The U.S. House of Representatives delivered to the Senate on Monday a charge that former President Donald Trump incited insurrection in a speech to supporters before the deadly attack on the Capitol, setting in motion his second impeachment trial. Nine House Democrats who will serve as prosecutors in Trump's trial, accompanied by the clerk of the House and the acting sergeant at arms, carried the charge against Trump to the Senate in a solemn procession across the Capitol. Wearing masks to protect against COVID-19, they filed through the ornate Capitol Rotunda and into the Senate chamber, following the path that a mob of Trump supporters took on Jan. 6 as they clashed with police.
Sinéad Clarke’s Irish Design House in Toronto’s Riverside district had a website before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, but she admits it wasn’t that useful since most customers want to touch the curated artisan imports she sells. But it has become the subject of intense focus for the young business owner since, including one particularly frantic weekend in November after Premier Doug Ford’s Friday announcement of tighter restrictions that would force the store closed that Monday. Clarke and her partner Benny, a graphic designer, worked into the early mornings to stock virtual shelves with handmade pottery, weaving, silversmithing, tailoring, screen-printing and other products sourced from dozens of Irish craftspeople. That weekend, they also set up bookings for 20-minute virtual video-shopping experiences that she credits with boosting Christmas sales. She felt she had little choice. “That's not an option,” Clarke said when asked whether she’d consider walking away. “Not that it's not an option, but I really hope it's not because I’ve put too much into this to just close. So we'll try everything from every different angle.” That included a fast pivot to mask-making in the early days, when sales dried up overnight. Initially donating them all to hospitals and care homes, she later added a donate button to the store's website so others could help shoulder the costs, then sharing the sewing work by giving volunteers fabric kits to help out. Eventually, she started selling them to help cover mounting back-rent payments and other costs. “That’s how we made it through the first lockdown,” Clarke recalled in a video interview. “If I didn't do that, I wouldn't be here now.” The 36-year designer’s struggles to keep her business solvent are shared by small business owners across the city and beyond, but she said the longevity of her goods provide some breathing room. “At least if it doesn't sell, it's not the end of the world. It's here and paid for and I can have it for next year at least,” she said, about the inventory she ordered in the summer for the end-of-year shopping season. “For a restaurant, food spoils. This doesn't spoil.” Clarke had been offering one-on-one sewing lessons and designing her own brand of sustainable clothing at the back of the store when the pandemic hit. She has put that work on hold — and cancelled her usual summer camp for kids — to focus on the demands of keeping the main business running. Clarke is determined to carry on, but worries 2021 will see a slump as customers stop spending as lockdowns drag on. She also doesn’t know what will happen when she gives birth to her first kid, due in April. “I'm too stubborn to let that happen, so I'll work as hard as I can, but it's really scary. It still is,” she said. Clarke said the support of loyal customers has helped her keep the faith. On that weekend back in November, Clarke decided to extend Sunday's store hours of noon to 5 p.m. to 10 a.m to 9 p.m., and when she arrived to open up, there were customers waiting. “That was amazing, to see the support,” she said. “That was unreal, and that’s what keeps you going. We know that the support is out there.” Alastair Sharp, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, National Observer
The latest news on COVID-19 developments in Canada (all times eastern):10:35 a.m.There are 1,958 new cases of COVID-19 reported in Ontario today and 43 more deaths attributed to the novel coronavirus.Health Minister Christine Elliott says 727 of the new cases are in Toronto, 365 in Peel Region, and 157 in York Region. She says nearly 36,000 tests were completed since Sunday's report.Ontario also reports that 2,448 more cases of COVID-19 are considered resolved. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 25, 2021. The Canadian Press
POLITIQUE. Réagissant à l’intimidation envers des élus et la dégradation du climat politique observée dans de nombreuses municipalités, l’Union des municipalités du Québec (UMQ) lance une campagne nationale ayant pour thème «La démocratie dans le respect, par respect pour la démocratie». «De plus en plus, nous observons une multiplication de déclarations agressives et de gestes d’intimidation à l’égard des élues et élus municipaux, particulièrement sur les médias sociaux. Cela nuit au climat politique dans de nombreuses municipalités. Ce phénomène a pris de l’ampleur en 2020 en lien avec la crise sanitaire. La présence d'opinions divergentes est essentielle pour une société démocratique saine. Cependant, on veut, par cette initiative, rappeler que le partage d’idées et la diversité de points de vue doivent s’exprimer dans le respect, la tolérance et la civilité», soutient la présidente de l’UMQ et mairesse de Sainte-Julie, Suzanne Roy, en indiquant que les municipalités du Québec seront invitées à adopter une déclaration d’engagement. «Ce geste est important. On veut prendre soin collectivement de notre démocratie. Rappelons-nous que les élues et élus et les titulaires de charges publiques s’engagent quotidiennement pour le mieux-être de leur population. Il faut favoriser l’engagement politique, et non pas le décourager», ajoute la présidente de l’UMQ. La campagne de l’UMQ sera complétée par un plan d’action. Par exemple, on y proposera des activités dans le programme de formation continue de l’UMQ pour les élus municipaux ainsi que des règles types sur la nétiquette dans les médias sociaux. Stéphane Lévesque, Initiative de journalisme local, L'Hebdo Journal
