Canadas fedprov finance ministers to start deep dive on marijuana taxation

first_imgOTTAWA – As the country’s finance ministers meet in Ottawa, the Trudeau government should expect to hear concerns about the added burden marijuana legalization could heap onto provincial shoulders.The agenda for the two-day, federal-provincial-territorial gathering, which starts Sunday, will include discussions on how best to apply taxes on a regulated market for cannabis.The federal government introduced legislation in April with a goal of legalizing and regulating the use of recreational marijuana by July 2018.Pot taxation is expected to stay low to ensure the regulated market elbows out illegal dealers.Details, however, on how the tax revenues will be shared between provinces and Ottawa have yet to be determined.The ministers are scheduled to start working on a “co-ordinated approach to the taxation of cannabis,” says a news release from the office of federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau, who hosts the twice-yearly meetings.Taxation is poised to emerge as a key focal point of Canada’s pot-legalization process.Since the federal legislation was tabled, several provinces have voiced concerns about how much work will fall within their jurisdictions — from addiction treatment, to distribution, to policing.For example, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley has warned that provinces will be left with a lot of the “heavy lifting” related to pot legalization, including considerable costs.In Quebec, Public Health Minister Lucie Charlebois has expressed doubts the tax revenue generated by recreational pot will cover the price tag of preparing for regulation, particularly when it comes to health, security and education efforts.Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa said in an interview he is not apprehensive about cannabis legalization, he just wants to ensure the transition into regulated markets doesn’t impose any extra costs on provinces.“There’s going to be a lot of requirements on behalf of the provinces,” said Sousa.“We want to make sure that the proper sharing is there and enough is supported for the implementation of cannabis and the protection (of) our society as we proceed.”Sousa said he will also be keen to hear how his counterparts are approaching legalization.Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott has promised to work with provinces and to commit more resources to cannabis-related needs like public security, policing and educational campaigns.Philpott’s office has also argued that the current system of prohibition is very expensive and legalization could significantly lower the provinces’ existing costs.The trick for Canada’s lawmakers will be finding the pricing sweet spot — high enough to cover costs, but cheap enough to squeeze out the illegal market.The federal government has repeatedly stated its primary goals with legalization are to get weed out of the hands of young Canadians and prevent criminals from profiting from the drug.In addition to cannabis, the finance ministers will also discuss how to improve information sharing between jurisdictions as a way to address tax avoidance, tax evasion, money laundering and terrorist financing.They will also focus on the Canada-U.S. trade relationship.For Quebec Finance Minister Carlos Leitao, the discussions on Canada-U.S. trade, including renegotiation of the North American free trade agreement, will be perhaps the most important issue on the agenda.“I think the objective is to get to a consensus amongst the provinces and the federal government as to what is it that we think that we should be doing, both in terms of the taxation of cannabis and in terms of our relationship with the United States,” Leitao said in an interview.Bank of Canada governor Stephen Poloz will be on hand to deliver a presentation on the state of the economy.Sousa said he would also like to hear more about the state of the federal government’s infrastructure plan, including its proposed, $35-billion infrastructure bank.The bank is designed to use public funds as leverage to attract billions more in private investment for large projects.Senators have been debating whether to split legislative provisions related to the creation of the bank from the government’s budget implementation bill.Follow @AndyBlatchford on Twitterlast_img read more

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Kenney makes UCP leadership bid official

first_imgJason Kenney did the obvious on Saturday, after campaigning to unite the right, he announced his bid to lead the new United Conservative Party. In front of a crowd of supporters in Edmonton, the former federal cabinet minister and Calgary MP made the announcement. “The critics said it would take too long, it was too complicated, it wasn’t legal,” Kenney said in a statement. “One party leader said that the unity plan was all ‘gamesmanship’ that would create ‘confusion and disarray’ and could result in ‘three or four’ conservative parties instead of one. But Alberta is the can-do province. We don’t sit around looking for excuses, we figure out how to overcome obstacles and we just get ‘er done!”As leader of the Alberta PCs, he spearheaded the campaign to merge with Alberta’s official opposition Wildrose Party. The new party was formed after members from the Wildrose and Conservatives voted overwhelmingly to join forces. So far, Kenney is up against the former leader of the Wildrose, Brian Jean, who made his announcement last week.last_img read more

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Daddy lets go to Canada The fearful Haitian march from Trump to

