News

1. Brenda Lucki

RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki testified at the Mass Casualty Commission on August 23, 2022.

This item is written by Tim Bousquet.

Yesterday, RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki testified at the proceedings of the Mass Casualty Commission.

Much of Lucki’s testimony revolved around the failures of the RCMP to implement recommendations that came from previous tragedies, like those spelled out in the MacNeil Report after the Moncton shootings. Lucki described the RCMP as a large ship that needed turning, but in order to do so, the entire organization has to be on page and involved. But some of the institutional failures seem to rest with Lucki herself.

For example, Lucki has for years been talking about the need for a comprehensive family liaison support system for victims of crime, but she has taken no concrete steps to implement any training for family liaison officers.

After the Nova Scotia mass murders of April 2020, a single, RCMP officer — Wayne “Skipper” Bent — was assigned as family liaison officer for the families of the 21 civilian victims of the killer (two family liaison officers were assigned to the family of Cst. Heidi Stevenson). Bent was well-intentioned and worked hard, but perhaps because he was untrained for the role, he made some terrible mistakes, like telling Nick Beaton that the investigation was trying to determine whether his wife Kristen was involved in a relationship with the killer (there has never been any indication that this was a possibility).

Of course, what everyone was focused on was Lucki’s involvement in the post-event press conferences, and specifically whether that involvement amounted to political interference in the investigation.

The Mass Casualty Commission has made public several documents related to an April 28, 2020 conference call between Lucki and her staff in Ottawa, and the RCMP’s leadership and comms team in Nova Scotia. These documents include a series of emails written in the week before the call, notes Superintendent Darren Campbell took during the call, and a letter comms person Lia Scanlan wrote to Lucki a year after the call.

The Nova Scotian participants came away from the call understanding that Lucki was angry that Campbell had not named the kinds of weapons during the murder spree, because Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Public Safety Minister Bill Blair wanted to use that information to advance a gun control agenda.

Lucki had a different take on it. She said she was indifferent to the proposed gun control legislation, but Blair’s office had asked her if the makes of the weapons would be made public, a question she characterized as simply that, a question, and not an order that the weapons be named. She asked the Nova Scotian comms team if the weapons would be named, and was told they would be, and she related that answer back to Blair’s office. But then the press conference came, and the weapons were not named, which angered her, again, not because she wanted to advance the politicians’ gun control agenda, but because she had told them the wrong information.

Despite Lucki’s presentation otherwise yesterday, everyone in Nova Scotia understood Lucki’s displeasure as being related to the gun control agenda.

It became apparent to me that Lucki rose to her position because she expertly uses the lingo and distracting babble of bureaucracy to navigate through difficult waters without being drowned by the reality of, well, fact. She talks fast and broadly, owning success and placing the blame for failure on a stagnant institution — what are you going to do?

I don’t know that we’ll ever get to a common, universally-shared understanding of Lucki’s (and the politicians’) involvement in the post-event press conferences, but for myself, I came away from yesterday’s proceedings feeling like I had spent the day in a spin class, and not of the stationary bicycle kind.

Lucki’s testimony continues today, when she will be cross examined by lawyers representing the victims’ families, and by the police union lawyers. I’ll be live tweeting the testimony via my Twitter account, @Tim_Bousquet.
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2. Council: Surplus properties for affordable housing, cooling centres, construction noise

Halifax City Hall in June 2021. — Photo: Zane Woodford

Zane Woodford has a pretty detailed report from Halifax regional council’s meeting yesterday:

At its meeting on Tuesday, Halifax regional council voted to declare the properties “surplus,” and classify them as either “remnant,” “extraordinary,” or affordable housing.

Under the municipality’s administrative order governing surplus properties, those classified affordable housing will be “disposed of through direct sale, or a call for submissions, open to eligible not-for-profit organizations meeting the submission requirements and program criteria” set by HRM.

Those properties include 48 Pinecrest Dr. in Dartmouth, 9 Howland Ct. in Lower Sackville, and “Lot E-1” on Brunswick Street in Halifax.

Some councillors had questions about the properties, though. Coun. Waye Mason wanted to know how the muncipality would make sure the lots are used for affordable housing saying, “I would hate to see this key piece of property get kind of swept into one of those BS CMHC 10% off market rate for 10 years things. Those are useless and embarrassing.”

