http://www.thestar.com/

TORONTO STAR

TTC subway system 10 times more polluted than outside, study shows (mar., 25 avril 2017)
Waiting a long time for a subway can be annoying but a new study suggests it could do more than test your patience — it might also expose you to potentially harmful pollution. According to a study published Tuesday in the journal Environmental Science & TechnologyEnvironmental Science & Technology, concentrations of fine particulate matter on the Toronto subway system are roughly 10 times the level found outside TTC stations. At 95 micrograms per cubic metre, researchers say the levels are typical of an average day in pollution-choked Beijing. The study also found that concentrations measured on the TTC subway system were almost three times greater than those discovered on Montreal’s Metro and five times higher than those on Vancouver’s SkyTrain. The lead author of the study, Keith Van Ryswyk, said the research didn’t measure the health effects of the pollution and the findings shouldn’t deter anyone from taking public transit. But under some conditions, the kind of particulate matter that was measured, known as PM2.5, has been associated with lung problems, and Health Canada guidelines advise that indoor concentrations “should be kept as low as possible.” “That is to say, there isn’t a safe level of PM2.5, so reducing it in any environment where people spend their lives every day is a good idea,” said Van Ryswyk, a researcher at Health Canada’s air health science division. In a written statement, TTC spokesperson Stuart Green said the subway “remains a safe system for our customers and employees” and said the transit agency has been working for years to improve air quality underground. The study was a collaboration between Health Canada, McGill University, and the University of Toronto, and was part of ongoing work to measure air quality in commuter environments, which represent a significant daily source of pollution exposure for millions of Canadians. Over several weeks between 2010 and 2013, researchers used portable air samplers to measure the air quality on the platforms and inside the trains of rail systems in Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. The most abundant sampled element in the particulate matter on the TTC was iron, and manganese was also present. The ratios of the two substances led researchers to conclude that the source of the particulate was likely friction between the subway’s steel wheels and steel tracks. The two surfaces rubbing together produces a metal-heavy “rail dust” that is pumped allover the platform every time a train enters a TTC station, said Greg Evans, a U of T engineering professor and one of the co-authors of the study. “What happens is as the train moves down the tunnel, it’s like a piston that’s pushing all the air in front of it. What that does is any dust that’s in the tunnel gets re-entrained, basically gets blown around, so the concentrations in the station increase,” he said. Concentrations of fine particulate were much higher on TTC platforms than on the trains themselves, at 140 and 80.8 micrograms per cubic metre, respectively. Evans said the trains’ ventilation systems mitigate the exposure. The researchers concluded that the unique features of the three cities’ subway systems accounted for their differing levels of pollution. Vancouver’s SkyTrain has steel wheels and tracks just like the TTC, but about 80 per cent of the system is exposed to the air. Concentrations of fine particulate matter on the SkyTrain were just 19 micrograms per cubic metre. Montreal’s Metro is entirely underground, but its trains have rubber wheels that run on concrete “rollways,” and their brakes are operated with wooden shoes. The researchers determined that was likely why concentrations of fine particulate matter were found to be only 35 micrograms per cubic metre, about a third of those on the TTC. The authors estimated that while commuters spent just 4.9 per cent of their days on the subway system, doing so contributed 21.2 per cent of Toronto riders’ daily exposure to fine particulate matter. In Montreal and Vancouver the number was just over 11 per cent. “Considering the combined daily ridership of these three metro systems, a significant portion of Canada’s population is being exposed to these particulates on a daily basis,” the study said. The authors recommended that in order to reduce exposure, transit systems should improve ventilation and in-car filtration systems, and conduct regular rail dust cleaning. Green, the TTC spokesperson, said the agency was already taking steps to address air quality at the time the measurements were collected, including refurbishing HVAC systems on its older trains, introducing new Toronto Rocket subway cars with better HVAC systems, and purchasing a tunnel vacuum car equipped with at HEPA filtration system. Green added that the TTC plans to carry out a study this year to determine whether air quality is affecting subway workers’ health. “We will continue to work with Health Canada to monitor the steps we are already taking to improve air quality including the impact our mitigation measures have had,” he said.
>> Lire la suite

Toronto lawyer suspended over handling of Roma refugee cases (mar., 25 avril 2017)
A Toronto lawyer who has been found guilty of professional misconduct in representing Roma refugee claimants will be suspended for six months and placed under supervision for at least one year if he is to continue practising refugee law. The professional disciplinary action against Joseph Stephen Farkas followed similar penalties handed out earlier by the Law Society Tribunal against lawyers Viktor Hohots and Elizabeth Jaszi. Hohots was suspended for five months and barred from practising refugee law for two years while Jaszi was fined and disbarred. According to an Osgood Hall Law Journal article, the three lawyers represented a total of 986 Hungarian Roma refugee claimants between 2008 and 2012. Five of Farkas’ complainants retained new counsel, while at least one client was denied statutory stay of removal and deported in 2012 after the lawyer failed to file an application for leave in a timely fashion, according to the tribunal ruling. The tribunal said Farkas’ suspension will take effect at the end of April and ordered him to pay $200,000 in costs to the Law Society of Upper Canada within two years. “Upon resumption of his practice, Mr. Farkas shall practise refugee law only in association with and under the supervision of another lawyer . . . Both the plan of supervision and the supervisor shall be approved by the Law Society’s Executive Director,” said the tribunal order. “The approved plan of supervision and the supervisor shall continue for a definite period of one year and then indefinitely until the Executive Director is satisfied that the plan and the supervisor are no longer required.” Farkas faced complaints from 10 former clients who claimed the lawyer was not directly involved in assisting them in their asylum claims, which one expert witness said “were vague, lacked important details and contained mistakes in spelling and grammar.” Advocates for Roma refugees have for years blamed the group’s low asylum acceptance rates on the poor legal representation they received during the asylum process. Most Roma claimants say they face ethnic discrimination and persecution. Farkas testified he recalled being directly involved in the preparation process for many of the complainants. The tribunal said it heard “conflicting and inconsistent” evidence from the lawyer’s two Hungarian interpreters, Szilvia Sztranyak and Tamas Buzai, about his involvement. Farkas’ current lawyers, Marie Henein and Kenneth Grad, did not respond to the Star’s request for comment for this article. His former counsel, Samuel Robinson, said before thedisciplinary order was handed down that his client intended to appeal the guilty verdict by the tribunal. In disregarding the law society’s request to revoke Farkas’ licence, the tribunal said it took into consideration that the lawyer had no prior disciplinary record and expressed remorse, as well as changing his refugee law practices to become more directly involved with his clients. “In ordering a six-month suspension as opposed to the revocation of licence, we are by no means endorsing the view that because no money has been stolen and no financial fraud has been committed, the lawyer’s conduct is thus not serious enough to warrant the harshest of penalties,” the tribunal said. “The panel is fully aware that refugee claimants in general are vulnerable persons whose very life, liberty and security interests are at stake every time they are engaged in a legal process . . . The action of an incompetent refugee lawyer can have far more devastating impact than a dishonest lawyer who steals from his or her clients.”
