No body no parole Alberta candidate wants law to help victims families

first_imgEDMONTON – A would-be politician in Alberta wants Canada to adopt a “no body, no parole” law that would give killers a chance at freedom if they revealed the locations of missing victims.Dane Lloyd is vying for the federal Conservative nomination in the riding of Sturgeon River-Parkland west of Edmonton, the seat left vacant when the party’s interim leader Rona Ambrose left politics this summer.He’s promising to introduce a private member’s bill calling for the law if he wins the nomination this weekend and is later elected to Parliament.“I believe that withholding (the whereabouts of) the body of your victim is committing a second crime,” Lloyd, 26, said Wednesday. “It revictimizes the family every day, having to live without the knowledge of where their loved ones are, without the closure of a funeral.”Lloyd said several jurisdictions in Australia have enacted such a law and he was inspired to push for it in Canada after meeting the family of Lyle and Marie McCann’s.The seniors vanished after setting out from St. Albert, a city north of Edmonton, on a camping trip in 2010. Their burned-out motorhome and a vehicle they had been towing were later discovered in the bush.Travis Vader, a drug user on the run from police, was convicted last year of manslaughter in their killings and sentenced to life with no chance of parole for seven years.The bodies of the McCanns have never been found.“Everyone in this community knows about the McCann case and Travis Vader,” said Lloyd. “And when I talk to them at the doors, they say, ‘This is just common sense. How is this not a law already?’”Lloyd was working as a parliamentary adviser to St. Albert-Edmonton MP Michael Cooper when he met the McCann family last year. Cooper helped the family push for the elimination of an out-dated murder law that a judge initially used to convict Vader. The government moved in March to get rid of several so-called “zombie laws” from the Criminal Code.Ottawa’s next move should be helping families get closure when they have no bodies to bury, said Lloyd.He suggest that if killers revealed the location of remains, they would get a chance at parole —but not a guaranteed release.Bret McCann said it’s a terrific idea.“I don’t want to be wondering and I don’t want my whole family to be wondering, years and years from now: where are my parents?” McCann said.“The whole purpose of our prison system is to rehabilitate these people, to reintegrate them back into society. And if they never acknowledge guilt and never tell the truth, then that’s a major obstacle.”Defence lawyer James Lockyer with Innocence Canada said the problem with such a law is that people who are wrongfully convicted don’t know where the bodies are.“They’re being ordered to produce something they can’t possibly produce.”His client, Robert Baltovich, was convicted of second-degree murder in the death of his girlfriend Elizabeth Bain, who vanished on her way to a night class at the University of Toronto’s campus in Scarborough in 1990. Baltovich served eight years before a new trial was ordered on appeal.The Crown agreed not to pursue a second trial if he told them where the woman’s body was, Lockyer said. But Baltovich couldn’t tell them what he didn’t know, and he was eventually acquitted by a jury.In reality, the parole board already considers remorse and responsibility, said the lawyer. And it would be unlikely that a convicted killer who refused to help authorities locate a body would be released early.last_img read more

Nature Conservancy finds endangered greater sage grouse on Saskatchewan property

first_imgREGINA – Biologists have made a discovery on a swath of native grassland in southwest Saskatchewan that they are calling exciting, but are also hesitant to talk about.Mike Burak, with the Nature Conservancy of Canada, says the group has found endangered greater sage grouse on a 1,222 hectares conservation area known as the Wideview Complex, next to Grasslands National Park.“We found a couple of individuals in a couple of different places on the property,” Burak said in an interview with The Canadian Press.“We’re not going to release which parts of the property we did find them on, just because we don’t want to give any more away then we really have to. But because they are a critically endangered species, it is something to celebrate that we have found them and they are using the property as habitat.”Environmental groups have warned that the greater sage grouse is in danger of becoming extinct in Canada.In late 2013, the Canadian government issued an emergency protection order covering nearly 1,700 square kilometres of federally and provincially owned land in southeastern Alberta and southwestern Saskatchewan to protect the bird’s habitat.Last year, it was reported that numbers of male greater sage grouse have almost quadrupled since 2014, with nearly 80 male birds being counted in southern Alberta and Saskatchewan — up from 20 male birds counted in 2014.Burak wouldn’t say how many greater sage grouse were found in the conservation area. Researchers are worried about people going to the conservation area specifically to find the endangered birds, he said.“Ultimately, we’ve decided to put it out there that we’ve found them and hope that people will respect that and not do anything inappropriate, and not try to get to close to them or to go out there during inappropriate times of year, like during the spring when they’re breeding or during the nesting season, to disrupt them.”The Nature Conservancy of Canada announced the new conservation area back in March, but it was too cold to assess species at the time.A lot of the species that would use the property through the spring and summer would have migrated away to the southern United States or even South and Central America, said Burak.“We needed to wait until everybody was kind of back up here in Canada and set up for the breeding season before we actually go out there and look for them, just because they don’t hang around through the winter,” he said. “They kind of leave and then they come back up here to nest.”When researchers did get out to the property, they identified 10 different species that are either listed under the federal Species At Risk Act or that have been assessed by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada on the property.That includes threatened birds such as Sprague’s pipit, loggerhead shrike and common nighthawk.“I was very surprised that there was a pretty wide variety of species that like really short, heavier grazed grass and then a few hundred metres away from that, you’d have a thicker stand of grass which would have species … which like taller, thicker grass,” said Burak.“It’s not very common to find that kind of a variety in close proximity to each other, so we were just really happy with the different individual habitat types that we were finding.”He says the findings will be reported to the federal government, which helped fund the purchase of the land, and the provincial government so that it can help track species.last_img read more

