No easy fix for upgrading FNs fire services

first_imgAPTN National NewsFires in remote First Nations communities often come with deadly consequences.They are common in winter when people heat their homes with woodstoves or dangerous electric heaters. In many First Nations communities, fire departments also lag behind other Canadian fire services.APTN National News reporter Annette Francis finds out that there is no easy fix to this problem.last_img

Roseau rallies for women

first_imgAPTN National NewsOn International Women’s Day, community members from Roseau River Anishinabe First Nation gathered.They honoured women and raised awareness about violence in the community.APTN’s Matt Thordarson has this story.last_img

Group says 12 out of 78 women girls killed across Canada in

first_imgThe Canadian PressOTTAWA – A research group from Guelph, Ont., says in the first half of 2018, 78 women and girls have been killed and 12 of them were Indigenous.The Canadian Femicide Observatory for Justice and Accountability is hoping to draw more attention to femicide, the killing of women and girls, by publicly disclosing the names of Canadian victims.It issued a listing this week of 78 victims identified through media reports across the country in the first half of 2018.The list reads like a journalistic catalogue of violence against women and girls, mostly domestic in nature, identifying victims by age, location and name, where possible. In a number of cases, however, the names are missing.“This is largely due to a growing trend in some jurisdictions not to release names of victims,” the observatory said in a report on its website.“We feel it is still important to include an entry for this individual to remember her as a femicide victim.”The majority of cases were reported in Ontario, followed by Quebec, Manitoba and Alberta.Of the 78 victims counted, 12 of them are listed as Indigenous, a factor the report’s authors said was important to highlight, “given the high risks faced by Indigenous women and girls and the ongoing national inquiry into this situation.”But the authors note such cases are often under-counted because media reports, on which the numbers are based, don’t always include details such as ethnicity.The observatory was established last year by the University of Guelph’s Centre for the Study of Social and Legal Responses to Violence with a goal of documenting femicide cases and the responses to those deaths by governments and other institutions.There were several media reports from January through June of this year of “suspicious deaths” or disappearances of women and girls that have not been included in the report, along with deaths resulting from auto accidents or other clearly random acts, said the report’s authors.However, the report said the number of victims could be revised upwards, depending on the outcomes of investigations into those deaths.last_img read more

Irving Oil pleads guilty fined after probe into 2013 Lac Megantic disaster

first_imgSAINT JOHN, N.B. – Irving Oil has been ordered to pay $4 million after pleading guilty to 34 counts stemming from the investigation into the 2013 rail disaster in Lac Megantic, Que.The charges under the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act result from a joint investigation by Transport Canada and the RCMP that was prompted by the deadly train derailment.On July 6, 2013, a train carrying 7.7 million litres of crude oil sped toward the small Quebec town at 104 km/h before derailing, killing 47 people in the resulting fire and explosions.“Today, we close another chapter in this tragic event,” Transportation Minister Marc Garneau wrote in a statement Thursday.The federal Public Prosecution Service said Thursday that a provincial court judge in Saint John, N.B., ordered Irving Oil to pay fines totalling $400,320.It will also pay nearly $3.6 million for the implementation of research programs in safety standards under the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act and its regulations.The offences were committed over eight months, from November 2012 to July 2013, involving transportation of approximately 14,000 rail cars of crude oil for Irving Oil.Following the train derailment in Lac Megantic, the investigation by Transport Canada and the RCMP revealed that Irving Oil had not complied with all applicable safety requirements by not classifying the crude oil being carried by trains as a dangerous good.In addition, the shipping documents on board the trains were incorrect.The statement also says Irving Oil did not adequately train its employees in the transportation of dangerous goods, an offence under the act.Irving Oil issued its own statement, saying it believes strongly in the importance of safety and regulatory compliance, and that it takes the charges seriously.“The misclassification of crude oil did not cause or contribute to the railway accident in any way,” the statement reads.Irving Oil said it has undertaken a comprehensive review of its procedures relating to the transportation of dangerous goods and now has an enhanced training program for its employees.“The company will remain vigilant in all of our operations, upholding our commitment to safety for employees, customers, and communities,” it wrote.Garneau said rail safety remains his top priority.“Transport Canada continues to closely monitor the safety of rail operations and the system, as well as the safe transportation of dangerous goods by all modes of transport across Canada,” he wrote.(The Canadian Press, Global News)last_img read more

