Quebec City – Celenire http://celenire.com/ Sat, 22 Jan 2022 02:06:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 https://celenire.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/icon-1-150x150.png Quebec City – Celenire http://celenire.com/ 32 32 Icebreaker talks between Ottawa and Quebec shipyard shrouded in fog https://celenire.com/icebreaker-talks-between-ottawa-and-quebec-shipyard-shrouded-in-fog/ Fri, 21 Jan 2022 22:37:42 +0000 https://celenire.com/icebreaker-talks-between-ottawa-and-quebec-shipyard-shrouded-in-fog/ Questions are swirling about another delay in Ottawa’s nearly $100 billion plan to rebuild Canada’s navy and coast guard fleets – but this time the delay isn’t due to the deadlock building a ship. The federal government announced in December 2019 that the Quebec shipyard Chantier Davie was the only company to qualify for part […]]]>

Questions are swirling about another delay in Ottawa’s nearly $100 billion plan to rebuild Canada’s navy and coast guard fleets – but this time the delay isn’t due to the deadlock building a ship.

The federal government announced in December 2019 that the Quebec shipyard Chantier Davie was the only company to qualify for part of this work, namely the construction of six much-needed icebreakers for the Canadian Coast Guard.

Yet while that announcement kick-started negotiations for a deal that Davie and his supporters in Quebec City and Ottawa had long been calling for, the talks that followed remain in the dark more than two years later.

The delay is fueling fears about the Canadian Coast Guard’s aging fleet, which lost another vessel this week. The forced retirement of a 59-year-old science vessel leaves Canada without a dedicated platform for ocean research.

“You really wonder what’s happening so long after making such a high-profile commitment,” said David Perry, president of the Canadian Global Affairs Institute and one of Canada’s top procurement experts.

“And the delivery of all the work for which they are responsible must be significantly affected by the failure to reach an agreement.”

First excluded, then favored

Davie was initially left out of the shipbuilding plan following a 2011 competition that selected Irving Shipbuilding in Halifax to build the navy’s new warships, and Seaspan to build two new naval support ships and the essential part of the new coast guard fleet.

The Quebec shipyard was able to land some piecework, including the construction of two federal ferries and the supply of several second-hand ships for the navy and the coast guard. These included a naval supply ship and three used icebreakers.

Davie Shipyard in Lévis, Quebec, was the only company deemed qualified to build six much-needed icebreakers for the Canadian Coast Guard. (Marc Godbout/Radio Canada)

Davie made no secret of its desire to do more and, with the help of allies in Quebec and opposition benches in Ottawa, the Lévis, Quebec-based company lobbied the government federal Liberal to be officially included in the shipbuilding plan.

At the same time, Seaspan was struggling to meet its delivery schedules due to mismanagement by the Vancouver shipyard and the federal government. Meanwhile, the Coast Guard fleet was becoming increasingly decrepit.

The impact of those delays crystallized further this week when the Coast Guard announced it was retiring the CCGS Hudson, an ocean research vessel, while revealing that Seaspan would not deliver its replacement until at least 2025.

It is in this context that the Liberal government announced in August 2019 that it was adding a third shipyard to the shipbuilding plan to build Canada’s next fleet of icebreakers, and formally called on shipyards to show their interest.

Ontario shipyard Heddle Marine was quick to accuse the government of stacking the deck in favor of Davie. Yet the Canadian International Trade Tribunal was barred from investigating Heddle’s complaint after Ottawa invoked a special exemption.

In December 2019, the government announced that Davie was the only shipyard to meet its requirements.

While officials at the time said they expected a final deal to work out the details by the end of 2020, that hasn’t happened. The last official update in July said the government had revised that timeline to the end of 2021, a deadline it also missed.

A crane lifts materials above the Seaspan shipyard in Vancouver. The shipbuilder struggled to meet its delivery deadlines. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press)

‘Complex procedure’

Both sides say talks are ongoing, but provided few other details.

