Over a dozen celebrities and Cumulus Media have come together to help the innovative, Ohio-based Veterans Matter program kick off a campaign on Memorial Day to help house as many of the 57,000 homeless veterans as possible, as soon as possible.Video: Ice-T: Veterans Matter“Thousands of veterans are homeless and living on the streets of our nation tonight. Streets where they are being beaten, robbed, even killed. Let’s take care of our own,” says Ice-T of the Veterans Matter campaign to house veterans.The program’s growing roster of support includes: • Darius Rucker • Darryl Worley • Dusty Hill • Emerson Drive • Heart • Ice-T • Jennifer Nettles • John Fogerty • John Mellencamp • Kid Rock • Kix Brooks • Mitch Albom • Natalie Stovall+The Drive • Stevie NicksEach has voiced public services announcements now airing on Cumulus Media properties nationwide urging all Americans to help our nation’s homeless veterans get housed.Text “VETS” to 41444 and click through to donate any amount on their credit card.Or donate online at the organizations website, veteransmatter.org.The Veterans Matter program was started in 2012 in Toledo, Ohio, by Ken Leslie, a once homeless activist who had become aware that the primary obstacle facing many local homeless veterans eligible for long-term housing assistance was the lack of a rental deposit. Veterans Matter was created as a simple solution to that simple problem by paying the deposit directly to landlord and has expanded to help house veterans in six states.The program’s simplicity and demonstrated success rate attracted the attention of Dusty Hill of ZZ Top and John Mellencamp, who each helped raise funds to house homeless veterans in their home states, accounting for a significant portion of the almost $250,000 raised so far. 100% of the money raised goes to the program, as overhead costs are donated in-kind by Leslie’s company and other friends. 1Matters.org, a local non-profit that attained national visibility when John Mellencamp visited Toledo some years ago, is the fiscal agent for the program.“Cumulus, the artists, and all of those involved in helping Veterans Matter are here because they fought for us. Now we fight for them. Veterans Matter,” Leslie said.Source:PR Newswire
Helena Bonham Carter and Make-A-Wish Foundation UK recently made a teenage girl with a serious condition very happy.Shealyn Magill and Helena Bonham CarterCredit/Copyright: Make-A-Wish UK15-year-old Shealyn Magill was born with a severe heart condition. Over the last year her health has deteriorated and she has been unable to carry out her big passion – acting.Shealyn has always admired Helena Bonham Carter for the quirky characters that she plays and aspires to take on similar roles, so when Make-A-Wish asked Shealyn what her wish would be, she chose to meet her favourite actress!Shealyn, from Ballymena, first had heart surgery at 10 months old which sustained her for six years, and in 2005 she had a heart valve transplant. In June 2013, Shealyn was told she was still in heart failure, that her valve was leaking and that she had a swollen left ventricle. This meant her vertebrae twisted and she developed scoliosis. In September 2013 Shealyn had a mechanical valve implant, but has been told she may need a heart transplant.Shealyn arrived at The Dorchester and was taken to the ‘Sleeping Beauty’ Penthouse for afternoon tea with Helena. They chatted like old friends for hours about Shealyn’s condition and Helena’s acting career. When the afternoon came to an end Helena presented Shealyn with a special edition of a replica wand used by Bellatrix in Harry Potter! Shealyn had bought Helena a gift too – a Celtic brooch she designed herself, which Helena put on straight away!Shealyn told us: “Helena has inspired me to keep going. The wish had a huge impact as I have been feeling very down about the fact that I am in heart failure, however the wish gave me a boost when I needed it most.”Helena said: “Shealyn talks about me being an inspiration but she is the real one, together with her sister and mother. It was my privilege to meet and spend time with her. I’ve often thought pretending for a living is not the most useful or grown up ways of spending one’s life, but if I can make an iota of difference to someone’s life just by meeting them then I feel for once it was a day well spent. Make-A-Wish is an extraordinary charity that makes magical encounters happen. And trust me, the magic works both ways.”Shealyn’s mum, Clare, added: “The wish provided a positive light in Shealyn’s life. She often doesn’t like people knowing about her condition, but meeting Helena allowed her to embrace who she is in front of someone she really admires.”To find out how you can help Make-A-Wish make more wishes come true, click here.Source:Make-A-Wish UK
Entertainment industry icons and climate activists Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, James Cameron and Li Bingbing star in a groundbreaking series of public service announcements to inspire individual climate action against the backdrop of uncertainty in the environmental movement wrought by the election of Donald Trump to the White House.Video: ‘Less Meat Less Heat’ starring Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (WILDAID | 5 To Do Today)The president-elect has previously claimed that climate change is a hoax perpetuated by the Chinese, leaving an opening for China to establish itself as the global leader in sustainability and the booming renewables industry. With low levels of public awareness on the climate impact of diet, the PSAs aim to empower Chinese consumers to make everyday choices that can help curb climate change.The PSAs, produced by WildAid’s China-based 5 To Do Today climate program and expected to reach tens of millions of people across China, come at a tenuous time for the global movement to mitigate climate change as the U.S.’s own climate ambitions are called into question. Chinese officials recently warned Trump that he would be defying the wishes of the entire planet if he were to follow through on his campaign promise to back out of the Paris climate agreement.