Month: October 2019

Cant file medical reports as Antigua doctor refused to treat me ChoksiCant file medical reports as Antigua doctor refused to treat me Choksi

first_imgMumbai: Diamantaire and PNB scam accused Mehul Choksi told the Bombay High Court on Monday that he cannot submit his medical reports to civic-run JJ hospital here, as directed earlier, because his doctor in Antigua has refused to treat him “due to some reason”.In a plea, Choksi had challenged the proceedings initiated against him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) before a lower court to declare him a fugitive economic offender in the scam. In June this year, the high court directed Choksi to submit his latest medical reports along with a letter from his doctor to a team of doctors at the J J hospital after he claimed in another petition that he was unable to travel back to India due to his persistent ill health. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The high court had said the J J hospital doctors would go through Choksi’s medical papers and submit their report on whether he was medically fit to return. When this petition came up for hearing on Monday before a division bench headed by Justice I A Mahanty, Choksi’s lawyer Vijay Aggarwal told the high court that they could not submit the medical reports. “The doctor who was treating Choksi has refused to treat him due to some reason which we are submitting in a sealed report,” Aggarwal said. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KAt this, ED’s advocate Hiten Venegaonkar requested the high court to dismiss Choksi’s plea. “The prosecution’s plea seeking for Choksi to be declared as a fugitive economic offender is getting delayed because of these petitions filed in the high court,” said Venegaonkar. After hearing brief arguments, the high court said Choksi’s main ground for not returning to India to face prosecution is that he is medically unfit to travel. “But when you (Choksi) are not giving documents to support this claim then you withdraw this petition,” said Justice Mahanty. Aggarwal agreed and withdrew the petition. The ED, which moved a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act court here to get Choksi declared a fugitive economic offender, has accused the diamantaire of fleeing the country to avoid arrest. Choksi and his nephew Nirav Modi, who is currently in a London jail, are wanted by the ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation for allegedly defrauding the Punjab National Bank (PNB) to the tune of Rs 13,400 crore. In June, Choksi claimed in a petition filed in the high court that he had left India for medical treatment and not to avoid prosecution in the case.last_img read more

2yrold raped in Gurugram2yrold raped in Gurugram

first_imgGurugram: In a single day two cases were registered in the city that again highlighted how vulnerable the children in the city are. In the first case, a two-year-old was raped by a drunkard. The police have arrested a 23-year-old man from Bihar on the charge of raping a two-year-old girl in a slum near Sector 84 here on Tuesday night when the child was alone at home. An FIR was lodged under the POCSO Act. In another incident, a 43-year-old man arrested for allegedly molesting his 14-year-old daughter when she was sleeping in her house in Badshahpur. According to the police, the relationship between the teen’s parents has been strained for some time. They allegedly live separately in the same house. Police spokesperson Subhash Boken said, “The girl used to be with her mother on some days and with her father on other days.”last_img read more

Blame everyone but BJPs handling of economy Cong on FMs OlaUber remarksBlame everyone but BJPs handling of economy Cong on FMs OlaUber remarks

first_imgNEW DELHI: The Congress on Wednesday took a jibe at finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman for her remarks that the automobile sector slowdown was due to factors like change in mindset of millennials, with party leader Abhishek Singhvi saying blame everyone but the BJP’s handling of the economy. Sitharaman on Tuesday had said the slowdown in the automobile sector was due to many factors like the change in mindset of millennials, who now prefer taxi aggregators like Ola and Uber instead of committing for monthly installments to own a car. Reacting to her remarks, Singhvi tweeted: “Yes..that’s great. Blame the voters..blame everyone but BJP’s handling of the economy Mrs Finance Minister.” Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The Congress, in a tweet from its official Twitter handle, also took a dig at Sitharaman for her remarks. “So the decline in bus and truck sales is also because millennials have stopped buying them as much as they used to. Isn’t that right FM Smt. @nsitharaman?” the party said. In a tweet on Wednesday, Singhvi also questioned how the economy will cross 5 trillion dollars in view of the prevailing circumstances. “Modi ji’s Twitter followers have crossed 50 million. Economy will cross 5 trillion (dollars), but how? Youths are not getting jobs, will you hold opposition responsible for this too. Uber, Ola have ruined everything,” he said. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&K”Whatever good has happened, has been done by us (Modinomics). Whatever bad has happened, has been done by others (Nirmalanomics). Then, why have people elected you? (Publiconomics),” he said in another tweet. The Congress, in a tweet, also attacked the government over a media report claiming that crores of stocks in investor wealth has been wiped off in the first 100 days of the Modi government’s second term. “Despite their promise of protecting wealth creators, the government’s disastrous policies have wiped away Rs 12.5 lakh crore of investor wealth in the last 100 days. Unlike the FM’s excuses, these are the real reasons for it: Demonetisation, GST, Tax Terrorism,” the party said.last_img read more

