Stars Attend 2017 UNICEF Snowflake Ball

first_imgOn November 28, UNICEF USA hosted the 13th annual UNICEF Snowflake Ball at Cipriani Wall Street, celebrating UNICEF’s lifesaving work for children around the world and honoring L’Oreal’s Carol Hamilton and Special Olympic gold medallist Lucy Meyer.Host Harry Connick Jr. speaks on stage during 13th Annual UNICEF Snowflake Ball 201Credit/Copyright: Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for UNICEFPresented by Mariner Investment Group, the black-tie event raised $3.7 million for UNICEF’s work to put children first, contributing to a total of $34 million raised since the inaugural event in 2005. Hosted by Emmy and Grammy Award winning and Tony Award nominated musician, actor and television host Harry Connick Jr., the evening featured a special performance by Grammy Award winning artist Diana Ross and a live auction hosted by Kate Chertavian.Jake Gyllenhaal attends 13th Annual UNICEF Snowflake Ball 2017Credit/Copyright: Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for UNICEFGuests included Jake Gyllenhaal, Anna Wintour, Governor Andrew Cuomo, Dikembe Mutombo, Sandra Lee, David Villa, Jessica Nowitzki, Dayle Haddon, among others.Governor Andrew Cuomo spoke about the partnership between UNICEF USA, UPS and his Empire State Relief and Recovery Effort for Puerto Rico, following the devastation caused by the hurricane earlier this year. To mark the festivities, Governor Cuomo, together with five UPS drivers who delivered vital supplies, lit the UNICEF Snowflake, which hangs each year at the intersection of 57th Street and Fifth Avenue as a beacon of hope, peace and compassion for vulnerable children around the world.Group President, L’Oréal Luxe USA and philanthropist Carol J. Hamilton received the Spirit of Compassion Award for her dedicated commitment to make the world a better place for children. Carol serves on UNICEF USA’s National Board, as well as the New York Regional Board. As a longtime supporter of UNICEF’s lifesaving work, she spearheaded L’Oréal’s Giorgio Armani Acqua for Life partnership with UNICEF, which is now in its 8th year.“I am truly humbled by this honor. More than any other honor I have received,” said Carol Hamilton. “UNICEF is not only providing aid in emergencies or providing developing nations with the programs they need for children to live healthier lives. UNICEF has become the world’s thought leader on the state of children everywhere, working tirelessly to understand what it will take to give every child the right to a brighter future.”Jake Gyllenhaal presented the Helenka Pantaleoni Humanitarian Award to Special Olympic gold medallist Lucy Meyer for her work to ensure that every child has opportunities to play and learn. In her role as Spokesperson for the Special Olympics – UNICEF USA Partnership and UNICEF USA Spokesperson for Children with Disabilities, Lucy has traveled around the United States and to several countries to bring attention to UNICEF’s work to advance the rights of children with disabilities.“UNICEF has given me the amazing opportunity to speak and bond with children with and without disabilities in other countries. The 93 million children with disabilities around the world are often the most marginalized of their society. We need to help them by raising awareness, encouraging inclusion, and providing assistance,” said Lucy Meyer. “I am proud to share this award with all of the amazing members of the UNICEF team, who do amazing work every single day.”Desiree Gruber, Elizabeth Smith, and Marjolein Steenbergen chaired this year’s UNICEF Snowflake Ball, with Jaime Jiménez serving as Project Chair and Sterling McDavid and Daria Daniel as NextGen chairs. UNICEF Ambassador Vern Yip designed the décor for the event, and guests dined on a custom menu designed by chef and UNICEF Ambassador Marcus Samuelsson. A live auction hosted by Kate Chertavian featured VIP packages including a Paris Fashion Week package, an Oscars experience and an Asian Oasis vacation package. The production was made possible by Scott Mauro Entertainment.For more information about the 2017 UNICEF Snowflake Ball, visit www.unicefsnowflake.org.last_img read more

United Nations HeForShe IMPACT Summit To Take Place At UN General Assembly

first_imgOn September 26th, the United Nations HeForShe movement is convening world leaders, global CEOs, activists and celebrities to introduce groundbreaking solutions to achieve gender equality around the world.Her Majesty Queen Rania, Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Award-winning Actress and UN Women’s Global Goodwill Ambassador, Anne Hathaway, and Actor and Activist, Winston Duke are set to issue a global call to action for gender equality during the Summit. Musical Artist MILCK is also scheduled to perform.Leading up to the Summit, Actor and HeForShe Advocate Mark Consuelos is launching the #MorePowerfulTogether campaign featuring major landmarks globally including the Empire State Building and CN Tower, Toronto. These buildings will turn off half of their lights on the evening of September 24th – creating a visual metaphor that illustrates the power lost when the world excludes half its population – women – from society, economies and communities. For full list of participating buildings, click here.Created by UN Women in 2014, the HeForShe solidarity movement has so far mobilized 1.7 million men as advocates for gender equality, generating more than 1.3 billion conversations on social media.WHERE: Cipriani 42nd Street, 110 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017WHEN: Sept 26th | 10:00 A.M– 12:00 P.M. ETlast_img read more

THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW CROWNS A WINNER IN THE SEASON 2

first_img Facebook If the choux fits… Andrei Godoroja, 58, a software engineering consultant from Vancouver, B.C., won THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW title and trophy on tonight’s finale, while Leduc, Alberta’s Megan Stasiewich and Halifax, Nova Scotia’s Sachin Seth gave their best efforts but came up short in the final showdown. The finale saw the three bakers create two dozen mini Swiss rolls for the Signature Bake, whip up princess cakes for the Technical Bake, and build breathtaking choux pastry sculptures for the Show Stopper, judged by acclaimed pastry chefs Rochelle Adonis and Bruno Feldeisen.“It was a privilege to be in the finale alongside bakers as talented as Megan and Sachin, and an honour beyond my wildest dreams to have been selected the winner by Bruno and Rochelle,” said Godoroja. “I came into the tent on the first day hoping that I wouldn’t be the first to be sent home and wondering if my goal of making it to the finale was realistic. I have so appreciated the encouragement I received from viewers and hope that some may be inspired by my journey to push themselves and achieve things they thought were beyond their capabilities.”Godoroja was named Star Baker twice throughout the course of Season 2, during Cake Week and Pastry Week.  Memorable bakes include a checkerboard cake for Cake Week, a dark chocolate cookie piano for Biscuits and Bars Week, and a strawberry slab pie and basket of pastries for Pastry Week.  His chocolate passionfruit tart during Chocolate Week, and coffee and maple crepe cake in the semifinal, wowed the judges and earned him a spot in the finale. Godoroja first learned to bake by watching his grandmother, and has previously had careers in opera singing and astronomy – he can now add the Great Canadian Baking Show title to his extensive resumé.Fans can relive the delicious drama of THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW Seasons 1 and 2 anytime on the CBC TV streaming app and cbc.ca/watch.THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW brings together 10 amateur bakers from across the country to compete in a series of themed culinary challenges that celebrate their diverse backgrounds, families and communities. Each of the eight one-hour episodes features three rounds: the Signature Bake, the Technical Bake and the Show Stopper. After the baked goods are tasted and critiqued, the judges decide the week’s Star Baker, and who will be sent home, with the final three bakers competing for the Great Canadian Baking Show title.THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW is produced by Proper Television in association with CBC and Love Productions. The executive producers are Lesia Capone and Cathie James, and the series producer is Marike Emery. For CBC, Sally Catto is General Manager, Programming; Jennifer Dettman is Executive Director, Unscripted Content; and Susan Taylor is Executive in Charge of Production. The format is owned by Love Productions and distributed by Sky Vision. In addition to the original British series, the format has been produced in 23 territories including America, Australia, France and Ireland. THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW is presented with Robin Hood. The Robin Hood Baking Family consists of a portfolio of leading baking brands.Follow THE GREAT CANADIAN BAKING SHOW online:Website: cbc.ca/life/greatcanadianbakingshowHashtag: #GCBS or #canadianbakingshowTwitter: @CBCBakingShowFacebook: facebook.com/GreatCanadianBakingShowCBC/Instagram: instagram.com/cbcbakingshow/.About CBC/Radio-CanadaCBC/Radio-Canada is Canada’s national public broadcaster. Through our mandate to inform, enlighten and entertain, we play a central role in strengthening Canadian culture. As Canada’s trusted news source, we offer a uniquely Canadian perspective on news, current affairs and world affairs. Our distinctively homegrown entertainment programming draws audiences from across the country. Deeply rooted in communities, CBC/Radio-Canada offers diverse content in English, French and eight Indigenous languages. We are leading the transformation to meet the needs of Canadians in a digital world. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Advertisement Login/Register With: Twitter Advertisementlast_img read more