Jury begins deliberation in murder trial for presumed death of Laura Babcock

first_imgTORONTO – The case against two men accused of killing a young Toronto woman whose body has not been found was put to the jury on Tuesday with the judge reminding jurors to rely on the circumstantial evidence they heard during the trial.The instructions from Superior Court Justice Michael Code capped the nearly eight-week trial of Dellen Millard and his friend Mark Smich, who pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in the presumed death of Laura Babcock, who disappeared five years ago.“When you first start, it is unwise to take a firm, rigid decision,” Code told jurors. “You are judges, not advocates for one side or the other.”Code’s 350-page instruction to the jury over more than three days involved a comprehensive recap of the evidence and positions of the parties. The case, he said, hinges upon a “large and complex” body of circumstantial evidence about whether Babcock is dead and if Millard and Smich caused her death.The prosecution alleges Millard, 32, of Toronto, and Smich, 30, of Oakville, Ont., killed Babcock, 23, in July 2012, a murder they had planned for months. Millard wanted her dead, the Crown asserted, because she had become the odd woman out in a love triangle involving Millard and his girlfriend, Christina Noudga.The accused covered up their crime by burning Babcock’s body in an animal incinerator that was later found on Millard’s farm near Waterloo, Ont., the prosecution alleged. Both Millard, who is representing himself, and Smich’s lawyer argued the Crown had not even proven that Babcock is dead.Among things the jury were never told was that Millard and Smich were convicted of first-degree murder last year in the death of Tim Bosma, of Ancaster, Ont., who took the pair on a test drive while trying to sell his truck. Nor were they told the pair burned Bosma’s remains in the same incinerator the Crown alleges was used to dispose of Babcock’s body.Jurors were also kept in the dark about Millard facing yet another first-degree murder charge, this one in the 2012 death of his father, Wayne Millard, which was initially deemed a suicide.The Crown produced thousands of text messages — much of it gleaned from a backup copy of Millard’s phone found on a computer in his home — along with phone-location data that put Babcock near Millard’s house on July 3, 2012. Babcock’s last outgoing phone call occurred at 7:03 p.m. that day and her phone stopped connecting with cell towers the following morning. Her family and friends have not heard from her since.According to the prosecution, Millard and Smich killed Babcock sometime after 8 p.m. on July 3 with Millard wrapping her body in a blue tarp and hiding it at his farm near Waterloo until they got the incinerator operational. They allege the pair burned her body on July 23.While jurors were told of the love triangle, they weren’t allowed to hear an alternative prosecution theory that the pair killed Babcock for thrills and that they had both indulged in criminal behaviour that included stealing trailers and trafficking and smuggling drugs.Code deemed the evidence too prejudicial.Instead, court heard about an ongoing feud between Babcock and Noudga — friends said both were sleeping with Millard at the same time and there was “bad blood” among the three.In mid-April 2012, at the height of animosity between the two women, court heard that Millard texted Noudga saying, “First I’m going to hurt her. Then I’ll make her leave. I will remove her from our lives.”In his closing arguments, Millard said he didn’t care enough about Noudga to kill her and the text was simply a means of placating a scorned girlfriend. Smich’s lawyer Thomas Dungey said in closing his client had nothing to do with Babcock’s disappearance.last_img read more

Exhostage Joshua Boyle charged with sex assault assault forcible confinement lawyer

first_imgA Canadian man recently freed with his wife and young children after years of being held hostage in Afghanistan has been charged with at least a dozen offences, including sexual assault, his lawyer said Tuesday.Joshua Boyle, 34, was arrested in Ottawa, his lawyer, Eric Granger, told The Canadian Press.Ottawa police declined to provide any details on the case.Boyle and his American wife, Caitlan Coleman, were taken hostage in 2012 by a Taliban-linked group while on a backpacking trip in Afghanistan. Coleman was pregnant at the time and the couple had three children in captivity.Granger said the charges against Boyle also include assault and forcible confinement.“He’s never been in trouble before,” Granger said. “No evidence has been provided yet, which is typical at this early stage. We look forward to receiving the evidence and defending him against these charges.”Granger said his client is “coping.”“He’s as OK as anyone is who is suddenly and unexpectedly facing charges for the first time,” he said.A publication ban bars any information that could identify the alleged victims or witnesses in the case.A man who answered the phone at the residence of Boyle’s parents in Smith Falls, Ont., on Tuesday said he did not want to comment.The Prime Minister’s Office also said it would not comment since the investigation is ongoing.A government official said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met with the Boyles at the family’s request.The official said the prime minister would generally meet with any returning hostage with connections to Canada, and discussion of the hostage-taking was the main purpose of the meeting with the Boyles.Boyle has said he and his wife were helping ordinary villagers in a Taliban-controlled area of Afghanistan when they were seized. He told The Canadian Press that conditions during their five-year ordeal changed over time as the family was shuffled among at least three prisons.He described the first as “remarkably barbaric,” the second as more comfortable and the third as a place of violence in which he and his wife were frequently separated and beaten.Boyle said their captors from the Taliban-linked Haqqani network raped his wife and had also caused her to suffer a miscarriage. Shortly after landing in Toronto after being rescued, he demanded that his kidnappers be brought to justice.In an interview with ABC NEWS, Coleman, who is from Stewartstown, Pa., recalled that guards dragged her husband from their cell, and one of them threw her on the ground, shouting, “I will kill you, I will kill you” before assaulting her.She also said their captors beat their eldest son with a stick.The couple and their children had gone to Boyle’s parents home in Smiths Falls, Ont., after being rescued.last_img read more