“This is a complex, multi-step qualification process and it is imperative that Canada succeeds,” said Public Services and Procurement Canada spokesperson Marc-André Charbonneau. “Our evaluation team continues to evaluate the proposal submitted by Chantier Davie.

He added that if Davie “is unable to complete the process to become the third shipyard under the (national shipbuilding strategy), Canada should assess the impact on all programs intended at the third shipyard”.

A spokesperson for Davie said the company remains committed to building Canada’s newest icebreakers, the need for delivery of which becomes more urgent with each passing day as the existing Coast Guard fleet grows older and older. difficult to maintain.

The company, meanwhile, has yet to deliver the last of three used icebreakers ordered for the Coast Guard in 2018, which were billed at $610 million but are now nearing the $1 billion mark. of dollars.

The lack of a formal deal didn’t stop the Liberals from announcing plans in May for Davie and Seaspan to each build a polar icebreaker, an announcement some saw as politically motivated ahead of the US federal election. last year.

University of Calgary shipbuilding expert Timothy Choi said that while the COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly slowed plans to add Davie, the lack of clarity surrounding the talks is both frustrating and worrying.

“The exact stage of their negotiations, and in fact what needs to be negotiated or verified for Davie to become the third official yard, has been shrouded in silence,” he said.

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A man in his twenties in critical condition after hitting a snowplow in Abitibi-Témiscamingue https://celenire.com/a-man-in-his-twenties-in-critical-condition-after-hitting-a-snowplow-in-abitibi-temiscamingue/ Thu, 20 Jan 2022 03:20:00 +0000 https://celenire.com/a-man-in-his-twenties-in-critical-condition-after-hitting-a-snowplow-in-abitibi-temiscamingue/ A man in his twenties is fighting for his life in hospital after his vehicle hit a snowplow on a public road in Abitibi-Témiscamingue. Emergency services were notified Wednesday, around 3:30 p.m., of the collision that had just occurred on 10e-et-1er-Rang Ouest in La Reine, a small municipality of 340 inhabitants located near La Sarre. […]]]>

A man in his twenties is fighting for his life in hospital after his vehicle hit a snowplow on a public road in Abitibi-Témiscamingue.

Emergency services were notified Wednesday, around 3:30 p.m., of the collision that had just occurred on 10e-et-1er-Rang Ouest in La Reine, a small municipality of 340 inhabitants located near La Sarre.

According to preliminary information, the westbound car collided with the westbound snow plow. “The driver of the car, who was alone in his vehicle, was seriously injured,” said the sergeant spokesperson for the Sûreté du Québec (SQ). Helene St-Pierre.

The man was in critical condition when he was taken to hospital.

A section of the road was closed to traffic to allow an SQ collision investigator to analyze the scene.

According to the preliminary investigation, the weather conditions at the time of the collision could have played a role. “We’re talking blowing snow,” said Sgt. Saint Pierre.

The roadway was also snow-covered or icy in several places in the region, according to the Ministry of Transport. Snow made travel difficult in many parts of the province on Wednesday.

In the Quebec City region alone, the Quebec City Police Service (SPVQ) reported about thirty collisions at the start of the evening, most of which involved property damage and all of which were not serious for the people involved.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published in French on January 19, 2022.

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A look at the latest COVID-19 developments in Canada https://celenire.com/a-look-at-the-latest-covid-19-developments-in-canada/ Tue, 18 Jan 2022 03:25:04 +0000 https://celenire.com/a-look-at-the-latest-covid-19-developments-in-canada/ – A major union representing public sector workers says it is open to temporarily transferring members to help with the overburdened healthcare system, but says it was not given enough advance notice and is being burdened -even facing labor shortages. The Quebec government is looking for public sector workers to temporarily fill more than 2,000 […]]]>

– A major union representing public sector workers says it is open to temporarily transferring members to help with the overburdened healthcare system, but says it was not given enough advance notice and is being burdened -even facing labor shortages. The Quebec government is looking for public sector workers to temporarily fill more than 2,000 health care aide positions, the health ministry announced Monday. But the government did not make its request until Friday, said Christian Daigle, president of the Quebec Public and Parapublic Service Union, adding that workers had until Monday evening to express their interest.