first_imgCORNWALL, Ont. – Their lives changed in an instant that July day when the government letter arrived telling them that her work permit was not being renewed.For five years, Sheila Francois lived, worked and paid her taxes in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to help support her three teenaged children. When she and husband, Frank, read that letter — no renewal and no explanation — they knew their life in the United States was over.“If you have status and you see that immigration stops it, right away you think one thing — deportations,” says 44-year-old Frank Francois.“The minute we saw that happen and as we are watching the news, we saw Canada taking people, we said, ‘we might as well take a chance’.”The Francois family are among nearly 7,000 asylum seekers — most of them Haitian — who have flooded across the Quebec-New York state border since mid-July when the Trump administration announced it might end their “temporary protected status” which was granted following Haiti’s massive 2010 earthquake. They are among the first few hundred the government has relocated to this eastern Ontario processing centre.Few here have heard of Justin Trudeau and no one says they saw his now controversial January Twitter message welcoming immigrants facing persecution. The tweet was heavily criticized by the Conservative opposition for sparking the American exodus.But many here say they uprooted their new American lives because of something more primal: they were driven by fear of the anti-immigration politics of President Donald Trump.“I decided to come to Canada because the politics of migration in the United States changed,” says Haitian-born Justin Remy Napoleon, 39. “I was scared. I came here to continue my life.”Like Frank Francois, Napoleon says he feared deportation over Trump’s policy shift, so he left his adopted home in San Diego, flew to the eastern seaboard and boarded a bus for the northern border. It wasn’t the first time he decided to start over in another country. He left Haiti in 2006 for the Dominican Republic and then went to Brazil.Napoleon says he dreamed of coming to Canada from as far back as his time in Haiti. When he crossed the border earlier this month, “I thought I was entering a paradise.”Jean-Pierre Kidmage, 43, took a three-day bus ride from Miami to New York before taking a taxi across the border. He says he doesn’t know much about Canada but he’s heard good things. He hit the road because he was worried the Trump administration would deport him.He’s been here less than two weeks, but he wants to stay. “I sleep well here. Better here than in the U.S.”Lingering unease is palpable outside Cornwall’s Nav Centre, where they are being temporarily housed. Young men and women, some with children, pace the grounds, their eyes trained on mobile phones. More than a dozen adults politely decline interviews.Some await taxis to take them into town to shop. A few roll suitcases towards a handful of cars and minivans bearing Quebec licence plates that periodically arrive during the day. The new arrivals here are free to go once they have registered their claims and officials say most are headed to Montreal.Now, more than a month and 2,550 kilometres after leaving his most recent home, Frank Francois sits on a bench in warm sunshine. He won’t be photographed, but he’s happy to discuss what has been a life of epic migration. It has been a life of running — from his native Haiti in 1997 to the Bahamas and from America to Canada.He grew up on a farm in Port-de-Paix, the oldest of three brothers and four sisters. He yearned to become a doctor after high school, but there was no way his family could afford the $13,000 in tuition, so he got a visa to the Bahamas.Soon, he began working construction jobs, sending some of his earnings home.“Once you make money to pay your bills, you can help the people that you left behind in Haiti.”He built his own family in the Bahamas. That’s where his three teenagers were born. His family spent a decade and a half there until more bad news arrived in the mail: the government informed him of a new law that called for the immediate expulsion of anyone who’d been in the country as a visitor for more than 10 years.“Hard! Everywhere,” he laughs.His family re-established itself in Fort Lauderdale, near Miami, where Sheila had relatives. She went first with the three children, got visas, her work permit and set the kids up in school. Her husband got a visa and joined them in 2012.He stayed after it expired and periodically found under-the-table work in construction, but it wasn’t easy. “It’s hard when you don’t have a legal status, to survive and work for your families.”The children went to school, made friends and the family got on with life in a rented apartment. Now, aged 13, 14 and 15, the Francois children have become extremely aware of the changing political climate in the U.S.“Every day, they say, ‘Daddy, every time we watch the news we don’t see any policy that the president (has) that’s in our favour.’ They were afraid to face deportations.”Then, when their mother’s rejection letter came, the kids weighed in again.“My children said, ‘Daddy, we were born in the Bahamas’ — this is their words — ‘we think Canada can help us.’“They said, ‘Daddy, let’s go to Canada — find our way out’.”Now, his family’s fate rests on receiving one more piece of official government correspondence: a notice that they qualify to have their asylum claim heard. That would start a process that will allow his children to go to school and for him to get a work permit.“All I want Canadians to know about me is I am a working man,” he says.“I’m looking for work and I’m looking for better education for my children. I want my children to be educated so they can help themselves. You understand?”last_img read more

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Winnipeg mayor wants Edmonton Eskimos to change name to a more inclusive

first_imgWINNIPEG – Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman thinks the CFL Edmonton Eskimos should change their team name.“I think there’s an opportunity to have a more inclusive name,” he said. “That’s ultimately a decision for the team, though.”Bowman, who is Metis, said he respects the Edmonton CFL organization but would prefer a different name.The Eskimos said in a statement that it uses the name with “pride and respect.”“At this point in time, we are actively engaged in listening to the conversation that people are having around our name. Those conversations are ongoing and we are keenly listening to all input including from our loyal season seat holders and fans.”The team also said if Bowman has an opinion he’d like to share with it, he should do so.The Eskimos are facing the Blue Bombers in the CFL western semi-final on Saturday in Winnipeg.It’s not the first time there have been calls for the Edmonton team to change its name.Andre Talbot, the retired 2004 Grey Cup champion who played for the Toronto Argonauts but spent his final season in 2010 with Edmonton, said that changing the team name would be a small, but positive gesture.“We have to honour the aboriginal communities of our great country and respect the fact that the name is deemed offensive and oppressive to these communities,” Talbot said in an interview in 2015.“Sports organizations need to be community building organizations. And if we’re isolating and offending part of that community, then our particular organization or league is not doing its job.”Natan Obed, president of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, which represents Canada’s 60,000 Inuit, said in 2015 that it wasn’t right for any team to be named after an ethnic group.He called the term Eskimo a relic of a past in which Inuit people had no control over their lives or even what they were called. He said he would be offended if someone called him Eskimo.(CTV Edmonton, The Canadian Press)last_img read more

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Suspect in Hamilton Good Samaritan shooting arrested along with female police

first_imgHAMILTON – Police say a man wanted in connection the fatal shooting of a Good Samaritan in Hamilton has been arrested.Yosif Al-Hasnawi — described by police as a brave young man who was trying to do the right thing — was shot when he tried to intervene as two men were accosting an older man in downtown Hamilton on Saturday night.A second-degree murder warrant was issued on Monday for 19-year-old Dale Burningsky King, who police say was arrested Thursday afternoon in Hagersville, Ont.Hamilton police say a female arrested at the same time is charged with accessory after the fact to murder.A 20-year-old man who was arrested on Monday in connection with the shooting also faces a charge of accessory after the fact to murder.last_img