TIFFS CANADAS TOP TEN LIST SKEWS A LOT YOUNGER THIS YEAR

first_imgArlen Aguayo Stewart rides away with Katherine Jerkovic’s Roads In February. Both of the Canadian features that won prizes at TIFF made the cut – Katherine Jerkovic’s generational drama Roads In February, which won the $15,000 City of Toronto award for best Canadian first feature, and Sébastian Pilote’s restless-teen study The Fireflies Are Gone, which took the $30,000 Canada Goose award for best Canadian feature film. But that’s just the start.Jasmin Mozaffari’s Firecrackers, a drama expanded by the filmmaker from her 2013 short, Philippe Lesage’s ambitious, exploratory Genesis and Keith Behrman’s sexually charged teen study Giant Little Ones are all occupied with themes of young people finding themselves – as is Patricia Rozema’s tricky adaptation of Amy Nostbakken and Norah Sadava’s theatrical drama Mouthpiece, though that film is a very different animal. And Christy Garland’s documentary What Walaa Wants follows a young woman forging her own path as a cadet in the Palestinian Police Academy after her mother’s release from an Israeli jail.A case could even be made to include Freaks in this thematic umbrella, as Vancouver filmmakers Zach Lipovsky and Adam Stein’s first theatrical feature is built around a little girl (Lexy Kolker) with an overprotective father (Emile Hirsch) who won’t let her leave the house. There’s obviously a lot more to it than that – the film starts as a weird cousin to Terry Gilliam’s Tideland and quickly mutates into a riff on Noah Hawley’s FX series Legion. I would never have expected to see this movie make the Top Ten – seriously, the last honouree this weird was Vincenzo Natali’s Splice in 2009 – and its presence is a surprise, to say the least.It might also indicate the influence of external film critics’ associations. TIFF’s internal programming team consulted both the Vancouver Film Critics Circle and Association Québécoise Des Critiques de Cinéma in compiling this year’s list. (The Toronto Film Critics Association – of which I am a member – was also contacted, but declined to participate.)Gwaai Edenshaw and Helen Haig-Brown’s Indigenous thriller Edge Of The Knife, the first feature produced in the endangered Haida language, and Anthropocene: The Human Epoch, Jennifer Baichwal, Nicholas de Pencier and Edward Burtynsky’s latest chapter in the decade-long documentary project following Manufactured Landscapes and Watermark, round out the list.And if this was a year for new faces and a youthful focus, that meant Canada’s old guard was mostly on the outside. Other than Rozema and Baichwal, filmmakers who might have once been able to make TIFF’s Top Ten just by showing up were conspicuously absent.It’s perhaps no surprise that Xavier Dolan’s long-awaited English-language drama The Death And Life Of John F. Donovan, didn’t make the list; it cratered spectacularly at TIFF, no matter how fervently Dolan’s boosters insist otherwise. Denys Arcand’s The Fall Of The American Empire, the wheezy final entry in the film cycle Arcand started three decades ago with The Decline Of The American Empire, similarly failed to garner any critical or public support, slipping into the same vaguely recalled limbo that swallowed up Days Of Darkness.Also absent: Maxime Giroux’s ambitious historical allegory The Great Darkened Days, a follow-up to his critically beloved Félix & Meira; Don McKellar’s film based on Joseph Boyden’s controversial novel Through Black Spruce; Thom Fitzgerald’s adaptation of Lee-Anne Poole’s stage play Splinters; and Sharkwater: Extinction, a documentary completed after credited director Rob Stewart died during its production.I was a little more surprised to see Darlene Naponse’s Falls Around Her and Igor Drljaca’s The Stone Speakers fail to make the list; the former showcases Tantoo Cardinal in a knockout performance as an Anishinaabe musician returning home to Northern Ontario, and the latter is an intriguing documentary that finds the filmmaker examining his Bosnian-Canadian heritage through the prism of cultural tourism.Neither film is perfect, but they’re excellent examples of idiosyncratic Canadian cinema from gifted storytellers; I was sure they’d be catnip to TIFF’s selection committee. But I’m pretty happy with the titles they chose – especially Roads In February, which is exactly the sort of tiny, lovely little discovery so often overlooked when this list is compiled.Still no comedies, though. Maybe they’ll get to that next year.BY NORMAN WILNER | NOW TORONTO Facebook Advertisement Whether it’s just coincidence or by design, there’s a definite sense of the guard changing in TIFF’s announcement of this year’s Canada’s Top Ten.In addition to the lack of a January showcase for the honourees – as announced last month, this year’s winning films will be given theatrical runs at the TIFF Bell Lightbox over the course of 2019 instead – the 2018 features list is more eclectic than most, embracing genre and experimental works while leaving off certain favourite sons of Canadian cinema.Seven of this year’s anointed features – six dramas and a documentary – focus on young people figuring themselves out. 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Man living in tent fears dropin centre closure

first_imgAPTN National NewsA Yukon First Nations man has been living in a tent for the last six months in Whitehorse.George Stewart depends on a city drop-in centre for survivors of residential schools.APTN National News reporter Shirley McLean has Stewart’s story.last_img

Youth filmmakers talk to survivors in Halifax

first_imgAPTN National NewsYoung filmmakers were at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission hearings in Halifax, to try and understand what happened at residential schools, why their parents and grandparents won’t talk about it, and to document the stories pouring forth.APTN National News reporter Taryn Della spoke with the camera-wielding youth, and has their story.last_img

Saskatchewan minister says new FN education money not enough

first_imgAPTN National NewsSaskatchewan’s education minister, Donna Harpauer, is joining several First Nations leaders in the province in saying that the new money promised for First Nations education money is not enough.“We need to ensure and keep the pressure on the federal government,” says Harpauer. “We have an economy that’s growing and we need our First Nations students to graduate and to engage in our economy.”APTN National News reporter Delaney Windigo has the story.last_img

Where have all the people been over all the years our women

first_imgAPTN National NewsAPTN National News host Cheryl McKenzie was at a vigil in Winnipeg held in support of the victims of alleged serial killer Shawn Lamb.McKenzie spoke with some of the people there to find out what people are thinking and saying about a case that has brought a lot of pain to the community.last_img