KITZBÜHEL, Austria — Austrian skier Vincent Kriechmayr bounced back from two disappointing results in downhill over the weekend to win a men’s World Cup super-G on Monday, while Toronto's Jack Crawford posted a career-best sixth-place finish. Kriechmayr didn’t have a clean run but he charged all the way down the Streifalm course to edge Marco Odermatt of Switzerland by 0.12 seconds. Kriechmayr posted the fastest time in the final downhill training on Thursday but failed to replicate the same speed in the races. He finished ninth on Friday and 17th on Sunday in the two downhills, which were both won by Beat Feuz of Switzerland. “I’m really proud about my race today and about my skiing,” Kriechmayr said. “After the downhill races, this is pretty cool.” Jeffrey Read of Canmore, Alta., was 18th and Brodie Seger of North Vancouver, B.C., was 21st. "Today was simple. I executed my plan and tried to have no expectations," Crawford said. "This is the first time all the boys have been in the top 30 together and it has to be the best day for us as a team." Feuz was more than 2.3 seconds off the lead in Monday’s race when he missed a gate and didn't finish. With the race rescheduled from Sunday, temperatures were significantly lower than in previous days, making for an icier surface full of bumps. Kriechmayr mastered the difficult conditions for his seventh career victory, but first of the season. “It was a good run. It wasn’t without mistakes but I was pretty much on the limit,” the Austrian said. “I wanted to come down without compromises. I’d rather go out than finish one or two seconds behind again.” The result sent him to the top of the discipline standings, overtaking Aleksander Aamodt Kilde and Mauro Caviezel, who are both out with injuries. Ryan Cochran-Siegle, another super-G winner this season, was also missing. The American sustained a minor neck fracture in a downhill crash on Friday. Kriechmayr trailed Caviezel by three points in the standings last year when the season was cancelled amid the coronavirus pandemic. The Austrian didn't read too much in getting the red bib as the discipline leader. “Last year, it was my goal, but I missed the globe (by) three points," Kriechmayr said. "Now I just want to ski my way, to be as fast as possible. That’s it." Austrian teammate Matthias Mayer placed third on Monday, 0.55 off the lead, for his third podium in four days. Christof Innerhofer trailed Mayer by four-hundredths of a second as the Italian finished fourth, just behind the Austrian for a second straight day. Alexis Pinturault, who sat out the two downhills this weekend, skied into 12th position to strengthen his lead in the overall standings. Kjetil Jansud, who won the race last year, continued his rough season by failing to finish his run. The Norwegian misjudged a jump and lacked direction to make a gate shortly afterward. Over the weekend, he placed 18th and 26th in the downhills. Dominik Paris lost hope of another strong result a few seconds into his run. The Italian, who has won four races in Kitzbühel in the past, slid away in a sharp right turn. He avoided falling with his hand in the snow but was slowed and finished more than two seconds off the lead. Nils Allègre had an awkward crash that sent him through two rows of safety nets, but the Frenchman got up and seemed unhurt. The race was interrupted again when Italian skier Davide Cazzaniga had to be taken off the hill by helicopter with an apparent right knee injury. The men’s World Cup continues with three slaloms: a night race in Schladming, Austria, on Tuesday and two events in Chamonix, France, this weekend. ___ More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — Federal law enforcement officials are examining a number of threats aimed at members of Congress as the second trial of former President Donald Trump nears, including ominous chatter about killing legislators or attacking them outside of the U.S. Capitol, a U.S. official told The Associated Press. The threats, and concerns that armed protesters could return to sack the Capitol anew, have prompted the U.S. Capitol Police and other federal law enforcement to insist thousands of National Guard troops remain in Washington as the Senate moves forward with plans for Trump's trial, the official said. The shocking insurrection at the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob prompted federal officials to rethink security in and around its landmarks, resulting in an unprecedented lockdown for Biden's inauguration. Though the event went off without any problems and armed protests around the country did not materialize, the threats to lawmakers ahead of Trump's trial exemplified the continued potential for danger. Similar to those intercepted by investigators ahead of Biden’s inauguration, the threats that law enforcement agents are tracking vary in specificity and credibility, said the official, who had been briefed on the matter. Mainly posted online and in chat groups, the messages have included plots to attack members of Congress during travel to and from the Capitol complex during the trial, according to the official. The official was not authorized to discuss an ongoing investigation publicly and spoke Sunday to the AP on condition of anonymity. Law enforcement officials are already starting to plan for the possibility of armed protesters returning to the nation's capital when Trump’s Senate trial on a charge of inciting a violent insurrection begins the week of Feb. 8. It would be the first impeachment trial of a former U.S. president. Though much of the security apparatus around Washington set up after the Jan. 6 riot and ahead of Biden’s inauguration — it included scores of military checkpoints and hundreds of additional law enforcement personnel — is no longer in place, about 7,000 members of the National Guard will remain to assist federal law enforcement, officials said. Gen. Dan Hokanson, chief of the National Guard Bureau, said Monday that about 13,000 Guard members are still deployed in D.C., and that their numbers would shrink to 7,000 by the end of this week. John Whitley, the acting secretary of the Army, told a Pentagon news conference that this number is based on requests for assistance from the Capitol Police, the Park Police, the Secret Service and the Metropolitan Police Department. Whitley said the number is to drop to 5,000 by mid-March. Thousands of Trump’s supporters descended on the Capitol on Jan. 6 as Congress met to certify Biden as the winner of the 2020 presidential race. More than 800 are believed to have made their way into the Capitol during the violent siege, pushing past overwhelmed police officers. The Capitol police said they planned for a free speech protest, not a riot, and were caught off guard despite intelligence suggesting the rally would descend into a riot. Five people died in the melee, including a Capitol police officer who was struck in the head with a fire extinguisher. At least five people facing federal charges have suggested they believed they were taking orders from Trump when they marched on Capitol Hill to challenge the certification of Biden’s election victory. But now those comments, captured in interviews with reporters and federal agents, are likely to take centre stage as Democrats lay out their case. More than 130 people have been charged by federal prosecutors for their roles in the riot. In recent weeks, others have been arrested after posting threats against members of Congress. They include a Proud Boys supporter who authorities said threatened to deploy “three cars full of armed patriots” to Washington, threatened harm against Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Ga., and who is accused of stockpiling military-style combat knives and more than 1,000 rifle rounds in his New York home. A Texas man was arrested this week for taking part in the riot at the Capitol and for posting violent threats, including a call to assassinate Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y ___ Associated Press writer Lolita C. Baldor contributed to this report. Michael Balsamo, The Associated Press