Canadas dairy farmers say theyve given enough in past trade deals

first_imgMONTREAL – Canada’s dairy industry says it shouldn’t bear any additional hardship in NAFTA renegotiations after having been forced to give up so much in past trade deals.If the United States wants increased access to Canada, it should rejoin the Trans-Pacific Partnership that granted a 3.25 per cent quota that was expected to be filled mainly by the U.S., said Dairy Farmers of Ontario CEO Graham Lloyd.“The TPP is the vehicle that they should be going to,” he said in an interview Wednesday. “They shouldn’t be looking for NAFTA to gain access to the dairy market.”Lloyd said giving the Americans any more access to Canada won’t make a dent in the massive daily overproduction in three large milk producing states, but would cause serious harm to the Canadian dairy farmer.He is among dairy industry advocates who say Canada should have recalibrated the amount of foreign access permitted under TPP when American President Donald Trump withdrew from the trade deal. Maintaining the 3.25 per cent quota means that dairy from Australia and New Zealand will displace American product.Dairy farmers say they’re concerned about NAFTA renegotiations given how much of the Canadian market has already been given away under the World Trade Organization, the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement and TPP.More than 15 per cent the Canadian dairy market will be opened to imports with the implementation of TPP. That includes 10 per cent from trade deals in the 1990s and two per cent as part of the Canada-Europe trade deal.New Brunswick farmer Michael Bouma said he’s hoping the federal government will honour its commitment to defend supply management despite intense pressure from U.S. negotiators.Dismantling of the current system would be devastating for rural communities and farmers in Quebec, Ontario and Atlantic Canada, forcing many small farms to close, he said.“The amount of farmers left would be less than a tenth of what we have presently,” Bouma said from the Bathurst area of New Brunswick, where he milks about 120 cows.“It’s only the more efficient farms that might be able to hold on. Certainly the smaller mom and pop farms that may be milking 30, 40 cows would definitely be having a very hard time.”Ontario dairy farmer Ralph Dietrich, who milks about 180 cows north of the city of Guelph, said farmers are disappointed with the TPP outcome.However, he said it gives the industry a sense of urgency to fight so that NAFTA doesn’t cause a further erosion.Dietrich said the threat is coming as the sector has been enjoying growth and millions of dollars have been spent modernizing facilities.“It could prove as a pivot point to re-energize us as an industry — to be even more diligent with respect to ensuring that we’ve already given at the office and we don’t need to do it again through NAFTA.”The Dairy Farmers of Canada said Ottawa must recognize the cumulative impact of the trade deals.Francois Dumontier of the Quebec Dairy Producers said while Canada has increased foreign imports, the Americans restrict access to its market to less than three per cent of internal consumption.Meanwhile, exports from the U.S. to Canada have surged to 178,000 tonnes in 2016 from 24,000 tonnes in 1993, he said.“If they want to have this market access they have to rejoin the TPP but we will not be giving twice to the Americans.”Federal Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay insisted the government fully supports the supply-managed sector and that it intends to consult with industry stakeholders about potential compensation.The supply management system was created in the early 1970s in response to wide swings in prices and interprovincial trade disputes as technology and other developments disrupted the agricultural markets.The system sets prices and protects Canadian farmers from competition, creating stability for dairy, egg, chicken and turkey producers.It also blocks out foreign production from the Canadian market through the imposition of tariffs, a mechanism that has resulted in long-running disputes with Canada’s trading partners.– With files from Andy Blatchford in Ottawa.Follow @RossMarowits on Twitter.last_img read more

Council to vote Monday on Calgarys 2026 Olympic bid

first_imgCalgary city council will vote Monday whether to continue down the road of bidding for the 2026 Winter Olympics and Paralympics.Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi wants to salvage a potential bid from “the ditch.”He wants to wait and find out if a bid would be a financial boon to the city that also hosted the 1988 Winter Olympics.“I think it’s fair to say it’s a bit in the ditch,” Nenshi said Tuesday. “The question is, is it worth pulling it out of the ditch or not and I think it is.“It’s not a good time to take the off-ramp. Give us until June to see the money and then we can take the off-ramp if the money doesn’t work.“I think it would be a real shame for council to not to try to pull this thing out of the ditch between now and June.”City council has been wrestling with continuing work on a potential bid. A vote on a slate of recommendations to keep a bid on the table narrowly passed 8-6 in March.Councillors on a priority and finance committee passed a motion 9-1 on Tuesday for council to state its support or non-support for a bid Monday.“Let’s make this decision early before we spend more money, before we take the next big step,” Coun. Druh Farrell said.The price tag of a bid is estimated at $30 million with the city, provincial and federal governments splitting the cost roughly three ways.The Canadian and Alberta governments have stated support for the formation of a bid corporation, with the provincial government in favour of holding a plebiscite to measure public support for the games.“If there’s a deal to be had that Calgarians would like and allows us to maintain 40-year-old facilities and build them when there’s no other source of funding to do so, build facilities like a fieldhouse where there’s no other source of funding to do that, build affordable housing where there’s no other source of funding to do that, and it means billions of dollars of Calgary taxpayers money being returned to Calgary from the federal and provincial government, I’m willing to take that to the people,” Nenshi said.A city report said a plebiscite would cost just under $2 million and would be conducted between October and February 2019.“The only thing I’ve said about a plebiscite is we’ve got to figure out who is paying for it and the timing has to be right, so the citizens have the information they need to make a decision,” Nenshi said.“The bid budget is $30 million, which doesn’t include a plebiscite.”The International Olympic Committee’s deadline to submit a bid is January 2019. The IOC will vote on the host city in September 2019.“If the plebiscite starts to sneak too much in 2019, then I start to get nervous we’re spending a lot of throwaway money and I hate spending throwaway money,” Nenshi said.“I think something in the autumn, in the October time frame, makes sense to me logistically.”The committee heard Tuesday that Calgary has already spent approximately $6 million on exploring a bid. That sum includes the work of the Calgary Bid Exploration Committee.CBEC estimated the cost of hosting the games at $4.6 billion with games revenue covering almost half.But Kyle Ripley, the director of the city’s bid project team that continued CBEC’s work, told city council last month that estimate is likely too low when inflation, contingency and endowment funds are calculated.The IOC said in January it would provide US$925 million to the successful 2026 bid city.Other cities considering bids include Graz, Austria; Stockholm, Sweden; Sapporo, Japan; Erzurum, Turkey; Sion, Switzerland and a joint effort from Cortina d’Ampezzo, Milan and Turin, Italy.Sapporo (1972), Cortina d’Ampezzo (1956) and Turin (2006) have hosted the Winter Olympics before.last_img read more

