RCMP found Travis Vader’s fingerprint and DNA on beer can found in missing couple’s SUV

Written by admin on 15/11/2018 Categories: 老域名出售

EDMONTON — Accused killer Travis Vader’s fingerprint and DNA were on a beer can found in Lyle and Marie McCann’s SUV, RCMP say in newly released court documents.

Two dozen RCMP officers posed as criminals to build the case against Vader, who’s accused of the murders of the St. Albert couple, missing since 2010.

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Related

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  • Vader’s lawyer alleges Crown stayed charges to buy time to build ‘circumstantial case’

  • Crown calls Vader case a ‘disclosure fiasco’; Defence seeks to have murder charges dropped

  • Charges stayed against Travis Vader in McCann murders

    Three played major roles in the fabricated plot designed to draw in the prime suspect and coax damning evidence from him; 20 more made cameo appearances. All pretended to be part of a criminal organization looking to recruit Vader, according to documents that became public Monday when a judge granted a request from several local news organizations, including Global Edmonton, to lift a publication ban. The documents have not been presented or proven in court.

    In part, the documents read like a sort of laundry list of leads and theories to tie Vader to the 2010 crime.

    A paralegal working with the lead prosecutor even made a “things to do” list. On it was a note about Sheri Lynn Campbell, who used to share a home with Vader and whom he described to RCMP as his alibi.

    Text messages between the pair indicate that Campbell told police Vader was at the home from 2 a.m. on July 2, 2010, to 2 a.m. July 3, the day the McCanns were last seen as they gassed up their motorhome in preparation for a trip to B.C.

    READ MORE: The disappearance of Lyle and Marie McCann

    Two days later, the burned-out motorhome was found at a campground near Edson. Then, on July 16, the Hyundai Tucson SUV the couple had been pulling was found concealed about 25 kilometres east of the town. Inside, RCMP found the beer can, Marie McCann’s blood and Lyle McCann’s hat with a bullet hole in it. They say Vader used the couple’s cellphone at about 2 p.m. that day.

    READ MORE: Evidence ties Travis Vader to missing St. Albert couple’s SUV: Crown summary

    Vader was arrested on July 19, but he wasn’t charged with the murders until April 2012. The bodies of the McCanns have never been found.

    In March 2014, a month before his trial was to begin, Crown prosecutor Michelle Doyle stayed the charges, citing a huge gap in disclosure provided by the RCMP to the defence. Doyle said she was confident Vader would be convicted, but was concerned he may not receive a fair trial. Nine months later, the stay was lifted and the first-degree murder charges applied again.

    Vader is fighting to have the case thrown out, accusing the Crown of trying to buy more time to collect evidence. A judge is expected to rule on the abuse-of-process claim at the end of the month. If Vader’s trial goes ahead, it is scheduled to start March 7.

    READ MORE: ‘It appears that the police rushed to a judgement’: Vader’s lawyer 

    The paralegal jotted notes about the disclosure set-back, writing “2 years fought to keep in Vader. MD feels betrayed.”

    The documents released Monday also recount evidence from a man who said Vader gave him a “gold ruby ring” that belonged to the McCanns. The man said Vader took it from the motorhome and kept it at a cabin near his father’s place, along with “a lot more stuff.”

    The documents reveal that, as well as mounting the sizable undercover case, RCMP paid a jailhouse informant for information against Vader.

    In a sworn affidavit among the documents, an RCMP sergeant said as many as 10 undercover operations are going on in Alberta at any given time, lasting from several weeks to several years, with some remaining open indefinitely.

    It’s a dangerous job, said the sergeant, who coordinates undercover operations in Alberta.

    “I am aware of situations where suspects or targets have clearly indicated the intention to kill an officer upon discovery of an undercover operator’s true identity.”

    In one case, an operation was terminated because the suspect became suspicious, the sergeant said. RCMP intercepted audio of the suspect’s girlfriend reading newspaper coverage of the Jason Dix murder trial, when he realized he was the target of the same strategy used against Dix.

    RCMP spent months on an elaborate, undercover “Mr. Big” operation to gather evidence against Dix for the 1994 deaths of Tim Ordzyk, 33, and James Deiter, 24, whose bodies were discovered at a paper recycling plant in Sherwood Park. RCMP first thought they had been electrocuted, but both had been shot in the head three times.

    Dix spent nearly two years in jail and the case was eventually thrown out because of lack of evidence. He sued the Crown and RCMP for malicious prosecution and was awarded $765,000 in 2002. The case remains unsolved.

