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How does each party plan to address the crisis in elder care?

THE BIG STORY | posted Wednesday, Sep 8th, 2021

In today’s Big Story podcast, it’s no secret that our elders were the people hit hardest by COVID-19, but all the pandemic did was shine a deadly light on a system that has been broken for years. Canada’s population is aging. Our long-term care facilities are passable at best, and we don’t have enough of them. And we’re staring down a critical labour shortage among caregivers. So does any party have a plan for this? And are any of them realistic?

GUEST: André Picard, Health Reporter, The Globe and Mail

You can subscribe to The Big Story podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google and Spotify

You can also find it at thebigstorypodcast.ca.

How your donated clothes end up burning in landfills a world away

THE BIG STORY | posted Tuesday, Sep 7th, 2021

In today’s Big Story podcast, you thought you were helping someone when you put that bag of old clothes in a donation bin. But you probably didn’t. A striking number of clothes donated in Canada and other wealthy countries end up clogging landfills in African nations. While a good suit or jacket might make a real difference to someone who needs one, the vast majority of donated clothes are cheap, fast fashion — and often totally unwearable. And the rise of disposable clothes has swamped the system, turning a process once intended to help into one fraught with inequality and pollution.

GUEST: Linton Besser, Australian Broadcast Corporation

You can subscribe to The Big Story podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google and Spotify

You can also find it at thebigstorypodcast.ca.

Party leaders in Central Canada as election campaign enters fourth week

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Tuesday, Sep 7th, 2021

OTTAWA — The main federal party leaders are in Central Canada as the election campaign enters its fourth week.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau starts the day on home turf, making an announcement in Montreal.

Later in the day, he’s due to travel to Ottawa, where he’ll participate in a virtual town hall with volunteers.

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole is spending a second day at his Ottawa home base, a ballroom in the Westin Hotel.

He’s scheduled to make an announcement in the morning, and hold a virtual telephone town hall with Ontario residents in the evening.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh, meanwhile, is campaigning in Toronto, where he’s set to make an announcement on climate action this morning.

Trudeau, O’Toole in central Canada while Singh to campaign in Winnipeg

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Thursday, Aug 26th, 2021

The Liberal and Conservative leaders are to be in central Canada for Day 12 of the federal election campaign, while the head of the NDP is expected to spend most the day in Winnipeg.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau will be in Quebec City in the morning for an announcement about supporting seniors.

Erin O’Toole, head of the Conservatives, has an announcement scheduled in Ottawa and will stay in the city to then host a virtual town hall with Nova Scotians.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh is expected to make two announcements in Winnipeg — one about housing and the other with heads of Manitoba First Nations.

Singh will then cross the boundary into Ontario for a meet and greet at the Kenora airport.

On Wednesday, the main political parties made varying promises to help make everything from housing to food to mobile phone bills less costly.

‘We wish we could have saved everyone’: Canadian mission in Kabul has ended

CLAIREFENTON | posted Thursday, Aug 26th, 2021

OTTAWA — The vast majority of remaining Canadian personnel have been evacuated from the Taliban-controlled city of Kabul.

Canada’s acting Chief of the Defence Staff says the Armed Forces wishes it could have saved everyone as evacuation efforts in Afghanistan have ceased just days before the U.S. was set to leave the country.

“We stayed in Afghanistan as long as we could,” said Lieutenant-General Wayne Eyre.

The final flight left the airport around 9 p.m. PT with hundreds on board, although the military did not provide details on who was on that flight, or how many people.

“We wish we could have saved everyone,” Eyre said Thursday morning on the end to personal recovery operations.

“The conditions our Armed Forces were working under are unlike anything we’ve seen in decades,” said Eyre.

More than 3,700 Canadians, permanent residents, and Afghans were safely rescued in recent weeks.

Eyre says Canadian forces could not stay any longer, or do more than they were able to, as the speed in which the terrorist organization gained power took all allies by surprise.

He says the Taliban has tightened its noose in the country, and had closed the perimeter around the airport. New warnings emerged overnight of a potential attack on the airport, with an explosion hitting just outside the airport Thursday night. He says the Canadian military was under constant threat, and had received word of numerous attacks being planned against its members.

A small liaison team will be on the ground to help with coordination with allies for the next day or two, while conditions permit.

