Archive | November, 2017

Prepare for more snow than usual this winter, forecasters say

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

Most of Canada, including Ontario, will see a stormy winter, according to meteorologists at the Weather Network.

One of Canada’s high profile weather forecasters is warning Canadians across the country to brace for a whole lot of snow this winter.

Chris Scott, The Weather Network’s chief meteorologist, says the message from his forecast team is “buckle up, because it looks like a stormy winter.”

Scott says this year’s La Nina weather system bears a striking resemblance to that of 2007-2008, when Toronto had its snowiest winter on record.

“History tells us that when we have cooler waters off the coast of South America, that’s La Nina, and those winters tend to be classic Canadian winters.”

British Columbia, the Prairies, Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada are all in store for above normal levels of precipitation, according to the forecast.

In western Canada, that precipitation will likely be snow as the region shivers in below normal temperatures.

In Atlantic Canada, where temperatures are expected to be close to above normal, forecasters expect plenty of snow and ice but periods of milder weather and rain will keep snowbanks from getting too high.

Scott says storms with lots of snow are forecast for December in the eastern half of Canada, while in the western half of the county, the winter conditions are expected to start in January.

La Nina winters often mean changeable weather, and Scott says that while Canadians can expect to be pounded by numerous snowstorms, there will also be sustained periods of milder weather.

“You might get two out of three months where you think, ‘wow, that was a wild winter,’ and then one month where the winter goes away,” he explains. “But this will be a winter that’s more on than off.”

Scott says Southern Ontario and Quebec might see mild conditions during all of January.

The weather pattern also calls for a winter that lingers, meaning the country could experience snowstorms as late as March.

Scott notes that in the prairies a strong snow pack could benefit soil conditions and help produce a bountiful spring harvest.

Ski resorts are also anticipating a banner season, especially in western Canada, where the coastal mountains are already getting snow.

The only region of Canada not following the nationwide trend is Nunavut, which has seen warming temperatures in recent years due to global warming. Scott says Nunavut can expect warmer than usual temperatures again this winter, along with average levels of snow.

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Quebec judge hears first arguments against province’s face-covering bill

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

The justice heard arguments on a challenge of the legislation, known as Bill 62, which forces people to remove face coverings when receiving or giving a public service.

MONTREAL—A Quebec Superior Court justice promised on Friday to deliver a ruling as soon as possible regarding a request for a temporary suspension of Quebec’s controversial face-covering law.

Justice Babak Barin heard arguments on a challenge of the legislation, known as Bill 62, which forces people to remove face coverings when receiving or giving a public service.

Marie-Michelle Lacoste, a Quebec woman who wears the veil, as well as the National Council of Canadian Muslims and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association launched the challenge last week.

Lawyer Catherine McKenzie asked the court for a temporary suspension of the section of the law that forces public sector employees and private citizens to have their face uncovered when giving or receiving public services.

McKenzie argued the article in question violates the right to equality and freedom of religion, which are guaranteed by the Quebec and Canadian charters, and should be declared invalid.

She said the matter is urgent, given the significant impact on Muslim women who wear the veil on a daily basis.

McKenzie added the damages to those women would be irreparable.

The ban took effect in October and extends to attending class in Quebec’s public educational institutions or boarding public transit in the province, although people can don the face coverings again once they have shown identification on the bus or subway.

Two women who wear the full veil said in sworn statements submitted to Barin they fear having to remove the veil to receive government services.

One said she only uses the subway to get around because she dreads how bus drivers will react. She also only attends classes at McGill University because the institution said it wouldn’t force anyone to remove their veil.

Both say aggressive behaviour and insults have increased since the law took effect.

While the law calls for accommodation in certain cases, those provisions aren’t in force like the rest of the legislation.

Eric Cantin, lawyer for the province, argued there is a presumption that when a government passes a law, it is in the public interest. He said the plaintiffs didn’t provide enough evidence to show that wasn’t the case.

Cantin said the arguments made in the statements of the two Muslim women were weak and represented only “concerns” of possible discrimination.

He said according to their declarations, the women are able to receive the same services as they did before the law went into effect.

Lacoste told reporters after the hearing that Cantin is wrong with regards to his claim that the plaintiffs didn’t face actual discrimination.

“He doesn’t know what he’s talking about,” she said. “I invite him to walk in my shoes for one week.”

 

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Students who quit college because of strike can get tuition refund

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

And those who are staying enrolled can apply for up to $500 in financial aid, as government recognizes impact strike has had on student finances.