– Alberta’s health minister has tested positive for COVID-19 and provincial hospitalizations exceed 1,000 patients for the first time since September as the Omicron variant spreads rapidly. Minister Jason Copping said on social media that he tested positive in a rapid test after showing mild symptoms last week and was self-isolating at home. Provincial figures show 94 patients receiving intensive care – a jump of 13 from before the weekend. The death toll rose by 23 people, including a child between the ages of five and nine – one of the youngest deaths from COVID-19 ever recorded in the province.

— Canada’s largest airlines and its busiest airport are calling on the federal government to drop its rule requiring vaccinated travelers to test themselves on arrival for COVID-19. In a letter to Ottawa and the Ontario government, Air Canada, WestJet and Toronto Pearson Airport called for a transfer of testing capacity from airports to the community. “While the government has stepped up testing at airports for international arrivals, we have seen frontline workers struggle to get PCR tests and lab processing capacity is drastically declining,” the letter said, citing the schools, hospitals and long-term care homes as particular priorities. . “There is a growing gap between resources allocated to asymptomatic travelers and those most in need.”

– Some Manitoba students walked out of class on Monday, the first day after a long vacation, to protest what they said was an unsafe environment as COVID-19 numbers continue to rise. “A lot of them want to go to school. They want to be in school, but they want to feel safe,” Piper Lockhart, 16, said of her peers. “Teachers aren’t getting the resources to have safe classrooms.” Lockhart was one of the organizers of the protest which was planned at dozens of schools across the province. She was one of half a dozen students who left Louis Riel College while most remained in class.

– BC’s top doctor has extended a COVID-19 order that will keep gyms and fitness centers closed before providing more details tomorrow. That’s when the restrictions were due to expire, but Dr Bonnie Henry said last week they believed COVID-19 hospitalizations were set to increase after cases in the community peaked . Restrictions on gatherings and events will remain in place, and Henry has also ordered school boards to collect information on the vaccination status of their staff. The British Columbia Teachers’ Federation says on Twitter that it was not consulted or informed in advance of the order.

— Nova Scotia has become the first province in Atlantic Canada to reopen its schools to in-person learning. Students at about 400 public schools across the province had been learning remotely since Jan. 10 due to the threat to public safety posed by the Omicron variant. Nova Scotia Teachers Union President Paul Wozney said the government has not done enough to ensure students and staff are protected from COVID-19, especially since officials will not carry out contact tracing in schools.

– New Brunswick health officials say two more people have died of COVID-19. Officials say the latest deaths involve an 80-year-old in the Campbellton area and a 90-year-old in the Bathurst area. There have been 189 deaths related to COVID-19 in New Brunswick since the start of the pandemic.

– Prince Edward Island health officials are reporting 231 new cases of COVID-19, including new infections at two long-term care facilities. Chief Public Health Officer Dr Heather Morrison said there had been an average of 215 new cases a day over the past week. There are 1,934 active cases reported on the island.

– Officials in Newfoundland and Labrador are waiting at least another week to ease public health restrictions following an increase in COVID-19 cases that began in late December. Health Minister John Haggie said the province will remain at Alert Level 4, which requires all households to limit contact to 10 people, among other rules. The province moved to Alert Level 4 on January 4 and will remain there until at least January 24, when officials will review the restrictions again.

This report from The Canadian Press was first published on January 17, 2022.

The Canadian Press

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A winter storm batters southern Quebec on Monday as students return to school https://celenire.com/a-winter-storm-batters-southern-quebec-on-monday-as-students-return-to-school/ Sun, 16 Jan 2022 15:55:18 +0000 https://celenire.com/a-winter-storm-batters-southern-quebec-on-monday-as-students-return-to-school/ Students returning to class on Monday could experience 15 centimeters of snow or more, with Environment and Climate Change Canada issuing a winter storm warning for most of southern Quebec. Snowfall is expected to start early in the morning and last all day until evening. This will be the result of a low pressure system […]]]>

Students returning to class on Monday could experience 15 centimeters of snow or more, with Environment and Climate Change Canada issuing a winter storm warning for most of southern Quebec.

