Food fight Liberals Tories trade shots as precampaign battles intensify

first_imgOTTAWA — Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor is trying to distinguish the Liberals as a party of scientific, evidence-based policy while she says Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is spreading misinformation about Canada’s new food guide.Petitpas Taylor held a news conference in Ottawa today, along with her colleague Marco Mendicino, to say the Conservatives are willing to throw away research and evidence underpinning the creation of the new dietary guide.In January, Health Canada released an overhauled document that did away with traditional food groups and portion sizes and focused instead on broader guidelines, including eating more plant-based protein and drinking more water.Last Wednesday, Scheer told an annual gathering of the Dairy Farmers of Canada in Saskatoon that the process to craft the new version of the document was “flawed” and that the guide needs to reflect what “science tells us.”He also pledged that a Conservative government would “absolutely” review the guide, adding there was a “complete lack of consultation” on the new version.Petitpas Taylor’s news conference followed an appearance by the Conservatives’ Pierre Poilievre, attacking the Liberals for bringing back Gerald Butts as a campaign adviser following his resignation in the SNC-Lavalin affair last winter.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Police going door to door in northern Manitoba hunt for BC homicide

first_imgGILLAM, Man. — More personnel and equipment are being poured into the gruelling hunt for two B.C. homicide suspects in the bug infested and bog strewn landscape surrounding the tiny northern Manitoba community of Gillam.As the nearly week-long search for Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, and 19-year-old Kam McLeod continued Sunday the RCMP said there had been no new sightings of the pair and no new information to indicate they have left the area.The two Port Alberni, B.C., residents are wanted in connection with three homicides earlier this month in northern British Columbia.Police, aided by tracking dogs and drones, have been going door to door, checking every residence and abandoned building in and around Gillam as townsfolk maintain their own stressful vigil for the fugitives.The aerial search effort got a boost Saturday with the arrival of a Canadian Air Force CC-130H Hercules aircraft equipped with high tech thermal detection gear.In addition, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs said that it had requested help from the Bear Clan Patrol, an Indigenous-led neighbourhood watch group, and was co-ordinating teams to fly to First Nations communities including Fox Lake Cree Nation, York Factory First Nation, and War Lake First Nation.Schmegelsky and McLeod are charged with second-degree murder in the death of University of British Columbia professor Leonard Dyck and are also suspects in the fatal shootings of Australian Lucas Fowler and his American girlfriend Chynna Deese.A burned-out Toyota RAV4 the teens were travelling in was found near Gillam last week and police have said there have been no reports of stolen vehicles since then.However, the RCMP are still asking anyone who may have unwittingly helped the two in their travels to come forward.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Young People Lift The Spirits Of The Lonely With Valentines Day Cards

first_imgValentine’s Day is a time to spread love, but for the 43% of seniors who reported feeling lonely on a regular basis, Valentine’s Day can be an especially hard time.Video: Love Letters PSA (Extended Edition) – China Anne McClainThat’s why DoSomething.org, the largest organization for young people and social change and AARP Foundation’s Mentor Up are teaming up for the second annual Love Letters campaign that encourages young people to create handmade Valentine’s Day cards to lift the spirits of older adults this holiday season. Handmade cards will be included in meal deliveries to Meals on Wheels clients across the country.Actress and singer China Anne McClain best known for her roles in Disney Channel’s A.N.T. Farm and the Disney Channel Original Movie How to Build a Better Boy is teaming up to support the campaign through a public service announcement.“I was interested in being involved as soon as I heard about the Love Letters campaign because the concept was so sweet and original, said China. “I love doing things like this and making people smile so I thought the idea was just perfect.”The campaign runs through February 15 and young people who sign up at DoSomething.org/loveletters and report back with a photo will be eligible to win a $10,000 scholarship. For official scholarship rules, click here.“Last year, DoSomething.org members made over a quarter of a million Valentine’s Day cards for homebound seniors,” said Naomi Hirabayashi, chief marketing officer at DoSomething.org. “By combining social change with things that young people love like Valentine’s Day and crafts, young people are able to make a huge impact and use their skills.”“AARP Foundation is thrilled once again to be taking part in DoSomething.org’s Love Letters national campaign, ” said AARP Foundation president Lisa Marsh Ryerson. “There are millions of adults 50 and older who are isolated or who have limited regular contact with others. We all remember the warm glow a Valentine’s Day card can bring, and this campaign helps young people bring that warmth back into the lives of lonely older people.”The cards made as a part of the campaign will be distributed through Meals On Wheels Association of America which serves 2.5 million seniors who are homebound due to limited mobility. The support of the volunteers and meals they provide is often is often critical to helping them maintain enough independence to stay in their own homes.“I cannot begin to express the immense impact of the Love Letters campaign on the seniors we serve,” said Ellie Hollander, President and CEO of the Meals On Wheels Association of America. “Together, the nationwide network of Meals On Wheels programs and thoughtful DoSomething.org volunteers can lift the spirits of thousands of isolated seniors again this year.”last_img read more