Students who quit college because of the five-week strike can get full tuition refunds, while those who are staying can apply for up to $500 in financial aid, Deb Matthews, the Minister for Advanced Education, said Monday.

The aid for full-time domestic and international students will cover unexpected costs such as child care, rebooked train and bus tickets and January rent.

“Over the past month, I have heard from students about hardships they have experienced as a result of this strike,” Matthews said in a statement issued as 12,000 faculty at colleges across the province reported for work following the passage of back-to-work legislation on Sunday.

Students return to class Tuesday and will see their semesters extended to Dec. 22, just three days before Christmas, meaning those who booked trips home may face additional fees to change their travel dates.

The aid money will come from the net savings colleges have from not paying their striking staff during the labour dispute. Students will apply to their college for the money. Applications are available later this week, the government said.

Payouts to students from the fund will not count against their Ontario Student Assistance Plan assessments.

Students receiving OSAP money who have their current semester extended and were likely to graduate by December 31 will receive additional assistance money for as long as their course program continues.

Any student deciding to quit college has two weeks to get a refund.

There are about 500,000 full- and part-time college students in Ontario.

 

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Police now ticketing drivers who break King Street Pilot rules

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

Const. Clint Stibbe said violators could be fined $110 and lose two demerit points.

Drivers caught violating the rules of the new King Street Pilot project will be fined, Toronto police say.

Const. Clint Stibbe of the Toronto Police Service’s traffic unit has said that, starting Monday morning, police would be handing out fines – not warnings.

He said on Twitter over the weekend that “thousands” of warnings had been issued to drivers who violated the rules of the new pilot project during last week’s grace period.

Drivers caught breaking the new rules will be fined $110 and receive two demerit points on their license, Stibbe said.

Police haven’t kept track of the exact number of informal warnings they’ve handed out to drivers. But Sgt. Brett Moore said “in the thousands is fair.”

He added that, despite the number of warnings, he has been “pleasantly surprised” at the number of people who are following the new rules.

 “The compliance, actually, is very good,” he said.

The new rules make it illegal for drivers to go straight through the length of King St., between Jarvis and Bathurst. New signage will encourage drivers to make right-hand turns off of King St., leaving the centre lane relatively open for streetcars.

TTC spokesperson Brad Ross previously told the Star it will likely take several weeks for everyone to adapt to the changes.

City staff have said that giving streetcars right-of-way will allow for more efficient movement of people downtown, because the majority of commuters who travel along King St. use transit. It also reduces car traffic and allows cyclists to ride down the curb lanes.

The pilot went into effect on Nov. 12 and is expected to last for a year.

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Canada Earns Bragging Rights in the G7 with its Top-Notch Economic Performance

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

 (Mississauga) Saturday, November 18, 2017— Peter Fonseca, Member of Parliament for Mississauga East-Cooksville, spent this constituency week connecting with local small business owners within our community, listening to the views and perspectives about the economy.

“Our economy will grow by 3.1 per cent this year. That’s the best result of any Group of Seven (G7) countries.”

MP Fonseca says “A strong economy is a proof of the hard-work done by Canadians; the government is committed to helping those that work hard for their success.”

The government is fulfilling its commitment to lower taxes for small businesses from 11% to a 9 per cent by 2019.

The combined federal-provincial-territorial tax rate for small business will be the lowest of any G7 country. Small business owners can expect savings of up to $7,500 annually.

Marcus from Nova Pastry & Bakery told MP Fonseca “hard work pays off. A lower tax rate will mean we can focus on growing and staying competitive.”

Canada has had a nice steady job increase.

Statistics Canada has released information that on average the economy is creating over 25,000 jobs per month, for a total of approximately 500,000 in the last two years. The government looks for small businesses to create jobs, a key source of good local jobs in communities across Canada.

Paul Tavora, owner of Tavora Foods, stated “I’m happy that the government has provided small business owners with a new tax break, I will be able to hire more employees.”

Unemployment in October was down to 6.3 per cent from 7.0 per cent just a year ago, the lowest it has been since 2008.

New legislation has delivered a reduction in the second personal income tax bracket from to 20.5 per cent from 22 per cent, while boosting the tax rate to 33 per cent for top earners, creating a tax cut that benefits the middle class.

Blue Ribbon Automobile Centre’s owner – Peter – was optimistic “it’s a competitive market out there, only the hard working and honest businesses survive, we welcome these changes.”

Businesses like these, and ones all around Mississauga East – Cooksville are the backbone of our community providing their goods and services and good quality jobs for our residents.