“With the recent election results, it will likely be up to China to ensure progress on reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” said WildAid Executive Director Peter Knights. “The Chinese government has every incentive to continue its impressive transition to a greener economy and we support that effort by encouraging climate-friendly behavior at the individual level.”The PSAs promote eating less meat as an essential part of climate change mitigation. Animal agriculture accounts for an estimated 14.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and emissions from this fast-growing sector are largely unregulated. Due to its population and rapid economic growth, China is essential to any efforts to curb GHG emissions: the nation consumes 28% of all the world’s meat, about half of the world’s pork and is projected to add the equivalent of the total United States consumption to global demand for meat between 2010 and 2030.“With climate deniers now running the show, it’s more important than ever for people of conscience to fight climate change by doing everything we can as individuals,” said director James Cameron. “One of the most powerful things we can do is to stop eating meat, dairy and other animal foods. Animal agriculture produces more greenhouse warming than transportation — more than all cars, trucks, planes, trains and ships combined. We don’t have to bemoan the inaction of a denier government — we can solve this ourselves.”According to Chatham House and the Proceedings from the National Academy of Sciences, the current level of meat consumption is not sustainable and has a tremendous impact on societal health and the environment. By 2050, global consumption of meat and dairy products are expected to rise 76 percent and 65 percent respectively. Several studies confirm that current agricultural practices are a hugely inefficient use of land and water, driving deforestation, biodiversity loss and many other environmental crises.A survey shows that the Chinese public may be receptive to some dietary shifts. Eighty-eight percent of respondents were aware that meat consumption was unhealthy, while 40 percent were aware of the associated GHG emissions. Overall, 83 percent of respondents were willing to eat vegetarian at least one day each week for their health and the planet, with 62 percent willing to eat vegetarian two or more days each week.“As much as we in California and the United States have been leaders and have inspired China to go in the right direction with environmental issues, they are now inspiring us,” former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said an interview with 5 To Do Today released in June.The PSAs will appear in Mandarin on 5 To Do Today media partner outlets in China including on Beijing TV, Shenzhen TV, and other Chinese TV networks, and promoted online by China’s most popular video sites including Iqiyi and LeTV. The PSAs support the adoption of a healthy diet in line with the Chinese Nutrition Society’s Recommended Dietary Guidelines, which suggest limiting annual meat consumption to 27.4 kg per person, compared to current average of 63 kg in China.
Advertisement Advertisement Twitter She will be the guest star on an episode of Law & Order – Special Victims Unit. This spinoff of Law and Order has been airing on the NBC network for 18 years. On February 15, 6.9 million Americans watched the 11th episode of the season live.A strong characterIn the episode No surrender, she interprets the role of Captain Beth Williams, a woman with a strong character serving in the military. “She finds herself in vulnerable situations, but she is a person who is able to shoulder the burden,” she outlines. “She doesn’t react in a typical way to situations involving sexual aggression. It’s as though she has been trained to deal with torture or that kind of aggression.” Advertisement As a teenager in Ormstown, Sarah Hansen Booth used to watch Law and Order – Special Victims Unit. This Wednesday, she will appear in an episode of a program that captivates more than six million American viewers each week.“I recently moved to Los Angeles with my husband [director and producer Gavin Michael Booth], to follow our dreams,” stated the actor. “Landing this role in the United States on the NBC network is huge. It’s going to give me so much exposure.”By the end of her audition, however, her expectations were not very high. “I did my audition with my iPhone and sent the clip to New York where shooting was taking place,” explained Hansen Booth. The next morning, I heard from my agents that the production team was very interested. They just wanted to know if I was ready to cut my hair and I didn’t have to do a second audition.” Login/Register With: Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment
Login/Register With: Advertisement Advertisement “We are very pleased that Sandi Richter Cooper has accepted this opportunity to lead Creative BC’s production services,” said Prem Gill, Chief Executive Officer, Creative BC. “As BC Film Commissioner, Sandi’s relationships, knowledge and hands-on experience in BC’s motion picture industry, from physical production to virtual reality, will support the needs of our domestic and international producers alike.”Past roles include her most recent position as Executive Producer, launching a Canadian subsidiary for virtual reality startup VRCinematic, which now provides demo VR content at the Telus Innovation Lab. Previous to this, she was Partner and Executive Talent Manager at Strategic Transitions Inc., consulting to founders and C-level executives from the major networks, studios, agencies and media tech companies on matters related to their professional careers and deal flow.Previously, Sandi has also spent time as: Executive Producer at Canwest Global’s commercial production house, Apple Box Productions; Executive Producer at Blue Zone, a convergence company that won a first-in-its-category Gemini award for CTVnews.com; Executive Producer at major-league sports marketing firm Channel 1 Media Solutions; an Independent Producer developing a slate of film projects for her own company, Sapphire Entertainment.In bringing a strong on-the-ground presence to BC’s film