Ontario reported another 1,958 cases of COVID-19 on Monday, as experts heading the province's vaccination campaign outlined how they are responding to delays in the delivery of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. The new cases include 727 in Toronto, 365 in Peel Region and 157 in York Region. They come one year after the first confirmed infection of the novel coronavirus in Canada was found in a patient in Toronto. Other public health units that saw double-digit increases yesterday were: Windsor-Essex: 85 Niagara Region: 82 Durham Region: 62 Hamilton: 55 Halton Region: 54 Ottawa: 51 Middlesex-London: 46 Simcoe Muskoka: 41 Waterloo Region: 39 Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph: 35 Huron-Perth: 29 Southwestern: 28 Chatham-Kent: 22 Lambton: 19 Eastern Ontario: 11 Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge: 11 (Note: All of the figures used in this story are found on the Ministry of Health's COVID-19 dashboard or in its Daily Epidemiologic Summary. The number of cases for any region may differ from what is reported by the local public health unit, because local units report figures at different times.) It was the fewest number of new infections logged on a single day in nearly a week. The seven-day average of daily cases continued its steady decline down to 2,371, the lowest it has been since Dec. 30, 2020. It has been trending downward since its peak of 3,555 on Jan. 11. Notably, however, Ontario's network of labs processed just 35,968 test samples for the virus despite capacity for more than 70,000 daily. Collectively, they reported a test positivity rate of 5.5 per cent. Another 2,448 cases were marked resolved in today's report. There are now 23,620 confirmed, active infections provincewide, down from a high of more than 30,000 earlier this month. According to the province, there were 1,398 people with COVID-19 in hospitals, though as is often the case on weekends, about 10 per cent of hospitals did not submit data. A total of 397 patients were being treated in intensive care, while 283 required a ventilator to breathe. Public health units logged another 43 deaths of people with COVID-19, pushing Ontario's official death toll to 5,846. Meanwhile, at a media briefing this morning, members of Ontario's vaccine distribution task force said the province will delay first doses for health-care workers and essential caregivers amid a shortage of the Pfizer product. Available doses of vaccines will instead be channelled only to residents of long-term care and at-risk retirement homes, as well as First Nations seniors living in elder care settings. The goal is to have all those who fall into one of these groups be given a first dose of vaccine by Feb. 5, 10 days earlier than first planned. Health workers in the long-term care sector as well as essential caregivers were slated to be vaccinated during the initial stages of the province's rollout, alongside residents. Due to delays in expected shipments of the Pfizer vaccine, however, the focus in coming weeks will be solely on people at the highest risk of severe illness or death, officials said. The shift means that front-line health-care workers in other settings, such as those doing direct patient care in hospitals, will have to wait longer than originally planned to be immunized. "As we speed up vaccines for the most vulnerable, we have to ensure that we're able to provide their second dose," Premier Doug Ford said at a news conference Monday. "Delivery delays are now forcing us to be careful and cautious." Provincial officials also said there is uncertainty surrounding expected shipments of the Pfizer vaccine the weeks of Feb. 8 and Feb. 15. The federal government has not yet specified how many doses Ontario should anticipate receiving in that period, they said, making it difficult to provide a granular timeframe for when those shots will be administered. Moreover, all of Ontario's 34 public health units are expected to have vaccines available for priority groups by the end of this week. As of this morning, there were 14 health units that thus far had not received any doses for administration. The province said it gave out 5,537 doses of vaccines on Sunday. A total of 286,110 shots have been administered, while 71,256 people have received a second dose. "As soon as there is certainty in deliveries ... it will be full steam ahead," Ford said. "It is our hope that by the summer, everyone who wants to get a vaccine will be able to get a vaccine." Ontario has 34 cases of variant 1st detected in U.K. Dr. Vanessa Allen, chief of microbiology and laboratory science at Public Health Ontario, told reporters later on Monday that the province has now identified 34 cases of the variant first detected in the United Kingdom, but none of the variants first found in South Africa and Brazil. These strains are called "variants of concern," she said. Allen said some evidence indicates that the variant first detected in the U.K. is transmitted more easily and causes more severe disease in some people. This particular strain of COVID-19 has been found in more than 60 countries, she said. Public Health Ontario has developed a screening test for this variant and it is being used to test any COVID-19 positive traveller, people in more aggressive outbreaks, and people who have been identified as having a characteristic pattern on one test used in three labs in Ontario. All samples that tested positive for COVID-19 on Jan. 20 will be tested for the variant by Public Health Ontario to give the province a snapshot of it, she said. Testing for variants needs to be tied closely with public health measures, she added. "We're working very closely with our public health colleagues, including the public health units, to ensure that these individuals that are identified with the variant of concern are prioritized for case and contact management and other supports," she said. Dr. David Williams, Ontario's chief medical officer of health, said daily case numbers have begun to drop in some public health regions or are reaching plateaus in others and the province is beginning to see the effects of the stay-at-home order and the second declaration of emergency. "We keep seeing the numbers coming down steadily. We're going in the right direction," Williams said. The province, however, is continuing to see high numbers of deaths and the number of people in intensive care units has not dropped extensively, he said. Williams added that Ontario residents still need to be careful and follow public health measures. 