Snowfall is expected to start early in the morning and last all day until evening. This will be the result of a low pressure system traveling north from the US east coast.

In total, up to 25 centimeters of snow could fall in the Montreal, St. Lawrence Valley and Outaouais regions, and up to 35 centimeters in the Laurentians, Lanaudière, Mauricie, from Quebec and Charlevoix.

Wind gusts of up to 70 kilometers per hour are also expected to accompany snow in these areas.

Parts of Ontario could receive up to 50 centimeters.

The cold gives way to snow

“Surfaces such as highways, roads, sidewalks and parking lots may become difficult to navigate due to snow accumulation,” the Quebec warning said.

“Visibility will suddenly drop to near zero at times in heavy snow and blowing snow.”

The storm forecast comes after much of Quebec experienced extremely cold temperatures for the past few days.

Saturday morning temperatures plummeted to -24°C in Montreal, and felt like blistering -37°C with the wind chill factor.

But a mild high of -3 C is expected for Monday.

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Canadian Mikaël Kingsbury takes silver in moguls for his 8th World Cup medal of the season https://celenire.com/canadian-mikael-kingsbury-takes-silver-in-moguls-for-his-8th-world-cup-medal-of-the-season/ Sat, 15 Jan 2022 01:35:00 +0000 https://celenire.com/canadian-mikael-kingsbury-takes-silver-in-moguls-for-his-8th-world-cup-medal-of-the-season/ Canada’s Mikaël Kingsbury collected another World Cup medal, winning silver in men’s moguls in Deer Valley, Utah, on Friday. Kingsbury finished with 82.84 points, just behind Japan’s Ikuma Horishima, who scored 84.04. Sweden’s Walter Wallberg came in third with 79.62 points. Laurent Dumais, of Quebec, was 8th, followed by Brendan Kelly, of Pemberton, BC, in […]]]>

Canada’s Mikaël Kingsbury collected another World Cup medal, winning silver in men’s moguls in Deer Valley, Utah, on Friday.

Kingsbury finished with 82.84 points, just behind Japan’s Ikuma Horishima, who scored 84.04. Sweden’s Walter Wallberg came in third with 79.62 points.

Laurent Dumais, of Quebec, was 8th, followed by Brendan Kelly, of Pemberton, BC, in 9th and Gabriel Dufresne, of Joliette, Que., in 10th.

It was Kingsbury’s second medal in two days, after making its 100th World Cup podium on Thursday with a gold medal.

WATCH | Kingsbury win moguls silver at Deer Valley World Cup:

101 medal in moguls for Kingsbury of Canada

Canadian Mikaël Kingsbury notched his 101st career World Cup freestyle moguls medal on Friday with a silver medal in Deer Valley, Utah. 2:06

The 29-year-old from Deux-Montagnes, Que., has eight World Cup medals this season, including six gold.

He is the reigning Olympic champion in men’s moguls and will be one of the favorites when he travels to his third Winter Games in Beijing next month.

WATCH | Kingsbury win moguls gold at World Cup:

Mikael Kingsbury wins moguls gold for 100th career World Cup podium

The Canadian king of moguls adds another win to his illustrious resume with another world-class World Cup performance. 3:36

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Should Vancouver help fight Quebec’s Bill 21? https://celenire.com/should-vancouver-help-fight-quebecs-bill-21/ Thu, 13 Jan 2022 03:08:05 +0000 https://celenire.com/should-vancouver-help-fight-quebecs-bill-21/ Should the City of Vancouver help fund a legal challenge against Quebec’s controversial Bill 21, which became law in 2019 and prohibits public officials from wearing religious symbols, including turbans, hijabs, yarmulkes and skullcaps? crucifix? That’s a question Mayor Kennedy Stewart wasn’t ready to answer on Tuesday, but advised him. Jean Swanson said she was […]]]>

Should the City of Vancouver help fund a legal challenge against Quebec’s controversial Bill 21, which became law in 2019 and prohibits public officials from wearing religious symbols, including turbans, hijabs, yarmulkes and skullcaps? crucifix?