Audit firm wants MKO Grand Chief Harper to step aside poses threat

first_imgjbarrera@aptn.ca@JorgeBarrera By Jorge Barrera APTN National NewsForensic auditors investigating a northern Manitoba First Nation organization want its grand chief to step aside because he could “pose a threat” to  their probe, according to a letter obtained by APTN National News.Chiefs on Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak’s (MKO) executive committee requested Winnipeg firm Lazer Grant conduct a forensic audit of all the organization’s books citing concerns over Grand Chief David Harper’s financial management.MKO is facing a nearly million dollar deficit and Harper has been accused of trying to obstruct the audit. Harper is also accused of spending MKO funds on personal expenses, including for car repairs, three guitars and plane tickets for his girlfriend.The organization represents 30 northern Manitoba communities and many are among the poorest in the country.In a letter to Kelvin Lynxleg, MKO’s interim executive director, Lazer Grant requested Harper turn over his laptop, cell phone and any other MKO-owned electronic devices. The firm said Harper should be put on a “non-functioning paid leave-of absence” until the forensic probe ends. The firm recommended Harper be banned from entering MKO’s premises, accessing the organization’s accounting information and communicating with suppliers and vendors.Lazer Grant recommended Harper take a leave of absence because he posed a threat to the forensic audit, which had been hampered in the past by former staff members who turned over tampered electronic devices like their cell phones and laptops.“We recommend that MKO determine any other individuals that are perceived to pose a threat to the ongoing investigation,” said the letter signed by David Glass, a partner with Lazer Grant, and dated Tuesday.Lazer Grant recommended Harper also cease talking to the media.MKO and Harper could not be reached for comment Tuesday. Based on Harper’s recent statements, it remains unclear whether he would be compliant with any such requests.Harper conducted several media interviews last week to state he would ignore a resolution passed by chiefs at an MKO meeting in Norway House requesting he take a voluntary leave until the audit ended.The resolution, which was passed last Wednesday, demanded Harper take the voluntary leave or face a non-confidence vote at the next MKO meeting in September.In an interview with APTN National News, Harper said he did nothing wrong and expressed confidence he would be cleared.Harper, who has been accused of obstructing the forensic audit in the past, denied he ever tried to interfere with investigators.The forensic audit was originally launched last August to initially probe the contracts of a former director of finance who was paid $1.1 million between 2005 and 2011. Since then, chiefs on MKO’s executive council pushed to expand the forensic audit to include all the organization’s books, including those of its subsidiaries.Documents obtained by APTN National News show MKO was warned by an outside auditor the federal Aboriginal Affairs department could put the organization into co-management or third –party management if it didn’t get its spending under control, especially around travel and consultants.MKO’s accumulated deficit for the fiscal year ending on March 31, 2013, hit $976, 025. MKO also accumulated an operating deficit of $609,058 by March 31, 2013, which was a 71 per cent increase over the previous year’s operating deficit of $356,108.MKO, which received a denial of opinion from an auditor because it lacked proper accounting of its spending, was also warned to include a paper trail around its credit card use.Documents show that Harper used the organization’s money to pay for three guitars, car repairs, flights for his girlfriend and for members of a U.S.-based gospel music group to attend a jamboree, according to Visa statements and invoices obtained by APTN National News.Harper said the guitars were a Christmas gift to someone and that the car repairs and flights for his girlfriend came out of his pay.Harper has also faced criticism over his plan to sell clan memberships to sponsors as a way to raise money for the AFN election which MKO is hosting in Winnipeg this December.last_img read more

Ski resort a step closer after high court ruling in Grizzly Bear

first_imgThe Canadian PressOTTAWA –Approval of a ski resort in a region held sacred by Indigenous people does not violate their constitutional right to freedom of religion, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled Thursday.The high court decision means the proposed resort development in southeastern British Columbia is a step closer to reality.The Ktunaxa Nation consider the land at the foot of Jumbo Mountain to be sacred and say construction of the resort would drive away Grizzly Bear Spirit, a principal figure of their religious beliefs, from an area known as Qat’muk.They argued that charter of rights protections for freedom of religion must include not only spiritual beliefs, but also underlying sacred sites _ in this case the presence of Grizzly Bear Spirit in Qat’muk.The Supreme Court ruled that religious protections under the charter do not extend that far, covering only the freedom to hold such beliefs and the right to manifest them through worship and teaching.“In short, the charter protects the freedom to worship, but does not protect the spiritual focal point of worship,” a majority of the court ruled.The Supreme Court also found the B.C. minister of forests, lands and natural resource operations “did not act unreasonably” in deciding the constitutional obligation to consult the Ktunaxa about their concerns had been met.“We arrive at these conclusions cognizant of the importance of protecting Indigenous religious beliefs and practices and the place of such protection in achieving reconciliation between Indigenous Peoples and non-Indigenous communities,” the reasons for judgment said.The ruling stems from a suit filed by the Ktunaxa after Glacier Resorts received B.C. government approval to proceed with the project.The company plans to build a year-round ski resort with lifts to glacier runs and overnight accommodation for guests and staff.For more than two decades, Glacier has been negotiating with the provincial government and interested parties, including the Ktunaxa and Shuswap peoples living in the Jumbo Valley.Early in the process, the Indigenous groups raised concerns about the development. Consultations led to significant changes in the proposal, satisfying the Shuswap people.The Ktunaxa continued to have concerns and after lengthy discussions it appeared there would be an agreement. But late in the process they took the position the planned resort would make Grizzly Bear Spirit flee.After renewed efforts to revive the talks, the government declared that reasonable consultation had taken place and approved the project.The Ktunaxa were unsuccessful in trying to overturn the decision in the B.C. courts, prompting the appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada.last_img read more

Indigenous leaders supporting Calgarys bid to bring back the Olympics

first_imgTamara PimentelAPTN NewsSome Indigenous leaders say bringing the Olympics back to Calgary will benefit urban Indigenous youth and First Nation communities.The city is trying to find support to bring back the Olympic Games – something it hasn’t done since 1988.Calgary is making a bid for the 2026 games.tpimentel@aptn.ca@tamara_aptnlast_img

