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Top Tory Leadership Hopefuls Commit To Marching In Pride Parades

Top Tory Leadership Hopefuls Commit To Marching In Pride ParadesScrutiny over the Conservative leader’s June weekend plans may be a thing of the past.

N.S. lobster shipments drop 'dramatically' to China due to coronavirus

N.S. lobster shipments drop 'dramatically' to China due to coronavirusThe coronavirus is putting the brakes on Nova Scotia lobster sales and shipments to China, which is a crucial market for Nova Scotia lobster exporters.Coronavirus is a flu-like illness that can cause pneumonia and other severe respiratory symptoms. There have been more than 100 deaths worldwide because of the virus, while there are more than 4,500 confirmed cases in China, which is where the outbreak began.Exporter Stewart Lamont of Tangier Lobster said the sharp drop in lobster exports to China happened in a matter of days."We've seen them diminish dramatically to the point that as of yesterday and today they're almost non-existent," he said."There's a recognition that the coronavirus is a significant health issue in mainland China. Under those circumstances, there aren't the normal people in the shops and the restaurants and the cafés."The so-called wet markets, the seafood markets, are essentially shut down in the short term and the government is encouraging people not to travel as they try to contain this virus."The Chinese New Year is normally a slow period for lobster exports, but it's being made much worse because of coronavirus.Lamont said the price at the wharf has also dropped in recent days from over $10 a pound to around $8.'It's not a panic yet'Leo Muise of the Nova Seafood Alliance said he's heard similar stories from other members of the industry."The market has been reduced greatly since Saturday," he said. "It's not a regulatory problem, it's a market problem. The citizens and people are restricted in travel and they are not going out to eat. It's not a panic yet, but it is concerning."Exporters continue to ship live lobsters all over the world.On Tuesday, Lamont's company loaded lobster for cargo flights to Belgium and South Korea.Huge sales to ChinaChina overtook the United States as the largest market for Canadian live lobster from August through October last year, continuing a trend of significantly rising sales to the Asian country following the advent of a trade war between the superpowers.Canadian live lobster sales to China outpaced those to the U.S. by $65 million during the three months, according to the latest export data released by Statistics Canada.All told, $384 million of Canadian lobster was sold to China in the first 10 months of 2019, compared to $428 million for the U.S.A trade deal between China and the U.S. was signed earlier this month. It does not reduce the 35 per cent tariff that was previously slapped on U.S. lobsters, but China has pledged to buy $32 billion worth of American agricultural products over the next two years, including lobster and other seafood products.MORE TOP STORIES

Teen killer in botched Nuns' Island robbery avoids adult sentence

Teen killer in botched Nuns' Island robbery avoids adult sentenceA teenager who pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and conspiracy to commit robbery after the botched robbery of an acquaintance on Montreal's Nuns' Island in November 2018 has avoided being sentenced as an adult.The Crown had originally sought an adult sentence for the young man, now 18, after he pleaded guilty last May.In a hearing Monday, the Crown prosecutor told youth court Judge Jacky Roy that the Crown now agreed with the defence that a sentence served in youth detention would be more appropriate, based on the fact the perpetrator had requested help and counselling.Roy sentenced the man to three years in youth detention.False seduction, botched robberyThe young man and his girlfriend, both 17 at the time of the killing, hatched a plot to steal 30 grams of marijuana from the 17-year-old victim, a school acquaintance.None of the teens can be identified because they were all minors at the time of the incident.The plan was for the girl to pretend to seduce the victim and lead him to a secluded area in the woods, where her boyfriend was waiting in hiding.When the girl arrived with the victim, her boyfriend grabbed him, and a struggle ensued. At some point, the boyfriend stabbed the victim in the thigh with a weapon that was never recovered.The girl and her boyfriend fled the scene without seeking help. The victim bled to death. His body was found by a passerby the next morning.The girl was sentenced to 30 months in youth detention last May.Accused wants to be 'a better human being'Tiago Murias, the lawyer for the young man sentenced Monday, told CBC the Crown dropped its request for an adult sentence after the young man expressed remorse and requested help, including one-on-one psychological counselling, animal therapy, and other support programs available to young offenders.Murias said his client was relieved the judge agreed to drop the adult sentence."He's just looking forward to getting all the help that he can, going to school, making some personal progress and just being a better human being," Murias said.Murias said the man briefly addressed the victim's family in court Monday, apologizing for the suffering he caused.He said his client also wrote a longer letter that will be delivered to the victim's mother.

