — any racism or anything like that. I've never had to deal with anything like that."The Lekhis' three adult children, who are all living in Vancouver, woke up at 4:30 Monday morning and drove to the Okanagan to be with their parents. Son Abhishek and his sister Shivali saw the dark red graffiti covering the side of the home they grew up in as they pulled into the driveway."My sister pretty much burst into tears and I had to take her from the car and bring her up to the house and tell her, 'It's OK. At least our parents are safe,' " Abhishek said.Seeing his home targeted with the hateful symbol and vulgarity has him wondering if he and his family were ever welcome in the Okanagan community he grew up in."It slaps you in the face and tells you that your skin is different and that you may not belong," he said.Ramesh said he hasn't made any enemies in Summerland and can't think of anyone who would wish his family harm.District of Summerland Mayor Toni Boot and some councillors came to visit the Lehki family on Tuesday morning to offer their support.Boot, the town's first Black mayor, said she has experienced racism in the predominately white agricultural community as early as when she was in preschool and still now that she is in public life. Last month someone sent an 'anti-Black' video to her district email account just days ahead of a Black Lives Matter rally in the region, she said.Boot said although it was not shocking to learn an Indo-Canadian family would be targeted with hateful graffiti, she is angered and disappointed by it."We have such beautiful, little town. At the same time though, there is ugliness underlying in our town," Boot said."To see this happening to a family that has been here over 30 years and has contributed so much to our community, it's really disappointing."RCMP investigators believe the swastika and vulgar graffiti on the Lekhis' home and the similar graffiti painted overnight in Memorial Park are connected, according to a spokesperson."This kind of hate motivated vandalism is not often seen in the close knit community of Summerland," said Sgt. David Preston in a written statement. "We understand this kind of vandalism can be disturbing to many and the Summerland RCMP is taking this very seriously."

  • John Browne steps down as Huawei UK chairman ahead of government ban
    News
    Reuters

    John Browne steps down as Huawei UK chairman ahead of government ban

    Former BP chief John Browne is stepping down as chairman of Huawei's UK operation ahead of the British government banning the Chinese company from the country's 5G networks later on Tuesday. "When Lord Browne became chairman of Huawei UK's board of directors in 2015, he brought with him a wealth of experience which has proved vital in ensuring Huawei's commitment to corporate governance in the UK," a Huawei spokesperson said.

  • Distorted image of billboard promoting racial equality leads to lesson for angry callers
    News
    CBC

    Distorted image of billboard promoting racial equality leads to lesson for angry callers

    The giant ads were intended to promote peace and racial equality in Edmonton. "Prophet Muhammad taught a white is not superior to a Black and a Black is not superior to a white, except by piety and good action," stated the electronic billboards displayed across Edmonton.But soon Pattison Outdoor Advertising, the company that owns the billboards, was bombarded by angry calls.It turned out that a distorted photo of the sign was being widely circulated on social media.In the manipulated image it's difficult to see the second "not" so the message can easily be incorrectly read as: "a Black is superior to a white."That altered message sparked a flurry of furious Islamophobic comments on social media, alongside the odd warning that the image had been tampered with.A Pattison spokesperson said the company received close to 100 calls and emails from outraged people across Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia. They demanded explanations or simply wanted to vent their anger."Many of the messages were extremely rude and offensive and some were violent and  threatening," Pattison wrote in an emailed statement provided to CBC. "There were posts claiming that the sign should be burned down, pulled down, and that if we didn't remove the ad that it would be done for us."Pattison checked the billboard to see if there was a mechanical problem but soon realized what had happened."Someone had intentionally posted a distorted, or doctored image on Facebook, claiming that the ad was racist, encouraging everyone to call our office to complain," the company said.An employee called back more than 80 people to explain that the post they had complained about was not an accurate reflection of the real ad on the billboard. "Thankfully, the overwhelming majority of people were surprised and upset to learn that they had been a victim of fake news," the statement said. Many people apologized for being too quick to anger. Some even offered to repost the correct image. "I learned something today, that all of us need to verify anything we see on [Facebook] as there are a ton of lies and post manipulation," said one post, which was shared with CBC. "Whoever posted this is an irresponsible POS."  'Don't believe what you see'The backlash contrasted sharply with the intent of the campaign that saw 15 ads, mostly electronic, go up in the Edmonton area, and two more in Grande Prairie.The Alberta Muslim Public Affairs Council (AMPAC) said the billboard initiative was launched by a group of Edmontonians in the wake of George Floyd's murder and ensuing protests to promote peace and racial equality. The five-week campaign began three weeks ago.Momin Saeed, AMPAC's executive director, praised both Pattison and others for setting the record straight. The incident provides a valuable reminder, he said."Don't believe what you see and verify information that is posted on the internet," said Saeed, who emphasized the importance of finding out if something is true before sharing it.He said the original campaign was inspired by the final sermon given by the Prophet 1,400 years ago."He wanted people to understand that it's the content of your character and your deeds that God looks at," Saeed said. "Your skin has nothing to do with it."'Alarmist perspective'MacEwan University sociology professor Irfan Chaudhry, who studies racism and discrimination, said the incident speaks to a broader divide connected to Islamophobia and xenophobia.He said the divide is often amplified by misinformation and discussions around inclusion, which some instead view as exclusion and the encroachment of non-Christian religions in Canadian society."This is a strong narrative that's played oftentimes in a lot of these right leaning and right-wing extremist groups," Chaudhry said."Just because you're being inclusive doesn't mean you're taking away from anyone or anything. But it's one of those things where when people are scared of difference or they're unfamiliar with change … that's where you get that very strong alarmist perspective."

  • Former Fiat engineer aims to put the brakes on COVID
    Science
    Reuters

    Former Fiat engineer aims to put the brakes on COVID

    Fifty years ago, he designed a braking system that helped reduce fatal car crashes. Now Mario Palazzetti has invented a device he hopes will curb the spread of COVID-19. The retired Fiat Research Centre engineer is known as Mr ABS for the anti-lock braking system he created that is now standard in all motor vehicles.