Final remains of murdered aboriginal woman returned to family after eight yearsFinal remains of murdered aboriginal woman returned to family after eight years

first_imgHALIFAX – The final remains of a murdered Mi’kmaq woman have been returned to her family, eight years after Tanya Brooks’ body was found outside a Halifax school.Brooks’ sister Vanessa Brooks, 43, said police had withheld her brain as part of the ongoing investigation into the still-unsolved murder.She said it was returned to the family Wednesday, and a smudging ceremony was conducted with investigators and members of victim services and the medical examiner’s office.“I don’t think there’s any way that I can possibly articulate just how monumental this is … to our family,” she said at Halifax police headquarters on Thursday, eight years to the day after her older sister’s body was discovered nearby.Reading from a statement on behalf of her family, Brooks said it was important that her sister be buried “whole,” but she stressed that they also did not want the remains returned if it was going to jeopardize the investigation.“In Mi’kmaq culture, in order for our spirits to rest, our whole body needs to be as one,” she said, choking back tears and clutching a feather in her right hand.“With yesterday’s events, Tanya is whole again, which was our mother’s last wish before her death in September 2015. On behalf of our mother, it’s an honour to have Tanya complete so that she can return home (to) be laid to rest and our family can begin to heal.”Investigators did not say why Tanya Brooks’ brain was withheld for eight years.The 36-year-old woman was found in a trench along the side of St. Pat’s Alexandra Elementary School on May 11, 2009.Police say she was known in the area and they were able to trace her movements until about 9 p.m. the night before, when she left police headquarters on Gottingen Street, near the school.Investigators say they believe Brooks knew her assailant and that there are witnesses who have not yet come forward.Vanessa Brooks pleaded for those witnesses to “break your silence.”“We appeal to them to do the right thing. Please,” she said, pausing to compose herself. “We hope that laying Tanya to rest in the weeks ahead might also be the motivation needed to give someone the courage to come forward to the police.”Brooks said her sister will be buried with her mother. She was a mother, daughter, sister, aunt and friend, her sister added.“She was artistic. She had a very beautiful gift of drawing that her son has inherited,” said Brooks, looking towards her sister’s 15-year-old son, Qualin Brooks.“She had the gift of poetry. She was kind. She would give the shirt off her back if she felt you needed it more than she did.”Brooks also praised investigators and victim services for their work.“Our family is proof that a strong, respectful relationship can exist between the family of a murdered indigenous woman, the police and other key players in an investigation into your loved one’s murder or missing person case,” she said.Follow (at)AlyThomson on Twitter.last_img read more

More than 300 buildings destroyed by persistent wildfires across BCMore than 300 buildings destroyed by persistent wildfires across BC

first_imgKAMLOOPS, B.C. – Wildfires continue to burn across British Columbia and officials say flames have now destroyed more than 300 buildings.Robert Turner with Emergency Management BC says 71 of the buildings were homes, 116 were outbuildings like sheds, three were commercial buildings and 115 have yet to be identified.He says the Cariboo Regional District, the Thompson-Nicola Regional District and the Ashcroft Indian Band have been the hardest hit, but no critical infrastructure has been lost.More than 840 fires have charred about 4,260 square kilometres in B.C. since April 1, and Kevin Skrepnek with the BC Wildfire Service says hot, dry weather is expected to increase fire activity in the coming days.He says smoke from the fires is hanging over several communities, creating visibility and safety issues for aircraft that are fighting and detecting the fires.About 3,700 people are currently battling the flames and 108 fire personnel from Mexico are coming to join them later this week.last_img read more

New data show how close jets came to crashing at SF airportNew data show how close jets came to crashing at SF airport

first_imgNewly released data and photos show how shockingly low an Air Canada jet was when it pulled up to avoid crashing into planes waiting on a San Francisco International Airport taxiway last month.The Air Canada pilots mistook the taxiway for the runway next to it and flew their jet to just 59 feet (18 metres) above ground before pulling up to attempt another landing, according to National Transportation Safety Board information released Wednesday.That’s barely taller than the four planes that were on the taxiway when the incident occurred late at night on July 7.Pilots in a United Airlines plane alerted air traffic controllers about the off-course jet, while the crew of a Philippine Airlines jet behind it switched on their plane’s landing lights in an apparent last-ditch danger signal to Air Canada.NTSB investigators said they have not determined probable cause for the incident that came within a few feet of becoming one of the worst disasters in aviation history.“It was close, much too close,” said John Cox, a safety consultant and retired airline pilot.The investigators said that as the Air Canada jet approached the taxiway just before midnight after a flight from Toronto, it was so far off course that it did not appear on a radar system used to prevent runway collisions.Those systems were not designed to spot planes that are lined up to land on a taxiway — a rare occurrence, especially for airline pilots. But the Federal Aviation Administration is working on modifications so they can, agency spokesman Ian Gregor said.Both pilots of the Air Canada Airbus A320 jet were very experienced. The captain, who was flying the plane, had more than 20,000 hours of flying time, and the co-pilot had about 10,000 hours.The pilots told investigators “that they did not recall seeing aircraft on taxiway but that something did not look right to them,” the NTSB said.Investigators could not hear what the Air Canada captain and co-pilot said to each other during the aborted landing because their conversation was recorded over when the plane made other flights, starting with a San Francisco-to-Montreal trip the next morning. Recorders are required to capture only the last two hours of a plane’s flying time.Peter Fitzpatrick, a spokesman for Air Canada, declined to comment, citing the ongoing investigation.___David Koenig can be reached at read more