Appalling comment on Saskatchewan Indigenous mans death probed by RCMP

first_imgOTTAWA – The RCMP says it will undertake a code-of-conduct investigation into a private Facebook group posting by a person believed to be an officer who reportedly said Colten Boushie deserved to die.A report on the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network says an RCMP officer on the Prairies posted the message, which says the shooting of the 22-year-old Indigenous man on a Saskatchewan farm should never have been about race.Boushie died when he and four other people drove onto Gerald Stanley’s farm near Biggar, Sask., in August 2016.Stanley was charged with second-degree murder and faced trial in Battleford, but was found not guilty by a jury last Friday.A statement from RCMP National Headquarters in Ottawa says the social media posting is antithetical to the force’s standards and the Facebook group mentioned in the report is not managed by the RCMP.Federal Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale says the remark is unacceptable and there will be consequences, depending on the outcome of the investigation.“This should never have been allowed to be about race … crimes were committed and a jury found the man not guilty in protecting his home and family,” the post said. “Too bad the kid died but he got what he deserved.”APTN did not disclose the person’s identity, but said two sources shared screenshots of the posting and revealed who the officer is.The message has since been deleted from the site called “News Stories that Matter to or May Impact RCMP,” which has 1,200 members who must answer questions posed by an administrator about their policing careers before being admitted.The RCMP’s statement in response to the story said on- and off-duty members must behave in accordance with the force’s code of conduct and that a member’s use of the internet for social networking is subject to the same standards.It said members must avoid compromising the integrity of the RCMP or portraying themselves or the organization in a disgraceful or discreditable manner. When concerns about disrespectful content believed to be written by an RCMP employee are raised, “they are and will be investigated and addressed.”“Public trust is essential for the RCMP to effectively fulfil its mandate. As a result, RCMP employees are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that meets the rightfully high expectations of Canadians,” said the release.Near the end of the Stanley trial last week, Saskatchewan RCMP sent out a statement reminding people to work together “in a spirit of inclusiveness and understanding.”“The RCMP is once again reminding people that they can and will be held responsible for their communications, both in-person and on-line, and police will investigate any complaints of suspected criminal behaviour,” it said.Goodale said he has talked to the RCMP about what he calls an “absolutely appalling” remark.“The facts are being determined and examined,” Goodale said. “If they turn out to be what they appear to be, this is unacceptable and there will be consequences.”— by Ken Trimble of The Canadian Press with files from APTN and CKRMlast_img read more

Calgary Olympic Bid Corp sees longterm housing benefits to hosting 2026 Games

first_imgCALGARY – A draft plan for a potential Calgary 2026 Olympic bid says the event could create more affordable housing in a region that badly needs it and provide a welcome jolt to the provincial economy.“Calgary has one of the lowest stocks of affordable and social housing in the country relative to the size of the city,” the Calgary 2026 bid corporation said in a report presented to city council on Tuesday, noting a shortfall of 15,000 affordable housing units.The plan envisions spending $600 million on about 2,800 units that would temporarily house athletes and officials during the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Games and then be turned over to long-term housing. About 20 per cent would be at market rates, with the rest set aside for affordable housing and other non-market uses.There is a plan for three to four new affordable housing projects that would yield at least 600 units, as well as a new 200-unit senior’s complex. It also said there could be new housing for urban Indigenous people and students.An athletes’ village planned near the Stampede Grounds would accommodate 3,100 people during the Games. After, that would be converted into 70 affordable, 140 attainable or near-market and 500 market units.The hosting plan also sees Canmore — a Rocky Mountain town about an hour west of Calgary that would host some events — building a 1,200-bed athletes’ village that would be repurposed to more than 240 affordable housing units managed through its housing corporation. Another 24 units would be for athletes and coaches to use in future.Construction would take place in 2024 and 2025.The bid corporation pegs the total cost of hosting the Games at $5.23 billion, of which about $3 billion would be shouldered by taxpayers at the municipal, provincial and federal levels.But Calgary 2026 CEO Mary Moran said in a presentation Tuesday that it’s important to look at the bang for the buck.She said it’s estimated there will be $2.2 billion in private investment and up to $1.5 billion in federal cash that would never flow without the Olympics, as well as a $2 billion boost to Alberta’s gross domestic product and $200 million in tax revenues.There’s also the benefit of new and refurbished sports venues that will be used in the future, as well as less tangible benefits like the boost to Calgary’s profile on the world stage.“If you look in the case of Vancouver, they had about $1 billion worth of advertising value during the Games, which would be hard for the civic partners in this community to achieve without a big international, well-televised global event like this.”last_img read more