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LA court to decide merits of Crystal Castles lawsuit over sex abuse

first_imgA California court will determine whether a defamation suit filed by Crystal Castles songwriter Ethan Kath will proceed against the Toronto duo’s former singer, who publicly claimed he sexually abused her for years.Kath seeks unspecified damages in documents filed in a Los Angeles Superior Court under his birth name Claudio Palmieri.The document alleges that online accusations made by Alice Glass, whose real name is Margaret Osborn, destroyed Kath’s reputation and caused the cancellation of a North American tour worth more than US$300,000.The case targets Glass and other unidentified parties in complaints including defamation, conspiracy and breach of contract.In seeking to quash the case, lawyer Vicki Greco of Collinson Law says her client was exercising her First Amendment right to free speech and was emboldened by the #MeToo movement.“She feels like this is another attempt to assert some type of power or abuse,” Greco said Monday of Glass, who moved to Los Angeles.“To me it’s just another manoeuvre of manipulation because the evidence that they have presented is thoroughly lacking for him to refute any of this.”Kath has denied allegations of abuse. None of the allegations have been proven in court.Greco’s motion to dismiss the case will be heard Feb. 23.On that date, Kath will have to prove a probability of winning his suit, in which he is demanding a jury trial.Kath, who filed suit in November 2017, is seeking compensation including unspecified general, special and punitive damages.The dispute traces back to October, when Glass posted a lengthy online message to fans alleging she was abused by Kath.She wrote on her website that Kath abused her dating back to when she was 15 and he was 25.She alleges he was manipulative and controlling during a relationship in which he gave her drugs and alcohol, and that she suffered physical and emotional abuse that included non-consensual sex.A loss for Glass would not only be devastating for her claims, but would have broad implications for the burgeoning movement of female empowerment, says Greco.“It would tend to make women think twice before they mustered enough courage to come out,” she says.“Obviously, it’s very difficult to come out and report an event that occurred and you haven’t talked about it for whatever reason — there’s myriad reasons women don’t come forward — but then once you get over that hump then you have to think, ‘Oh, someone’s going to sue me.’ It’s devastating.“If the ruling is in our favour, obviously, it would be very helpful for other women and victims to feel empowered and not have to worry about the repercussions of coming forward.”Toronto police said Monday that an investigation of Kath by the sex crimes unit is ongoing.A lawyer for Kath did not immediately respond to an interview request on Monday.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version misspelled Vicki Greco’s name.last_img read more

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A traumatic stressful event Alberta wildfire took toll on park staff

first_imgThe pain would have been excruciating for two female black bears found in Waterton Lakes National Park after the Kenow Mountain wildfire tore through the rugged mountain landscape last September.One was found lying on its back with severe third-degree burns on the bottoms of all four feet. The other was barely able to walk, apparently blind and had its ears completely singed off.A wildlife health report obtained by The Canadian Press says putting the animals down was the only humane option and describes how Waterton staff shot them before Parks Canada’s wildlife unit arrived.“This was a traumatic, stressful event for some of the staff involved and assistance by mental health professionals may be required in future to help with the psychological trauma resulting from these interventions,” says the report.The document was one of several obtained under the Access to Information Act that highlighted the trying circumstances Parks Canada staffers faced as they contended with a disaster the agency described in one analysis as unprecedented in its severity and impact.On Aug. 30, a lightning strike sparked a fire in British Columbia’s Flathead Valley, which spread toward the boundary with Alberta under hot, dry conditions. Waterton was evacuated on Sept. 8, as the fire was poised to spread into the southwestern Alberta park.The day before the evacuation, Pat Thomsen, executive director of Pacific Mountain and National Parks, wrote to the national office concerned Waterton employees would not qualify for travel status in the event they would have to live temporarily in Pincher Creek, 55 kilometres away.Travel status enables employees to be reimbursed for costs such as transportation, accommodation and meals.“This is not a helpful nor compassionate answer, and needs to be reconsidered,” Thomsen wrote. “Your intervention is requested ASAP.”Parks Canada said in an emailed statement that employees who lived within park boundaries, were forced out between Sept. 8 and Sept. 21 and were still required to work were given travel status, consistent with the agency’s travel policy.The fire jumped into the park three days after the evacuation and then spread onto adjacent grassland, prompting evacuation orders in nearby communities.Notes for a phone call between Privy Council Clerk Michael Wernick and Waterton superintendent Ifan Thomas recounted how just as Waterton staff were assisting with those evacuations, one Parks Canada employee learned his house had burned.“Despite his personal situation, this employee continued to conduct the evacuation with the RCMP during the night and returned to work at 5 a.m. the next morning.”The park’s visitor centre and other buildings were lost but the townsite was spared — an outcome top brass at Parks Canada credited to the staff who installed firefighting sprinklers, removed combustible material and made other preparations as the fire approached.“As the area commander and field unit superintendent both affirmed, if it had not been for your prevention efforts, it is clear that the Waterton Lakes townsite would have been lost,” Parks Canada CEO Daniel Watson wrote in a Sept. 15 letter thanking employees.He commended them for standing “generously, compassionately and resolutely in the face of the catastrophic,” regardless of lack of sleep or having lost homes in the fire.Watson acknowledged the emotional toll the fire may take and committed that the agency would do whatever it could to offer support.“We recognize that many of you have suffered personal loss or may have had to watch others suffer catastrophic loss … Some days we are a team. Today we are a family.”Parks Canada said immediately after the fire, the agency provided mental health support to all its personnel, as well as staff from assisting agencies and contractors. All were invited to group counselling sessions and counsellors were also made available one-on-one.“Materials and information on mental health and wellness has been provided to supervisors of Parks Canada staff who were involved in the Kenow wildfire, so that they can help direct staff seeking assistance related to managing stress, mental health, or wellness concerns.”last_img read more