Activist charged with assaulting mayor in historic towns sewage feudActivist charged with assaulting mayor in historic towns sewage feud

first_imgLUNENBURG, N.S. – Standing on the bow of his fishing boat, Bill Flower only has to look down to see a thick brown sludge belch out of a municipal wastewater pipe and into one of Canada’s most iconic harbours.The fetid material burbles across the rocks under one of Lunenburg’s busiest wharfs and flows into the sea, coating boats, their ropes and most anything that comes in contact with it in a sticky film.For Flower, who also runs a tour boat company and often has his hands covered in the slime, the fact that sewage flows freely into the harbour of a picturesque town deemed a UNESCO world heritage site and home to Canada’s most famous sailing ship, the Bluenose II, is a maddening reality he’s vowed to change.“It’s dangerous and bad for the environment and I’m handling it everyday — it’s disgusting,” he said in an interview. “We’ve had improperly treated sewage pumping underneath that wharf for 15 years and it’s gotten worse and worse as the volume of people increase, especially in the summertime when it stinks like hell.”Flower has been a vocal critic of the town’s sewage treatment plant and the location of the outfall, saying the pipe should have been placed closer to the mouth of the harbour and away from the busy waterfront that features a fisheries museum and other tourist spots.He cites recent test results posted on the town website that show the presence of elevated levels of fecal bacteria.He says that over the years he has repeatedly urged Lunenburg Mayor Rachel Bailey to do something about the pipe and the sewage treatment facility, which he argues is not adequate to handle the town’s load, particularly when there are heavy rains. As a result, he says raw sewage likely pours into the harbour at times.People in the town also complain about a strong odour coming from the plant, which Ottawa has pledged to address with a promised $1.1-million biofilter announced last month.But Flower says his appeals have not brought about any change in the town, about an hour and a half south of Halifax.The long-simmering feud took a strange turn in recent weeks when Flower was charged with assaulting the mayor on Aug. 14 by allegedly smearing the foul sludge on her ankle following a confrontation between the two.Flower said the mayor approached him on the wharf as he was preparing to head out on the water, and they had a heated exchange over his public comments on the sewage. He said she returned the following day and displayed her ankle, saying it was infected from the material.Flower wouldn’t comment when asked if he touched Bailey. Court documents listing the charge indicate Flower is not to have any contact with Bailey.Bailey issued a statement Wednesday saying that Flower’s account of what allegedly happened differs from her statement to police, but refused to offer any other details.Bailey only said she stopped at the Inshore Fisherman’s Wharf, where Flower ties up, on her way home from a morning run and began a conversation with a person she does not name.“During the course of what began there as a discussion, another person participating in the exchange put his hands on me in a manner that is unacceptable. I subsequently reported the incident to the RCMP,” her statement reads.“Details of the incident described in media reports do not reconcile with the statement I made to the police which will be a part of the criminal proceedings.”The mayor, as well as staff responsible for the wastewater treatment plant, did not respond to repeated requests for comment.The municipality posted test results from five sites around the harbour, which show levels of enterococci — a fecal bacteria — that far exceed Health Canada’s guideline of 70 colonies per 100 millilitres of water.On Sept. 6, a test at the Fisherman’s Wharf registered 3,873 colonies per 100 millilitres of water.“Those levels are definitely higher than the acceptable level … by today’s standards it’s bad,” said Bruce Hatcher, chair of Marine Ecosystem Research at Cape Breton University.“This is a UNESCO heritage site and the world is watching and we really need to be seen to be taking care of these environments.”— By Alison Auld in Halifaxlast_img read more

Nova Scotia mother with mild intellectual disability denied custody of sonNova Scotia mother with mild intellectual disability denied custody of son

