Clark still smiling about chances as BC election enters homeward stretch

first_imgPRINCETON, B.C. – Christy Clark appears unruffled by the rebuff of a shy one-year-old outside a cafe in southern British Columbia, who buries his head in his father’s shoulder.Unfazed, the B.C. Liberal leader plucks a red-and-white pinwheel from a nearby flower box and coaxes a smile from the youngster, who accepts the spinning toy.As she campaigns across the province, Clark, 51, comes across as similarly confident in her ability to win over B.C. voters in Tuesday’s election.Clark is a seasoned campaigner and in the 2013 provincial election, her first as party leader, she was widely predicted to lose.“We were 20 points behind,” Clark recalled in a recent interview. “It was just terrible.“The caucus was divided. The party was broke. We were doomed. Everybody said we were going to lose the election.”Despite losing her own seat, Clark achieved the unexpected and led the Liberals to their fourth-straight majority government.This time Clark is running on her record after a full-term in office.“I feel like this time I have more to say to people than just, ‘Trust me, I’m going to try and do my best for you,’ ” she said between campaign stops in the Okanagan region.“This time I can say, ‘I told you I was going to do my best for you. We have made British Columbia number one in the country. I hope you’ll trust me to do it again.’ “Clark’s campaign is highlighting the Liberal party’s stewardship of a provincial economy that has led the country in growth while trumpeting its financial management by stringing together five straight surplus budgets and promising four more. She has reminded voters the last time the NDP was in power in the 1990s the economy stagnated.But incumbency also has its challenges.Clark’s record is weighed down by a child-poverty rate in B.C. that is the highest in the country. Housing affordability became an issue under her watch and there appears to be growing discontent over political fundraising laws.Clark is no stranger to politics, nor to political defeat. As a child she helped campaign with her father, who was a three-time candidate for the B.C. Liberals, a party that was virtually non-existent at the time.He was never elected, but in 2011 the party he championed chose his daughter as its leader. By then Clark had survived the crucible of student politics during her time at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver.After she was first elected to the legislature in 1996, she went on to serve as education minister and deputy premier in Gordon Campbell’s government.The Liberal campaign’s focus on the economy and job creation has also seen Clark portray herself as the only leader willing and able to stand up to “rising protectionism” south of the border.Late in the campaign, Clark threatened tough action against the thermal coal industry in the United States, asking Ottawa to ban the coal from travelling through U.S. ports after the Americans slapped new duties on softwood. She says she is also willing to go it alone by taxing the coal if the federal government doesn’t back her.Her friends and opponents have described Clark as a fierce political competitor with a knack for electioneering.“Campaigns are a test of character, as much as a test of policy,” she said.— Follow @gwomand on Twitterlast_img read more

Four stories in the news for today Aug 14

first_imgFour stories in the news for Monday, Aug. 14———FREELAND TO LAY OUT MORE NAFTA GOALSChrystia Freeland will push for additional labour and environmental sections when she shares broad strokes today of Canada’s goals for the upcoming NAFTA talks. The foreign affairs minister will deliver the message in a morning speech at the University of Ottawa. It will come as Canada, the United States and Mexico prepare to start fresh trade talks on Wednesday in Washington D.C.———PROFILE ON THE U.S.’S LEAD NAFTA NEGOTIATORWhile the U.S. president trashes NAFTA as a one-sided, job-killing disaster, the man who will lead the American negotiating team when talks start this week is an old proponent of the accord. U.S. chief negotiator John Melle has sung NAFTA’s praises in the past. Melle’s worldview, according to friends, is that nobody’s a saint when it comes to free trade; everyone’s a bit of a protectionist sinner, and, if their mutual interests align, they just might get along and get a deal.———ASYLUM-SEEKERS STRUGGLING TO FUND HOUSINGSome asylum-seekers who have crossed the Canada-U.S. border say they’re struggling to find a place to live once they leave government-run shelters. The shelters have been set up to receive the surging number of people entering Quebec, but they’re only intended as temporary housing. Asylum-seekers are generally expected to leave the shelters once they receive their first social assistance cheques, but several who spoke to The Canadian Press say it’s not that easy.———HPV-RELATED ORAL CANCERS RISING IN CANADAResearchers say the proportion of oral cancers caused by the human papillomavirus has risen significantly in Canada, and the infection is now behind an estimated three-quarters of all such malignancies. A new cross-Canada study says researchers found the incidence of HPV-related oropharyngeal cancers increased by about 50 per cent between 2000 and 2012. HPV is the most common sexually transmitted infection worldwide.———ALSO IN THE NEWS TODAY:— Protest planned for Toronto today over violence at white supremacist rally in Virginialast_img read more