Calling the mission, “one of the largest, most complex, and dangerous in modern history,” Eyre added, “operations like this take a toll on our people.”

He says he is concerned about the wellness of troops involved who had to witness the despair of thousands of people in the country, as well as the hundreds who tried to flee and failed.

“The feeling of guilt in having to leave people behind is overwhelming,” he said.

Describing the images as heart wrenching, he says they could only direct people left behind to information resources.

“We are human, and these horrifying stories will stay with us, in most cases, for life.”

In the coming weeks and months, Canada will put a focus on its humanitarian work and Immigration Canada has confirmed that visa applications are still being processed. Canada has pledged to help 20,000 Afghans settle in the country, many of them have not arrived yet, and are currently based in several cities as they await transportation assistance from Canada and the U.S.

Global Affairs Canada says officials are devastated that many Canadians and Afghans were left behind.

“We recognize that today’s announcement will be distressing news for those who are still in Afghanistan and wish to leave,” Global Affairs Canada Cindy Termorschulze said.

“For our fellow citizens in Afghanistan, if you need to move to a safer location please do so with great caution. Use your judgement to decide the best time and the safest means to do so. Assess the risk carefully as you take the necessary steps to ensure your security and that of your family.”

With files from The Canadian Press

Salad kit recalled due to Listeria concerns sold in Ontario, possibly other provinces and territories

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Wednesday, Aug 25th, 2021

Curation Foods is recalling its Eat Smart brand Asian Sesame Chopped Salad Kit over a possible Listeria contamination.

The recall covers 340g packages with a best before date of Aug. 24.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says the salad kits were sold in Ontario, and possibly nationally.

There have been no reports of any illnesses linked to the product.

Food contaminated with Listeria may not look or smell spoiled but can still make you sick.

Symptoms can include nausea, fever, muscle aches, severe headache and neck stiffness, and in some cases even death.

Does Jagmeet Singh deserve a second chance?

THE BIG STORY | posted Wednesday, Aug 25th, 2021

In today’s Big Story podcast, after a poor showing in the 2019 election campaign—his first as NDP leader—there were questions about if Jagmeet Singh would keep his job long enough to get a second try. He has, and so far the results have been very different. What has to break right for the NDP to take aim at an upset victory? What assets do they have both in platform and personality? How should they be planning the next few weeks if they want to try to replicate the Liberals’ underdog win of 2015?

This is the first in a series of episodes examining how the major party leaders could each become Prime Minister.

GUEST: Jen Gerson, The Line; Maclean’s

You can subscribe to The Big Story podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google and Spotify

You can also find it at thebigstorypodcast.ca.

How did legal pot become such a tough business?

THE BIG STORY | posted Tuesday, Aug 24th, 2021

In today’s Big Story podcast, three years ago, cannabis stocks were the hottest things on the market. Weed was about to become legal in Canada and it seemed everyone was going to get rich in the process. Today, millions of grams sit untouched, going stale on shelves. Some of the industry’s biggest names have gone through round after round of layoffs. And even now, almost half of the pot sold in Canada is on the black market. How did Canada’s legal pot industry blow its opportunity?

GUEST: Kieran Delamont, writing in The Walrus

You can subscribe to The Big Story podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google and Spotify

You can also find it at thebigstorypodcast.ca.

All 3 main party leaders will campaign in Ontario on Tuesday

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Tuesday, Aug 24th, 2021

Day nine of the federal election campaign sees all three main party leaders in Ontario.

After spending the past several days in Atlantic Canada, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau starts his day with an announcement in Hamilton.

Trudeau was on the defense Monday after a tweet from his deputy prime minister was labelled “manipulated media” in its attempt to portray Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole as a supporter of private health care.

Twitter flagged the tweet from Chrystia Freeland, who is seeking re-election in Toronto, after she posted spliced-together clips of O’Toole answering a question about private, for-profit options in universal health coverage.

Meantime, O’Toole is staying in Ottawa, where he will also make a morning announcement before holding virtual telephone townhalls with Quebec and British Columbia.

NDP leader Jagmeet Singh will kick off his Tuesday with an announcement on long-term care in Mississauga. He’ll then make a whistle stop with Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath and NDP Hamilton-area candidates in Amherstburg before meeting with supporters at the campaign office of another local candidate in the area.

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