PBO pegs cost of extended drug patents at 270M a year for

first_imgOTTAWA – An extension of drug patent protections in the Canada-EU free trade deal could end up costing Canadians an estimated $392 million a year, and federal coffers up to $270 million more annually, says a new report from the parliamentary budget officer.The report released Thursday sets out to put a price tag on a central — and controversial — element of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, or CETA, that went into effect last September.Federal legislation that enacted the deal added two years to the existing 20-year patent protections for drugs containing new medicinal ingredients, which accounted for about one-third of all patented drugs sold in 2015.As a result, drug companies now enjoy a 22-year period of market exclusivity for eligible drugs before cheaper, generic versions can be produced and sold. Canadians spent $15.2 billion on patented drugs in 2015, says the review board responsible for monitoring patented drug prices.In the interim, the cost of pharmaceuticals will only continue to go up, said Philip Bagnoli, a senior economist who helped compile the report.“The higher drug prices are, which will go up in the future, the larger the gap is going to be between the patented price and the non-patented price,” Bagnoli said.“Drug companies will tell you that developing drugs is getting more and more expensive over time.”The estimated figures — based on 2015 data — are meant to provide an “illustrative analysis” to study the potential impact of the two-year extension, the report says. None of the drugs on the market were eligible for the extension when it was granted last year.The PBO’s cost figures don’t include the spending that would come from institutions like hospitals and long-term care facilities, which would cause the estimates to rise significantly — to more than $500 million a year in the case of consumers.Most of the additional government expense would go toward provincial public drug programs, the report says. Those costs, estimated at around $214 million a year, are borne by Ottawa under a commitment the former Conservative government made with the provinces in 2013.When the federal government first studied Canada’s patent laws, it was with the understanding that drug manufacturers would increase research and development conducted within the country, Bagnoli said.“Drug companies promised us they would do a lot more research in Canada in exchange for patent protection,” he said. “They haven’t lived up to that.”last_img read more

Calfrac revenue doubles as stronger oil prices drive US fracking demand

first_imgCALGARY – One of Canada’s biggest oilfield well-fracking companies is reporting more than doubling its first-quarter revenue compared with the same period last year.Calfrac Well Services says it had revenue of $583 million in the three months ended March 31, up 117 per cent over the $269 million it brought in a year earlier.It says its net income was $1.9 million or one cent per share versus a loss of $21.7 million or 16 cents per share a year earlier.CEO Fernando Aguilar says the results were mainly due to ongoing growth in its United States operations, driven by strong commodity prices and “very supportive” regulatory and fiscal environments there.Calfrac reports in disclosure documents it increased its staff count in Canada, the U.S., Russia and Argentina to 3,800 as of the end of 2017, up from just 2,800 a year earlier.The market for Calfrac’s services, which include hydraulic fracturing or fracking of oil and gas wells after they’ve been drilled to boost production, has been improving since the oil price shock of 2014 resulted in hundreds of crew layoffs and forced it to put many pieces of equipment in storage.During the first quarter, Calfrac says it reactivated an eighth hydraulic fracturing unit in Canada and a 16th in the United States, while moving another unit from Canada to the U.S. to take advantage of brighter prospects there.Companies in this story: (TSX:CFW)last_img read more

Alberta economy has recovered twothirds of recession losses government

first_imgEDMONTON – The Alberta government says the provincial economy has recovered about two-thirds of its losses from the last recession.It says the economy grew by 4.9 per cent last year and is expected to add 2.7 per cent this year.The government’s 2017-18 annual report says Alberta ended the year with an $8-billion deficit.That’s $2.5 billion lower than what was expected in last year’s budget.The better-than-expected results were partly due to higher bitumen royalties and investment income.The NDP government says it’s on track to return to balanced books in 2023-24.Net debt was at $19.3 billion as of March 31 — about $1 billion lower than forecast in the budget.“Our government has been clear — we are going to have the backs of Albertans. That’s why we made sure to invest in the services families need while keeping a steady hand guiding the province out of this recession,” Finance Minister Joe Ceci said in a release.“We know that we still have work to do, but we will not let up until all Albertans feel the economic recovery. We are growing an economy that is built to last.”A rebound in the energy sector, driven by improved oil prices, spearheaded the recovery.Conventional oil and gas drilling was up by 65 per cent. The manufacturing and forestry sectors also saw stronger performance.Non-renewable resource revenue was $5 billion — up $1.9 billion from the previous year and $1.2 billion higher than the budget estimate.Alberta’s population grew by nearly 58,000 residents, including more than 26,000 migrants.The province says 90,000 jobs were added in 2017. The unemployment rate was seven per cent at the end of the year, down from a recessionary peak of nine per cent in November 2016.— By Lauren Krugel in Calgarylast_img read more