>> Lire la suite

Toronto cop guilty of assault made Sunshine List while suspended (mar., 25 avril 2017)
An incident in which an on-duty Toronto police sergeant assaulted a man in a Scarborough parking lot and then drove away, leaving the victim collapsed on the ground, came to light after an account from a bystander and Toronto Community Housing Corporation surveillance footage, according to recently filed court documents. Last week, Toronto police Sgt. Robert Goudie pleaded guilty to assaulting Hamza Sheikh, then 47, outside the man’s residence in October 2015, an incident that began with Goudie approaching Sheikh believing he had been driving while impaired. In January 2016, Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) charged Goudie with assault causing bodily harm and failing to provide the necessities of life; the latter charge was dropped at the request of the Crown prosecutor, while Goudie pleaded guilty to assault. “The defendant’s application of force to Mr. Sheikh was unjustified and excessive,” reads an agreed statement of facts filed in court last week. The veteran police officer has been given a conditional discharge, meaning he is now subject to six months’ probation, which includes a ban on contacting Sheikh. He was also ordered to pay a $100 victim surcharge to Sheikh. Goudie has been suspended with pay from the Toronto Police Service since November 2015. Nonetheless, he made Ontario’s Sunshine List in 2016, earning $116,000. Meaghan Gray, a spokesperson for the Toronto Police, said in an email the suspension is under review now that the criminal case has concluded and the police service can proceed with a related disciplinary charge. Goudie faces one count of discreditable conduct under the Police Services Act for being charged with a criminal offence. According to the summary of facts filed in court, Goudie was alone on patrol just after 4 a.m. on Oct. 31, 2015, when he spotted Sheikh’s vehicle and believed he was an impaired driver. Goudie, driving a marked police vehicle, followed him into the parking area near 10 Gordonridge Place, near Danforth and Brimley Rds., then approached Sheikh after he parked his car, the court document states. Surveillance footage, though low quality and shot from a distance, captured a 33-second discussion between Goudie and Sheikh, who was standing near his car with the driver’s side door open. Then, Goudie “took hold” of Sheikh and forced him to the ground on a grassy boulevard near the cars, then pinned him with his right knee for 20 seconds and “appeared to search him.” Goudie got up off of Sheikh, shone his flashlight into the man’s vehicle, then removed a crutch from inside and “tossed it towards” Sheikh. Court heard that Sheikh had pre-existing spinal injuries. Sheikh “remained prone and motionless on the ground” at this time, according to the documents. The officer then walked back to his car and drove off. Goudie never reported the stop or arrested Sheikh, although he had reasonable grounds to do so, according to the court documents. “(Goudie) believed at that time that Mr. Sheikh was conscious,” according to the statement of facts. Sheikh remained on the ground in the same position for 30 minutes, until a Toronto police car and ambulance arrived in response to an emergency call. Paramedics found Sheikh on the ground wearing a neck brace, and noticed a strong odour of alcohol and signs of impairment. The court documents do not explain who made the emergency call, but a document filed with the Toronto Police Services Board agenda last week states police and paramedics were summoned to the scene by a 4:13 a.m. call reporting an officer had assaulted a member of the public. Police and paramedics arrived at 4:34 a.m. According to the police board document, which summarizes the internal probe that must take place after every SIU investigation, the officers who responded were then directed by a superior to leave and “the incident was abandoned without further investigation or documentation,” the report states. That superior was later identified as Goudie, according to the police board document. In an interview Monday, Goudie’s lawyer Gary Clewley vehemently disputed the contents of the Toronto police board document, saying that whoever wrote it “had nothing to do with the investigation.” “I can tell you this much for sure: officer Goudie did not terminate or interfere with the investigation of this incident. Period.” Clewley also stressed that the court did not find as fact that Sheikh lost consciousness following the assault. According to the court document, Sheikh was taken to a hospital, where he refused assessment and voluntarily left before he saw a doctor. The Crown prosecutor was unable to prove Goudie’s use of force caused Sheikh any bodily harm, according to the court document. Sheikh claimed that he had no memory of the incident. At a medical appointment three days after the incident, Sheikh exhibited no signs of a head injury, the court document states. Sheikh said he contacted police to complain about the incident only after he was informed about what transpired by the neighbour who witnessed it. Sheikh’s complaint generated an investigation by the Toronto police Criminal Investigations Bureau. Two weeks later, Toronto Community Housing informed police about the contents of its surveillance footage of the incident, according to the police board document. The SIU was contacted the following day and took over the investigation. Goudie was suspended the same day. The sergeant’s professional misconduct hearing continues. Wendy Gillis can be reached at wgillis@thestar.ca
>> Lire la suite

Better Raptors revert to the Norm: Arthur (mar., 25 avril 2017)
The seven-foot Brazilian with the sea anemone hair and the non-stop smile listened intently, his face sober and serious. Lucas (Bebe) Nogueira would joke later that he asked Raptors teammate Norman Powell to adopt him when he gets his next contract, because Bebe always jokes. But mostly, his dinner-plate eyes wide, he listened. “I just ask him, how,” said Nogueira, after Toronto’s 118-93 blowout of the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 5 of their first-round series. “Because I think he’s the best value in the league. He makes $900,000. And tonight he plays like a $20-million player. I struggle with my focus and my confidence, and I see him in here every day. Every day. He doesn’t play, but he never complains. I’m not saying that just because I’m in front of you. He never complains. And he’s an inspiration to me. He is really an inspiration.” Powell had just exploded for a playoff career-high 25 points, along with four rebounds, four assists, three steals, one block on 8-for-11 shooting. He was fearless, defiant, effective. It was the defining game of his young career, and he sat in his leather chair in a white shirt and an off-white jacket waiting to join his all-star teammates on the post-game podium. And Bebe, the joker, came over to ask advice. “He’s talked to me about how he’s proud of me and how I motivated him,” said the second-year Powell, in a quiet moment. “But he really came to me about how he feels about me, and everything I’ve been through, and how I came to work, and my focus, and my potential. So I just tried to give him a little motivational words to keep his focus ... I just told him about keeping goals in mind, setting expectations for himself, no matter what anybody says. Seeing the bigger picture and working towards that, no matter what happens.” Powell wasn’t the only reason Toronto won the game, but he was a reason. This team has struggled with its confidence in this series, especially moving and shooting the ball in the face of Milwaukee’s long-limbed blitzing. Houston coach Mike D’Antoni likes to say that the ball finds energy, and when it does, it changes everything. It’s the mysticism of basketball, the intangible, the ineffable, but not the ineff-up-a-ble. And in this game, with point guard Kyle Lowry working through back stiffness, and DeMar DeRozan off to a cold start, it was the other Raptors who set the tone. Serge Ibaka opened with a three and a driving dunk. DeMarre Carroll was even hitting floaters. And Powell, with his don’t-ask-questions style, never seemed to have a moment of doubt. Early in the game Powell, who is six-foot-four in shoes, drove and tried to score over Giannis Antetokounmpo, who is approximately 19 feet tall with his arms outstretched. It didn’t work, but I bet Norm Powell wouldn’t blink if he opened a door and found a tiger on the other side. And as the game went on, with the