100,000 students return to school Schools in seven public health units across southern Ontario reopened for in-person classes today. Education Minister Stephen Lecce said that means 100,000 students will be returning to the classroom for the first time since before the winter break. The province is implementing more safety measures in areas where schools are reopening, including requiring students in grades 1 through 3 to wear masks indoors and when physical distancing isn't possible outside as well. It's also introducing "targeted asymptomatic testing" in those regions. While it's been more than a month since students in southern Ontario have been in the classroom, classes resumed in the northern part of the province on Jan. 11. The provincial government has said the chief medical officer of health is keeping a close eye on the COVID-19 situation in public health units where schools remain closed to decide when it's safe for them to reopen. But the province has said that in five hot spot regions — Windsor-Essex, Peel, York, Toronto and Hamilton — that won't happen until at least Feb. 10. The public health units where schools are reopened today were: Grey Bruce Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge Hastings and Prince Edward Counties Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington Leeds, Grenville and Lanark Peterborough Renfrew County Calls for paid sick days mount Also on Monday, a group of southern Ontario mayors, as well as provincial opposition parties, renewed their calls for the institution of paid sick days to help workers during the pandemic. A group of Greater Toronto and Hamilton-area mayors issued a news release again asking the province or federal government to step up. The release notes that despite the ongoing lockdown in Ontario, the GTHA continues to see outbreaks in essential workplaces, despite current federal aid. Simply put, people are still going to work sick, the group says. "Failure by the federal or provincial governments to address this issue will result in people continuing to avoid testing and continuing to come to work sick," the release states. "Updating the sick pay benefits available will save lives and help bring the virus under control faster." Ford has repeatedly rebuffed calls for sick days — after his government slashed the requirement that was instituted by the previous Liberal government — saying federal benefits are able to cover off the issue. Both the provincial NDP and the Liberals published notices today of their intent to introduce legislation to institute paid sick days. With a majority Progressive Conservative government however, such moves are unlikley to pass unless PC members vote against their own party.
HALIFAX — A billion-dollar deal that marks the single biggest investment in Canada's seafood industry by an Indigenous group was finalized on Monday, with one First Nation's chief calling it a "significant achievement for the Mi'kmaq."Vancouver-based Premium Brands Holdings Corp. and a coalition of First Nations in Atlantic Canada have each acquired half ownership of Clearwater through a new partnership, FNC Holdings Ltd., at a price of $8.25 a share.The $1-billion transaction, including debt, is expected to see the Mi'kmaq First Nations partnership hold Clearwater's Canadian fishing licences.Membertou First Nation Chief Terry Paul said the deal will transform Indigenous participation in the commercial fishing sector."This is a significant achievement for the Mi'kmaq," he said in a statement. "This collective investment by First Nations in Clearwater represents the single largest investment in the seafood industry by any Indigenous group in Canada."The partnership, which includes Membertou, Miawpukek, Sipekne'katik, We'koqma'q, Potlotek, Pictou Landing and Paqtnkek communities, will provide more opportunities for Indigenous Peoples in the Atlantic region and bring prosperity to the communities, Paul added. The participation in the commercial seafood sector is not expected to impact ongoing efforts by Indigenous communities in Atlantic Canada to establish a "moderate livelihood" or treaty rights-based fishery.Clearwater fishes a variety of seafood, including scallops, lobster, clams and crab in Canada, Argentina and the U.K, with sales in 48 countries around the world.The acquisition will allow the Halifax-based seafood company to continue to grow while preserving its culture and community presence, said Ian Smith, president and CEO of Clearwater."This partnership positions us to continue building on the legacy of our founders, Colin MacDonald and John Risley, while we embark on the next chapter of a remarkable Atlantic Canadian success story," he said in a statement. Premium Brands owns a broad range of specialty food manufacturing and food distribution businesses with operations across Canada, the U.S. and Italy.George Paleologou, president and CEO of Premium Brands, said the company's brand development capabilities and extensive customer relationships will strengthen Clearwater's business and position it to accelerate its growth.This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 25, 2021.Companies in this story: (TSX:CLR, TSX:PBH) The Canadian Press
Trois-Rivières – Après neuf ans de services comme évêque de Trois-Rivières, l'heure de la retraite a sonné pour Mgr Luc Bouchard. L'homme de 72 ans, originaire de Cornwall en Ontario, a demandé et obtenu du Pape François la renonciation de sa charge pastorale pour des raisons de santé.Trois-Rivières – Après neuf ans de services comme évêque de Trois-Rivières, l'heure de la retraite a sonné pour Mgr Luc Bouchard. L'homme de 72 ans, originaire de Cornwall en Ontario, a demandé et obtenu du Pape François la renonciation de sa charge pastorale pour des raisons de santé. Victime d'un ACV en 2010, des complications de santé récentes l'ont poussé à prendre cette décision. Monseigneur Bouchard a été ordonné prêtre en 1976. Il est devenu évêque de Trois-Rivières en 2012, après avoir passé les 11 années précédentes dans les mêmes fonctions au sein de la paroisse de Saint-Paul en Alberta. Un processus est maintenant mis en place pour lui trouver un successeur qui sera éventuellement nommé par le Pape. L'actuel évêque auxiliaire de Trois-Rivières, Mgr Pierre-Olivier Tremblay, est pressenti pour occuper le poste.Marc-André Pelletier, Initiative de journalisme local, Le Nouvelliste