  • Science
    CBC

    Parks Canada staff forced to euthanize two wolves in one week

    Parks Canada staff have had a difficult July in Banff. They've had to euthanized two wolves in under a week. A young, emaciated male wolf was bold enough to enter a building at Sunshine Village, and was approaching people and cars in what appears to be an attempt to get food.Conservation officers had been aware of the wolf for weeks and were finally able to tranquilize and capture the animal on July 6. Bill Hunt, Parks Canada's resource conservation manager in Banff, said an older female that had been spotted numerous times in residential neighbourhoods of Banff, Canmore and Harvie Heights was captured the next day. "We did an examination of that animal and we found out that it was an older female wolf, she had had pups at some time but she wasn't lactating so she didn't have pups this year," Hunt told CBC."She had injuries indicative of fighting with other wolves and her teeth were in very poor shape, All four canines were badly worn, so it appears that she was an older animal that was either kicked out of her pack or had her position usurped by a younger female, and was on her own and was unable to take down prey or hunt for herself."  Hunt said euthanizing the animals is a decision that isn't taken lightly — a team of experts help to make the final call."It's a very difficult decision. Most of the analysis is focused on the behaviour that we have seen to date," Hunt said."So, is the animal a candidate where we could rehabilitate it and get it back into the wild so it can forage for itself? Or is it a situation where, even if we could get the animal in a little healthier shape, it's still not going to be accepted in a pack and it's not going to be able to survive on its own?" The young male was too used to the human connection to food to fend for itself in the wild, Hunt said, and the older female would not be able to hunt because of poor health and bad teeth. That means both would pose a continued risk to both people and pets.   Sarah Elmeligi is a conservationist with the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society. She said everyone using the parks has a responsibility to keep wildlife wild. "The death of these two wolves just reinforces the need for us to take responsibility as recreationists, to manage our food and any other attractants," Elmeligi said. "Keeping a clean camp and not feeding wildlife and not attracting them to us is essential." Parks Canada said that despite the two wolf deaths, the pack in Banff National Park is doing well, with five brand new pups born this spring.

  • Another casualty of COVID-19: LGBTQ bar The Beaver closes for good on Queen Street West
    Lifestyle
    CBC

    Another casualty of COVID-19: LGBTQ bar The Beaver closes for good on Queen Street West

    The west-end dive bar The Beaver, known for drag shows, trivia nights and karaoke, won't reopen after initially shutting down due to COVID-19-19 in March."We are a small, cramped bar," a staff member posted on the bar's Facebook page. "Some hate it, it's also what some of us like about it. Now it's a big hurdle."Numerous shops, restaurants, bars and performance spaces have been forced to shut down in Toronto during the pandemic. Many will be allowed to reopen when the city moves into Stage 3 of the province's reopening plan in the coming weeks, subject to certain restrictions to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.But others. like The Beaver, won't be able to serve enough patrons to be profitable under physical distancing rules, because they're too small.Owner Lynn MacNeil said he couldn't see a future, given the threat of COVID-19."I'm very sure it wouldn't have closed if the virus hadn't hit us in the way that it has."MacNeil and the late Toronto gay icon Will Munro opened The Beaver on Queen Street West in 2006. They set up shop in the location just east of Dufferin Street to show that LGBTQ spaces could exist far from the usual spots along Church Street. Munro wanted to open along Queen Street West "to make people reclaim spaces that they lived in," his brother Dave Munro said in a phone interview from St John's, Nfld.'Refusing to be relegated'"You're laying down your roots and staking your claim and letting people know exactly what you are," he explained, adding that his brother, who died of brain cancer in 2010, used to live above The Beaver. "It's a matter of being comfortable and not being ghetto-ized into one area," Munro said of his brother's thinking at the time."Refusing to be relegated." "It was really joyous," MacNeil said, recalling when they first opened the bar."You really felt like you were a part of the burgeoning subculture."He's now 64 and said he's "made peace" with letting the space go, but said current staff members are searching for another spot that's larger, "something that's a little more sensible for the current health climate," to re-invent the venue.MacNeil, who also works at live music venue Lee's Palace, says the closure represents a loss in culture happening due to the novel coronavirus."It's not just sweaty dance clubs and live rock venues," he said."It's opera and dance; we need to come up with some inventive solutions."

  • Terror suspect wages court fight for info in bid to stave off deportation
    News
    The Canadian Press

    Terror suspect wages court fight for info in bid to stave off deportation

    OTTAWA — A terrorism suspect is waging a new court fight against the federal government for information he says he needs to mount a full argument against deportation to his native Egypt and possible torture.It is just the latest twist in Mohamed Mahjoub's two-decade legal odyssey.The government is trying to remove Mahjoub, 60, using a national security certificate, claiming he was a high-ranking member of a terrorist organization.Security certificates are rarely used federal tools for removing foreign nationals suspected of links to terrorist activity or espionage.Mahjoub, married with three children, came to Canada in 1995 and attained refugee status.He once worked as deputy general manager of a farm project in Sudan run by Osama bin Laden, who would later spearhead the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.Mahjoub was arrested under a security certificate in June 2000 after being interviewed by Canada's spy agency on six occasions between August 1997 and March 1999. Each time, he denied any involvement in extremism.The Supreme Court of Canada struck down the certificate regime as unconstitutional, but the government revamped the process and issued a new certificate against Mahjoub in 2009. It has subsequently been affirmed by the courts.In January, federal officials gave Mahjoub the results of two assessments — one examining the nature and severity of his acts, the other looking at the risks he might face upon removal from Canada.A designated government official will review the assessments in deciding whether Mahjoub should be deported.But before that happens, Mahjoub wants to see all the information underpinning the assessments.Last month the Canada Border Services Agency told Mahjoub and his lawyers it would not disclose "any of the requested documents or provide any further information," says his recent filing in the Federal Court of Canada.The information is important because, if deported, Mahjoub would be sent to Egypt, "a country where he is likely to face persecution, torture and possible death," the filing says.The severity of the potential consequences mean Mahjoub is entitled to see "all relevant information," whether the government intends to rely on it or not, given the principles of natural justice and procedural fairness, his submission says.In addition, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms requires the government to disclose any information related to proceedings that have potentially severe effects on Mahjoub's life, liberty and security, it adds.Mahjoub wants the court to prohibit the immigration minister and his delegate from issuing an opinion on his deportation until the information has been disclosed and he has had a chance to make submissions on it.The government has yet to file a response to Mahjoub's arguments.This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 14, 2020.—Follow @JimBronskill on TwitterJim Bronskill , The Canadian Press