Raptors moving the ball, Powell found more cracks than anyone. Powell started 18 games when DeRozan was injured, and then was put back under glass: he played a combined six minutes in the first two games of the series. He’s at a combined 68 the last two games. “I think Powell has come in with a lot of energy on both sides of the ball,” said Milwaukee coach Jason Kidd. “They are feeding off of that ... he’s picked them up here in the last couple of games, just with his energy and his spirit. Somehow we have to match that. We’ve got to have someone who can match his spirit to give us a chance.” Despite some hiccups the Raptors led nearly wire to wire, and looked like the team they are supposed to be. When they made shots, they seemed more likely to share the ball, starting with Lowry and DeRozan. The ball found energy, and eventually everyone joined in. This was the Raptors team that is better than the Bucks, and should know it. “I think that’s the biggest thing and the most important thing, is just sharing the ball, and the more you share the ball the more guys get confidence in themselves and the more Kyle and DeMar trust us,” said Carroll, who had 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting. “So we just got to keep doing it, keep trying to gel.” It is also the deepest Raptors team in franchise history, and Powell is one of the pieces. After his three-pointer to make it 70-55 with eight minutes left in the third — the sixth of seven straight made three-pointers over two games — he stared down the Bucks bench. Confidence. With 4:42 left and the game almost out of reach, he drove baseline and dunked over approximately 27 combined feet of Milwaukee Bucks. Norm. He dunked one last time with 36 seconds left, a valedictory. Finally, a real Raptors playoff blowout. Afterwards, Powell talked about studying tapes of Kyle Korver and Larry Bird to improve his three-point shooting, which wasn’t a strength when he came into the league. He talked about extra work and adjustments, but also shooting it like he meant it. And before that Bebe wandered over, and asked his 23-year-old teammate for advice. “It means a lot,” said Powell. “He’s very open, expressive about his feelings, and I didn’t know what he was going to talk about. It’s something special when the guys around you see your work, and see everything that you’re going through, and how you’re pushing, and being an inspiration to them. It means a lot. It definitely hit home for me. It just makes me want to be that much better teammate to him, and to the rest of the guys.” Norm couldn’t get over Antetokounmpo when he tried, but the Raptors could. They should know they are the better team, now. All they need to do is believe it.
>> Lire la suite

Lawyer’s group wants hard cap on referral fees (mar., 25 avril 2017)
Most referral fees paid between lawyers will be under $5,000 if a recommendation to the Law Society of Upper Canada is accepted, a report reveals. And clients who were previously in the dark over referrals and the fees associated with them will now see the payments as part of an agreement all parties will be asked to sign. A recent Star investigation found that some lawyers, particularly in the personal injury business, were farming out clients and taking hefty fees as a referral payment, while another firm did the work. “We want clients to know their rights and make their own choices,” said Malcolm Mercer, chair of the Law Society of Upper Canada working group that has been studying the issue. The recommended plan suggests that the referral fee will be calculated with a “sliding cap.” The referring lawyer will get 15 per cent of the first $50,000 of the legal fee and 5 per cent of the legal fee over that. Given that lawyers often make about $30,000 in contingency fee cases — you don’t pay unless they win — the referral fee would typically be $5,000 or lower. “We want to make sure that the cost of legal services are not increased by referral fees and that service is not impaired by referral fees. We want to ensure that clients aren’t misled by deceptive advertising,” Mercer said. A transparency recommendation suggests creation of a “referral agreement” that must be signed by everyone involved in a referral, including the referring lawyer, the lawyer getting the file and the client. The Star found that some law firms advertised so heavily that they received more business than they could handle. These files were farmed out to other law firms for a fee that was not regulated or controlled. Clients who called one firm would learn they had been shunted to another firm only when a new lawyer called them to arrange an appointment. Mercer said his group’s responsibility is not to target particular firms with the cap on referrals fees but to distinguish between legitimate referral fees and inappropriate fees paid to other lawyers, which may affect clients. The law society will vote on the proposals at its Thursday Convocation meeting. If approved, the proposals would apply only to referral arrangements entered into after April 2017. The recommendations come less than two months after the law society’s elected “benchers” voted to cap referral fees — rather than ban them outright — and make the referral fee process more transparent. It also comes on the heels of part of the Star’s ongoing investigation into Ontario’s personal injury lawyers. The Star has found some personal injury lawyers take hefty referral fees, including “up front” fees paid when the referral is made — long before a settlement has been reached. Often, the accident victim was unaware that a referral fee has been paid, the Star found. In some cases, the Star found that referral fees were requested “up front,” before the case was passed on to another firm. In February, the law society also voted to ban “up front” referral fees in addition to cracking down on lawyer marketing, including mandating that lawyers can no longer advertise for services they don’t intend to provide. In the 11-page report released Monday, the working group said referral fees can only be paid when a settlement is reached and outlined its rationale for capping referral fees rather than banning them. The working group believes that by making the referral fees transparent, and by instituting a cap, they will facilitate access to legal services and address the problem of “excessive” referral fees that may be the result of law firm advertising and reduce the risk that unqualified lawyers will keep files they can’t handle. In explaining its decision to recommend banning of up front fees, the working group stated these fees can be “very large” and risk misaligning the interests of the lawyer and the client. These fees run the risk of “detrimentally impacting the quality of service the client may receive.” In its deliberations about how much to cap the fees at, the report’s authors said they considered taking referral fees back to historic levels, between 10 and 15 per cent of a lawyer’s legal fees, but noted that “too low a cap would have the same effect as a ban, and that this result would be inappropriate.” Rather, the working group proposed that lawyers take 15 per cent of the first $50,000 of their fee after a settlement has been reached and 5 per cent of any additional fees recovered as part of the settlement up to a maximum of $25,000. For example, in a case that settles for $100,000, the legal fee would be about $33,000 and the referral fee would total $5,000, the report said. The calculations assume that lawyers are working on contingency — you don’t pay unless the lawyer’s win — and charge 33.3 per cent as their legal fee. A case would have to settle for more than $1 million for a lawyer to receive the maximum referral fee. Those cases are rare. According to a 2014 auto insurance study, the report said, 69 per cent of claimants got settlements less than $100,000. In cases where the client recovers $50,000, the referral fee would be $2,500. The Law Society group has prepared a document about referral fees called “What Clients Need to Know.” In it, they provide an explanation of referral fees and clients’ rights. It warns that when it comes to referral fees, these fees are “not permitted to increase the amount of the legal fees charged to you.” Claire Wilkinson, president elect of the Ontario Trial Lawyers Association, which represents more than 1,600 of Ontario’s personal injury lawyers, clerks and staff, said OTLA is pleased the law society is trying to provide greater clarity and transparency to the consumer. “It’s a good idea that’s in the public interest,” she said.