John Stamos Takes Part In Reel Stories Real Lives Event For MPTF

first_imgThe entertainment industry turned out in force on Saturday night in support of MPTF’s (Motion Picture & Television Fund) fourth annual “Reel Stories, Real Lives” event, a unique evening of powerful readings which told the stories of industry members and their families who have benefitted from MPTF’s services in recent years.Kevin Spacey And John StamosThe event, held at Milk Studios, featured readings by renowned Hollywood actors including Lizzy Caplan, Tony Goldwyn, Tobey Maguire, Alessandro Nivola, Mira Sorvino and John Stamos.Each story was written by some of Hollywood’s leading feature and television writers including Bill Dubuque, Jason Fuchs, Jason Hall, John Hoffman and Beau Willimon. This year’s show also included a special tribute to Kevin Spacey in honor of his dedication to MPTF.“My involvement with MPTF began 15 years ago at the Kevin Spacey & Friends event where I witnessed Hollywood’s finest telling amazing stories about nine industry veterans living at MPTF on the Wasserman campus,” said MPTF President and CEO Bob Beitcher. “The pride I felt that night to be a part of the entertainment community that cares so much for those who came before us inspired me to get more involved and I am thankful that I did.”The evening drew approximately 500 industry leaders, and celebrity guests including Yvette Nicole Brown, Dana Brunetti, Robert Herjavec, Kym Johnson, and more.The event was produced by Guymon Casady, Julie Darmody, Bill Gerber, Eric Kranzler, Kevin McCormick, Karen Rosenfelt, Greg Sills, Courtenay Valenti, and Warren Zavala.Jeffrey Katzenberg, Chairman of the MPTF Foundation said “My thanks to Kevin Spacey for bringing such a powerful message to the next generation of Hollywood at this year’s Reel Stories, Real Lives event – his call to action as he first did 15 years ago at a similar evening is certain to bring new energy to the mission of caring for our own. The stories told, crafted by the creative community, inspired us all to do what we can to support the industry’s safety net for those in need.”“For 94 years, each new generation of Hollywood comes to realize the uniqueness of an industry that not only honors the content it makes, but equally important the people who make it through the charity – MPTF,” said CEO of MPTF Foundation Ken Scherer. “Caring for our own is the theme of Reel Stories, Real Lives and my sincere thank you to all the industry volunteers who make this night happen and especially to Kevin Spacey for being the champion for the cause for the past 15 years.”The evening was generously supported by UCLA Health, Cadillac, and Delta Air Lines.last_img read more

