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Canada needs to start taking long-term care more seriously

Saturday, July 11th, 2020

There is a consensus developing among provincial politicians and advocates for senior citizens that only Ottawa can provide the funding needed to better train and better pay care workers… But if Ottawa is going to pony up, then it can and should set national standards.

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I was Stephen Harper’s criminal justice adviser. But I now think Canada should decriminalize drugs

Saturday, July 11th, 2020

Conservative politicians bear much blame for demonizing people who use drugs – derisively calling them “junkies” and “addicts” – opposing life-saving measures such as supervised drug-use sites and “safe supply,” and fearmongering for votes about drug decriminalization. Politicians must know that their action and inaction is continuing to cost lives. History will judge them for it.

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Canada updates law to allow non-biological legal parents to pass on their citizenship to children

Friday, July 10th, 2020

…in the past, children born abroad to Canadians were automatically granted citizenship if they met one of two conditions: If there was a genetic link between the parent and the child or if the parent gave birth to the child. From now on… the government will allow non-biological legal parents to pass on their Canadian citizenship… including the LGBTQ+ community and parents experiencing infertility issues

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Police chiefs call on Ottawa to decriminalize simple drug possession

Friday, July 10th, 2020

The group, which includes the chiefs of most police forces in the country, said a shift in federal drug laws is urgently needed to divert these users away from the courts and into the hands of health care and social-service providers. This is a long-standing demand of activists, scientists and public-health officials from across the country… less than two Canadians die per day of homicide and we have 11 Canadians a day dying of overdose

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COVID-19 could change the way we feed Canadians

Monday, July 6th, 2020

In responding to the challenges brought on by COVID-19, government, food producers, and the charities that support Canadians with food came together with unprecedented urgency ­–­ and now is not the time to lose the progress we’ve made… The most effective interventions during this crisis have been the boldest ones – the system-wide changes that strike at the heart of the problem, instead of efforts that tinker around the margins.

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There will be no ‘V-shaped recovery.’ But here’s how we can ensure the post-pandemic economy works for everyone

Sunday, July 5th, 2020

… well-directed public spending, particularly investments in the green transition, can be timely, labour-intensive (helping to resolve the problem of soaring unemployment) and highly stimulative – delivering far more bang for the buck than, say, tax cuts. There is no economic reason why countries… can’t adopt large, sustained recovery programs that will affirm – or move them closer to – the societies they claim to be.

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Universal basic income is a means of liberation and dignity for all

Friday, July 3rd, 2020

It would be wrong to cast this universal basic income as an act of charity. Or worse, if it were seen as a vehicle to encourage indolence. Rather, a GIS should be an act of dignity. Citizens would earn the basic income by working two to three days a week in a community service of their choice. In doing so, we would pursue an economy that serves the people by advancing the common good.

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Why we need to start spending on infrastructure, and fast

Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

The money lost by underemployed workers, businesses and governments is unlikely to be fully recovered… the longer we wait, the more assets permanently lose value… the effects of the pandemic on the economy will invariably reduce the ability of Canadians to finance the services and infrastructure they previously expected – a perverse dynamic that will only worsen with the duration of underemployment.

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The 2020-21 academic year will be the best ever for postsecondary students who need a hand financially

Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

… students who will have to borrow to cover their costs – half the undergrad population in a normal year – should consider how much extra money there is this year. Enough to chop thousands off their total amount borrowed, and years off the time it takes to repay the loan. Here’s a list of financial resources available to students for the 2020-21 academic year

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Canada’s bail system is broken and unjust. The Supreme Court shows how to fix it

Friday, June 26th, 2020

The Court says the default position should be to automatically grant bail with no conditions, other than that the person attend their next court date. Other conditions should only be imposed to the degree they address three questions: “Is this person a flight risk; will their release pose a risk to public protection and safety; or is their release likely to result in a public loss of confidence in the administration of justice?”

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