Backing off auto tariffs US and EU agree to more talks

first_imgWASHINGTON – President Donald Trump and European leaders pulled back from the brink of a trade war over autos Wednesday and agreed to open talks to tear down trade barriers between the United States and the European Union.But while politicians and businesses welcomed the deal Thursday, the agreement was vague, the negotiations are sure to be contentious, and the United States remains embroiled in major trade disputes with China and other countries.In a hastily called Rose Garden appearance with Trump, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said the U.S. and the EU had agreed to hold off on new tariffs, suggesting that the United States will suspend plans to start taxing European auto imports — a move that would have marked a major escalation in trade tensions between the allies.Trump also said the EU had agreed to buy “a lot of soybeans” and increase its imports of liquefied natural gas from the U.S. And the two agreed to resolve a dispute over U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum.Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Thursday addressing steel and aluminum tariffs and counter tariffs would be covered in the first phase of talks between the U.S. and the EU. He reiterated that no new tariffs would be imposed during the negotiations and if the US concluded an agreement, “there would be no car tariffs on the EU.”Trump was travelling to Iowa and Illinois Thursday in which his trade agenda was expected to be a leading issue. The administration recently announced a $12 billion temporary aid package for farmers — including soybean producers — dealing with the impact of retaliatory tariffs.“It’s encouraging that they’re talking about freer trade rather than trade barriers and an escalating tariff war,” said Rufus Yerxa, president of the National Foreign Trade Council and a former U.S. trade official. But he said reaching a detailed trade agreement with the EU would likely prove difficult.The tone was friendlier than it has been. During a recent European trip, Trump referred to the EU as a “foe, what they do to us in trade.” The EU’s Juncker said in March, after Trump imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, that “this is basically a stupid process, the fact that we have to do this. But we have to do it. We can also do stupid.”On Wednesday, Trump and Juncker said they have agreed to work toward “zero tariffs” and “zero subsidies” on non-automotive goods.Trump told reporters it was a “very big day for free and fair trade” and later tweeted a photo of himself and Juncker in an embrace, with Juncker kissing his cheek.“Obviously the European Union, as represented by @JunckerEU and the United States, as represented by yours truly, love each other!” he wrote.The agreement was welcomed by political and business leaders in Germany, the EU’s biggest economy, though their relief was tempered with caution that details have to be firmed up.“Very demanding and intensive negotiations lie ahead of us,” German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said, vowing that “we will represent and defend our European interests just as emphatically as the U.S. does with its interests.” He said the Trump-Juncker accord was “a good start — it takes away many people’s worries that the global economy could suffer serious damage in the coming months from a trade war.”Trump campaigned on a vow to get tough on trading partners he accuses of taking advantage of bad trade deals to run up huge trade surpluses with the U.S.He has slapped taxes on imported steel and aluminum, saying they pose a threat to U.S. national security. The U.S. and EU are now working to resolve their differences over steel and aluminum — but the tariffs are still in place. And they would continue to hit U.S. trading partners like Canada, Mexico and Japan even if the U.S. and the EU cut a deal.Whatever progress was achieved Wednesday could provide some relieffor U.S. automakers. The escalating trade war and tariffs on steel and aluminum had put pressure on auto companies’ earnings. General Motors slashed its outlook, and shares of Ford Motor Co. and auto parts companies have fallen.“Our biggest exposure, our biggest unmitigated exposure, is really steel and aluminum when you look at all of the commodities,” GM CEO Mary Barra said Wednesday.Trump has also imposed tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports — a figure he has threatened to raise to $500 billion — in a dispute over Beijing’s aggressive drive to supplant U.S. technological dominance.China has counterpunched with tariffs on American products, including soybeans and pork — a shot at Trump supporters in the U.S. heartland.The EU is stepping in to ease some of U.S. farmers’ pain. Juncker said the EU “can import more soybeans from the U.S., and it will be done.”Mary Lovely, a Syracuse University economist who studies trade, said, “The Chinese are not going to be buying our soybeans, so almost by musical chairs our soybeans are going to Europe.” The trouble is, China last year imported $12.3 billion in U.S. soybeans, the EU just $1.6 billion.Trump’s announcement stunned lawmakers who arrived at the White House ready to unload concerns over the administration’s trade policies only to be quickly ushered into Rose Garden for what the chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee called “quite a startling” development.“I think everybody sort of changed what they were going to say,” said Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan.___Lisa Mascaro, Kevin Freking, Christopher Rugaber, Darlene Superville, Matthew Daly and Josh Boak in Washington and Geir Moulson in Berlin contributed to this story.last_img read more