Brittney Cade Pritchard And Mike Dirnt Honored at 5th Annual Tower Cancer

first_imgBrittney Cade Pritchard, breast cancer survivor and her husband, Mike Dirnt of the legendary band Green Day will be honored for their courageous example as a couple sharing their personal cancer journey in order to help others at Tower Cancer Research Foundation’s (Tower) 5th Annual Ante Up for a Cancer Free Generation Celebrity Poker Tournament and Casino Night on Saturday, September 8, 2018.The tournament will take place at the Sofitel Hotel, Riviera 31, 8555 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90048. Dozens of stars from TV, sports, music and film will also join in to bet big to support talented young cancer researchers and change the future of cancer. Red carpet arrivals begin at 6:00 PM PST.In May 2014, Mike Dirnt took to Facebook to publicly announce that his wife, Brittney Cade Pritchard, was being treated for breast cancer. Brittney and Mike went on to document their cancer journey, which included chemotherapy and nine surgeries, via Brittney’s – @batmansmom — and Mike’s – @mike_dossxx — Instagram pages. Through social media, Brittney and Mike courageously discussed every step along the way, posting about the treatments, the hair loss and other side effects, and everything in between with tremendous dignity, grace and mettle. By openly sharing their family’s very personal journey with the public, Brittney and Mike eased the burden of so many other individuals and families facing cancer, proving that we are not alone in our challenges, that we share so much as a human family grappling with this terrible disease, and that there is hope. Today, Brittney is in full remission.Joining in to honor Brittney and Mike will be Green Day’s Tre Cool and his wife Sara Rose Wright, Lee Rocker of The Stray Cats and his wife Deborah Drucker, Frank Ferrer of Guns ’N Roses, celebrity fashion stylist Joey Tierney, actress Christa B. Allen (Revenge), artist Brian Viveros and many more friends. The event has attracted the support of numerous celebrities who are expected to attend including (in alphabetical order by first name):AJ Buckley (CSI: NY, Seal Team 6); AJ Mclean (Backstreet Boys); Alan Bersten (Dancing with the Stars); Arianne Zucker (Days of Our Lives); Beau Casper Smart (Dirty Dancing, The Perfect Match); Billy Burke (Twilight); Camryn Manheim (The Practice); Cheick Kongo (MMA Fighter); Chuck Liddell (UFC Champion); David Alan Grier (Comedian, The Carmichael Show, In Living Color); Danny Zuker (Writer – Modern Family); Dule Hill (Suits); Elex Michaelson (Anchor, Good Day, L.A. on Fox 11); Eric Nenninger (One Day at a Time) & Angel Parker (Lab Rats); Erik Michael (Otown); Gilles Marini (Sex and the City, Switched at Birth); Joanna Krupa (Supermodel, Actress); Katie Cleary (Model, Activist); Kim Glass (Former Olympian); La La Kent (Vanderpump Rules); Omar Benson Miller (Ballers); Peter MacKenzie (Blackish); Randall Emmett (Producer – 2 Guns, Lone Survivor, Silence); Sam Hunt (Unbroken: Path to Redemption); Shanna Moakler (VH1 Hollywood Exes); Shawn Christian (Days of Our Lives); Tiffany Michelle (Poker Professional, Amazing Race); Tito Ortiz (MMA/UFC Champion); Vanessa Marcil (Las Vegas).Cancer Free Generation (CFG) is the young leadership division of Tower. CFG seeks to identify, among their peers in the Southern California region, visionary and innovative doctors, medical professionals and researchers and enable them to discover and implement new ideas and techniques to conquer cancer. Additionally, CFG’s efforts support young people and their families who have been impacted by cancer, so that they may approach life with renewed strength and optimism. With this dual approach, CFG’s goal is to help ensure that the next generation becomes the first cancer free generation. CFG’s executive committee consists of young professionals working in a variety of fields including finance, law, real estate, entertainment, and medicine. Many members of CFG’s leadership are, themselves, young cancer survivors. Their common vision is the desire to build a more inspired community via connecting interesting and passionate young people who make a difference in the world and who want to change the future of cancer.Many generous sponsors are supporting the tournament this year, including Oakland Coffee; Emmett Furla Films; Herzog, Yuhas, Ehrlich & Ardell; Cathy Titus Realty; FusionStorm; Skadden and Skydance Media. Among the top prizes are: Private poker lessons with Poker Legend Daniel Negreanu with a stay in the Palms Casino Resort fantasy penthouse suite in Las Vegas; A Five-Night Stay at the Ritz Carlton Waikiki; and A Three-Night Stay at the Hilton Los Cabos.Tickets may be purchased at www.towercancer.org or by calling 310.299.8477.last_img read more

