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Minister Valcourt unaware of residential school document destruction denial policy

first_imgJorge BarreraAPTN National NewsAboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt says he’s unaware of an internal analysis drafted by his department outlining Ottawa’s position to officially deny Indian residential school documents were ever intentionally destroyed.Valcourt faced questions from the NDP during question period Thursday following an APTN National News story based on an Aboriginal Affairs internal analysis describing the reason behind Ottawa’s policy to claim missing residential school documents were accidentally destroyed.The department’s analysis said an admission that residential school documents were ever intentionally destroyed would open the federal government to litigation.Compensation payments to residential school survivors under the multi-billion dollar settlement agreement are largely based on historical records proving students attended the institutions.Over 50,000 survivors have failed to obtain their claimed compensation because no historical record existed proving they attended the schools.Valcourt said he was not aware the department had drafted an analysis on the issue.“If my department issued such a document officially, show it to me,” said Valcourt, in an interview.APTN National News forwarded the document to the minister’s office, which claimed it did not reflect government policy and was written by a junior bureaucrat.“The document in question was a draft written by a junior staffer. It does not reflect the government’s views,” said Valcourt’s spokesperon Jason MacDonald.MacDonald, however, did not state what exactly the government’s views were in respect to the destruction of residential school documents.Download (PDF, Unknown)Indian residential school documents were pulped and incinerated as a result of three major rounds of government-wide document destruction directives issued between 1936 and 1973.Valcourt seemed perturbed by the NDP’s line of questioning during QP and appeared to believe B.C. MP Jean Crowder, the party’s Aboriginal affairs critic, was accusing the Harper government of destroying documents.“Well 1939, I was not here, this government was not here, we did not destroy documents,” he said. “Unless the genius of the NDP can resurrect 1939 documents, there is nothing I can do.”The federal government maintains that none of these documents were ever purposely destroyed, but fell victim to floods and fires, according to an Aboriginal Affairs analysis recently obtained by the National Residential School Survivor Society through the Access to Information Act.“The government of Canada has taken the position that there was no deliberate destruction of student records and residential school documents and that documents were destroyed as a result of institutions that burnt down or were flooded,” says a departmental analysis from 2009. “The admission of the deliberate destruction of student records and documents might spur further legal action against the government of Canada.”The analysis was triggered by a report issued by the National Residential School Survivor Society which took issue with the missing paper trails that left many residential school survivors receiving far less in compensation than they initially claimed because they couldn’t prove how many years they actually attended the school.Under the multi-billion dollar residential school settlement, $1.9 billion was set aside for “Common Experience Payments” which were based on the number of years former students attended the schools.A separate, Independent Assessment Process, was created to deal with compensation for abuse suffered at the schools.Crowder said it was troubling Aboriginal Affairs appeared to have such a limited grasp over the issue of historical residential school documents.“If the department doesn’t have a handle on whether documents were destroyed or not, then there are serious repercussions for survivors if documents were destroyed because we know those documents were relied on for compensation,” said Crowder.The federal government is already stinging from this week’s release of the spring Auditor General’s report which chided Aboriginal Affairs and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission over their handling of the transfer of existing residential school documents.With the TRC facing the end of its mandate in a little over a year, it’s still unclear how much it will cost to gather all the remaining documents, who will pay for it or even what documents are “relevant.”jbarrera@aptn.ca@JorgeBarreralast_img read more

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InFocus The Education of Augie Merasty

first_imgAPTN InFocus with Cheryl McKenzie:Sometimes it takes years before residential school survivors share their personal experiences.For Augie Merasty, it took decades.With the help of an award winning writer, Augie’s personal memoir was eventually published: The Education of Augie Merasty.He’s now 86 years old.  His daughter tells us about how they weren’t sure he really was writing a book, until one day, sure enough, they knew it was true.Watch how the story unfolded.last_img