BC first government in Canada to sue drug companies over opioids

first_imgVANCOUVER – British Columbia launched a proposed class-action lawsuit Wednesday against dozens of pharmaceutical companies, alleging they falsely marketed opioids as less addictive than other pain drugs and helped trigger an overdose crisis that has killed thousands.The lawsuit is the first of its kind in Canada and names OxyContin-maker Purdue Pharma Inc. and other major drug manufacturers. It also targets pharmacies, including Shoppers Drug Mart Corp. and its owner Loblaw Companies Ltd., claiming they should have known the quantities of opioids they were distributing exceeded any legitimate market.“Today, another three or four people will die from an overdose in British Columbia,” said Judy Darcy, the province’s minister of mental health and addictions.“Each and every person that we have lost has meant the world to someone who has cared about them and cared about their well-being. They were someone’s light, they were someone’s loved one and now they are gone.”Nearly 4,000 Canadians died from apparent opioid overdoses last year, while B.C. remained the province hardest hit by the opioid crisis, with 1,399 deaths, up from 974 in 2016, according to Statistics Canada. The province declared a public health emergency in 2016.The notice of civil claim filed in B.C. Supreme Court names 40 defendants. Statements of defence have not been filed and none of the allegations contained in the civil claim has been proven in court.B.C. is bringing the action on behalf of a class representing all federal, provincial and territorial governments and agencies, which during the period of 1996 until now paid health care, pharmaceutical and treatment costs related to opioids.The class period begins in 1996 when Purdue first introduced and began to market OxyContin in Canada.Purdue did not immediately respond to a request for comment.The B.C. government alleges that opioid manufacturers marketed and promoted the drugs in Canada as less addictive than was actually known to them, and for conditions the manufacturers knew the drugs were not effective in treating. Such marketing and promotion, the province asserts, resulted in an increase in prescription and use of all opioids.Other drug manufacturers named in the suit include Apotex Inc., Janssen Inc., Mylan N.V., Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc., Sandoz Canada Inc., Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Inc. and Valeant Canada LP.Most of the companies did not immediately respond to requests for comment.Teva said it does not comment on ongoing litigation and Sandoz said it has not seen the lawsuit and was not in a position to comment.Janssen said its actions in the marketing and promotion of opioids were “appropriate and responsible.”“The labels for our prescription opioid pain medicines provide information about their risks and benefits, and the allegations made against our company are baseless and unsubstantiated. In fact, our medications have some of the lowest rates of abuse among this class of medications,” it said in a statement.Shoppers and Loblaw also did not immediately respond to requests for comment.Purdue encouraged the long-term use of opioids for chronic conditions such as back pain, migraines and arthritis in order to expand its market and profits, the B.C. government alleges, and promoted a narrative that pain was under-treated and should be made a higher priority by doctors.A 1996 Purdue news release on OxyContin stated that “fear of addiction is greatly exaggerated” and “there is very little risk of addiction,” the lawsuit says.Despite medical practitioners raising alarm bells later in the 1990s and 2000s, pharmaceutical companies spent hundreds of millions to persuade doctors that risk of addiction to opioids was very low, the government alleges.In 2016, Purdue gave Canadian doctors more than $2 million as part of marketing efforts, the lawsuit alleges. The province also asserts that false claims were distributed in medical journals.The lawsuit highlights a 2007 guilty plea by Purdue in the U.S. admitting to misleading marketing. The company paid US$600 million in criminal and civil settlements, the lawsuit says, and an agreed statement of facts says Purdue employees intended to defraud or mislead when they marketed OxyContin as less addictive than other pain drugs.As for distributors, including Shoppers and Loblaw, the lawsuit alleges they circulated large amounts of opioids to pharmacies, hospitals and other dispensaries and “intensified the crisis of opioid abuse, addiction and death in Canada.”Attorney General David Eby said the lawsuit is based on the province’s litigation against tobacco companies, which has been underway for more than 15 years.“While money can never address the human toll of this tragedy, it is my responsibility as attorney general to take action where we believe corporations or individuals have acted to harm the people of B.C.,” he said.Last month, New Brunswick said it was considering launching or joining a lawsuit aimed at recovering health-care costs from the growing opioid crisis.In March, a Saskatchewan judge rejected a $20-million national settlement against Purdue, saying it was inadequate. That case was filed by individuals rather than by a government.Health Canada said in April it has closely noted the outcome of U.S. legal proceedings against Purdue. The department said action would be taken if it determines an advertisement poses a significant safety concern or contravenes its regulations.Purdue said in a statement at the time that it markets its products in accordance with the rules.“Canadians are facing a complex public health issue in which all stakeholders, including the pharmaceutical industry, have a role to play to provide practical and sustainable solutions,” the statement said.In the U.S., drugmakers are facing hundreds of lawsuits from governments alleging the companies played a role in sparking opioid addiction and an overdose crisis that killed 42,000 Americans in 2016.Companies in this story: (TSX:L) (TSX:SC)— Follow @ellekane on Twitter.last_img read more