Couple keeps Canadas Main Streets alive in The Tale of a Town

first_imgAdvertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Login/Register With: To say the The Tale of a Town struck a nerve with Canadians is clearly an understatement. After making a number of Tales around Ontario, in 2014 the pair turned it into a national project and have since made shows about and for every province and territory in the country. They’ve raised over half a million dollars in government and foundation support and employed 119 artists along the way.READ MORE Facebookcenter_img Advertisement In 2008, Lisa Marie DiLiberto had an idea: to make a theatre production celebrating Canadian main streets and downtowns. This came to her while touring across Canada, but she decided to make the new production about the neighbourhood she was then living in: Parkdale.Among the team that she brought together was Charles Ketchabaw, a theatre technician with a background in radio. The production they made, The Tale of a Town, gathered oral histories from people living in Parkdale and presented them in a storefront theatre, using a combination of live actors and recorded media.Nearly a decade, 124 towns, 3,259 interviews, 157 performances, one marriage and two kids later, DiLiberto and Ketchabaw are bringing The Tale of a Town — Canada to Theatre Passe Muraille next week, as part of a nationwide tour that visits Milton, St. Catharines, Kingston and Burlington early next year. Lisa Marie DiLiberto and her husband Charles Ketchabaw gather information and recollections about main streets and downtowns across Canada for their Tale of a Town theatre series. (TINA LIETTE) Twitterlast_img read more

How Three Billboards went from film fest darling to awardsseason controversy

first_imgBut when the movie started screening outside the festival circuit weeks later, what had looked like consensus between both audiences and critics began to crumble. Three Billboards got something very right about women’s rage, but it also got something very wrong about race — no small matter for a film set in Missouri in 2017 that features an openly racist cop who dances around the n-word and has tortured a black man in police custody. Facebook Advertisement Advertisement Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitter Login/Register With: Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri seemed poised from the start to be an awards-season steamroller. It boasts a bevy of strong performances led by Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell, and Woody Harrelson, and a barnburning screenplay by McDonagh — all of whom are among the film’s seven Oscar nominations, which also include Best Picture. And it was clear from the trailer that Three Billboards was a movie about a woman fed up with the world’s injustice in general and her own town’s specifically; McDonagh had been working on the screenplay for years, but its arrival seemed perfectly timed for the end of 2017.The film raked in accolades from critics at its festival premiere in Venice and more in Toronto the next week. (I saw it in Toronto, and though I didn’t love the film as much as some of my colleagues, I appreciated what it was going for.) But it wasn’t just many critics who loved the movie: The ticket-buying audience at the public screenings in Toronto also voted to award the film the People’s Choice Award, historically a solid indicator of future awards-season success. The audience picked Three Billboards over crowd-pleasing movies like The Shape of Water, Darkest Hour, and Molly’s Game. Clearly, it had hit a nerve.Frances McDormand and Sam Rockwell at the premiere of Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2017. Michael Tran/Getty Imageslast_img read more

New Justin Bieber exhibit in Stratford filled with personal memorabilia from his

first_imgAdvertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Fans have already snapped up many of the tickets to Stratford Perth Museum’s Justin Bieber exhibit, opening Feb. 18. – Chris Pizzello/AP/File Facebook “We really didn’t believe how big he got so quick,” says his grandfather, Bruce Dale. “It was just amazing.” Advertisementcenter_img Login/Register With: Justin Bieber’s grandparents stand next to the steps of the Avon Theatre in his hometown of Stratford, Ont., where they remember him busking even before he turned 10.“He was raising money to take his mom on a trip to Disney World… and he did,” says Diane Dale, Bieber’s grandmother. “He made a lot of money sitting here on the steps. He was good.”Viral videos of him performing on the steps of the theatre are what helped Bieber get noticed by his talent manager Scooter Braun and become one of the best-selling artists in the world soon afterwards. Advertisement Twitterlast_img read more

Indian Affairs Minister John Duncan undergoes heart surgery

first_img(Minister John Duncan (right) with Chief Clifford Bull (left) and Janelle Manitowabi (centre) at the grand opening of Lac Seul’s new Obishikokaang elementary school. (INAC/Photo)APTN National NewsOTTAWA–Indian Affairs Minister John Duncan underwent heart surgery on Tuesday, according to a message posted on the Indian Affairs website.Duncan was in hospital for heart valve replacement surgery to replace a congenital heart valve defect, the message said.“Minister Duncan is in good health and will be recuperating at home for the next few weeks,” the message said.Heritage Minister James Moore will take up Duncan’s portfolio in the interim.“Minister Duncan looks forward to coming back and assuming his responsibilities as minister of Indian Affairs,” said the message. “Minister Duncan is thankful for all the kind wishes he has received as he recovers.”National Chief Shawn Atleo, who is at a special chiefs assembly in Gatineau, Que., said he had only heard the news today and hoped Duncan recovered quickly.last_img read more