That’s a question Mayor Kennedy Stewart wasn’t ready to answer on Tuesday, but advised him. Jean Swanson said she was considering drafting a motion that would ask for city funds to be directed to the legal cause.

The National Council of Canadian Muslims, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and the World Sikh Organization of Canada are leading the challenge against Bill 21, with the case currently before the Quebec Court of Appeal.

Swanson said she first wants to hear what the city’s Racial and Ethnocultural Equity Advisory Committee decides on the funding issue Thursday. The councilor acknowledged that it would be an unprecedented decision if she applied for financial support and got board approval.

“There are a lot of instances where we get together and vote on something – supporting Indian farmers, for example – but I don’t know about the money,” she said when asked if she was. there had been a previous case related to a legal battle in another province. where Vancouver Council has committed municipal funds.

“Discrimination against freedom of religion”

In 2019, the council unanimously accepted a joint motion from councilors Lisa Dominato and Sarah Kirby-Yung “to support diversity, equity and access for all citizens and support legal challenges against discrimination in principle. freedom of religion” as stated in Quebec’s Law 21.

Several cities across the country, including Brampton, Toronto and recently Victoria, have all voted to contribute financially to the legal challenge. Brampton and Toronto will each provide $100,000, while Victoria has pledged $9,500.

Stewart publicly condemned Bill 21, but cautioned that court decisions involving the city are made in closed meetings. He acknowledged that it was a subject within the council and that a decision will probably be made one way or the other in the week of January 25, when the council will hold its first meeting of the year.

“That’s about all I can say because of the nature behind closed doors,” the mayor said Tuesday. “I’m just probing what other cities are doing. Some have denounced the bill and are not putting funding into it, while others are.”

‘Charity starts at home’

Kirby-Yung, meanwhile, said she objects to the city contributing money to the legal challenge. While she supports the fight — as outlined in her joint motion with Dominato — Kirby-Yung noted that the majority of the board recently approved a 6.35% property tax increase and could not fund all programs. related to racial equity.

Anti-Asian hate crimes have also been on the rise since 2020.

“I would say we still have a lot of work to do here,” she said, pointing to projects in Chinatown and working around a possible land trust tied to the Hogan’s Alley Society.

“Also, we’re underfunded for a lot of the social issues that we have here in the city of Vancouver, whether it’s homelessness or addictions. I would kind of follow the script of the charity starting home and I would add our voice to the conversation, but I don’t think we should be putting what is essentially taxpayers’ money into the legal fight.”

Fatema Abdalla, spokesperson for the National Council of Canadian Muslims, said she was encouraged by the principled support and financial support from various municipal councils in Canada.

“Legal challenges like this are quite costly and marginalized communities across [Quebec] are fighting against a province with unlimited resources,” Abdalla said.

“In order to level the playing field, much more [money] is necessary. Seeing these city councils across the country step in and fight the legal challenge to Bill 21 shows what an important battle this is. »

mhowell@glaciermedia.ca

twitter.com/Howellings

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Horacio Arruda resigns from his post of director of public health for Quebec | City News https://celenire.com/horacio-arruda-resigns-from-his-post-of-director-of-public-health-for-quebec-city-news/ Tue, 11 Jan 2022 01:30:00 +0000 https://celenire.com/horacio-arruda-resigns-from-his-post-of-director-of-public-health-for-quebec-city-news/ Quebec’s director of public health, Horacio Arruda, sent a letter of resignation to Prime Minister François Legault on Monday evening, after 12 years in this post, and it was accepted. Arruda’s replacement is Luc Boileau, President and CEO of the National Institute of Excellence in Health and Social Services (INESSS). Arruda resigned amid criticism of […]]]>

Quebec’s director of public health, Horacio Arruda, sent a letter of resignation to Prime Minister François Legault on Monday evening, after 12 years in this post, and it was accepted.