industry, Sandi will work closely with Creative BC’s current and Acting Film Commissioner, Robert Wong, whose priorities as Vice President will remain focused on the delivery of Creative BC’s development funding programs, tax credit administration, international collaborations and marketing initiatives.About Creative BC Creative BC is an independent society created and supported by the Province of BC to sustain and help grow BC’s creative sector (film and television, digital and interactive media, music, and magazine and book publishing industries). The society delivers a wide range of programs and services to expand BC’s creative economy. These include the administration of the provincial government’s tax credit programs for film and television; development funding and export marketing support; and motion picture production services to attract inward investment and market BC as a destination for domestic and international production. The society acts as an industry catalyst and ambassador to help BC’s creative sector reach its economic and creative potential both at home and globally.Stay up to date with initiatives from Creative BC.Twitter: @creativebcs Facebook: /creativebcsInstagram: @creativebcs Website: www.creativebc.com Advertisement VANCOUVER B.C. (March 29, 2017) – Today, Creative BC is pleased to announce the appointment of Sandi Richter Cooper as the next BC Film Commissioner and Director of Production Services. Reporting to Prem Gill, Chief Executive Officer, she will lead Creative BC’s production services team in the delivery of provincial film commission services, from locations marketing and physical production resource support, to industry and community relations services. Sandi will join the organization on May 1, 2017.Through this role, Creative BC will continue to support ongoing collaboration between the many industry and government stakeholders who contribute to British Columbia’s successful motion picture industry. These include eight regional film commissions, industry and labour organizations, and government at all levels – from provincial ministries and agencies to the 33 municipal film offices (12 outside Metro Vancouver) and the Province’s Los Angeles-based BC film marketing and trade office.With a hands-on career as an executive producer, strategic consultant and independent producer, Sandi’s broad knowledge and relationship base will be an asset and a complement to Creative BC’s current expert in-house team. She brings over 25 years of industry knowledge from across the creative industries and has spent the majority of her professional career between Vancouver and Los Angeles. Her leadership roles in production have spanned film, television, and commercials, as well as next-generation media technology, from mobile apps to virtual reality. Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitter
BURLINGTON, ON and MONTREAL, QC – Edge Imaging and Walter Capital Partners are pleased to announce a significant investment to accelerate the growth of the largest Canadian owned school photography company headquartered in Burlington, Ontario into a truly national brand. Advertisement Moving forward, Dave Pond will maintain his position as President of Edge Imaging wherein he will focus on strategic initiatives as well as sit on the Board of Directors. Dan Boudreau, a Senior Executive with over 25 years of experience in the school photography industry, has been appointed as Chief Executive Officer of Edge Imaging. Mr. Boudreau will be working in partnership with Mr. Pond to drive success as Edge Imaging expands across Canada.About Edge ImagingBased in Burlington, Ontario Edge Imaging is the largest Canadian owned school photography company. In business since 2005, the fully vertically integrated company prides itself in delivering exceptional photography products, a great customer experience and leading the industry when it comes to the privacy and security. At the height of its business cycle, Edge Imaging employs over 400 people in Ontario and British Columbia.About Walter Capital PartnersWalter Capital Partners (Walter Capital) is a private equity firm and part of Walter Financial and the Walter Group of Companies. Walter Capital invests capital and know-how in established small and medium-sized businesses to help accelerate their growth. Drawing on the entrepreneurial values of the Walter Group and the business leadership experience of its Managing Partners, Walter Capital offers solutions that are above and beyond purely financial transactions. Headquartered in Montreal, Walter Capital provides a solid international network. Advertisement Facebook “We are very enthusiastic to partner with Edge Imaging to share our capital and expertise to foster their growth,” states Managing Partner Sam Ramadori of Walter Capital Partners. “For this new investment, we have found a senior leadership team who shares our values and vision for the future potential of school photography. Together, we will put all the ingredients in place to replicate the successes we have had with the companies in our portfolio.”“The future of school photography is bright, and we couldn’t be happier to move Edge forward with Walter Capital Partners,” shares Dave Pond, President and CEO of Edge Imaging. “It was very important for us to join forces with a like-minded investment partner who is just as committed as we are to both the growth of the company and the team that helped us achieve the success we’ve had to date. Along with the monetary investment, the knowledge and expertise that Walter Capital Partners brings will allow us to invest in the right equipment, technology and people to accelerate our growth plan.” LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: Advertisement Twitter
APTN National NewsThe man picked to chair a public inquiry into how police investigated the Robert Pickton case is responding to calls for his resignation.Wally Oppal was a former attorney general for British Columbia.Critics say he’s too close to the provincial government to be considered impartial and should resign.They say Oppal has previously rejected having an inquiry and often defended the actions of police.