We cannot have Canadas commitment die on the order paper MPs hear

first_imgJeffry Nilles as he prepares to tell the committee about being taken from his parents when he was young and how that shaped his life. Photo: Mark Blackburn/APTNMark BlackburnAPTN NewsIt took Jeffry Nilles a long time to come to grips with who he is and where he came from after escaping the child welfare system.The Ojibway man says he was taken from his parents when he was young.“I’ll start by telling you about my first memories before being put in foster care – my first memories is my puppy Skippy. My earliest memories are of my grandfather at bedtime when he would tell me stories about Nanabush to me and my sister.“I also remember getting my first stitches after falling off my bike – and sadly I remember my parents drinking and fighting.”Nilles lived in Winnipeg but his mother was from the Waterhen First Nation in Manitoba.“One day my teacher came to our house and we were taken away… seeing my sisters crying for my mum, I was six years old that year and spent over 45 years trying to forget my stay in foster care.”(“Nilles just after speaking to MPs on the Indigenous Affairs committee about his life in and after foster care. Photo: Mark Blackburn/APTN)He only started speaking of his time in foster care last year at a men’s healing circle.“Some of my first memories is being yelled at by a lady, I think it was because I wouldn’t stop crying,” he said. “I remember wanting my mum – I was put in a corner and told to get on my knees and face the wall and was told to stay there until I stopped crying.”On Thursday, Nilles addressed the MPs of the House of Commons’ Indigenous affairs committee.They’re examining the federal government’s Bill C-92 – the Act respecting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth and families.It’s a law that could potentially stop what Nilles, and tens of thousands of children today are going through.The Indigenous child welfare system is so broken, that nearly everyone who has spoken on the proposed law supports it even though it is missing some key elements.(“We cannot have Canada’s commitments die on the order paper,” says Ed John. Photo: Mark Blackburn/APTN)Many also say it needs to pass before parliament rises in June so that it becomes law before the next federal election.On Thursday, the committee sat for five hours and heard from 21 witnesses.Grand Chief Ed John was one of them.He’s with the First Nations Summit in British Columbia and also chairs a committee that advises the minister of Indigenous Services on child welfare.“Bill C-92, together with Bill C-91, the Indigenous languages law, provides a substantive framework to remedy past government pillars to kill the Indian in the child by removing the child from family, siblings, community foods, lands and territories,” he said.John recommended that the act be strengthened to add that no child can be taken from the home or community because of poverty, and that money be guaranteed in the legislation.Neither of those are sure things.According to the Assembly of First Nations (AFN), there are 40,000 children in care of the state today.AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde said the situation is too dire to keep the status quo, and that Canada can’t make the mistakes of the past.“It’s not a challenge that will be met by federal, provincial and territorial governments continuing to impose their jurisdiction over our children while ignoring the inherent rights of First Nations peoples.”Given the state of child welfare in every province and territory, there is a desperate need for change.The Nishnawbe Aski Nation is supporting the bill, but Bobby Narcisse, director of social services for Nishnawbe Aski Nation – an organization representing 49 communities in northern Ontario – said there needs to be additions to it.“We advocate that that this bill guarantees adequate, sustainable, equitable funding for First Nations to enable the exercise of the inherent jurisdiction in the area of child and family wellbeing,” said Narcisse.But in Manitoba, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) has been fighting against the bill at every turn.(AMC Grand Chief Arlen Dumas gets set to speak before the Indigenous Affairs committee Thursday. Photo: Mark Blackburn/APTN)Manitoba has a crushing problem with its child welfare system with 11,000 Indigenous children in care.Grand Chief Arlen Dumus told the committee he doubts the Liberal government can pass this legislation and make it work.“At this time this government is having trouble getting provinces to sign on to a carbon tax that is a federal law,” Dumas said.There are also concerns in Manitoba about how easily the province will give up control over the child and family services system.“I’m no lawyer but I’m sure you’ve heard of the not-withstanding clause, of divisions of power, and there are all those arguments and all that rhetoric that is going to happen.”If the bill passes, Indigenous nations and communities would be able to enter into negotiations with the federal and provincial or territorial governments to work out a plan for the transfer of jurisdiction of child and family services.If no agreement is reached after 12 months, and if “reasonable efforts were made to reach an agreement, the laws of the Indigenous group and community would have force of law as federal law and would prevail over federal and provincial laws,” according to a government document given to media last February.Dumas said First Nation communities have been struggling with the province that is not, in his view, working with them to fix the system – instead making arbitrary changes without consultations.Cora Morgan, a First Nations family advocate, agrees.She said she doesn’t trust the province to hand over power to First Nations and doesn’t believe this bill will make it happen.“Right now the province provides 60 per cent of the $546 million for the budget, the feds only come in with that 40 per cent and so I’m wondering, is the funding model going to be changed completely and is there going to be a need for the province to pony up dollars to make this fly? And if that is going to hold things up, then we’re never going to have Bill C-92.(Liberal MP Robert-Falcon Ouellette and Cora Morgan after her presentation to the Indigenous Affairs Committee. Photo: Mark Blackburn/APTN)Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, director of the Indian Residential School Centre for History and Dialogue, says like most pieces of legislation, C-92 is a work in progress.“I see this as kind of like a framework, it’s the framing of a house,” she said. “There will need to be regulations, and it discusses regulations being discussed in collaboration with Indigenous people; that alone is an innovation, that’s a very important innovation. So whether it’s chiefs in Manitoba — they want their own welfare law their way… it’s important to recognize that they can do that.”It’s also not clear how provinces will react to Bill C-92.Ontario’s Child and Family Services Minister Lisa McLeod also addressed the committee.She said she wished Canada had done more consulting.“I can say that my colleagues across the country weren’t properly consulted…. I don’t think they’ve been heard. But I wish the government great success,” she said.“I get there are constitutional issues, I get there are jurisdictions. I wrote a thesis on the constitution, but I’m thinking there’s also that seven-year-old child who doesn’t have a parent.”The committee is running out of time.At Thursday’s hearing, NDP MP Rachel Blaney asked for an extension of four hours to hear from witnesses who didn’t have a chance to speak on the issue.If that is voted down by Liberals on the committee, it will go through the bill clause by clause, then a vote will happen.The committee went behind closed doors to vote. The results will not be immediately made public.John left them with a message in the meantime: pass the legislation.“We cannot have Canada’s commitments die on the order paper, we’ve been through that before.”Meanwhile, Jeffry Nilles is a single parent of five.He’s currently enrolled in a college program.And says he’s trying to give his children a much different experience growing up.mblackburn@aptn.ca@mblackburn21last_img read more