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Manitoba Ombudsman report leaves questions unanswered in dam purchase

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WINNIPEG —; The Manitoba government was not justified in an initial attempt to buy $5 million in flood-fighting equipment from a specific contractor without bids from others, the province’s ombudsman said Thursday.

But the 35-page report from Charlene Paquin also says that, in the end, the NDP government followed the rules.

The report neither completely clears nor condemns the government in a controversy it has faced since 2014.

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RELATED: Report raises questions over provincial spending on flood fighting equipment

The issue flared when Infrastructure Minister Steve Ashton tried to get approval for water-filled barrier tubes called Tiger Dams for flood-prone First Nations communities in the Interlake region north of Winnipeg.

An anonymous whistleblower complained to the ombudsman that Ashton pushed to have the contract awarded to a company run by a friend, who has contributed money to both Ashton’s and the NDP’s election campaigns.

In the end, the contract was put up for open bidding, but was never awarded. The First Nations communities went to the federal government to get the equipment.

RELATED: Manitoba premier welcomes probe into contract

The ombudsman’s report says senior public servants were concerned with Ashton’s attempt to sole-source the contract and pushed to have other equipment considered.

“Individuals we spoke with … indicated that departmental staff did not agree with waiving a competitive procurement process,” the report reads.

“However, as noted previously, the department was directed by the minister … to draft a submission that proposed an untendered contract for Tiger Dams.”

Government rules allow for contracts to be awarded without open bidding in sudden emergencies or when a specific product is needed and there is only one supplier.

“In this case, we did not review any evidence that the … requirements for ‘sole-source’ procurement were met,” Paquin wrote.

The report leaves questions about the actions of Ashton and other politicians largely unanswered, because the ombudsman does not have the power to investigate members of the legislature.

RELATED: Manitoba ombudsman to look at First Nations flood-fight purchasing

A government source, with first-hand knowledge of the discussions, told last year that Ashton made the request to the provincial Treasury Board, which insisted on open bidding.

The matter went to cabinet and Premier Greg Selinger initially backed Ashton’s request, said the source, who would only speak on condition of anonymity.

Selinger said last year he insisted on a full discussion by cabinet and Treasury Board, and then directed the contract be put up for bidding.

Ashton said First Nations communities asked specifically for Tiger Dams, which are distributed by only one company in Manitoba.

“They put forward what they wanted and needed,” Ashton said Thursday.

The ombudsman’s report does not delve into cabinet discussions at the time, but notes that some five weeks passed between when Treasury Board called for open contract bidding and when Ashton’s deputy minister agreed.

“We’ve all learned … we probably should have gone to tender right away. But I want to stress that our government makes no apologies for the intent of what we were doing,” Ashton said, referring to the need to help flood-prone communities.

Kelvin Goertzen, house leader for the Opposition Progressive Conservatives, said the premier should remove Ashton from cabinet.

“The NDP tried to override the civil service,” he said.

“The premier has to decide whether or not this is the kind of direction he wants within his government.”

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Iran sanctions and others a burden for Canada

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OTTAWA – Canada’s pending decision to lift sanctions on Iran will likely spark cheers at the country’s foreign ministry because the ever-expanding program has posed legal and staffing burdens.

A briefing note prepared for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau describes internal problems associated with one of Canada’s few foreign policy sticks — the sanctions imposed on nine countries, including Iran, North Korea and Russia.

The note was obtained by under the Access to Information Act.

Canada is expected to follow the world in lifting sanctions on Iran because it has complied with a landmark deal with six leading world powers that is aimed at preventing it from developing a nuclear bomb.

WATCH: Trudeau says he’s ‘pleased’ with Iran nuclear deal

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Canadian sanctions are imposed under two separate regimes: the United Nations and its own Special Economic Measures Act, or SEMA.

SEMA has proven problematic for officials at Global Affairs Canada because the number of countries facing sanctions under it has jumped to nine from two since 2010, the memo says, creating a heavy workload and legal headaches.

This has resulted in “greatly increasing the compliance burden for the private sector and creating resource and potential litigation challenges” for the department.

“As these procedural regimes have started to mature, foreign courts have begun to demand that increased procedural fairness be present in the listing and delisting of persons under such sanctions,” it says.

“It is likely that Canadian courts will demand the same procedural fairness in the event that any of Canada’s sanctions are challenged in court.”

A separate briefing note, also written for Trudeau last fall, says it is likely that Canada will be in a position to lift its Iranian sanctions “as early as winter 2016 and as late as summer 2016.”