Bell of Batoche rings again after long hidden silence

first_imgAPTN National NewsThousands of people were on hand this weekend to witness a milestone moment in Metis history as the legendary Bell of Batoche returned to Metis hands.Last week, we brought you exclusive details about how the bell was found and the negotiations for its return.APTN’s Ntawnis Piapot was in Batoche, Sask., for the historic celebrations as the bell was welcomed home.last_img

Manitoba adopts Jordans Principle to help First Nations children

first_imgAPTN National NewsThe motion that introduced Jordan’s Principle to Canada was voted on in the House of Commons in 2007.It was passed unanimously by members of Parliament after Jordan River Anderson, a First Nations boy in Manitoba died in hospital while Canada and the province fought over who would pay for his nursing at home.But implementing the plan to put First Nations children on the same footing as off-reserve kids is taking more time.APTN’s Dennis Ward now on Manitoba’s plan.last_img read more

Indigenous leaders ask Manitoba government not to hold up Canadas MMIW inquiry

first_imgDennis Ward APTN National NewsIndigenous leaders in Manitoba met with the province Tuesday to urge them not to hold up the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women.The new provincial government has been blamed for not wanting to sign off on the terms of reference.last_img

Young Indigenous woman Winnipegs latest homicide victim

first_imgShaneen Robinson-DesjarlaisAPTN National NewsWinnipeg police responded to reports of a gunshot outside of a rooming house downtown Sunday night.Officers found a woman outside of the building upon arrival.Shania Chartrand, 21, was later pronounced dead at hospital.Police called the killing “another very tragic event” for the city. Police hope by releasing Chartrand’s identity it will lead to information to help solve the case.It was Winnipeg’s seventh homicide of the year.srobinson@aptn.calast_img read more

Tories questioned on why they did not boot Beyak from caucus sooner

first_imgThe Canadian Press OTTAWA – The Conservative party is facing questions on why it failed to oust Sen. Lynn Beyak from its caucus sooner, despite repeated calls from Indigenous leaders.Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer issued a statement late Thursday saying Beyak no longer had a role in the caucus after she posted letters from supporters on her website, including one that said every “opportunistic culture, subsistence hunter/gatherers seeks to get what they can for no effort.”Scheer called it “racist” to suggest Indigenous Canadians are lazy.Beyak could not be reached for comment following Scheer’s decision.Emails to Beyak’s office have gone unanswered and the voicemail box at her Senate office is full.Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett says the government finds it disappointing that Conservative leadership allowed Beyak to use her position to espouse her “ill-informed and offensive views” of history.“Although Sen. Beyak has been finally removed from the Conservative caucus, it is more disappointing that her appointment by the Conservatives allows her to continue to use parliamentary resources to validate the views of those who refuse to accept the truth and propagate the misinformation and prejudice that continue to feed racism in our country,” Bennett said in a statement.Beyak was named to the Senate by former prime minister Stephen Harper.Last year, Scheer was urged by a number of Indigenous leaders, including Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde, to remove Beyak from caucus following remarks she made about the legacy of Canada’s residential schools.“In this era of reconciliation there is no place for the kind of outdated and uninformed thinking expressed by Sen. Lynn Beyak,” Bellegarde said in September.“She should resign, and if she won’t resign she should be expelled from caucus by the Conservative leader to demonstrate his party’s commitment to truth and reconciliation.”In March, Beyak told the Senate that government-funded, church-operated schools where Indigenous children endured widespread sexual and physical abuse were not all bad.“I speak partly for the record, but mostly in memory of the kindly and well-intentioned men and women and their descendants – perhaps some of us here in this chamber – whose remarkable works, good deeds and historical tales in the residential schools go unacknowledged for the most part and are overshadowed by negative reports,” Beyak said.last_img read more