North American stock slide lower loonie trades down against US dollar

first_imgTORONTO – Canada’s main stock index hit a six-month low Thursday while U.S. stock markets suffered another selloff day as investors are pricing in political and trade uncertainties they’ve long overlooked.The result is they have now woken up to issues that have existed for the last six to 12 months, says Kash Pashootan, CEO and chief investment officer at First Avenue Investment Counsel Inc.“The longer they shrug them off the more of a price we have to pay at some point,” he said in an interview.“When you’re trying to price in uncertainties that have existed for six, 12, 18 months over four or five trading sessions, of course you’re going to feel that in the markets.”The S&P/TSX composite index closed down 200.27 points to 15,317.13, the lowest level since April with 389 million shares traded.The 1.3 per cent selloff came a day after the TSX shed more than 330 points in the largest one-day decline in more than three years.Energy posted the largest decrease, falling 3.37 per cent in a pullback from steady gains. The November crude contract was down US$2.20 at US$70.97 per barrel.Gold stocks rose nearly eight per cent as the price of gold hit its highest level since August as investors sought a hedge against uncertainty. The December gold contract was up US$34.20 at US$1,227.60 an ounce.In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 545.91 points to 25,052.83 after dropping more than 800 points on Wednesday. All companies were in the red for a second-straight day. The S&P 500 index was down 57.31 points to 2,728.37, while the Nasdaq composite was down 92.99 points at 7,329.06Pashootan says the hemorrhage likely hasn’t ended.“I would not be surprised if we saw a 10 to 15 per cent correction in the market,” he said, noting that the S&P 500 had gone 74 consecutive days without any plus or minus move above one per cent.Even sophisticated and experienced investors have become accustomed over the last decade to a pretty easy ride in equities, he said.The Canadian dollar traded at an average of 76.70 cents US compared with an average of 76.97 cents US on Wednesday.The November natural gas contract was down 6.2 cents at US$3.22 per mmBTU.The December gold contract was up US$34.20 at US$1,227.60 an ounce and the December copper contract was up 2.25 cents at US$2.80 a pound.last_img read more

Lawyers protest detention of Kelly Ghosns coaccused

first_imgTOKYO — Lawyers for Greg Kelly, the executive arrested last month with Nissan’s former chairman Carlos Ghosn on suspicion of underreporting Ghosn’s pay, are protesting his prolonged stay in Japanese detention.The Tokyo District Court says it received the protest Wednesday. Lawyers often file such protests in Japan, where suspects get detained for weeks, sometimes months, before they face trial. Such protests tend to be routinely rejected.A similar protest filed by Ghosn’s lawyers was rejected Tuesday.A Tokyo court decided to detain Ghosn and Kelly through Dec. 20, although it could be longer.Ghosn, Kelly and Nissan Motor Co. as a legal entity were charged Monday with violating financial laws by underreporting Ghosn’s pay by about 5 billion yen ($44 million) in 2011-2015.The Associated Presslast_img read more

Fourth Annual Pride Walk June 1st 2019

first_imgThere will be pizza and cupcakes as well as a bubble station.Trans Care BC will have an information booth set up as they aim to enhance the coordination of trans health services and supports across the province, bringing gender-affirming care closer to home wherever possible.As well as a booth by Peace Area Trans*Two Spirited Support (PATTS)This years theme, Stronger Together remembers Stonewall, a series of spontaneous, violent demonstrations in 1969 by members of the gay community against a police raid named after Stonewall Inn, a popular gay club in Greenwich Village. Stonewall signifies a turning point for the Gay Liberation Movement in the United States. As its participants shaped a new cultural awareness of a population that was largely ostracized. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Fourth Annual Pride Walk is taking place on June 1st, 2019.The Fort St. John Pride Parade and Festival starts at 2 pm at the WI Centennial Park near CM Finch School, travelling down 100th and reaching the destination at the bowl in Centennial Park next to the Museum.This is a family-friendly event, with Road Worn headlining the Pride Festival, with speeches made by members of City Council as well as entertainment by local performers, a dance troop and more.last_img read more

Liverpool battle back to beat Burnley 42

first_imgLiverpool: Jurgen Klopp warned title rivals Manchester City that Liverpool will not give up their title bid quietly after a 4-2 victory over Burnley cut Pep Guardiola’s lead at the top of the Premier League to a single point. Liverpool responded impressively to City’s win against Watford on Saturday, rallying strongly after falling behind to a controversial opening goal from Burnley, with two goals each from Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane. And the German manager, whose side visit Bayern Munich in their Champions League last-16 second leg tie on Wednesday, insisted that the performance demonstrated his team’s ability to handle the pressure. “The message from today is that nobody gets rid of us,” said Klopp. “We had the perfect mixture of fighting the opponent and playing football. “All we have to do is make sure that we stay in this really interesting competition on top of the table. We have no problem with confidence, we’re in a good moment.” The victory was also a triumph for Adam Lallana, the England midfielder whose inclusion in the starting line-up was not universally popular among Liverpool supporters but who turned in a man-of-the-match display. Lallana changed the momentum of the game just before the half-hour, charging down a poor clearance from Phil Bardsley and seeing Mohamed Salah tackled by Charlie Taylor before the ball broke kindly to Mane, who curled in from 15 yards. “It is not only Adam but it was clear, if he can play like he trained, then he will help us a lot and that is exactly how it happened,” said Klopp. “He is always good on the ball but he is an aggressive boy. The counter press is a game-changer. It didn’t look really promising until he jumped in so well done, really pleased for him.” It was a strong response from Liverpool after they fell behind against Sean Dyche’s struggling team in the sixth minute. Defender Joel Matip needlessly conceded a corner which Ashley Westwood curled directly into the Liverpool goal with keeper Alisson Becker protesting furiously that he had been impeded, earning a booking for sprinting 40 yards to remonstrate with referee Andre Marriner. “The early goal we conceded, usually it would have been disallowed, if the ref had a view,” said Klopp. “I saw the first minute it is a foul, you cannot treat the goalie like this. The good thing is it is early, we had time to turn it around.” This was a real test of Liverpool’s mental fortitude after a run that had seen them draw five of their previous seven games in the league and Champions League but a test they passed impressively. They trailed for just 13 minutes, equalising with a flowing move started when Salah and Georginio Wijnaldum exchanged passes, the former crossed and, after Tom Heaton and James Tarkowski missed the ball, Firmino was able to tap into an open net. After taking a 2-1 lead into the interval, courtesy of Mane’s goal, Liverpool effectively killed off the game midway through the second half. Salah broke clear and was poised to shoot when Taylor made a superb tackle which, unfortunately for the visitors, left the loose ball sitting up nicely for Firmino to drive it into an open goal. There was late anxiety after Johann Berg Gudmundsson made it 3-2 with an injury-time consolation after a knock-down in the area from Burnley substitute Peter Crouch. But with virtually the last kick of the game, in the 93rd minute, Mane chased a long Daniel Sturridge through ball, rounded Heaton and completed the victory, kicking into the open goal.last_img read more