The measures which have been introduced in the past two years are designed to empower small business owners, strengthen the middle class Canadians to support local small businesses, and allow citizens across Canada to begin saving for their future.

“Our plan to invest in our people and in our communities is working. Canada’s economy is growing faster than it has in a decade, allowing us to do even more to help the middle class and those working hard to join it. With lower taxes on small business, more support for parents, and more money in the pockets of low-income workers, are working to grow the economy in a way that benefits all Canadians. And that is exactly what Canadians sent us here to do.”

-The Hon. Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance

“I want to thank all constituents that took the time to time to consult with me on the proposed changes. I know that lowering the small business tax will ensure that small business owners in Mississauga East – Cooksville have more money in their pockets at the end of the year so they can save, invest in themselves, create more jobs and grow our economy”

- Peter Fonseca, MP Mississauga East – Cooksville

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Wynne government must support college students let down by unprecedented strike: NDP Education Critic

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

QUEEN’S PARK—In question period on Wednesday, NDP Education Critic Peggy Sattler was determined to get answers for college students concerned that the strike at colleges throughout Ontario is costing them financially. She also raised concerns about how the impact of the strike on students’ career, family, financial and life plans is negatively affecting their mental health.

The labour dispute between college faculty and the College Employer Council is now in its fifth week, and a potential lawsuit is now in the works. Sattler said the legal move shows just how much Wynne has let students down – and how little they’re willing to trust her to take care of them going forward.

“Today college students will be demonstrating at Queen’s Park for a tuition refund, and yesterday a class action law suit was launched on behalf of the 500,000 Ontario college students whose classes were cancelled because of the strike,” said Sattler. “The lawsuit seeks to recover damages related to tuition, as well as meal plans and residence fees, because students are not getting what they paid for. This Liberal government’s failure to fund the college system appropriately [and] its failure to lead during this labour dispute has created a hot mess.”

New Democrats have consistently called on the Wynne Liberals to address their chronic underfunding of post-secondary education, which created conditions that resulted in the labour dispute. This systemic underfunding by consecutive Liberal and Conservative governments, resulting in the strike now in its fifth week, has also led to unprecedented stress for students who have career, family, financial and life plans on the line, leading to a crisis in student mental health.

Sattler noted that earlier this month, the College Student Alliance joined the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance, Colleges Ontario and Council of Ontario Universities at the Queen’s Park launch of “In It Together,” an action plan to address student mental health.  “The plan was developed through an unprecedented collaboration across the post-secondary sector, because of this Liberal government’s failure to deal with the crisis in student mental health, with rates that have more than more than doubled over the last five years,” said Sattler. “There is already a crisis in student mental health, and as this strike drags on, with no end in sight, we are hearing alarming stories of even more students being diagnosed with depression and anxiety. These students feel despair as they watch their futures slip away. They worry how they will ever manage the increased debt they will have to take on to complete their programs.”

“What specific plans has this government put in place to support the thousands of college students who are suffering, and whose mental health has been compromised because of this strike?” asked Sattler.

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Patrick Brown Promises to Roll Back Increased Minimum Wage

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

 

Ontarians Would Earn Less under Conservative Scheme

Well, he’s finally shown his true colours.

Patrick Brown has promised to roll back the $15 minimum wage and kick the increase down the road another four years.

Brown confirmed his plan to delay a pay increase for low-income earners while speaking at a York Region Business Breakfast overlooking the 18th green at a golf course today.

Even with the audience, he should know that Ontarians who are working full-time yet are struggling to pay rent, put food on the table or care for their families can’t afford to wait. For them, delaying a minimum wage increase is the same as denying one. And under the Conservative roll-back scheme, they’ll earn less.

That’s not fair.

The Ontario Liberal plan is different, phasing in a $15 minimum wage over 18 months. By tying increases to inflation afterwards, Ontarians could be earning upwards of $16 by 2022 too.

This ensures more workers are benefiting fairly from Ontario’s economic growth literally years before they would under the Conservatives. Together with free tuition, rent control, and OHIP+, our plan is another step towards increasing fairness and creating more opportunity.

In voting against and standing opposed to these progressive policies, the Conservatives are doing exactly what Ontarians expect of them.

Only the Ontario Liberals are willing to fight for fairness, standing with those who worry about falling behind even as they work so hard to get ahead.