Presidential hopefuls pushed to go big on climate change

first_imgWASHINGTON — Environmental activists are ramping up a pressure campaign designed to drum up Democratic support for a sweeping agenda to fight climate change, with the 2020 presidential campaign in their sights.Hundreds of young demonstrators are planning to turn out Monday on Capitol Hill to push Democrats on a package of ambitious environmental goals — including a nationwide transition to 100 per cent power from renewable sources within as little as 10 years — that’s collectively dubbed the Green New Deal. Already embraced by Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., an increasingly influential figure on the left, the Green New Deal is designed to nudge prospective Democratic presidential candidates to stake out aggressive positions on climate change. Some cast the goals as idealistic and politically risky.Organizers with the Sunrise Movement activist group frame it as a make-or-break issue for Democratic voters, particularly young ones. But they’re fighting recent history on that point.Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., jockeyed during the 2016 Democratic presidential primary over their plans to stave off the devastating effects that scientists have warned of as temperatures continue to rise. Ultimately, however, other issues dominated the debate, and climate change barely registered during the 2016 general election.Stephen O’Hanlon, a spokesman for the Sunrise Movement, said, “Any senators or any other politician who wants the votes of young people in 2020 needs to back a Green New Deal that would transform our economy and create millions of new jobs stopping climate change.”As he weighs another White House run, Sanders has staked out an early claim on the issue, hosting Ocasio-Cortez for a climate change town hall last week and preparing a forthcoming proposal that an aide said is likely to align with the broad goals of the Green New Deal.“Next Congress I will be working on legislation that addresses the scope of the crisis we face, creates tens of millions of jobs and saves American families money while holding fossil fuel companies accountable for the enormous damage they have done to our planet,” Sanders said in a statement to The Associated Press. “Our job is to be bold, to think very big and to go forward in a moral struggle to protect our planet and future generations.”When Sanders introduced single-payer health care legislation last year, most Senate Democrats also considering presidential runs signed on at the outset. It’s not clear, however, whether other prominent Democrats eyeing the White House would back Sanders’ forthcoming climate change bill or seek to carve out their own territory.Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., said last week that “obviously, we have been doing a lot of work trying to find some bolder things we as a nation could be doing” on climate change. Booker spokeswoman Kristin Lynch that his staff has held dozens of meetings since the summer aimed at shaping a broad climate bill and that he welcomes the activists’ effort to spotlight the issue.The staff of Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., has been in contact with the organizers behind the Green New Deal push, according to spokeswoman Lily Adams, who said the senator is broadly supportive of the sort of sweeping climate change agenda that the effort envisions. As legislation aimed at enacting the Green New Deal begins to take shape, Adams added, Harris plans to take a close look at it.The Green New Deal deliberately omits details on how to reorient the United States toward the drastic carbon emissions reductions it calls for, instead calling for a select committee in the House to devise a plan by 2020. That timetable is designed to rally Democrats behind a climate change strategy as they’re picking a nominee to take on President Donald Trump, who has rolled back multiple environmental regulations and cast doubt on the scientific consensus that human activity is driving global warming.Bill McKibben, a leading environmentalist whom Sanders tapped to help write the Democratic National Committee’s party platform in 2016, said that it would be “hard for me to imagine a serious Democratic candidate emerging” in the 2020 presidential race who doesn’t support a version of the Green New Deal, single-payer health care and a $15-per-hour minimum wage.The plan, named for the New Deal that reshaped America under former President Franklin D. Roosevelt, envisions a costly and dramatically remodeled U.S. energy infrastructure as soon as 2030. It’s a shift from where Democrats laid down their symbolic markers on climate change as recently as last year. Sanders and Booker, as well as potential presidential hopeful Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., introduced legislation then that aimed to shift the nation to 100 per cent renewable and clean energy sources by 2050.Fossil fuels, mostly natural gas and coal, generated 63 per cent of U.S. electricity in 2017, compared with 17 per cent for renewable sources such as wind and solar, according to the nonpartisan Energy Information Administration. Nuclear energy comprised the remaining 20 per cent.“Is it all that realistic? Probably not, in the environment where we work. Certainly not now,” Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., the party’s senior member on the environment committee, said of the Green New Deal’s target. “But it’s a good aspirational goal.”Sarah Dolan, communications director for the conservative opposition research group America Rising, warned that Democratic presidential hopefuls’ “race to the left” on climate change, as well as on health care, minimum wage and immigration, would backfire in 2020.“Being the first to take the most progressive position of the day will only lead to a party that can’t compete in the general election as it becomes unrecognizable to independent voters,” she said.Elana Schor, The Associated Presslast_img read more