APTN National NewsThe federal New Democratic Party is calling for an independent investigation into the department of Aboriginal Affairs and Justice Canada’s conduct at the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal.On Wednesday, the tribunal panel accused both departments of knowingly misleading the tribunal and the parties involved in a discrimination case against the government.“The government has obligations at this tribunal,” said NDP Aboriginal Affairs critic Jean Crowder. “And they are well aware of them and they have disregarded those obligations.”The tribunal is hearing a case brought on by the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society and the Assembly of First Nations. Both accuse Canada of spending less on First Nations child welfare than what provincial governments spend for non-First Nations children.The controversy is around tens of thousands of documents relevant to the case that Canada failed to disclose to the tribunal and the parties involved. The discovery of the 50,000 documents only came after Cindy Blackstock, executive director of the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society, became curious about the lack of information being disclosed by Canada at the hearing.In the fall of 2012, Blackstock filed an access to information request to Aboriginal Affairs. In April 2013, she received a compact disc containing thousands of records dealing with First Nations child welfare agencies across the country and information regarding some of the witnesses who had already testified at the tribunal for the case.When Blackstock cross-referenced the information to what the government had disclosed, she found that the information was no where to be found.“There needs to be an investigation into the procedure,” said Crowder. “Who made the decisions? If the access to information hadn’t come up, those documents may never have come to light.”The tribunal panel overseeing the case chastised the government for its lack of transparency.In a ruling released Wednesday the panel wrote: “The respondent (Canada), knew of the existence of a number of these documents, prejudicial to its case and highly relevant in the summer of 2012 and yet failed to disclose them.”According to the panel, the government knew back in October 2012 that it would miss its deadline to disclose the records set for February 25, 2013. It was informed by the company it hired, Public History Inc., that it was at risk of missing its deadline because of the vast amount of information it was sifting through.The government hired a second company to assist in the procedure. Canadian Development Consultants Inc. that also informed the government in March of 2013 that it would not have a package ready until the end of September.“It is deeply troubling that the federal government continues to delay and obstruct an inquiry aimed at achieving fairness, justice and safety for First Nations children,” said Jonathan Thompson, director of Child Welfare for the Assembly of First Nations.”The panel noted in its Wednesday ruling that Canada had several opportunities to inform the tribunal and the parties of the extent of the information and the delays but failed to do so, “had the respondent communicated the challenges it faced in obtaining these large amount of disclosure, the tribunal, with the parties, could have worked together to find a solution. The respondent has denied this opportunity to everyone and forced the tribunal, to put it bluntly, into a mode of damage control.”“The lengths to which this government will go to avoid accountability and responsibility is simply astonishing,” said Liberal Aboriginal Affairs critic Carolyn Bennett. “Their priorities are crystal clear in this case: political damage control is more important to them than the wellbeing of Aboriginal children. Canadians should and will be disgusted by this.”Now months behind schedule, the hearings into the discrimination case will resume in September.Cindy Blackstock supports a call for an independent investigation but only on certain conditions.“I would very much welcome an independent review so long as it respects the integrity of the tribunal process,” said Blackstock. “It is very concerning to me that in a case impacting 161,000 children that the Government of Canada has repeatedly tried to derail the tribunal hearings using procedural technicalities and within the past month has been found responsible for violating both the Privacy Act and tribunal disclosure rules in relation to the child welfare case.”APTN asked the department of Aboriginal Affairs to respond to the allegations leveled by the tribunal panel. Instead, the following statement was sent by the department.“Our Government believes that the best way to ensure First Nations children and families get the support and services they need is by working together – with First Nations, provinces and territories. To date, the government has provided 158,000 pages of relevant material to the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal and we will continue to abide by their rules and procedures by ensuring that all documents relevant to the proceedings are provided.”email@example.com
OTTAWA – Nikkie Edwards and her boyfriend make about $31,000 a year, a sum that leaves them below the poverty line as defined by Statistics Canada — and in the company of another 4.8 million people, according to the latest census numbers released Wednesday.Of those, 1.2 million Canadians are children under 18 — including their 10-month-old daughter, Isabelle.The agency defines the so-called low-income measure, or LIM, as household earnings of less than half the national median income — $22,133 for a single person, or $38,335 for a family of three — as part of its latest glimpse into life in poverty in Canada.But the measure is not a perfect way of determining the poverty threshold, in part because it can’t take into account the often complex financial circumstances many families are forced into: Edwards, for instance, lives rent-free with her boyfriend’s parents.But the newest census data, based on tax information from 2015, the most recent year available, forms a baseline for the federal Liberal government, which has vowed to slash child poverty, reduce inequality and find a way to help parents like Edwards obtain better child care.Internal government estimates pegged this year’s child poverty rate at between 11.7 and 13 per cent, based on the LIM. Data for this year to measure the impact of the Liberal’s $23-billion-a-year child benefit program won’t be available for at least three more years.“There have been positive steps, as well as positive signals of what is planned to address child poverty, but there is unfinished business,” said Anita Khanna, national co-ordinator of Campaign 2000, which pushes governments to eradicate child poverty in Canada.“There is a path we can follow that can bring us to the point of eradication.”It has been 28 years since the House of Commons vowed in 1989 to end child poverty by the year 2000.Statistics Canada reported that in 2015, 17 per cent of Canadian children under age 18 lived in low-income households, a figure that has stayed virtually unchanged for a decade even as median incomes have steadily gone up across the country.“The fact that low income is stable means that people at the bottom of the (income) distribution are more or less keeping up with that growth,” said Andrew Heisz, assistant director in Statistics Canada’s income statistics division.“They’re not growing faster, but they’re not also falling behind.”In seven of Canada’s biggest cities, one in every five children was living in a low-income household in 2015.Moreover, children in lone-parent households were three-and-a-half times more likely to live in poverty than their counterparts in two-parent families, even as the number of low-income, single-parents has declined since the late 1990s.Meanwhile, the percentage of seniors living in poverty rose between 2005 and 2015, when 14.5 per cent of Canadians over 65 were living below the low-income measure, an increase from the 12 per cent recorded in 2005.Children living in resource-rich Alberta, where commodity prices fuelled some of the largest gains in median incomes nationwide, were less likely to live in low-income conditions than anywhere else in Canada — only 12.8 per cent of kids there were living in poverty.In Quebec, second behind Alberta at 14.3 per cent, studies show a robust child care and child benefits program has boosted the employment of women over 20 and helped cut low-income rates, despite the fact the province has among the lowest median income in the country.The Liberal government’s new child benefit was designed to slash child poverty rates further, particularly in places like Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, which had the highest provincial child poverty rate at 22.2 per cent.In hard-hit Windsor, Ont., the child poverty rate topped out at 24 per cent, the highest of any Canadian municipality, as a result of a deep and persistent decline in the manufacturing sector.The situation has spurred Edwards, 23, to become politically active, joining the social activist group Acorn to lobby the federal government for better child care funding so struggling parents are better able to work and cover daycare costs.“I just believe that if I gave up and didn’t fight, nothing would be done,” she said. “If we keep walking away and turning the other cheek and ignoring it, things will never change.”