  • Charities question whether WE-run student program would have been worth the money
    News
    CBC

    Charities question whether WE-run student program would have been worth the money

    Potential partners and participants in the Canada Student Service Grant program are questioning how money from the $912 million student summer grant program was being spent by WE Charity — and whether the programming would have provided meaningful experiences for student volunteers.CBC News has been shown documents that WE Charity created as part of its role as program administrator and funds distributor. Before it withdrew from its $19.5 million contract to administer the program, WE was partnering with charities and non-profit organizations to put the student volunteers to work. Teachers were also sub-contracted to both recruit and supervise groups of students from their communities.The program set aside money for training and supervising the students, based on the number of students who signed on — a financial incentive for the charities and teachers to get as many students involved as possible.Teachers picking up this extra contract work to supplement their regular public salaries this summer were to receive $12,000 for recruiting 75 to 100 students. In rural areas, they'd only need to supervise 55 students for the same amount of money.In a statement issued to CBC News Monday, WE said the primary role of these teachers was to support students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds, or to recruit students in parts of the country with fewer volunteer opportunities.Many charities have seen their regular programming and fundraising significantly disrupted by the pandemic and have been forced to lay off staff, making it difficult for them to welcome new student volunteers. That's why up to $5 million of the program's budget was earmarked to give organizations the capacity to train and supervise volunteers.But charities appear to have been offered different amounts of money to supervise similar numbers of students.WE said the funds were being allocated among the 83 organizations that had signed up to take volunteers, based on each organization's reach (local versus national) and its ability to engage "target populations," which were defined in terms of regional diversity and whether the participants were visible minority individuals or Indigenous.Different sums for different charitiesWE was collecting information about the ethnicities of students applying for the grant.CBC News has been shown an email to a smaller charity. In it, a WE representative tells the charitable organization it could receive "up to $10,000" for supervising at least 100 students for a minimum of 100 hours.Meanwhile, another larger charity that was talking to WE about participating was told that it could receive $25,000 to host 100 students, or up to $100,000 in program funding if it could scale up to take 400 volunteers.CBC News is not identifying the charities or the individuals who provided this information because they remain interested in hosting student volunteers this summer. Operational responsibility for the grant has transferred to the government, but the program has not been cancelled — even if it has stalled for now.Danielle Keenan is a spokesperson for Bardish Chagger, the youth minister who is responsible for this program. Keenan told CBC News Monday that the government is still working diligently on a transition plan which, among other things, will determine what happens with partners and subcontractors who've already signed on to the program. Chagger said earlier this month her department wanted to proceed in a way that has as few adverse impacts on students as possible.WE told CBC that it has strongly recommended that the work begun by the partners it contracted continue.'Only positive mentions' allowedThe text of a potential partnership agreement between WE Charity and a charity that was a prospective participant in the program was shared with CBC News. It includes language requiring the partner to keep all information confidential.The program is defined in the agreement as part of the broader Canada Service Corps youth initiative that began prior to the pandemic.The agreement, which needed to be signed before an organization could receive any financial support for hosting volunteers, requires all personnel to "make only positive mentions of the project, including in public disclosures and social media."Organizations that participated were required to submit a positive quote that WE could use to promote the program, to allow their logos to be used by WE, to participate in WE-hosted launch events and to promote the program on their social media channels "at least twice" using templates WE would provide.The agreement shown to CBC News includes a specific target for the number of volunteers the charity or non-profit would oversee.Even if 100,000 students were recruited and logged enough hours to earn the maximum $5,000 grant, that would only account for $500 million of the more than $900 million allocated to the program.On Monday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was asked about the size of the government's budget relative to the number of volunteers anticipated.The prime minister insisted again that WE Charity had a network capable of making these youth placements quickly, adding that was the reason why the public service recommended contracting the project out."We'll work with other organizations and perhaps with Service Canada as a way of delivering those grants," he said, adding that the public service is working on a new delivery model to replace WE.'I've heard absolutely nothing'In their statement published in full-page newspaper ads on Monday, WE founders Craig and Marc Kielburger said their coalition of 83 not-for-profit partners was supporting 24,000 placements, "with more opportunities being added."The prime minister said Monday in French that the placements WE arranged are still available to the government "free," even though WE has pulled out of its contract.Some students who have applied online have yet to be matched with a volunteer opportunity so they can start accumulating hours. They only have until the end of October to accumulate the 500 service hours required for the maximum $5,000 grant.University of British Columbia student Amanda Dickson-Otty told CBC News that she applied for the volunteer grant program before WE decided to withdraw from the contract, and was told that the first 40,000 applicants would be assigned to a "volunteer placement manager" to match them with a specific volunteer opportunity.She said she was never told if she was to be among this first cohort, but the most recent count of applications from both WE and the federal government is 35,000 — so it appears she could be."I've heard absolutely nothing," she said, adding that she hasn't seen many new listings lately. "It doesn't exactly inspire confidence."Dickson-Otty said she prefers to work with a placement manager rather than apply directly to one posting."Honestly, since there are hundreds of placement options, it's a bit overwhelming to pick just one," she said. "What if I pick one that has hundreds of applications for two positions, instead of another suitable position that desperately needs people? What if I pick a position that, once I learn more about it, I realize I'm not actually suited for?"Whether they were to be supervised by a subcontracted teacher or a non-profit organization, WE was allowing students to earn up to one quarter of the 100 hours required to receive the minimum grant ($1,000) by completing online training modules through LinkedIn Learning.WE told CBC News that it established a mandatory five-hour "on-boarding" course, followed by optional training materials that could be used toward a further 20 hours.This training could be specific to their volunteer job this summer, but could also include skills useful later in life. The cost of developing this training was part of WE's administration contract.No work available? Make someWE representatives encouraged charities and non-profits to participate even if didn't have any work that needed doing this summer, and offered to help those organizations invent new work.WE told CBC News on Monday that "many long-standing service opportunities did not fit the safety criteria which was established as part of the program considerations."Instead, it said, it created volunteer roles that were "repositioning these organizations' needs into safe service opportunities."Teachers supervising students could match students with volunteer jobs that individual organizations were offering, or — if there weren't any suitable ones available — create new jobs from WE's suggestions of activities, which included:  * Tutoring children whose classroom learning was disrupted this spring, including the kids of front line workers. * Creating exercise information and videos for children or seniors to help them keep active while staying inside. * Making protective masks, which could then be given to children for the next school year. * Creating ways to celebrate front-line workers.  The materials WE sent to charities offer suggestions like putting "digitally savvy student volunteers" to work designing social media campaigns, creating photo and video content or doing other online research.Another role suggested making students "COVID-19 Safe Ambassadors" who could be trained on "critical social issues" like bullying, literacy or mental health and then share their knowledge as mentors in the community.Students with creative skills could "interview and write stories on behalf of seniors who have been isolated by COVID-19, to celebrate their lives and achievements, and share their wisdom and knowledge through the creation of an intergenerational capsule of community stories," WE suggested.Colleen Sharen, a Brescia University College professor in management and organization studies, said she doubts that many students — particularly those just graduating from high school — have the expertise to work as trainers."You're setting students up to have an expertise that they don't really have," she said. Social media campaigns can be great, she said, but "if you're talking about mental health and tactics to manage mental health ... there are many students who might, with all the right intentions, communicate bad information because they don't have the expertise they need to do it."Other suggested activities — like telling seniors' stories or making masks — aren't necessarily experiences that set students up for future careers, she added."I'm not sure if employers care if you sewed 100 masks during COVID," she said. "Do we really need videos on seniors stories? It's nice, but if we weren't in a pandemic we would not be paying students to do this. Is it enough value we added, or are we just creating a justification for giving students money?"Rather than pay teachers and other groups to execute this program, Sharen said it would be cheaper and more efficient to just give students in need $900 million to fund their education next year through existing programs, as the current system for government grants does now.A straight cash transfer to needy students also would have avoided claims that the federal government has designed a program that violates employment standards by paying less than minimum wage.While it's important to make sure students don't drop out of school because of financial need during the pandemic, "let's not make this more complicated than it needs to be," Sharen said.