White supremacist disavowed by UCP and federal Tories joined Berniers party

first_imgOTTAWA – An alleged white supremacist who was kicked out of Alberta’s United Conservative Party found a new political home in Maxime Bernier’s fledgling People’s Party of Canada — at least briefly.Adam Strashok’s name has vanished from the membership list on the “People’s Network — Alberta” Facebook page (where “Mad Max supporters” there organize online), along with virtually all other evidence of his previously active life on social media.But a cached version of the page from mid-September shows that he had joined the party and signed up two others.A party spokesman did not directly answer when asked if Strashok is still a party member and, if so, whether his membership would be revoked.“I can tell you he has not been elected to any interim EDA (electoral district association) board and, as far as we know, is not involved in organizing,” Martin Masse said in an email.In a bid to insulate itself from extremists, the People’s Party is asking all members of its riding associations across the country to sign a pledge promising that they “have done or said nothing in the past and will do or say nothing in the future that would embarrass the party.”But Masse said that vetting system applies only to riding-association board members, “not to our 32,000 members or to the thousands of people who’ve been attending a meet-up or commenting on Facebook.”However, he added: “We’ve always been very clear that anyone with extreme views was not welcome in the party.”Asked again whether the People’s Party would cancel Strashok’s membership should it discover he is still a member, Masse said: “I repeat: We’ve always been very clear that anyone with extreme views was not welcome in the party.”The Canadian Press couldn’t reach Strashok to ask him about his party affiliations.Alberta UCP Leader Jason Kenney last month disavowed Strashok after reports by online media outlets Ricochet and Press Progress revealed he had posted anti-Semitic and white supremacist messages on social media sites and was involved in an online store that sells memorabilia glorifying white minority-rule in Rhodesia, the colonial precursor to Zimbabwe.Among other things, the store sells T-shirts emblazoned with “Let’s slot floppies,” Rhodesian military slang for “Let’s shoot black insurgents.”Kenney, who had employed Strashok to run his call centre during the UCP’s leadership contest last year, issued a statement saying he was “shocked and disturbed” by the reports. He said he’d been unaware of Strashok’s “extreme views” and had instructed party officials to revoke his membership.It appears that at least until last August, when Bernier split with the Conservatives to form his own party, Strashok was actively involved with the federal Conservatives.He had served on the executive of the party’s campus club at the University of Calgary and worked for Calgary MP Bob Benzen. He spent a summer working as an intern for Calgary MP Michelle Rempel when she was minister of state for western economic development and posted photos of himself with groups of Conservatives, including Rempel, Benzen and MP Blake Richards.Conservative party financial records filed with Elections Canada show that Strashok donated $290 to the party in May 2016 and $532 in June of this year. Party spokesman Cory Hann said those donations were the registration fees paid to attend party conventions — the last one held in Halifax in August.Hann said Strashok’s views “obviously do not reflect the views of our party.”“These views are not welcome in our party and had we been aware of them, we would never (have) allowed him into our party, neither as a volunteer nor as an intern.”Hann added that Strashok is no longer a member of the Conservative party “and my understanding is he’s been organizing for Mr. Bernier in Alberta.”Rempel confirmed that Strashok, who lived in her riding, was hired as an intern in her regional office — to the best of her recollection, in the summer of 2013. His job would have been akin to “shredding photocopy paper,” with access to nothing confidential, she said.He also served briefly on her riding-association board until summer 2015, when some executive members became aware of some “questionable” social-media posts.“The minute we became aware of this, he was asked to resign and he did,” Rempel said. “I have a zero-tolerance policy on any sort of anti-Semitic language, like more than zero-tolerance policy. That is completely unacceptable and there is no place for that type of language and I denounce it in the strongest possible terms.”Benzen said Strashok was an intern in his Calgary office in 2017 after he won a byelection and first became an MP. Strashok helped with research to get him up to speed on federal issues, Benzen said.“I can tell you there were no indications at all, in either his conduct or his conversation, of the views now attributed to him. Such views are unacceptable and would never have been tolerated had they been known,” Benzen said in an email.Richards said he’s not familiar with Strashok.last_img read more

Calgary International Airport scores average in new survey

first_imgCALGARY (660 NEWS) – The Calgary International Airport is perfectly average according to a survey from JD Power.The company’s latest airport satisfaction survey was released ranking North America’s medium, large and mega airports.Calgary scored 765 out of 1,000 which is exactly the average score for a large airport.FULL REPORTYYC trails the Vancouver International Airport which scored 801. New York’s LaGuardia Airport had the lowest score for large airports with 662.Calgary’s score was greater than Toronto’s Pearson International Airport at 745, which is below the average score for mega airports.Despite expansion efforts, airports in North America struggle to keep travelers satisfied amid construction delays and surging passenger volumes. Learn more from the 2019 North America #AirportStudy >— J.D. Power (@JDPower) September 25, 2019The Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport was the highest-ranked mega airport. Portland scored the highest in the large airport category and the Indianapolis Airport just squeaked by Jacksonville to take top honours in the medium category.last_img read more