In Zimbabwes crisis we cannot talk of Christmas anymore

first_imgHARARE, Zimbabwe — Dressed as Father Christmas, a man dozes off while sitting in a supermarket in Zimbabwe’s capital, Harare. No one seems to care.The holiday mood is not catching on in a country where a currency crisis has forced people to risk jail time to buy basics such as medicine and food. Many Zimbabweans navigate from one currency to another, often tapping the black market, while the government issues salaries in forms of payment it later refuses to accept.The frustration has sparked a new round of anti-government sentiment in a country that once saw July’s presidential election, the first without longtime leader Robert Mugabe, as a chance to start over. New President Emmerson Mnangagwa declared the country “open for business.” But citizens are now asking: How?This is Zimbabwe’s most severe economic meltdown since a decade ago, when the local currency was abandoned due to hyperinflation that reached more than 1 billion per cent. Since then, daily transactions have been dominated by the U.S. dollar.But a dollar shortage has pushed most people to use a government-issued surrogate currency called bond notes, as well as mobile money, which are funds electronically deposited into bank accounts. Both are devaluing quickly against the dollar on the black market.A major problem comes when Zimbabweans try to spend their money. Retailers, who source most of their foreign currency on the black market, require customers to pay in dollars. Others post separate prices for dollars and mobile money.Even the government is not accepting bond notes and mobile money for some transactions such as taxes on imported cars, though most Zimbabweans are paid in electronic form. As people turn to the black market, the government last month introduced regulations prescribing up to 10 years in jail for illegal foreign currency trade.Many Zimbabweans, like Takudzwa Ndlovu, an office worker in Harare, are confused.“How can the government refuse to accept the money that it uses to pay its own people. And then arrest us for looking for the only currency that actually works?” he said.Changing one’s salary into foreign currency can be a nightmare.Ndlovu gets his $450 monthly salary in mobile money. His bank, like every other bank in the country, no longer issues foreign currency for electronic bank balances, even though the government insists that mobile money and bond notes are on par with the dollar.“The black market is my only option. We are innocent people just trying to survive, but the government has turned us into criminals,” Ndlovu told The Associated Press.The vice-president of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions, Patience Taruvinga, called the mobile money worthless.“Salaries are being eroded daily,” Taruvinga said, criticizing the new government, which has promised to turn the country into a middle-class economy by 2030. “We cannot talk of Christmas anymore.”The currency crisis is causing unrest. In November, thousands of opposition supporters protested in Harare, while doctors at public hospitals are on strike over low pay and poor working conditions. They earn a basic salary of about $350 in mobile money, which translates to $100 in dollars using black market rates.Zimbabwe’s teachers and nurses have threatened to join the strike if their salaries are not converted into dollars.Demand for dollars is high. Police routinely carry out street raids to flush out illegal foreign currency dealers, who have turned to WhatsApp groups to connect with clients.Many Zimbabweans fear a repeat of a decade ago, when pensions and savings were wiped out by hyperinflation. The signs are worrying. Inflation rose to 28.5 per cent in October, the highest since 2009.To encourage use of the bond note at its introduction in 2016, the government’s central bank put up billboards saying it was on par with the dollar. “No need for a separate account,” they read.Two years on, Zimbabweans are being asked to open separate dollar accounts. Existing electronic bank balances and bond notes now count separately.“There is a collapse of trust,” said Briggs Bomba, an economist and leader of Citizens Manifesto, an activist group.Bomba described the government’s demand to be paid in foreign currency for some transactions as “myopic acknowledgement” of a parallel market exchange rate.For Zimbabwe’s revenue generation and debt management, dollars are crucial. “But the issues that benefit citizens such as salaries, pensions and savings, the government doesn’t want to acknowledge that the official exchange rate is fictitious,” Bomba said.The frustration is bubbling over.Charlton Tsodzo, a development expert, commented on the crisis recently at a public discussion in Harare titled “Austerity for Poverty,” mocking the title of the 2019 government budget: “Austerity for Prosperity.”“We are being asked to tighten our belts,” he said, “but do the politicians know we can’t even afford the belts anymore?”___Follow Africa news at https://twitter.com/AP_AfricaFarai Mutsaka, The Associated Presslast_img read more

Unemployment increase to over 4 percent

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The unemployment rate in Northeast B.C. moved above 4 percent in the second month of 2018.According to data released by Stats Canada on Friday, the unemployment rate in Northeast B.C. sat at 4.5 percent in February, from 3.8 percent in January.The region saw an addition 600 people added to the labour force in February while the number of people working increased by only 300 up to 38,000 people. Northeast B.C.’s unemployment remains lower than the rest of the province, which is currently at 4.9 percent.  The area with the lowest unemployment in the B.C. was in the Lower Mainland, where only 4.0 percent of the labour force was without work. The highest unemployment rate in B.C last month was recorded in the Thompson-Okanagan, where 7.5 percent of the labour force lacked a job.last_img read more

Precision Drilling reports 1983M Q4 loss due to one time charge

first_imgRevenue for the quarter totalled $427 million, up from $347.2 million.Precision Drilling says it took the goodwill impairment charge due to a decrease in oil and natural gas well drilling in Canada and the outlook for activity in Canada and in its directional drilling division in the U.S.Excluding the goodwill impairment charge, the company says it would have earned $1 million for the quarter. CALGARY, A.B. – Precision Drilling Corp. reported a loss of $198.3 million in its fourth quarter as it was hit by $208 million in goodwill impairment charges.The oilfield services company says the loss amounted to 68 cents per diluted share for the quarter ended Dec. 31.That compared with a loss of $47 million or 16 cents per share in the same quarter a year earlier.last_img