>> Lire la suite

Wynne housing plan likely to cause pause in home buying: Report (mar., 25 avril 2017)
New provincial measures to cool the rollicking Toronto region housing market could finally prompt harried home buyers to take a breath and figure out how the new rules affect their personal circumstances long-term. It is difficult to predict how the 15-per cent foreign buyers’ tax announced by Premier Kathleen Wynne will impact the market, says the Re/Max 2017 Spring Market Trends Report published Tuesday. While a similar tax turned down the heat in Vancouver, Toronto is a bigger city and foreign investment isn't considered to be as big a factor here, although data is scarce. Re/Max says it's safe to assume, however, that the new Ontario measures that apply to the Greater Golden Horseshoe will impact the middle class as well as the luxury end of the market. "It's a shock to the market," said Pamela Alexander, CEO of Re/Max Integra Ontario-Atlantic Canada. "Whenever there's any kind of shock to the market — whether they raise interest rates or put new mortgage rules in — there's always this pause," she said. "This is probably going to have its period of a few months of adjustment and then the market will return to its new normal," said Alexander, who praised most of the measures in the Liberal government's 16-point plan. She expressed reservations, however, about the expansion of rent controls to units occupied after 1991. Some investors who have been buying condos over the last 15 years may see this as a trigger to exit the market, said Alexander. "People may say, 'I've had a great run, I've capitalized on the upward swing, but I don't know how much further that upward swing is going to go and I don't know if I can manage this with a profit with the new caps in place,'" said Alexander. In the Toronto area, where the cost of a home rose $200,000 on average in the first quarter of this year over last — to $873,631 — buyers are on the hunt for affordability, says the Re/Max report. A survey of about 7,000 of the company's active agents and brokers in the Toronto-region suggests that increasingly means looking outside the downtown. Purchasers are increasingly frustrated with the lack of homes on the market and the high costs, said Alexander. "They're realizing after being let down they are just at this point of time they're not going to be able to find what they're looking in the area they most desire and they're just going to have to expand the sphere of where they're looking," she said. That trend is driving prices as far away as Windsor and Kingston, says the report. In Windsor, prices rose 17 per cent on average year over year in the first quarter, up $35,554 to $246,775. In the same period, Kingston home prices rose 11 per cent to $323,343 on average up $32,751. New taxes aimed at curbing speculation by foreign buyers helped push Greater Vancouver prices down 11 per cent in the first quarter since the same period last year. The average price there was $969,900, according to Re/Max. An online Leger panel of 1,570 Canadians showed that 68 per cent of Ontario residents consider the location of their home to be more important than the style or size of the residence. Price followed by access to green space and parks, and proximity to work were the primary home-buying considerations, according to the poll respondents. Among millennials (aged 18 to 34), proximity to work edged out access to green space as the second most important factor in purchasing. Forty-six per cent of Canadians and Ontarians said they felt like they could buy the kind of home that suits their families' needs. The Leger survey, conducted between March 27 and 30 is considered accurate within 2.5 per cent 19 times out of 20. Ontario home markets Kitchener-Waterloo Average first-quarter price: +29% to $468,877 Average first-quarter condo price: +21% to $280,872 Driving the market: Increased transit access thanks to expanded GO train service and a new LRT. Detached, single-family homes saw the most activity. Hamilton-Burlington Average first-quarter price: +23% to $575,004 Average first-quarter condo price: +26% to $391,770 Driving the market: Move-over buyers from the Toronto region comprised 23 per cent of all purchases. Investors were snapping up small detached houses and townhouses to use as rentals. Barrie Average first-quarter price: +39% to $525,830 Average first-quarter condo price: +33% to $323,622 Driving the market: Local move-up buyers and purchasers from other parts of the Toronto region went looking for value. That is expected to continue as those buyers and foreign investors continue to be attracted by the development in 2018 of thousands of acres of farm land. Oakville Average first-quarter price: +32% to $1.3 million Average first-quarter condo price: +38% to $606,169 Driving the market: Foreign buyers are particularly interested in luxury homes in the $3-million+ market. Sellers are increasingly cashing in their equity and leasing their homes back to live in. Brampton Average first-quarter price: +35% to $731,798 Average first-quarter condo price: +35% to $401,620 Driving the market: Move-up and move-over buyers from around the region, as well as foreign purchasers, are attracted by the relatively affordable prices of detached homes. Homes move quickly here — within seven days on average. Source: Re/Max 2017 Spring Market Trends Report
>> Lire la suite

Black students hindered by academic streaming, suspensions: Report (mar., 25 avril 2017)
Black children in the GTA may start kindergarten feeling confident and excited to learn, but too many are “gradually worn down” by schools that stream them into applied courses and suspend them at much higher rates than other students, says a new report from York University. The report found that while academic streaming was supposed to have ended in 1999, black students are twice as likely to be enrolled in applied instead of academic courses compared to their counterparts from other racial backgrounds. And they are more than twice as likely to have been suspended from school at least once during high school. “Black students face an achievement and opportunity gap in GTA schools,” says the study led by York University professor Carl James. “All evidence point(s) to the need for action if the decades-old problem is to be addressed.” The findings were based on data from the Toronto District School Board — the only board to regularly collect race-based statistics, though a similar move is underway at the Peel District School Board. Consultations with 324 black parents, community members, educators, school trustees and students indicated “the same patterns exist in other GTA school boards,” said James. Because much of the information in the 80-page report was produced by the TDSB’s research department, it comes as no surprise to director of education John Malloy. “We aren’t running away from what the data is telling us, we’re willing to face it,” he said in an interview. He said the board’s new equity framework plan launched last fall involves a sweeping review of everything from board policies to personal attitudes among staff and the barriers students of different backgrounds face when it comes to accessing programs and courses. Streaming, which places students in academic or university-bound courses instead of the more hands-on applied courses based on perceived ability, is a key piece, he said. The practice has been found to hit low-income kids and certain racial groups such as black students hardest. Several high