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Man arrested after womans body found in burnedout bar in Quebec

first_imgMONTREAL – Police have arrested a man in connection with the death of a 22-year-old woman whose body was found in a burned-out bar in Quebec’s Lanaudiere region.The suspect was arrested early Monday at a residence in Saint-Gabriel-de-Brandon, some 110 kilometres northeast of Montreal.He is being questioned by police and investigators say he is likely to face murder charges.Chloe Bellehumeur-Lemay’s lifeless body was found Sunday afternoon following a fire at the bar where she worked.Police orginally believed she died in the fire but later found signs of violence on her body.Authorities now believe the fire was deliberately set to cover Bellehumeur-Lemay’s murder.last_img

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In the news today Sept 4

first_imgFive stories in the news for Tuesday, Sept. 4———MPS TO HAVE EMERGENCY COMMITTEE MEETING ON PIPELINEMembers of the natural resources committee are meeting this afternoon for an emergency session to discuss last week’s court decision to tear up federal approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. A federal court last week ruled consultation with Indigenous communities was not robust enough for the approval to be valid. The court also said the National Energy Board hadn’t properly considered the impact of an increase in oil tanker traffic off the coast of British Columbia that will result from an expanded pipeline. Today’s meeting comes at the request of the three Conservatives and one New Democrat MP who sit on the committee.———SEX ASSAULT TRIAL FOR U.K. SAILORS TO BEGIN TODAYA trial for two British sailors accused of sexually assaulting a woman at a Nova Scotia military base is set to begin today in Halifax. Darren Smalley and Simon Radford are charged with sexual assault causing bodily harm and participating in a group sexual assault. The charges were laid following an alleged incident in barracks at 12 Wing Shearwater on April 10, 2015. The Crown had originally charged four men, but charges against two of the sailors have been dropped.———RISING OIL PRICE EXPECTED TO SPUR SPENDINGRising oil prices that encouraged more spending by small and intermediate oil and gas companies in Western Canada in the first six months of 2018 are expected to lead drilling budgets to grow even further this fall. Producers say last week’s steady march by U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate oil prices to higher than US$70 per barrel will encourage some to open their wallets. CIBC says several producers have signalled increases in their 2018 capital budgets to match expected increases in cash flow in the second half, but the market has tended to punish them with lower valuations.———MISSING, EMACIATED KILLER WHALE FOUND ALIVEAn American whale research organization says an ailing killer whale has been found alive just hours after it was announced the young orca had been separated from her family pod. In a Facebook post yesterday, the Center for Whale Research in Friday Harbour, Wash., said the female southern resident killer whale known as J50 was found mid-morning and the centre’s researchers were in the water with the animal. The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which released a statement earlier in the day about the missing orca, said J50 was still very emaciated and that a team, including the Vancouver Aquarium’s chief veterinarian, was following the orca and planned to administer a second round of antibiotics via a dart, as well as a deworming medicine if possible.———FOO FIGHTERS RESCHEDULE SHOWS AFTER GROHL LOSES VOICEThe Foo Fighters have rescheduled shows in Edmonton and Calgary after their singer lost his voice. A news release from Rogers Place in Edmonton says that following a Foo Fighters performance Saturday at Safeco Field in Seattle, Dave Grohl suffered a loss of voice and is now on vocal rest. The band was scheduled to play Rogers Place tonight and at the Calgary Scotiabank Saddledome on Thursday. The news release from Rogers Place says the band’s Concrete and Gold tour will resume Sept. 8 in Vancouver, and replacement shows for Edmonton and Calgary will happen next month.———ALSO IN THE NEWS TODAY:— The 16-year-old charged with attempted murder in the shooting of a German tourist in southern Alberta is scheduled to appear in court in Cochrane.— Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivers remarks to supporters at a Liberal fundraising event in Surrey, B.C.— Officials with a Manitoba Indigenous advocacy group will respond to a recent report that found sexual abuse and racism at hydro projects in the 1960s.— The City of Vancouver goes to court in a bid to close dozens of marijuana retailers operating without business licenses.— Lawyers appear in an Ottawa courtroom to provide an update on the Mark Norman breach of trust case. Norman was charged in March in the alleged disclosure of classified government information.— The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario will outline its next steps regarding the provincial government’s repeal of the sexual education curriculum.— Citizens challenging changes to the Quebec electoral map — supported by mayors and councillors from the west end of Montreal — announce a proposed reform of the Quebec Elections Act.last_img read more

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Smoky skies countrywide heat wave lead Environment Canadas Top 10 weather list

first_imgDave Phillips, Environment Canada’s senior climatologist, has been compiling Top 10 lists for 23 years and he says the weather is not as cut and dried as it used to be. Here are his top events for 2018:1. Smoky skies: Driven by hot, dry conditions, the number of fires was higher than last year and the area burned was double the 25-year averages. Smoke from wildfires in British Columbia and down the Pacific Coast to California darkened skies and soured air for more than 10 million Canadians.2. Canada and the global heat wave: It was hot from coast to coast. Canada Day in Ottawa was the second-warmest in more than 130 years. Three Saskatchewan cities broke all-time records with temperatures into the 40s C. In Quebec, 93 people died from heat-related causes.3. Spring and fall disappear: The coldest April on record slammed into the hottest-ever May. A few months later, the Prairie harvest ground to a halt when 30 centimetres of snow fell in some areas in September and October.4. Billion-dollar windstorm: Hundreds of thousands in Quebec and Ontario were left without power in May as 120-km/h winds snapped power poles, damaged homes and hurled tree branches into vehicles like armour-piercing spears. The clean-up tab is estimated at more than $1 billion.5. Ottawa tornadoes: A series of tornadoes tore up the boundary region between Ontario and Quebec on Sept. 21. One of them was the most powerful recorded anywhere in North America last summer. Insurance costs are expected to be about $307 million.6. British Columbia floods: A snowpack nearly twice the norm, a wet spring and high late-spring temperatures produced flooding in several river valleys in southern B.C. Almost 5,000 people were forced from their homes by river levels not seen in 50 years.7. Fast flooding in New Brunswick: Floods on the Saint John River are an old story, but even old-timers were surprised by the speed of the water in 2018. Deep snow, heavy rains and sudden heat created the largest, most damaging flood in modern New Brunswick history down river of Fredericton in April and May. The Reversing Falls stopped reversing.8. Toronto’s tiny, perfect storm: On Aug. 7, a compact storm dumped 58 millimetres of rain downtown and 72 millimetres on Toronto Island, while the suburbs and the airport got almost nothing. Two men nearly drowned in an underground parking elevator and Blue Jays baseball fans got rained on despite the closed roof at Rogers Centre.9. Cold start, long winter: Six months of it. Albertans faced wind-chill cold of -45 C on New Year’s Eve. In early January, Toronto was colder than Tuktoyaktuk, N.W.T. 10. The cruellest month: Nationally, it was the coldest April in 16 years and in 71 years if you lived through it in Ontario and Quebec. In those provinces the misery was compounded with up to 12 centimetres of freezing rain, snow and ice pellets. Windows on Parliament Hill were smashed. The CN Tower was closed after Rogers Centre was bombed by ice falling from the tower.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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Sarah McIvers aunt says school officials in China made error