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MP Sidhu and City of Brampton Proclaim November as Diabetes Awareness Month and November 14 as Diabetes Day

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

Proclamation will help combat the onset of Type 2 Diabetes in Bramptonians

BRAMPTON – Sonia Sidhu, Member of Parliament for Brampton South, was with the Mayor of Brampton at City Hall as Mayor Linda Jeffrey proclaimed November as Diabetes Awareness Month and November 14 as World Diabetes Day in the City of Brampton.

“This proclamation put forward by Mayor Jeffrey and the Council will go a long way in helping the people of Brampton by raising awareness” said MP Sidhu. “Brampton has one of the highest rates of diabetes in the Ontario, and the awareness this will bring by familiarizing people with diabetes warning signs and encouraging them to making healthy lifestyle choices will be instrumental in preventing the onset of Type 2 Diabetes”.

“This year on World Diabetes Day we come together to recognize the barriers women face when it comes to diabetes” said further MP Sidhu. “Whether it is access to education or access to treatment and care, women face many barriers unique to them due to their gender”.

In recognition of the challenges faced my women, attendants participated in forming the Blue Circle, a global symbol chosen by the International Diabetes Federation and World Health Organization that signifies the unity of the global diabetes community in response to the diabetes epidemic.

Following the proclamation, MP Sidhu challenged the Mayor of Brampton and City Councilors to a step challenge to raise awareness about the impact that increased physical activity has on reducing the onset of Type 2 diabetes. This challenge followed the challenge MP Sidhu issued to over 50 parliamentarians earlier in the month, including the Minister of Health, the Honourable Ginette Petitpas

World Diabetes Day was created in response to the escalating health threat posed by diabetes by the International Diabetes Federation and the World Health Organization and became an official United Nations Day in 2006 to be celebrated annually on November 14.

MP Sidhu has championed diabetes prevention and healthy living, through chairing the All Party Diabetes Caucus, and leading a national summer consultation.

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Alia Bhatt glows in Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla’s outfit

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

Alia Bhatt shines in Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla’s designer outfit at the Lokmat Maharashtra’s Most Stylish Awards 2017 in Mumbai. She looked chic in ivory flared sleeve crop top and nude embroidered lehenga skirt.

She styled her hair in Deepika Padukone’s style. Celebrity hairstylist Priyanka Borkar deserves credit for Alia’s hairdo. The ‘Highway’ actress is accessorised with stunning earnings by Curio Cottage which was a perfect blend of modern and ethnic style. Celebrity stylist Ami Patel is the man beind Alia Bhatt’s glam look at the event and he deserves full round of applause.

Make-up artist Puneet B Saini’s make-up was excellent. He put on nude shades and soft peach lip colour which gave Alia an altogether new look.

 

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‘Padmavati’ release date postponed, won’t hit the screens on Dec 1

Posted on 24 November 2017 by admin

Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s magnum opus ‘Padmavati’ has been postponed. It was earlier scheduled to release on December 1 but now the film has been pushed behind. The makers are yet to announce the new release date. With only 10 days to go, ‘Padmavati’ has not yet got the clearance from CBFC. Above all the film is facing protests from various communal groups across the country.

A spokesperson of Viacom 18 says, “The studio has voluntarily deferred the release date of Padmavati from December 1, 2017. Along with Sanjay Leela Bhansali, amongst the most gifted film makers of his generation, Viacom18 Motion Pictures has created a beautiful cinematic masterpiece in ‘Padmavati’ that captures Rajput valor, dignity and tradition in all its glory. The film is an eloquent portrayal of a tale that will fill every Indian with pride and showcase our country’s story-telling prowess across the globe. We are a responsible, law-abiding corporate citizen and have the highest respect and regard for the law of the land and all our institutions and statutory bodies including the Central Board of Film Certification.

We always have and are committed to continue following the established procedure and convention. We have faith that we will soon obtain the requisite clearances to release the film. We will announce the revised release date of the film in due course. We stand firm in our commitment to tell endearing tales that resonate with our audiences the world over as we have in the past with our other projects such as Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, Queen, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag and many more.”

It was earlier reported that censor board Chief Prasoon Joshi highly miffed with filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali for violating censor board rules. The makers send the periodic drama for CBFC certification but the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) sent the film back to the makers due to technical errors.

CBFC Chief Prasoon Joshi slammed the makers of ‘Padmavati’ for arranging screening of the film privately for selected individuals. He stated that that the film did not carry the ‘disclaimer’ that was needed and also mentioned that the makers cannot screen the film for anyone without Censor Board’s clearance.

New release date will be announced soon.

 

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