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Colombia to Mexico via human smugglers Brazeaus alleged victim reveals journey to

first_imgJorge Barrera APTN National NewsShe said the beginning of the journey began in a courtroom “like this one” in Colombia when police escorted her toddler son’s father from prison to sign the release so she could take the boy to Panama for “vacation.”On the afternoon of day two in the Gatineau, Que., trial of suspended Senator Patrick Brazeau, who has pleaded not guilty to charges of assault and sexual assault, defence lawyer Gerard Larocque attacked the credibility of the alleged victim during cross-examination. First he pressed her on details of her tale of escape to Canada and then suggested the RCMP helped her get permanent status in exchange for dirt on the fallen Algonquin politician.When he hit a dead-end, Larocque abruptly switched to the subject of a necklace Brazeau gave the woman. The slight necklace belonged to Brazeau’s mother and the alleged victim said she ripped it off during the incident on that Thursday morning of Feb. 7, 2013.By focusing on the woman’s mostly underground journey to Canada, Larocque unearthed a Hollywood-worthy tale of a mother fleeing Colombia to protect her two children by embarking on the oft-trod clandestine path taken by Latin Americans heading to El Norte.The woman told a story of mini-bus rides through Central America and forged passports in Mexico before landing at the airport in Montreal with her son and a daughter sometime in March of 2008 where she faced interrogation into the early morning hours.The alleged victim, who can’t be identified by name because of a publication ban, said she had to flee Colombia to protect her children because there were threats against them.“I left Colombia for that reason,” said the woman, who was an accountant and director of the library in the university from where she graduated.Canada was her intended final destination, but her visa application to enter the country had previously been rejected.So, she decided to go underground.After arranging through local lawyers to have her son’s father escorted to a courtroom to sign a release so she could take the boy out of the country, she flew to Panama. She said the father believed she was only going for vacation, but she had previously arranged to meet a man who would arrange the passage to Canada.It cost her about 25 million Colombian pesos to make the journey, which was about $13,000 US dollars based on the exchange rate in the first part of 2008. In 2009, the average monthly Colombian salary was about 570,000 pesos.The alleged victim wouldn’t reveal who the man was, the fixer, in Panama. She said he used fake names and didn’t remember the one he went by at the time. She said one of the contacts along the way was named “Maria.”From Panama she drove through Costa Rica to Guatemala in a “small car” with the fixer, a driver and her two children. In Guatemala she said she changed vehicles and traveled in a small bus, with five other people picked up along the way, to Mexico. She said she wasn’t asked to show any documentation at any of the customs check points. She would have passed through Nicaragua and either Honduras or El Salvador, depending on the route her fixer took to Guatemala.In Mexico, she and her two children had photos taken for the fake passports that had been pre-arranged. She said she needed the Mexican passports to get into Canada because she had been previously denied a visa under her real name.She stayed a month in Mexico before flying into Montreal, with at least $3,000US hidden in her coat, sometime in March of 2008. When she reached the Canadian customs officer she presented six passports, three Colombian and three Mexican, and said the Mexican documents were fake. She said the customs officer seized all the passports. She denied she also brought money hidden in her socks.“They made me go into a room and made me wait until 1, 2 a.m.,” she testified. “They were looking for an interpreter and looking for information. I went to another office and they started interrogating me.”She said it was difficult for her to recall all the details of that day.“It’s difficult for me to remember everything in 2008,” she said, after Larocque pressed her on the money hidden in socks. “At that moment I had a lot of emotion, fear, stress, I didn’t know what would happen when I arrived here with my two children.”She applied for refugee status and, sometime in 2013, received her permanent residency status and got all six passports back.It was at this point that Larocque began pressing her on the date she received the status. She couldn’t remember and Larocque tried to have Judge Valmont Beaulieu order her to bring the document to court Wednesday. Beaulieu rejected the request. But he did order her to bring her six passports to court.Larocque suggested that the victim received her residency because she helped the RCMP with their separate investigation into Brazeau and his Senate housing allowance. Brazeau is facing one charge of breach of trust in Ontario as a result of that investigation. The charge stems from his claiming of the $22,000 per year in housing allowance by listing his father’s home in Maniwaki, Que., as his permanent residence.“I want to suggest that your situation in Canada improved after being in contact with the RCMP,” said Larocque.Crown prosecutor Sylvain Petitclerc said Larocque achieved little with that line of questioning.“It was very, very long, for nothing,” said Petitclerc to reporters after the day’s hearing.Larocque abruptly switched his line of questioning after the victim recounted the part about the police officers escorting her son’s father to a courtroom to sign the release.He asked for a replay of the 911 audio and then went after the necklace.“You had a chain around your neck that my client gave you?” said Larocque.The woman said, yes, she had the necklace, which was Brazeau’s mother’s, around her neck when the alleged attack began in full.Larocque said the alleged victim never mentioned the thin necklace, which snapped when she yanked it off her neck, in the various statements she gave to the police or the Crown prosecutor. He said she never mentioned the necklace when she was asked earlier Tuesday to circle the bruises and scratches on her body in photos taken shortly after the alleged attack.She said she didn’t remember it, that there were a lot of details she didn’t remember from that day. She said she didn’t remember the bruises Brazeau left on her buttocks until she saw the photos Tuesday morning.She said she yanked the necklace while she was on the ground, at the top of the stairs as Brazeau, also on the ground, pushed her from behind with his feet. She said he was demanding the necklace back.“I grabbed it and said ‘take your mother’s chain,’” she said.She said she pulled the necklace off with her left hand.“It’s a formal choice you made not to speak about the necklace,” said Larocque. “Because those injuries (to the neck) would have been from your actions.”She denied it.“Not from my actions,” she said. “He grabbed me by the neck.”Larocque leaned into her, pressing on.“Never before had you mentioned that you ripped off the necklace,” he said.“Yes because here is my opportunity to speak about everything and respond to all the questions in detail that you want to know about what happened,” she said.Larocque then said she yanked off the necklace in the bedroom, not at the top of the stairs.She denied it.“That is what enraged you, that he wanted the necklace back,” he said.“False,” she said.Court then broke for the day.The trial resumes Wednesday morning. The trial is expected to last beyond this week.Read Tuesday morning’s court testimony here.jbarrera@aptn.ca@JorgeBarreralast_img read more