READ MORE: U.S. imposing new sanctions on Iran for ballistic missile test: Obama

With Iran found to be in compliance with the nuclear deal as of last weekend, it would appear that the lifting of sanctions is imminent.

Trudeau has said Canada will also restore diplomatic relations with Iran, but the prime minister indicated Monday his cabinet will set the timing of that decision during an upcoming meeting.

Trudeau said he was pleased that “quiet diplomacy” led to successful negotiation of the Iran deal and would move it “towards respecting international expectations.”

Speaking to reporters at a cabinet retreat in New Brunswick, Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion said his fellow ministers would soon decide whether and how to lift the economic sanctions still in place.

Canadian companies won’t be able to compete for Iranian contracts until the sanctions are lifted, giving a leg up to their American counterparts. Dion suggested cabinet would make a decision quickly so as not to disadvantage Canadian companies.

WATCH: Lifting of Iran sanctions could further fuel oil’s slide, loonie drop

It may take longer, he said, to reopen the embassy in Iran.

“That’s something also that we’ll have to do step by step, how to re-engage with Iran when all the links have been cut,” Dion said.

“It cannot be done overnight, but the prime minister said very clearly during the campaign that this is something that we want to do properly in a timely fashion.”

Interim Conservative leader Rona Ambrose said the government should be wary about lifting sanctions on Iran, because it has not been trustworthy in the past.

“Let’s remember that once those sanctions are removed that Iran is going to flood the market with cheap oil, which has a huge effect on the Canadian economy as well,” she said.

The deal that Iran forged with the five permanent members of the UN Security Council — the U.S., Britain, France, Russia and China — plus Germany, is expected to provide it an estimated $100 billion in sanctions relief.

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US puts pressure on China to help with N. Korea sanctions

Written by admin on 26/04/2020 Categories: 老域名出售

SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of – A senior U.S. diplomat stepped up pressure on China on Wednesday to play a leading role in punishing North Korea for its recent nuclear test that raised worries about advancements in its bomb program.

U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken was in South Korea on a diplomatic push for tougher sanctions and punishment that can force change in the North. Key to those efforts is whether China, the North’s last major ally and a veto-wielding U.N. Security Council member, will join in imposing any harsh punishment on the North.

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“We believe that China has a special role to play given the special relationship that it has with North Korea,” Blinken told reporters after meeting with South Korean officials.

He said Beijing has “more influence and leverage” over Pyongyang than any other country because most its trade goes from, to or through China. “We are looking to China to show leadership on the issue,” Blinken said.

READ MORE: North Korea says it could halt nuke tests if US scraps drills

He flies to Beijing later Wednesday for talks on North Korea.

During a meeting with South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se, Blinken said Seoul and Washington are working closely in New York with the United Nations Security Council.

Yun said it is time for the international community to stand united to make North Korea face the consequences for its bomb test. “This is North Korea versus international community,” he said.

WATCH: North Korea claims it conducted hydrogen bomb test

China is expected to join in some U.N. sanctions, but won’t likely go as far as to take steps that might lead to the collapse of the North’s authoritarian government. China fears the onslaught of a wave of refugees and violence surging across the border, analysts say.

North Korea says it conducted a hydrogen bomb test on Jan. 6. Many governments and experts remain highly skeptical about the North’s claim, but whatever device North Korea detonated will likely push the country a step closer toward its goal of manufacturing a miniaturized warhead to place on a missile that can threaten the U.S. mainland.

After the bomb test, the rival Koreas resumed psychological warfare with Seoul blasting anti-Pyongyang broadcasts from border loudspeakers, while Pyongyang does the same and also floats propaganda leaflets over the border by balloon, according to South Korean officials.

—;

Associated Press video journalist Kim Yong-ho contributed to this report.

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Overfishing is underreported, says a new UBC study

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A new study released in Nature Communications says that 30 per cent of the fish being caught worldwide is not reported.

The study found the annual global catch to be roughly 109 million metric tons, about 30 per cent higher than the 77 million officially reported in 2010 by more than 200 countries and territories.

This means that 32 million metric tons of fish goes unreported every year, more than the weight of the entire population of the United States.

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“We know the catches, or we thought we did, by countries reporting to [the Food and Agriculture Organization] what they catch. Every year they report to [them],” said Daniel Pauly, a UBC professor with the UBC Fisheries Centre and lead author of the study.

But their findings indicate flaws in how the data is collected. Pauly and his team say most countries focus their data collection on industrial fishing, which overlooks artisanal, subsistence and illegal fishing, as well as discarded fish, which can be difficult to track.

He also pointed out that underreported locations don’t intend to cover-up catches that aren’t being reported.

