More women few minorities Docs detail results of Liberal patronage overhaul

first_imgOTTAWA — The Liberal government’s overhaul of the patronage system has led to gender parity in government appointments, but new figures show few of those women are in leadership posts and visible minorities are being left out.Documents from the Privy Council Office show that as of last year, 55.5 per cent of appointees to federal agencies, boards and organizations were women, slightly above their proportion in the Canadian population.But the Liberals’ “merit-based” process for appointments has screened out nearly 62 per cent of visible-minority candidates as insufficiently qualified, compared to 38 per cent of applicants who are not visible minorities.Visible-minority applicants who made it past that cut and into job competitions were less likely to be recommended on so-called “advice letters” or to be appointed.According to data released to The Canadian Press under access-to-information law, the Liberals have appointed slightly more Indigenous people to government positions than their proportion of the population, but markedly fewer people with disabilities.Queen’s University politics professor Kathy Brock says that raises questions about whether there’s something in the screening process that disadvantages people with certain characteristics or from certain communities.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Closures imposed more possible as toadlet migration underway in Whistler BC

first_imgWHISTLER, B.C. — Some very small creatures are forcing some big changes in a popular section of the Resort Municipality of Whistler, B.C., as an annual migration begins to peak.The municipality has closed the Lost Lake access road, a parking lot and the events lawn, and says other closures are possible as thousands of western toadlets make their trek from the lake into the surrounding forest.The dime-sized amphibians are native to British Columbia and listed as a species of special concern.They breed in the lake where tadpoles mature, then spend most of their time in the forest, meaning as many as 40,000 of the tiny toads have to hop across beaches, trails, lawns and roads during the August migration. The municipality says busy Lost Lake beach and the beach lawn are still open but could be closed if high numbers of toads start hopping in that direction.Other areas around the lake are still open but visitors are advised to look for “active migration zone” signs and watch where they ride or step because the toadlets are tough to see and can be easily crushed underfoot.The creatures have been included in Whistler’s monitoring program since 2005 as the municipality focuses on species that offer insight into the health of area ecosystems.The municipality says western toads are an important part of the Lost Lake environment because the tadpoles feed on residue in the lake, keeping the water clean.“Monitoring the stages and development of the tadpoles throughout the summer enables (environmental technicians and volunteers) to proactively prepare for the migration and focus on public education,” the municipality says in a news release. The Canadian Presslast_img read more

NAFTA Hong Kong on agenda for TrudeauTrump bilateral meeting during G7 summit

first_imgOTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will have a tete-a-tete with President Donald Trump this weekend on the margins of the G7 summit in France.White House officials have confirmed the bilateral meeting between the two leaders.Officials say the two will discuss a wide range of issues, in particular their shared commitment to ratifying the new North American Free Trade Agreement — or the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, as Trump has dubbed it.Mexico has already ratified the continental trade pact; the Trudeau government, which has introduced implementation legislation in the House of Commons, is holding off on final ratification until the deal is ratified in the United States, where Democratic lawmakers are threatening to block the process.Officials say Trump and Trudeau will also discuss tensions in Hong Kong, where pro-democracy protests have been escalating for weeks, sparked by proposed legislation that would have seen some suspects in criminal cases sent to mainland China for trial.Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland has expressed support for the right to peaceful protest in Hong Kong, earning a rebuke from China, which is already furious with Canada for detaining Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou and has retaliated by detaining two Canadians and blocking imports of Canadian canola.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Canadian youth take calls from drastic climate action to the streets

first_img City hall rally attendee Bruce Smedley. City hall rally attendee Marina Riva and her family. Calgarians have gathered outside #yyc city hall protesting the lack of government action on climate change.— Kayla Bruch (@KaylaBruch1) September 27, 2019Several retailers and workplaces are closing, at least for the duration of the protests, including Mountain Equipment Co-op, Lush Cosmetics, and Bridgehead Coffee in Ottawa.“As a collective of young people from across the country, we aim to steer Canadian society off our current path of ecological and social catastrophe,” says the mandate of Climate Strike Canada, one of the groups spearheading the marches. “Drastic climate action is the only option for humanity.”Coming as it is in the midst of Canada’s federal election campaign, three of the five national party leaders will be marching. NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh is marching in Victoria. Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and Green Leader Elizabeth May will both be in Montreal, where the Swedish schoolgirl who started it all will also attend.Greta Thunberg began her climate strikes with weekly sit-ins outside the Swedish legislature last year, and in a few months kids around the world joined her cause. On Monday Thunberg delivered a scathing rebuke to world leaders at the United Nations climate summit in New York City.“For more than 30 years the science has been crystal clear,” she told them. “How dare you look away.”Teen climate activist Greta Thunberg speaking with reporters. The first reporter says Thunberg met with Liberal Leader @JustinTrudeau this morning. She says she has a message for all the politicians, listen to the science, act on the science. #elxn43 #cdnpoli— Cormac Mac Sweeney (@cmaconthehill) September 27, 2019Also on Monday she filed a complaint with 15 other children alleging five UN members —Argentina, Brazil, France, Germany, and Turkey — failed to uphold their obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child by not doing enough to stop the climate crisis.Thunberg said they are the five biggest emitters who signed the convention, though Canada ratified the convention in 1991 and has annual greenhouse-gas emissions greater than all but Germany in that list.The world’s biggest emitters, including China and the United States, did not ratify the convention.Conservative leader Andrew Scheer will be in Vancouver Friday but did not have plans to participate in a march there.Climate Strike Canada has a list of demands that includes:— Canada’s recognizing its “disproportionate role” in the climate crisis— enshrining the right to a healthy environment in law— rejecting any new fossil fuel development or transportation projects— setting “bold” targets to cut greenhouse-gas emissions to just one-quarter of what they were in 2005 by 2030.Canada’s current goal is to cut them to 70 per cent of 2005 levels by 2030, though Trudeau and May have both promised to exceed that and to make Canada carbon neutral by 2050. OTTAWA — Thousands of Canadians are expected to hit the streets today demanding “widespread, systemic change” to halt the scary impact of a warming planet.From St. John’s to Tofino, B.C., and as far north as Inuvik in the Northwest Territories, marches are planned in at least 85 Canadian cities and towns, as part of the international climate movement.A number of international movements are coming together for one, massive climate change protest at the end of what they call “Week for Future.”There was another international climate strike day last Friday, but in Canada the major events are taking place today.More than 46,000 people signalled on Facebook they plan to attend the event in Vancouver, nearly 11,000 for Edmonton, and 5,000 in Halifax.Some school boards and universities are cancelling classes during the protests or telling students they will not be penalized for missing class during that time.In Calgary, several rallies are taking place including one at the University of Calgary and City Hall.A climate strike is being held @UCalgary. Over 600 students pledged to walk out of school today. They’re demanding a ‘Green New Deal.’ They say we only have eleven years to deal with what they call a climate crisis. #yyc #GreenNewDeal #ClimateStrike #ClimateAction @660NEWS— Saif Kaisar (@StaySaif) September 27, 2019 Mia Rabson, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Conversations For A Cause Return To Nerd HQ