One year ago today – the first cast of what would become known as COVID-19 was confirmed in Canada. The patient was a man who had recently travelled from Wuhan, China. Travis Dhanraj looks back at the last year
CALGARY — A player with the Western Hockey League Kamloops Blazers has suffered what the league describes as "life-altering injuries" following a weekend snowboarding accident in Saskatchewan.A statement posted by the league says the news about Kyrell Sopotyk is devastating.The 19-year-old forward from Aberdeen, Sask., was entering his third year with the Blazers.An online fundraiser set up for Sopotyk says he has been paralyzed.The fundraiser launched Sunday to assist Sopotyk and his family with "possible renovations, health care costs and any additional supports," and had far surpassed its $50,000 goal in less than 15 hours.A statement issued by the Kamloops Blazers encourages public support of the fundraiser and calls Sopotyk "a tremendous young man and an exemplary representative" of the team.This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 25, 2021. The Canadian Press
WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden has brought back Dr. Kevin O'Connor as his physician, replacing President Donald Trump's doctor with the one who oversaw his care when he was vice-president. The White House confirmed that Dr. Sean Conley, the Navy commander who served as the head of the White House Medical Unit under Trump and oversaw his treatment when he was hospitalized with COVID-19, will assume a teaching role at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. O'Connor, a retired Army colonel, was Biden's doctor during his entire tenure as vice-president, having remained in the role at Biden's request. He remained Biden's physician while assuming a role on the faculty of George Washington University. The White House said O'Connor was being commissioned by the president but was not rejoining the military. He is the first non-active duty doctor to serve as physician to the president in almost three decades. Conley faced intense scrutiny over his lack of transparency during Trump's illness with COVID-19. Then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said at the time that Trump's condition was worse than Conley had let on. Zeke Miller, The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court declined Monday to take up the case of former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, who is serving a 6 1/2-year prison sentence after being convicted in a corruption case. The high court's decision not to hear Silver's appeal is another sharp blow to the Manhattan Democrat, who was once one of the three most powerful state officials. Silver was ousted as speaker in 2015 and was convicted later that year. His original conviction was overturned on appeal, but he was convicted again in 2018. Part of that conviction was then tossed out on another appeal, leading to yet another sentencing in July. Silver, 76, began serving his sentence in August. In the part of the case that survived the appeal process, Silver was convicted in a scheme that involved favours and business traded between two real estate developers and a law firm. Silver supported legislation that benefited the developers. The developers then referred certain tax business to a law firm that paid Silver fees. Two justices, Neil Gorsuch and Clarence Thomas, said they would have heard Silver's case. Earlier this month, The New York Times reported that President Donald Trump was considering clemency for Silver, but ultimately no pardon or sentence reduction was granted. Silver has been serving time at the federal prison in Otisville, about 80 miles (130 kilometres) from New York City. Before his conviction, Silver was a giant in New York politics. First elected to the Assembly in 1977, he became speaker in 1994, holding that position for more than two decades. For nearly half that time, during the administration of Republican Gov. George Pataki, he was the most powerful Democrat in the state. Silver's lawyers had asked the court to consider allowing him to serve his sentence at home because of the risk of contracting COVID-19 and dying in prison. But District Judge Valerie Caproni said issuing a sentence without prison time was inappropriate because Silver was guilty of “corruption, pure and simple.” The Associated Press
Partnership and collaboration are words that come up again and again when talking about the history of the SmartICE project. The research project turned social enterprise began over 10 years ago when researchers at Memorial University began working with the Nunatsiavut Government to look at ice thickness on the Labrador north coast following an unusually warm winter. Two inventions to help measure ice thickness — the SmartBUOY, and the SmartQAMUTIK — came from that, and the Sea-ice Monitoring and Real-Time Information for Coastal Environments (SmartICE) project was born. Since then, the project has won many accolades for its work, including the 2016 Arctic Inspiration Prize, the Governor General’s Innovation Award and the 2020 President’s Award for Public Engagement Partnerships from Memorial University. There has been a lot of interest in the technology from outside the province and the country, with sea ice changing worldwide. A couple of years ago the project spun off SmartICE Inc., a social enterprise with a production facility in Nain, working with the community to employ young people to make the technology in cohorts and teaching them a variety of skills. Carolann Harding, executive director of SmartICE Inc., said things like building bridges, partnerships, engagement and bringing social impact to the community are part of being a social enterprise. “We’re a small organization and in order to grow, you need to have the supports around you and bring value to each other. It’s not just about us taking, it’s about the value of what we can give to each other,” she said. Harding said when they set up the facility in Nain, which has been up and running for over a year, they were mindful of making sure to engage the community and give the community what it needed from the project. In 2019 they got the building ready to go, and that’s where Rex Holwell came in. Holwell, who is from Nain, was hired as the northern production and regional operations lead for Nunatsiavut. Holwell, who had previously worked in the resource industry, said he wanted to get involved with the social enterprise