first_imgThe aunt of an Alberta woman who has been released from custody in China says she believes it was a mistake by her niece’s employer that resulted in her arrest.Sarah McIver was detained earlier this month over a work-permit issue related to her teaching job, but her aunt Rhona McIver says Sarah is now on her way back to her hometown of Drumheller, Alta.Rhona McIver said she believes her niece arrived in China to learn that the school she’d planned to teach at no longer had a job for her, so officials gave her work at another school.“That’s where the mistake got made,” McIver said from Drumheller in an interview Saturday.“She probably didn’t even think about it.”McIver’s arrest followed those of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, two Canadians living and working in China, on allegations they were harming China’s national security.China arrested Kovrig and Spavor separately after Canadian authorities detained a Chinese technology executive in Vancouver. Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of electronics giant Huawei Technologies, is wanted in the United States on allegations she lied to American banks as part of an effort to get around sanctions on Iran.China and Canada both insisted McIver’s case was different from Kovrig’s and Spavor’s.Rhona McIver said Sarah’s mother and sister have driven to B.C. to pick her up. She explained that while in China, McIver adopted a puppy, and even though she was able to fly from China to Canada with the dog, there was a problem flying it to Calgary.“One morning she was going to school and somebody threw out some pups, so she rescued one,” McIver said, adding they could be back in Drumheller by Saturday evening.McIver said her niece like to travel and had been to China before, but only as a tourist.A spokeswoman for China’s Foreign Ministry said last week that a Canadian woman had received an administrative penalty for illegal employment but did not provide further details.A spokesman with Global Affairs Canada confirmed Friday that a Canadian citizen who was detained in China this month was released and has returned to Canada, but would not release further information due to provisions under the Privacy Act.last_img read more

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Stars Gather At TigerTime Fundraiser

first_imgTigerTime campaign celebrity supporters, including actors Abi Titmuss and Peter Egan and designer Elizabeth Emanuel, gathered in London last week to celebrate an absolutely fabulous £10,000 fundraiser.Abi Titmuss with Emre ErtukThe money, raised through the sale of a one-off custom made designer handbag created by New York handbag designer, Emre Ertuk, will be used to fund anti-poaching and educational awareness programmes supported by TigerTime and the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation in India, Russia and Thailand.The handbag was sold to Turkish television presenter and producer, Nilgun Colak.Commenting on the plight of the tiger actor Peter Egan said: “Tigers are in our dreams when we are children, and they must remain in our lives when we are adults. Only we can make this happen. Our legacy must be to create not destroy. I support the TigerTime campaign and together we can save the tiger.”“It is amazing that a fashion brand and TigerTime have worked together to produce vital funds for tiger conservation. TigerTime is a crucial campaign for the survival of the wild tiger and will always have my loyal support,” added actress Abi Titmuss.Among the celebrities supporting TigerTime at the event were actor Peter Egan, award winning actress Abi Titmuss, fashion designer Elizabeth Emanuel, presenter Wincey Willis and TV vet Zara Boland. TigerTime is lucky to have such dedicated and passionate supporters behind the campaign that care deeply about the future of the wild tiger. For a full list of TigerTime celebrity supporters – such as Paul McCartney, Ricky Gervais and Joanna Lumley – click here, and for more on TigerTime (a campaign run by the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation), visit TigerTime.info.The TigerTime team would like to thank Emre Ertuk, Nilgun Colak and Meera Gandhi, founder of the Giving Back Foundation who hosted the reception at her London home.last_img read more

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Breaking Bad Star Wants To Cut The Bull Now About Bullying

first_imgChildren with physical disabilities are twice as likely to be bullied, impacting their educational, physical and emotional development. In support of National Bullying Prevention Month, Shriners Hospitals for Children and award-winning actor RJ Mitte are partnering to encourage teens and adults alike to join them and help end bullying.Born with cerebral palsy, Mitte was treated by the medical experts at Shriners Hospitals for Children for most of his childhood. He has since overcome many of the physical and verbal effects of cerebral palsy. Now, as a Love to the Rescue ambassador for Shriners Hospitals for Children, Mitte advocates for accepting people for who they are, regardless of their physical appearances.“My disability made me a target for bullies,” said Mitte. “I was harassed, knocked down and even had my hand broken. But, I was lucky. I had my friends, my family and Shriners Hospitals for Children to help me become stronger – inside and out.”#CutTheBull reminds everyone that even though someone may look, talk or walk differently, they should be seen for who they are and what they can accomplish. At CutTheBullNow.org supporters can share Mitte’s story and take a pledge to be the one in their school or community to take a stand against bullying.Shriners Hospitals for Children provides specialty pediatric care for children with orthopaedic conditions, spinal cord injuries, burns, and cleft lip and palate, regardless of a family’s ability to pay. Many of its patients experience severe physical disabilities or visible scars, which puts them at a greater risk of being bullied.“At Shriners Hospitals for Children we treat the whole child, providing the highest level of both physical and psychological care to our patients. We encourage our young patients to be proud of who they are and to see beyond their disability,” stated Dale Stauss, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Shriners Hospitals for Children. “Challenging the public to stop bullying kids with disabilities is just another way we send Love to the rescue.”Visit CutTheBullNow.org to learn more.last_img read more