schools in Toronto have already launched pilot projects to end streaming in some Grade 9 and 10 courses, so that students aren’t making decisions so early that will affect their futures. And two years ago, a TDSB report called for streaming to be phased out and undertook to expand the pilots. But there are currently only about five in place. “I think we are beginning to get a groundswell of support,” says Monday Gala, principal of C.W. Jefferys Collegiate, which was the first to begin a destreaming initiative and no longer offers applied options in Grade 9 geography, English, science or French or Grade 10 history, English and science. But across the system, it’s one change “I wish would move faster,” added Gala. The school provides extra tutoring and lunchtime and after-school support and has seen pass rates increase across the board. A similar result took place at Runnymede Collegiate, which this year offered only academic English to Grade 9 students and is hoping to add geography next year, said principal Paul Edwards. Eliminating streaming is one of the many recommendations in the new York University report, which also calls for mandatory collection of race-based data by all school boards to illuminate barriers; use of alternative discipline measures, steps to diversify the teaching workforce, and ministry and board policies to address anti-black racism. Among its other findings: Between 2006 and 2011 — the latest period for which TDSB data is available — only 53 per cent of black students were in an academic stream program versus 81 per cent of white students and 80 per cent of other racial groups. Forty-two per cent of black students had been suspended at least once during high school compared with 18 per cent of white students and 15 per cent of other racial groups. It also cited more recent stats showing almost half the 213 students expelled in the five-year period ending in 2015-16 were black. Sixty-nine per cent of black students graduated between 2006 and 2011 versus 87 per cent of other non-white students and 84 per cent of white students. Twenty per cent — twice as many as the other groups — dropped out. Fifty-eight per cent of black kids did not apply to post-secondary school versus 41 per cent in the other two groups.
>> Lire la suite

Elite teen soccer team suspended after ‘roughhousing’ video surfaces (mar., 25 avril 2017)
An elite youth soccer team was temporarily suspended after video surfaced that appeared to show players beating a teammate. The Vaughan Soccer Club suspended its team of 14- and 15-year-olds while staff tried to find out what happened and who was involved, said club executive vice-president Pat Di Rauso. After meeting with parents and players Monday night, club staff determined that the incident began as roughhousing and “got out of hand,” Di Rauso said. Club staff will meet Tuesday to discuss possible punishments for the individual players involved. “They’re good kids,” Di Rauso said, adding that he does not want to see any of the players unfairly labelled as troublemakers. The video shows several teenage boys laughing and mugging for the camera in a hotel hallway. “Let’s get him,” says one boy. The door to one of the hotel rooms opens and a shoving match appears to break out between a boy who was in the room and some of the boys in the hallway. At least three of the boys end up on the bed inside the room. Punches appear to be exchanged. Eventually the boy from the room is pinned by one of the others. Near the end of the video, he is seen lying on the bed holding his stomach and groaning while the other boys leave the room. Di Rauso told the Star that the incident took place while the team was in Italy for a tournament between April 8 and 18. “When I left these kids, these guys were singing and hugging. These guys were a team,” Di Rauso said. “When I saw this (video) I went, ‘Where did this come from?’ ” The trip was chaperoned by coaches and the players’ parents, said Di Rauso, who accompanied the team on the first half of the trip. “All the parents were present,” Di Rauso added. “That’s why we don’t understand ... Why did none of the children go to the parents?” Club officials were first made aware of the video late Saturday night, after a media outlet showed it to them, said Di Rauso. It seems that one of the players sent the video to a friend, whose mother saw it and notified the media, he said. Di Rauso said that the club has not contacted police about the video and that, to his knowledge, no one else has either. “If the parent wants to press charges, we welcome them,” he said. The team seen in the video is part of the Ontario Player Development League, a prestigious program for teenage soccer players working their way towards college scholarships, a spot on provincial or national teams or even a professional soccer career. Registration fees at the Vaughan Soccer Club are approximately $3,600 per year, said Di Rauso.
>> Lire la suite

Trudeau says his father used connections to help brother Michel avoid criminal record after pot charge (mar., 25 avril 2017)
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says his younger brother, Michel, was able to avoid a criminal record after he was caught with marijuana because of his father’s connections. Trudeau revealed the little-known fact about his brother, who died in a B.C. avalanche about 20 years ago, during a broadcast interview with Vice Media on Monday night about the government’s plan to legalize marijuana. He said six months before Michel’s death, he was charged with possession of marijuana after he was involved in a collision on the highway while he was driving home to Montreal from the West Coast. Police had found a Sucrets box with a couple of joints inside when they were helping him collect his belongings that were scattered across the highway. Trudeau said his father contacted his friends in the legal community to get Michel a good lawyer. “He was very confident that we were able to make those charges go away,” Trudeau said of his father, former prime minister Pierre Trudeau. “We were able to do that because we had resources, my dad had a couple connections and we were confident that my little brother wasn’t going to be saddled with a criminal record for life.” Trudeau used the anecdote to highlight how minorities and people with little means often don’t have the option to clear their name in the justice system — something he said legalizing the drug will help fix. “That’s one of the fundamental unfairnesses of this current system is that it affects different communities in a different way,” he said. Trudeau stuck to his government’s stance that the move to legalize marijuana for recreational use by July 1, 2018, doesn’t mean lax law enforcement during the transition period. However, he suggested that the government will look at ways to help people charged with marijuana possession. Although he did not give specifics, he said the government would only look into the matter once the laws have been changed. “Until we actually change the law, we can’t take steps towards moving retroactively,” Trudeau said. “In the meantime, our focus is on making sure we’re changing the legislation to fix what’s broken about a system that is hurting Canadians ... and then we’ll take steps to look at what we can do for those people who have criminal records for something that would no longer be criminal.” The newly tabled legislation will allow people 18 and older to publicly possess up to 30 grams of dried cannabis, or its equivalent in non-dried form.