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During suicide debate Justice Minister says its time for First Nations to

first_imgBy Jorge Barrera APTN National NewsJustice Minster Jody Wilson-Raybould said Tuesday the Trudeau Liberal government aims to “complete the unfinished business of Confederation” and replace the Indian Act with a “reconciliation framework” that would outlast the life of this administration.Wilson-Raybould didn’t lead the government side in an emergency debate held late into the night which was triggered by a suicide crisis gripping the small fly-in community of Attawapiskat in Ontario’s James Bay region. Yet, her speech was the only one that revealed the extent of the historical vision the Trudeau government has when it comes to reshaping the relationship between the state and the original inhabitants on this land.The Liberals aim to do nothing less than scrap the Indian Act. In its place the government wants to create a new relationship based on section 35 of the Constitution, which guarantees Aboriginal rights, and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), according to Wilson-Raybould.“We need to ensure we breathe life into section 35 and that we complete the unfinished business of Confederation,” said Wilson-Raybould. “If we do so we will have a strong and appropriate governance in First Nation communities wherein they have moved beyond the Indian Act.”For about five-and-a-half hours on Tuesday evening, the House of Commons, the centre of political life in Canada, turned its full attention to the dark and painful suicide epidemic that seems to cycle through northern First Nation communities.The latest is Attawapiskat which declared a state of emergency Saturday after recording 11 suicide attempts in a 24-hour period.NDP MP Charlie Angus, whose riding includes Attawapiskat, called for the debate to not only discuss the Cree community, but also similar tragedies that have hit other First Nation communities: Pimicikamak Cree Nation which declared a state of emergency last month after suffering six suicides and 140 attempts in the span of two months and La Loche, Sask., a Dene community that suffered a school shooting that left four dead in January.Wilson-Rayboud, a former regional chief for the Assembly of First Nations, who is now the country’s top lawyer, wove her own life experience and political track record in a speech that traced the roots of the suicide crisis to the 140-year-old Indian Act. Her speech laid out the thinking behind much of the symbolism and language the Trudeau government has employed whenever it communicates about the relationship between Indigenous peoples and the Canadian state.“I am proud to be an Indigenous person and stand up in this honourable house and speak to this important issue,” she said. “Indigenous peoples in this country are at an important junction in our history as they seek to deconstruct their colonial legacy and rebuild their communities….Only the colonized can decolonize themselves and change is not easy.”Wilson-Raybould then attacked the Indian Act.“It is not easy to remove the shackles of 140 years of life under the Indian Act. Our government, and I hope all members of this honourable house, is committed to ensuring, in partnership with Indigenous peoples, to do just that,” she said. “For Attawapiskat and for all First Nations, the Indian Act is not a suitable system of government, it is not consistent with the rights enshrined in our constitution, the principles as set out in (UNDRIP) or calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report. In addition to the need for social and economic support, urgently needed in Attawapiskat and all First Nations, all Indigenous peoples need to be empowered to take back control of their own lives.”Then, Wilson-Raybould described the scale of the project as nothing short of historical in a portion of her speech addressed directly to Indigenous peoples.“Indigenous peoples, the challenge is not easy, it is complex, indeed for far too long it has been ignored as a task as too difficult and monumental, but we can and must do better. This work is non-partisan, it is broader than the department of Justice and did not just fall to the department of Indigenous and Northern Affairs,” she said. “The nation-to-nation relationship is one of the most challenging public policy issues of our time and I challenge all members of this House to work with us in building this relationship. There are no quick fixes to these issues, a substantive nation-to-nation discussion with Indigenous peoples is needed. We need to sit down and work jointly to ensure Indigenous communities are strong and healthy and in charge and in control of their own destiny.”There were about 20 NDP MPs, from a caucus of 44, in the chamber during the debate at various points, and about 50 Liberal MPs from a caucus of 184. The Conservatives had the lowest number attend, with about five scattered throughout their party’s 98-seat section in the House of Commons. Their numbers jumped to 11 when their Aboriginal affairs critic Cathy McLeod stood up for her turn in the debate and most sat around her for the benefit of the House of Commons camera.When the debate began, MPs from all sides said they wanted Tuesday night to be a turning point, the debate to finally end the debates about another crisis crippling another First Nation.Angus compared the current suicide crisis as Canada’s “Alan Kurdi” moment, referring to the image of the body of the three-year-old Syrian refugee child who drowned in September after a failed attempt to reach Europe.