ALBANY, N.Y. – State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced a civil rights investigation on Monday into The Weinstein Co. following sexual harassment and assault allegations against its co-founder, Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.As part of the investigation, the prosecutor’s office issued a subpoena seeking company records on harassment complaints and legal settlements to determine whether any civil rights and anti-discrimination laws were broken.“No New Yorker should be forced to walk into a workplace ruled by sexual intimidation, harassment or fear,” said Schneiderman, a Democrat. “If sexual harassment or discrimination is pervasive at a company, we want to know.”The New York City-based company fired Weinstein on Oct. 8 after The New York Times and The New Yorker exposed allegations of sexual assault and harassment spanning decades.More than three dozen women, including Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie, have publicly accused the entertainment mogul of abuse. Weinstein has denied allegations of nonconsensual sex.A woman who answered the phone in The Weinstein Co.’s media relations office said the company had no comment on the subpoena or news of the investigation.One of Weinstein’s former assistants in London, Zelda Perkins, spoke to the Financial Times about what she said was repeated sexual harassment toward her. Weinstein walked around nude in front of her, asked her to be in the room when he bathed and the producer would often try to pull her into bed when she went into his room to wake him up.She told the paper she split a £250,000 settlement with another woman who she claimed was sexually assaulted by the producer.Perkins told the paper for a story published Monday that she was required to sign a non-disclosure agreement — a copy of which she was not allowed to keep.“I want to publicly break my non-disclosure agreement,” she said. “Unless somebody does this there won’t be a debate about how egregious these agreements are and the amount of duress that victims are put under. My entire world fell in because I thought the law was there to protect those who abided by it.”She sought legal advice after a colleague, who she did not name in the story, told her Weinstein sexually assaulted her at the Venice Film Festival in 1998.Perkins, who had declined comment to The Associated Press through her current employer, said the settlement agreement called for Weinstein to undergo counselling and called for a harassment reporting procedure to be set up at Weinstein’s then-company, Miramax.Emails seeking comment from the Walt Disney Co., which owns Miramax, and Weinstein’s representative Sallie Hofmeister were not immediately returned. Hofmeister has said Weinstein denies all allegations of non-consensual sex.Police in Los Angeles, New York City and London are also investigating Harvey Weinstein over allegations of sex abuse in those cities.The Oscar winner was expelled from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and the Producers Guild of America has started the process of expelling him.The allegations have prompted calls in Albany to use the power of the state to crack down on harassment. Democratic Assemblywoman Nily Rozic of Queens proposed legislation that would make designers, photographers, retailers and others liable for harassment experienced by models.Another lawmaker, Democratic Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal of Manhattan, proposed legislation that would make companies ineligible for state tax incentives if they fail to address chronic harassment problems in the workplace.Also Monday, ABC News said Ashley Judd will talk to anchor Diane Sawyer for Judd’s first TV interview since the actress-activist went public with allegations against Weinstein. The interview will air Thursday on ABC News platforms including “Good Morning America” and “Nightline.”Judd has described an incident two decades ago in which she said he invited her to his hotel room, greeted her wearing a bathrobe and asked if she would watch him shower.“Good Morning America” aired an interview with Matt Damon and George Clooney on Monday where both acknowledged they were aware of allegations Weinstein had slept with actresses, but not that he had assaulted them. Clooney described him in the interview as “a predator.”“I knew he was an (expletive),” Damon said. “He was proud of that. … I knew he was a womanizer. I wouldn’t want to be married to the guy, but it’s not my business really. But this level of criminal sexual predation is not something that I ever thought was going on.”In more Weinstein fallout, a fired Nickelodeon producer facing allegations of sexual harassment expressed regret over his behaviour. Chris Savino, creator of the animated series “The Loud House,” posted the apology Monday on his Facebook page.“I am deeply sorry and I am ashamed,” he wrote. “Although it was never my intention, I now understand that the impact of my actions and communications created an unacceptable environment.”Savino has been accused of sexual harassment by up to 12 women, according to the website Cartoon Brew, which reports on animation industry news.Last week, Nickelodeon said it took allegations of misconduct seriously and that Savino was no longer working with the children’s TV channel.___AP Television Writers Frazier Moore in New York and Lynn Elber and Film Writer Lindsey Bahr in Los Angeles contributed to this story.