Roger Daltrey Announces Teenage Cancer Trust Shows

first_imgBack at the helm of Teenage Cancer Trust at the Royal Albert Hall, Roger Daltrey CBE, has announced this year’s stellar line up for shows taking place from 24 to 30 March 2014.The line up for the 14th year of fundraising concerts include The Cure, Suede, Ed Sheeran, Paolo Nutini, Jason Manford, John Bishop, Micky Flanagan, Rob Beckett, Hal Cruttenden and OneRepublic.Teenage Cancer Trust patron and The Who front man, Roger Daltrey has been the driving force behind the concerts which have raised over £17million for young people with cancer since they began in 2000. In 2013, music and comedy fans enjoyed seven magnificent SOLD OUT shows. Guest curated by Noel Gallagher, not only did the charity achieve record-breaking ticket sales, but it was also a year of unique “I was there” moments. 2014 is set to do the same. Noel is back on board and has helped Roger put together a fine week of shows with an eclectic mix of exceptional artists.The Cure make a welcome return to the Royal Albert Hall following their acclaimed 2011 show and will play a full three hour show two nights running. This will be The Cure’s second time performing for Teenage Cancer Trust after closing the week of shows for the charity in 2006. They also raised money for the charity on Record Store Day 2012 by releasing ‘Friday I’m In Love’ on a limited edition 7″. This year is the 35th anniversary of debut album ‘Three Imaginary Boys’, highlighting The Cure as one of the UK’s most influential and timeless bands. Bandleader Robert Smith said: “The Cure are once again delighted and honoured to be playing the Royal Albert Hall for Teenage Cancer Trust.”Ending the week of shows on Sunday 30 March, Suede will perform their hugely acclaimed second album ‘Dog Man Star’ to celebrate the 20th anniversary of its release. The lauded album, which was also re-released in 2011, is often regarded as the band’s masterpiece, cementing their influence as the pioneers of Britpop. Suede credit their performance for Teenage Cancer Trust in 2010 with getting the band back together. Brett Anderson said, “It’s great being involved with Teenage Cancer Trust again. It’s a fantastic charity and we have a proud history of involvement with them. The gig we did for them at the Royal Albert Hall in 2010 was possibly my favourite ever show in 25 years of playing live.”Grammy-nominated, multi-platinum selling, singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran will start the run of shows on Monday 24 March. A two-time BRIT Award winner and recipient of an Ivor Novello Award, the 22-year old’s debut album ‘+’ is now certified six-time platinum in the UK. His Teenage Cancer Trust show precedes a massive arena tour in October. Ed Sheeran said: “When Noel asked me to play last year I couldn’t as I was touring Australia. I promised him and Roger that if they wanted me another time I’d be there, so here I am! I’m the same age as some of the people the charity helps and it’s a real honour to be asked. I hope we raise lots of money and awareness for Teenage Cancer Trust.”Also confirmed to headline on Wednesday 26 March is Paolo Nutini who recently announced he will release his new album ‘Caustic Love’ in April; the follow up to his 2009 celebrated album ‘Sunny Side Up’. This is the Scottish singer/songwriter’s first live show since his appearance for the ONE Campaign last June . Paolo said: “This is an important cause and should have the support of as many people as possible. Roger called and kindly invited me to be a part of this year’s Teenage Cancer Trust gigs. And when Roger calls, you simply say: Yes! When d’ya need me!”As previously announced last year OneRepublic will headline on Thursday 27 March. OneRepublic took the world by storm in 2007 with their debut release ‘Dreaming Out Loud’. The album included the smash single ‘Apologize’, which shattered digital sales and airplay records worldwide and, along with second single ‘Stop And Stare’, propelled the album to platinum-plus sales and a GRAMMY nomination. Their recent single ‘Counting Stars’ was number one last autumn for numerous weeks and is taken from OneRepublic’s third studio album ‘Native’.Teenage Cancer Trust at the Royal Albert Hall wouldn’t be complete without an evening of comedy. This year sees Jason Manford hosting, joined by the superstar talents of John Bishop, Micky Flanagan, Patrick Kielty, Rob Beckett and Hal Cruttenden. Jason Manford said: “I love these Teenage Cancer Trust gigs. They stand-out not just because the atmosphere is always amazing, but also because of the young people with cancer I’ve met through being part of these shows for a number of years and visiting several of the charity’s specialist wards. They totally inspire me every single time. It’s a great night with a stonking line-up. Buy your ticket now!”Teenage Cancer Trust patron and The Who legend, Roger Daltrey, said “This is our fourteenth year at the Royal Albert Hall for Teenage Cancer Trust and I’m very happy to be back after handing the reins to Noel Gallagher for a year. The money raised is invaluable in helping young people with cancer, and in return for the public’s hard earned cash we put on some very special shows. This year The Cure and Suede return to play for us. How great to have Paolo Nutini, who was a teenager when we first started these shows. Even nearer to the age group that we serve is Ed Sheeran performing songs some of which were written when a teen himself.“Over the years we’ve had so many memorable moments. These include Noel Gallagher and Damon Albarn appearing together for the first time, Paul Weller, Kelly Jones and Eddie Vedder flying half way round the world to sing one song, Matt Bellamy playing the Hall’s famous pipe organ and so many more. These moments are amplified by the wonderful young people I have met. They shouldn’t have to stop being teenagers just because they have cancer. They are young people first – cancer patients second. With their incredible vigour and positivity as inspiration, we aim to keep Teenage Cancer Trust leading the world in cancer care for this age group.”The music and comedy shows are Teenage Cancer Trust’s flagship annual fundraising event. The money raised makes a massive difference to the lives of thousands of young people with cancer across the UK. As the only charity in the UK dedicated to supporting teenagers and young adults with cancer, Teenage Cancer Trust relies on donations to fund a range of services that aim to improve their quality of life and chances of survival. All proceeds from the shows go towards providing this specialist care and support for young people with cancer.This year’s shows are generously supported by headline sponsors The Body Shop and associate sponsors Ben Sherman, Derwent London and American Airlines. Further incredible support is provided by media partners Metro, Xfm and NME.Monday 24 March Ed Sheeran Tuesday 25 March An evening of comedy with Jason Manford, John Bishop, Micky Flanagan, Patrick Kielty, Rob Beckett and Hal Cruttenden Wednesday 26 March Paolo Nutini Thursday 27 March OneRepublic Friday 28 March The Cure Saturday 29 March The Cure Sunday 30 March Suede: Dog Man Star 20th AnniversaryTickets from £25 (plus booking fees).For more information go to read more

Drew Barrymores Cosmetics Brand Joins PETAs Beauty Without Bunnies Program

first_imgIt’s official: Drew Barrymore’s cosmetics line, FLOWER Beauty, is as kind to animals as it is to its customers’ skin.The company has just provided PETA US with assurance that it does not conduct, commission or pay for tests on animals anywhere in the world, a move that has landed FLOWER Beauty on PETA US’ Beauty Without Bunnies list of cruelty-free cosmetics.“FLOWER Beauty is about all things good”, Barrymore says. “Thank you, PETA [US], for the acknowledgment of our cruelty-free brand.”Every year, hundreds of thousands of animals around the world are force-fed chemicals or have substances dripped into their eyes or rubbed onto their raw, abraded skin in archaic, unreliable cosmetics tests, which are not required by law in the US and have been banned in the UK and the rest of the EU, as well as in Israel and India.While some companies test their products on animals, more than 1,500 compassionate companies – including FLOWER Beauty, LUSH, Urban Decay, Paul Mitchell Systems and The Body Shop – use only modern, non-animal methods to test their products and ingredients.Consumers can find out whether a company tests on animals anywhere in the world by checking PETA US’ lists here. For more information on the use of animals in experiments, please visit read more

Passenger Pledges New Album Profits To UNICEF

first_imgBritish singer Passenger has pledged all profits from his new album to UNICEF.Passenger – Whispers II“I’ve teamed up with UNICEF UK and I’m delighted to say that all of the profits, from every physical and digital sale of Whispers Two goes directly to helping malnourished kids in Liberia,” said the singer. “Hopefully this is a win/win situation where you guys get a new Passenger album and the money you spend on it goes to helping people who really need it!! I’ll be releasing this record on my own label (Black Crow Records) which is really exciting as it means that every penny of profit can go to where it is most needed.”To find out more, or to preorder the album, click here.last_img read more