first_imgZachary Levi and The Nerd Machine, a multimedia company that brings the best of apparel, accessories, and both long and short form video content to its global clientele, announced today that Nerd HQ will return to San Diego July 18th-21st in a new location, Petco Park (100 Park Blvd, San Diego, CA 92101), home of the San Diego Padres.Over the last three years, Nerd HQ has continually expanded and given fans a unique experience while in San Diego for the international comic book and entertainment festival. This year Nerd HQ will again provide fans with a home base where they can experience cutting edge technology and gaming showcases, exciting autograph signings, cornerstone events and exclusive parties, including Levi’s annual NERD Party.“With the move to Petco Park, we can bring fans an even bigger, more dynamic experience during Nerd HQ 2013,” said Zachary Levi, Founder of The Nerd Machine. “Moving to the ballpark is a major step in the growth of Nerd HQ and will allow us to expand our tradition of offering exclusive access to new games, technology, and the opportunity for intimate conversations with some of the Hollywood’s most influential celebrities and creatives.”Returning this year is the very popular philanthropic panel series, “Conversations for a Cause” which will stream through The Nerd Machine YouTube page, NerdMachineTV. Last year’s panels raised $140,000 for Operation Smile and consisted of some of the most talked about films, television shows and video games, including: “Chuck,” “Doctor Who,” “Grimm,” “NTSF,” “Robot Chicken,” “The Man with the Iron Fist,” “Expendables 2,” “Tomb Raider” and “Twilight.” Panelists included many of today’s top actors, actresses and film and game makers including Ashley Greene, Guillermo del Toro, Jason Ritter, Jared Padalecki, Joss Whedon, Kellan Lutz, Lucy Liu, Nathan Fillion, RZA, Seth Green, Stan Lee, Terry Crews, and Zachary Levi, among many others. This year’s panels, which will be announced in the coming days, are sure to bring fun surprises and intriguing discussions. Individual tickets will sell for $22, with proceeds benefiting Operation Smile.For more information, schedule updates and tickets please visit read more

Iconic Music Series AMERICAN IDOL Lands on CTV Two March 11

first_imgAdvertisement Login/Register With: Twitter “We’re excited to be working with Bell Media to bring the new season of the original singing competition to Canada,” said Michela Di Mondo, SVP, Sales and Distribution, FremantleMedia International, Canada. “AMERICAN IDOL is an iconic series which has entertained families across Canada for years and we look forward to doing it again.”Hosted by Emmy® Award winner Ryan Seacrest, who has served as the series host since its inception in 2002, the return of AMERICAN IDOL features superstar judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, and Luke Bryan. To date, AMERICAN IDOL has garnered 57 Emmy nominations and eight wins. Over 15 seasons, the series has launched the careers of Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Adam Lambert, Jennifer Hudson, among others, who have won 13 GRAMMYS®, two GOLDEN GLOBES®, and an ACADEMY AWARD®. Additionally, contestants have sold more than 61 million albums, resulting in more than 47 Platinum records and more than 444 Billboard #1 hits, and sold more than 257 million digital downloads.The nationwide search for the next superstar kicked off in August 2017, as the Idol Bus traveled across America in its pursuit for talent, covering 23 cities across the country. Auditioning was made easier than ever as hopefuls also had the opportunity to submit audition videos online, as well as via select social media platforms using an official tag, #TheNextIdol, cultivating over 300,000 posts. Also, for the first time in American Idol history, hopefuls had the opportunity to audition through a live stream platform.AMERICAN IDOL is produced by FremantleMedia North America and 19 Entertainment, a division of CORE Media Group. Executive producers include FremantleMedia North America’s Trish Kinane and Jennifer Mullin, along with co-executive producer, Megan Wolflick.  Recent additions to the team include Phil McIntyre, the music mogul behind multiplatinum artists such as Demi Lovato and Nick Jonas, who joins the series as executive producer and music producer and multi-instrumentalist Kristopher Pooley as music director.  FremantleMedia International distributes the series worldwide.SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:Twitter:@CTV_Television@KatyPerry@LukeBryanOnline @LionelRichie@RyanSeacrestFacebook: CTVCTV is Canada’s #1 private broadcaster. Featuring a wide range of quality news, sports, information, and entertainment programming, CTV has been Canada’s most-watched television network for the past 16 years in a row. CTV is a division of Bell Media, Canada’s premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio, digital, and Out-of-Home. Bell Media is owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada’s largest communications company. More information about CTV can be found on the network’s website at TORONTO, Feb. 20, 2018 – CTV announced today the acquisition of beloved singing competition AMERICAN IDOLfrom FremantleMedia International to anchor CTV Two’s midseason schedule Sundays and Mondays at 8 p.m. ET/ 9 p.m. MT, beginning March 11.The all-new AMERICAN IDOL joins the previously announced pick up of three new CTV Two midseason comedies – LIVING BIBLICALLY (Feb. 26), SPLITTING UP TOGETHER (March 27), and ALEX, INC. (March 28). CTV Two also announced today the addition of two more series to the network: GOTHAM, moving to a new Thursday at 8 p.m. ET / 9 p.m. MT time slot beginning March 1, as well as MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, returning to CTV Two Fridays at 8 p.m. ET / 9 p.m. MT with a two-hour premiere on March 2.“AMERICAN IDOL is a historic franchise,” said Mike Cosentino, President, Content and Programming. “We are looking forward to reintroducing the series and its star-studded judging panel to Canadians as a new anchor for CTV Two.” Advertisement Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisementlast_img read more