  • Hugs in a reopened province: A refresher on COVID-19 guidelines
    Health
    CBC

    Hugs in a reopened province: A refresher on COVID-19 guidelines

    Not to burst anyone's bubble, but if New Brunswickers want to keep COVID-19 at bay, they still need to limit the number of people they hug and come into close contact with.That's what Dr. Jennifer Russell, the chief medical officer, is reminding people as they enjoy summer and the Atlantic travel bubble. Since New Brunswick joined the other Atlantic provinces in a bubble more than a week ago, there has been an air of almost-last July in places.But this July is still very different, and there are guidelines that might be forgotten as friends and family reunite after being kept apart for months. There is also your own judgment, Russell said."We each as individuals have to make our own choices about what we're comfortable with."Here are some tips.Hugs and picturesEarlier in the recovery program, the province incorporated a two-household bubble rule to allow some visiting during the pandemic, but now you can spend time with family and friends outside these old bubbles."Yes, you could hug everybody you wanted to," Dr. Jennifer Russell said. "There's no law against hugging people, but in a pandemic situation, where at any time we can see outbreaks and we have no idea how big those outbreaks will be, and to manage them, they have to be small."If you only hug one other person in two weeks or get up close to one person for a photo, then only one person will be part of your close contact list.This translates into a lesser impact on New Brunswick's health-care system and resources, public health and the economy should new cases result."This is an exponentially transmittable disease in the sense that it's based on how many close contacts you have," Russell said.This translates into a lesser impact on New Brunswick's health-care system and resources, public health and the economy should new cases result."This is an exponentially transmittable disease in the sense that it's based on how many close contacts you have," Russell said.Larger groupsUnder the current yellow phase, almost everything is allowed to open, with precautions. According to the mandatory order, owners and occupiers of land or buildings must take all reasonable steps to prevent gatherings of more than 50 people, unless they can ensure adequate screening and distancing.This includes any kind of socializing, celebration, ceremony or entertainment.People visiting from other Atlantic provinces can stay at your home, but if it's more than a few, Russell suggested visitors use tents, trailers or airbnbs."The lower the number of people, the lower the risk."Although all Atlantic provinces have seen new cases of the respiratory illness since the bubble opened July 3, the numbers are still low."That was the basis of the decision to allow the Atlantic provinces to open up, to allow people to travel without having to self-isolate for two weeks."New Brunswick's lone active case is travel-related but not connected to the Atlantic bubble.The mask rule In New Brunswick, it is mandatory to wear a mask in places where physically distancing isn't possible, and this includes  government buildings, grocery and convenience stores and other retail spots.And if you cannot physically distance or wear a mask, you must remove yourself from the situation, Russell said. New Brunswick has strong requirements in its mandatory order. However, masks are constantly being discussed both provincially and nationally, she said.Russell also recommends people have a mask and hand sanitizer on hand at all times. "We do want people to feel very comfortable wearing masks," she said.At the beach or by the poolYou still need to avoid crowds and being close to others in social settings around pools and at the beach, Russell said.She also doesn't recommend eating from buffet-style food or sharing drinks or sharing food utensils. And although it's the responsibility of establishments and businesses to offer a safe environment for patrons and staff to interact, shop and work, it's important you still use your own judgment and be prepared to leave a place that has fallen short.  "People really have to really consider their exit strategy if they aren't comfortable."In other provincesRussell said there are differences in rules and regulations in each province, based on the number of COVID-19 cases, but the risk of transmitting COVID-19 among these provinces is considered low at the moment.That doesn't mean you should let your guard down. An outbreak could happen at any time."We still need to stay vigilant and we still need to self-monitor for symptoms."Some fun mattersTo protect mental health, Russell encourages everyone, including seniors, to socialize and participate in activities.It is also important to acknowledge the people you're spending time with and to know whether they are at high risk of COVID-19 because of medical conditions or have close contacts working in institutional settings. What happens now?As the pandemic continues to evolve, people who work in public health are learning more about the virus and updating rules and regulations..Russell said there is still a risk for a second wave of COVID-19 in New Brunswick. But it's important New Brunswickers do their part to remain in the yellow phase rather than be required to move backward.This requires frequent hand washing and keeping a distance of at least two metres until a vaccine is found. "There's going to be a bit of an on-off switch of how we respond and react."

