Shattering a glass ceiling and the Stampede returns: In The News for July 9

“Today is a victory, and you can tell all the women in your life that the glass ceiling has been broken. And I thank all of the women who touched that ceiling before me and made it crack. You are an inspiration to me.”

Archibald secured victory after her rival, Reginald Bellerose, who has been serving as Chief of Muskowekwan First Nation in Saskatchewan for the last 17 years, conceded. 

The election had stretched to a second day and went to a fifth round of voting after neither Archibald nor Bellerose received the necessary 60 per cent of votes to win.

But Bellerose then withdrew from the race before a sixth round of voting could begin. 

The AFN represents 634 First Nations with 900,000 members.

Archibald, who previously served as regional chief for Ontario, campaigned on a platform to build a solid post-pandemic recovery plan for First Nations.

She has also pledged to work with governments to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s 94 calls to action.

Also this …

COQUITLAM, B.C. — The federal government has reached a deal with British Columbia, the first in the Trudeau Liberals’ bid to build a national daycare system, and a move longtime advocates marked as “very good news” for families and the economy.

The deal aims to create 30,000 new spaces in B.C. in the next five years, with average fees for regulated spaces cut in half to $21 per day by the end of 2022 and hitting $10 per day in for children under six by 2027.

Funding is also being targeted at low-income, Indigenous, Black and newcomer families.

In making the announcement, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the pandemic has laid bare that it is practically impossible for parents, especially mothers, to build a career without good child care.

“Hard-working families deserve better and our economy deserves better as well,” he said. “This is exactly what a feminist recovery looks like.”

B.C. is the first to sign on to the Liberal offer laid out in April’s federal budget, which pledged $27.2 billion over five years in new spending that the government aims to send to provinces to subsidize daycares.

Child-care advocates had viewed the first deal on the national system as the benchmark for others. Advocates are now casting their eyes out east, such as Atlantic Canada, for another deal in the coming weeks.

And this …

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada will say this morning how the job market fared in June after two months of job losses in April and May when companies shed staff during a third wave of lockdowns.

The economy lost 68,000 jobs in May and more dropped out of the labour force altogether after an April when 207,000 jobs were lost.

The result for May left the country about 571,100 jobs, or three per cent, below pre-pandemic levels seen in February 2020.

Economists expect the June labour force survey to show an increase in employment as restrictions rolled back nationwide.

CIBC senior economist Royce Mendes says there may also be an increase in the number of workers looking for jobs, after thousands gave up the job search in May.

He writes that June may only be the appetizer for the summer hiring season with larger gains potentially showing up later in the summer as more of the economy reopens.

What we are watching in the U.S. …

WASHINGTON —The Biden administration has unveiled new efforts to help protect voting rights.

The move comes as complaints grow louder from civil rights activists and other Democrats that the White House has not done enough to fight the push from several Republican-led state legislatures to restrict access to the ballot. 

President Joe Biden met with civil rights leaders in the West Wing on Thursday, while Vice President Kamala Harris announced $25 million in new spending by the Democratic National Committee to support efforts to protect voting access ahead of the 2022 midterm elections. 

The administration is facing a call to “save American democracy.”

Also this …

SURFSIDE, Fla. — Rescue workers now focused on finding remains instead of survivors in a Florida condominium collapse are vowing to keep up their search for victims until they have cleared all the rubble. 

Surfside Mayor Charles Burkett on Thursday quoted a fire official as saying crews will not stop until they’ve gotten to the bottom of the pile and recovered every victim. 

Meanwhile, the death toll rose to 64, with another 76 people unaccounted for. 

One Canadian is confirmed among the dead, while three others remain among the missing.

Separately, Paraguay’s foreign minister said in a radio report late Thursday that the body of the sister of that country’s first lady was among those found. 

Several Latin American citizens were reported in the building when it collapsed.

What we are watching in the rest of the world …

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Seventeen suspects have been detained so far in the stunning assassination of Haiti’s president.

Haitian authorities say two of the suspects are believed to hold dual U.S.-Haitian citizenship and Colombia’s government says at least six are former soldiers in its army. 

The chief of Haiti’s National Police said last night that eight more suspects were being sought and three others had been killed by police. Officials had earlier said seven were killed. 

Colombia’s government says it was asked about six of the suspects in Haiti, including two of those killed, and determined they were retired Colombian soldiers, though it hasn’t released their identities. 