Canada defends human rights record at United Nations review

first_imgTodd Lamirande APTN NewsJustice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould defended Canada’s human rights record at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva Friday.Much of the three-hour session revolved around Indigenous peoples in Canada.Dozens of countries weighed in with their recommendations on what to do better.tlamirande@aptn.ca@ToddLamirandelast_img

It was fullon survival instincts Bear Clan Patrol members talk about encounter

first_imgAshley BrandsonAPTN NewsA member of the Winnipeg Bear Clan Patrol was treated in hospital after being stabbed  by a man on a bus who was threatening another passenger.Jonathan Meikle and his Bear Clan partner Matthew Shorting intervened in an incident on Sunday night.“It became a grappling match between me and the attacker,” said Meikle. “In my mind it was full on survivor instincts.”Both were on a bus at around midnight when a man began yelling racial slurs and threats toward another passenger.Shorting remembers the man saying, “No one on this bus will do anything.”That’s when Meikle and Shorting noticed he had a knife.When Meikle and Shorting noticed the attacker following the passenger off the bus, they jumped into action.The two off duty Bear Clan Patrol volunteers kicked and pulled the attacker off the bus.“To me this guy’s a threat.  He’s a threat to my life, he’s a threat to everyone’s life.  I needed to get that knife away from him.”Meikle says they were able to get the knife away from him, and detained him until police arrived.That’s when Meikle realized he had been stabbed in the leg, which resulted in a hospital visit and eight staples.Winnipeg Police Cst Jay M.urray said in situations like this, police advise people to put themselves in a position of safety and call the police.But he admits that’s not always possible.“In this situation they put themselves in front of this, they potentially stopped somebody from getting seriously hurt,” he said.Devon Evan Charles Henderson has been charged with robbery, uttering threats and assault with a weapon.Murray said police believe the suspect was involved in a robbery at the bus stop near Graham Avenue and Edmonton Street before boarding the bus.Despite the altercation, Meikle and Shorting empathize for the man.“This individual is not solely to blame,” said Shorting. “There’s environments that shaped him, he didn’t get there by himself.”Meikle said he understands what Henderson is going through, because he has his own dark past and just celebrated a year of sobriety.“He was not in a well place,” said Meikle. “There’s something that caused him to act out this way.  And I think we need to look and put under a microscope more of our systems and really get to the root causes of what’s causing all these events to take place.“I think we can do better as a society.”In hopes to avoid another situation like this, the pair want the Bear Clan to become more of a safety role for Winnipeg Transit.“We want better relationships between Indigenous people and the police, and most importantly we definitely want healing for the person harmed,” said Shorting.abrandson@aptn.ca@ashleybrandsonlast_img read more