  • West-end councillor asks for systemic racism report, more inclusive street names
    News
    CBC

    West-end councillor asks for systemic racism report, more inclusive street names

    A Windsor city councillor wants to look at more inclusive naming practices for streets and buildings.Ward 2 Coun. Fabio Costante asked for a report to be prepared on systemic racism, during Monday's council meeting. He wants there to be an acknowledgement from the city of its historic and systemic racism."We understand that to move forward and promote equity and eliminate anti-racism requires reaching out to and hearing from the voices of those in our community and corporation most impacted by discrimination and racism."Costante also wants city administration and the diversity advisory committee to look at hiring and advancement practices.The ask comes after a Black historian spoke with CBC Windsor about street names — particularly in Sandwich Town — named after slave owners. Askin, Labadie, Peter, Russell and Baby are all streets named after prominent figures in Windsor's history who also owned slaves at some point."What we accept, what we honour, who we choose to honour says a lot about what we value as a society and maybe it's time to take a look at some of those," said Irene Moore Davis, president of the Essex County Black Historical Research Society.Moore Davis suggested that instead of renaming the streets, the city might consider an alternative route. "It's better to educate people about the street names and the people and everyone who was involved — both the slave owners and the enslaved — and what their roles were and how those other individuals have been overlooked in the story of how this community was founded," said Moore Davis."It may be more constructive actually to leave the street names and focus on what's been excluded to date and what we can learn from that. It's all a conversation worth having."Founder of The Bloomfield House in the city's west end and advocate within the city's Black community, Teajai Travis, said he was disturbed to learn Peter and Russell streets were named after a man who owned slaves. "I'd like to see full acknowledgement of the damage that these monuments cause, the generational trauma that people have to experience on a day-to-day basis, being reminded of that oppressive legacy," he said to CBC Windsor Morning host Tony Doucette. "Change the names of the streets."Travis said the city needs to hire more people from Black and other marginalized communities so that decisions being made are fully inclusive."What I'm hopeful for is we can really move forward and see some material changes," he said. "It's a step in the right direction."

  • With uptick in COVID-19 cases, Quebec could be forced to choose between schools and bars
    Health
    CBC

    With uptick in COVID-19 cases, Quebec could be forced to choose between schools and bars

    When Premier François Legault announced Monday that masks will soon be mandatory across Quebec, he also confirmed that the province is witnessing a slight increase in the number of reported cases of COVID-19. After having dropped almost steadily since mid-May, the five-day rolling average of new cases began to rise in late June. Quebec is now registering about 100 new cases per day. While that's far from the peak of around 1,000 new cases per day the province saw two months ago, public health officials are nevertheless concerned. At Monday's news conference in Montreal, Legault pointed out that unlike at the height of the first wave, the new cases are turning up almost entirely in the general population, as opposed to in long-term care homes. The increase has coincided with the reopening of bars and nightclubs in the Montreal area. Health officials in the city have linked nine bars to about a dozen cases.In a buzzkill worse than Sunday morning, the officials are now asking everyone who's been to a Montreal bar in the past month to get tested.With the number of new cases headed in the wrong direction, Legault's announcement that, starting Saturday, masks will be mandatory in enclosed public spaces — like stores, bars and restaurants — came as little surprise. The reaction from infectious disease specialists, who've been calling for the measure for weeks, was closer to relief."Better late than never," said Dr. Karl Weiss, who heads the infectious diseases department at Montreal's Jewish General Hospital.   Bars are risky businessThat new provincewide mask rule (Montreal already announced its own) is part of a series of restrictions Quebec has been forced to introduce since it began lifting the lockdown.Last week, it added more rules for bars to follow if they want to stay open, including an earlier last call and serving even fewer clients at a time.  Bar owners, obviously, aren't thrilled. They're only just getting used to being open again, and already the government is adding burdens to their business.But the science is against them."Bars are enclosed spaces, and that's where the risk of transmission is highest," said Benoît Mâsse, an epidemiologist at the Université de Montréal."[Drinking in a bar] is a type of activity that is riskiest in terms of propagating the virus."Which raises the question of why bars and nightclubs were allowed to reopen in the first place, especially given Montreal has been the Canadian epicentre of the pandemic.schoolsbeforebarsThere are widespread concerns — not just in Quebec but across North America — that elected officials have jeopardized the return of children to classrooms this fall by seeking to salvage a nightlife in the summer.On social media, this concern has been given the pithy hashtag schoolsbeforebars.The argument, stated roughly, is that as major drivers of transmission, bars, nightclubs and parties could cause a big enough spike in COVID-19 cases to warrant keeping schools closed even longer.Doing so would entail significant social costs that must be considered alongside the loss of revenues to bar owners. In a widely read op-ed published in the Globe and Mail this month, gender equality consultant Lauren Dobson-Hughes noted it is women and lower-income children who will likely bear the burden if schools are forced to stay closed. "The lack of affordable child care, especially for low-income and racialized families, was already unsustainable," she wrote. "It is now a crisis for many. We must make the safe return to school a political and national priority."In Quebec, only elementary school children outside the greater Montreal area were able to return to classrooms this spring.Summer day camps, moreover, have had to reduce their offerings because of staffing shortages and space constraints, further complicating child care for parents.WATCH | 2 pandemics tell the story of the role women play in times of crisis:As it stands, Quebec's plan is to have children return to classrooms in the fall, though with several restrictions. Education Minister Jean-François Roberge, for instance, has warned that students in Grades 10 and 11 may have to do some of their schooling online if the public health situation worsens. The recent uptick in cases has reinforced just how delicate the situation is in Quebec, and in Montreal in particular.If the current trend continues, pressure will mount quickly on Legault to sacrifice the livelihoods of some business owners in order to protect not only a generation of young minds, but the province's hard-won gains for gender equality as well.