Also in Woodford’s roundup: councillors want to see cooling centres in the city next summer; bylaw amendments will mean noisy construction work will now stop an hour and a half earlier than usual; “living shoreline” and “floating treatment wetlands” will protect the health of Kearney Lake; and HRM will write a letter to the feds about abortion access.

Click here to read Woodford’s full roundup.

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3. Funds will support review of process to licence, register internationally trained nurses

Photo: Nova Scotia Nurses Union

This item was written by Yvette d’Entremont.

The Nova Scotia College of Nursing (NSCN) has received provincial funding to help support its ongoing review of the process for licensing and registering internationally educated nurses.

On Tuesday, the provincial Department of Health and Wellness announced a one-time funding amount of  $340,000 towards the review. In a media release, the province said the review will examine how the current process can be “further streamlined” so that internationally-educated nurses can get licenses more quickly. 

The funding will also go towards hiring new staff to undertake the work. 

“The demand for healthcare professionals, including nurses, has increased since the pandemic started, with all jurisdictions competing to attract these highly skilled workers,” Michelle Thompson, Minister of Health and Wellness, said in the release. 

The Nova Scotia College of Nursing has already taken steps this year to make registration and licensing more efficient, with the release noting that the number of internationally educated nurses is “up significantly.”

So far this year, “more than 210” nurses have obtained licenses, an increase of about 60 when compared with all of 2021.

The college has added more options for internationally educated nurses to meet the English language proficiency requirement and provided earlier access to the national registration exam. Among other things, it has also streamlined and reduced required documentation and provided conditional licenses to nurses who are “already registered, licensed and in good standing elsewhere in Canada.”

“NSCN is pleased to receive funding from the provincial nursing strategy to support our work to continue to evaluate and change the registration and licensure processes to reduce the time it takes for qualified internationally educated nurses to receive a nursing licence,” Sue Smith, the college’s CEO and registrar, said in the release.

“We are committed to continuing to conduct a detailed assessment of the unique circumstances of each applicant because there is no one-size-fits-all solution. While we are very pleased with the changes we have made to our policies thus far, we are committed to continuing to evaluate our policies to make sure they are relevant, flexible and positively contribute to the supply of nurses, while simultaneously meeting NSCN’s legislated mandate to protect the public.”  

Last month, the Department of Health and Wellness announced it would fund 200 new nursing seats, and last October made a commitment that over the next five years every graduating nurse is guaranteed a full-time job. In June, the province expanded eligibility criteria to allow more Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) to qualify for bachelor of science (nursing) programs at Cape Breton University and St. Francis Xavier University.

The funding from Nova Scotia’s Nursing Strategy was provided in June. There are currently 185 internationally educated nurse applicants in the registration and licensing process, and on average, NSCN licenses about 140 internationally educated nurses annually. The number was 152 in 2021.

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4. Hood Habits

Some of the cast members of Hood Habits. Photo: Matthew Byard

On the weekend Matthew Byard went to the dress rehearsal for Hood Habits, a musical with an all-Black cast that’s based on a graphic novel by Curtis Bell. Byard spoke with Tara Taylor, who wrote and directed the musical. Byard writes:

The play is based on the real-life journal entries written by at-risk youth from the Jane and Finch neighbourhood in Toronto. Taylor said five years ago Kayla Borden, who’s a board member with the association, approached her about a play someone wanted them to consider producing.

“When she sent it over to me it was a graphic novel by Curtis Bell. And I went through it, and I said, ‘Kayla, this ain’t no musical,’” Taylor said in an interview with the Examiner. “I thought it was already a script.”

Curtis Bell is an educator and former CFL player from Hamilton, who in 2009, started a mentorship program where he took at-risk kids from Jane and Finch to a First Nations reserve in Hamilton.

“He was trying to help them get back to their youth,” said Taylor.

Through the program, known as 9 Heavens Healing Academy, Bell took 40 kids aged 12 to 17 involved in Blood and Crip gang culture on 80 weekend retreats over the course of four years.

The program was said to have been responsible for quashing many rivalries among the youth and helped restore their lives. The kids were encouraged to journal and share their stories of anguish, triumph, worries, and fears. Bell published his graphic novel, Hood Habits, in 2016.

Byard also interviewed some of the cast members, including Harmony Adesola, who plays the role of Flex, and Deryl Amenya, who plays the story’s main antagonist, Flex’s uncle Shamus.