“It shocked the world,” said Angus, who triggered the emergency debate. “This is our moment….Tonight might be the beginning of a change in our country and that is what I am asking us to come together to do.”Angus’ voice, with emotion seeping in at the edges, read out messages from First Nation youths he recently received, including the words of Abigail Mattinas, from Constance Lake First Nation, who said she wanted to bring “light in a dark time.”NDP MP Georgina Jolibois spoke after Angus and said suicide attempts were starting to rise in La Loche, which sits in her riding, as a result of the January shooting. Jolibois said youth were not getting the help they needed. She said many youth were showing signs of post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the shooting.“But they have no one to turn to and nowhere to go,” she said. “The families are left alone on their own to mend for themselves and take care of their problems…Young people, children and their families when they are feeling the effects of PTSD they need to go to the health centre or the band office or clinic and say I need to speak to someone because I am feeling stressed and overwhelmed. They walk in and there is no one to talk to them.”Health Minister Jane Philpott said during the debate that she believed those supports should still be there in La Loche, but would discuss the issue with Jolibois. She said the Liberal government would this year be investing $300 million in mental health and wellness in Indigenous communitiesPhilpott began her Commons speech with the data: First Nation male youth suicide rates are 10 times higher than male non-Indigenous youth; First Nation female youth suicide rates are 21 times than their non-Indigenous counterparts; Inuit male youth rates are 35 times higher than their Canadian counterparts.“It is a staggering reality, it is completely unacceptable,” she said. “When I think there are communities in our country where young people as young as my young 15-year-old daughter and even younger than that, when there are young people in groups are decided that there is no hope their future, we must do better…tonight has to be a turning point for us as a country.”Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett, who was praised for her passion by MPs during the debate, became emotional as she recounted her last trip to Attawapiskat when she was an in opposition and the community was in the midst of a housing crisis.“I was thinking of my trip to Attawapiskat in one of those terrible homes and seeing this 10-month-old baby on the bed and just thinking that that baby can’t pay for whatever else is going on around, that baby deserves a chance,” said Bennett.Bennett, who at one point referred to herself as the “minister of reconciliation,” said “these communities need hope” and the children need to know “they are valued and have value.” Bennett said she was hoping by the end of the debate that all Canadians would lift these communities up.“Suicide is not a consequence of individual vulnerability,” she said. “It is about the causes of the causes.”She then listed many of the causes of the causes, including racism, Indian residential schools, colonialization, child abuse, over-crowded houses, lack of health services, lack of clean water and healthy food.“There is no single answer to addressing this,” said Bennett.In her speech, Bennett also discussed the child welfare system, “where we have more children in care than at the height of residential schools.” She also raised the issue of child abuse.“We have to talk out loud about that now,” said Bennett, referring to an Anglican priest who abused 500 children in Ontario’s James Bay region.“This is 20 years of abuse in that region,” she said. “This is not difficult to understand, to make the links.”The Conservatives took a different tack. While for a moment it seemed that the party’s Aboriginal affairs critic Cathy McLeod would continue to focus on the suicide crisis facing First Nations by recounting her first week on the job as a nurse in a First Nation community facing three suicides, she eventually shifted gears.“Moving back from the First Nation Transparency Act is a terrible disservice to band members,” said MacLeod.The Transparency Act was passed by the Stephen Harper government which forced band councils to publicly release their financial information. While the Act has not been repealed, the Liberal government has pulled back from court action to force non-complying First Nations to release the information.The issue was raised repeatedly by Conservative MPs during the debate.“To me this is a critical one step,” said McLeod. “We shine the light for communities to actually look at their leadership and what their leadership is doing.”MacLeod also said her party remained unapologetic about refusing, while in government, to move forward with $1.9 billion in education investment after First Nation chiefs refused to support accompanying legislation.“There should be some equal work done, not only is there money, but we are going to create a structure that is going achieve results we want to achieve,” she said, responding to a question from Edmonton NDP MP Linda Duncan.However, long-time Nova Scotia MP Bill Casey, who left the Conservatives and ran under the Liberal banner in the last election, summed up the sentiment of many MPs present in the House of Commons throughout the evening.“I was elected 28 years ago for the first time,” said Nova Scotia Liberal MP Bill Casey. “One of the first debates we had was this debate we are having tonight about the plight of Aboriginals….Are we ready to help? Are we ready to do something? Every single one of us, so we don’t do this in another 28 years, so we don’t do this debate in another eight years. That is the question for all of us.”The debate was expected to wrap up at midnight.jbarrera@aptn.ca@JorgeBarreralast_img read more