first_img Twitter Advertisement Advertisement But this season he has roles in three major Toronto-shot series, including Anne With an E from CBC and Netflix, CBC’s comedy Crawford and Audience Network’s thriller Condor. And don’t forget a cameo in Drake’s Degrassi blockbuster reunion music video for “I’m Upset.”Abuzeid is not a household name, but he is having something of a breakout moment, fuelled by the fact that according to the CBC he is the first Black character to appear on the critically acclaimed series, based on the 1908 classic Anne of Green Gables books by Lucy Maud Montgomery. You’re going to see a lot more of Dalmar Abuzeid on television this fall. And that’s not a bad thing.The 27-year-old Toronto actor is known for playing the precocious Danny Van Zandt on six seasons of the Canadian series Degrassi: The Next Generation. Advertisementcenter_img Facebook Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Dalmar Abuzeid as Sebastian “Bash” Lacroix in Anne with an E. (STEVE SCOTT)last_img read more


first_img Login/Register With: Advertisement This marks the second time Ms. Edugyan has won the Giller, after taking the 2011 prize for her novel Half Blood Blues. She is only the third author to win the Giller twice after M.G. Vassanji (in 1994 and 2003) and Alice Munro (1998 and 2004) and the first to win for consecutive novels.Earlier this year, Ms. Edugyan was shortlisted for the Writers’ Trust fiction prize and the Man Booker Prize in Britain (which Half Blood Blues was also shortlisted for) but came up just short. She is also a finalist for the Carnegie medal for fiction awarded by the American Library Association, which will be announced in January.Published by Patrick Crean Editions at HarperCollins Canada, Ms. Edugyan’s novel tells the historical, coming-of-age tale of George Washington Black, a boy born into slavery on a plantation in Barbados who goes on to much more in the world. Earlier this year, she told The Globe of the writing process: “Some of the details were just horrifying. Some of the research was really difficult to do. But I really thought in order to write about this man, you have to see where he’s coming from, you have to deal with the details of his childhood. What it would have looked like to be a slave on a day-to-day basis, living out your life in these conditions. I didn’t want to flinch away from that.” LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Esi Edugyan got this one. After a whirlwind literary awards season that has seen numerous shortlist nominations for the Victoria author, Ms. Edugyan has taken home the $100,000 Scotiabank Giller Prize. Canada’s most lauded award for literature was given out at a ceremony in Toronto on Monday night, where the prize jury announced Ms. Edugyan’s win for her acclaimed novel Washington Black.“In a climate in which so many forms of truth-telling are under siege, this feels like a wonderful and important celebration of words,” Ms. Edugyan said in her short acceptance speech.“I felt like I was taking a risk in doing something very different. People kept asking if I was going to do more about jazz or World War II [along the lines of Half Blood Blues],” she said after her win. “So I feel maybe I’m ready to write about anything – that it’s okay to be able to go out there and choose any topic and write about it.” Advertisementcenter_img Advertisement Twitter Elana Rabinovitch, left, daughter of Giller founder Jack Rabinovitch, congratulates Esi Edugyan at a ceremony in Toronto on Monday night. Facebooklast_img read more


first_imgHERE ARE ALL THE CASTING ANNOUNCEMENTS FOR NETFLIX’S THE HAUNTING OF BLY MANORManors are built to be haunted, so far as TV and film is concerned, and The Haunting of Bly Manor, Mike Flanagan’s awaited follow-up to The Haunting of Hill House, now has a cast to do the haunting.Over the past few days, Flanagan has been tweeting up a storm, slowly unveiling a series of exciting new additions to the cast of the upcoming Netflix show. Let’s run them down.First, a couple we already knew about: Henry Thomas (E.T.), and Kate Siegel, returning from the original series, and also Mike Flanagan’s wife, fun facts. READ MORESEASON 2 OF THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE IS GOING FULL-ON AMERICAN HORROR STORYNetflix’s The Haunting of Hill House has found its cast for season 2 of the anthology series. Much like FX’s American Horror Story, the new season — titled The Haunting of Bly Manor and based on the Henry James novella Turn of the Screw — will feature plenty of familiar faces from the show’s previous instalment.Victoria Pedretti, who broke hearts as ill-fated Nell Crain in the Netflix series’ first season, is confirmed to lead season 2 as Dani, a governess tasked with caring for two children in the totally haunted Bly Manor. READ MORE THE HAUNTING OF BLY MANOR: EVERYTHING WE KNOW SO FARFans of The Haunting of Hill House will by now already know we’re getting a second season! Instead of continuing with the Craine family and Hill House, Mike Flanagan will look to another classic ghost story to frighten subscribers worldwide. The Haunting of Bly Manor is already set to become one of the most exciting Originals that we expect to see in 2020. Here’s everything we know so far about the upcoming anthology series.The Haunting of Bly Manor is the second season in the Netflix Original The Haunting anthology series. Bly Manor will be adapting the classic gothic literature novella The Turn of the Screw by Henry James. While Netflix did not release viewing figures for the first season, its popularity exploded and fast became one of the most watched shows on Netflix. Mike Flanagan is definitely cementing his place as one of the best Horror/Thriller directors of today. His fruitful relationship with Netflix is exciting for all horror fans subscribed to Netflix. READ MORE Facebook THE HAUNTING OF BLY MANOR WITH VICTORIA PEDRETTI & RAHUL KOHLI FILMING IN VANCOUVER THIS FALL/WINTERThe Haunting of Bly Manor — a sequel to Netflix’s hit horror series The Haunting of Hill House — films in Vancouver this Fall and Winter.Filming dates: September 30th to February 21st, 2020.Adapted from the Henry James novel The Turn of the Screw, The Haunting of Bly Manor is set at an old country mansion with Victoria Pedretti from the first series as the governess looking after the two children — Amelie Smith as Flora and Benjamin Ainsworth as Miles.  READ MORE Advertisement Advertisementcenter_img Advertisement Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitterlast_img read more