Hood Habits opens at the Lighthouse Arts Centre on Thursday night and there are shows Friday evening and Saturday and Sunday afternoon.

Click here to read Byard’s story.

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5. Landmark costumes

Colin J. Muise dressed as The Wave.

A few weeks ago I saw a post on Halifax Noise of Colin J. Muise dressed as the Town Clock posing next to the actual Town Clock. Then last week, I saw another post of Muise dressed as The Wave sculpture posing next to that piece of artwork on the Halifax waterfront.

So, this week I decided to find out more about Muise and his work.

Muise, who is an X-ray technician full time and taught himself how to sew, also sells his photographs of landmarks with a twist. He started this project of costumes of local landmarks last Halloween when he made a costume of the Peggy’s Cove lighthouse to wear to a party. When he shared of a photo of himself in it months later, it went viral, so he decided to make more costumes. The most recent one is The Wave sculpture. Muise shared those photos just last week. 

“I think I’m more surprised no one had come along and done like this before me,” Muise said. “It doesn’t feel like a terribly novel idea. I think in that regard everyone is very thrilled and excited that someone is doing it finally.” 

“But I’ve been on the internet long enough to know that you never quite know the reaction you’re going to get. I did have an idea of what I might be getting into when I posted it, but I certainly didn’t know or expect it to turn out to be this level of support behind it.” 

Muise as the Town Clock.

Muise said he’s now working on a costume of the Tuft’s Cove smokestacks, plus another one he’s keeping as a surprise for now.

Click here to read that story.

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6. The ‘open secret’ about Donald Sobey

In the Globe and Mail, Stephen Kimber and Joe Castaldo have this story about the “open secret”of Donald Sobey’s sexual assault on a young man named Derek Power in 1991.

One afternoon before an August long weekend in 1991, a criminal lawyer appeared in a Halifax courtroom on behalf of his client, grocery magnate Donald Sobey. A few months prior, Mr. Sobey had been charged with sexually assaulting a young man in a downtown hotel room. Mr. Sobey was a prominent figure in Atlantic Canada by then, serving as chairman of Empire Co. Ltd., his family’s sprawling holding company that included the Sobeys grocery chain. He was also a member of the board of governors at Dalhousie University, where the victim was a student.

Mr. Sobey did not appear in court that day when his lawyer entered a plea: guilty to a summary offence of sexual assault. The judge issued a $750 fine, according to a local news report that ran about 400 words. Afterward, his lawyer dismissed the charge as a minor matter that had been “handled appropriately and expeditiously,” while Mr. Sobey, then 56, put out his own statement. “I have learned that in Canadian law, sexual assault covers an extraordinarily broad range of activities ranging from extremely serious to comparatively minor. The summary charge indicates a minor offence,” he said. “I apologize for any offence which was taken and also for taking up the time of the justice system.” Mr. Sobey thanked his family for their support, adding he had learned how “a person can find new strength in difficult times.”

With that, the story ended.

Sobey died last year at the age of 86, but as Kimber and Castaldo learned, the story didn’t end for Power, now 51, who remembers Sobey much differently than what was said and written about the grocery magnate last year.

Mr. Power has never spoken publicly about any of this. He tried at first, calling up local newspapers when charges were laid, but never heard back. Later, he wasn’t allowed to talk. In 1992, he reached a private settlement with Mr. Sobey that bound him to a non-disclosure agreement. If breached, he was to pay $20,000 to the man who assaulted him. The agreement meant he could not share widely that this was not some random encounter. He couldn’t share that he had been friends with the Sobey family, that he vacationed with them, that Mr. Sobey had fawned over him and promised him a future in the company. Few people knew there had been another unwanted encounter that occurred when Mr. Power was a teenager.

He was open with those close to him about what had happened, and told Joanne Klimaszewski, now his wife, not long after they met. Years later, he spoke with another media outlet, despite the NDA, but the story was dropped. After all, Mr. Sobey had been charged and admitted his guilt. What more was there to say? On the surface, one could argue the system worked, unlike the many instances in which powerful men have gotten away with predatory behaviour for years, only to be undone amid the #MeToo movement.

But it never felt like justice to him. Mr. Sobey was a powerful and well-regarded business man, who continued through life uninterrupted. He could put out a statement that presented the assault he committed as an ordeal for him, one that taught him about resilience. He remained on the boards of influential Canadian institutions, such as Toronto-Dominion Bank and Dalhousie University, and built goodwill through philanthropy. He had the power to shape his legacy, to influence what was remembered, forgotten, and never known at all.