Haitian officials identified two of the detainees as Haitian Americans, but gave no details beyond their names.

And this …

TOKYO — Fans will be banned from Tokyo-area stadiums and arenas when the Olympics begin in two weeks, the city’s governor said Thursday after meeting with organizers of the pandemic-postponed games.

That means the Olympics will be a largely TV-only event, after the Japanese government put the capital under a COVID-19 state of emergency because of rising new infections and the highly contagious delta variant.

The declaration was made by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, and the spectator ban was agreed to by Japanese Olympic organizers, the International Olympic Committee, the International Paralympic Committee, and the metropolitan government of Tokyo.

It is a serious blow for Japanese taxpayers and local organizers of the games, which already had been postponed from 2020 by the coronavirus. 

Hundreds of millions of dollars in ticket revenue will be lost, and that must be made up by the government.

On this day in 1793 … Upper Canada, now Ontario, prohibited the importation of slaves and ruled that slaves’ children should be freed at age 25. But it wasn’t until 1833 that slavery was finally outlawed by the British Parliament.

In Sports …

WIMBLEDON, Eng. — Canada’s Denis Shapovalov will look to defy the odds when he faces the world’s Number 1 player in the Wimbledon semifinal.

The 22-year-old will play top-seed Novak Djokovic today at the All England Club with a spot in the Grand Slam final on the line.

The 34-year-old Djokovic has won 19 major titles — just one shy of the record held jointly by Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal — and has captured five Wimbledon titles alone, including the last two at the All England Club. Meanwhile, Shapovalov is in a Slam semi for the first time in his career.

Djokovic has already won this year’s Australian Open and French Open, and has a 6-0 advantage in head-to-head meetings with the 10th-seeded Canadian. 

Djokovic’s most recent win over Shapovalov came at the ATP Cup at Melbourne, Australia in January. They have met once at a Grand Slam, with Shapovalov falling in the third round of the 2019 Australian Open. That same year they faced off in the final of the prestigious Paris Masters, with Djokovic winning.

Shapovalov is looking to become the first Canadian to win a men’s Grand Slam singles title. Milos Raonic reached the Wimbledon final in 2016 before falling to Andy Murray. Bianca Andreescu became the first Canadian Grand Slam singles winner when she beat Serena Williams in the final of the 2019 U.S. Open.

In entertainment …

CALGARY — The rides are up, the stuffed animals are displayed at the games tables and concession booths are loaded with supplies.

Forced by the pandemic to cancel last year for the first time in its history, the Calgary Stampede has returned.

The setup may look familiar but, due to COVID-19, there are some notable changes to the 10-day celebration of cowboy life.

The walkways are wider, there are markers showing proper spacing in lineups and fewer rides.

“We wanted to spread this out, create more social-distancing space, so we brought less rides to achieve that goal,” said Scooter (Greg) Korek, vice-president of client services for North American Midway Entertainment.

New safety measures adopted by the Stampede include cutting daily attendance in half, sanitation stations for the public and enhanced cleaning throughout the grounds. Staff and volunteers are required to wear masks and get COVID-19 rapid tests. 

The chuckwagon races aren’t being held and the parade to kick off the Stampede is confined to the grounds without the public in attendance. 


TORONTO — Toronto researchers have developed a tool they say can help doctors determine who is most likely to suffer concussion symptoms that persist months after injury.

The experts hope their calculator can help identify high-risk patients who require additional monitoring, noting a raft of sometimes debilitating symptoms that can include headache, dizziness, neck pain, concentration problems, absentmindedness and irritability.

Scientists from Unity Health Network introduced the calculator today. It’s meant to be used on adult patients and generates risk scores based on their answers to five questions.

The tool is based on research that looked at data on past concussion patients in Ontario. Researchers found that 12.5 per cent experienced prolonged post-concussion symptoms, which can include anything that persist three months after injury.

Dr. Mark Bayley, the medical director at U-H-N’s Toronto Rehab, said the number is likely around 15 per cent when accounting for those who had extended symptoms but didn’t seek additional care.

Researchers determined that people older than 61 years of age and adults with “high levels of health-care usage” in the year before their concussion were higher risk of prolonged symptoms, while those with a history of psychiatric disorders, anxiety or depression were at highest risk.

The findings were published yesterday in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS Medicine.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 9, 2021

The Canadian Press

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