2019 Lok Sabha elections Party representatives meet EC officials

first_imgKolkata: Representatives from various political parties on Monday met senior officials of the Election Commission of India (ECI) in the state raising various issues related to the process of conducting the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections.Senior Trinamool Congress leaders including Partha Chatterjee and Subrata Bakshi brought to the notice of the Chief Electoral Officer a number of concerns. They have demanded that the ECI must inform them about the total number of Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trails (VVPATs) which will be used during the seven-phase elections in the state. Also Read – Centuries-old Durga Pujas continue to be hit among revellersThe TMC leaders also wanted to know from the ECI officials as to in what type of media publications the candidates should publish their affidavits. It was not clearly mentioned in the ECI notification if a candidate has to publish his/her affidavit in national or regional newspapers. It was said that the candidates must publish the affidavits containing criminal antecedents, assets, liabilities, dependents, educational qualifications of candidates and the like in both print and electronic media. In the notification, it has been made mandatory that the candidates must publish their details in the media. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaChatterjee told reporters: “In some instances, there is a gap of 14 to 20 days and polling is being held in just two constituencies. Why has this happened? We have raised the issue with the EC officials.” In pursuance of a judgment of the Supreme Court, the ECI has made it mandatory for all candidates contesting the Lok Sabha elections to file an affidavit along with the nomination paper and the candidates are required to fill up all the columns. If any column in the affidavit is left blank, the Returning Officer will issue a notice to the candidate to submit a fresh one, duly filling up all columns. After meeting the election officials at the CEO office, Partha Chatterjee said that the polls will be conducted in seven phases. There are some religious rituals of a particular community in May as a result of which voters belonging to that community may face problems. He also added that his party has nothing to worry about as people in the state have witnessed the development works carried out by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her set of ministers. The number of total days allotted for the campaign by the candidates contesting the elections in various phases is different from one phase to another, Chatterjee pointed out. All the Opposition parties in the state — Congress, BJP and CPI-M leaders who met the ECI officials stated that the hoardings and posters carrying the photographs of TMC leaders at various places have not been removed yet. They also urged the ECI officials to ensure that all voters can safely reach their polling stations without any fear. The ECI officials assured them that all their demands would be looked into.last_img read more

Man stabbed to death

first_imgNEW DELHI: A 19-year-old man was stabbed to death by two unidentified persons in Rohini’s Sector-3 area, police said Saturday. The deceased was identified as Vardaan, a resident of Vijay Vihar area, they said.According to a senior police officer, the incident occurred at around 10.30 pm on Friday when Vardaan, along with his friend Vinay, went to Rohini Sector-3 to meet his friend. On the instance of Vinay, the eyewitness, a case under Indian Penal Code Section 302 (murder) was registered at Rohini South police station, police said. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderVinay stated that when he, along with Vardaan, was standing outside the house of the latter’s friend in the Sector-3, two unidentified bike-borne men accosted them and started thrashing Vardaan, police said. Later, they attacked Vardaan multiple times with a knife and when Vinay tried to resist them, they threw a stone at his head and fled the spot, they said. Vardaan was rushed to Baba Sahib Ambedkar Hospital where he was declared brought dead, the officer said.last_img read more