First Nation sues CN Rail over northern Ontario oil spills

first_imgTORONTO – A northern Ontario Indigenous community is suing CN Rail for alleged environmental and cultural damage caused by two 2015 derailments that led to significant oil spills.The Mattagami First Nation alleges in its statement of claim that the spills near Gogama, Ont., damaged the local environment and surrounding waterways.The $30 million suit alleges that the damage, in turn, has created health risks for the population and crippled community members’ ability to observe their Indigenous traditions including fishing, hunting and gathering.It says the two oil spills, which took place in February and March 2015, collectively poured millions of litres of oil into the area around Gogama, which is about 200 kilometres north of Sudbury, Ont.CN declined to comment on the filing, adding it is committed to cleaning up environmental damage caused by the derailments.Mattagami’s allegations have not been proven in court.The First Nation claimed the 2015 spills impacted many facets of life for community members.“Mattagami First Nation members have suffered stress, distress, anxiety and worry as a result of the contamination of the land, waters, plants and animals on which they rely,” reads the First Nation’s statement of claim, which was filed in March but served to CN on Monday.The suit alleges negligence from CN and claims the rail company breached its standard of care when conducting operations ranging from track maintenance to staff training. It also alleges CN has created a corporate culture that valued speed over safety.The lawsuit alleges that problems began for the Mattagami First Nation late on Feb. 14, 2015, when 29 cars carrying crude oil derailed near Gogama.It said the derailment took place alongside a wetlands area and a stream, resulting in the spilled oil entering the environment almost immediately. Oil eventually migrated into nearby Kazaway Lake, the statement of claim said.The derailment also caused a fire that burned for five days, the suit contends.Scarcely three weeks later, the suit said 39 oil-bearing cars derailed just west of Gogama on March 7, 2015, destroying a rail bridge in the process. Some of the cars were submerged in the Makami River, the suit said, adding the spilled oil then travelled into at least five connected waterways.The Transportation Safety Board, which reviewed that incident, estimated the derailment dumped 2.6 million litres of oil into the local ecosystem.There were no injuries reported, but Mattagami residents were advised to stay indoors during the cleanup due to possible smoke inhalation and told not to consume water from the community source.The lawsuit alleges the effects of the spills continue to be felt more than two years after the derailments and are seeking compensation based on the impact the incidents had on traditional way of life.“The relationship Mattagami First Nation has to the land in its traditional territory is profound and interconnected with all things,” the statement of claim reads. “The land is the source of life, spirituality, teaching and everything in between. The importance of the land, in its unaltered form, for Mattagami First Nation cannot be overstated.”In its review of the March derailment, released earlier this month, the Transportation Safety Board found CN bore some responsibility for the incident.The board found the crash was caused by a broken rail that an employee failed to detect three days before the crash. The review found that a test that would have identified the problem was not conducted even though it was “required by CN standards.”The board also criticized the company for not highlighting the importance of the test in its staff training and for not providing opportunities for “practical, hands-on training.”As a result of its investigation into the incident, the board recommended Transport Canada consistently collect data on general rail surface conditions — and not just previously recorded defects — to better focus its track inspections and help predict future rail failures.In response to the board review, CN said it has taken action to increase safety measures following the 2015 derailments, from improving training for all track workers to implementing stronger engineering standards for its rail repairs and inspections.last_img read more

Yukon judge says former Speaker not guilty of sexual assault and assault

first_imgWHITEHORSE – Former Speaker of the Yukon legislative assembly David Laxton has been found not guilty of both sexual assault and assault.Territorial Court Judge John Faulkner says in a written ruling that he found reasonable doubt to support the charges and questioned the complainant’s credibility.Faulkner says he found the complainant to be an argumentative witness who was reluctant to concede any point she thought might detract from her view.Laxton admitted during the trial that he hugged and kissed the woman twice on the lips when she met him at a Yukon government building in February 2016, but he denied the incident was sexual.The woman told the court she was shocked by the physical contact and said it was unwanted and inappropriate.Outside the court, Laxton thanked his family, lawyers and those who supported him during the ordeal.Laxton stepped down as Speaker shortly after the allegations were made in May 2016, then left the Yukon Party caucus to sit as an Independent before deciding not to run in the Yukon election last November. (CKRW)last_img read more

Free national parks program soon to end but kids will still get

first_imgOTTAWA – The party is nearly over: the free admission to national parks and heritage sites that accompanied Canada’s 150th birthday bash will come to an end Dec. 31.Earlier this year, Environment Minister Catherine McKenna was considering whether to extend the free admission to parks and heritage sites because the program had proven so popular.But McKenna now says the admission fees will return for adults as of Jan. 1, although she is following through on plans to make national parks free for kids starting in 2018.The free parks program helped push attendance at national parks up 12 per cent in the first seven months of the year, with some parks so busy they had to close their gates temporarily on occasion.More than 14 million people took a trip to a national park or heritage site between Jan. 1 and July 31, up from about 12.5 million in the same period in 2016.In July, some parks saw almost twice as many monthly visitors as the previous summer, such as Point Pelee National Park in southwestern Ontario, where July visits were 90 per cent higher than the same month in 2016.Canada budgeted about $76 million on the free parks program, including lost gate revenues, addressing increases in visitors and distributing free discovery passes.Parks Canada runs 47 national parks and 170 national heritage sites, in every province and territory.A one-year family pass, good for up to seven people in a single vehicle to visit more than 80 national parks and heritage sites, will cost $136.40, the same price of the annual Discovery Pass in 2016. A single adult pass will be $67.70 and seniors will pay $57.90.Some parks also offer an annual pass just for that park, including Prince Edward Island National Park and Riding Mountain National Park in Manitoba.Parks also offer individual and group rates for single visits.— follow @mrabson on Twitterlast_img read more

Man charged with driving violations in death of Mountie in roadside accident

first_imgMONCTON, N.B. – A man from Pennsylvania has been charged in the death of a Mountie who was struck by a van while helping motorists change a flat tire on the side of a New Brunswick highway.But, the RCMP says there was not enough evidence to proceed with charges under the Criminal Code.Instead, they say 31-year-old Vasiliy Meshko of Wilkes-Barre, Penn., has been charged under the New Brunswick Motor Vehicle Act with driving without due care and attention, and failing to move over.His lawyer was in Moncton provincial court today and asked that the case be adjourned until Friday, when he expects to enter a plea.Const. Frank Deschenes was assisting two people in an SUV when a cargo van plowed into his cruiser and the SUV on Sept. 12 in Memramcook.The Nova Scotia-based officer was known as a dedicated Mountie who worked to educate the public about the need to slow down when driving past emergency vehicles.The 35-year-old officer — originally from northwest New Brunswick — was a former member of the force’s famed Musical Ride, and had just married last summer.last_img read more