“It’s simply that they don’t have the qualified personnel to report on that,” he said.

“Data are integral to maintaining global fisheries,” said Raechel Waters, senior program officer for ocean health for Vulcan Inc., which supported the study.

“Without an accurate understanding of fish catch, we risk underreporting or misreporting, which can handicap countries in their efforts to implement effective fisheries policy and management measures…this is particularly important for countries that do not have the resources to conduct comprehensive fishery assessments.”

Underreported locations include the South Pacific – where women conduct the fisheries – and in locations like Australia, Bahamas, South Africa and Florida where sports and recreational fishing are common. Discarded bycatch is also not included in data collection and Pauly estimates that adds up to about 10 million tonnes a year.

Pauly believes the solution is to simply back off fishing.

“If we let go a little bit and allow the stock to rebuild, we would get almost the same catch but on a sustained basis,” he said, adding that the North Sea herring is an example of a species that successfully rebuilt its stock after it was wiped out in Norway in the 1960’s.

“Why do we think fisheries have to be maintained at any cost including at the cost of destroying the marine ecosystem?” asks Pauly.

“We have to fish less.”

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Plastic in ocean could outweigh fish by 2050: report

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An ominous prediction warns of oceans filled with plastic —; so much that its mass would outweigh the waters’ fish.

The World Economic Forum has published a report predicting more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans by 2050.

READ MORE: Hunks of plastic found inside Fraser River steelhead

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  • B.C. company still awaiting federal approval for new food for farmed fish

  • Montreal recommends plastic bag ban by 2018

    Plastic is everywhere: a cheap, versatile material that is —; as the report notes —; often used only once before being discarded.

    “Plastics are the workhorse material of the modern economy – with unbeaten properties. However, they are also the ultimate single-use material,”
    Martin R. Stuchtey from the  McKinsey Center for Business and Environment says in the report.

    The use of plastics has increased 20-fold over the last 50 years, and the report says it will double again in the next 20.

    An estimated eight tonnes of plastics end up in the ocean every year, which is the equivalent of dumping the contents of a garbage truck into the ocean every minute, the report says. That is expected to double by 2050, and be four-fold by 2050.

    “The best research currently available estimates that there are over 150 million tonnes of plastics in the ocean today. In a business-as-usual scenario, the ocean is expected to contain 1 tonne of plastic for every 3 tonnes of fish by 2025, and by 2050, more plastics than fish (by weight).”

    Plastic takes a million years to break down. However, when recycled plastic can be made into new bottles, carpeting, and even clothing. But too often that doesn’t happen, and it’s costing the world billions, aside from the environmental effects.

    READ MORE: Canada’s place as ocean world leader at risk

    Canadians produce about 31 million tonnes of garbage every year, and only recycle about 30 per cent of all refuse, according to the Recycling Council of British Columbia.

    WATCH: Plastic warning from Vancouver Aquarium

    The report finds that this “linear consumption pattern” is rampant, sending trillions of dollars annually to the landfill.

    “Shifting to a circular model could generate a $706 billion economic opportunity, of which a significant proportion attributable to packaging,” the report states.

    The findings are based on interviews with more than 180 experts and analysis of over 200 reports.

    The report urges new technologies in material design, reprocessing and renewable sourcing; increased recycling infrastructure for developing nations, and more government action on implementing policies around the use of plastics.

    You can read the full report here.

    WATCH: Plastic pollution in the world’s oceans

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JobJar links unemployed Calgary energy workers with homeowners needing repairs

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CALGARY —; A new business is helping homeowners hire unemployed oil and gas workers for handyman-type jobs around the house.

In December, almost 60,000 people in the Calgary area were looking for work, after more than a year of cost-cutting by energy companies facing low oil prices.

“Right now, it’s the perfect time to actually give the opportunity to those right now unemployed,” Naomi Pereira, co-founder of Calgary-based JobJar, said.

Pereira’s background is in professional kitchen and bathroom renovations.

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  • Alberta Premier Notley creates advisory panel to improve, diversify economy

    City of Calgary hit by slumping economy

    Enmax, TransCanada, and Calgary Stampede announce layoffs

  • More layoffs and continued recession in 2016: ATB report

  • Small businesses call for emergency debate in Alberta Legislature amid looming layoffs

    JobJar will match what it calls “skilled doers” with homeowners hiring for repairs, such as replacing a faucet or light fixture, fixing a toilet or painting.

    “It’s bringing those together,” Pereira said. “JobJar has the experience of eliminating some of those (contractor) horror stories that we go through…and the trade on the other side as well–protecting them.”

