Montreal mothers battle Quebec government in court over distance learning for children – Montreal

Click to play video
A trial pitting a group of Montreal mothers against the Quebec government over distance education has begun in Quebec Superior Court.The mothers, represented by human rights lawyer Julius Grey, want their children to be able to learn from home during the coronavirus pandemic.Currently, only students with medical conditions or at-risk family members living in their homes are permitted to learn at a distance full-time.“What we’re asking for is a distance learning option, whether that comes in the form of an online program or remote option, just sending us material and helping us supervise our children, sending us answer keys, that kind of stuff,” said Politimi Karounis, a mother of three from Pierrefonds and one of the lead plaintiffs.Testifying by video from her home, Karounis told judge Chantal Chatelain she has COVID-19 concerns...

Nova Scotia investing $3.1M for construction of viewing deck on Peggy’s Cove shore – Halifax

Design showing how the viewing deck will look like (Develop Nova Scotia)
The province of Nova Scotia announced Friday that it will be investing $3.1 million to support the construction of an accessible viewing deck on the rugged shore of Peggy’s Cove, one of the province’s most popular tourist areas.This new project will help ensure a safe, accessible and engaging experience for visitors, business operators and residents.According to the province, the viewing deck and railings will be made of wood and steel, materials that will last and are complementary to the rugged terrain. Design showing how the viewing deck will look like (Develop Nova Scotia). The rail guard will be a steel knit pattern that resembles fishnet. It will be set into the landscape and take the shape of the rock to avoid overshadowing the real attraction at...

Winnipeg libraries move to fine-free model, outstanding fees waived – Winnipeg

Winnipeg libraries move to fine-free model, outstanding fees waived - Winnipeg
Winnipeg libraries are shelving overdue fines and borrowing fees.The move, first suggested by Coun. Sherri Rollins, will see fines for all overdue items and DVD/Blu-ray borrowing fees eliminated as of Jan. 1. Read more: Winnipeg councillor calls for elimination of overdue fines at city libraries “Overdue fines create a barrier for those who can benefit most from library services. Fines also create negative experiences for our community and library staff, and discourage use of the library,” reads a statement on the city’s website.“Now everyone can access and enjoy the services we offer without worrying about financial penalties if items are returned a few days late.”Winnipeg Public Library is happy to announce that overdue fines and DVD/Blu-ray borrowing fees have been eliminated, effective January 1,...

NDG couple don capes and cowls, channel power of Batman to raise money for kids in halfway houses – Montreal

Click to play video
A couple from NDG are enlisting the help of the Dark Knight himself to help out local kids living in halfway houses.Jonah Carson and Katie Nicol, both 31, launched the Batman for Batshaw campaign after they found out many children in the youth protection system do not have access to technology.“They have one computer that they share between 25 to 30 kids, so it’s really not a lot,” said Katie Nicol, one the campaign’s creators. Read more: ‘I felt like I was important’: Batshaw tradition spreads holiday cheer one gift at a time She said the poor access to technology can force children to miss school, meetings with social workers, therapists or family members.“We feel like access to technology, access to online is something that we take for granted so easily. It’s so easy for most of us. And these kids...

Alberta’s first fully accessible outdoor rink will soon be open in Calgary

Alberta’s first fully accessible outdoor rink will soon be open in Calgary
Alberta’s first fully accessible outdoor skating rink is now under construction in northwest Calgary and will be open early in the new year.The rink is being built at the community of Parkdale. Read more: Calgary-made bike giving freedom back to outdoor enthusiasts with disabilities The Parkdale Community Association needed to build a new rink to replace their old one. Association members  decided they wanted to make it accessible for everyone and consulted with the Calgary Sledge Hockey Association.“Since we are building this from scratch we thought why not? Hockey is for everybody and let’s set a new standard for the city,” Parkdale Community Association rink director John Butterwick said.“It should be the standard way of building outdoor rinks.” Story continues below...

Nova Scotia invests $360K in housing facility for criminalized women transitioning back to society – Halifax

Click to play video
Nova Scotia announced Wednesday that a total investment of $360,000 has been made to the Elizabeth Fry Society’s Holly House for the next two years in an effort to enhance access to housing and supports.Holly House is a supportive housing facility in Dartmouth operated by the Elizabeth Fry Society of Mainland Nova Scotia. It is the only housing option in the province specifically designed for women transitioning out of a provincial correctional facility. Read more: Woman taken to hospital after assault in N.S. prison According to the province, more women in conflict with the law will have access to needed supports that will help them break the cycle of poverty and criminality.“Funding will allow Holly House to continue delivering its around the clock support to women and increase the facility’s capacity from eight...

New Brunswick PC majority removes thrust of opposition’s abortion motion, reference to Clinic 554

Click to play video
New Brunswick’s PC government removed the thrust of an opposition motion calling on the province to fund surgical abortions outside of the province’s hospitals on Thursday.A non-binding motion from the Liberal party called for the funding of abortions at Clinic 554 and the repeal of Regulation 84-20, which prohibits the funding of abortions outside of hospitals.Currently, abortions are only funded by the provincial government at three locations: two hospitals in Moncton and one hospital in Bathurst, locations that critics say limit accessibility for those who need the procedure. Read more: New Brunswick Medical Society warns of health-care gaps after Clinic 554 closes Clinic 554, which has already partially shut down as a result of a lack of funding, performed surgical abortions and also functioned as a family...

COVID-19 in Africa — pandemic could be far more deadly than thought – National

Click to play video
A study of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum suggests that only two to five per cent of the total number of coronavirus deaths have been officially reported.The report, led by the Imperial College London (ICL) COVID-19 Response Team, says that as of Nov. 20, 477 deaths in Khartoum state were reported to be related to COVID-19.It estimates the true figure to be between 14,300 and 17,990 higher than that.The report also estimates that as much as 38 per cent of the population of Khartoum was infected.Dr. Oliver Watson, an infectious disease modeller at ICL and one of the report’s authors, says scientists cannot analyze deaths in the developing world the same way they do in developed countries because deaths are not always correctly registered and death data is not always accurately gathered. Story...

Speaker Darryl Plecas offers suggestions for B.C. legislature on way out the door

Click to play video
Ban heckling in the B.C. legislature.Establish a non-partisan “fact-checker” of statements made by MLAs in the Legislative Chamber.Provide child care to enable participation in public consultation events.Hold question period later in the day so it is less likely to be catered to the media.These are just a handful of the more than 100 suggestions Speaker Darryl Plecas is putting forward in a report less than a week before he leaves the job. The suggestions stem from a series of roundtables Plecas has been hosting to improve the way the B.C. legislature operates. Read more: Report calls for end of B.C.’s legislative assembly police force, changes to sergeant-at-arms job Many of the suggestions are far outside the responsibilities of the Speaker and include guidance for elected officials, the public and the...

N.S. to spend another $14.3 million on school programs, drinking water – Halifax

Click to play video
Nova Scotia has announced that it will use $14.3 million from the federal safe return to class fund to help pay for healthy food programs, math and literacy programs and personal protective equipment (PPE) for staff and students.The province’s education and early childhood minister Zach Churchill announced the funding on Wednesday.These investments will support the health and safety of our students and provide the supports they need to be successful at school, Churchill said.“COVID-19 has pushed us to find new ways to keep our students learning in safe, supportive environments. This funding helps our students and staff this year, but also leaves a lasting legacy in our schools for years to come.” ...