first_imgSYDNEY, N.S. – A mother with a mild intellectual disability has lost custody of her 18-month-old son after a Nova Scotia judge found she does not have the capacity to parent the child.Nova Scotia’s Community Services Department has been caring for the boy since shortly after his birth, and earlier this year sought a permanent care order because of protection concerns.The 40-year-old mother opposed the order, arguing that she sincerely loves her son and that her mild intellectual disability is not a risk to his safety.In a written decision, Justice Theresa Forgeron of the Nova Scotia Supreme Court in Sydney found the child would be at a “substantial risk of harm” in his mother’s care because she cannot adequately supervise and protect him.Forgeron said a parental capacity assessment found the mother’s mild intellectual disability impairs her parenting abilities, and although she would meet her son’s basic needs, she would have difficulty solving the “novel” problems that will inevitably arise as the child matures.“I infer that the mother’s limitations with cognitive functioning will continually cause parenting deficits that will place the son at a substantial risk of physical harm,” the Oct. 23 written decision said.The decision said the woman lacked insight, noting the child’s father has an extensive child protection history involving substance abuse and violence and that the mother had previously refused to dissociate with him.“The mother does not truly appreciate the risks associated with a dysfunctional and abusive relationship. The mother’s recent vow to sever all ties with the son’s father rings hollow,” it said, adding that the woman also has a 22-year-old son with ongoing addiction issues and a 15-year-old daughter who lives with her father.Krista Carr, executive vice-president of the Canadian Association for Community Living, said she could not comment on the case specifically, but said the system has traditionally discriminated against people with intellectual disabilities.“The automatic assumption of the system is that they couldn’t possibly be an appropriate parent. People with an intellectual disability are human beings, the same as everyone else, and they have the right to be parents,” said Carr in an interview.Ruth Strubank, executive director of the Nova Scotia Association for Community Living, said more supports are needed for parents with intellectual disabilities — such as home visits with health care workers — rather than discounting them as parents altogether.“That requires a level (of) education and training for social workers and others,” said Strubank.Carr agreed, saying that supports are provided to parents with issues such as addiction so that children can stay in the home, but people with intellectual disabilities are often not helped in the same way.“It’s about recognizing the individual’s right to be a parent and providing the support that’s necessary to ensure that they get the support they need to be a good parent. There’s no evidence to prove that a person with an intellectual disability can’t be a parent.”The judge noted the mother allowed a young homeless person that she had just met to stay overnight in her home, and later realized that person was stealing. Forgeron said the mother does not appreciate the risks associated with her older son’s addiction issues, and “makes poor choices in friends.”“The mother is a naive and vulnerable person … Her friendships are often conflictual and at times abusive,” it said, noting she told a doctor she was seriously assaulted once by two friends.It also said the woman does not have the capacity to parent on her own, and would require a supportive network to safely parent the child, which she does not have. It said the mother argued the maternal grandmother would help care for the child, but the court said the 78-year-old woman could not offer the required support.“The maternal grandmother does not appreciate the extent of the mother’s challenges, often brushing off concerns that were raised by counsel. (She) stated that she would be there to babysit and occasionally direct, but would otherwise allow the mother to parent the son,” it said.“Second, the maternal grandmother has her own limitations arising from age and health concerns.”Forgeron also denied the woman ongoing visits, saying that “access would impede adoption and permanency planning.”— By Aly Thomson in Halifax.last_img read more

Six stories in the news for today Nov 20Six stories in the news for today Nov 20

first_imgSix stories in the news for Monday, Nov. 20———CANADIANS TOLD TO BRACE FOR ‘CLASSIC’ WINTEROne of Canada’s high profile weather forecasters is warning Canadians to brace for a whole lot of snow this winter. Chris Scott, The Weather Network’s chief meteorologist, says the message from his forecast team is “‘buckle up’ because it looks like a stormy winter.” The forecast says British Columbia, the Prairies, Quebec, Ontario and the Maritimes can all expect above normal levels of precipitation. But the long-range forecast also calls sustained periods of milder temperatures.———FORMER WATCHDOG WARNS FEDS ON HOUSING CASHParliament’s first budget watchdog is warning the federal government to be careful how it spends billions in new housing money over the next decade to ensure it actually makes a lasting impact. In an analysis published today, former parliamentary budget officer Kevin Page says Ottawa currently doesn’t tie homelessness and housing funding to any outcomes, meaning the money flows whether the results are good or bad.———NEBRASKA CASTS VOTE ON KEYSTONE XL PIPELINE TODAYFive commissioners in Nebraska are set to vote today on the fate of TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline, potentially clearing the last major regulatory hurdle of a project once thought dead. The Nebraska Public Service Commission will vote on whether the project, which would transport 830,000 barrels of oil a day from Alberta to U.S. markets, serves the public interest. The vote comes as TransCanada continues to clean up a 5,000 barrel oil spill from it’s pipeline in nearby South Dakota.———CEREMONIES TO MARK ANNIVERSARY OF MONTREAL PROTOCOLEnvironment Minister Catherine McKenna and former prime minister Brian Mulroney will be in Montreal today to mark the 30th anniversary of a landmark treaty to protect the earth’s ozone layer. The Montreal Protocol was an international agreement signed in the city on Sept. 16, 1987 to phase out the use of chemicals being blamed for destroying the ozone layer.———COLLEGE FACULTY RETURN TO WORK AFTER STRIKECollege faculty in Ontario head back to their schools today, after a five-week strike was ended over the weekend with back-to-work legislation. The 12,000 professors, instructors, counsellors and librarians who’d been on strike since Oct. 15 will return to work today to prepare for students’ return on Tuesday. Colleges are extending their semesters so students don’t lose their terms, but student advocates say trying to condense five missed weeks into roughly two extra ones will be very stressful.———NDP TURNS TO UNUSED RULE TO KEEP BILL ALIVEIn a show of backbencher strength, NDP MP Sheila Malcolmson could become the first MP in history to force her colleagues in the House of Commons into a secret ballot to save a piece of legislation. Malcolmson plans to appeal directly to House of Commons Speaker Geoff Regan today hoping he’ll let her private members’ bill to establish a national strategy on abandoned vessels proceed to debate.———ALSO IN THE NEWS TODAY:— National inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous girls and women to hold hearings in Saskatoon.— Alberta Premier Rachel Notley is in Toronto to talk about the importance of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion as part of a national speaking tour.— Alberta’s child advocate to release a report on the experiences of LGBTQ youth in the child welfare and justice systems.— The fifth round of talks on the North American Free Trade Agreement. Through to Nov. 21.— The European Union Delegation to Canada hosts the 2017 Common Security and Defence Policy Symposium in Ottawa.— Scotiabank Giller Prize to be awarded in Toronto.———last_img read more