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Read the concerns that the Native Womens Association of Canada has about

first_imgSend a copy of this email to yourselfIf you want to submit this form, do not enter anything in this field APTN National NewsOTTAWA — The Native Women’s Association of Canada released its analysis of the terms of reference (ToR) for the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls announced Wednesday by Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett.While supporting the need for the inquiry, NWAC President Dawn Harvard expressed concerns about a number of areas of the (ToR) that will guide Commissioners Marion Buller, Michéle Audette, Marilyn Poitras, Qajaq Robinson and Brian Eyolfson.Thursday the organization that was one of the first to put the issue of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls on the national agenda.1. The trauma informed and culturally based counseling appears to be limited to “the duration of their appearance before the Commission.” Trauma does not have a timeframe and we asked that families and survivors be provided with trauma informed and culturally based counselling services in their community as they get ready to present to the Inquiry, at the Inquiry and after presenting to the Inquiry. We learnt a lot from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission including that the telling of the story of trauma can further trigger trauma. Let’s use those lessons that we learned.2. There does not appear to be an opportunity for families to pursue or reopen cases through the justice system. In fact, for families who want to pursue cases or re-open ones that have been part of the justice system, the Terms of Reference direct that the support the Commissioners can offer is to redirect them to the appropriate provincial or territorial victim services. Families are not looking for mainstream counseling services through victim services but justice. This is a missed opportunity.3. There is no mention of the role of the provinces and territories and yet we know that some of the systemic issues will require provincial discussions, namely police services and the child welfare system. We cannot ignore what we know. Girls have described that they were sex trafficked from group homes and motels that are part of the child welfare system. We have a disproportionate number of Indigenous people who are in the criminal justice system. These issues are all interrelated and our expectation is that one reason we are having the Inquiry to address how these issues relate to violence against Indigenous women and girls.4. There is no explicit mention of the need to work with the justice partners in order to make appropriate recommendations to ensure that there are changes in that system. We cannot ignore the fact that many family members or survivors of violence do not feel that they were treated respectfully or fairly by the justice system.Got a comment? Send it to us. Name Message Emaillast_img read more

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Face To Face Dennis Ward sits down with artist Kent Monkman

first_imgDennis WardAPTN Face To Face‘Shame and Prejudice: A Story of Resilience’ is a new art exhibit travelling the country challenging Canadians to look beyond the glossy celebrations for Canada’s 150th birthday.Artist, Kent Monkman believes at this point in time it’s important to have a critical perspective of Canada.Monkman joins Face to Face to discuss his work that depicts how colonial policies have institutionalized Indigenous people in Canada.last_img