Arruda’s replacement is Luc Boileau, President and CEO of the National Institute of Excellence in Health and Social Services (INESSS).

Arruda resigned amid criticism of how the province handled the latest wave of COVID, involving the highly transmissible Omicron virus. Lately, during press conferences, Legault and the Minister of Health Christian Dubé were questioned several times to know if the government still trusted Arruda.

Arruda’s letter said he wanted to step down because criticism of the pandemic’s handling was damaging the government’s credibility.

“Recent comments on the credibility of our opinions and our scientific rigor are undoubtedly causing some erosion of support,” he wrote. “In such a context, I consider it appropriate to offer you the possibility of replacing me before the end of my mandate.

“Do not see in this gesture an abandonment on my part, but rather the offer of an opportunity for you to reassess the situation, after several waves and in a constantly changing context.”

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Taco Bell closes all its branches in Quebec | City News https://celenire.com/taco-bell-closes-all-its-branches-in-quebec-city-news/ Sat, 08 Jan 2022 15:45:00 +0000 https://celenire.com/taco-bell-closes-all-its-branches-in-quebec-city-news/ CJAD talk show host Elias Makos said last Friday that there were no Taco Bells in Quebec. I, and apparently several other CJAD listeners, took action and texted CJAD. I’ve known for years that there was at least one Taco Bell in Quebec – on the Côte Vertu in Saint-Laurent. I ate there only once. […]]]>

CJAD talk show host Elias Makos said last Friday that there were no Taco Bells in Quebec.

I, and apparently several other CJAD listeners, took action and texted CJAD. I’ve known for years that there was at least one Taco Bell in Quebec – on the Côte Vertu in Saint-Laurent. I ate there only once. (It was enough for me.)

As the show unfolded, other listeners spoke up, including one who said that although the Taco Bell brand was still in place in Saint-Laurent, no Taco Bell product was served. Google says in fact that the site, shared with Kentucky Fried Chicken, is “permanently closed”.

I won’t miss it.

Finally, listener Marissa Ramnanan directly tweeted Taco Bell Canada, seeking a definitive answer.

“Our listeners of the @eliasmakos show on # CJAD800 should know that!” says the message.

Taco Bell Canada tweeted a response, “Our branches in Quebec are closing. We love all of our Quebec fans and hope to see you again soon.”

As has been pointed out on CJAD, the nearest Taco Bell locations are now not far across the Ontario border in Hawkesbury and Cornwall. The chain opened in the west of the island in 2007.

Reports also indicate that the channel has experienced difficulties in Quebec, including French names and a French portion of the website. Perhaps for the same reason that there are no Bed, Bath and Beyond stores in Quebec.

Taco Bell’s French slogan was “Save a hamburger bun. Eat a Taco.”


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Quebec women take to the world stage in 2022 https://celenire.com/quebec-women-take-to-the-world-stage-in-2022/ Fri, 07 Jan 2022 21:13:48 +0000 https://celenire.com/quebec-women-take-to-the-world-stage-in-2022/ Breadcrumb Links Tennis Sports Olympic Games Hockey From hockey and speed skating to freestyle skiing and tennis, Quebecers are set to make a splash for Canada in the coming year. Author of the article: Pat hickey • Montreal Gazette Release date : Jan 07, 2022 • 51 minutes ago • 4 minutes to read • […]]]>

From hockey and speed skating to freestyle skiing and tennis, Quebecers are set to make a splash for Canada in the coming year.

Content of the article

As the National Hockey League lets the Beijing Winter Olympics go by, the Canada-U.S. Rivalry in women’s hockey is poised to garner attention.