    JobJar takes detailed information about the work offered, then provides homeowners with estimates, from both men and women in the directory.

    The homeowner chooses based on price, experience, availability and reviews. The company deals with payment and insurance.

    Calgarian Dumar Jaramillo said JobJar will allow him to earn income to support his family until more engineering positions open up.

    He is a professional engineer in oil and gas, with nearly two decades of experience, but has only landed ten weeks worth of contract work since May.

    “Every single position, you are competing against 30 or 40 resumes at the same time,” Jaramillo said.

    He’s been using his time without work to improve his home repair skills, including painting and re-decorating his young daughter’s room, and designing and building his deck.

    He believes JobJar will help bridge a gap between homeowners struggling to find contractors for smaller jobs, and skilled workers looking for employment.

    “It’s been a tough year, but we are trying to be positive about the situation and diversify our skills and make it work,” Jaramillo said.

    The JobJar directory also includes residential construction tradespeople seeking smaller jobs.

    The service is still expanding its list of of “skilled doers” for hire, and hopes to start taking jobs from homeowners in February or March.

    For now, you can access the database online, but you have to hire the handy-person yourself directly.

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Pronghorns captain Brock Hirsche facing battle with testicular cancer

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For the third time in the past year, a member of the U of L Pronghorns Men’s Hockey team is facing a battle with testicular cancer. Lethbridge native and ‘Horns captain Brock Hirsche revealed Tuesday night that he’s been diagnosed with the disease.

“Friday, right before the game in Regina we were driving on the bus to the rink and I got a message to call my doctor,” said Hirsche.

Hirsche, who hadn’t been feeling well, had undergone tests in prior weeks to find out what was wrong.

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“I mean, it wasn’t a huge shock,” said Hirsche. “You can only feel bad for so long, and you know your body. Feeling bad for four to six weeks you’re like, ‘I’m not just sick, something’s wrong.’”

The team’s goaltender Dylan Tait and athletic therapist Brennan Mahon faced the same battle and successfully won.

“We’ve dealt with this twice before now, with myself and Brennan,” said Tait. “There’s no reason why we shouldn’t be able to do this one more time for Brock. Then basically you’re just ready to drop absolutely everything, and do whatever needs.”

Tait’s been right by Hirsche’s side since the diagnosis, doing his best to share his experience and support his friend. He joined his captain at a doctor’s appointment on Tuesday.

“I was in there writing notes furiously most of the time so we could take a step back after and look at everything,” said Tait. “You wouldn’t have been able to drag me out of that room today.”

Hirsche, who’s known Tait since his minor hockey years, appreciates the support.

“The first night I found out we talked for about two hours and he ran me through everything,” said Hirsche. “I can’t thank Dylan enough for being by my side.”

Hirsche is set to start chemotherapy on Monday which he says is planned to take place over the next nine weeks. But the man his teammates call ‘the moose’ because of his toughness is ready to fight.

“It is what it is, I’m not going to stress about it really,” said Hirsche. “It’s going to be a tough road here for the next few weeks. But I’m fully prepared to beat it, we’ve had guys beat it before.”

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Economic downturn taking a toll on Calgary kids 

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CALGARY – Keeping up with kids can be an adventure – no matter what the situation at home.

But increased stress – about diminished investments, job insecurity or job loss – can take a toll on all members of the family.

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    Alberta’s economic downturn benefitting Calgary consignment and discount retail businesses

  • Largest donation in Alberta food banks’ history supports community during downturn

    “I’ve been off work for probably over a year now,” said Tony Binns, the father of a rambunctious five-year old. “Fortunately, I was able to work freelance since then. So I’ve been okay… but it’s always looming right? You’re always one paycheck from having to do something drastic like move or sell, so it’s pretty scary.”

    It’s something kids – at almost any age – are likely to pick up on.

    “It’s a reality that many kids are aware of whether their parents talk to them about it or not,” said Soraya Lakhani, clinical director of Yellow Kite Child Psychology.

    Calgary mother Anna Quan agrees.

    “Definitely. He can tell if we’re stressed out at home,” Quan said of her two-year-old son.

    READ MORE: Largest donation in Alberta food banks’ history supports community during downturn 

    The impact on families is, perhaps, most clear at the Calgary Food Bank. In 2015, at least 41 per cent of its clients were children, and that only includes children that came in as part of a family.

    It’s part of the reason why the food bank is teaming up with the Calgary Board of Education – so teachers can help identify kids that need help.

    “If you have no food at school chances are you’re going home and there’s probably no food there either,” said James McAra, CEO of the Calgary Food Bank.