Trappers in Robinson Huron treaty area want aerial herbicide spraying to end

first_imgChristopher ReadAPTN InvestigatesWhile a trial in San Francisco makes headlines around the world, a group of trappers and Indigenous Elders in Ontario are taking note.San Francisco has become a hot spot for legal challenges against Monsanto, the subsidiary of Bayer which produces much of the world’s glyphosate-based herbicide, commonly known by the trademark Roundup.A jury trial in San Francisco agreed on March 19, that California man Edwin Hardeman’s lawyers had proven that exposure to the Monsanto product Roundup was a substantial factor in causing his non-Hodgkin lymphoma.(The United States District Court for the Northern District of California where Edwin Hardeman’s suit against Monsanto is being tried. Photo: Josh Grummett/APTN Investigates)The second phase of the Hardeman trial is now focused on liability and damages.Meanwhile in the Robinson Huron Treaty area of Ontario, a group calling itself the Traditional Ecological Knowledge [or TEK] Elders have gotten nowhere in their efforts to stop the aerial spraying of glyphosate-based herbicide as a forest management practice.“The Anishinaabeg do not believe in any chemical use in their territory,” said TEK co-founder Ray Owl. “If it can kill one item, one blade of grass, it’s not good.”In the forestry industry, it has become common to use glyphosate-based herbicide to kill off plants that will compete with newly planted seedlings in areas that have been clear cut.But the TEK Elders and some trappers in the Robinson Huron Treaty area say they are seeing declines in animal numbers which they attribute to glyphosate herbicide.Owl and his TEK group have approached both the federal and provincial governments about their concerns in regard to the aerial spraying of glyphosate-based herbicide in Robinson-Huron Treaty territory.(Trappers Bob Behrens and Joe Jones study a map of the area around Behrens’ trap line near Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. Photo: Christopher Read/APTN Investigates)“They’re really good at playing ping pong,” said Garden River First Nation Councilor Sue Chiblow of the government response to the TEK inquiries.Chiblow helps organize the TEK Elders’ efforts to stop the aerial spraying of glyphosate herbicide.“We went to the Ministry of Natural Resources and they said ‘well no we just issued the license so that’s not our problem, it’s Health Canada’s problem” said Chiblow.  “So we went to Health Canada and they said ‘well we don’t actually do the spraying, we’re just saying that it’s ok and it’s up to the companies to use it or not use it.”Bob Behrens is a trapper from Sault Ste. Marie who has also written to the provincial government with his concerns.Behrens has been trapping on the same trap line since 1985 and says he has been watching animal numbers dwindle since 1988 when he was informed in a letter from the MNRF that Vision – a glyphosate-based herbicide made by Monsanto for forestry applications – was to be sprayed where he traps.“We had an abundance of rabbits, songbirds, porcupines, beaver. They all started to decline – rabbits just started to reappear last year. And I’m going to say for a 20-year period there were no rabbits here. A lot of the trappers are having problems with the decline in beaver,” said Behrens.Behrens’ friend and fellow-trapper Joe Jones of Garden River First Nation has seen dwindling numbers of animals too.This most recent trapping season, Jones – who is also one of the TEK Elders – began noticing a change in beaver meat he’s harvested – and he wonders if its connected to the spraying.“Eating the beaver, this fall it’s going black,” said Jones, “Especially the bigger beaver.  You cut ‘em open . . . it’s not as red, it’s really black.”(Trapper Bob Behrens demonstrating how to set a trap on his trap line near Sault Ste. Marie. Photo: Christopher Read/APTN Investigates)In 2017, Behrens asked the federal Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change to conduct a review of the use of glyphosate herbicide in forestry, but he was told by the department that a review was “not warranted.”APTN Investigates requested interviews with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry but those requests were declined.The ministry did email APTN a statement, which said in part, “Herbicide use is very limited in Ontario and they are only used when absolutely necessary – usually amounts to less than 0.2 per cent of Ontario’s forested area in any given year….Health Canada recently re-evaluated the use of glyphosate, finding no unacceptable risks to human health or the environment when used as directed.”However, a federal government publication about forestry acknowledges that glyphosate based herbicide causes reductions in animal numbers.“Short-term reductions in numbers of some wildlife species (e.g., small animals or birds) are known to occur,” the publication Frontline put out by the Canadian Forestry Service in Sault Ste. Marie states.The article goes on to say that, “Such changes are typically quite transient, with numbers returning to normal levels within 2-3 years as vegetation and preferred habitat or food re-establishes on the treated site.”The Frontline publication also notes that similarly moose and deer may also avoid glyphosate-treated areas for “a few years.”However, Jones and Behrens say they have noticed ongoing declines in animal numbers over a 30 year period.Some reports indicate glyphosate may disrupt the endocrine systems of animals and humans.  Endocrine disruption could result in changes to metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function etc.But most of the governmental regulatory agencies in the world say that glyphosate ought to be safe – in contrast to decisions made by two juries in recent San Francisco court cases.Most recently, a jury ruled this week that Edwin Hardeman’s lawyers had proved “by a preponderance of evidence that his exposure to Roundup was a substantial factor in causing” his non-Hodgkin lymphoma.Previous to the Hardeman case, a San Francisco-area man named Lee Johnson was awarded U.S. $289 million by a jury in 2018. The judge later slashed Johnson’s amount to US $78 million – and Johnson has yet to see a penny of it due to appeals by the Monsanto legal team.In determining punitive damages, the jury in the Johnson trial determined that Monsanto had acted with “malice and oppression” in attempting to conceal their product’s potential danger.Bayer, the parent company which now owns Monsanto, maintains that glyphosate herbicide is a safe product and in a recent statement they point to “more than 800 rigorous studies” submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and other regulators, as well as the “largest and most recent epidemiologic study” which followed more than 50,000 pesticide applicators for more than 20 years and found no association between glyphosate-based herbicides and cancer.But the fact that Johnson’s lawyers were able to convince the jury that his non-Hodgkin lymphoma was caused by his exposure to glyphosate has emboldened a wave of litigants, and more than 11,000 people have filed similar suits against Monsanto in the U.S.(Trapper and TEK Elder Joe Jones with Garden River First Nation councillor Sue Chiblow. Photo: Christopher Read/APTN Investigates)The question of whether this legal trend will continue to gather momentum is on the minds of the TEK Elders, as is the question of what effect it may have on regulators such as Health Canada.The World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer classified glyphosate as a “probably carcinogenic to humans” in 2015 – and for that reason, the TEK elders have decided to write to the WHO for help in their fight to shut down aerial spraying in their territory.Chiblow is optimistic about the letter to the WHO she’s beginning to write.“They dictate to other governments about health and what’s good and what’s bad,” said Chiblow. “So the World Health Organization should be able to assist.”Jennifer Moore is one of Edwin Hardeman’s two main attorneys, and she also thinks contacting the WHO is a smart move.“Going to the Wold Health Organization is absolutely the right thing they should do,” said Moore.“They need to get away from any type of body that is subject to political pressure because what we have seen is that Monsanto has incredible lobbying efforts.” read more

