1. It’s going to rain today
And CBC is on it. See here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. Imagine if those newsroom resources were put into, I dunno, maybe reporting that abortion is nearly illegal in New Brunswick?
2. Abortion is nearly illegal in New Brunswick
Good on CTV for at least acknowledging the issue, but the lack of access to abortion services in New Brunswick is the most-undercovered story in Canada. Alone among Canadian provinces, New Brunswick says abortion is not an “entitled service,” it is the only province that has the demeaning requirement that two physicians must approve an abortion, and the provincial Ministry of Health sends women seeking abortions to religiously affiliated anti-choice “counselling” organizations. Social media is awash with horrific stories about a woman dying of brain cancer being denied an abortion, a Catholic doctor refusing to prescribe birth control, and simply the social stigma associated with seeking reproductive health in the province. These stories should be looked into by skilled reporters but, alas, they’re all on duty covering an outport lobsterman tying up his traps before a weak tropical storm arrives.
3. Non-profits strategize over St. Pat’s-Alexandra school
4. Workplace safety
The province has created a new position for a prosecutor to focus on workplace safety investigations, and hired Alex Keaveny for the job.
5. Fish farms
A review panel calls for revising the rules around fish farms.
6. Looking for women
The Canadian agencies that regulate companies traded on the stock market, including the Nova Scotian Securities Commission, is proposing a new rule that would require corporations “to make disclosure regarding the representation of women on their boards and in their executive officer positions.” There’s no proposal to require actually appointing more women to the positions, but counting them is a good first step. And, neither here nor there, but it’s ridiculous that Nova Scotia has its own securities commission; these things should’ve been amalgamated nationally decades ago.
1. Foreign fish plant workers
The always erudite Rachel Brighton looks at the issue of temporary foreign workers at fish plants. I think the conversation is missing the larger picture, however: while plant workers are paid crap wages and lobster fishers get a measly three bucks a pound, the execs and owners are making out like bandits. Clearwater’s, John Risley, for example, is a billionaire. I was at the property office yesterday researching something else, but out of idle curiosity I looked up Risley’s holdings. He owns Big Gooseberry and Little Gooseberry, two islands connected by a causeway off the coast near Chester, assessed at just over $3 million. I’m sure Risley is a decent enough guy, a hard worker, and cleverly earned his fortune, but there’s something fundamentally wrong with the industry when one man makes billions and the pay for the thousands of people actually catching and processing the product is a pittance.
2. Darce’s dementia
Darce Fardy continues to chronicle his dementia and the struggles that come with it in his Chronicle Herald column. A seasoned journalist, Fardy became the province’s freedom of information review officer, and then formed the Right to Know Coalition. He’s done more than anyone to bring better public access to Nova Scotia government, although the bureaucracy has resisted at every step. There’s still a long, long way to go on the freedom of information front, but Fardy is still the expert, and the inspiration for continuing the fight. Besides all that, he’s a great guy.
Gillian Wesley and Drew Moore’s blog The Local Traveller suggests various trips around Nova Scotia. Their most recent post looks at Smugglers Cove.
In the harbour
(Click on vessel names to see pictures and more information about the ships.)
Arcadian, oil/chemical tanker, St John’s to Anchor
Oceanex Sanderling, ro-ro cargo, Saint John to Autoport
Thorco Celebration, general cargo, Gibralter to Anchor
Zim Texas, container ship, Tarragona, Spain (near Barcelona) to Anchor
Maersk Palermo, container ship, Montreal to Halterm Pier 42
Iris Ace, vehicles carrier, Autoport to Sea
Government & Campus
Closed due to the apocalypse.
In late February, the Halifax Regional Police Department announced it had asked the Service de police de la Ville de Quebec to undertake an “operational review” of the Halifax police investigation into the death of Holly Bartlett, the 31-year-old woman who was found dying under the MacKay Bridge in 2010. That review, the police said in February, would “take approximately two months to complete.” Two months later, when I got back from vacation in late April, I called and asked about the review; I was told that it would be another month. In May I called again, and was told it would be late June. This week I called yet again to ask about it, and was told that the Quebec cops are consumed with operations related to the Festival d’été de Québec, expecting riots and so forth, so the Bartlett investigation is delayed yet again. The repeated delays must be a stress for Holly’s family and friends.