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AARP The Magazine Announces 14th Annual Movies for Grownups Award Winners

first_imgThe Theory of Everything, the biographical romantic drama depicting the physical and emotional journey of theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, has earned the 2014 Movies for Grownups Best Picture award from the editors of AARP The Magazine.Celebrating 2014’s standout filmmakers, actors, actresses and movies that bear unique relevance for the 50+ audience, AARP has announced the official winners of its 14th Annual Movies for Grownups Awards.Top honors go to Julianne Moore as “Best Actress” for her heartbreaking portrayal of a woman’s battle with early onset Alzheimer’s in Still Alice, and to Steve Carell as “Best Actor” for his chilling depiction as wannabe wrestling coach John E. du Pont in Foxcatcher. Rene Russo snags “Best Supporting Actress” for her comeback role in Nightcrawler; and J.K. Simmons earns the title of “Best Supporting Actor” for his menacing veracity in Whiplash. Additionally, Kevin Costner will also be presented with the esteemed Movies for Grownups Career Achievement Award. This year’s award recipients will be celebrated at AARP’s Annual Movies for Grownups Gala, to be held in Los Angeles on February 2nd and hosted by comedian and actor John Leguizamo.“The films represented on this year’s list are a reflection of Hollywood’s increased focus on creating compelling storylines that directly appeal to the 50+ audience,” said Bob Love, Editor-in-Chief of AARP The Magazine. “We’re thrilled to see the continued growth in the number of large, studio-driven films that focus on this important demographic and are extremely excited to recognize this year’s best writers, directors, and actors over 50 for their inspirational and exceptional work at our annual awards gala.”The 14th Annual Movies for Grownups® Award winners are: • Career Achievement: Kevin Costner • Best Picture: The Theory of Everything • Best Actress: Julianne Moore, Still Alice • Best Actor: Steve Carell, Foxcatcher • Best Supporting Actress: Rene Russo, Nightcrawler • Best Supporting Actor: J.K. Simmons, Whiplash • Best Director: Richard Linklater, Boyhood • Best Screenwriter: Nick Hornby and Cheryl Strayed, Wild • Best Grownup Love Story: Love is Strange • Best Comedy: Chef • Best Documentary: Keep on Keepin’ On • Breakthrough Achievement: Israel Horovitz, Director, My Old Lady • Best Intergenerational Film: St. Vincent • Best Buddy Picture: Land Ho! • Best Time Capsule: Big Eyes • Best Movie for Grownups Who Refuse to Grow Up: The Lego Movie • Best Foreign Film: DiplomacyThe awards gala will raise funds for the AARP Foundation, AARP’s affiliated charity, which works in communities across the nation to help struggling older adults meet their basic need for nutritious food, safe and affordable housing, adequate income and much-needed personal connections. With support from Chase Credit Card Services, this year’s Gala will also support the Foundation’s work to end older adult hunger.For more information about AARP’s Movies for Grownups Awards, click here and www.aarp.org/movies. The entire list of award winners will also be featured in the February/March issue of AARP The Magazine, available in homes February 1st.Movies for Grownups, which now includes weekly reviews an award-winning radio program, an annual film festival, and year-round coverage in AARP The Magazine and online, was started in 2002 by the editors of AARP The Magazine.last_img read more

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Augies Quest 10 Year Reunion Bash Raises More Than 18 Million for

first_imgWith support from loyal sponsors and dedicated fitness professionals, the Augie’s Quest 10 Year Reunion Bash exceeded its own expectations by raising more than $1.8 million for ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease) research on Friday, March 13.John Ondrasik of Five for Fighting performed at Augie’s Quest 10 Year Reunion Bash. Credit/Copyright: Steve CohnThe event is presented by IHRSA (International Health, Racquet, and Sportsclub Association).The 10 Year Reunion Bash took place at the JW Marriott, Los Angeles, and featured headline entertainment from Grammy-nominated recording artist, Gavin DeGraw. The start of the evening also featured a special performance from Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter John Ondrasik of Five For Fighting, and Natalie Morales from NBC’s Today Show served as Master of Ceremonies.“I am so grateful to my friends in the fitness industry for embracing this event every year and helping us fund this important research. Ten years ago, at the first BASH, I didn’t think I would see this day. Now I’m here watching my former peers stand by me for the 10th year in a row. It’s unbelievable,” said Augie Nieto, founder of Augie’s Quest.This year’s sponsors included: 24 Hour Fitness, The Bay Club Company, Technogym, Zumba, The Atlantic Club, Planet Fitness, Crunch Fitness, Newtown Athletic and Life Fitness, among others.The purpose of Augie’s Quest has always been to fund research and drug development aimed at ending ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease. Since 2007, Augie’s Quest has raised over $44 million in support of finding effective ALS treatments- making it the largest individual fundraising program for ALS!last_img read more