MONTREAL – Management at the ABI aluminum smelter in Becancour, Que., agreed on Friday to restart negotiations with its 1,030 locked-out employees.The announcement was made by Quebec Labour Minister Dominique Vien, who told reporters she had “satisfactory” meetings with both sides at her office in Quebec City.“Very good meetings, we are very satisfied,” she said. “Both sides are aware of the economic issues and they are ready to sit down again.”Management at the ABI smelter locked out its employees on Jan. 11. The smelter is 75 per cent owned by Pittsburgh-based Alcoa Corp. and 25 per cent by Montreal-headquartered Rio Tinto Alcan Inc.A mediator is expected to contact both sides and schedule a meeting, Vien said, adding the dispute is between a private company and its employees and the government can’t interfere.She said, however, that she asked both sides to choose representatives who are competent to negotiate and who have a mandate to reach a deal.The union said Friday it has never stopped wanting to negotiate.Alain Croteau, head of the Quebec section of the United Steelworkers, said “we have been waiting for a call for one month.”Local union president Clement Masse said “as soon as the employer says they are ready to return to the negotiating tale, we will return.”Masse said he’s ready to work on the company’s offer but he won’t submit the same one that was recently rejected by 80 per cent of his members.
WASHINGTON – The United States has confirmed a breakthrough in the NAFTA negotiations unlocking a major irritant involving automobiles, while stressing that a few remaining disagreements need to be settled before a deal is concluded.A sense of optimism that the unofficial No. 1 issue in the NAFTA talks might be close to resolution lifted the Canadian dollar more than a cent Wednesday, while the U.S. trade czar confirmed the positive developments on autos.“We’re finally starting to converge,” Robert Lighthizer said, while delivering a progress report to the U.S. Congress.“I think we’re in a pretty good place.”The U.S. is pushing for a deal within weeks. Otherwise, the process risks being punted into 2019. By mid-spring, it will be too late to complete the legal steps that would allow a ratification vote in the U.S. before midterm elections usher in a new Congress.Lighthizer summarized the state of the talks this way: “I believe that we have made a great deal of progress — but we still have a ways to go. I have urged our trading partners to recognize that time is short if we are to complete a deal in time for consideration by this Congress.”Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Wednesday he believes that a deal is “eminently possible.”“There seems to be a certain momentum around the table now that I certainly take as positive,” he said at a Toronto news conference.That said, serious irritants remain.The blunt-spoken Lighthizer minced no words while listing several of them — he referred specifically to Canadian policies on dairy, culture, wine, and intellectual property. Dispute settlement rules and Buy American issues are also sticking points.— Of Canada’s intellectual-property rules, Lighthizer said: “Canada has Third World intellectual property protection. Getting them to accept First World is not easy.” In its annual report on the topic, the U.S. lists its main concerns as Canada’s enforcement of counterfeit crimes, and its looser rules for educational exemptions.— On cultural protections: A lawmaker complained that Canada has abused the exemption on cultural products. He referred to Canada’s blocking the QVC shopping network on cultural grounds. Lighthizer replied: “There’s a legitimate case for some cultural exceptions. But it’s not for this kind of thing. … The cultural exemption is very often just cultural protectionism.” Trudeau, though, tied culture to bilingualism, “which highlights just how incredibly important it is for us to protect our culture, our languages, our creative sectors, our artists.”— Online shopping: The U.S. wants more online purchases of American goods. Lighthizer ridiculed the disparity between what the U.S. allows citizens to import duty-free versus what Canada allows — US$800, versus $20 in Canada: “(That’s) just ridiculous… There’s no one that can argue that.”— On wine sales, the U.S. is already fighting Canada at the WTO for discriminatory rules on store shelves. Lighthizer said: “It’s just rank protectionism at the provincial level in Canada.”— Dairy remains a major problem. Lawmaker Devin Nunes, a third-generation dairy farmer, lamented Canada’s limits on imports under supply management. “Canada has been getting away with murder in their dairy industry,” he said. “It’s causing tremendous problems for farmers here in the United States.”Lighthizer concurred. He said it’s also a problem in other supply-managed sectors, poultry and eggs. He expressed some sympathy for Canada’s challenges in dismantling the system, but he said he hopes to negotiate reforms.“It’s difficult for them to change their policies in these areas,” Lighthizer said.“Having said that it’s a very high priority to make changes in the Canadian dairy programs. … I’m hopeful that when we put the final deal together it’s something we will make real headway on.”Trudeau suggested that will mean a fight: “We’re going to continue to defend supply management, because it works.”Lighthizer predicted how the final hours of bargaining will unfold: he said the last issues to be sorted out will include sensitive agricultural areas, such as dairy and wine, as well as intellectual property.But he said he envisions a new NAFTA with 33 chapters — up from the current 22 — that benefits every country.He said his primary goal is to steer back some manufacturing from Mexico, through several means: driving up wages in Mexico, new auto rules and weakening the investor-state protections that allow companies to sue foreign governments under Chapter 11.“The Canadians, to be honest, have a similar objective,” Lighthizer said.He said he wants guarantees that Mexican workers will get to vote by secret ballot on collective bargaining agreements. On dispute resolution, he was pressed by 103 Republican lawmakers who released a letter demanding that he maintain the investor-state system.Lighthizer pushed back.If an American company wants to move a plant from Texas to Mexico, and is frightened that, for example, socialist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador might win the presidential election and discriminate against foreign companies, why, Lighthizer asked, should U.S. trade policy help provide reassurance?