>> Lire la suite

Trump threatens 20 per cent tariff on Canadian softwood lumber (lun., 24 avril 2017)
The United States has fired the opening shot in a latest softwood-lumber war against Canada, with the Trump administration announcing its first batch of duties on imported wood in the neighbourhood of 20 per cent. The move was expected: the historic dispute over lumber pricing has led to once-a-decade trade skirmishes over the issue, resulting in American duties, then the inevitable court battles, and ultimately negotiated settlements. What wasn’t expected Monday was the enthusiasm with which the new American administration flung itself into the lumber hostilities, touting its incoming countervailing duties as an example of U.S. President Donald Trump’s tough, America-first trade posture. Read more: What Donald Trump’s anti-Canada rant means: Walkom Canada in for rougher NAFTA talks than Trump suggested, trade experts say Trump underscored the impending move by announcing it to a gathering of conservative media on the eve of the expected announcement. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross also highlighted it in an interview. Then came a statement that said U.S. Customs will begin collecting cash deposits from Canadian logging companies because they receive a range of subsidies — most of them allegedly about 20 per cent. “It has been a bad week for U.S.-Canada trade relations,” said Ross, in a statement that went out of its way to link this dispute to one involving dairy, and tying it all to broader complaints about NAFTA. “This is not our idea of a properly functioning free trade agreement.” This entire dispute will play out amid the backdrop of a bigger trade file — the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement. Neither lumber nor dairy are part of the current NAFTA, and different actors would want to add provisions on one or the other. What comes after Monday’s countervailing duties is a study of possible anti-dumping duties, followed by a final determination by the U.S. Commerce Department as early as Sept. 7, and ultimately one of three possible outcomes: an agreement, a surprise retreat from the U.S. government, or a potential years-long court battle. Canada’s government condemned the announcement. In a statement, the federal government called the move unfair, baseless, unfounded and it promised help for its industry. “The Government of Canada strongly disagrees with (this) decision to impose an unfair and punitive duty,” said Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr. “The accusations are baseless and unfounded.” He said the action hurts people in both countries — not only Canada’s lumber sector that employs hundreds of thousands, but also American homebuyers, who must now pay more for wood. The buildup to this new lumber war began with the 2015 expiry of a decade-old agreement. It stems from a fundamental, long-standing dispute over whether Canadian companies’ access to public land constitutes a subsidy. The U.S. administration delivered its long-awaited verdict Monday; it concluded Canadian companies benefit from subsidies ranging from three per cent in the case of J.D. Irving Ltd., to a high of 24.12 per cent for West Fraser Mills, with most companies coming in around 19.88 per cent. Duties will be collected retroactively, too — the U.S. says it will gather them for the previous 90 days. Industry analysts have been expecting the combined duties, Monday’s and the upcoming ones, to range between 30 and 40 per cent. In Canada, pressure will mount on the federal government. The Liberals have adopted an understated, under-the-radar approach to dealing with Trump. Now they’re being pressed into an open dispute, all while dealing with multiple sensitive Canada-U.S. files: softwood negotiations, upcoming NAFTA renegotiations, complaints about Canadian dairy, and a frustrated lumber industry at home. There are already requests for financial help for Canada’s forestry sector. A government source said conversations are underway, but there won’t be an immediate announcement on that front. The Canadian government will wait to see the details of various punitive measures before calculating the aid amount. It took the federal government more than a year to announce the first of two aid packages after duties were imposed in 2001. The statement from Ottawa late Monday promised immediate help through existing programs — like one that finances exporters, and an innovation-related program to develop the use of wood in tall buildings. Ministers are also travelling to China, the United Kingdom and Europe to promote market diversification. A federal-provincial task force intends to meet this week. Quebec Economic Development Minister Dominique Anglade urged Ottawa to help forest companies, but said Monday the province will act immediately: “Day 1, we will be there to support the industry,” she said in an interview. Meanwhile, Ontario named former federal trade minister Jim Peterson as its chief softwood lumber negotiator on Monday. He joins former federal cabinet minister David Emerson who represents B.C. and former U.S. Ambassador Raymond Chretien who is Quebec’s negotiator. Unifor union president Jerry Dias called on Ottawa to respond to the duties to avoid a repeat of the situation when 15,000 were laid off within months of a combined duty of 27 per cent being imposed in the early 2000s. “It’s hard to exaggerate the impact tariffs will have on hundreds of small communities. The federal government needs to have a plan in place and act swiftly,” he said in a news release. However, provinces aren’t in total agreement about financial support. British Columbia has said it is cautious out of fear that assistance will be construed by the Americans as unfairly helping the Canadian industry. B.C. producers such as West Fraser Timber and Canfor are in a stronger position to weather a U.S. trade battle because they have purchased sawmills in the U.S. and expanded exports to China. In Central Canada, sawmills tend to be smaller, don’t have as much cash flow to pay duties and are therefore more at risk of closing, experts say. That’s why Ontario and Quebec producers have been pushing Ottawa to provide loan guarantees to help them pay duties and stay in business.