in his home community. He said when he came in the vision was already in place and his job was to implement it at the Nain facility. In the summer of 2019, they held the first cohort of seven Inuit youth from the ages of 18 to 29, teaching them different job skills like hazard awareness and how to assemble the SmartBUOY. “Things that would look good on a resume,” Holwell told SaltWire Network from his office in Nain. “We kind of knew from the start we were a stepping point for the youth.” Holwell said they’re not like other employers, in that they don’t require prior work experience or specific education to take part. The cohorts are to help people in the community gain skills to help them find other jobs. “We want the people who don’t have work experience or education, be their stepping stone to progress farther in their career,” he said. “Have we had that effect or not? I think so. We’re open to anybody.” He said it’s a part of his job that he enjoys greatly, getting to know youth in the town better and helping them find employment. “Maybe it’s being selfish, but sometimes I’ll see some of the youth from the cohorts and I’ll think, I might have had a smidgen to do with making their lives, the lives of their families, better, and there’s a great satisfaction from that.” They’ve logged over 5,000 employment hours between the cohorts so far, with the fourth one coming up this summer. Toward the end of the course, Holwell teaches the youths how to make the SmartBUOYs, and the ones they make are deployed across the Arctic. Holwell said he always makes sure to find out the exact locations of where the buoys will be used, and shows it to the youths on a map. Last winter the cohort deployed a buoy off the coast of Nain, and Holwell said it was great to see the pride on their faces. “They can actually see that something they’re building will help save lives,” he said. “Once they know that, they take pride in building those SmartBUOYs. They know they’ll be sent up to Nunavut or wherever to help save lives.” Evan Careen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Telegram
The Brock University Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute lecture series has returned. In its 14th year, the series highlights cutting-edge research from grape and wine industry experts. This year’s series will feature speakers from across the institute’s network of researchers, scientists, fellows and professional affiliates. Lectures will cover topics including consumer insights and preferences in the local and provincial wine industry, the use of augmented reality in wine marketing, research on cold hardiness and vineyard pests, and grapevine virus research and certification. “Although this has been a challenging year for everyone, the institute has still produced a great deal of critical research with applications for grape growers and winemakers across Canada,” Debbie Inglis, scientist and institute director, said in a news release. “Our lecture series puts that research directly into the hands of the industry, providing tailored, real-world solutions to industry priorities from vine to glass.” The free lectures, which are open to the public, began Jan. 20 and will take place remotely via livestream every week until Mar. 31. Sean Vanderklis is a Niagara-based reporter for the Niagara Falls Review. His reporting is funded by the Canadian government through its Local Journalism Initiative. Reach him via email: email@example.com Sean Vanderklis, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Niagara Falls Review
Le chanteur country Daniel Dan est de retour après un silence sur disque de cinq ans. Il avait ébloui la critique en 2015 avec son second album intitulé Le cowboy des grandes villes. Cet ancien homme d’affaires devenu artiste country habite Baie-du-Febvre depuis huit ans maintenant.maintenant. Beaucoup l’appellent le chanteur-entrepreneur. «Je fais tout de A à Z. Heureusement, ça va super bien! Avant la pandémie, j’avais des salles de spectacles qui étaient complètes, mais on a dû remettre ça. C’est ce qui m’a donné le temps de finaliser ce que j’avais commencé». Un troisième album. Car depuis quelques années, Daniel Dan ne vit que de sa musique. «Je suis régulièrement en spectacle, je suis très occupé». La chanson titre de son prochain album, Laissez-moi vivre ma vie, fera partie du troisième opus de Daniel Dan. Il a voulu la dédier «à ces hommes, ces femmes qui luttent à tous les jours contre l’Alzheimer. Et aussi pour remercier les aidants naturels pour leur dévouement. Beaucoup de fans, d’amis me parlent de cette maladie, c’est ce qui m’a amené à écrire cette chanson». L’album doit paraître fin mars, même si la pandémie rend le travail en studio plus difficile. L’album contiendra des compositions originales et deux reprises tirées du répertoire country américain, soit Running Time de Merle Haggard et I Need More Of You des Bellamy Brothers. La musique: un heureux accident de parcours Daniel Dan n’était en rien destiné à la musique. Elle lui est venue sur le tard. L'artiste évolue pendant près de 20 ans dans le monde des affaires. Mais tout s’arrête brusquement en 2006. Pour se refaire une tête et panser ses blessures, Daniel Dan sillonne en motorisé les routes des Amériques en compagnie de sa conjointe. Il parcourt l’est du Canada et s’arrête en Floride, en Louisiane, au Tennessee et dans la merveilleuse ville de Nashville… beaucoup de musique arrive à ses oreilles: du blues, du bluegrass et bien sûr, le country. Plus de deux ans passent. Et quand il revient au Centre-du-Québec en 2010, il décide de suivre des cours de guitare. Il y fait alors la rencontre de Michel Labbé. Une rencontre qui sera pour lui déterminante. Cet ancien batteur du groupe country la famille Bessette l’invite à des soirées country. C’est le grand déclic. «Moi, j’ai commencé à faire de la musique pour me changer les idées et la vie a fait que les gens ont aimé ça», résume-t-il. Écrire une chanson est exigeant pour cet ancien homme d’affaires. «En 2010, quand je suis arrivé à Drummondville, j’ai appris la guitare. Pour moi, ce n’est pas inné, la musique. J’ai été obligé d’apprendre comment être sur scène, jouer de la guitare, chanter et entretenir sa voix. En studio, c’est la même chose. Il y a d’autres techniques. Tu récoltes ce que tu sèmes». Daniel Dan s’est reconstruit. Deux ans plus tard, il sort son premier opus intitulé Suivre le courant. Il y présente une douzaine de reprises de chansons populaires. Ses premières compositions originales se fraient un chemin sur un second disque, Le cowboy des grandes villes, paru en 2015. Ce nouvel album comprend alors 12 chansons, dont sept lui sont originales. Parmi elles, la chanson À toi mon père, en mémoire du sien, disparu à l’âge de 46 ans seulement. Les tournées débutent. Daniel se produit de festival en festival pendant près de deux ans. Depuis, rien ne l’arrête. «Je surfe sur la musique. On a fait le tour de la Gaspésie cet été et on faisait des petits spectacles. Ça me permet de gagner ma vie». Daniel Dan anime aussi, les mercredis soirs, une émission de musique country pour le compte d’une radio web, CJMS 2.0. On lui demande quand même si le monde des affaires lui manque. Il nous répond: «Sincèrement, je suis dans les affaires aujourd’hui. Je suis heureux dans ce que je fais», dit-il en pensant à son public: «Quand tu reçois cette énergie-là, ça fait du bien». Écouter Laissez-moi vivre ma vie Facebook : daniel.dan.180 (Parution originale: Le Courrier Sud)Boris Chassagne, Initiative de journalisme local, La Voix du Sud