Taylor and Fort St John Councils working to deal with recent mill

first_img“We are going to look at this in a similar fashion as any other type of emergency.  By creating an emergency operations centre, so to speak and bringing in the resources needed to accommodate and manage the impacts of the emergency,” says Ackerman.  The City and District of Taylor have already reached out to the Forestry Practices Alliance of Canada, the Health Authority, the School District, the Northern Development Initiative trust for their internship program and the Community Development Institute of UNBC, all groups that have walked other communities through similar economic downturns.The Mayor expresses that she wants other industries that are operating in the area to recognize and acknowledge, “local hire and local contractors,” with the hopes that laid-off employees get opportunities to transition into one of the other industries.“We need to ensure our forestry workers completely understand that their Councils are not letting this go and we are not going to let them down,” said the Mayor “Our request to the Ministry this afternoon (June 14th) will really be a transfer of support. We are going to be looking for, in the same way, other communities have done for funding for emergencies.”“We are going to look at funding for adapting to whatever is going to happen, here to ensure we have the mental health support,” said Mayor Ackerman, “make sure we can soften whatever has happened and hopefully say goodbye to one industry and move to another one with a smooth transition.”Mayor Ackerman shares a quote her father always taught her, “You will never live long enough to learn everything yourself.” The Mayor hopes that with both Councils working together, they can share the workload.“There is going to be a lot of conversations about this over the next little while,” she said as they continue to look at supports such as mental health. “We are not letting this go and not letting them down,” said Mayor Ackerman. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Fort St. John and Taylor Councils coming together to address recent mill closures.Mayor Lori Ackerman says Fort St. John Council is working with the District of Taylor Council. Both Councils are aware that the closure at the Peace Valley OSB Mill and the temporary curtailment at the Canfor facility in Taylor will affect residents in both communities.Mayor Ackerman shared that a steering group is being created from both communities, to create a unified strategy. As the Mayor said, “We’ve seen shutdowns in other communities. In Fort St John, we have already considered this risk, we have seen it over the decades.”last_img read more

AAP deliberately delaying Kanhaiyas prosecution

first_imgNew Delhi: Delhi BJP President Manoj Tiwari on Thursday launched a fresh attack on the AAP government, following the Delhi government’s request of one month’s time in granting permission to authorities in moving the JNU sedition case forward.In a statement, Tiwari alleged that the state government in the Capital is misusing its position to deliberately shield Kanhaiya Kumar, the prime accused in the case and that this goes to show where the Kejriwal government’s sympathies truly lie. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderAccusing the AAP government of siding with anti-national forces, the MP from North-East Delhi said that it is disrespecting the judiciary by asking for more time in granting requisite permissions. Tiwari also connected Congress’ promise of scrapping sedition laws to the Delhi government’s stance on Kumar’s ongoing sedition. He added that the people of the country have a choice between a nationalistic party like the BJP and the opposition in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. “Aam Aadmi Party is deliberately delaying permission to prosecute Kanhaiya Kumar and Kejriwal is also ready to campaign for Kumar. We will have to watch in which direction the politics of the country is going.”last_img read more

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra holds roadshow in Gzb

first_imgGhaziabad: Ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha election, Congress party star campaigner Priyanka Gandhi Vadra held a roadshow in Ghaziabad on Friday and also appealed the residents of the city to vote Dolly Sharma, who is the lok sabha candidate from Congress party in Ghaizabad district.A massive crowd throng into the road show while Gandhi breached her security and went into the crowd of women where she took a small child into her hands and interacted with the local people. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderOn the occasion, she spoke about her party’s minimum income guarantee scheme and asked the ruling party what they did in five years of their tenure. “PM Modi has travelled the world. But in 5 years, has not for once, visited a family in his constituency and ask how they have been. PM hugs all world leaders. Have you ever seen him hug a poor family in Varanasi or other place of the country?” said Gandhi. She also assured the people of the city that Congress will work for welfare people and development not for anyone else. “We have come up with a manifesto which is focused on the development of all the segments of society. The manifesto has been decided after speaking to the shopkeepers, farmers and the young people what they want,” added Gandhi.last_img read more

NGT seeks details from DPCC on action being taken against illegal water

first_imgNew Delhi: The National Green Tribunal has sought details from the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) on action being taken against illegal supply of water at Jamia Nagar here. A bench headed by NGT Chairperson Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel asked the DPCC to file an affidavit showing action and not mere proposal or recommendation. “The compensation to be recovered must take into account the value of the groundwater extracted and must be deterrent so as to discourage violation. “It should be adequate to recover the cost of restoration. If these factors have not been considered, the same be now considered and the amount revised. Basis for determination be indicated,” the bench said. The tribunal had earlier sought a report from the DPCC which told the bench that the SDM has been asked to take action and compensation of Rs 50,000 was assessed. The NGT was hearing a plea filed by city resident Shahid Khan who alleged that illegal business of water supply was going on at a house at Joga Bai near public library in Jamia Nagar. The tribunal has earlier directed the Delhi government to act against unauthorised water extraction in the national capital and directed it to seal the illegal borewells. It had also directed the authorities to mark the borewells which were discharging contaminated water, containing high levels of fluoride and arsenic, in red colour to apprise people that the water was unfit for consumption.last_img read more

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