Special Olympics And GoFundMe Announce Global Sponsorship

first_imgSpecial Olympics announced today their first-ever social fundraising collaboration with GoFundMe.Video: Sponsor an Athlete: 2017 Special Olympics World Winter GamesAs part of the effort, nearly 500 GoFundMes will be created by teams, coaches, as well as by Olympians, top professional athletes, YouTube stars and other influencers to support this worthy cause.“We are proud to partner with Special Olympics to help support these remarkable athletes and their communities,” said Rob Solomon, GoFundMe CEO. “GoFundMe’s mission is to empower people to help people, and Special Olympics has been helping to empower people with intellectual disabilities for almost 50 years. It’s an honor to share the stories of these competitors who have overcome obstacles.”Over 2,700 athletes from over 100 countries will compete in nine sports at the Special Olympics World Winter Games in Austria next month. Special Olympics is more than a sports organization — it is creating a worldwide movement that highlights inclusion and community, where every individual is accepted and included. For many competitors, it’s a life-changing experience.The GoFundMes created for these athletes will not only share each of their personal stories, but help them on their journey to the Games with expenses related to travel, training, equipment, coaching, and accommodations.“We are excited to collaborate with GoFundMe to help further drive support for our incredible athletes and tell their personal stories of achievement, bravery and inspiration as they prepare for the World Games” said Mary Davis, CEO, Special Olympics.The Special Olympics World Winter Games will take place March 14 through March 25 in Graz, Schladming, Rohrmoos and Ramsau, Austria. Many of the Special Olympics ambassadors and influencers will be attending the Games to cheer on these amazing athletes from the stands. Additionally, eight Olympic athletes, including Julia Mancuso, Hannah Teter and Apolo Ohno, shared messages of encouragement to Special Olympic athletes in a video embodying Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy’s message of hope and victory.To donate and learn more about their stories, and view all Special Olympic GoFundMes, visit: read more

Join Americas Most Courageous Canines at the American Humane Hero Dog Awards

first_imgFor eight years, American Humane, the country’s first national humane organization, and Palm Beach philanthropist Lois Pope have honored America’s bravest heroes on both ends of the leash through the annual American Humane Hero Dog Awards.Heroic hounds and some of the entertainment world’s biggest names are coming to Palm Beach for the exclusive, annual, star-studded “Hero Dog Awards Gala Luncheon” at The Breakers on Monday, March 19.Four of the top winners of the national Hero Dog Awards will be honored, including:• The nation’s top 2017 American Hero Dog Abigail, a victim of dogfighting who now fights this scourge and has become a national symbol of forgiveness. • • 2017 Hero Service Dog Atlas, who helped save the life of a former U.S. Marine coping with Post-Traumatic Stress following his service in Iraq. • • 2017 Hero Therapy Dog Aladdin, who was severely neglected but has now become a therapy dog, visiting schools, serving as a trained crisis response dog, and working with special needs children. • • 2017 Guide/Hearing Dog Pierce, who helped improve the life of an Operation Desert Storm veteran who lost his sight as a result of his wartime injuries.In addition to the four-footed stars, the event will feature human ones, as well, with appearances by Hero Dog Awards co-host Beth Stern and Daisy Fuentes, and performances by Grammy Award-winning singer, songwriter and producer Richard Marx, and the renowned Alex Donner Orchestra. “For thousands of years, people have had a special relationship with dogs, and the American Humane Hero Dog Awards are our way of honoring the best of our best friends,” said Dr. Robin Ganzert, president and CEO of American Humane. “The ‘Hero Dogs Award Gala Luncheon’ is an inspiring afternoon when we offer our thanks to so many of our greatest heroes – from service dogs who improve our lives to military hero dogs who fight alongside our troops and defend our freedom. We are grateful to all of them, to Lois Pope for her work in supporting these heroes, and all of our generous sponsors and National Ambassadors for helping us recognize their remarkable accomplishments.”“It would be impossible to count all of the ways that dogs make our lives safer, happier, and healthier,” said philanthropist Lois Pope. “We should never forget that some of America’s bravest heroes come on four legs and we need to pay tribute to their remarkable work and achievements.”For more information about the American Humane Hero Dog Awards gala luncheon, please contact Mari Harner at 561-537-5887 or read more

Please Stand By With Dakota Fanning

first_imgHere’s your chance to attend a screening of “Please Stand By” in New York with Dakota Fanning – and help charity.“Did you know that approximately one percent of the world population has autism spectrum disorder?” asks Dakota. “With almost 1 in 68 individuals affected, autism is the fastest-growing developmental disability in the US. In my new film, Please Stand By, I play a young woman with autism who runs away from her caregiver in an attempt to submit her manuscript to a Star Trek writing competition. I’m so proud of this film and for giving characters with this disability such a strong, powerful voice. Now I’m raising money to help people living with autism and I want to ask for your support.“For only a minimum donation of $10, you’ll be entered to win a trip to NYC to attend a screening of Please Stand By with me on World Autism Awareness Day, April 5! You’ll get VIP tickets to the screening and we’ll hang out. And don’t worry about your airfare and hotel — we’ve got those covered. Your donation to The Miracle Project supports this amazing organization that uses theater and expressive arts programs to help individuals with autism and other disabilities. If you donate more, you’ll earn more chances to win!”To take part in this great opportunity, visit read more