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Canada and the United States have dominated the competition since women’s hockey made its debut at the 1998 Nagano Games in Japan. Canada won four of six gold medals and finished second behind the United States on the other two occasions, including at the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Before it was interrupted by the pandemic, the Rivalry series, a barnstorming tour of North America, had produced standing-only crowds as well as strong television ratings. When Marie-Philip Poulin of Beauceville scored in overtime on December 18 to give Canada a 4-2 lead in the series, there were more fans watching women on TSN than the two NHL games on TSN and Sportsnet.

The challenge of women’s hockey is to capitalize on the interest generated by the Olympic Games to offer the best players in the world the opportunity to make a living from hockey.

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“Our goal is to create a league that will allow women to play hockey without having to have a full-time job outside of hockey,” said Jayna Hefford, quadruple Olympic gold medalist and women’s hockey operations consultant. professional. Players’ Association (PWHPA). “We’re not talking about million dollar contracts, but we need a sustainable league that offers reasonable wages, benefits and insurance.”

The best players on both sides of the Canada-US border have come together in an effort to make this dream come true. The PWHPA has partnered with Secret deodorant, Sonnet Insurance and other sponsors to create the Dream Gap Tour which recently completed its 2021 program.

Hefford said the PWPHA is working on dates for the Dream Gap Tour 2022 to take advantage of the interest in the Olympics, but the ultimate goal is to have your own league and that might require NHL support, who deals with their own issues in the era of COVID-19.

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Team Canada captain Marie-Philip Poulin skates between Team USA Jincy Dunne and Hannah Brandt during their exhibition game in Maryland Heights, Missouri on December 17, 2021.
Team Canada captain Marie-Philip Poulin skates between Team USA Jincy Dunne and Hannah Brandt during their exhibition game in Maryland Heights, Missouri on December 17, 2021. Photo of JONATHAN ERNST /REUTERS

The women’s hockey tournament won’t be the only spectacle in town during the Olympics. Several Quebec women are ready to win medals in Beijing.

Kim Boutin, a native of Sherbrooke who trains at the national short track speed skating training center at the Maurice Richard arena, is the favorite in the 500 meters and will lead the relay team. Boutin won a silver and two bronze medals at the 2018 Olympics. She was unbeaten last year in the 500-meter and is the only woman to go under 42 seconds in that event. Canada will seek revenge in the relay, an often chaotic affair that can resemble roller derby. In 2018, Canada failed to win a medal in this event for the first time after being pushed around by hosts South Korea.

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Brittany Phelan, of Mont-Tremblant, showed she recovered from a devastating knee injury when she finished second in a World Cup ski cross event in Val Thorens, France, at the start of December. Phelan, who won a silver medal in ski cross in Pyeongchang, makes a comeback after several surgeries to repair damage she suffered in an accident during a competition in Megeve, France, in 2020 .

Her major competition in Beijing will come from Marielle Thompson of Whistler, BC, who is also returning to form after knee surgery.

The Dufour-Lapointe sisters of Montreal are on the verge of gaining more equipment in the mogul event in freestyle skiing. Justine, the youngest of the three to represent Canada at the Olympics, won the gold medal in Sochi in 2014, finishing ahead of her older sister Chloe. Justine added a silver medal in 2018.

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Olivia Asselin, a 17-year-old from Lac-Beauport, will participate in the big air slopestyle event. Her best years may be ahead of her, but she has been a member of the national team since the age of 15 and has finished in the top 10 on the World Cup circuit several times.

For two decades from the 1980s, Canada dominated acrobatic jumps and was led by a group dubbed the Quebec Air Force, but there are only two Quebecers on the current national team, Lewis Irving of Quebec and Marion Thénault from Sherbrooke. Thénault, 21, has made steady progress since being discovered at an RBC Training Ground event in 2017. A former gymnast and trampolinist, Thénault won a World Cup competition last winter in Kazakhstan, has finished third overall at the World Cup and was Rookie of the Year.