    The Weekends And More or “WAM” program allows students at six Calgary schools to take food hampers home on weekends. Organizers are trying to expand it to ten schools by the end of the year.

    “They ask us on Mondays when the hampers will come,” said Esther Peltier, a teacher at Cecil Swanson School in northeast Calgary. “So there’s definitely a need and a growing need due to our economic times.”

    READ MORE: New set of job skills in demand during Alberta’s economic downturn 

    Experts recommend having open, honest and age-appropriate conversations with kids, and for parents to take quality time for themselves and their children.

    “What they need more than anything during that time is that their parents continue to be there for them and that they still have that loving caring relationship with their adult care-givers,” said Lakhani.

    For Binns, the job loss has had an unexpected silver lining. Freelance work has given him the ability to spend more time at home during some important years in his son’s life.

    “He noticed I was around a lot more. I’m not sure if he enjoys that or doesn’t enjoy that. You’d have to to ask him.”

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Gas price drops below 70 cents per litre in Edmonton

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EDMONTON — If you’re looking for cheap gas, you’re in luck. Several gas stations in Edmonton dropped their prices below 70 cents per litre overnight.

According to the website gasbuddy老域名购买, the Costco gas station on 149 Street was selling gas for 63.9 cents per litre Tuesday afternoon.

This is the lowest gas price Edmonton has seen in more than 10 years, according to the price-tracking website.

Gas prices in Edmonton over the last 10 years, according to gasbuddy老域名购买.

Credit: Gasbuddy老域名购买

Several other Edmonton stations are selling fuel between 64.5 cents per litre and 68.4 cents per litre.

Our neighbours to the south are also seeing some relief at the pumps, as gas prices in Calgary dropped to as low as 67.9 cents per litre Tuesday.

READ MORE: Calgary gas prices drop below 70 cents per litre

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  • Relief for Edmonton drivers as gas prices continue to drop

  • Bargain gas prices in some Canadian cities won’t last long, say experts

  • Here’s why gas prices are climbing in Canada while oil plummets

    “All of the gasoline that we price, whether it is from British Columbia all the way to Thunder Bay, Ont. and everything in between, is based on what happens in the Chicago markets, and the upper U.S. Midwest refinery picture has been very poor over the past year,” petroleum analyst Dan McTeague said. “Demand has gone up and refiners there have not been able to adequately supply the market; they’ve been falling behind. That ended around Christmastime, and now they’re really catching up.”

    McTeague said “the economics for crude are pretty simple.”

    “There’s plenty of it, too much of it, no real demand; whereas gasoline is more of a finite market. It’s like comparing the cost of a new home versus the cost of lumber: yeah, you need one to build the other, but the total cost for the other is far greater.”

    WATCH: Edmonton is experiencing the lowest gas price in more than 10 years, but Erin Chalmers explains why when you look at the bigger picture, the low prices aren’t a good sign.

    In August, Edmontonians were paying approximately $1.20 a litre to fill up their tanks.

    With files from Erika Tucker, Global News.

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Lightning beat Oilers 6-4 for 6th straight win

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TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning have a season-high six-game winning streak. Next up — their Stanley Cup Final opponents, the Chicago Blackhawks, who have won 12 in a row for a franchise record.

Brian Boyle scored a go-ahead, short-handed goal in the third period to lead the Lightning over the Edmonton Oilers 6-4 on Tuesday night. The Lightning will host Chicago Thursday night in the Blackhawks’ first game in Tampa since beating the Lightning in last season’s final.

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    “We turned the page on last year,” Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said. “But the storyline is going to read, the Stanley Cup Finals a year later. Eighteen wins between the two. So, somebody’s streak is going on.”

    The Lightning also got goals from Nikita Nesterov, Nikita Kucherov, Ondrej Palat, Vladislav Namestnikov and Alex Killorn. Zack Kassian, Mark Letestu, Leon Draisaitl and Iiro Pakarinen scored for Edmonton.

    “We’re not going to win many games giving up six,” Oilers coach Todd McLellan said.

    “I thought some of our grinders did their thing tonight. I wasn’t overly impressed with a lot of our skilled players.”

    The Oilers said centre Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, hurt blocking a shot in Monday’s 4-2 win at Florida, will miss six to eight weeks with a hand injury. Edmonton right wing Nail Yakupov needed help skating off the ice 5 minutes into Tuesday’s game, but returned later in the period.

    READ MORE: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins out 6-8 weeks

    Boyle gave Tampa Bay a 5-4 lead when he beat goalie Anders Nilsson to the puck and scored from the left circle at 7:42 of the third. Killorn added an empty-netter.