  • India quizzing owners of banned Chinese apps over content and practices
    News
    Reuters

    India quizzing owners of banned Chinese apps over content and practices

    Chinese companies such as TikTok-owner ByteDance have been asked by India to answer 77 questions about their apps that have been banned by New Delhi, including whether they censored content, worked on behalf of foreign governments or lobbied influencers. India's Information Technology Ministry has given the companies three weeks to respond to the questionnaire, which has been seen by Reuters, and said unspecified follow-up action would be taken, two sources said. India last month banned the apps following a border clash between soldiers from the two countries, which left 20 Indian soldiers dead.

  • COVID-19 in Canada: 'I love the Americans, I don’t want them up here,' Ford says, vaccine may not be available until 2021
    News
    Yahoo News Canada

    COVID-19 in Canada: 'I love the Americans, I don’t want them up here,' Ford says, vaccine may not be available until 2021

    As cases of COVID-19 continue to spread around the world, Canadians are concerned about their health and safety.

  • Cat stalks chicken coop, tries to make new friends
    News
    Rumble

    Cat stalks chicken coop, tries to make new friends

    Roxy is a very curious cat and is always trying to figure out what is going on over there. She saw that there was a different smell coming from the coop so she went to investigate the strange scent, and discovered there were three living and moving things. Roxy crept closer to them, not knowing if she needed to attack them, protect us, or just leave them be. She decided to watch them and see what they would do. As she intensely watched them, she let down her guard a bit and then proceeded to studied theses strange animal’s behaviour. Roxy sat and watched the chickens patiently as they strutted around the pen. With no other action going on between the chickens and her, it turned out that they were both curious with each other.

  • Meghan Markle's 1st Public Speech Post-Exit Was All About Calling Out Power
    Celebrity
    HuffPost Canada

    Meghan Markle's 1st Public Speech Post-Exit Was All About Calling Out Power

    “The status quo is easy to excuse, and it’s hard to break. But it will pull tightest right before snapping.”

  • Buckingham Palace Selling Homemade Gin To Make Up For Pandemic Losses
    Celebrity
    HuffPost Canada

    Buckingham Palace Selling Homemade Gin To Make Up For Pandemic Losses

    Time to get a taste of that royal life.

  • Feds should have put $912M into Canada Summer Jobs program: Opposition
    News
    The Canadian Press

    Feds should have put $912M into Canada Summer Jobs program: Opposition

    OTTAWA — Federal opposition parties are demanding to know why the Liberal government created a $900-million program to help students find volunteer positions rather than putting the much-needed funds into an existing summer jobs program.The call for answers comes as the government tries to chart a way forward for the new Canada Student Services Grant, which has been in limbo after WE Charity withdrew from administering the program amid controversy over its links to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his family.The Liberals have billed the grant program as a way to reward tens of thousands of students who want to help with the COVID-19 pandemic and can't find paid work. Participants were told they could earn up to $5,000 toward their education costs by volunteering the maximum 500 hours.Opposition parties say the Liberals could have accomplished the same task without controversy by putting the money into the Canada Summer Jobs program, through which thousands of positions for students are subsidized by the federal government every year."The government chose specifically to ignore the opportunity of the Canada Summer Jobs and instead went for this," Conservative economic development critic Dan Albas said of the Canada Student Services Grant."It makes no sense ... They put a ton of money — $912 million — towards an untested concept when they have a ready-to-go program."The Liberals have expanded the summer-jobs program by increasing the wage subsidy available to companies and not-for-profit groups to 100 per cent of the local minimum wage, expanding what types of positions qualified and extending the eligible work period to early next year.Employment Minister Carla Qualtrough's office also noted the Liberals injected an extra $60 million to create 10,000 more positions than last year for students. The move brought the total budget for the program to $323 million and the expected number of summer jobs to 80,000."This additional investment is helping more youth stay connected to the labour market, save money for their return to school, and find quality jobs in safe, inclusive, and healthy work environments," Qualtrough spokeswoman Ashley Michnowski said in an email."By adapting the program this year, our government is making sure that we have the resources needed to support Canadian workers, businesses, and communities dealing with the social and economic impacts of COVID-19."But the opposition says the available funding is not enough to cover demand in a normal year. The federal Employment and Social Development Department itself says on its website that in 2019, "requests for funding totalled more than three times the program budget."Neither the government nor WE have said how many volunteer positions they were expecting to fill through the $912-million grant program. There has been criticism that participants receive only $10 per hour — less than the minimum wage in any province.There have also been questions about many positions advertised as available through the volunteer scheme, including thousands for students to shoot videos, make websites and create other content in placements apparently created by WE to meet the requirements of the volunteer program.NDP ethics critic Charlie Angus said that stands in contrast to the summer jobs program after the government asked members of Parliament across the country to identify potential positions in their ridings in the spring — many of which did not get funding."We had really legitimate organizations ready to hire students to do legitimate work, and all of that was sidelined," Angus said. "These were a lot more credible positions than making a video showing how to do exercises."The Liberals have indicated they plan to move ahead with the volunteer program despite WE's withdrawal, saying the federal Employment Department has taken over and is looking at ways to make it happen.But the Conservatives, NDP and Greens all say the government should learn its lesson and put the money into the Canada Summer Jobs program, which is already managed by the government and has a history of success.That starts with revisiting what the Tories and New Democrats suggested was the large number of summer jobs requested by businesses and not-for-profits and not funded because of a shortage of money."The government should be focused on a program that is transparent, that is fair, that is broadly supported by all parties, and that already has a number of applications that have been ranked and have not been filled just because there's not enough money," Albas said.Green MP Elizabeth May said organizations that applied for positions through the student-volunteer program should also be allowed to transfer their requests to the summer-jobs program.And if that is not possible, Angus said, the government should be looking at taking the money and putting it into direct financial support for students, including by adding the funds to the Canada Emergency Student Benefit for those unable to find work due to COVID-19."They have two options: One is to put that money into Canada Summer Jobs and one is to put it straight into the support for university students so they have the funds necessary to go to school and cut out all these schemes they worked out with WE," he said."I think they need to move on this immediately. The summer is getting close to half over. It may be at this point too difficult to get the Canada Summer Jobs up, but there are a lot of organizations that we submitted names for."Bloc Quebecois Leader Yves-Francois Blanchet, meanwhile, repeated a call on Tuesday for Trudeau to step aside in favour of his deputy Chrystia Freeland while the WE affair is fully investigated. But Blanchet said that based on what's known now, he doesn't believe the Liberal government should fall over it.This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 14, 2020.Lee Berthiaume, The Canadian Press