The spike of new cases of COVID-19 in Arviat is related to gatherings in homes, according to information collected by the government of Nunavut. Nunavut's chief public health officer said in a press conference Monday morning that multiple households are affected, some of those households had COVID-19 in the early stages of the outbreak late last year, and some did not. Dr. Michael Patterson said there's two possible ways that COVID-19 reappeared in Arviat, one is that it was never really gone from the community, the other is that there was a new introduction of the virus, but contact tracing has not yet turned up evidence of a new introduction. Two new COVID-19 cases were reported in Arviat Monday morning. In a news release, the government of Nunavut said all individuals are asymptomatic, doing well and are isolating, bringing the total number of active cases to 17. Patterson says Arviat has a young population, which means it's not surprising that the individuals are asymptomatic, as complications from the virus are more likely in older individuals. Missed the press conference? Watch it here: Cases surged in the Nunavut community over the weekend. On Friday, Nunavut reported its first new case since Dec. 28, with another one on Saturday. Then on Sunday, the territory reported 13 new cases of COVID-19. Patterson stressed the need to follow the public health measures put in place in the community over the weekend, including getting advanced permission from the office of the chief public health officer for all travel to and from the community. Visitors to homes in Arviat are restricted to emergencies only and capped at five people in addition to the people who live there. One of the big lessons from the earlier stages of this outbreak is transmission is much more likely to happen when people are visiting each other's homes, instead of workplaces or other settings, Patterson said. Therefore, the government plans to adjust its strategy this time to keep household bubbles as small as possible. Anyone who has travelled from Arviat since Jan. 19 is asked to self-monitor for symptoms and asked to contact the health centre of the community they are currently in to assist the government in its contact tracing efforts. To help reduce transmission to other communities, Patterson said medical travel to Iqaluit and Rankin Inlet from Arviat has been suspended for the time-being. Appointments that can happen virtually will be done so, and patients requiring in-person care will be sent to Winnipeg. Arviatmiut in isolation in the South have been offered the opportunity to stay in the hotel hub for now, should they choose to. Those vaccinated must also follow public health restrictions Patterson said these restrictions must be followed by those who have received the first dose of the Moderna vaccine as well, because the shot has not yet had time to take effect. It takes a person about two weeks to develop protection from serious complications from COVID-19. One dose of the Moderna vaccine is about 80 per cent effective, two doses brings that level of protection to 94 per cent. Some of the new cases in Arviat did get the first dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, but Patterson stressed this does not mean the vaccine is ineffective. It's not a vaccine failure. Keep in mind it takes at least two weeks to start providing some protection to people, so it's too early for that to have kicked in. - Dr. Michael Patterson, Nunavut's chief public health officer "It's not a vaccine failure. Keep in mind it takes at least two weeks to start providing some protection to people, so it's too early for that to have kicked in. That will be some time next week," Patterson said. For those who did get the first shot and now have COVID-19, Patterson still recommends getting the second shot. "The next clinic is almost three weeks away, so those who currently have COVID[-19] should be recovered enough to get the vaccine at that time," Patterson said. Vaccine doeses still avialable in Arviat The Nunavut government also said that COVID-19 vaccine doses are still available in Arviat and residents should contact the health centre to make an appointment to get vaccinated. A spokesperson for the government of Nunavut said 69 per cent of eligible adults in Arviat have recieved their first dose. Vaccine clinics were designed from the beginning to minimize the risk of spread of COVID-19, Patterson said. "Like everything else, we can never make the risk zero, but we think we can manage the risk well enough that the benefits of getting the second dose into everyone on time, will be much greater than the risks of a little bit of further spreading," Patterson said. Nunavut's Rapid Response Team is supporting the community health team remotely, the territory said Monday, and more support should arrive in the community in the next 24 hours. Arviat has eight nurses working at the health centre, a number which has fluctuated some since the beginning of the outbreak. The community has had a total of 236 confirmed cases since the start of the pandemic, accounting for about 80 per cent of the 280 total confirmed cases territory-wide. New vaccine clinics announced Sanikiluaq, Naujaat and Kinngait and are the next communities slated for vaccine clinics. Sanikiluaq's clinic is scheduled for Feb. 8 and 9 at Paatsaali High School. Naujaat's clinic will be held at Tusarvik School on Feb. 15 and 16, and Kinngait's clinic will be at the community hall from Feb. 22 to 24. All clinics are scheduled from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. To date, 4,458 Nunavummiut have been vaccinated. Anyone who thinks they've been exposed to COVID-19 should call the COVID-hotline at 1-888-975-8601 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. ET, or notify their community health centre. People should also immediately isolate at home for 14 days. Do not go to the health centre in person.