Child rep collects documents after sisters deaths no decision on investigationChild rep collects documents after sisters deaths no decision on investigation

first_imgVANCOUVER – British Columbia’s child and youth representative says his office has begun to collect information about two young sisters whose bodies were found in a Victoria-area home on Christmas Day.Bernard Richard said Friday it is too early to say whether he will launch a formal investigation, but he says his office has contacted the BC Coroners Service and the provincial ministry in charge of child welfare and has started gathering documents.Richard’s office has the power to investigate when young people who have received child welfare services die or are critically injured.“Obviously this is a very concerning case,” Richard said in an interview from Cap Pele, N.B.“We’ll be taking a very close look at the circumstances surrounding the services provided to this family and whether they could have played a role in the events of Christmas Day.”The Ministry of Children and Family Development declined comment on the deaths, citing privacy reasons. But it said in an emailed statement the ministry always co-operates fully with investigations involving police or the coroner’s office.“This is a heartbreaking tragedy and our thoughts are with the family and everyone who loves them, as well as the broader community that has been shocked and saddened by this news,” the ministry said.Police discovered the bodies of the two young girls inside a home in Oak Bay on Monday evening and are investigating the incident as a double homicide.A friend of the family said the children’s mother, Sarah Cotton, notified the police that her former common-law spouse, Andrew Berry, hadn’t returned them as scheduled.A family member and friend have identified the girls as Aubrey Berry, 4, and her sister Chloe, 6.Police have said an injured man, whose identity and condition have not been disclosed, was found inside the home and taken to hospital.No charges have been laid and police have said they are not looking for any further suspects.The Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit said Wednesday the man remained in hospital and was not in police custody. No further updates on the investigation have been released by police since then.Richard said his office cannot begin interviewing witnesses or officially investigate until police and the coroner’s service have finished their investigations, which could take months.He said his own reaction has been to grieve what he describes as a heartbreaking situation.“I think the dust will settle at some point and we’ll get answers, but for now I think it could be actually damaging to the mom, who is already stricken with grief, and other family members, to be speculating too broadly without knowing the real information,” he said.Reports produced by the representative for children and youth are publicly released.The girls’ mother had concerns about their father’s parenting abilities, court documents say.In a decision released in May, a B.C. Supreme Court judge said Berry displayed poor judgment in dealing with his children, including allegations of inappropriate touching involving one of the girls in October 2015 that led to an investigation by the province’s child welfare agency.In court, Berry testified he tickled one of the girls but not inappropriately.The court decision was intended to settle custody of the children and distribution of assets after Berry and Cotton separated in September 2013.Justice Victoria Gray concluded that Berry’s “displays of poor judgment regarding the children” did not justify depriving his daughters of “significant parenting time” with him.“The father is a loving father who has much to offer his daughters,” the decision says. “The children appear to be generally happy and healthy, although suffering some stress from the breakdown of their parents’ relationship.”Erez Aloni, a law professor at the University of British Columbia, said speaking in general about how the courts approach family disputes, they are typically reluctant to intervene in every issue, despite having the authority to do so.“It’s a more complex and sensitive issue than simply collecting a debt,” Aloni said. “You want to make sure that the parties can continue to work together as parents.”The District of Oak Bay has organized a candlelight vigil Saturday evening to honour the two girls at Willows Beach. The vigil will include formal remarks and music.“We have been shaken as a community,” the municipality said in a statement posted on its website. “This event is an opportunity to come together in grief and in love to mourn the tragic loss of two of our young citizens.”— Follow @gwomand on Twitterlast_img read more

BC at odds with their premier over Trans Mountain surveyBC at odds with their premier over Trans Mountain survey

first_imgA new poll shows B.C. residents may not share the same attitudes about the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion as their premier.The Angus Reid Poll surveyed over 2,100 Canadians, half of them in B.C., and found 54 per cent of British Columbians now support the project, up six points from February.Spokesperson Shachi Kurl says that support grows even more if the law doesn’t side with B.C.“(The) majority of British Columbians do say that if that happens, if the courts rule and they do not rule in favour of continued blockage, or delay, then it should be time for the B.C. government to give in and allow the pipeline to be built,” she said.Kinder Morgan has halted construction of the pipeline, putting a May 31 deadline in place to decide on whether it’s viable to continue the project worth more than $8-billion.last_img read more