Sovereignty thinktank to appeal CRA ruling denying it charitable status

first_imgMONTREAL – Former Parti Quebecois leader Pierre Karl Peladeau said Thursday he’ll appeal a decision by the Canada Revenue Agency to deny charitable status to the sovereigntist think-tank he founded.Peladeau and the organization’s president, Daniel Turp, accused the federal agency of discriminating against the institute based on politics.In a news conference, Peladeau noted that the Federal Idea, a Quebec-based think-tank on federalism, has links with the Liberal party yet had no trouble obtaining charitable status.“Why should we be treated differently than what (Federal Idea) is all about? And I think the answer is loud and clear: this agency is getting political,” he said.“I think it’s not appropriate in a 21st century democracy.”The CRA refused the sovereignty institute’s request in May, denying it the opportunity to issue tax receipts in exchange for donations.Peladeau’s lawyer said the think-tank will file appeals to both the CRA and the Federal Court of Appeal.Peladeau created the institute on Quebec sovereignty in 2016, promising it would produce studies on the topic but remain independent from the PQ.The organization’s lawyer, Jessica Gaumond, argued the think-tank is a serious and impartial body with policies in place to guarantee the independence of its academic researchers.“There is no sorting; there is no choice,” she said at the news conference.“There is research that is done by a researcher on a reasoned structure and there will be no choice — it will be published whether it is for independence, against independence, for self-determination, whether it is on an African people, the people of Quebec, no matter, it will be published in its entirety.”Turp, a former Bloc Quebecois MP, said the institute was not focused on promoting Quebec independence.As proof, he noted the group’s first expert report was about Catalonia, not Quebec, and was presented in Barcelona.last_img read more

Recovery high schools could help teens before addiction takes hold BC parents

first_imgVANCOUVER – Parents whose children started using drugs as teens and struggled through addiction to the point of fatally overdosing say recovery high schools that provide professional support for students could save lives.Their calls for change are being supported by the BC Centre on Substance Use, the Canadian Mental Health Association and the operator of an Ontario recovery high school — the only one in the country — though it’s closing down due to lack of funding.Janice Walker’s son was 15 when he began using marijuana, mouthwash, ecstasy and any other drug he could get. She said he was kicked out of school and placed in an alternative education program that didn’t help before he became an entrenched drug user who overdosed on heroin laced with fentanyl at age 25.“We could have only dreamed of something like that,” she said of recovery high schools, about three dozen of which exist in various U.S. states.“Schools like this are exactly what we need because we do need to stop living in shame and denial,” Walker said of rampant drug use among teens, who often start by experimenting but can become dependent on substances to deal with issues such as anxiety and depression.Walker’s son, Joe Wijohn-Walker, who she described as highly intelligent, was expelled for using drugs and alcohol but hated the alternative education program that he didn’t complete.“Joe said, ‘I just meet the worst of the worst kids. I’m there with more kids who are using drugs, more kids who are doing bad things.’ “Deb Bailey’s daughter, Ola Bailey, started using multiple drugs at age 14, leading her parents to take her to counselling.“She sought out help on her own, too, but it wasn’t enough,” said Bailey, a former teacher and school counsellor whose daughter was expelled and sent to a so-called pull-out program for three days, only to return to the same high-school rejection that triggered her drug use, which escalated to heroin.“She needed a much more intensive program,” Bailey said, adding recovery high schools could provide mental health supports enabling parents to discuss their children’s drug use openly with staff.Bailey’s daughter was eventually diagnosed with bipolar disorder. She was found dead at age 21 in the stairwell of a building in the Downtown Eastside in 2015, after overdosing on heroin cut with fentanyl.Eileen Shewen, director of Canada’s only recovery high school in Wyebridge, Ont., said she is in the process of shutting down the Quest Collegiate and Recovery Centres program four years after it opened to great support.“I met with Kathleen Wynne personally after she was elected premier, and that was on March 17, 2014,” Shewen said, adding the premier championed the facility’s progressive policies during their two-hour meeting but didn’t provide any funding.Shewen, who has a PhD in public health policy, said she modelled Quest after visiting recovery schools in the United States as she learned about the “amazing” movement.“We had cooking, guitar, swimming, golf. We had circus people coming in, we had aboriginal groups come in and do traditional healing ceremonies and teach the kids about spirituality, we had non-denominational ministering, we had everything, even Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, Al-Anon.”About 30 students went through the first year at Quest, which was a residential facility for 16 months before changing to a day program at the YMCA as money dwindled, said Shewen.She founded the school and paid to run it after she couldn’t find a supportive school for her daughter, who was “imploding” at a traditional school.“It was mind blowing what we were able to do with these kids,” she said. “You make abstinence the norm where it’s the opposite in high school, where it’s ‘Who doesn’t do drugs?’ “Shewen said students at Quest held each other accountable as they journeyed through a program that provided education and recovery from addiction as staff consulted psychiatrists, psychologists and family doctors.Patrick Smith, national CEO of the Canadian Mental Health Association, said recovery high schools in the United States provide students with peer support they don’t get at traditional schools, which expel kids whose relapsing condition is not understood.“It’s one other failure on top of all their other failure experiences. A recovery school says, ‘Why would we want to put kids in a situation where they’re more likely to fail? That’s demoralizing,” said Smith, who is also a clinical psychologist.“Most kids who go into treatment and then go back to their high school, they’re the kids who people are whispering about in the hallway and deciding whether they’re going to invite them to a party or not because there’s going to be alcohol and drugs.”— Follow @CamilleBains1 on Twitter.last_img read more