Michael Bloomberg Announces 2nd Annual Global Business Forum and One Planet Summit

first_imgMichael Bloomberg today announced the second Bloomberg Global Business Forum will be held in New York City on September 26th at the Plaza Hotel during the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly.Supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the daylong forum is the sole convening dedicated to encouraging presidents, prime ministers and CEOs to collaborate on trade issues by reaching a better understanding of one another’s challenges and mutual opportunities, thereby strengthening global economic prosperity. With protectionism on the rise – as well as worldwide population growth, economic inequality and climate change threats – it has never been more important for the world’s public and private sector leaders to uncover common goals and engage in economic diplomacy to promote continued globalization, innovation and competition. This one-of-a-kind forum will move beyond analysis and provide participants with the chance to shape the next stage of the global economy.“The Forum comes at a critical time as tensions around tariffs create economic uncertainty in many industries,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies, mayor of New York City from 2002-2013, UN Special Envoy for Climate Action and WHO Global Ambassador for Non-communicable Diseases. “We’ll bring together business and government leaders to focus on increasing trade and investment, and work together on other shared challenges. The dialogue at the Forum will be a powerful counterweight to talk of trade wars and will help spur new investment and growth around the world.”The inaugural Bloomberg Global Business Forum held in September 2017 was attended by more than 50 heads of state and 250 global CEOs from all regions of the world including French President Emmanuel Macron, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo, former U.S. President Bill Clinton, Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook, Blackrock Co-founder Larry Fink, Microsoft Corp. Founder Bill Gates, Alibaba Founders Jack Ma and Lucy Peng, PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son and many others. The Forum also served as the stage for several major announcements including announcements by World Bank President Jim Kim and UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa Cantellano who joined Michael Bloomberg to announce a new initiative to ramp up finance for climate action; California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.’s announcement of the 2018 Global Climate Action Summit being held in San Francisco; Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan views on security for a region in flux; and discussions by European Commission Vice President Federica Mogherini, ENGIE CEO Isabelle Kocher and Econet Founder Strive Masiyiwa on climate change, mass migration and economic transformations.The 2018 Bloomberg Global Business Forum partners are Alphabet Inc./Google CFO Ruth Porat, BNP Paribas CEO Jean-Laurent Bonnafé, Credit Suisse CEO Tidjane Thiam, Dangote Group President/Chief Executive Aliko Dangote, Engie Global CEO Isabelle Kocher, EXOR Chairman and CEO John Elkann, LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault, Mahindra Group Chairman Anand G. Mahindra, Misk Foundation Chairman and His Royal Highness Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, and SOHO China Founder and CEO Xin (Shynn) Zhang.Heads of state from five continents are already confirmed to attend this year’s Forum. Prominent attendees expected include United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa Cantellano; Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England; Adriana Cisneros, CEO of Cisneros Group; Valdis Dombrovskis, Vice President for the European Commission; Roger Ferguson, President and CEO of TIAA-CREF; Dawn Fitzpatrick, CIO of Soros Fund Management; Ken Griffin, Founder and CEO of Citadel; former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger; Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund; Bill McDermott, CEO of SAP; Nicholas Moore, Managing Director and Chief Executive Director of Macquarie; South African President Cyril Ramaphosa; The Rt Hon Patricia Scotland QC, Commonwealth Secretary-General; Feike Sijbesma, Chairman and CEO of Royal DSM; Barry Sternlicht, Founder and CEO of Starwood Capital Group; Margrethe Vestager, European Commissioner for Competition; Alexa von Tobel, Founder and CEO of LearnVest; and Fernando Zóbel de Ayala, President and COO of Ayala Corporation.Recognizing that saving our planet in the race against global warming is a shared responsibility requiring cooperation between governments, leaders from the public and private sectors and civil society, French President Emmanuel Macron, Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres, President of the World Bank Group Jim Yong Kim and United Nations Special Envoy for Climate Action Michael Bloomberg will host the second One Planet Summit on the afternoon September 26th at the Plaza Hotel. They will convene key influencers to account for the implementation of commitments made at the inaugural One Planet event in December 2017, celebrate progress made and further engage public and private actors to raise ambition for multilateral climate action. The One Planet Summit will show how high-level institutional decision-makers as well as individual citizens can all work as one planet to deliver solutions to mitigate the effects of climate change and invent our collective future.According to a Bloomberg Global Business Forum-Morning Consult poll conducted online from June 22 – 24, 2018, among a national sample of 2,202 adults 18 years and older, support for free trade and expansion of trade across borders has risen significantly since September 2017 to 63 percent (up from 52 percent), while support for globalization has held mostly steady (up to 50 percent from 47 percent).Overall, the poll shows half of Americans (50 percent) feel that the global economy is on the wrong track compared to less than a third (30 percent) who say it is moving in the right direction. Americans are also “nervous” and “worried” about the potential for a trade war with China with 44 percent of people polled saying they think we are already in a trade war with China. The poll also shows that 46 percent of Americans believe U.S.-imposed tariffs on goods has a negative impact on consumers, versus 28 percent who say it has a positive impact. More people (44 percent) support imposing tariffs on foreign-made goods that compete with U.S.-made goods than oppose it (32 percent). Morning Consult is a leading survey research, media and technology company. More details of the Bloomberg Global Business Forum-Morning Consult poll can be found here.last_img read more


first_imgPeter Mansbridge (Photo by Dustin Rabin) Login/Register With: Facebook Advertisement The 19 storage boxes of material will be housed in U of T’s Downsview library.From 1988 to 2017, Mansbridge was chief correspondent for CBC News and anchor of The National, CBC Television’s flagship nightly newscast. He was also host of CBC News Network’s Mansbridge One on One.On Sept. 5, 2016, CBC announced that Mansbridge, now 70, would be stepping down as chief correspondent and anchor on July 1, 2017, following coverage of Canada’s 150th anniversary celebrations.An article on U of T’s website says the school asked Mansbridge to donate his records to the library.Mansbridge, who holds an honorary doctorate from U of T, will host an event for students at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy in April.Peter Mansbridge kept many of his press passes from various events over the years. (Romi Levine/University of Toronto)The former anchor and chief correspondent of CBC’s flagship news program “The National” stepped down from his role in July 2017 after nearly three decades with the newscast.His work since has included freelancing on documentary projects for the CBC.With files from CBC News and The Canadian Press TORONTO — The University of Toronto has acquired the career archive of Peter Mansbridge.The U of T Libraries’ Media Commons says the meticulous collection spans nearly five decades of his career as a journalist and includes press passes, letters and photos.The school calls it a “treasure trove” that depicts not just Mansbridge’s career at the CBC but also the news industry and current events throughout the decades.center_img Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