Prominent New York restaurateur accused of sexual misconduct

first_imgNEW YORK, N.Y. – One of the owners of several high-profile New York restaurants is taking a leave of absence after being accused of sexual misconduct by several women who worked for him.The New York Times reported the allegations against Ken Friedman Tuesday. According to the report, several women who worked for Friedman at the Spotted Pig restaurant said he regularly subjected them to unwanted sexual advances and groping.The Spotted Pig regularly attracted celebrity guests since it opened in 2004 with its VIP floor. And Friedman won the James Beard Foundation’s outstanding restaurateur of the year award in 2016.Friedman, who co-owns the Spotted Pig and four other New York restaurants with chef April Bloomfield, apologized for his actions in a statement that the Times uploaded to its website.An email to Friedman’s representatives was not immediately answered.Natalie Saibel, a longtime server at the Spotted Pig, told the Times about how in 2015 Friedman ran his hands over her buttocks and groin while saying he was searching for a forbidden cellphone.Another longtime waitress, Trish Nelson, told the Times Friedman grabbed her head and pulled it toward his crotch as she knelt to collect glasses from a low shelf.In addition to the New York restaurants, Friedman’s company owns Tosca Cafe in San Francisco and recently opened the Hearth & Hound in Los Angeles.last_img read more

BRP raises quarterly dividend reports Q4 profit down from year ago

first_imgMONTREAL – BRP Inc. raised its dividend as it reported a drop in profit for its latest quarter compared with a year ago as revenue also declined.The maker of Ski-Doo snowmobiles says it will pay a quarterly dividend of nine cents per share, up a penny from its previous quarterly payment to shareholders.The increase came as BRP reported a profit attributable to shareholders of $115.2 million or $1.12 per diluted share for the quarter ended Jan. 31.That compared with a profit of $136.6 million attributable to shareholders or $1.22 per diluted share a year earlier.On a normalized basis, BRP said it earned 96 cents per diluted share compared with $1 per share a year ago.Revenue in what was the company’s fourth quarter totalled $1.26 billion, down from nearly $1.31 billion.Companies in this story: (TSX:DOO)last_img read more

Judge orders JayZ to face SEC questions in financial probe

first_imgNEW YORK, N.Y. – A New York judge says Jay-Z must answer questions from the Securities and Exchange Commission in a financial probe by the regulator.Lawyers for the SEC and Jay-Z settled on May 15 for a deposition Tuesday after U.S. District Judge Paul Gardephe (GAHR’-duh-fee) said Jay-Z can’t dodge the questions any longer.Jay-Z has argued that his testimony is not that important to the SEC’s probe of the Iconix Brand Group. Jay-Z, who was not in court, sold his apparel brand to Iconix in 2007. He also says he’s too busy getting ready for a worldwide tour starting next month.Gardephe said the SEC has shown that Jay-Z’s testimony about the sale of his company and his participation in meetings, phone calls and emails are relevant to the probe into Iconix.last_img read more