Service sector predicts Canadian drilling activity will fall even more in 2019Service sector predicts Canadian drilling activity will fall even more in 2019

first_imgCALGARY – The Petroleum Services Association of Canada is predicting more pain for the oil and gas sector next year.It predicts a total of 6,600 wells will be drilled in Canada in 2019, down about five per cent from an expected 6,980 wells this year, adding that translates to a year-over-year decrease of up to $1.8 billion in capital spending by exploration and production companies.Outgoing association chief executive Tom Whalen says the oilfield services sector in Canada is headed for a third year of stalled activity as export pipeline capacity constraints keep petroleum prices low.It forecasts an average Western Canadian Select price discount to New York-traded West Texas Intermediate of US$24.50 per barrel next year, about US$10 above typical differences.3,532 of those wells are epxected to be drilled in Alberta. The decrease in wells is going to mean $1,5 to $1.8 billion less in capitl spending by exploration and production companies across the country #yyc— Ian Campbell (@news_ian) November 1, 2018The forecast calls for activity to gradually ramp up during 2019 as crude-by-rail volumes rise to allow more barrels to get to market.PSAC announced Thursday that former Alberta cabinet minister and provincial trade representative Gary Mar will become its new president and CEO as of Dec. 1.last_img read more

BC windstorm cost insurers 37 million for loss to homes businesses vehiclesBC windstorm cost insurers 37 million for loss to homes businesses vehicles

first_imgVANCOUVER — The insured cost of damage from the windstorm that raged through southern B.C. in December is over $37 million, and the Insurance Bureau of Canada says that pushed the price of extreme weather in the country last year to $1.9 billion.The storm knocked down large trees and power poles, leaving over 750,000 customers without power, some of them through Christmas.The insurance bureau says over 3,000 homes were damaged, boats were scattered and the pier in White Rock was cut in half.The bureau says in a news release that as the financial costs of a changing climate rises, it is working with all levels of government to advocate for increased investment to mitigate impacts of extreme weather.Those changes could include investments in infrastructure to protect communities from floods and fires, improvement building codes and shift development of homes and businesses away from areas of highest risk.Bureau vice-president, Pacific, Aaron Sutherland says the financial costs of climate change are increasing rapidly and the storm is the latest example of the need to improve and adapt to the new weather reality.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Ropeadope Environmentalists say Alberta war room threat wont distract themRopeadope Environmentalists say Alberta war room threat wont distract them

first_imgEDMONTON — Environmental groups targeted by Alberta Premier Jason Kenney are shrugging off the new government’s promised $30-million “war room” to fight criticisms of the province’s energy industry.“The war room makes for good theatre, but the people who follow this closely are going to look at this as amateur hour,” said Keith Stewart of Greenpeace.“Chasing environmentalists might play well politically, but it’s not actually relevant to the discussion that Alberta and Canada need to be having,” added Simon Dyer of the clean-energy think tank Pembina Institute.Both groups have been singled out by Kenney as examples of ones distorting the truth about the impact of the oilsands. The premier has said government staff will be tasked with responding quickly to what he calls myths and lies.Kenney has also promised to fund lawsuits against offending environmentalists and to call a public inquiry into the role of money from U.S. foundations.“Stay tuned,” Energy Minister Sonya Savage said Tuesday. “We’ll have something to talk about next week.”Environmental groups have already been discussing informally what the United Conservative government might have in mind and how they should react.“We’ve been contacted,” said Devon Page of Ecojustice, an environmental law firm. “We’ve been saying to the groups, ‘We’re here. We’ll respond and represent you as we have in the past.’“What we’re trying hard not to do is to do what I think the Kenney government wants, which is to get distracted.”Dyer and Stewart said their groups are about 85 per cent funded by Canadians. The Pembina Institute was founded in Drayton Valley, Alta., and its headquarters remain in Calgary.Both called the war room political posturing aimed at the party’s base.“A lot of the rhetoric around our work and our contribution to Alberta has been based on complete misinformation,” said Dyer, who pointed out Pembina has worked with virtually every major energy company in the province.Stewart called the threats a rerun of the 2012 campaign against environmental groups fuelled by the right-wing The Rebel media group and led by Stephen Harper’s federal Conservatives.“We learned to play rope-a-dope,” said Stewart. “Stephen Harper was our best recruiter.“We had people contacting us saying, ‘How do I lie down in front of a bulldozer?’ We don’t usually get a lot of those calls but we were getting a lot of those calls.”Each group is confident in the accuracy of the facts it cites. Dyer said Pembina research has been used by investors, academics and governments.Stewart said the issue isn’t facts, but how they are understood.“Often what it is is a disagreement over which fact is important. Industry will say, ‘We’re reducing emissions per barrel.’ We’ll say, ‘Emissions are going up.’ Both statements are true and it depends which you think is more important.”Cara Zwibel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association said the Kenney government must tread carefully. It’s OK to defend your position, but not to threaten, she said.“If we’re talking about initiating lawsuits against individuals or organizations on the basis of speaking out on issues of public importance, then that raises serious problems,” she said. “Then we have a much more obvious impact and potential violation on freedom of expression.”The province could possibly expose itself to legal action if its statements harm a group or individual — say, by putting them at the centre of a Twitter firestorm, said an Edmonton lawyer.“There’s certainly some kind of moral responsibility in terms of understanding that kind of highly charged rhetoric,” said Sean Ward, who practises media law. “You have to understand the consequences that are likely to follow.”Ward said any cases the government funds would also be tough to win.“There are a lot of available defences. It’s difficult to see that this sort of general debate they’re going to be able to shut down with defamation law.”Environmentalists say their response will be to avoid distraction and carry on.“The vast majority active in this place don’t want to go back to a high conflict, polarizing environment,” Dyer said. “We’re not interested in polarizing this debate.”Bob Weber, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