    “We beat ourselves,” Letestu said. “Tonight we gave easy offence.”

    After Draisaitl scored during a two-on-one breakaway at 2:10 of the third, Pakarinen got Edmonton even at 4 when he beat Andrei Vasilevskiy from the right circle 2:19 later.

    Namestnikov extended the Lightning lead to 4-2 at 17:12 of the second when he reached from the behind net with his stick and knocked in the puck after Palat’s left circle shot went high into the air off Nilsson and behind the goalie.

    Palat gave Tampa Bay a 3-2 lead at 6:09 of the second. Namestnikov set up the goal with a backhand pass while falling to the ice.

    Kucherov put the Lightning up 2-1 with 3:03 to go in the first on his 19th goal this season that extended his point streak to six games.

    Letestu made it 2-2 on a short-handed goal with 33.3 seconds left in the first.

    After Nesterov opened the scoring at 3:57 of the first, Kassian tied it just 88 seconds later.

    Lightning captain Steven Stamkos had an eventful game, getting two assists and making an errant pass that lead to the first Edmonton goal. He got a tripping penalty midway through the second for kicking the leg of Kassian.

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More Canadian vacationers come forward with reports of illness on Sunwing trips

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TORONTO —; A growing number of Sunwing Vacations customers are stepping forward to say they got seriously ill on trips booked with the Toronto-based tour operator in recent months.

“I am still a week later struggling,” said Amanda Klein, 26, of Medicine Hat, Alta.

Klein and a group of friends spent a week at the Memories Paraiso Azul Beach Resort in Cayo Santa Maria, Cuba in early January. She says she became violently sick with diarrhea and vomiting soon after arriving.

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READ MORE: Canadian travellers report illnesses at Cuban resorts promoted and operated by Sunwing

After new reports of illnesses at the Cuban resort–widely reported by Global News in 2015–many other Sunwing customers came forward to say they experienced illness, too.

“We tried to ride it out but it got so bad that my husband ended up in emergency,” said Ashlee Hanefeld, who stayed with her husband at the Memories Varadero resort from Dec. 26 to Jan. 3.

Hanefeld said medical testing later revealed her husband suffered from Salmonella poisoning, a potentially serious food-borne intestinal infection.

Alejandra Cline stayed at the Memories resort in Cuba with her husband and two children in the first week of January, having paid for an upgraded room.

“The food was bad. I had a piece of bread and it was completely rotten in the inside, you could smell the mold,” Cline said. “It was just a really bad experience.”

Canadians returning from Cuba for years have complained about the blandness of food served at some all-inclusive resorts in the country. But travelers told Global News they witnessed unsafe food-handling practices which they believe contributed to illness.

“I didn’t expect for the food to be prepared in such an unsanitary manner,” said Celina Radoi, who visited Cuba twice before her visit to the Memories Paraiso Azul in late December.

“The cross-contamination was what struck me the most. Staff would use the same utensils to cook the raw meat and the vegetables. The food would be sitting out for hours  This was just what we could see; I don’t want to know what was happening back in the kitchen,” she said.

Most travelers who contacted Global News with food safety complaints say buffet items that should be kept refrigerated, like cold cuts and cheese, were left exposed to heat for hours, melting in the heat of the intense sun. Conversely, items that ought to be kept warm were not heated, they said.

“We can’t generalize this is happening 100 per cent of the time but it can happen anytime,” said Dr. Mark Wise, a Toronto physician and travel health specialist.

He says even at the best of times, buffets pose potential risks to diners because of the possibility that food isn’t managed properly.

“Those are all signs of improper food handling,” Wise said when asked to comment on reports by travelers of inadequate refrigeration and lack of heating in restaurants at various resorts.

But in contrast to allegations of poor conditions leading to illness, Sunwing denies there’s a serious problem.

“During the past three months, 400,000 Canadian customers have travelled with us to tropical destinations,” said Rachel Goldrick, corporate communications manager at Sunwing.

“Of these, less than two per cent have contacted us to address any type of complaint or concern, with a small fraction of these relating to concerns around hygiene or illness,” Goldrick said.

READ MORE: Sunwing offers compensation to Canadian travellers after outbreak at Cuban resort

“We work very hard to ensure that our customers’ vacation experience is a positive one, which is exemplified by our customer satisfaction rate of 94 per cent based on over 500,000 survey results annually,” she said.

But Tracy Reker disagrees.