Kimber and Castaldo chronicle Power’s story, including the sexual assault on Power by Sobey, and why Power left Nova Scotia because of all the reminders — including Sobeys stores, shopping bags, and commercials — he faced each day.

It’s a long read, but you should read it.

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Views

Quiet quitting: the new “no one wants to work anymore”

Photo: Andrea Piacquadio/Pexels

There’s a new term out there now in the continuing battle between workers and employers. It’s called “quiet quitting” and I learned about it last week. There are news stories about it everywhere. And when I started reading about it I thought, “is quiet quitting the new ‘no one wants to work anymore?’” And well, it looks like it might just be.

Turns out, quiet quitting is not quitting at all. Here’s what it means according to this article by James Tapper in The Guardian:

Rather than working late on a Friday evening, organising the annual team-building trip to Slough or volunteering to supervise the boss’s teenager on work experience, the quiet quitters are avoiding the above and beyond, the hustle culture mentality, or what psychologists call “occupational citizenship behaviours”.

Instead, they are doing just enough in the office to keep up, then leaving work on time and muting Slack. Then posting about it on social media.

So, quiet quitting means doing the job you were hired to do, knowing your boundaries, having a good work-life balance, rejecting the “hustle culture,” and not going above and beyond for an employer who’s not doing the same for you.

Yay for quiet quitting!

Workers are sharing their stories about it on TikTok. According to Tapper in The Guardian, the term “quiet quitting” may have been inspired by the Chinese social media hashtag TangPing, which means lying flat. That hashtag is now censored in China.

If there’s one good thing that can come out of this pandemic it’s that workers are having their say and setting some boundaries. People have decided their lives are more than their jobs. As I wrote back in March, it’s not that people don’t want to work; it’s that no one wants to work for terrible bosses who pay crap wages while exploiting their talent.

People can love their work and their jobs, but going the extra mile will almost never pay off for some workers out there, including women, Black people, and people of colour (these are the same workers who prefer working from home, too. That’s not a coincidence).

Yet workers are often told they should just be grateful to have a job, or they should “lean in” to get ahead, or, of course, they are guilted with the phrase “no one wants to work anymore.”

It’s not hustle that gets most people ahead; it’s often gender, connections, priviledge, and knowing how to BS with the higher-ups. I’ve seen it before, and I’m sure you have, too. You can lean in all you want, but sometimes when you do, someone else uses your back as a bridge to get where they want to be.

In response to quiet quitting, workers have created another term about their employers: “quiet firing.” They’re not being so quiet about it either. Here are some definitions of quiet firing:

Quiet Firing” is when companies fail to deliver pay rises, remove toxic employees and demand long hours. They don’t want you there. Its the same as “Quiet Quitting” just with the right perspective.

Not enjoying this “quiet firing” trend where my boss keeps giving me more and more responsibilities but never gives me time off or a raise.

All this “quiet quitting” talk is going around so I wanna bring up “quiet firing” where they don’t give hardworking employees raises for years yet always find a way to give the CEO millions in bonuses.

“Quiet quitting” is a way to blame the employees. While “quiet firing” has been happening for decades – not giving employees raises except when the MW [minimum wage] goes up, dismissing all HR complaints, & pushing employees to the point they quit so no unemployment payout.

If your employer regularly expects you to do more than your job description for the same pay, call it what it is: quiet firing. Makes a lot more sense than this “quiet quitting” nonsense.

Related: Benjamin Shingler and Graeme Bruce with CBC had this story about where the workers have gone and why the current labour shortage will persist. CBC analyzed data from Statistics Canada that found workers were moving between sectors, including from “jobs in the service and food industries, to potentially more lucrative positions in fields such as tech, finance and real estate.”

An examination of the data also reveals a longer term shift in the country’s labour market, spurred not just by the transformative past two years, but by demographic shifts that have been underway for decades.

CBC created charts from all the data showing not only the migration between sectors, but in what sectors wages have — or have not — increased, and the reasons for leaving a job. It’s all good stuff that shows we may be in this shortage for a while.