Keeping Canadas power on will require 20000 new workers by 2022

first_imgOTTAWA — Canada’s electricity providers say they need to appeal to a younger and more diverse workforce if they’re going to keep the country’s lights on.A new report on the industry’s labour needs from Electricity Human Resources Canada suggests at least 20,500 new workers will be needed in power plants and transmission systems before 2022.“It’s extremely critical,” said Michelle Branigan, the CEO of the organization formed 15 years ago to address workforce concerns in the sector.Almost 107,000 people are employed directly in the industry in Canada, from generation to power delivery. Currently the industry is not as diverse as Canada as whole, with women accounting for only one in four employees and visible minorities just over one in 10. It’s also older than average: Workers under age 25 account for fewer than one in 20 people.The demand for new workers is complicated by the fact many of the jobs require substantial training.“These people are not trained in like three months or six months and ready to hit the ground running,” said Branigan.Most of the new workers will be needed to replace the aging workforce, but the industry is also expanding as demand for power grows thanks to battery-powered electronics, electric cars and digital systems.The future workforce is also going to have to be more agile, able to work on renewable energy sources and digital technologies that are transforming the sector at a rate it has never before seen, said Branigan.Failing to address this critical demand for workers runs the risk that Canada’s power systems will become less reliable, she said.“If you don’t have the right people in the right place at the right time, with the right skills, that’s where we could run into difficulty,” she said.The report notes a number of electricity-sector jobs demand similar skills as other industries — engineers, cybersecurity experts, information and communication technology specialists, to name a few — and electricity companies have to compete with flashier and more popular companies for the same workers.Many young people know little about the provincial utilities that generate and transmit much of Canada’s electricity, Branigan said.“But do you know Google, do you know Shopify, do you know these types of organizations? Yes, you do. Those resonate with young people. Where are they going to think about when they start thinking about an industry that is sexy and cool and is going to be exciting for them?”Nirav Patel, the director of human resources at Ontario Power Generation, said promoting the skilled trades as options for young people, and marketing the industry to kids as young as elementary-school levels, could help attract them.Patel also said while the industry is changing, there is one thing electricity can offer that some other industries cannot: security.“The jobs are going to be around for a long time,” he said.Branigan also warned employers not to focus on the big physical need to refurbish and modernize electricity grids, at the expense of the workforce that runs them.“At the end of the day we need the people to keep the power on,” she said.Mia Rabson, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Tory Leader Ches Crosbie and sister Beth both vying for seats in

first_imgST. JOHN’S, N.L. — As the son of retired political heavyweight John Crosbie, Ches Crosbie presents Newfoundlanders and Labradorians with a familiar name as he seeks to become the province’s next premier in the May 16 election.But the Tory leader is not the only Progressive Conservative hopeful from the storied family — his sister Beth Crosbie is running for the party in a neighbouring district in the provincial capital.In all, there are three pairs of siblings running for office this election, including two brothers representing rival parties.Beth said she’s been impressed watching her older brother, a lawyer who became party leader a year ago, step into public life. She said she’s confident he’ll make a great premier, but she waved away the suggestion that Ches inspired her to enter the race.“I ran in 2015, so I would like to think that I inspired him,” she said with a laugh in a recent phone interview. She finished second in the district behind Liberal candidate Bernard Davis last time around.The Tory leader’s Liberal opponent in the St. John’s district of Windsor Lake is political rookie Bob Osborne, brother of incumbent Liberal Finance Minister Tom Osborne, who is seeking re-election in a district he has represented since 1996.Brothers Jim and Paul Dinn are running in different districts for opposing parties, with PC incumbent Paul seeking re-election in Topsail-Paradise and Jim after the St. John’s Centre seat for the NDP.While Ches is touring the province, Beth has been focusing her efforts on door-knocking in her district of Virginia Waters-Pleasantville.The retired realtor said her family ties to her party’s leader haven’t come up much when meeting with voters, many of who are already familiar with her after her 2015 bid.“I sometimes get people, especially if I’m talking to them on the phone, mixing the names up,” she said, “because Ches and Beth sound the same … if you’re a little bit hard of hearing or on a cell phone.”She said it’s too early to say what kind of role she’d take on if elected, but she’d be glad to pitch in on initiatives to bring more young people and women into politics, or in the area of culture and tourism.John Crosbie had a long career as a federal Conservative cabinet minister and later as lieutenant-governor of the province. But despite her front row seat growing up, Beth Crosbie didn’t always aspire to politics.She said watching her father’s political career taught her the importance of being true to oneself. “He always knew he was doing what he believed in, and you could always fully support him and be proud of him because of that,” she said.As Thursday’s election nears, the younger Crosbie said she plans to keep busy connecting with voters.She lives in her brother’s district of Windsor Lake and voted for him in the byelection he won last September, but she is eligible to vote for herself in her own district this time around.“I’d be happy to vote for Ches, he’s certainly the man I’d like to see in Windsor Lake, but more than likely I will be voting for myself instead,” she said.Holly McKenzie-Sutter, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Trudeau given glimpse of life in the Far North during tour of