“We feel mislead, lied to, and feel the trip was a complete waste of our hard-earned dollars,” Reker said after returning from the Be Live resort in Punta Cana on Jan. 8, booked through Sunwing.

Reker said she estimated “70 per cent of the resort” was ill during the week she vacationed with her husband and two children. She says Sunwing shouldn’t continue to book Canadians into resorts like Be Live.

“Bottom line: Sunwing continues to send people to this resort when they are fully aware that people have been deathly ill there just days before! The reviews on Trip Advisor are enough to make you cringe,” Reker said.

A year ago, Tina and Chris Riley took a Sunwing vacation to the Club Amigo Carisol Los Corales in Cuba. The Toronto couple say they had reasonable expectations about the resort, but didn’t expect what they found: the lowest floor entirely closed because of previous hurricane damage. And something unwanted in their own room.

“She (the maid) opened the closet and whole closet was moldy,” said Tina, who insisted the family be moved.

But Chris says, in general, Sunwing’s on-site representative minimized any concerns or complaints about the resort which included worries about the family’s personal security.

“I would never, ever fly with Sunwing again,” he said.

Michael Gibbons of Toronto, who said he has flown with Sunwing twice, says he will find another tour operator after two poor experiences.

“Truly, it’s one more example of you get what you pay for and in the future we’ll be paying for Air Canada and West Jet.”

Editor’s Note: This story was corrected on Jan. 20th to note the Rileys trip was to Cuba and not to the Dominican Republic.

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Bill 6: Alberta says 6 task forces will craft farm safety rules starting in June

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Alberta’s agriculture minister says he hopes to get going as soon as next month on a process to craft the regulations that will underpin the new farm safety law, Bill 6.

Oneil Carlier, speaking to reporters Tuesday, said the plan is to have six working groups composed of industry experts and front-line farmers and ranchers.

READ MORE: Cheering crowds to furious farmers – Some key events in Alberta NDP’s 1st year

Carlier said they will help guide the process as the province drafts rules in the areas of occupational health and safety, labour relations and employment standards.

Watch below: A selection of Global’s coverage on Bill 6

Now what? Southern Alberta farmers and ranchers discuss next steps for Bill 6

02:01

Now what? Southern Alberta farmers and ranchers discuss next steps for Bill 6

02:30

Rachel Notley receives threats over Bill 6

02:15

Premier, MLAs threatened during Bill 6 debate

02:08

Fiery legislative sitting wraps up as Bill 6 is passed

03:40

Energy minister breaks down in tears during final Bill 6 debate

01:15

Bill 6 passes third reading 44-29

01:37

Farmers convoy on Highway 2A to protest Bill 6

02:04

Alberta government could limit debate on Bill 6

03:46

Bill 6 meeting in Lethbridge draws crowd of nearly 1000 people



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Related

  • Alberta farmers sound off as controversial Bill 6 is debated in legislature

  • Bill 6 passes third reading after heated debate

    Carlier said he is reaching out to industry groups now to see if they can assist on finding the best people.

    READ MORE: Alberta government looks for experts to help develop Bill 6 regulations

    There would be between 10 and 12 members for each of the six groups.

    “We’re looking to have a very broad cross-representation from farming and ranching stakeholder groups as well as from labourers and workers themselves,” said Carlier.

    He said the hope is to get the groups organized by mid-February.

    “It's still a work in progress,” he said.

    The new law gives workers compensation benefits to paid farm workers injured on the job effective Jan. 1 of this year.

    It also puts farms under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

    Farms must meet a basic standard of care until specific rules and regulations are hashed out in the next year to 18 months.

    READ MORE: Alberta Beef Producers meeting in Red Deer to develop Bill 6 strategy

    The farm safety bill passed late last year against a backdrop of angry protests from farmers.

    Alberta was the only jurisdiction in Canada without employment standards coverage for farm and ranch workers and one of the few without WCB coverage when the NDP government introduced the legislation last fall.

    Opponents have said they are concerned the regulations will cripple family farms with too much red tape or will have blanket regulations that are unworkable and unadaptable to farm operations.

    READ MORE: ‘We’re listening’ – Alberta government takes to the airwaves to promote Bill 6

    The opposition Wildrose and Progressive Conservative parties have said the legislation moved too far too fast in the house and that more discussion was needed.

    Some farmers have said they fear the legislation will not only destroy the profitability of their operations but also prevent moms and dads from passing the farm culture on to their children.

    Premier Rachel Notley has stressed the legislation does not apply to family members and that the farm tradition will not be endangered.

    READ MORE – ‘Rachel Notley has to go’: Hundreds rally outside Alberta Legislature

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