Degree of competence

first_imgHow educated does a leader have to be and what is the consequence of lack of intellectual exposure? Congress is making fun of the fact that Smriti Irani did not go to college. She joined a correspondence course but did not finish it, which probably means she had no interest in furthering her education. Irani is a smart and clever individual and her lack of formal education does not appear to have hindered her progress, though one can judge her quality only from her policy interventions which not many of us have any idea about. There is no shame in not having gone to college, but Irani got into trouble because she had made some claims about her education (having gone to Yale University) which were misleading if not outright false. Also Read – A special kind of bondIt should be said that Congress’s dynasty is itself not particularly qualified in the educational sense. Rajiv Gandhi went to England to study at Cambridge but he failed his exams and did not get a degree. His brother Sanjay did not even pass out of high school. He left school to take up a course in automobile repairs. It is shocking that such a person was so powerful and was allowed a big say in policy by his mother. Sanjay’s wife Maneka married him when she was 18 and therefore does not have a proper education. Her Lok Sabha qualification says she only went to school. Sonia Gandhi did not go to college either. Her studies ended at the age of 18, and she also married early. Indira Gandhi did not accomplish a degree either. Also Read – Insider threat managementRahul Gandhi is called Pappu by his detractors but he seems to be academically bright. He has a Masters in Philosophy in development economics from Trinity College, Cambridge. This is the same place where Nehru also studied. It may interest readers to know that Nehru passed with a third class and was not a good student. Rahul is the most educated individual in Gandhi family’s history. The most famous British Prime Minister Winston Churchill did not go to college and did not have a formal education. This is remarkable because he was a historian and a novelist and won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1953. Another British Prime Minister who left school at 16 and did not go to college was John Major, whom older readers will remember as Margaret Thatcher’s successor. A total of 11 British PMs have not been to college. Narendra Modi left his house and his wife at the age of 17 and did not go to college. He did a correspondence course, though there is some controversy over the authenticity of the documents he has produced. Despite his lack of formal education, we can observe that he is a good politician. However, I think he has one crucial flaw. He does not engage deeply with policy material like Manmohan or Obama or someone intellectual might. In one of his interviews, Modi has himself described how he works. He says: “Three or four days after I became chief minister of Gujarat, the Chief Secretary (CS) came to me. He brought a heap of files this tall (gesturing about three feet high). They must have weighed 15 or 20 kilos. The peon left them on my table. The CS sat and said to me: ‘This is the file for Narmada’ — I can remember Narmada but there were three other files also. The CS said: ‘These are on Gujarat’s vital and sensitive issues. Take the time out to read them. You may need to speak on, and take a position on, at any time and address all these issues.’ ‘I kept looking up and down the height of the stack three or four times. I said to him: ‘You leave these here and we shall meet in a few days.’ I did not even open these files. They stayed where they were. A voice came to me that I could not work through academics study (sic). I can’t do that. That voice came from within. I said to the three officers who were working with me that ‘the CS has given these to me. I will not be able to read so much. First, you people make me understand what masala (sic) the files contain. If I begin reading all this material, there’s no end to it. It is not in my nature (prakruti) to read files… Three or four days later the CS returned. I said to him: Tell me what the important things are in these files. He did so and I said: This much is sufficient for me, you can take the files back. After that, I have never had to be briefed on these issues, and it’s been 13 years since.’ ‘I had such ability that I was able to grasp the granularity of the issues. Such things left an impact on the officers. I don’t argue. I am a good listener. Don’t go by my reputation outside: I listen a lot. I can say today that if in my development reading played a 30 per cent role then listening had a 70 per cent role. What I hear, I analyse, and classify the ‘maal’ (sic) in different boxes in my mind. This takes me no time and when needed, I can retrieve it. This extra method (vidha) I have been able to develop… Even today if my officers show me some paper, I say: Tell me what’s in it in two minutes. For me, two minutes is sufficient for a 10-page document. This skill is something I have developed.'”Unfortunately, this is not appropriate for running a large and complex nation. One hopes that in his second term, Modi spends more time reading serious material even if it bores him or is against his nature. (The author is head of Amnesty International India’s operations. The views expressed are strictly personal)last_img read more

Pak India officials hold technical meeting on Kartarpur corridor

first_imgLahore: Pakistan and India on Tuesday held a technical meeting to discuss the modalities for the corridor linking Gurudwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur to Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Gurdaspur district in Punjab.The technical experts and foreign office officials from both sides participated in the talks held at Zero Point (Kartarpur), according to Geo News. They reportedly discussed installation of a border fence and road design. An official of the Pakistan Rangers told PTI that the meeting of both sides took place at the Kartarpur Zero Point to the PTI but said any statement will be issued either by Pakistan’s Foreign Office or the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the media wing of the Pakistan military. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’In a major initiative last November, both India and Pakistan agreed to set up the Kartarpur Corridor to link the historic Gurdwara Darbar Sahib — the final resting place of Sikh faith’s founder Guru Nanak Dev — to Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur. Kartarpur Sahib is located in Pakistan’s Narowal district across the river Ravi, about four kilometres from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine. Earlier, India postponed the Kartarpur Corridor meeting between the two countries at the Wagah border scheduled for April 2. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KIndia and Pakistan on March 19 held a meeting of technical experts on the Kartarpur corridor during which its alignment, coordinates, and other engineering aspects of the proposed crossing points were discussed. The technical meeting at the level of experts, including engineers and surveyors, was held at “proposed zero points” in the follow up to the decision reached on the March 14 meeting. Later, the Pakistani Cabinet constituted a 10-member Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (PSGPC) to facilitate Sikh pilgrims after opening of the Kartarpur corridor. India voiced concerns over the presence of several Khalistani separatists in the committee on the Kartarpur corridor and said it will wait for a response from Islamabad on the issue and will not go ahead with a previously agreed meeting on the corridor on April 2 in Wagah on the Pakistani side. During the previous meeting, both sides jointly surveyed the coordinates of the Zero Point and discussed the technical details, including finished road level, high flood level etc. Pakistan will build the corridor from the Indian border to the Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Kartarpur while the other part from Dera Baba Nanak in Indian Punjab’s Gurdaspur district up to the border will be constructed by India. In Pakistan, the groundbreaking ceremony of the corridor was performed on November 28 last year by Prime Minister Imran Khan. Fifty per cent of the four-kilometre stretch being built by Pakistan has been completed while the stretch between the Zero Line to Baba Nanak’s shrine is being built by India. PTIlast_img read more