first_imgARCTIC BAY, Nunavut — Sitting on a bed next to the oldest Inuit woman in northern Nunavut, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau heard and witnessed first-hand what life is like for the people of the Far North.Trudeau visited Arctic Bay Thursday as part of a two-day visit to the territory.His first stop in the tiny northern community of fewer than 900 residents was a visit to the home of 98-year-old Qapik Attagutsiak. He arrived bearing a gift basket of fresh fruit.Her house was a makeshift structure of unpainted wooden planks and plastic, insulated on the inside with curved walls. It was so small, Trudeau could not stand inside and had to crouch through the half-sized door to greet the elder of Arctic Bay.She has chosen to live in this humble abode because she does not want to live anywhere that has belonged to or has been made by anyone else, a local explained. She helped build this structure and her children’s homes now surround it.Inside, her walls were lined with shelves filled with trinkets and collectibles — dolls and figurines and many tiny teapots. Some trinkets she collected herself, others were gifts. Her conversation with the prime minister was casual. She spoke in her native tongue through a translator, recounting the days of raising her many children in the community, pointing to a black and white photo of herself in her younger days with one of her babies on her lap.Some of those days have been happy, while others have been very difficult, she said. She was wistful about the time when more of their traditional country food of caribou and seal was brought into the community in greater bounty — back in the days when their catches were more plentiful.Trudeau replied by mentioning an announcement he’d made earlier in the day about the creation of a new marine protected area to help with conservation efforts. Attagutsiak seemed pleased, but didn’t want to get into politics.She pointed instead to a silver teapot hanging over a traditional qulliq oil lamp, which, in addition to brewing tea, is also used to help heat her home. She offered Trudeau a cup. He smiled and thanked her, but declined.Before he left, she gave him two pairs of seal skin mittens she had sewn by hand — one pair for him and one for his sons.As he ducked out the door to make his way back to his motorcade, a small group of Inuit women who had been waiting to see Trudeau called over to him. A small group of children had also been waiting, but they hung shyly back, choosing instead to observe with wide eyes as he greeted their mothers and grandmothers with handshakes.Trudeau’s next stop was to a nearby beach called Victory Bay. It was surrounded by mountains with rounded tops and rocky bottoms and colourful horizontal lines of sediment marking their years. The arctic summer meant the water below the mountains was not frozen, and the air was warm from the sun.Together with Environment Minister Catherine McKenna and Fisheries Minister Jonathan Wilkinson, Trudeau was greeted on the beach by a group of Inuit Guardians, who act as stewards of their traditional lands, waters and ice.They told him briefly about their work and their love of being on the land — a defining characteristic of the Inuit people.Trudeau’s final stop was to the community hall, where hundreds of locals had gathered in preparation to greet him for a community feast. The feasts are a tradition in the area, meant to ensure everyone gets enough to eat in a place where food costs are high, and many often go without.Dozens of children crowded around the prime minister, who often became overwhelmed by the pressing crowd. But he obliged anyone who asked for a photo, shook many hands and cradled several small babies.He made brief remarks in the hall, highlighting again the marine protected area announcement. He told the people this measure was being taken to help conserve marine areas in the north and also preserve the Inuit way of life.Most of the locals did not listen closely to his speech. They appeared amused by the spectacle of a visiting prime minister and the entourage of media and staff. They were also distracted by restless children, who wanted to dig into the food laid out in preparation for the feast — trays of bannock and seal among the dishes.As Trudeau finally made his way out the door, some followed him out, trying to capture a photo or a handshake.But most remained inside, lining up for their meal and ready to get on with another summer evening in the Far North.Teresa Wright, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Gaps in Crowns case against BC father charged with killing daughters defence

first_imgVANCOUVER — A defence lawyer laid out five problems with the Crown’s theory in its case against Andrew Berry, the Vancouver Island father accused of killing his two young daughters.Kevin McCullough told the jury in closing arguments that the prosecution couldn’t fill in the gaps for the time of death of the girls, the alleged suicide attempt by Berry, a motive for the crime, the forensics and Berry’s financial situation.Berry is charged with second-degree murder in the stabbing deaths of his daughters, four-year-old Aubrey and six-year-old Chloe, in his Oak Bay home on Christmas Day 2017.He was found in his bathtub with stab wounds to his throat and chest and told the jury earlier that he was attacked by a man with dark skin and hair, but the Crown has suggested his wounds were self-inflicted. McCullough said the Crown’s case was circumstantial and there was no evidence to show that Berry stabbed himself.He also told the jury the blood spatter expert was “in over her head” on a job she was doing for the first time.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Christy Turlington Wants To Educate Congress On Womens Health

first_imgWith only a few weeks until the elections, women’s organizations are mobilizing to “educate Congress” on women’s health and reproductive issues by sending a copy of the landmark book, “Our Bodies, Ourselves,” to every member of Congress.Supermodel Christy Turlington Burns, who founded Every Mother Counts, will join the Boston Women’s Health Book Collective, more widely known as Our Bodies, Ourselves, at a National Press Club Newsmaker on Monday, Oct. 22 at 1 p.m. to launch the new initiative.Members of Our Bodies, Ourselves, say many politicians don’t understand basic reproductive issues. The group launched “Our Bodies, Our Votes” to inform voters, especially younger ones, about ways in which state and federal legislation can affect their health. This new initiative takes the campaign directly to lawmakers.After decades on the covers of magazines, Burns has been devoting her energy to reducing maternal mortality globally and improving the lives of women and girls. She serves on the Harvard Medical School Global Health Council. Her documentary, “No Woman, No Cry,” focused on maternal health. She will join leaders of women’s health, research and medical organizations at the Newsmaker.Speakers: Judy Norsigian , executive director and founder, Our Bodies, Ourselves Christy Turlington Burns , global maternal health advocate and founder, Every Mother Counts Vivian Pinn , director, Office of Research on Women’s Health at the National Institutes of HealthRepresentatives of leading women’s groups, such as Diana Zuckerman, president, National Research Center for Women & Families; Cindy Pearson , executive director, National Women’s Health Network; and the National Women’s Law Center, will also be on hand to provide information.Source:PR Newswirelast_img read more