Scientists reap data from Hawaiis rumbling Kilauea volcano

first_imgHONOLULU, Hawaii – Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano may be disrupting life in paradise with its bursts of ash and bright-orange lava, but it also has scientists wide-eyed, eager to advance what’s known about volcanoes.The good news is: Volcanoes reveal secrets when they’re rumbling, which means Kilauea is producing a bonanza of information.While scientists monitored Big Island lava flows in 1955 and 1960, equipment then was far less sophisticated. Given new technology, they can now gather and study an unprecedented volume of data.“Geophysical monitoring techniques that have come online in the last 20 years have now been deployed at Kilauea,” said George Bergantz, professor of earth and space sciences at the University of Washington. “We have this remarkable opportunity … to see many more scales of behaviour both preceding and during this current volcanic crisis.”Starting May 3, Kilauea has fountained lava and flung ash and rocks from its summit, destroying hundreds of homes, closing key highways and prompting health warnings. Kilauea is one of five volcanos that form the Big Island, and is a “shield” volcano — built up over time as lava flows layer on top of layer.Technically speaking, it has been continuously erupting since 1983. But the recent combination of earthquakes shaking the ground, steam-driven explosions at the top, and lava creeping into a new area some 12 miles (20 kilometres) from the summit represents a departure from its behaviour over the past 35 years, said Erik Klemetti, a volcanologist at Ohio’s Denison University.What’s happening now is a bit more like the Kilauea of nearly a century ago. In 1924, steam explosions at the summit lasted for more than two weeks.Scientists are looking into what caused the change and whether this shift in the volcano’s magma plumbing system will become the new normal.Radar allows researchers to measure the height of ash plumes shooting from the summit, even when they occur at night. Plume heights are an effect of how much heat energy is released and the explosion’s intensity.“It’s one of the key factors that dictates how far ash will be dispersed,” said Charles Mandeville, volcano hazards co-ordinator for the U.S. Geological Survey. The other is where the winds are blowing. Such knowledge is useful in alerting the public.Scientists can also monitor where gas is emerging, as well as determine its composition and volume. They can even measure the subtle rise and fall of the ground over a broad area and time — down to seconds — which suggests when and where magma is pooling underground.Discovering variations or correlations between past and present activity provides more clues on what’s happening. It also helps scientists understand past lava flows, anticipate what could occur next, and pinpoint signs or patterns before an eruption.“You’re sort of zeroing in on finer and finer levels of detail into how the volcano works,” said Michael Poland, a U.S. Geological Survey volcanologist. “The more stuff you put on the volcano to make measurements, the more you realize there’s stuff going on that you never knew.”Better technology has also meant U.S. Geological Survey scientists have been able to accurately forecast Kilauea’s behaviour as it sputters over Puna, the island’s most affected district.“They’ve been spot on,” said Janine Krippner, a volcanologist at Concord University in West Virginia. “It’s incredible — they’re looking at things happening below the surface, using the monitoring equipment that they have, the knowledge they have of past eruptions, and have been able to get people to not be in a deadly area.”This is unfortunately not always possible, as nature can be unpredictable. On June 3, Guatemala’s Volcano of Fire sent a mixture of hot gas, rock and other material racing down its slopes and inundating the valley, killing nearly 100 people.Krippner compared the Guatemala eruption to opening a can of soda after shaking it vigorously. Volcanic gas underneath created bubbles that expanded, increasing pressure that blew magma apart when it reached the surface, spewing cooled lava rocks ranging from the size of sand grains to boulders.Explosions can be bigger, or occur differently, than expected, and that presents a learning opportunity for scientists, who work on computer models to map out areas that may be at higher risk in the future. “Looking at the footage afterward, we can start to tease out how these things actually work,” Krippner said, as it’s often too dangerous for experts to physically get close to an eruption.Volcanic eruptions happen fairly regularly — as many as 60 occur worldwide each year — but many are in isolated areas, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.After Kilauea’s 1924 summit explosions, the volcano entered a decade of piddly rumblings, followed by 18 years of silence. Experts say Kilauea may be heading toward years — even decades — of little or no activity.For now, volcanologists feel a “tremendous amount of responsibility” to learn as much as possible from the volcano, Poland said. Its latest activity has destroyed about 400 homes — including about 280 over the last several days — and displaced thousands of residents. Lava from Kilauea has also downed power lines and knifed across highways.“It’s coming at a great cost in terms of impact on the lives and livelihoods of so many people — we owe it to the people of Puna to make sure that we learn the lessons the volcano is teaching us,” Poland said.___Ritter reported from New York.___Follow AP’s complete coverage of the Hawaii volcano here: read more

Corporations market at World Cup despite absence of US

first_imgMOSCOW – Budweiser has a boat on the Moscow River and a disco. Coke set up an interactive sculpture-video installation in Gorky Park and entertained 5,000 guests during the monthlong tournament. Visa built a campaign around former Sweden star Zlatan Ibrahimovic.Business went on at the World Cup without the presence of the United States, although the tournament’s visibility decreased across America.“The absence of the U.S. team here doesn’t change what we’re doing,” said Ricardo Fort, The Coca-Cola Co.’s head of global sponsorships. “The real value is based on how broad our programs are implemented. We have over 180 countries doing work.”FIFA said after the group stage that of 2.6 million tickets sold, U.S. residents bought about 97,000 on FIFA’s website and from its ticketing centres, second only to host Russia’s 1.1 million. The U.S. was second to host Brazil in 2014, but the American total was around 200,000 that year.“We were all disappointed when the U.S. team didn’t qualify,” said Brian Perkins, vice-president of global marketing for Budweiser at Anheuser-Busch InBev. “But two-thirds of the sales of Budweiser globally are sold outside of the U.S., so actually the bigger part of the business is international, and that’s where all the growth is coming from as well. It really didn’t change much at all.”World Cup advertising increased sharply in the U.S. during the past few tournaments. Nike used a 70 1/2-foot advertising board near New York’s Penn Station and its store windows to attract attention.Plans for U.S. marketing changed last October when the U.S. lost at Trinidad and Tobago, ending a string of seven straight World Cup appearances dating to 1990.“Since Team USA will not be competing, we don’t have much going on,” Nike spokesman Ilana Finley said in an email.Past World Cups contributed to soccer’s growth in the U.S., both at Major League Soccer and at the youth level. The four matches involving the American team in 2014 were seen by 10 million to 18 million viewers on ESPN and generated what then-U.S. Soccer Federation President Sunil Gulati called “water-cooler talk.” That opportunity was lost in this four-year cycle.Fox, which holds U.S. English-language television rights, had been projecting four of 64 matches involving the American team.“We had to pivot quickly,” Fox Sports senior vice-president of ad sales Mike Petruzzi said.While viewers declined from the 2014 tournament in Brazil, the level is up from the 2010 World Cup in South Africa when the U.S. games are factored out.“You are naturally going to have more people paying attention back home when your country is in the tournament, but there has still been a ton of interest in the World Cup in the United States,” current USSF president Carlos Cordeiro said in an email. “That clearly shows how the game has grown over the years.”Visa is using the World Cup to expand the use of near field communication contactless payment technology and brought Ibrahimovic, now with MLS’s LA Galaxy, to Russia for the tournament’s first week for promotion.“Some of the biggest amount of spending that we’re seeing in Russia is coming from American fans who travel to Russia to see the World Cup in person,” said Chris Curtin, Visa’s chief brand and innovation marketing officer.Visa’s data backed up an impression the percentage of fans from Europe was lower than at past World Cups. Part of the cause may be tension between Russia and western European nations that followed Russia’s invasion of Crimea and military intervention in Ukraine, and accusations by Britain that Russia was behind the poisoning of a former spy living in England.Through the semifinals, $12 million was charged inside the stadiums to Visa cards issued to cardholders in Russia, followed by those issued in the U.S. ($3 million), Mexico ($1.5 million), China ($1.1 million), Argentina ($700,000), Peru ($560,000), England ($550,000), Brazil ($500,000), Colombia ($420,000) and Australia ($400,000).France was 13th at $230,000 heading into Sunday’s final against Croatia.FIFA has seven top-level partners in Adidas, Coca-Cola, Gazprom, Hyundai, Qatar Airways, Visa and Wanda Group, plus five second-level sponsors: Anheuser-Busch, Hisense, McDonald’s, Mengniu Dairy and Vivo.Hisense, Mengniu, Vivo and Wanda are all Chinese companies, a sign of that nation’s increasing influence in soccer despite the lack of success of its national team.Among the official FIFA group, Adidas, Anheuser-Busch, Coke and McDonald’s purchased about 20 per cent of Fox’s advertising inventory and sponsorships, and Hisense sponsored clock wraps, billboards and graphics, according to Petruzzi. They were joined by tech companies Amazon, Apple and Google.Coke, Sprint and Volkswagen advertised on U.S. Spanish-language coverage on NBC Universal’s Telemundo network.Four years from now, the World Cup will be in Qatar, which like Moscow will also be seven hours ahead of Eastern time. The change will be the timing, Nov. 21-Dec. 18, a tournament shortened from 32 days to 28.“Fourth quarter has got a lot of rating points already with college football, NFL, so it’s going to be very interesting how we approach it,” Petruzzi said. “The holiday stuff will be great, but I also get cautious about fourth quarter because there’s so many rating points out there.”___More AP World Cup coverage: read more