TORONTO – Canadians like to complain about paying some of the world’s highest wireless prices, but a Montreal Economic Institute report says they should also acknowledge the cost of having some of the world’s most advanced networks.“Yes, we pay more. But we get a lot more. That’s what I’d like people to take into consideration when they complain about their prices,” author Martin Masse said in an interview before the report’s publication on Tuesday.His 40-page report says Canadian wireless carriers are among the biggest investors in network infrastructure “however one calculates it: per connection, per subscriber, per capita, or as a percentage of their revenue.”The benefit, it adds, is that Canadian carriers are consistently ranked among the fastest in the world, citing statistics from telecom equipment maker Cisco and Open Signal, which measure networks in various countries.The Montreal Economic Institute, which takes an anti-regulatory stance, receives some funding from the telecommunications industry players but says it makes its choices independently.The study comes as the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission is in the midst of requiring Rogers, Bell and Telus to add a basic, data-only wireless service to their product lineup.Rogers has proposed a $25 per month plan with 400 megabytes of data at 4G speeds. Bell and Telus have suggested 500 MB of data at LTE speeds for $30 per month.Katy Anderson of Open Media, an advocacy group that pushes for lower-cost telecommunications services, said “at the end of the day, we know that so many Canadians pay way too much for their cellphone services.”She pointed to a short-lived price war last December, when Rogers, Telus and Bell offered heavily discounted plans with 10 gigabytes of data for $60 per month.“I think it just shows you that if one gives a cheaper option, they’ll all go that way. Then, on the other hand, once they start to raise their prices we see that the companies tend to raise their prices (to be) pretty similar.John Lawford of the Public Interest Advocacy Group, which also pushes for consumer-friendly telecom policies, said that countries like Finland and South Korea also have good networks but at lower prices than Canada’s.He adds that regions within Canada that have a “strong” fourth carrier enjoy average discounts of between seven and 25 per cent than those without.Masse said he doesn’t think Canada should follow Europe’s lead, or even the United States, in emphasizing low prices over investments on advanced fourth-generation and fifth-generation networks.“In five years, when we have our 5G networks deployed here . . . in Europe they will still pay low prices for crappy services and no 5G, or years behind us in deploying 5G, which will have an impact on their whole economy.“We all want to pay less. But is this what we want?”Independent consultant Mark H. Goldberg, who organizes the annual Canadian Telecom Summit, said in an email that he agrees that a focus on price alone doesn’t make sense with something as complex as wireless.“We are still seeing hundreds of thousands of new customers each quarter, which seems to indicate that Canadians are still seeing value and getting their first phones,” Goldberg said. “I think that is an encouraging signal.”Companies in this story: (TSX:RCI.B, TSX:BCE, TSX:T, TSX:SJR.B)
CHICAGO — Boeing is buying a majority stake in Embraer’s commercial aircraft and services operations for $4.2 billion.The joint venture, announced Monday, gives Boeing 80 per cent ownership of those operations, with Embraer owning the remaining stake.Boeing will have operational and management control of the company. Embraer will keep consent rights for some decisions, such as the transfer of operations from Brazil.The deal still needs approval from the Brazilian government, as well as shareholders and regulators.The companies also agreed to another joint venture to promote and develop new markets for the multi-mission medium airlift KC-390. Embraer will own a 51 per cent stake in the joint venture, with Boeing owning the remaining 49 per cent. The transaction is targeted to close by the end of next year.The Associated Press
“The intent of the program is not to have people join the army after, or to go on to some sort of law enforcement career,” said Fanni. “You get light training and you get confidence, and you get all those good things. It’s like cadets.”Fanni explained that Bold Eagle doesn’t have a big presence in Northeast B.C., and that this week’s presentation at NPSS will be the first time that the program will be partnering with industry to do outreach to students.Bold Eagle’s presentation to NPSS students is taking place Thursday, March 8th. For more information about the Canadian Forces Bold Eagle program, visit: http://www.forces.gc.ca/en/jobs-caf-aboriginal/bold-eagle-index.page FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — CDN Controls in Fort St. John are once again helping to bring opportunities to First Nations students at North Peace Secondary School, though this year’s event will be expanding on last year’s focus on trades training.CDN’s Community Relations Coordinator Alex Fanni said that last year, his company hosted a group of First Nations students from the North Peace at the Fort St. John office to learn about what it takes to embark on a career in the electrical and instrumentation trades. CDN entered into a partnership with the Halfway River First Nation to help area First Nations students in opening doors to those career paths.Fanni, who is a veteran of Afghanistan and served with the Canadian Forces for five years, said that he wanted to do something slightly different this year, and got in touch with a friend of his that runs the Forces’ Bold Eagle program. The program, which runs through the summer, is open to First Nations youth living in western Canada and combines Aboriginal culture and teachings with military training.