Victorias Secret Models Host Charity Cycle

first_imgVictoria’s Secret Models Alessandra Ambrosio, Lily Aldridge, Elsa Hosk, Lais Ribeiro, and Martha Hunt hosted Supermodel Cycle to benefit Pelotonia – an annual grassroots bike tour that raises funds for cancer research at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute.Victoria’s Secrets Models Cycle For CharityEach year, more than 6,000 cyclists descend upon Columbus, Ohio to ride for cancer research — a mix of cancer survivors, experienced cyclists, and many riding in honor of loved ones.The Supermodel Cycle ride to support Pelotonia was held at SoulCycle’s West Village studio. This year is the 4th annual Supermodel Cycle with total proceeds passing the million dollar mark.Beginning July 9th, Victoria’s Secret is launching an online auction to support Pelotonia. Visit for a chance to bid on once-in-lifetime experiences, tickets to coveted events, meet-and-greets with athletes and celebrities, amazing vacation packages, luxury merchandise, gorgeous signed photography… and more!Lots include: • 2014 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show Experience in London including FRONT ROW seats, backstage tour, Angel meet-and-greet, and entry to the exclusive VIP after-party • Project Runway season finale tickets and meet-and-greet with Heidi Klum • Daytona 500 Experience with driver Jeff Gordon including meet-and-greet, full access garage passes, grandstand tickets and driving glove • Extra role in director Brett Ratner’s next feature film • One-of-kind Rolex Explorer Watch • The chance to be an Angel for the day and have your portrait taken by Victoria’s Secret photographer Adam Franzino plus hair, makeup and wardrobing by the VS beauty and styling team.The auction closes on July 30th.last_img read more

Hunger Is Awards 13 Million To 198 Local Hunger Charities

first_imgThe Safeway Foundation and the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF) have announced that Hunger Is, their joint charitable initiative to fight childhood hunger in America, has awarded over $1.3 million in grants to 198 local charities to connect hungry children living in neighborhoods to healthy food throughout the country.“I am honored to help bring attention to Hunger Is and increase public awareness of the problem of childhood hunger right here in America, and I am thrilled to see how swiftly we are responding to the issue at the most local levels with the award of over $1.3 million in grants,” stated Academy Award-nominated actress and Hunger Is ambassador Viola Davis. “Millions of children go hungry every day in the United States. I was one of those children and I pledge to tell and re-tell my story until we have eradicated childhood hunger across the nation,” Davis continued.The Hunger Is campaign kicked off in April with a month-long, in-store fundraiser in more than 1,300 Safeway stores across the U.S. Additional funds were generated through online donations at In its first month, Hunger Is raised more than $4.6 million. Managers of each participating Safeway, Vons, Tom Thumb, Carrs, Pavilions and Randalls store nominated a local food or hunger charity serving their immediate community. The selected charities received $1,000 for each nomination. When multiple nominations were aggregated, awards ranged from $2,000 to $63,000.“Our customers heard our call to action and chose to help make a difference in the lives of children,” said Larree Renda, Executive Vice President of Safeway Inc. and Chair of The Safeway Foundation. “We are pleased that the first Hunger Is grants will help to feed children in these same neighborhoods which gave so generously.”Hunger Is grants were awarded based on recommendations from the Hunger Is Advisory Committee (HIAC) comprised of CEO’s from the leading hunger advocacy organizations in the U.S. including Drexel University, Center for Hunger-Free Communities, Feeding America, Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), New York City Coalition Against Hunger, Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, and WhyHunger. The HIAC provides guidance in defining and addressing needs and makes funding recommendations for approval by The Safeway Foundation and EIF Boards of Directors. Many of the local charities receiving the Hunger Is grants are affiliated with these advocacy organizations.“We are thrilled to make these grants, which we know will make a significant impact in local communities in 20 states. We could not be more grateful for the generosity of the Safeway shoppers who made these grants possible,” said EIF President & CEO Lisa Paulsen.More information about the issue is available at, along with simple ways for individuals to donate.last_img read more

Justin Timberlake Joins American Century Championship Celebrity Golf

first_imgMulti-talented actor and musical artist Justin Timberlake will join superstar athletes and entertainers for the first time this summer at the American Century Championship celebrity golf tournament in Lake Tahoe, July 14-19.The acclaimed performer is an avid golfer who plays to a six handicap and is renowned in the sport for his philanthropic endeavors.He will join an impressive lineup of more than 80 sports and entertainment celebrities, including TNT NBA analyst Charles Barkley, NFL MVP and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, TV personality Willie Robertson of Duck Dynasty and a host of current pro athletes and retired Hall of Famers all chasing the $125,000 first prize. The 26th annual tournament raises money for multiple charities and offers free admission to military personnel and guests.With major television exposure (NBC Sports, NBCSN, Golf Channel) and a purse of $600,000, the American Century Championship is the most prestigious celebrity tournament in golf. The 2015 event tees off July 17-19 at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course.In 2007, the PGA Tour announced Timberlake as the host of its 2008 Las Vegas tour stop. The tournament was renamed the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open from 2008-2012. In addition to lending his name to the event and attending the tournaments, Timberlake also raised money for the Shriners Hospitals via concert performances during weekend activities.Timberlake will also join disabled veterans, Sergeant Major Rodney Gorman, and Corporal Chad Pfeifer, winners of the George W. Bush Presidential Center’s Warrior Open, in the field.The American Century Championship has a long history of supporting worthy causes. Since the tournament’s inception in 1990, approximately $4.2 million has been raised for a range of national and local non-profits. Previous beneficiaries include the Uniformed Firefighters Association Scholarship Fund, Fallen Patriot Fund, Lake Tahoe Fire Relief Fund (Angora fire), Autism Speaks, LIVESTRONG Foundation, American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, Expect Miracles Foundation, United Negro College Fund and Boys & Girls Club.For information, promotions, and packages visit and read more