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Alberta court overturns murder acquittal in Cindy Gladue case

first_imgThe Canadian PressThe Alberta Court of Appeal has ordered a new trial in the case of an Ontario trucker who was acquitted of first-degree murder in the death of an Indigenous woman.A jury found Bradley Barton not guilty last September in the 2011 death of Cindy Gladue.Gladue body was found in a bathtub in an Edmonton motel room.She bled to death after a night of what Barton called consensual, rough sex.The Court of Appeal says there were serious legal errors during the trial, including how the judge charged the jury about Barton’s conduct and on the law of sexual assault relating to consent.The appeal panel says these errors negatively compromised the jury’s ability to properly assess the evidence and apply the law correctly.last_img read more

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Manitoba chief says woman tried to blackmail him over images sent from

first_imgkmartens@aptn.ca@katmarte Peguis Chief Glenn Hudson says he is the victim of attempted extortion over an image on his phone. (APTN)Kathleen MartensAPTN NewsThe chief of Manitoba’s biggest first nation says someone tried to blackmail him over images that were sent from his phone in a speech in March during the community’s band election.“They threatened me. They threatened my family,” Glenn Hudson said in video of the speech that was posted to Facebook and recently shared with APTN News.Hudson was re-elected to serve four more years as chief of Peguis First Nation in April.APTN left several messages asking Hudson to comment further but he did not respond.The band’s director of communications, Dwayne Bird, also didn’t reply to an email seeking more information.In the video, Hudson said “a young lady” demanded $1,000 or threatened to release a photo of a man’s penis to his election opponents.APTN has learned the photo was sent from Hudson’s phone to a second woman – allegedly by accident.But she told friends about it – one of whom saw it as an opportunity to allegedly extort the chief.Hudson said the woman upped her demand to $1,500 the next day.So he called police.“You can’t allow people to do that,” he said, noting his wife was in full agreement.“She’s said, ‘Charge her,’” Hudson said in the speech. “Otherwise they’re going to continue to do that.”Hudson said the blackmailer backed down and apologized after police arrived.A copy of part of a texting conversation on the phone of Peguis Chief Glenn Hudson. (APTN)Copies of the original messages between Hudson and the second woman in January were posted on Facebook and shared with APTN.APTN is not naming the woman, who was not involved in the blackmail scheme and expressed shock at seeing the photo of a man’s penis that popped up on her screen.“What is that a picture of?” the woman texted to Hudson.“You just sent me a obscene picture.”“Idk (I don’t know) where?” Hudson texted back. “I don’t see anything on my phone.“What crazy must be hacked,” he added.Claiming his phone was ‘hacked’ is the same defence used by Grand Chief Arlen Dumas, who is on leave of absence from the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs after his own texting scandal broke earlier this month.Dumas said someone impersonated him on Facebook Messenger and in cellphone texts despite the texts appearing to come from a phone number that belonged to him.He said “spoof” texts can “make a message appear to come from one cell phone number when, in fact, they originate from another.”Hudson, who co-nominated Dumas for the position of grand chief two years ago, offers alternative theories for the penis photo sent from his phone, including that he hit a wrong button and asked the woman to delete it.He also refused to answer questions about the Dumas texting story from APTN at a recent event.“Promise that you erase that stupid video pic,” he told the woman by message.“Was sent by mistake in hitting a button I guess.”It is not illegal for adults to share nude photos unless the pictures are accompanied by threats or involve child pornography.“Guys shared stupid stuff even to me,” Hudson texted.“I’m sorry. Never do that kinda things.”The Peguis band council released a statement expressing confidence in Dumas following the texting revelation.The community, 170 kilometres north of Winnipeg, has a sexual harassment policy, but it applies to employees – not elected officials.last_img read more

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Canadas Walk of Fame to add Donovan Bailey Anna Paquin Viola Desmond