New report looks at how seniors receive healthcare in CanadaNew report looks at how seniors receive healthcare in Canada

first_imgVANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – A new report from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons says when it comes to Canadians 65 and older, doctors are more likely to see women but actually provide more medical services to men.The report looks at what services Canadian seniors are using most as the population ages. The College’s director of health policy, Steve Slade, says the hope is for policy makers to take notice.“We’ve seen the grey tsunami coming for decades in Canada but we really haven’t taken a deep dive into our data to see who is doing what, and how much of it are they doing,” he says. “And what we saw was some really quite fascinating variations in terms of how family doctors, other specialists, are providing care to seniors.”RELATED: Health minister releases details of $50M dementia strategySlade is hoping the data will fill in some of the blanks in information about seniors’ care for those making policy decisions for the future.“They’ll look at our data and see that there are differences in the way that family doctors and internists and ophthalmologists and geriatricians are practicing and focusing their care on seniors and that that will get factored into some of their decision making.”Health Care for an Aging Population: A Study of How Physicians Care for Seniors in Canada looked at how 54,000 doctors provide care to seniors.The report also found seniors received about one third of all services provided by physicians from 2015 to 2016.last_img read more

Quebec town cancels twin cities project in country accused of human rightsQuebec town cancels twin cities project in country accused of human rights

first_imgMONTREAL — A town east of Montreal has cancelled a twin cities project with Bujumbura in Burundi after an outcry from members of the African country’s Canadian diaspora who called the state a brutal dictatorship.Yves Corriveau, mayor of Mont-St-Hilaire, Que., signed the twin cities deal on July 11 in Burundi, but his council revoked the agreement Tuesday night in his absence.As soon as an association of Burundian Canadians found out about the deal they wrote an open letter reminding Corriveau of the rapes, murders and other human rights abuses allegedly committed by security services in that state.The town council said in a statement Tuesday the agreement between the two cities was not properly approved.Omer Ndacayisaba, a federal bureaucrat and member of the association that wrote to Corriveau, said today he is happy to hear the town council cancelled the twin cities project.Twin city deals are legal agreements entered into between two cities to promote cultural and commercial ties. Montreal, for instance, has similar agreements with a number of cities, including Hiroshima, Manila, and Shanghai.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Divers following uncovered debris in Labrador plane crash search RCMPDivers following uncovered debris in Labrador plane crash search RCMP

first_imgST. JOHN’S, N.L. — More than two weeks into the search in Labrador for a downed float plane and its missing passengers, the RCMP says divers have been able to focus their search area after more debris was found Thursday.Divers have been searching Mistastin Lake, about 100 kilometres southwest of Nain, seeking three missing men and the plane that crashed there on July 15.Seven men, including the pilot, were on board the de Havilland DHC-2 Beaver that had been travelling from Three Rivers Lodge to Mistastin Lake, for a fishing trip from which they never returned. Four bodies have been recovered.Cpl. Jolene Garland of the RCMP says divers are hopeful that focusing the search around the area where the debris was found underwater could bring them closer to the plane and the missing men.Garland says evidence suggests divers may be in the right area, though no additional bodies have been found since July 24, when that of a 50-year-old fishing guide from Newfoundland and Labrador was recovered.Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said last week that Canadian Armed Forces personnel were joining the recovery efforts. The cause of the crash is still unknown.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Ontario court upholds changes to jury selection brought in through Bill C75Ontario court upholds changes to jury selection brought in through Bill C75