>> Lire la suite

Nurse’s lawyer challenges Michael Leblanc’s version of events (mar., 25 avril 2017)
After nurse Joanna Flynn took Michael Leblanc’s wife off life support on March 2, 2014, she told him she was sorry for his loss and hugged him, Leblanc testified Monday. At the time he had no idea something had gone wrong. Deanna Leblanc, 39, had been taken off life support by Flynn without the authorization of a doctor at the Georgian Bay General Hospital — a fact admitted at Flynn’s manslaughter trial in Barrie. “I didn’t think there would be an investigation,” defence lawyer Samantha Peeris quoted Leblanc as saying after charges were laid in April 2015. “I didn’t realize anybody had done anything wrong.” Read More: Husband of Deanna Leblanc describes his wife’s final hours to jury Jury must weigh whether nurse who took Deanna Leblanc off life support caused her death Flynn, 51, is on trial for manslaughter and criminal negligence causing death, accused of causing Deanna Leblanc’s death by taking her off life support without a doctor’s permission after coercing consent from Michael Leblanc. She has pleaded not guilty. On Monday, Flynn’s lawyer Peeris disputed Michael’s testimony that Flynn pressured him into making a quick decision to take his wife off life support, and that she told him he could either have his wife die peacefully or watch her heart explode. Peeris also challenged his testimony that the first time he learned that Deanna was brain-dead and on life-support was from Flynn. Michael, 51, testified last week that a doctor had told him not to give up hope and stressed that Deanna was young and strong. Instead, Peeris suggested that multiple doctors and nurses had told Michael that Deanna had suffered severe brain damage and that she was both brain-dead and unresponsive. A doctor, she suggested, told Michael there was no hope. Michael said he was told Deanna had suffered brain damage, possibly severe brain damage, but until Flynn no one had told him she would not recover. Peeris suggested that after Flynn started her night shift at 7 p.m., she pulled Michael away to talk to him about a do-not-resuscitate order. Michael told Flynn that he was just waiting for another family member to arrive to say his goodbyes before “pulling the plug,” Peeris said. Michael said he did not say that. “That is like putting oil into a car after the engine has blown up,” Peeris suggested he told Flynn after Flynn explained that a doctor had taken some fluid from Deanna’s leg to check for an infection. Michael also denied saying those words, but recalls the doctor examining Deanna’s knee — she had been in for a routine knee operation at a Newmarket hospital two days prior. When Michael and Deanna’s two teenage sons came to say their goodbyes that evening, Peeris said Flynn reassured them that Deanna was in no pain. “When Flynn came back into the room she suggested to you that you sleep on your decision and that you should revisit it with the doctor … in the morning,” Peeris said. Michael said that didn’t happen. “You indicated that nothing was going to change, that the whole family was there and that Deanna wouldn’t want this,” Peeris said. Michael said that when he said Deanna wouldn’t want this, he was responding to a question from Flynn about what Deanna would want in this situation. Peeris suggested that Flynn again asked if Michael needed more time to think about it, and that Michael responded that he was sure. Michael denied this. All he said he recalled saying to Flynn about deciding to take Deanna off life support was: “OK” or nodding his head. Michael maintained that he was not sure what word Flynn used to describe what was going to happen to his wife’s heart — but said that his understanding was that it would explode. Peeris also suggested Michael discussed the possibility of having to take Deanna off life-support with Deanna’s father. Michael said he did not recall that and did not recall having a conversation with any family member about life support. Deanna Leblanc died at 8:15 p.m. after being admitted to the hospital early on the morning of the same day with her vital signs absent, the jury has heard. It took 2.5 hours to resuscitate her, an emergency room doctor has testified. The trial continues.
>> Lire la suite

French presidential candidate Le Pen steps down as head of National Front party (lun., 24 avril 2017)
PARIS—A day after mainstream parties were dealt a heavy defeat in the French presidential election, far-right leader Marine Le Pen, one of the two candidates to advance to a runoff, condemned the parties’ calls to unite against her and support her rival, independent centrist Emmanuel Macron. Le Pen’s statement on Monday denouncing “the old and completely rotten Republican Front” — the coalition of mainstream parties allied against her — sums up her challenge in the May 7 runoff. So far, not a single rival party has called for its voters to support Le Pen. And she has no plausible major reservoir of votes to add to the 21.3 per cent she received in the first round of voting, though she is expected to gain some voters from defeated centre-right candidate François Fillon. Perhaps in an effort to broaden her appeal to voters from outside the far-right National Front’s traditional constituencies, Le Pen announced on Twitter Monday that she was temporarily stepping down as the party’s leader so she could run as a candidate for “all the French.” Read more: Marine Le Pen, shown here voting in Sunday's, will step down from head of National Front Back Macron to prevent Le Pen 'risk', says Hollande French presidential candidate Le Pen steps down as head of National Front party “Tonight, I am not the president of the National Front, I am the presidential candidate, the one who wants to gather all the French around a project of hope, of prosperity, of security,” she said in an interview on French television. Most of Le Pen’s rivals have gathered around the effort to defeat her. Only one major candidate has resisted calls to unite against her: Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the firebrand hard-left candidate who came in fourth and who has pointedly refused to support Macron, saying instead that he would seek the opinion of his supporters through his website. Similarly, traditionalist Roman Catholic organizations that backed Fillon refused to endorse Macron on Monday. Some of Le Pen’s advisers said, in interviews with French media Monday, that they were hoping to lure some of the supporters of the defeated Mélenchon, whose populist program bore similarities to that of Le Pen: hostility to the European Union, NATO and the forces of globalization; and a forgiving attitude toward Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin. Many of Mélenchon’s supporters may have little fondness for Le Pen, but in interviews they expressed equal disdain for the pro-free market Macron. “For me, Le Pen, Macron, it’s the same,” said Olivia Scemama, a musician from the 18th Arrondissement of Paris who said she voted for Mélenchon on Sunday. “With Macron, it’s the extremism of banks, of finance.” The election results published Monday suggested another hurdle for Le Pen to overcome: a sharp urban-rural divide in the vote, with voters in France’s major cities heavily favouring her rivals. The geography and sociology of her support was similar to Donald Trump’s support in the 2016 U.S. presidential race. She won more départements — between a county and a state in French political geography — than Macron, and she won the working-class vote. But she did poorly in what French sociologists call “Winner’s France” — urban, employed, well-educated and pro-European. She received less than 5 per cent of the vote in Paris, less than 8 per cent in Bordeaux and less than 9 per cent in Lyon. Stock markets opened higher Monday across Europe, a sign that investors were relieved by Macron’s strong showing. Le Pen wants France to leave the euro currency zone, a prospect that created unease on international markets in the prelude to the first round of voting. Polls released Monday showed that about 60 