Trump proposes carmileage rollback states sue in protest

first_imgWASHINGTON – Citing safety, the Trump administration on Thursday proposed rolling back car-mileage standards, backing away from years of government efforts to cut Americans’ trips to the gas station and reduce unhealthy, climate-changing tailpipe emissions.If the proposed rule becomes final, it could roil the auto industry as it prepares for new model years and weaken one of the federal government’s chief weapons against climate change — regulating emissions from cars and other vehicles. The result, opponents say, will be dirtier air and more pollution-related illness and death.The proposal itself estimates it could cost tens of thousands of jobs — auto workers who deal with making vehicles more fuel efficient.The administration also said it wants to revoke an authority granted to California under the half-century-old Clean Air Act to set its own, tougher mileage standards. California and 16 other states already have filed suit to block any change in the fuel efficiency rules.“The EPA has handed decision making over to the fossil fuel lobbyists … the flat-Earthers, the climate change deniers,” said Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey.The proposal would freeze U.S. mileage standards at levels mandated by the Obama administration for 2020, when the new vehicle fleet will be required to hit an average of 30 miles per gallon in real-world driving.The proposed change, halting further improvement requirements, stakes its case on consumer choice and on highway safety claims challenged by many transportation experts.The administration says waiving requirements for greater fuel efficiency would make cars and light trucks somewhat more affordable. And that, it said, would get vehicles with the latest technology into the hands of consumers more quickly.It’s got “everything to do with just trying to turn over the fleet … and get more clean and safe cars on the road,” said Bill Wehrum, assistant administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.The administration will now seek public comment on its proposal and a range of other options, including leaving the tighter, Obama fuel standards in place.Some Republican lawmakers supported the mileage freeze, but environmental groups and many states assailed it.“This has to be absolutely one of the most harmful and dumbest actions that the EPA has taken,” said Healey of Massachusetts, one of the attorneys general from 19 states and the District of Columbia objecting to the change. “It’s going to cost drivers here and across the country hundreds of millions of dollars more at the pump.”The EPA under President Barack Obama had proposed mileage standards that gradually would become tougher, rising to 36 miles per gallon in 2025, 10 mpg higher than the current requirement. California and the automakers agreed to the rules in 2012, setting a single national fuel economy standard.Soon after taking office, President Donald Trump called for a rollback, urging “common sense changes” if the mileage requirements threatened auto industry jobs.However, his administration’s report on Thursday projects that relaxing mileage standards would cost 60,000 auto jobs by 2030. Those losses would hit the estimated 200,000 U.S. jobs that deal with making vehicles more fuel efficient, said Simon Mui of the Natural Resources Defence Council.A Transportation Department spokesperson called the estimate of job losses “rough approximations.”Two former EPA mileage officials said the administration’s proposal departed from years of findings on fuel efficiency, car safety, exhaust emissions and costs.“They don’t offer any meaningful example of what has changed so dramatically” to warrant the reversal, said Jeff Alson, who until this spring was a senior engineer in the EPA’s transportation and air quality office. “In my opinion the only way they got there was, they knew what kind of results they were told to get and they cooked the books to get that result.”Chet France, an EPA senior executive until his retirement in 2012, called the administration’s contention that the mileage freeze would cause only a tiny increase in climate-changing exhaust emissions “bogus.”California Gov. Jerry Brown said his state “will fight this stupidity in every conceivable way possible.”The Obama administration had planned to keep toughening fuel requirements through 2026, saying those and other regulations on vehicles would save 40,000 lives annually through cleaner air. That argument remained on the EPA’s website Thursday.According to Trump administration estimates, the Obama fuel efficiency standards would raise the price of vehicles by an average of $2,340. That would price many buyers out of the new-vehicle market, forcing them to drive older, less-safe vehicles that pollute more, the administration says.Heidi King, deputy administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said the freeze would reduce highway deaths by 1,000 per year “by reducing these barriers that prevent consumers from getting into the newer, safer, cleaner, more fuel-efficient cars.”But private transportation experts say there are so many factors involved that the 1,000-lives figure is questionable. The affordability argument also ignores thousands of dollars of saving in fuel costs for each driver over the life of a car, opponents of the rollbacks said.Longstanding federal legislation has allowed California to set its own mileage standards given the choking smog that still sometimes blankets Los Angeles and other central and Southern California valley cities.More than a dozen states follow California’s standards, amounting to about 40 per cent of the country’s new-vehicle market.A drawn-out legal battle over the standards could hurt the auto industry as it tries to plan for coming model years.The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, a main industry group, sought to stave off any dispute between California and the federal government that could split the U.S. car market: “We urge California and the federal government to find a common sense solution that sets continued increases in vehicle efficiency standards while also meeting the needs of American drivers.”In 2012, when the standards were first adopted, cars were about 50 per cent of new-vehicle sales. Now they’re only about one-third, with less-efficient trucks and SUVS making up the rest.___Tom Krisher reported from Detroit. Don Thompson contributed from Sacramento.last_img read more