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Lady Gaga And Diane Warren Release Song Spotlighting Sexual Assaults On College

first_imgDirector Catherine Hardwicke, six-time Grammy winner Lady Gaga and seven-time Oscar nominee and Grammy Award winning songwriter Diane Warren have teamed up to release a campus sexual assault public service announcement (PSA) tied to the critically acclaimed documentary THE HUNTING GROUND.Hardwicke (TWILIGHT, 13, MISS YOU ALREADY) directed the PSA, featuring the film’s original song “Til It Happens To You” written by Warren and Lady Gaga and performed by Lady Gaga.The PSA reunites Hardwicke with TWILIGHT star Nikki Reed.A portion of proceeds from the sale of the song will be donated to organizations helping survivors of sexual assault.“After watching THE HUNTING GROUND, I was inspired by the survivors who had the courage to tell their stories,” said Warren. “This song, with its message of hope and empowerment, is my heartfelt tribute to them and will also resonate with anyone who has been bullied, lost a loved one or just feels alone in the world.”Lady Gaga has been a vocal advocate on this issue. Earlier this year, she penned an op-ed with Governor Andrew Cuomo calling for the passage of New York State’s “Enough is Enough” bill, saying “We have a responsibility to the young men and women of this country to stand up against sexual violence everywhere. Everyone – from lawmakers and educators to advocates like Born This Way Foundation and the students themselves – need to join forces on this issue. Together, we must create the scaffolding necessary to foster the mental, emotional, and physical health of all young people.”The legislation included a uniform definition of affirmative consent as well as comprehensive procedures and guidelines for colleges. The bill was signed into law by the Governor in July.Hardwicke was moved to create and direct the PSA after seeing THE HUNTING GROUND and feeling compelled to get involved. “I hope that this PSA, with its raw and truthful portrayals, will send a clear message that we need to support these courageous survivors and end this epidemic plaguing our college campuses.”THE HUNTING GROUND, from Oscar nominated filmmakers Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering, was distributed by RADiUS, the boutique label of the Weinstein Company. After premiering at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, the film was released theatrically and has subsequently screened on hundreds of college campuses across the country. Currently available on iTunes and VOD, THE HUNTING GROUND is co-produced by CNN and will air on the network this fall.last_img read more

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More Big Names Join Global Citizen Festival

first_imgOver a dozen world leaders and prominent activists have announced their on-stage participation in the 2015 Global Citizen Festival.Among the names are Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Malala Fund co-founder, Malala Yousafzai; UN Messenger of Peace with a special focus on climate change, Leonardo DiCaprio; U2 lead singer and cofounder of ONE, Bono; Sir Richard Branson; UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon; Bill and Melinda Gates; World Bank Group President, Dr Jim Yong Kim; Norwegian Prime Minister, Erna Solberg; Swedish Prime Minister, Stefan Lofven; Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan; Prime Minister of Luxembourg, Xavier Bettel; the Prime Minister of Malta, Joseph Muscat; U.S. Senator Chris Coons; and U.S. Representative Charlie Dent.From the private sector, leading advocates, including: Facebook Chairman and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg; Unilever CEO, Paul Polman; CEO of Gucci, Marco Bizzarri; H&M Conscious Foundation Acting Global Manager, Maria Bystedt; Caterpillar Foundation President, Michele Sullivan; Stephen Bird, CEO of Global Consumer Banking, Citi, Ericsson Group President and CEO, Hans Vestberg; Wikipedia Founder and Wikia Co-Founder, Jimmy Wales; AOL Inc. CEO, Tim Armstrong; TED Curator, Chris Anderson; CEO of WPP plc, Sir Martin Sorrell; Safaricom CEO, Bob Collymore; Ooredoo Group CEO, Dr. Nasser Marafih; former Australian Prime Minister and Chair of the Global Partnership for Education, Julia Gillard; Executive Director of the Earth Institute, Professor Jeffrey Sachs; Telenor Group Vice President and Deputy Head of Corporate Affairs, Ragnhild Mathisen; and special guest Big Bird of Sesame Street will also take the stage, asking the world not to be bystanders but to take action to ensure the Global Goals are not just known globally, but are achieved.The 2015 Global Citizen Festival will also feature on-stage video messages and commitments from Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi; President of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos; and Vice President of Malawi, Saulos Chilima. The First Daughter of Rwanda, Ange Kagame; her father President Paul Kagame; South African WASH Minister, Nomvula Mokonyane; USAID Acting Administrator Ambassador Alfonso E. Lenhardt, and the President of Malawi, His Excellency Pro. Arthur Peter Mutharika will also appear during the Festival.This year’s Festival will also feature the Global Citizen Festival Honorary Congressional Host Committee, comprised of leading members from the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. The committee will include: Senator Robert P. Casey Jr. (PA), Senator Thad Cochran (MS), Senator Bob Corker (TN), Senator Barbara A. Mikulski (MD) and Senator Chris Murphy (CT), Congressman Earl Blumenauer (OR-3), Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20), Congressman Chaka Fattah (PA-2), Congressman Richard L. Hanna (NY-22), Congressman Raul Grijalva (AZ-3), Congresswoman Barbara Lee (CA-13), Congressman John Lewis (GA-5), Congresswoman Nita M. Lowey (NY-17), Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN-4), Congressman James McGovern (MA-2), Congressman Ted Poe (TX-2), Congressman Adam Schiff (CA-28), Congressman Paul D. Tonko (NY-20), and Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23).They join a star-studded lineup of musicians and celebrity hosts including Stephen Colbert, Deborra-lee Furness and Hugh Jackman, Salma Hayek Pinault, Kerry Washington, and Olivia Wilde, alongside 60,000 global citizens on the Great Lawn of New York City’s Central Park on September 26, 2015. The free-ticketed concert will feature headlining performances from Pearl Jam, Beyonce, Ed Sheeran and Coldplay.“I’m proud to go to Central Park to support this great initiative and show Sweden’s unwavering commitment to fight inequality, together with the global community. We are ready to be part of a new push for the eradication of poverty, especially through granting access to water, sanitation and hygiene around the world. It’s a huge task we have in front of us – so let’s roll up our sleeves and get to work,” stated Swedish Prime Minister, Stefan Lofven.“2015 is an unprecedented moment for global action. This extraordinary group of leaders, activists and advocates have the power to help realize the ambitious Global Goals, changing the lives of billions. I have never been more proud to be a part of the Global Citizen movement!”, said Hugh Evans, CEO, The Global Poverty Project.Proud core partners of the 2015 Global Citizen Festival include: presenting partner Gucci and the CHIME FOR CHANGE campaign, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Citi, Unilever, YouTube, TIDAL, Google, iHeartRadio, Clear Channel Outdoor, msnbc, New York City Department of Parks & Recreation, H&M, and T- Mobile. Supporting partners are BBC Worldwide, Universal Music Group Distribution, Pratt Foundation, Waislitz Foundation, The Huffington Post, Milk Studios, RYOT and Riot House.The 2015 Global Citizen Festival will air live from Central Park on MSNBC and MSNBC.com from 3-10 p.m. ET. YouTube will also livestream the Festival on youtube.com/globalcitizen, presented by T-Mobile, and an audio feed of the concert will also be simulcast live on the “Global Citizen Radio” digital station on iHeartRadio, and digitally streamed on the innovative music and entertainment platform, TIDAL. The Festival will be produced by Emmy Award-winning producer, Ken Ehrlich (Grammy Awards).For more information about the Festival, visit: www.globalcitizenfestival.com.last_img read more