Police in Jamaica confirm they are investigating the death of a 43-year-old woman from Markham as a homicide. Investigators say Latoya Alcindor was killed sometime between Jan. 18 and Jan. 21 inside a guest house in Runaway Bay, which is about 100 kilometres northwest of Kingston, the country's capital. Guests at that location smelled a foul odour and alerted police, who entered the unit and found her body. Police say Alcindor's body was found with stab wounds and evidence of other trauma. She had been been staying with a man inside the guest house, police say, and he is considered a suspect. The man is still at large, and investigators have not identified him at this time. Tashia Antoine told CBC News that Alcindor was her "godsister," and the two had known each other their entire lives. She said Alcindor was "a pillar in the Caribbean community" and a "cultural ambassador" who was heavily involved in Caribana and fundraising initiatives. "Tears come to my eyes when I just think of her, or see a picture of her," Antoine said. "She was a loving mother of two beautiful girls ... it's hard for them to see that their mother's life has been taken so tragically." Alcindor hosted an online radio show and was well-known in the community, Antoine told CBC News. "She has a large family as it is but she had an extended family of her community," she said. "Everybody is just shocked and can't believe that something like this, something so vicious... could happen to person who is known for her giving nature." "The community is heartbroken," she added. Antoine said Alcindor, who also worked in property management, travelled to Jamaica on Dec. 26 to pursue a business opportunity. She had met the man she was staying with a few months before on another trip, Antoine said. "This is the person we're trying to reach out [to] and find, so we can get some answers," she said, adding that she had spoken to her friend not long ago, and everything seemed okay. "It's just a major shock, because the last time I spoke with her, she was extremely happy," Antoine said. "She could not have done or said anything to warrant this type of death." Global Affairs Canada spokesperson Grantly Franklin told CBC News the Canadian government is offering its "deepest condolences" to Alcindor's family and friends, and that consular officials are now talking with local authorities to get more information. Due to the provisions under the Privacy Act, Franklin said, no further information can be disclosed by Global Affairs.
A Saskatchewan-raised hockey player has been paralyzed by a snowboarding accident. Kamloops Blazers forward Kyrell Sopotyk, 19, was injured in a snowboarding accident in Saskatchewan over the weekend, according to the Western Hockey League (WHL). Sopotyk is from Aberdeen, Saskatchewan. He was drafted to B.C.'s Blazers in 2016. "Everyone associated with the Western Hockey League is deeply saddened by the devastating news," the WHL said in a statement. "The WHL and our member clubs extend our thoughts and prayers to Kyrell, the entire Sopotyk family, Kyrell's teammates with the Kamloops Blazers, and all his friends during this challenging time." A GoFundMe campaign set up on Sunday to raise money for Sopotyk's needs, including possible renovations to his home and health-care costs, has surpassed its goal of $50,000. As of Monday morning, it had raised more than $76,000. "I think any parent that has to go to the hospital after an accident knows what they would be experiencing right now. It's a shock. And I think as a parent, you go through those emotions of ... 'Why my child'?" said Kathleen Zary, organizer of the GoFundMe campaign. "Kyrell is an amazing soul. The family's amazing ... I can't imagine what they're going through right now." Zary said the success of the GoFundMe campaign is not surprising. "They're very well-loved family in [Saskatchewan] and in Kamloops as well. And I know if the roles were reversed, the Sopotyk family would do the same for anybody. They're one of those families that you meet and you just are instantly drawn to them because there's just so lovely and caring to everybody." The cause and type of injury has not been made public at this time.
At about 6 a.m. on travel day last week, one of the vaccination teams in the Beaufort Delta region prepared for a three-day clinic in Tuktoyaktuk, N.W.T. But before the team heads out, it needs to fill up a portable freezer, at a temperature of -20 C, with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. "That's Aidan's baby for two weeks," laughs nurse Heather Redshaw, who is part of the vaccination team heading to the hamlet. Her partner in this experience is Aidan Healy, one of the core logisitians with the COVID-19 immunization team. Healy's duties involve making sure the freezer stays around -20 C at all times, and that the vaccines are at the proper temperature. "I'm pretty much the safe-guarder of the vaccine, so when we travel to communities I'm the one bringing the cooler," said Healy. Redshaw explains that there are two teams that have been making their way through the Northwest Territories' Beaufort Delta region. Redshaw and Healy have already gone to Paulatuk, Sachs Harbor and Aklavik. Tuktoykatuk is their final destination for the first round of vaccinations. 'We want to make sure we get it here safe' The duo spend the next couple hours loading up the 54-kilogram freezer with the vaccines they may need for three days. "We want to make sure we get it here safe, and that it's effective for the people," said Redshaw. They safely put 61 viles of the vaccine, which contain a total of 610 doses, into the freezer at the Inuvik Regional Hospital's pharmacy, which is where all the vaccines in the region are stored. Then they hit the road in a bus that is normally used for the hospital's elder day program. For the last couple of weeks however, it's been used to help bring vaccines, support team members and equipment to the airport or directly to communities. The person in charge of driving the bus is Chris Balla, the Beaufort Delta regional operations manager for Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority. Balla's also part of the immunization response team, and is responsible for making sure the vaccines and the vaccine team make it to their final destination. Team arrives at Tuktoyaktuk's Kitti Hall When the team arrives at Kitti Hall in Tuktoyaktuk, they start thawing out some of the vaccines that will be used that day. Healy is making sure the room is at the right temperature for the thawed vaccines — between 15 and 25 C. At one point Healy opens up the door to make the room a bit cooler. Healy also helps with the database once the clinic begins. Both Healy and Redshaw are from Yellowknife, but everyone else helping with the vaccine clinics, including the nurses, are from communities in the region. At about 10:30 a.m., the team is ready to give residents their first shot. Of the 274 Tuktoyaktuk residents that will receive doses on Friday, Sister Fay Trombley is the first. "That's amazing," exclaims Trombley, while still in the chair after getting the vaccine. "You hardly feel anything." Although their days are long, some can be up to 12 hours, both Healy and Redshaw say they feel privileged to be part of the team. "I feel like I'm part of something bigger than myself," said Redshaw. "It's a little bit of hope on a really dark year for lots of people and people are hopeful it will get back to some type of a new normal and I'm excited to be part of it."