Lumentum SAP fall Coty Athenahealth rise

first_imgNEW YORK — Stocks that moved substantially or traded heavily Monday:Coty Inc., up 16 cents to $8.65The struggling cosmetics company named a new CEO and chairman.Athenahealth Inc., up $11.62 to $131.97The struggling medical billing software maker received a $5.7 billion cash buyout offer.Lumentum Holdings Inc., down $18.45 to $37.50Wells Fargo analysts said Apple is the unnamed customer that optical communications company Lumentum said was significantly reducing orders.British American Tobacco PLC, down $3.67 cents to $38.08The maker of Newport cigarettes fell following reports that U.S. regulators are considering a ban on menthol tobacco.SAP SE, down $6.89 to $101.42The German company agreed to pay $8 billion for survey-software provider Qualtrics International.Apptio Inc., up $12.80 to $37.65The business software company agreed to be acquired by Vista Equity Partners for $38 a share in cash.AECOM, down $1.74 to $30.98The engineering and construction company reported quarterly results and an outlook that disappointed investors.Nuance Communications Inc., down 64 cents to $16.85The software company agreed to sell its document imaging division for $400 million.The Associated Presslast_img read more

There will be Christmas Laid off call centre workers eager to return

first_imgSYDNEY, N.S. — Hundreds of Cape Breton call centre workers laid off just weeks before Christmas may now have jobs to return to in the new year.“There will be Christmas — there is some hope here,” said Michelle Hillier, who worked at ServiCom Canada for five years before being forced on the unemployment line earlier this month along with more than 600 colleagues.“If the jobs are there, I’m walking right back through the doors again.”The reopening of the call centre would be a significant gain for the economy of Cape Breton, a region that struggles with perennially high unemployment.An Iowa-based businessman offered $1.5-million for the idled call centre during an auction this week that was part of bankruptcy proceedings in the United States.The Sydney, N.S., operation was abruptly closed Dec. 6 after ServiCom’s U.S. parent, JNET Communications, filed for bankruptcy protection.Anthony Marlowe of Marlowe Companies Inc. (MCI) outbid two other interested buyers and was expected to travel to the region and meet with workers Thursday.“I was thrilled to find out that somebody is buying it and we could all have our jobs back,” said Chauncey Sullivan, who worked at the call centre for almost three years.“It was such a huge loss for a small community.”She said the mass layoff was “heartbreaking” but that “Capers” — or Cape Bretoners — have pulled together to support the workers.The community has banded together to raise money for the laid off workers, with donations flooding in and the Salvation Army providing food and payments for home heating oil and electricity bills.  Most of the workers were owed about four weeks in back pay when the call centre abruptly shuttered, a liability MCI Canada said rests with ServiCom.Justin Boutilier, who worked at the call centre for more than a decade, said while it’s great for the community and the regional economy to see the call centre reopen — there’s a “flip side.” “A lot of people are owed thousands of dollars … it leaves a little bit of a sour taste,” he said.Boutilier said some laid off workers who have qualified for employment insurance may go back to school or pursue training rather than return to the call centre.Brett Murphy, who worked at the call centre for two years, said the laid off workers are struggling to pay bills.“If this happened in July, it would be a little bit easier, but people are hurting this close to Christmas,” he said. “It’s great to know that hundreds of people will get their jobs back, we just need to get through this time.”In a statement Tuesday, MCI Canada said the call centre will reopen as early as Jan. 2, 2019 under a new name: The Sydney Call Centre Inc. The company also confirmed that MCI will enter a nine-year lease for the shuttered facility.Marlowe said it was clear that the bankruptcy proceedings in the United States were unlikely to produce any money for the workers. He said his company would offer sign-on and retention bonuses, but no figures were mentioned.“We hope that this will help lessen some of the financial impacts of the closing,” he said in a statement.Marlowe’s company was in the process of buying the call centre’s assets when it was shut down by the bankruptcy proceedings.He said his company will provide new and ongoing employment for the Sydney area. Again, no numbers were mentioned.“We are in a unique position to be able to quickly bring jobs back to Sydney, provide a valuable service to customers and add talented employees and capacity to the MCI portfolio,” Marlowe said.“Expanding into a new country in less than 30 days is a big undertaking, but we have a great team and technology in place to get it done … We have every confidence that the team in Sydney will further fuel our organization’s success.”The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Beer makers thirsty for growth push into cannabis market

first_imgNEW YORK — The makers of Budweiser, Coors and other large-scale brewers are placing their bets on cannabis as a way to fight saturated markets and shifting consumer trends.For years, the industry’s largest players have struggled with stagnating markets and shifting consumer tastes. Anheuser-Busch InBev, Molson Coors and Corona brewer Constellation Brands have responded by buying up fast-growing craft brews. Anheuser-Busch’s 2011 purchase of Chicago’s Goose Island is one of the most emblematic examples of this strategy, which has helped big brewers maintain revenue and profit steady. But concerns over growth continue to hang over the industry.The craft beer segment of the industry has slowed considerably since 2016, however, according to trade association The Beer Institute.“This seems to be running out of steam now,” said Spiros Malandrakis, head of alcoholic drinks at market research provider Euromonitor International.While the same macroeconomic issues of saturated markets and consumers constantly looking for something new remain, the industry may have to contend with escalating trade issues and a market downturn that could cut into consumer spending.The larger players are fighting back by pushing into the cannabis industry as a potential engine for future growth. Anheuser-Busch said in December it would partner with medicinal cannabis maker Tilray Inc. to develop non-alcoholic drinks containing cannabis.Constellation raised its stake in Canadian cannabis maker Canopy Growth to 38 per cent from 9 per cent in 2018. Molson Coors holds a 59 per cent stake in cannabis producer Hydropothecary.“This is the area that I would expect the most interesting development to happen,” Malandrakis said. “Cannabis could be the big disruptor.”Constellation, in its latest conference call with investors, said the “emerging cannabis space represents one of the most significant global growth opportunities of the next decade and frankly our life time.”The new strategy is not without risks, however. Constellation shares recently took a dive, seemingly over concerns centring around its cannabis investment. Wall Street is cautious about the potential return on those investments, considering the legal hurdles that still need to be cleared in key markets, including the U.S.Investors should soon get some insight into how several of these brewers’ cannabis plans are faring. Molson Coors reports its fourth-quarter results Feb. 12 and Anheuser-Bush reports results Feb. 28.Damian J. Troise, The Associated Presslast_img read more