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Noticed

Lisa LaFlamme was unceremoniously let go from CTV News this week. Photo: screenshot/CTV News

Many people are still talking about — and are rightfully outraged over — Lisa LaFlamme’s unfair and shocking departure from CTV last week. As some stories have reported, Michael Melling, vice-president, information at Bell Media, asked who gave LaFlamme permission to let her hair go grey. LaFlamme, like many people during the pandemic, couldn’t get to the salon for her regular colour appointment, so she grew out her natural grey instead. And it looks gorgeous.

Since I read those stories about LaFlamme and her grey hair, I’ve been thinking about my own grey hair and what I might eventually do with it. I started going grey when I was 11, thanks to vitiligo, an autoimmune disorder that causes white patches on your skin, including on your scalp, which then turn your hair grey. As you might imagine, going grey as a kid, and even in your 20s, is not a good time.

But when I turned 40 I started to care less about it, even though I still dye my hair and I’m almost 52. I colour my hair myself at home because it’s nice and easy (get it?), so it’s not a burden of money or time (I won’t say it looks like a salon job).

While I am very pro-aging gracefully, and I know people whose own grey hair looks fabulous, I am still reluctant to let my own hair go naturally grey and I am trying to figure out why — and why it matters to anyone.

The grey hair I have caused by the vitiligo are large streaks of snow white hair. There are spots of it in the back and the sides along my hairline. And I noticed in recent months the vitiligo is not done with me yet. I now have two new large streaks of white hair on the top of my head.

Still, I have other strands of grey, including hair at my temples, scattered over the front of my head. I’m guessing that is the natural grey hair of aging and it never really gets dyed properly. It still looks like highlights.

The last time I went to my salon, I spoke to my stylist about growing out the grey, and to my surprise, he said a lot of my hair is still my natural dark brown. He suggested I could go gracefully grey with the help of some bleach and/or all-over highlights, but he told me that would be a huge expense right now and it would be better to wait until about 90% of my hair is grey.

Or he suggested I could chop off all my hair in a pixie cut and grow it out that way. Of course, I could go free range and let it just grow out without any help from my stylist, but given what I know now about where the grey is located, I’d likely look like J. Jonah Jameson, the editor in chief at the Daily Bugle from Spiderman. Is that a look I want, or could pull off?

This week, and no doubt a response to LaFlamme’s firing, Dove Canada announced a Keep the Grey campaign on social media. In its Twitter post, Dove wrote:

Age is beautiful. Women should be able to do it on their own terms, without any consequences. Dove is donating $100,000 to Catalyst, a Canadian organization helping build inclusive workplaces for all women. Go grey with us, turn your profile picture greyscale and #KeepTheGrey

Dove has supported “real beauty” in its previous campaigns, although not without controversy. In 2017, Liz Conor with The Conversation wrote about some of Dove’s campaigns, including this one called Dove, real beauty, and the racist history of skin whitening. 

As Conor wrote, Dove “found itself in hot water” after it released a campaign in which a Black woman removes her dark-coloured top and appears to “transform” into a white woman; this did not go over well with people. Dove responded with a tweet that said: “An image we recently posted on Facebook missed the mark in representing women of color thoughtfully. We deeply regret the offense it caused.”

But that wasn’t enough. Conor wrote:

The company then followed up with a longer statement: “As a part of a campaign for Dove body wash, a three-second video clip was posted to the US Facebook page … It did not represent the diversity of real beauty which is something Dove is passionate about and is core to our beliefs, and it should not have happened.”

One has to ask, were the boys destined for Dove marketing kicking on at the pub instead of going to their History of Advertising lecture, the one with the 1884 Pears’ soap ad powerpoint? Jokes aside, Dove’s troubling ad buys into a racist history of seeing white skin as clean, and black skin as something to be cleansed.

Dove, you see, is connected with Unilever, which makes Fair and Lovely, a skin whitening product sold in 40 countries. Conor points out the issue behind Dove’s “real beauty” campaigns and what the company is really selling. (The term “real beauty” bothers me as much as “real women” does).

(Interestingly, there’s no cure for vitiligo, and skin whitening is one of the treatments offered to people with dark skin who have patches of vitiligo. You can’t add pigment to vitiligo patches, but you can remove pigment from unaffected skin, so the overall look is more even).

But back to the grey hair issue: women should grow out that grey if they want, and they certainly shouldn’t lose their jobs over it. Clearly, male anchors go grey, bald, and who knows what else from aging, and they keep their jobs forever, to the point where you wonder if they’re propped up in their chairs.