Merkel clinches German coalition govt but hurdle remains

first_imgBERLIN – Chancellor Angela Merkel finally reached a deal Wednesday to form a new German coalition government, handing the powerful finance ministry to the country’s main centre-left party in an agreement aimed at ending months of political gridlock.The centre-left Social Democrats’ leaders now have one last major hurdle to overcome — winning their skeptical members’ approval of the deal.Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union, its Bavaria-only sister, the Christian Social Union, and the centre-left Social Democrats agreed after a grueling final 24 hours of negotiations on a 177-page deal that leads off with the promise of “a new awakening for Europe.”“I know that millions of citizens have been watching us closely on this long road over recent weeks,” Merkel said. “They had two justified demands of us: First, finally form a government — a stable government — and second, think … of people’s real needs and interests.”The coalition deal could be “the foundation of a good and stable government, which our country needs and many in the world expect of us,” she added.Germany has already broken its post-World War II record for the longest time between its latest election on Sept. 24 to the swearing-in of a new government. That is still at least several weeks away.Merkel currently leads a caretaker government, which isn’t in a position to launch major initiatives or play any significant role in the debate on the European Union’s future, led so far by French President Emmanuel Macron.A key role in the EU is particularly dear to Social Democrat leader Martin Schulz, a former European Parliament president.On Wednesday he declared that, with the coalition deal, Germany “will return to an active and leading role in the European Union.” The agreement states, among other things, that Germany is prepared to pay more into the EU budget.Before addressing Europe’s future, Schulz faces hard work at home.The coalition accord will be put to a ballot of the Social Democrats’ more than 460,000 members, a process that will take a few weeks. Germany’s highest court said Wednesday it had dismissed a series of complaints against the ballot.Many Social Democrats are skeptical after the party’s disastrous election result, which followed four years of serving as the junior partner to Merkel’s conservatives in a so-called “grand coalition.” The party’s youth wing vehemently opposes a repeat of that alliance.If Social Democrat members say no, the new coalition government can’t be formed. That would leave only an unprecedented minority government under Merkel or a new election as options.Schulz’s zigzag course in recent months has undermined his authority. He vowed to take the party into opposition on election night, but reversed course in November after Merkel’s efforts to build a coalition with two smaller parties collapsed.On the conservative side, Merkel needs only the approval of a party congress of her CDU, a far lower hurdle.“I am counting on convincing our members that we have negotiated a very good coalition agreement,” Schulz said.His party reached compromises on two key demands: curbing the use of temporary work contracts in larger companies and at least considering narrowing differences between Germany’s public and private health insurance systems.The Social Democrats are set to get the foreign, labour and finance ministries — the latter a major prize, held by Merkel’s CDU for the past eight years and an influential position given Germany’s status as the eurozone’s biggest economy. The interior ministry, also held by the CDU, would go to Bavaria’s CSU, which has pushed hard to curb the number of migrants entering Germany.Merkel’s party would keep the defence ministry and get the economy and energy ministry, held by the Social Democrats in the outgoing government.One CDU lawmaker, Olav Gutting, wrote on Twitter: “Phew! At least we still have the chancellery!”Unconfirmed reports in German media said that Schulz plans to become foreign minister while the new finance minister and vice chancellor would be Olaf Scholz, Hamburg’s centre-left mayor.Schulz, according to the reports, would hand over his party’s leadership to Andrea Nahles, the head of its parliamentary group. After the election, Schulz had ruled out taking a Cabinet position under Merkel, and seeking a ministry could complicate his efforts to sell the deal to members.Merkel defended the carve-up of ministries.“Of course, after many years in which Wolfgang Schaeuble led the finance ministry and really was an institution, many find it difficult that we can no longer hold this ministry, and the same goes for the interior ministry,” she said. “But we have important jobs. We have the economy ministry for the first time in decades.”She dismissed suggestions that Social Democrat-led ministries would force her to open Germany’s purse wider for Macron’s European reform proposals than she would like.“Regardless of whether a ministry is led by the Social Democrats or the (Christian Democratic) Union, you can only spend the money you have,” Merkel said. “To be honest, I’m not at all worried.”If the coalition comes together, the nationalist Alternative for Germany will be the biggest opposition party. Co-leader Alexander Gauland criticized the deal, particularly the possibility of deeper European financial integration.“You ask yourself why Mr. Macron doesn’t just move into the chancellery,” he said.___Coalition agreement (in German): https://tinyurl.com/y8zpyxq9___David Rising contributed to this report.last_img read more