  • Bill that would add Indigenous languages teaching to all schools wins all-party support
    News
    CBC

    Bill that would add Indigenous languages teaching to all schools wins all-party support

    A bill that would require New Brunswick schools to teach Indigenous languages to all students has won unanimous support from a committee of MLAs.Members from all four parties voted on Tuesday afternoon in favour of the bill, which was introduced last month by Green Party MLA Megan Mitton."There's a long history of Indigenous languages being systematically excluded from our public school system," Mitton said during the debate."This is an opportunity for the revitalization of Wabanaki languages in our public school system."The bill would add a requirement for the teaching of Indigenous languages to a section of the Education Act that already requires the teaching of Indigenous history and culture.That section was adopted in 2017 through a bill by Green Party Leader David Coon.Mitton said the goal was not to make all New Brunswick schoolchildren fluent in the languages but to "foster an understanding" about the languages.Progressive Conservative, Liberal and People's Alliance MLAs all spoke in favour of Mitton's bill Tuesday afternoon. No one opposed it."This is all part of a very necessary process that this province and this country needs to undertake as we examine issues around systemic racism in our country and society," said Education Minister Dominic Cardy.."Clearly, in New Brunswick, our biggest challenge as a society is examining the serious issues that have affected our First Nations communities now for hundreds of years."Few speakersMitton said there are fewer than 100 Wolastoqey speakers and fewer than 200 who speak Mi'kmaq. Last year the federal government passed an Indigenous Languages Act in response to calls from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission for the preservation and revitalization of Indigenous languages.The law sets out a funding system for those languages.Calls for inquiryMitton introduced her bill June 16, amid calls by First Nations chiefs for the Higgs government to establish an inquiry into how Indigenous people are treated by police and the justice system.Those calls came after the death of two Indigenous people, Chantel Moore and Rodney Levi, in two separate shootings by police. Both incidents are being investigated by Quebec's independent agency that reviews police shootings.Aboriginal Affairs Minister Jake Stewart supports the idea of an inquiry but has yet to persuade Premier Blaine Higgs.Cardy said Tuesday the language bill was "our opportunity as legislators to be part of moving toward some form of redress but also establishing some sort of foundation for a more harmonious relationship going into the future." He introduced an amendment to, as he put it, "broaden the scope" of Mitton's bill.It added the Passamaquoddy people to the existing section of the act and changed the word "Maliseet" to "Wolastoqiyik." It also changed the wording of a phrase that requires the province to "respond to the unique needs" of Mi'kmaq, Wolastoqi and Passamaquoddy children.That section applies only to on-reserve schools run by the province under agreements with chiefs and band councils, but Cardy's change means if the bill passes, it will apply to off-reserve Indigenous children as well. Liberal MLA Chuck Chiasson and People's Alliance MLA Michelle Conroy both supported Mitton's bill but asked how it will be implemented.Mitton said the goal of her legislation wasn't to prescribe a specific approach but to create a general requirement."The department would then need to work on the curriculum and on implementing, while doing consultation" with First Nations, she said. "There are different ways this could look."

  • Manitoba sees first new COVID-19 cases in two weeks, pitches for tourists
    News
    The Canadian Press

    Manitoba sees first new COVID-19 cases in two weeks, pitches for tourists

    WINNIPEG — Manitoba's 13-day streak without new COVID-19 infections ended Tuesday as health officials reported five additional cases, including that of an airline passenger.The individual was on a WestJet flight from Winnipeg to Calgary on June 27 and on a return flight on July 2. All passengers on those flights are being asked to monitor themselves for symptoms, the Health Department said. Investigations into how the five contracted the novel coronavirus are continuing.Even with the new cases, Manitoba remains among the provinces with the lowest infection rates, with 330 confirmed and probable cases. No one was in hospital with the virus as of Tuesday and five cases were active.The Progressive Conservative government has relied on the low numbers to reopen most businesses and relax many restrictions on public gatherings in recent weeks.More recently, the province began a new tourism push to attract visitors from northwestern Ontario and the other western provinces. Provincial and Winnipeg tourism and economic development agencies released a video this week asking residents to promote the city as a place open for business and visitors.The announcement was criticized by some on social media who noted that COVID-19 numbers are much higher in Saskatchewan and Alberta."We appreciate these concerns. Our marketing continues to align with current government travel restrictions and safety protocols and takes into consideration the advice of the public health officer," Travel Manitoba said in a social media post.Manitoba initially required anyone entering from other provinces to self-isolate for 14 days, but lifted that requirement last month for people coming from northern Ontario, the northern territories and provinces to the west.Premier Brian Pallister said it's a matter of balance."None of us here in government or anywhere else, I don't think, are advocating that we stop being conscious of the (rules), and following them is really critical," Pallister said."We have to stick to the fundamentals here, but we can't allow a continued shutdown of every aspect of our economy to threaten the very future of our quality of life."The Opposition New Democrats appeared to support the idea of boosting visitors."By using the balanced approach where we prioritize the health and safety of Manitobans, as well as opening up our economy to tourists, (it) will allow us to be successful in Manitoba," New Democrat legislature member Jamie Moses said.Pallister also said he is looking to the federal government to help the economy by changing its Canada Emergency Response Benefit.The program offers $2,000 per month to people who have lost work because of the pandemic, but Pallister said it has become a disincentive for people to return to the job market because the benefit is cut off after people earn $1,000 a month.Pallister said the federal government should instead reduce the benefit gradually as people's incomes rise. He has written to other premiers in the hope of getting them to pressure Ottawa together.He also wants the other premiers to join him in asking the federal government to allow more businesses to qualify for wage subsidies during the pandemic."As our recovery moves forward, our labour force must grow and we must help grow our labour force," he said.This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 14, 2020Steve Lambert, The Canadian Press

  • What's with all the cars parked at Ottawa's EY Centre?
    Business
    CBC

    What's with all the cars parked at Ottawa's EY Centre?

