News Stories of Interest, Tuesday, Sept. 8, 2015

No independence days today, but it’s Farmers’ Day in Tanzania, Father’s Day in Taiwan and Flag Day in Sweden. I really didn’t make that up. On this day in 1610, Samuel de Champlain left Canada to return to France, leaving behind a party of 16 brave Frenchmen.

Thousands gather in Edmonton for annual Labour Day BBQ

While the annual Edmonton and District Labour Council BBQ attracted thousands for free food and entertainment in a celebration of Alberta’s workers and the work of unions that support them, conversations quickly turned to the stagnating Canadian economy. The annual barbecue brings thousands of people to Giovanni Caboto Park to celebrate the contributions made by labour unions while bringing awareness to ongoing issues faced by the underemployed and unemployed. Note: I was there and I’d say about 1,000 attended.

Rainbows brighten Calgary core

Thousands of people braved cold and rain to take part in the 25th annual Calgary Pride Parade on the weekend, including at least one UNA member with a #Vote4Care sign.

Alberta still failing to ensure safe work for teens: Parkland

As students return to school across Alberta today, thousands of teens will again be juggling their time between education and employment. But a new report released today by Parkland Institute warns that many Alberta teens are working in prohibited occupations or face unsafe workplaces, and that the provincial government has failed to effectively enforce the employment regulations in place to protect them.

Alberta Justice sued for defamation in dispute with former Chief Medical Examiner

The province’s former chief medical examiner has filed a second lawsuit against Alberta Justice because of a ministry news statement she says contains false and defamatory statements. In the new lawsuit filed Friday, Dr. Anny Sauvageau also sued former justice minister Jonathan Denis, alleging comments he made during a radio interview defamed her. In February, Sauvageau sued Alberta Justice and Denis for wrongful dismissal.

Secret status of women report paints grim picture of Canada

Canada is falling behind the developed world in women’s equality, as poverty rates climb for elderly single women and for single-parent families headed by women, says an internal report by Status of Women Canada. A copy of the 35-page presentation – with five pages of "policy implications" blacked out entirely as "advice" – was obtained by CBC News under the Access to Information Act.

Federal public servants set to battle Harper

Efforts by federal public employees to do something about Prime Minister Stephen Harper have opened a national debate about the political rights of public servants and what’s happening to the very nature of Canada’s neutral, anonymous and non-partisan public service, the National Post says. “They raise questions about whether Canadians will see an all-out war between the public service and the Conservatives as the election campaign heats up.”

Canadian experts call for study of medical uses of psychedelics

A group of medical researchers is calling for further study into how those with mental illnesses and addictions could benefit from psychedelic drugs such as acid and MDMA, which they say could one day be combined with psychotherapy and counselling to replace daily doses of widely abused pharmaceuticals.

FASD Awareness Day planned

A free pancake breakfast in Muskoseepi Park will kick off the festivities for FASD Awareness Day on Wednesday. Hosted by the North West Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and the FASD Awareness Committee, the event is meant to raise awareness of the dangers of drinking during pregnancy and the struggles of families and individuals with FASD.

AHS to help with Jasper Avenue stink

A neighbourhood’s health concerns about long-term exposure to sewer gas and hydrogen sulphide has drawn Alberta Health Services into the fray. The agency will participate in an open house in West Jasper Place Sept. 15 to hear and help answer residents’ concerns. But whether that escalates to a full investigation is yet to be determined, said an AHS person.

AUPE president: positive changes coming to labour law

Positive changes to Alberta’s labour laws are coming soon, Alberta Union of Provincial Employees President Guy Smith predicts.

There will be no news summary tomorrow, as I have to be at an all-day meeting.

David Climenhaga
Communications Advisor
United Nurses of Alberta
780-425-1025 (Office)
780-717-2943 (Cellular)