Moving away from the Olympics, teenage tennis star Leylah Fernandez is looking to capitalize on her success after winning her first WTA title and reaching the US Open final last year. The Laval native has the standings and the money to play in all major events and the only possible hurdle is another shutdown caused by a pandemic.

phickey@postmedia.com

twitter.com/zababes1

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Overworked Quebec health establishments forced to cancel staff vacations – Canada News https://celenire.com/overworked-quebec-health-establishments-forced-to-cancel-staff-vacations-canada-news/ Wed, 05 Jan 2022 17:41:00 +0000 https://celenire.com/overworked-quebec-health-establishments-forced-to-cancel-staff-vacations-canada-news/ Photo: The Canadian Press Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé. Several health authorities in Quebec are forced to cancel employee vacations as the province grapples with staff shortages and an increase in hospitalizations linked to COVID-19, and some workers fear it is the last straw . After working overtime without much time off since the start […]]]>

Several health authorities in Quebec are forced to cancel employee vacations as the province grapples with staff shortages and an increase in hospitalizations linked to COVID-19, and some workers fear it is the last straw .

After working overtime without much time off since the start of the pandemic, nurse Agathe Vézina said the latest measure looked like a slap in the face for healthcare workers.

Vézina, who works as a mental health nurse in Rouyn-Noranda, about 500 kilometers northwest of Montreal, is currently on vacation and does not yet know if she will be affected by the restrictions. But she is worried as she has reserved her free time based on the availability of childcare services for her 17-month-old son.

“What am I supposed to do with my son if I am asked to return to work tomorrow instead of next Sunday,” she asked. She said she worked hard for her spare time, “and they want to cut them off. Enough is enough.”

Quebec’s health ministry said Tuesday that many health facilities recently disclosed plans to cut vacations following an increase in hospitalizations and COVID-19 cases. Under a ministerial decree issued in the first months of the pandemic, employers in the health sector can suspend, cancel or deny vacations in the event of an emergency.

Robert Maranda, a spokesperson for the Department of Health, said facilities in some regions, including Quebec and Montreal, have been particularly affected by the latest wave fueled by the Omicron variant, with many employees testing positive for COVID -19 or forced to self-isolate due to exposure to a positive case.

“The number of outbreaks and the absence of employees affected by COVID-19 are high,” Maranda said in a statement, adding that canceling vacations is a last resort.

But the Federation of Health and Social Services, one of the largest health unions in Quebec, said it was crucial to find other solutions. “The employees are at their wit’s end,” Union Vice-President Josée Marcotte said in a text. “They are doing all they can to slow down the pandemic.”

Jean-Thomas Grantham, spokesperson for Quebec’s main hospital network, the CHU de Quebec-Université Laval, confirmed in an email that 807 employees were in isolation as of Monday.

“We have been forced to suspend vacations for some of our employees due to the situation we are currently experiencing in our hospitals,” Grantham said. The local health authority said on Tuesday that the measure had affected around 15 employees since the decree was introduced in March 2020.

In north Montreal, the public health authority said it is currently short of 660 health care workers. Emilie Jacob, spokesperson for the CIUSSS du Nord-de-l’Île-de-Montréal, said that invoking the ministerial order would avoid an interruption of services. “This measure is exceptional, and we prefer that everything be done on a voluntary basis,” Jacob said in an email Tuesday, unable to confirm how many people might have their holidays suspended.

The public health authority in Laval, north of Montreal, said it was “very sorry” for the impact the measure would have on families and employees. Judith Goudreau, of the CIUSSS de Laval, said she canceled the vacations until the end of January for at least 30 employees in certain settings, such as long-term care homes. The Laval network said that as of Tuesday, it had 478 employees with COVID-19 and 52 others in administrative segregation.

In the Chaudière-Appalaches region, south of Quebec, the management indicated that it was managing the situation on a case-by-case basis, without forcing employees to cancel vacations. “Before using these measures, we call on employees who wish, on a voluntary basis, to work overtime or even increase their availability to work more hours per week,” he said in a statement.

But on social media, healthcare workers are talking about a system that is at the end of its rope, and Vézina said the frustration was rampant. “There comes a time when everyone is tired, and our understanding turns to anger,” she said. “This is the sad reality for many of us.”


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