Hudsons Bay Co says Saks stores affected by data breach

first_imgTORONTO – Hudson’s Bay Co. is the latest Canadian company to be hit with a data breach, saying that customer payment card information may have been stolen from shoppers at certain Saks Fifth Avenue, Saks Off Fifth and Lord & Taylor stores in North America.A spokesperson for retailer would not comment on whether any specific Canadian locations were affected, but did say there is no indication the breach affects any of HBC’s other digital platforms, Hudson’s Bay stores or Home Outfitters locations.HBC released little information on the breach itself on Sunday, but a New York-based cybersecurity firm said it had analyzed the available data and found that information from five-million credit cards had been compromised.Gemini Advisory LLC said in a report that the information was stolen from 83 Saks Fifth Avenue or Saks Off Fifth stores, and from all Lord & Taylor locations.The firm found that three Canadian Saks locations were exposed to the breach: Sherway Gardens in Toronto, Bramalea City Centre in Brampton, Ont. and Pickering Town Centre in Pickering, Ont.Dmitry Chorine, the co-founder of Gemini Advisory, said his firm works to improve response to data breaches by analyzing stolen data that appears on the so-called dark web.Chorine said the firm started looking into the breach when they noticed an influx of stolen credit and debit card information being offered for sale on the dark web last week.Upon analyzing the data, Chorine said they were able to determine that shoppers at all Lord & Taylor and at certain Saks Fifth Avenue locations were at risk of having their information stolen.“On March 28, we saw a significant spike of stolen credit cards offered for sale on one of the marketplaces,” said Chorine.“When we checked, we saw there was an advertisement stating that more than five-million credit and debit cards will be offered for sale, and that’s when we decided to research this particular breach.”The data that Chorine and his team found was being offered on a dark web marketplace operated by a hacking group called JokerStash, which Chorine says has been active in hacking retail and hospitality companies for the past three years.Gemini Advisory said Sunday that it had found data that had been stolen from as early as March 2017, and as late as March 2018.He said that only certain Saks Fifth Avenue locations were affected because the outlet was in the process of switching from card-swipe technology to EMV chip technology, which is already commonly used in Canada.Stores that had already implemented chip machines would likely not be exposed to the data breach, Chorine said.Chorine urged any consumers who had shopped at Saks Fifth Avenue or Lord & Taylor stores in the past year to take preventative measures against fraud.“They should probably call their banks and replace their cards,” said Chorine. “That would probably be the best preventative action they could take, instead of just waiting.”For now, HBC is asking clients to review their account statements for activity or transactions they don’t recognize.The company said it’s investigating and taking steps to contain the attack, and clients will not be responsible for any fraudulent charges as a result of the breach.It said it will offer free identity protection services to those affected once they learn more about the breach.last_img read more

Bel Group to build plant to produce popular Mini Babybel snacks in

first_imgSOREL-TRACEY, Que. – The Bel Group says it will spend $87 million to build a factory to produce Mini Babybel cheese snacks in Quebec at its first Canadian plant.The cheese snacks, which are encased in red wax, are currently imported.The project will create 170 jobs between the plant in Sorel-Tracy and Bel Canada’s Montreal head office.The new plant is expected to begin commercial production in early 2020 and use Canadian milk.It will be built on a site adjacent to Laiterie Chalifoux.The Bel Group has 12,700 employees in some 30 subsidiaries around the world.last_img read more

Profits lower at Cogeco Communications while parent company logs gain

first_imgMONTREAL – Cogeco Communications Inc. says its earnings fell by about 15 per cent in the third quarter, primarily due to asset impairment and financial charges.The Montreal-based company said after the markets closed Wednesday that its quarterly profit was $64.5 million, down from $76.2 million in the same period of fiscal 2017.Cogeco said that was primarily due to increases in depreciation and financial costs, which were partly offset by a decrease of income taxes and other factors.Revenues increased 12.7 per cent to $637.1 million, driven primarily by 44 per cent growth in the U.S. broadband sector. Revenues held stable in the Canadian Internet services sector.Earnings per share in the quarter were $1.24, compared with $1.55 a year ago.The company also announced a quarterly dividend of $0.475 per share.Cogeco, the parent company, said it posted a gain of $70.1 million in the quarter, down from $82.1 million in the same quarter last year while revenues grew by about 11 per cent to $668.9 million.Cogeco announced last month that its subsidiary, Cogeco Connexion, had acquired 10 spectrum licenses of 2500 megahertz in non-metropolitan areas of Ontario, from Kian Telecom, for $8 million.In May, Cogeco Connexion successfully bid for 23 spectrum licenses of 2500 and 2300 megahertz primarily in its Ontario and Quebec wireline footprints for $24.3 million.The cost of these licenses will be recorded in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2018.“Overall we are satisfied with our performance for the third quarter of fiscal 2018,” said Cogeco Communications president and CEO Louis Audet.“Results at Cogeco Connexion have remained stable compared to the third quarter of fiscal 2017, despite the fact that our Canadian broadband services subsidiary implemented a new advanced customer management system and had consequently temporarily reduced its marketing and sales activities.”Audet also said the positive results in the company’s American broadband services are in line with expectations following the acquisition of the MetroCast cable systems in January.“We are now ready to launch TiVo and Internet speed upgrades to these customers,” he said.Companies in this story: (TSX:CCA)last_img read more