    With the vast majority of flights in and out of the Ottawa International Airport grounded and large indoor gatherings on hold, people passing the EY Centre recently have been struck by a curious sight — a parking lot crammed with vehicles.No, it's not a convention or a trade show — those are likely still a long way off, even as COVID-19 restrictions gradually loosen.The vehicles filling the vast lot on Uplands Drive are rentals from the nearby airport, sitting idle because there are very few visitors looking to drive them.An official from the EY Centre confirmed to CBC the lot is being used as overflow parking for rental vehicles during the pandemic. The conference facility isn't charging for the space, just being a "friendly neighbour," according to the official.With borders closed, more people working from home and many tourist attractions closed, demand for rental cars has dropped off significantly. "Earlier on, when travel had come to a virtual standstill, and reservations declined, we parked many of our vehicles not in use," said spokesperson Lisa Martini of Enterprise Holdings, the parent company of Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental, Alamo and Enterprise.Martini said the companies are starting to see a slow but steady recovery in vehicle rentals for summer travel.That's good, because eventually the EY Centre is going to need its parking lot back as conventions and trade shows resume.

  • Dozens of MPs, senators call for sanctions against China over human rights abuses
    News
    CBC

    Dozens of MPs, senators call for sanctions against China over human rights abuses

    Sixty-eight MPs and senators have added their names to a letter to the prime minister demanding that Canada levy sanctions on top Chinese officials in response to human rights abuses perpetrated against Uighur Muslims and pro-democracy advocates in Hong Kong.The letter, signed by 64 MPs, four senators and various community leaders, is the latest attempt by some parliamentarians to put pressure on the government to take a tougher stand against China.The letter has been signed by two Liberal backbenchers — Judy Sgro and John McKay — and MPs from all of the other parties, including Green Party parliamentary leader Elizabeth May and a substantial portion of the Conservative caucus.Two of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's appointments to the Senate, Marilou McPhedran and Pierre Dalphond, also have signed their names to the list of Canadian lawmakers pushing for some sort of punitive action against the regime in Beijing.McKay told CBC News he can't stay silent as China persecutes the Uighur minority through the "virtual enslavement and imprisonment of an entire population" and dismantles the hard-won democratic rights of Hong Kongers."There's no accommodation that you can make with China," he said, adding that Beijing's violations of human rights should be countered by financial manoeuvres that hit its officials where it hurts.He said he was a "little slow" in coming around to the belief that China's abuses — and its arbitrary detention on Canadians Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor — must be met with some sort of response beyond diplomacy."It's a colossal bully play by an emergent power and there's only one way to deal with a bully," McKay said of China's move to charge the two Canadians.While China will be angered by any sanctions — China's ambassador to Canada has promised "very firm countermeasures" if Ottawa goes that route — McKay said Canada must take a stand in the face of "warrior diplomacy nonsense.""I think you have to anticipate blowback. We have our vulnerabilities," he said. "But you either start drawing lines in the sand or you just keep getting trampled."I think the sooner that we recognize that we are in a form of asymmetrical conflict, warfare, with the government of China, the more we're able to strategically deal with it."He said Canada and its Western allies should present a united front against China and adopt a NATO-like approach so that aggressive posturing by Beijing is met with a policy of "an attack on one is an attack on all." 'Blatant human rights atrocities'The letter-writing campaign calling for sanctions was organized by the Alliance Canada Hong Kong (ACHK), a group of pro-democracy Hong Kongers in Canada.The letter writers say Ottawa should deploy the Sergei Magnitsky Act to target Chinese officials.The law allows the government to impose financial and other restrictions on foreign nationals responsible for, or complicit in, violating internationally recognized human rights.The letter quotes Foreign Affairs Minister François-Philippe Champagne, who said earlier this month that "sanctions are an important tool to hold perpetrators of gross human rights violations to account.""As a leader on the international human rights discussion, to invoke Magnitsky sanctions against these officials is a strong and symbolic action that is consistent with how Canada has applied this act in the past," the letter reads."Canada needs to take a strong stance against blatant human rights atrocities and coordinate a multilateral effort amongst countries with shared values to reclaim our leadership on the global stage."The law also allows the government to freeze assets owned by foreign nationals and prohibit financial transactions by known human rights abusers. The law is named after Russian tax adviser Sergei Magnitsky, who was tortured and died in a Moscow prison after documenting fraud in Russia.Canada has used the legislation to sanction human rights abusers from Russia and Venezuela, preventing them from using the Canadian banking system.China's detention of Uighur Muslims, its attack on democratic rights in Hong Kong, its decades-long repression of Tibet and its imprisonment of two Michaels have been cited as reasons for the federal government to employ the Magnitsky Act, which was passed into law in Canada in 2017.Last fall, a leak of internal Chinese government documents to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) painted a stark picture of Uighur concentration camps, which have been built across the Xinjiang region over the past three years.The Muslim minority is routinely subjected to intrusive government surveillance, intimidating phone calls and even death threats, according to Amnesty International.A recent report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute found that thousands of Muslims have been used as forced labour in factories that supply companies like BMW, Nike and Huawei, among others.China's ambassador to Canada has called these camps — where as many as one million ethnic Muslims are subjected to compulsory ideological lessons under the watchful eye of party officials — "vocational training centres."The National People's Congress, China's rubber-stamp Communist-controlled parliament, has introduced a national security and anti-sedition law in Hong Kong. The law essentially does away with the city's independent legal system and allows Beijing to override local laws.Advocates say China's Hong Kong policy is a clear violation of its international obligations under the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration, which guaranteed a "one country, two systems" framework following the handover of Hong Kong from Britain to China.

  • Great Dane bewildered by cat chilling on computer
    Technology
    Rumble

    Great Dane bewildered by cat chilling on computer

    Jack really enjoys his cat naps beside the computer. Mikey discovers Jack as he stretches out two paws onto the laptop from behind the curtain of invisibility.