first_imgTORONTO – Six influential Canadians from the circles of sports, entertainment and culture will be added to Canada’s Walk of Fame next month.Olympic gold medallist Donovan Bailey, Oscar-winning actress Anna Paquin and civil rights pioneer Viola Desmond, are among the diverse selection of people who will be inducted at the annual awards gala in Toronto on Nov. 15.The others are Canadian folk icon Stompin’ Tom Connors, telecommunications leader Ted Rogers and science TV host and environmental activist David Suzuki.Half of this year’s honourees are posthumous recognitions as the organization’s incoming CEO Jeffrey Latimer attempts to draw equal attention to Canadians outside the entertainment and sports worlds.Desmond, who died in 1965, emerged as a figure who challenged racial segregation in Nova Scotia during the 1940s after being jailed for sitting in the whites-only section of a movie theatre. She fought the charges in court, and after losing various proceedings, closed her business and left the province. Desmond is often credited as Canada’s Rosa Parks, even though her trial pre-dated Parks’ 1955 challenge of bus segregation in Montgomery, Ala.In 2010, Desmond was given a posthumous pardon and an apology from the Nova Scotia government. More recently, she was featured in both a Heritage Minute and chosen to grace the new $10 bill. She is only the second honouree to be recognized specifically for her social justice work, after Supreme Court justice Louise Arbour was inducted in 2014.Connors, who died of kidney failure in 2013, is hailed as a writer of Canada’s cultural songbook with staples like “Bud the Spud,” “The Hockey Song” and “Sudbury Saturday Night.”Rogers, the late president and CEO of Rogers Communications Inc. who died in 2008, is considered a seminal figure in Canada’s broadcasting landscape. His upstart company stepped into the cable industry in 1967 and in the decades that followed became a dominant player in TV, radio and publishing.Bailey is a two-time Olymipic gold medallist and three-time world champion sprinter who once held the 100-metre world record.Actress Paquin is the youngest Canadian to win an Academy Award, capturing the honour for her role in the 1993 film “The Piano.” She has gone onto play Rogue in the “X-Men” movie franchise and Sookie in HBO’s “True Blood.”Suzuki, who holds a PhD in zoology, rose to international fame with his CBC-TV program “The Nature of Things,” which has aired around the world. He’s also an outspoken activist for numerous causes, including his own David Suzuki Foundation which encourages living in a sustainable environment.This year’s Canada’s Walk of Fame additions bring the number of inductees to 173. The ceremony will be broadcast in a one-hour TV special on Dec. 3. Eric McCormack, star of “Will & Grace” star and a former inductee, will host the festivities.last_img read more

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TSX caps good week by closing higher as investors respond to pipeline

first_imgTORONTO – Canada’s main stock index capped a good week with the energy sector closing higher Friday as investors responded positively to federal action to kick-start construction of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.Ottawa ordered the National Energy Board to redo its environmental review of the controversial project, this time taking into account the impact of additional oil tanker traffic off the coast of British Columbia.The move came less than a month after The Federal Court of Appeal quashed the approval the NEB and the cabinet gave the project in 2016, citing improper consultation with Indigenous communities and a lack of review of the marine shipping issue.“Any sort of movement on pipelines is viewed to be somewhat positive so we’re seeing a little boost on that side,” said Jamie Robertson, senior portfolio manager at Manulife Asset Management.The November crude contract was up 46 cents US to US$70.78 per barrel on the day. It gained 2.6 per cent for the week and closed at a 10-week high.The S&P/TSX composite index was up 9.38 points to close at 16,224.13, after reaching a high of 16,267.69 on 463.6 million shares traded.The TSX was up 1.3 per cent on the week while the loonie improved. On Friday, the Canadian dollar traded at an average of 77.42 cents US compared with an average of 77.48 cents US on Thursday.“It just feels like some of the tension around trade and tariffs has quieted down a little bit so the market is cheering that a little bit,” Robertson said in an interviewAltaGas Ltd. was the day’s biggest gainer, rising 5.87 per cent, while Prometic Life Sciences Inc. led on the downside, falling 7.41 per cent.Overall, base metals led, rising 1.36 per cent, while the health-care sector dropped 2.31 per cent led by Prometic and cannabis companies. Canopy Rivers Inc., the venture capital arm of the marijuana company Canopy Growth, closed down 11.4 per cent to $7.75, after gaining 150 per cent Thursday on its first day of trading on the TSX Venture exchange.Tilray Inc. closed down 30.25 per cent to US$123 on the Nasdaq, two days after it went on a wild ride by surging more than 90 per cent, dropping into negative territory and rebounding after the licensed producer said it got approval to export medical cannabis from Canada to the U.S. for a clinical trial.In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average hit a new high, gaining 86.52 points to 26,743.50. The S&P 500 index lost 1.08 points to 2,929.67, while the Nasdaq composite was down 41.28 points to 7,986.95.The economic data is supportive of strong earnings in the U.S. and Federal Reserve policy clearly indicates that rates will continue to rise, Robertson added.“The overall sentiment remains to be very constructive.”The November natural gas contract was up one cent at US$2.97 per mmBTU.The December gold contract was down US$10 at US$1,201.30 an ounce and the December copper contract was up 11.75 cents at US$2.86 a pound.last_img read more