per cent of voters supported Macron, compared with less than 40 per cent for Le Pen. A live televised debate between the candidates is set for May 3. In Hénin-Beaumont, the northern French city where Le Pen won 46 per cent of the vote and whose National Front mayor is one of her top advisers, even supporters were pessimistic about her chances in the runoff. “It’s a bummer,” said Jean-Louis Devienne, 72. “If people could come here and see how good the National Front has been for our town, they would understand how good it can be for our country.” On Monday, Le Pen continued to emphasize the anti-immigrant and antiglobalization views that propelled her into the second round, and she denounced the efforts of the mainstream parties to keep her out of the presidency. “The old and completely rotten Republican Front, which no one wants, and which the French have pushed away with exceptional violence, is trying to coalesce around Mr. Macron,” Le Pen said in Rouvroy, a town in the deindustrialized north of France where her message tends to resonate with voters. Le Pen also called Macron “weak” on terrorism, an issue that drew renewed attention days before the first round of voting, when a gunman on the Champs-Élysées, in central Paris, killed a police officer. President François Hollande is scheduled to pay tribute to the fallen officer at a ceremony Tuesday. His office said Macron and Le Pen are expected to attend. Macron, who has never held elective office, came first among 11 candidates, with 24 per cent of the vote. Le Pen was second, with 21.3 per cent, according to final results tallied Monday by the Interior Ministry. Fillon, the centre-right candidate who was once seen as the front-runner, before a scandal erupted involving public funds paid to his family, finished third at 20 per cent. He was followed by Mélenchon at 19.6 per cent and the Socialist candidate, Benoît Hamon, at 6.4 per cent. The mainstream parties were left struggling to pick up the pieces after their poor showing. On the right, many were quick to blame their candidate, Fillon, who refused to drop out of the race after the embezzlement scandal. Fillon’s Republicans party called on Monday for people to vote against Le Pen, without explicitly encouraging its supporters to vote for Macron. But many prominent politicians had, with varying degrees of enthusiasm, already directly called on Sunday for voters to support Macron. The Socialists and the Republicans will now be looking to elections in June, when French voters will elect the members of the National Assembly, France’s lower and more powerful house of Parliament. Those legislative elections could present a bigger challenge for Macron than winning the second round of the presidential election. He has vowed to field candidates in all 577 districts. But his political movement is barely a year old, and he is up against the established parties, which are weakened but still have extensive political networks. Although Macron is seen as an overwhelming favourite in the second round of the presidential election, he was warned not to take victory for granted and — after he spent Monday night with supporters at a chic restaurant in the wealthy 6th Arrondissement of Paris — not to celebrate too much, too soon. Macron has to avoid making “the same mistake as Hillary Clinton,” the newspaper Le Monde wrote in an editorial on Monday, arguing that Clinton had not sufficiently addressed the popularity of her opponent Bernie Sanders in the Democratic Party primaries.
>> Lire la suite

Trudeau and Trump are watching the vote in France, but for different reasons: Hébert (lun., 24 avril 2017)
MONTREAL—It is a sign of the times that a Canadian prime minister and an American president are cheering for different candidates in the upcoming second round of France’s presidential election — and that their contrary preferences are so transparent. Donald Trump has all but given Marine Le Pen a formal endorsement. In an interview with The Associated Press just ahead of Sunday’s first-round vote, he described the leader of France’s far right party as the “strongest on borders, and the strongest on what’s been going on in France.” Their history is one of reciprocal admiration. Trump likes the National Front’s anti-immigration bias, its anti-free-trade stance and its determination to have France follow the United Kingdom out of the European Union. So did about one in five French voters. On Sunday they helped Le Pen secure the second place with 21.3 per cent of the vote and a spot on the May 7 final round of voting. Le Pen has been one of the president’s most vocal European cheerleaders. She believed his victory, coming as it did on the heels of the U.K. vote to leave the European Union, would give her campaign a big boost. It did not really turn out that way. Sunday’s score was the best National Front showing in a presidential vote, but it fell short of the big breakthrough the far-right party had hoped for. If this vote offered a measure of sorts of Trump’s populist coattails, those have been shrinking over his first 100 days in office. Justin Trudeau has been discreet about the French presidential contest. But it goes without saying that the prime minister has no time for Le Pen. She has few fans among Canada’s mainstream politicians. It was considered a given that she would make it to the second round of voting. Until Sunday, it was not clear which of the other three main contenders in the French election battle would face off against the National Front leader in the make-or-break May vote. From Trudeau’s perspective, the first-round victory of centrist candidate Emmanuel Macron — with 24 per cent of the vote — and the probability that he will be the next French president is a win-win. Less than three percentage points separated Macron from his National Front rival in the first round. But that narrow margin is misleading. The anybody-but-Le Pen vote is projected to propel Macron to a decisive victory on May 7. If those projections pan out in two weeks, Trudeau will gain a like-minded ally in a strategic position on the international game board. Macron resigned from France’s socialist government to create his centrist En Marche movement less than a year ago. He campaigned on a pro-EU platform. On issues ranging from diversity to immigration, national security and the balance between the mitigation of climate change and the need for industrial development, he and Trudeau essentially sing from the same hymn book. There are other similarities. The presidential favourite is only 39 years old. Both he and Trudeau are rising stars of the new guard that is (belatedly) taking over from the baby-boomer generation. The contrast with Trump (and the rest of the recent American presidential slate) could not be more striking. Macron built his victory on the ruins of the two parties that have successively run France for three decades. He campaigned as an outsider. Neither of the candidates running for France’s main parties qualified for the second round. Benoît Hamon, who carried the banner of the incumbent Socialists, lost with barely 6 per cent of the vote. Trudeau, by comparison, leads the Canadian party that has spent the most time in power federally. He could be described as an insider by birth. But both he and Macron similarly beat long odds to vault to the front of the pack, and each campaigned on a variation of sunny ways. Macron was the only presidential candidate to openly support CETA, the Canada-EU free trade agreement negotiated under Stephen Harper and subsequently nurtured by the Trudeau government. It still has to clear some hurdles before it is cast in stone. With Macron in the Elysée, the odds of that happening would be better. A note in closing: Quebec’s Parti Québécois spent decades nurturing the goodwill of France’s traditional parties for the province’s independence project. Based on Sunday’s vote, that section of its sovereignty infrastructure has also not aged well. Chantal Hébert is a national affairs writer. Her column appears Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
>> Lire la suite