Clock ticks on containing novel coronavirus

Clock ticks on containing novel coronavirusThere are two key unanswered questions surrounding the novel coronavirus: How easily can it be transmitted between people? And how dangerous is it? The next month in the outbreak could be critical in revealing clues to better answer those questions, infectious disease experts say.In Canada, officials have confirmed a case in Ontario, a presumptive case related to the first and a presumptive illness in British Columbia.Health officials in Canada and the U.S. stress that while human-to-human transmission of the virus has occurred, it is most likely when someone is in close, prolonged contact with a person who is infected. Chinese health authorities said Tuesday that the new coronavirus has infected more than 4,500 people in China, including 106 who've died. In Germany, Vietnam, Taiwan and Japan, the virus has spread person-to-person, rather than from a traveller arriving from China, heightening concerns the virus might transmit more easily than thought.The virus has also spread to several other countries.Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of the World Health Organization, met Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing on Tuesday to share information on the outbreak. "Both WHO and China noted that the number of cases being reported, including those outside China, is deeply concerning," the United Nations health agency said in statement on Tuesday. "Better understanding of the transmissibility and severity of the virus is urgently required to guide other countries on appropriate response measures." Early information during an outbreak should be viewed with caution because it is often based on the worst cases involving patients who die or need intensive care or hospitalization.   But how many people lack symptoms or aren't sick enough to seek medical care isn't known, so the full picture of the illness, such as the extent of mild cases, isn't yet clear. Dr. Michael Gardam, an infectious disease physician and chief of staff at Humber River Hospital in Toronto, said before symptoms start, the risk of someone spreading infectious particles is thought to be small. "When they have symptoms they are also coughing and spraying the virus out," Gardam said.Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told reporters that spread of the virus when people don't have symptoms is rare."In all the history of respiratory-borne viruses of any type, asymptomatic transmission has never been the driver of outbreaks," Fauci told reporters in Washington. "The driver of outbreaks is always a symptomatic person." Dr. Bonnie Henry, a provincial health officer for British Columbia who was an associate medical officer of health in Toronto during the 2002/03 SARS outbreak, said we are in a "critical period right now" for dealing with this new coronavirus. How the outbreak unfolds in the next month will shed light on whether the virus transmits easily between people or could be stamped out, Henry said. "The world needs to be in full containment mode." Henry said the public health response focuses on: * Detecting infected people early. * Isolating them appropriately. * Providing medical care for patients.Those containment measures aim to slow the geographic spread of the virus as well as the number of people who become infected and die.On Monday, federal public health officials announced they're stepping up staffing at airports in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver to support border officials in screening passengers arriving from China for symptoms. While the specifics of how well this new coronavirus transmits between people and its lethality aren't yet known, scientists are working under the assumption that like other respiratory cornaviruses, including SARS, the new virus spreads in droplets."When somebody coughs or sneezes and they breathe them in, we know that people get infected with the virus deep into the lung. We have receptors for these coronaviruses deep into the lungs," Henry said. In contrast, the measles virus is highly contagious and it can be transmitted through small droplets in the air that can last for hours. "This is not what we see with coronaviruses. Somebody has to be in the same air space usually within a maximum of two metres," Henry said. Canadian health officials want to offer guidance to airline passengers who sat within two metres or about three rows of the person with the first confirmed case in Canada and his wife. They took a flight on Jan. 21 from Wuhan to Guangzhou, then from Guangzhou to Toronto, arriving on Jan. 22. They were masked during the flight. While it's not clear how long the coronavirus can survive on hard surfaces, infectious disease experts consider simply walking past an ill passenger on a plane to be a low-risk situation. Dr. Barbara Yaffe, Ontario's associate chief medical officer of health, said to be tested, people need to meet two criteria: * Have respiratory symptoms like fever and cough. * Have travelled to Wuhan or the surrounding areas within the past 14 days.Canada's chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, said the risk to the general Canadian population from coronavirus remains low but more cases are expected.Tam said health officials will be looking at epidemiology or population health data to determine if travel advisories will be expanded beyond the affected regions in China. Health officials say the best ways to protect against all respiratory infections are to get an annual flu shot, wash your hands, try not to touch your face or mouth, cover coughs or sneezes and stay home when sick.

Deputy minister of education 'thrilled' with progress on inclusion

Deputy minister of education 'thrilled' with progress on inclusionNova Scotia's deputy minister of education says school-aged children are benefiting from the $30 million the McNeil government has put toward inclusion in classrooms during the past two years."I'm thrilled with where we are with respect to inclusion," Cathy Montreuil told reporters Tuesday following a 90-minute presentation before the provincial legislature's human resources committee.During her presentation to the committee, the deputy minister relied heavily on anecdotal proof that the hundreds of extra people hired by the province to implement the changes recommended by a commission in March 2018 have borne fruit.In her opening address, Montreuil told committee members about a 17-year-old Indigenous student from Trenton, N.S."Before I started the Alternative High School in Trenton I was not succeeding very well in school," Montreuil quoted the teen telling a school official. "I felt as if my dreams were falling apart and that I had become a disappointment to my family."I cannot stress enough that coming here has been the best school decision I have ever made."'Fastest is not necessarily the best'Montreuil also referred to a parent in Cape Breton who offered her perspective to education officials."My son hasn't made a friend in years, now he's coming home talking about having conversations with other students," Montreuil quoted the parent as saying. "I am so happy for him."Montreuil told the committee she is satisfied with the pace of change, 18 months into a five-year initiative."We recognize that there is more to do, a lot more," she said. "However, fastest is not necessarily the best."New Democrat committee member Claudia Chender expressed frustration at not having a clear idea of the government's direction, nor of how many of the recommendations promised in the March 2018 Students First report on inclusion had been completed.'We can't measure the progress'The NDP asked specifically for that information in an access-to-information request filed nearly a year ago. It received an eight-page document that was almost entirely blacked out."We have the Students First report which tells us what we need," said Chender. "We have a roadmap ... but if we don't know what steps they're taking, we can't measure the progress."Montreuil told the committee schools are now being asked to collect data in a way that allows them to identify specific problems, perhaps related to specific groups of students, so that officials can pinpoint issues and try to come up with solutions. "If in a school you see that there's a group of kids with special education needs that are lagging, it allows you to drill down and say how many of those are needing some more direct instruction in phonics or how many of those need more help with using technology to access reading," said Montreuil."So it allows you to get way more specific."Tuesday's committee was broadcast live to the web for the first time, and all other legislature committees will now be handled in the same way.Until now, only committee meetings held in the legislative chamber have been able to be broadcast live to the public.The provincial government recently equipped the committee room to be able to carry their work beyond the walls of the committee chamber.MORE TOP STORIES

Tuesday 28th of January 2020 07:54:36


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