Steven Tyler To Be Honored With Humanitarian Award

first_imgThe Hospitality Committee for United Nations Delegations has named Steven Tyler the recipient of its 2016 Humanitarian Award.Steven Tyler will receive the 2016 Humanitarian Award at the United Nations’ Ambassadors’ Ball in December honoring his philanthropy: Janie’s FundCredit/Copyright: Zack Whitford PhotographyTyler will be honored at the Ambassadors’ Ball on Dec. 3 in New York.The honor is in recognition of the musician’s philanthropic partnership with Youth Villages through Janie’s Fund, created by Tyler in 2015 to give his voice to vulnerable girls who have experienced the trauma of abuse and neglect and are being helped by Youth Villages.“As a father to three daughters, a son, and, now a grandfather, it broke my heart to learn that each year in America alone 700,000 children are victims of serious abuse or neglect and 68,000 will be sexually abused,” Tyler said. “All abuse is wrong — verbal, physical, sexual, emotional. We need to have better ways as parents to help our children and support them. Way too many kids are experiencing abuse, and we want to change that. Enough is enough.”In its first year, Janie’s Fund has gained 2,700 supporters from 38 countries who have contributed more than $1.9 million to help girls receive evidence-based help so that they can overcome the trauma of abuse and neglect. This year, Janie’s Fund will allow Youth Villages to provide more than 18,000 days of care to girls in need, directly helping more than 300 girls.Tyler has long had a desire to help with this issue, dating back to the 1980s when he was in a program for his own recovery. Hearing the personal accounts of women who had experienced incredibly painful and debilitating sexual abuse as children, he saw how the abuse put them on a path of suffering, post-traumatic stress and other disorders that eventually led to substance problems. It was their plight that inspired Tyler to compose the song, “Janie’s Got A Gun.”“I personally know how addiction can fracture lives,” Tyler said. “I don’t wish that on anyone. To use my voice and the voices of many others to help these girls once again find their voice is my mission.”Tyler, the frontman of the legendary rock band Aerosmith, recently released a country album “We’re All Somebody from Somewhere,” which debuted at number one on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart and at the top of the iTunes country downloads. Tyler and Aerosmith have sold more than 150 million records worldwide; he has won four Grammy Awards, six American Music Awards, four Billboard Music Awards and an Emmy Award. In addition to having nine number one hits, 25 gold, 18 platinum and 12 multi-platinum album certifications, Tyler, along with the rest of his band members, were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2001.Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon has a long history in the fight to end violence against women.“Break the silence,” the secretary-general has said “When you witness violence against women and girls, do not sit back. Act! Violence against women and girls will not be eradicated until all of us—men and boys—refuse to tolerate it!”“In choosing this year’s recipient, we searched diligently to find the humanitarian whose efforts are in harmony with the Secretary General, who will be saluted at this year’s Ambassadors’ Ball as his decade of UN leadership ends on December 31,” said Mel Gee Henderson, HCUND co-chair. “We came to realize Steven Tyler is not only a gifted composer and musician with a great big voice but a soul with an even bigger heart who sincerely wants to help those suffering from the horrific pain of abuse.”Luz MacArthur, chairman, said: “Tyler may seem an unexpected choice at first glance. But the more we learned about Janie’s Fund, the more convinced we were that Tyler is the person who can genuinely affect and inspire millions to help in the fight against violence inflicted upon girls and women, not just in the U.S. but around the world.”The 2016 HCUND Ambassadors’ Ball is sponsored by Cambria, an American-made quartz countertop manufacturer. “As a friend and strong supporter of Steven Tyler and Janie’s Fund, Cambria is proud to sponsor the event,” said Summer Kath, senior vice president of business development. “We value strong relationships with partners and communities and continues to serve through a multitude of philanthropic initiatives locally and abroad. We hope you’ll join us in supporting Janie’s Fund.”The Hospitality Committee for United Nations Delegations is the only nonprofit volunteer organization located within the United Nations Headquarters. HCUND promotes and strengthens understanding between all levels of the United Nations diplomatic community, and broadens their appreciation of American culture and customs while serving and residing in New York City.Youth Villages is a private nonprofit organization that helps more than 22,000 of America’s most vulnerable children and families each year in 12 states and Washington, D.C. Youth Villages has been recognized by Harvard Business School and U.S. News & World Report, and was identified by The White House as one of the nation’s most promising results-oriented nonprofit organizations.last_img read more

Joan Baez And Steve Earle Join Stars For 2017 Lampedusa Concerts For

first_imgJRS/USA is thrilled to announce its 2017 Lampedusa: Concerts for Refugees Tour.Lampedusa 2017The tour will travel from Seattle to Dallas October 3-15 and will feature renowned singer-songwriters Joan Baez, Lila Downs, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, Emmylou Harris, The Mastersons, Dave Matthews, Buddy Miller, Alynda Segarra, Lucinda Williams, and special guests.Produced by JRS /USA, in partnership with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency (as part of #WithRefugees), the concerts are intimate evenings of acoustic performances to raise awareness and money to support expanded educational opportunities for displaced people through Jesuit Refugee Service’s Global Education Initiative. Funds raised from the tour help refugees to heal, learn, and thrive.2017 Concert Tour:October 3 – Seattle, WA: Moore Theater – Featuring Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, Dave Matthews, and special guests.October 4 – Portland, OR: Aladdin Theatre – Featuring Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, Emmylou Harris, Dave Matthews, and speical guests.October 8 – San Francisco, CA: Stay tuned for detailsOctober 10 – Los Angeles, CA: The Wiltern – Featuring: Joan Baez, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, The Mastersons, Alynda Segarra, and special guests.October 12 – Tucson, AZ: Fox Tuscon Theatre – Featuring: Joan Baez, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, The Mastersons, and special guests.October 13 – Albuquerque, NM: KiMo Theatre – Featuring: Joan Baez, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, The Mastersons, and special guests.October 14 – El Paso, TX: Abraham Chavez Theater – Featuring: Joan Baez, Lila Downs, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, and special guests.October 15 – Dallas, TX: Majestic Theater – Featuring: Joan Baez, Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, and special guests.Find out more here.last_img read more