Harper government unveils path to repeal Indian Act

first_imgAPTN National NewsOTTAWA–The Conservative government unveiled its plan Thursday to unravel and eventually replace the Indian Act as it put its full weight behind a private members bill to repeal sections of the 136 year-old legislation.The proposed Bill C-428, the Indian Act Amendment and Replacement Act, was initially tabled by Conservative Saskatchewan MP Rob Clarke, a former RCMP officer and Muskeg Lake First Nation member. The proposed bill would strike down several sections of the Indian Act including those dealing with residential schools, wills and estates and band bylaws.“This bill provides no cause for alarm among First Nations individuals,” Clarke said during a debate in the House of Commons. “Nor is there any cause for false alarms to be raised by First Nations leaders.”The bill would also require the Aboriginal Affairs minister to annually report on the government’s progress “toward the repeal and replacement of the Indian Act.”The Conservative’s “path” to eventually replace the Indian Act was revealed in Clarke’s speech delivered during first debate on the bill. The path was dubbed by the acronym “ARRC,” which stands for amend, repeal, replace and consult, said Clarke, MP for Desnethe-Missinippi-Churchill River.“I hope in my lifetime to see the complete repeal of the Indian Act and see it replaced by a more modern set of laws that reflects today’s values, but also respects our past,” said Clarke Thursday evening. “These amendments to the Indian Act can be an important stepping stone on the path to achieving self-sufficiency and prosperity in First Nations communities.”The Harper government took ownership of Clarke’s proposed bill earlier in the day.Aboriginal Affairs Minister John Duncan said during question period that Clarke’s bill was “consistent with the government’s own approach to Indian Act reform.” Duncan said the government supported the bill “in principle” and would work on getting it passed into law.“We look forward to studying the bill, exploring opportunities to improve it and passing it into law,” said Duncan.Clarke’s proposed bill would require the Aboriginal Affairs minister to report every year on the government’s work to get rid of the Indian Act. The report would be submitted to the House of Commons committee on Aboriginal Affairs by Jan. 31 of each year.“This section of my bill requires a collaborative consultation process between First Nations and the minister of Aboriginal affairs,” said Clarke. “This will ensure that First Nations can hold the government accountable for moving forward toward the complete removal of the Indian Act in a meaningful and respectful way.”The proposed bill would allow First Nation band councils to pass bylaws without needing a sign-off from the minister. The bill would also repeal a section banning the sale of alcohol on reserves.“It will provide these First Nations with the same rights and responsibilities that rural and urban municipalities have today,” said Clarke.Under Clarke’s bill, the Aboriginal Affairs minister would also no longer have final say over wills and estates and repeal largely ignored sections restricting trade between non-First Nations and First Nations people.The bill will also remove the term “residential school” from the Indian Act.“I am proud as a First Nations man whose grandparents attended residential schools in Duck Lake, Sask., to be privileged, as a member of the House of Commons, to repeal this particularly shameful section and wording in the Indian Act,” said Clarke. “I fear that having this remain in the Indian Act will enable a future government to create residential schools on First Nations reserves.”Clarke said fear of reprisal keeps many chiefs from openly supporting his private members bill.Both the NDP and Liberals said their parties would oppose it.NDP Aboriginal affairs critics Jean Crowder said the proposed bill would put wills and estates for First Nations people on reserves into a legal limbo.Crowder said any proposed bill dealing with the Indian Act should result from consultation with First Nations, not the other way around.“Consultation does not entail receiving emails from people and posting information on your website,” said Crowder. “Consultation does not constitute having witnesses appear in committee…go back to the drawing board and talk to First Nations from coast to coast to coast.”Liberal Aboriginal affairs critic Carolyn Bennett said any attempt to deal with the Indian Act should involve a proper process.“A back-bencher’s private members bill is not an appropriate consultation,” said Bennett. “This kind of thing must be undertaken between the prime minister in a government-to-government way.”Interim Liberal leader Bob Rae has authored a motion outlining a process for dealing with the Indian Act. He is expected to speak about the motion on Monday.Bennett said Clarke’s bill went against the promise made by Prime Minister Stephen Harper during the Crown-First Nations gathering not to unilaterally alter the Indian Act.In January, at the Crown First Nations gathering the prime minister said:“Our government has no grand scheme to repeal or unilaterally re-write the Indian Act. After 136 years, that tree has deep roots. Blowing up the stump would just leave a big hole. However, there are ways, creative ways, collaborative ways, ways that involve consultation between our government, the provinces and First Nations leadership and communities. Ways that provide options within the Act, or outside of it, for practical, incremental and real change.”Clarke’s Conservative colleagues blasted the opposition for not supporting the bill. Alberta MP Chris Warkentin, who chairs the Commons Aboriginal affairs committee, said the bill is authored by a First Nations person for First Nations people.“He has overcome the travesty that is this Act and overcome past injustices to reach this House,” said Warkentin. “He has every right to bring forward a private members bill in this House.”Warkentin said none of the opposition members had lived under the Act, unlike Clarke.The bill now goes to the Aboriginal Affairs committee for study and to hear from witnesses.The Conservatives hold a majority on that committee.last_img read more