The charges result from the spill of 225,000 litres of diluted heavy oil from a Husky pipeline near Maidstone in west central Saskatchewan.About 40 per cent of the leaked crude made it into the waterway, forcing communities downstream to shut off a main source of drinking water for almost two months.Husky was permitted to restart the pipeline in October after repairs to the line were tested and inspected. The company said the pipeline buckled and leaked because of ground movement. CALGARY, A.B. — Husky Energy Inc. is facing provincial charges carrying a maximum $1-million fine resulting from a pipeline leak that fouled the North Saskatchewan River in July 2016.The Saskatchewan government says Calgary-based Husky is to appear in Lloydminster, Sask., provincial court on Thursday to face one charge of unlawfully permitting the discharge of a substance that caused an adverse environmental effect.In a statement, it says Husky will also face federal environmental charges, with those details to be announced later this week.
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Province has announced new funding to build a new elementary school in Fort St. John across from the Fort St. John Hospital.The Province is providing up to $30.8 million to build the school and the Peace River North School District will contribute $300,000. Construction is set to begin summer 2019. The school is scheduled to open in fall 2021, with 505 spaces for students in kindergarten to Grade 6. The school will be located across the street from the Fort St. John Hospital on 112th Avenue.“Our government has committed to addressing the backlog of capital projects in fast-growing communities. We’re investing in our children and working hard to build schools that are desperately needed,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Education. “Students deserve to go to school in modern, healthy learning environments, so they can thrive in their education, and succeed in life.” The new school will accommodate the growing population in Fort St. John. Since 2012, the city’s hospital has had more than 600 births each year. The birth rate, combined with 2016 Statistics Canada Census data, indicates there may be hundreds of new students entering the school system yearly for the foreseeable future.“We’re excited to have approval from the Ministry of Education to move forward on a second new elementary school,” said Jaret Thompson, Peace River North School Board deputy chair. “Our district has been challenged with space pressures for some time, and we’re glad to begin work on this second innovative learning space, situated in the northeast side of the city.”Plans for the two-storey facility include a neighbourhood learning centre with child care, before-and-after school care and multi-purpose spaces for community use. Given the harsh winter climate in northern B.C., indoor sports and activity areas are important. This space will contribute to Fort St. John’s goal of being a healthier community.“School District 60 (Peace River North) is committed to providing our students with innovative learning spaces in which they can develop their full potential,” said Dave Sloan, Peace River North School District superintendent. “New schools, such as the one being announced today, help us meet that commitment by providing new spaces for our rapidly growing student population.”
New Delhi: Trinamool Congress strongman and Bhatpara MLA Arjun Singh is all set to join the BJP here in the presence of senior party leaders, party sources said on Thursday. The legislator was miffed with the Trinamool leadership as he was denied a Lok Sabha ticket from Barrackpore parliamentary constituency, presently represented by Dinesh Trivedi. Singh on Thursday reached here and met Bharatiya Janata Party leaders Kailash Vijayvargiya and Mukul Roy, in whose presence he will join the saffron party on Thursday afternoon. He is also likely to be fielded from Barrackpore parliamentary constituency.
New Delhi: Delhi Congress Chief Shiela Dikshit has called an urgent meeting with the three working presidents of Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee on Tuesday, a senior party leader said.The meeting comes in the backdrop of Congress mulling its options to align with the Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi in its bid to defeat the BJP in Lok Sabha elections, days after having unanimously decided to go it alone in Delhi. “An urgent meeting has been called with the three working presidents Devender Yadav, Haroon Yusuf and Rajesh Lilothia, at Sheila Diskhit’s residence,” a party leader said. The leader, however, did not elaborate on the agenda of the meeting.
Tokyo: Former Nissan chief Carlos Ghosn was rearrested early Thursday in Tokyo while out on bail, local media said, as prosecutors investigate a fresh charge against the auto tycoon. Authorities arrested the 65-year-old less than a month after he was dramatically freed on bail following more than 100 days in detention. Public broadcaster NHK and other media said prosecutors had entered Ghosn’s temporary accommodation in central Tokyo early Thursday morning and that he left with them by car shortly afterwards. An AFP reporter outside the home saw three men in dark suits guarding the entrance to the building’s car park and a police officer patrolling, as dozens of journalists gathered. Reports emerged Wednesday that prosecutors were weighing rearresting Ghosn as they investigate claims related to at least USD 32 million in Nissan funds transferred to a distributor in Oman. According to a source familiar with the matter, some of this money is believed to have been used to buy a luxury boat for Ghosn and his family. The former high-flying executive already faces three charges of financial misconduct related to allegations he under-reported his compensation and sought to transfer losses to Nissan’s books. He has denied any wrongdoing and took to Twitter for the first time Wednesday, using a newly created account that his spokespeople confirmed was authentic, to announce plans for a press conference. “I’m getting ready to tell the truth about what’s happening. Press conference on Thursday, April 11,” said the tweet, sent in English and then Japanese. Ghosn currently faces two separate charges of deferring his salary to the tune of nine billion yen (USD81 million) and not revealing this in official documents to shareholders.