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Eau de Buble Vancouver singer Michael Buble preps new fragrance video

first_imgAdvertisement Advertisement Advertisement The perfume has not been officially named yet, although Buble did give a sneak peek at the packaging for the fragrance a few days ago via Twitter.A sneak peak of the gorgeous package for Michael’s new fragrance – the name’s still a secret! #MichaelBublePerfume pic.twitter.com/9gkMNKrYJ9— Michael Bublé (@michaelbuble) August 5, 2016Buble will debut the fragrance on the Home Shopping Network on Aug. 26.The singer recently underwent vocal cord surgery, forcing him to cancel two important performances: one honouring him at the Canadian Governor General Performance Arts Award Gala (June 11) and a tribute to Marvin Gaye at the Kennedy Center (June 5). Login/Register With: Burnaby-bred pop crooner Michael Buble is getting his funk on — the classy kind of funk, that is.Buble is currently developing a new fragrance for women that will bear his name. Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitterlast_img read more

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The Handmaids Tale Casts Amanda Brugel

first_img LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitter Amanda Brugel (CNW Group/ACTRA Toronto) Advertisement Login/Register With:center_img Facebook Advertisement Amanda Brugel (Room) has booked a recurring role opposite Elisabeth Moss, Joseph Fiennes and Yvonne Strahovski in Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale, the upcoming straight-to-series drama based on Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel. The series from MGM Television tells the story of life in the dystopia of Gilead, a totalitarian society in what was formerly part of the United States.last_img

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82 women walk red carpet in Cannes film festival protest

first_img Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Eighty-two women climbed the steps of the Palais des Festivals at the Cannes Film Festival in an unprecedented red carpet protest to press for improved gender equality in the film industry.The number of stars, filmmakers and film industry professionals ascending the steps represented the number of female filmmakers who have been selected to compete at Cannes during the festival’s seven-decade history.In contrast to their 82, 1,866 films directed by men have been picked for the prestigious festival lineup. From left: Jury members Kristen Stewart, Lea Seydoux, Khadja Nin, Ava Duvernay, Cate Blanchett and director Agnes Varda walk the red carpet. (Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)The other two — Nadine Labaki’s Capernaum, and Alice Rohrwacher’s Happy as Lazzaro — are to premiere next week.Cannes has come under increasing scrutiny in recent years over the number of female directors selected into its main slate, considered one of the most esteemed achievements in cinema. Jane Campion is the only female filmmaker to ever win the Palme.The festival supported Saturday’s protest. Festival director Thierry Fremaux earlier this week hailed Saturday’s event as a way for women “to affirm their presence.”Fremaux has repeatedly insisted that the festival chooses its films purely based on quality. But he’s also signaled that the festival is reanalyzing its procedures and making its selection committees gender-balanced From centre left: Sofia Boutella, Salma Hayek and Patty Jenkins stand as part of 82 film industry professionals on the steps of the Palais des Festivals to protest pervasive gender inequality in the film industry at the 71st Cannes film festival on Saturday. (Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP) Advertisement Facebook Advertisement Login/Register With: Advertisement Organizers said the event was orchestrated by the Time’s Up movement and the French movement known as 5020×2020 to show “how hard it is still to climb the social and professional ladder” for women.It brought an array of film industry professionals to the Cannes red carpet, including actresses Salma Hayek and Jane Fonda, Wonder Woman filmmaker Patty Jenkins and French director Agnes Varda, a recipient of an honorary Palme d’Or at Cannes.The number of stars, filmmakers and film industry professionals ascending the steps represented the number of female filmmakers who have been selected to compete at Cannes during the festival’s seven-decade history. (Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)Also joining were the five female members of this year’s Cannes jury: Cate Blanchett, Kristen Stewart, Ava DuVernay, Lea Seydoux and Burundian singer Khadja Nin. Blanchett read a statement atop the Palais steps in English; Varda read it in French.“Women are not a minority in the world, yet the current state of the industry says otherwise,” Blanchett said. “We stand together on these steps today as a symbol of our determination to change and progress.”“The stairs of our industry must be accessible to all,” she concluded. “Let’s climb.”The protest was held ahead of the premiere of French filmmaker Eva Husson’s Girls of the Sun, which is about a Kurdish battalion of women soldiers. Husson is one of three female filmmakers out of the 21 movies in competition for the Palme d’Or this year.last_img read more

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