But I also think women should do whatever the hell they want with their hair. Dye it blue, pink, green, or multi-colour! Cut it or shave it off! It’s hair and it can be changed at any time! Who cares? Is telling women to grow out their grey just another way to tell women how to look?

And maybe I don’t want to go completely grey now because going grey at such a young age comes with bad memories.

Then I wonder does dying my hair all the time and covering that grey make me a tool of the patriarchy and the beauty industry? Or am I overthinking this all?

It’s a very grey issue, indeed.

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Government

City

Wednesday

Special Events Advisory Committee (Wednesday, 9:30am, online) — agenda

Heritage Advisory Committee (Wednesday, 3pm, online) — agenda

District Boundary Resident Review Panel (Wednesday, 3:30pm, City Hall) — agenda

Thursday

Special Meeting – Board of Police Commissioners (Thursday, 11am, online) — agenda

Transportation Standing Committee (Thursday, 1pm, online) — agenda

Province

No meetings


On campus

Saint Mary’s

Wednesday

No events

Thursday

Hamilton: In History & On Stage (Thursday, 7pm, online) — Shira Lurie will talk:

Join Halifax Public Libraries for a virtual conversation about Hamilton: An American Musical, history, and historical memory that will encourage you to think differently about the smash-hit stage phenomenon.


In the harbour

Halifax
05:30: One Majesty, container ship, sails from Fairview Cove for Dubai
06:00: Atlantic Sky, ro-ro container ship, arrives at Fairview Cove from Liverpool, England
06:00: Oceanex Sanderling, ro-ro container, arrives at Pier 36 from St. John’s
06:30: Nolhanava, ro-ro cargo, arrives at Fairview Cove from Saint-Pierre
07:00: Golden Diamond, bulker, arrives at anchorage for hull cleaning from Porto Trombetas, Brazil
08:30: MSC Aniello, container ship, sails from Pier 41 for sea
11:30: Oceanex Sanderling moves to Pier 41
11:30: ZIM Tarragona, container ship, sails from Pier 42 for New York
12:00: Happy Buccaneer, heavy load carrier, sails from anchorage for sea
13:00: Morning Lena, car carrier, sails from Autoport for sea
15:00: One Houston, container ship, arrives at Fairview Cove from Colombo, Sri Lanka
16:30: Atlantic Sky sails for Baltimore
18:30: Algoma Integrity, bulker, sails from Gold Bond for sea

Cape Breton
06:15: Zaandam, cruise ship with up to 1,718 passengers, arrives at Sydney Marine Terminal from Charlottetown, on a seven-day cruise from Montreal to Boston
12:00: Baie St.Paul, bulker, transits through the causeway to Aulds Cove quarry from Summerside
13:00: CSL Kajika, bulker, sails from Coal Pier (Sydney) for sea
16:30: Zaandam sails for Halifax
21:00: Crude Zephyrus, oil tanker, arrives at Point Tupper from Arzew, Algeria


Footnotes

A joke:

Me: When I die, I will look down on you.
My kid: Looking DOWN? If the bible is real, it’s very particular about these things.

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Suzanne Rent

Suzanne Rent is a writer, editor, and researcher. You can follow her on Twitter @Suzanne_Rent

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  1. In my first career I do not recall any person being promoted because of who they knew or sucking up.
    I remember one officer who was never promoted beyond the position he held. It was obvious that he was as high as he would go. Well run companies/organisations spot talent at an early stage and then steadily promote and test,always with an eye to the abilities and strengths/weaknesses of the individual.I expect a bonus will be given to a person who has met or exceeded agreed targets; or was unable to meet a target for reasons beyond her/his control
    I would give Tim a bonus because I have the impression that he is not, and never was, a 40 hour a week reporter – I think he is a reporter from when he wakes to when he sleeps – 24/7/365.

  2. Water Mason is dead on right about that 10% CMHC BS.
    Council should enact a policy (and so should the Province) that no publicly owned property of any kind should ever be sold without a full and transparent analysis of the highest and best use for common benefit. In most if not all instances, I would be willing to bet that selling it to a rich developer to make himself richer would NOT be at the top of the list. Environmental protect and true affordable housing probably would be top. For example the old St Pats property could have / should have gone to Habitat for Humanity for affordable housing, not a developer for massive profits.