first_imgPaola Loriggio, The Canadian Press TORONTO — An Ontario court has ruled that changes to the jury selection process brought in as part of sweeping legal reforms do not interfere with an accused person’s right to a fair trial.The constitutional challenge to Bill C-75 was launched by Pardeep Singh Chouhan, whose first-degree murder trial had reached the jury selection phase on the same day the changes laid out in the legislation came into force. Chouhan’s lawyers said the new rules breached his rights to a fair trial and impartial jury.The reforms include scrapping “peremptory challenges,” a mechanism that allowed lawyers for either side to dismiss a certain number of prospective jurors without explanation.Lawyers can still seek to disqualify any prospective jurors they believe cannot remain impartial, but under Bill C-75, the judge is now tasked with making the final decision. That role was previously held by lay people called triers, some of whom also sit on the jury.The legislation also gives trial judges the discretion to set aside a juror for the purpose of maintaining public confidence in the justice system.In a decision handed down earlier this week, Superior Court Justice John McMahon said the new federal law struck the right balance.“The ability to exclude a potential juror based simply on their appearance, their look, or a person’s gut feeling, without furnishing a reason, is not transparent,” he wrote. “The elimination of the peremptory challenge does make the justice system more transparent, but without removing either parties’ ability to set aside potential jurors for articulable reasons.”The government moved to amend the jury selection process following the controversial acquittal of Gerald Stanley, who was charged with second-degree murder in the killing of Colten Boushie, a 22-year-old Indigenous man. The jury in that case had no Indigenous members, and Ottawa said the changes in Bill C-75 aimed to make juries more representative.Chouhan’s lawyers, however, argued the new procedures would likely have the opposite effect and would contravene their client’s constitutional right to be tried by an independent and impartial jury.They also argued the legislation was overly broad, in that it introduced a major change — the elimination of peremptory challenges — in response to discrimination in one specific case. Two criminal lawyers filed affidavits in support of the challenge, saying peremptory challenges allowed them to select jurors who are from a similar racial or cultural background as the accused and reject those who, among other things, appeared to look at the accused with disdain.McMahon said that while each accused is entitled to a representative jury panel, they are not entitled to a trial jury which “reflects the proportionality of the population” or is made up of members of the same demographic group.The test, McMahon wrote, is whether a reasonable person, fully informed of the circumstances, would have a “reasonable apprehension of bias” because of the elimination of peremptory challenges.The judge noted there are several other safeguards in place to ensure a jury is independent and impartial. These include a mechanism to screen prospective jurors for bias and the trial judge’s ability to excuse or reject prospective jurors for specific reasons.“It appears that if either party can articulate reasons why a prospective juror would not be impartial, the judge would clearly have the ability to stand aside a prospective juror to maintain public confidence in the administration of justice,” he wrote.The criminal justice system should strive for transparency, he said, noting a judge’s actions would fulfil that goal and may also be open to review if necessary.The judge also rejected an argument that requiring judges to determine whether a prospective juror can remain impartial eradicates the independence of the jury. McMahon ruled the changes only affect a selection procedure, not the jury’s “important task” in reaching a verdict.“The jury members will no longer have to make determinations in relation to the impartiality of other jurors and, when selected, can concentrate on their primary goal, which is determining the guilt or innocence of the accused,” he said.Chouhan’s lawyers had also argued that should the changes be upheld, they should not apply to those whose alleged offence happened before the reforms took effect. But McMahon said the changes are “procedural in nature” and should be applied for every jury selected after the new rules went into force, including the one that will eventually decide Chouhan’s pending trial.This story by the Canadian Press was first published Sept. 26, 2019.last_img read more

Stars Celebrate End Of Cosmetics Testing On Animals In EuropeStars Celebrate End Of Cosmetics Testing On Animals In Europe

first_imgCruelty Free International, the global non-profit organization dedicated to ending cosmetics testing on animals worldwide, has been joined by celebrities Chrissie Hynde, Twiggy, Jenny Seagrove, Kimberly Wyatt and Joanna Lumley, to celebrate the end of cosmetics testing on animals in Europe.“Cruelty-free beauty is here in the EU at last!” said Joanna Lumley. “I have been calling for this day with Cruelty Free International (BUAV) since 1991. Well done Cruelty Free International for your tireless work in the EU to end the terrible practice of testing cosmetics on animals.”The final phase of the 7th amendment of the EU Cosmetics Directive, which is set to come into force on 11th March 2013, will mean that new cosmetic products and ingredients on sale in the EU will not be tested on animals anywhere in the world. The ban will affect all cosmetics including all toiletries and beauty products, from soap to toothpaste. This historic achievement is the culmination of over 20 years of campaigning spearheaded by the BUAV, founder of Cruelty Free International.“I am proud to have supported Cruelty Free International (BUAV) throughout this significant campaign to end the sale of animal-tested cosmetics in the EU,” said Twiggy.
“I have always supported the work of Cruelty Free International (BUAV) to end cosmetics testing on animals and I am delighted to be a part of this historic event,” added Jenny Seagrove. “Congratulations to Cruelty Free International for securing this victory for animals!”Over the years, the campaign to end cosmetics testing on animals has received overwhelming support from a host of high profile celebrities, including Sir Paul McCartney, Ricky Gervais, Morrissey, Sienna Miller, Joss Stone, Jude Law, Dannii Minogue, The Levellers, Annie Lennox, Toyah Wilcox, Alexei Sayle, Gillian Taylforth, Andrew Sachs and Sadie Frost.“I joined with Cruelty Free International (BUAV) to speak out against animal cosmetics testing in 1996,” said Chrissie Hynde. “I am thrilled to hear this great news for animals and congratulate Cruelty Free International for their hard work and determination to make this happen, and the EU for doing the right thing by the animals and putting the humanity into beauty.”
In 2012, the BUAV established Cruelty Free International, the first global organization dedicated to ending cosmetics animal testing worldwide. Shockingly over 80% of the world still allows animal testing for cosmetics. Cruelty Free International works with governments, regulators, companies and partner organisations and has placed the issue of animal testing on the agenda of many governments for the very first time as part of a global strategy to tackle product testing on animals. Cruelty Free International will apply its determination and vision on a global stage to repeat its success in Europe across the world.“WE DID IT!!!” said Kimberly Wyatt. “It took 20 years but as of March 11, 2013 testing cosmetic products on animals will be banned in the EU! We’ve done all we could here at Beautiful Movements Cosmetics to help fight for that change and now that it is happening we feel elated! Time to celebrate our furry friends’ victory!”last_img read more