Sheryl Crow Marks 5Year Remembrance Of Sandy Hook School Tragedy With Song

first_imgSandy Hook Promise (SHP) has debuted “Tomorrow’s News,” its latest PSA, and “The Dreaming Kind,” an original song by Sheryl Crow on ABC’s Good Morning America.Video: Sheryl Crow – The Dreaming Kind (Official Music Video)Donations from the PSA and proceeds from downloads of the song will benefit Sandy Hook Promise’s lifesaving educational programs.“Tomorrow’s News,” a new PSA created with BBDO New York, follows the success of last year’s video “Evan,” which has received over 150 million views and helped reframe the conversation on gun violence prevention. As with “Evan”, the “Tomorrow’s News” PSA builds on signs exhibited by individuals who may hurt themselves or others that are often missed or not acted upon. The film shows a newscast covering a school shooting the day before it actually takes place to illustrate that. We can learn to “Know the Signs” and take action today to prevent gun violence tomorrow. BBDO, who received over 60 esteemed awards for “Evan” – including one of the top ads of 2016, donated all services and creative teams to make “Tomorrow’s News” for SHP. View the PSA here.“It’s easy to know the right thing to do after it’s too late to do anything. In this PSA, we illustrate that when it comes to gun violence prevention, the stakes are too high to let that continue to be the case. We hope this moves people to support Sandy Hook Promise in expanding its Know the Signs programs,” said Greg Hahn, Chief Creative Officer of BBDO New York.“Tomorrow’s News” continues the conversation about the importance of knowing the signs of someone at risk and taking action. In this video, viewers’ perspective of a mass shooting will be upended as they see how easy it is to miss the signs or grapple with what to do when the signs are there,” said Mark Barden, Managing Director and co-founder of Sandy Hook Promise, and father of Daniel, who was 7-years old when killed in the Sandy Hook Tragedy. “The work of Sandy Hook Promise focuses on preventing gun violence before it starts. “Tomorrow’s News” is a powerful reminder that everyone can prevent a tragedy when they know the signs.”“The Dreaming Kind”, written and sung by nine-time Grammy award winner Sheryl Crow for Sandy Hook Promise, is a song about tragedy turned to transformation and hope. It speaks to the pain our country has endured as tragedies are “getting hard to watch,” yet represents the voice of the families who founded and lead Sandy Hook Promise as well as supporters nationwide by saying:“I’m giving it all I got; there’ll be no more wasting precious time; giving it all I got; and nothing’s ever going to change my mind.”“The Dreaming Kind” is available as a name-your-price download on [“ “:] with a minimum contribution of .99 cents, with download proceeds going to Sandy Hook Promise. Contributions greater than .99 cents are of course accepted and appreciated.The video for “The Dreaming Kind” was filmed on location in Nashville and directed by Gus Black. The elegant and understated black and white film features Crow and her niece. The elegiac yet hopeful message reminds the viewer to “Never Forget – December 14, 2012.”“The tragedy in Newtown 5 years ago and the countless lives lost in mass shootings since have weighed heavily on my heart. I felt compelled to write “The Dreaming Kind” for the incredible people at Sandy Hook Promise (SHP) who work so hard every day to combat gun violence. The extraordinary work this organization does to educate and protect our nation from further bloodshed gives me hope for a better tomorrow. I hope this song will inspire the same feeling in those who hear it,” said Sheryl Crow.“We are grateful to Sheryl for her extraordinary generosity. Every time I listen to the song, it immediately brings me to tears. Not only does it perfectly capture the emotion of our loss and everyday losses in our country, but I believe it epitomizes everything we do at Sandy Hook Promise to move forward and create real change. We know it will resonate with people everywhere and drive people to learn more about Sandy Hook Promise’s gun violence prevention programs and the positive impact they are having,” said Nicole Hockley, Managing Director and co-founder of Sandy Hook Promise, and mother of Dylan, who was 6-years old when he was killed in the Sandy Hook tragedy. “The funding from the song’s downloads will help us accelerate training, which we deliver at no cost, to millions of youth and adults nationwide.”On Thursday, December 14th, Sandy Hook Promise also invites everyone to participate in a “moment of silence” via Facebook Live to commemorate the 5-year remembrance and those lost in the Sandy Hook Shooting.In three years, SHP has trained over 2,500,000 million youth and adults across all 50 states with its evidenced-based, no cost Know The Signs violence prevention programs. The programs focus on how to recognize the signs of at-risk behaviors and take action to intervene BEFORE individuals turn violent and hurt themselves or others.SHP’s four Know The Signs violence prevention programs – which include Start With Hello, Say Something, Signs of Suicide and Safety Assessment & Intervention – are offered free to schools and youth organizations across the country. SHP’s programs have helped stop multiple school shootings, suicides and other acts of violence, as well as reduced incidences of bullying and helped many young people get the mental health services they need.last_img read more

Toronto Actor Shamier Anderson Cast In LAbyrinth opposite Johnny Depp and Forest

first_imgDeadline has learned that Westworld actor Louis Herthum and Shamier Anderson have joined the cast LAbyrinth, the crime drama toplined by Johnny Depp and Forest Whitaker. Helmed by Brad Furman, the pic follows disgraced LAPD detective and journalist Jack Jackson on a hunt to solve the Tupac-Notorious B.I.G murders, which threatens to crack the foundation of the police department.Anderson will play corrupt LAPD officer David “D. Mack” Mack, one of the officers implicated in the conspiracy to murder B.I.G. and a central figure in the LAPD Rampart police corruption scandal. Login/Register With: Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisementcenter_img Facebook Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more