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Study Italys economic crisis has affected nutrition

first_imgMILAN — A new study shows that Italy’s long economic crisis is having an impact on nutritional health in the country synonymous with the Mediterranean diet.The Economist Intelligence Unit in an index presented Wednesday ranked Italy as eighth among 12 Mediterranean countries surveyed for nutritional health.That was largely due to childhood obesity, with 21 per cent of Italian children ages 6 to 10 at risk. Other factors include weak nutritional education and growing popularity of fast food.The survey, funded by the Barilla Foundation, said a likely factor in the unexpectedly low ranking was the increase in the percentage of people living in poverty since the 2008-9 financial crisis: 29 per cent compared with 14 per cent in first-placed France.The Associated Presslast_img read more

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Ghosns legal woes highlight governance failings in Japan

first_imgTOKYO — One of the biggest mysteries surrounding the arrest of Nissan’s former chairman Carlos Ghosn is over how he allegedly could have underreported his income by millions of dollars for years and why the company is going after the suspected wrongdoing now.Ghosn, who headed the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Motors auto alliance, was arrested Nov. 19 on suspicion he underreported his income by $44 million over five years, or about half of what he was really making. Nissan Motor Co. and Mitsubishi have ousted him as chairman; the board of Renault SA of France says it’s waiting for more evidence.Nissan is among a growing list of top-name Japanese companies whose corporate governance has been found lacking in recent years. Experts say Japan needs independent oversight for executive pay, among other reforms.The Associated Presslast_img read more

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The Latest Police Comatose woman hospitalized after birth

first_imgPHOENIX — The Latest on a woman in a vegetative state at a Phoenix care facility who recently gave birth (all times local):2:55 p.m.Phoenix police say a woman in a vegetative state who gave birth at a long-term care facility is hospitalized along with her baby.Police spokesman Tommy Thompson said at a news conference Wednesday that investigators are gathering DNA from male workers at the facility and that a suspect has yet to be identified in the sexual assault.He says the incapacitated woman wasn’t able to give consent.Thompson says police were called Dec. 29 about a newborn in distress at a Hacienda HealthCare facility. He says the woman and child are recovering but didn’t release their conditions.An attorney for the woman’s family says the baby boy will be well cared for.Hacienda HealthCare says it’s co-operating with police and has called the case “deeply disturbing.”___1 a.m.Phoenix police are pursuing DNA samples from every male employee at a private care facility where a patient in a vegetative state recently gave birth.A spokesman for Hacienda HealthCare says investigators served a search warrant Tuesday to obtain DNA from all male staffers.Officials say they are committed to co-operating with the police to “uncover the facts in this deeply disturbing, but unprecedented situation.”A woman living at a Hacienda HealthCare facility in central Phoenix reportedly delivered a baby last month.San Carlos Apache Tribe officials say the 29-year-old woman is a tribal member and has been in a vegetative state for more than a decade.The Associated Presslast_img read more

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Pot deliveries OKd into Calif communities that ban sales

first_imgLOS ANGELES — California endorsed a rule Wednesday that will allow home marijuana deliveries statewide, even into communities that have banned commercial pot sales.The rule by the state Bureau of Cannabis Control was opposed by police chiefs and other critics who say it will create an unruly grey market of largely hidden pot transactions, while undercutting local control.The rule cleared by state lawyers Wednesday clarifies what had been apparently conflicting law and regulations about where marijuana can be delivered.Cannabis companies pushed for the change, since vast stretches of the state have banned pot activity or not set up rules to allow legal sales. They say consumers in those areas were effectively cut off from legal marijuana purchases, even though sales are legal in California.Michael R. Blood, The Associated Presslast_img read more

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ELC Student Charity Golf Tournament raises close to 5000 for Hospital Foundation

first_imgELC Vice-Principal, Lori Coulter, says community-based projects, such as the golf tournament, bring awareness to the students and allows them to discover how they can make an impact in their own neighbourhood.The Golf Tournament included 18 holes of golf, a golf cart, and a steak dinner. Over 40 golfers and 60 plus dinner guests were in attendance for the event. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – During the summer, four grade 10 students from the Energetic Learning Centre held a charity golf tournament fundraiser.As part of a Project-Based Learning Program, Colton Dyck, Jenna Miranda, Timber Wuthrich, and Mackenzie Gordon were able to raise almost $5,000 in support of the Fort St. John Hospital Eastern-Star Children’s Fund.With that money, the Hospital will be able to purchase new equipment for the maternity ward.last_img read more

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