Three photos: a Black man in a snazzy black suit and bowtie holding a guitar. A sign, part of which reads "Our Mill". An elderly woman in a wheelchair, with her back to us, resting in a sunny place.

Welcome to Weekend File, where you’ll find links to all the articles you might have missed last week. Please note: there were no articles on Monday, April 18. Jump to sections in this article:


Sunday, April 17

A brass set of scales on a wooden table, with a blurry courtroom in the background.

Turmoil at the Nova Scotia Barristers Society, Take 32

Stephen Kimber had the latest on the strife at the Nova Scotia Barristers Society, specifically a report that says, among many things, “some council members are so concerned with being heard that they cannot listen.” The report was written by Paula Minnikin from a review she started last summer. Kimber wrote, “Minnikin’s review apparently “underlines key disconnects” and identifies “questionable conduct and other strife” while describing a “cultural mismatch between public lawyers and private lawyers,” citing “a pervasive lack of trust” within the council.”

Tuesday, April 19

a memorial on church steps with red paper hearts and tulipsMorning File: It’s been 2 years since the mass murders, and we still haven’t collectively mourned

Tim Bousquet looked back at the what’s happened — or not happened — over the last two years since the mass murders. While the Mass Casual Commission is underway now, there are still many questions to be answered. But Bousquet said we also haven’t collectively mourned. He wondered if a monument was in order, or if the inquiry would become a platform for mourning, writing, ” I perceive that there’s an expectation that the inquiry will provide the avenue for public grieving and mourning, and this unsettles me.”

Wednesday, April 20

1. Survey to identify and understand gaps in dementia care in Nova Scotia

Yvette d’Entremont interviewed Nova Scotia Health neuropsychologist Dr. Paula McLaughlin, one of the researchers behind a new study to better understand the gaps in dementia care. McLaughlin told d’Entremont the study is looking for input from people with dementia who are living at home, as well as from their family members/caregivers and their health care professionals. “Without this information, we can’t really change anything or improve that access to services without really knowing truly where the gaps are,” McLaughlin said.

2. Northern Pulp says it is ‘insolvent’ and can’t pay its pension obligations, but it’s got plenty of cash to bankroll legal assaults on Nova Scotia’s government and laws

Northern Pulp and six of its affiliates are heading to British Columbia Supreme Court this month, where they will ask for, and likely get, another extension of the creditor relief they’ve been afforded under the federal Companies Creditor Arrangement Act. As Joan Baxter reported here, Northern Pulp declared itself insolvent in June 2020, but somehow has found the cash for PR campaigns and legal battles. Baxter did this in-depth look into all of it.

3. The Coast sold to B.C.-based media group

The Coast, Halifax’s former print alt-weekly, announced it had been sold to a B.C.-based media company Overstory Media Group. Zane Woodford had this report on the sale, plus a bit on The Coast’s new owners.

4. Morning File: Surgery backlogs: health care delayed is health care denied

Ethan Lycan-Lang recalled a surgery he had done in a private clinic, after languishing on a wait list for too long. He wrote about what those surgery backlogs mean, even for those waiting for non-urgent surgeries. “Delaying these operations force people to live with unnecessary pain, discomfort, and debilitations each day, and can eventually turn minor problems into major ones,” he wrote. Also, he got nostalgic for the old print version of The Coast.

5. Talk back and taking back the stage for the Singing Miner of Springhill

Evelyn C. White had this amazing story of the legacy of Maurice Ruddick, the “singing miner” who kept up the spirits of his fellow miners after they were trapped underground in the Springhill mining disaster of October 1958. White wrote about Ruddick before, but told his story again here, after she joined Jeremiah Sparks on stage during a “Talk Back” session at Neptune’s production of Beneath Springhill in which Sparks was playing Ruddick. And then, a white man in the audience interrupted the talk …

6. Halifax auditor general concerned about city’s risk assessment for big projects

Zane Woodford was at Halifax regional council’s Audit and Finance Standing Committee where Halifax’s auditor general Evangeline Colman-Sadd presented a follow-up report looking at the municipality’s progress in implementing 11 recommendations from three audits in fiscal 2019-2020. As Woodford reported, of those 11 recommendations, seven were implemented. That’s 64%. “This is below the level that we expect for audits that were released two years ago,” Colman-Sadd said in the meeting.

Thursday, April 21

1. The Tideline, Episode 76: OutFest

OutFest, the city’s first dedicated queer theatre festival in a few years, starts on April 26. Isaac Mulè, the artistic director with Page1 Theatre, which produces the event, joined Tara Thorne to talk about this year’s program and chat about the festival’s origins in Kitchener, ONT. Theatre maker Katie Clarke also joined in to dig into Can You Remember How We Got Here, the one-person show they wrote and are starring in (maybe).

2. Morning File: Tell me more about yourself: the limits of job interviews

Suzanne Rent looked at the good and bad of job interviews ⁠— mostly the bad, though ⁠— and how you should never go to HR to get a job because their job is to get rid of you. She also chatted with Hayley Frail, a student at University of King’s College, who started the Before It’s Gone Halifax project to catalogue heritage buildings in the city before they’re torn down.

3. Tenants evicted from rundown Bedford Highway hotel; landlord says it’s not a renoviction

Bluenose Inn and Suites on the Bedford Highway is closing down, and tenants were told to move out. A social worker at Dalhousie Legal Aid told Zane Woodford the landlord is ignoring rules around renovictions. Woodford also spoke with a tenant who found a place, although she may not be able to afford the rent. And he spoke with the landlord, too, who said, “the place is not habitable any longer, and there’s not much I can do while there’s people living there.”

a tent and a wooden shelter in a muddy park on a winter day4. Halifax councillors cool to decriminalizing sheltering in parks

Advocates made a presentation to Halifax regional council’s Community Planning and Economic Development Committee’s meeting and asked councillors to allow camping in municipal parks using Bylaw P-600. Zane Woodford was there, too, and reported here on what councillors had to say about the bylaw.

5. Dalhousie researcher studying how pandemic impacted violence against women services

Dalhousie researcher Alexa Yakubovich is working on a project that will look at how the COVID-19 pandemic affected services for women experiencing violence. Yvette d’Entremont spoke with Yakubovich about the project, which will look at the impacts on those services in N.S., N.B., and P.E.I. and said the results of the study could help improve those services long- term.

Friday, April 22

1. Get outside: national nature prescription program launches in the Maritimes

On Friday, national nature prescription program PaRx (Parks Prescriptions) officially launched in the Maritimes. Yvette d’Entremont reported on the project, which will mean health professionals in all three provinces can now formally prescribe nature to their patients. She spoke with Dalhousie University professor and practicing registered clinical psychologist Dr. Shannon Johnson about the connection between nature and our health. So, as d’Entremont wrote, “stop and smell the roses,” because it’s good for your health.

2. Morning File: It’s OK to get rid of books. Really.

Philip Moscovitch looked at the pros and cons of getting rid of books. His own love of books started with his father, who Moscovitch said collected “thousands and thousands of books.” That collection inspired Moscovitch’s own love of books, too. Moscovitch started giving some of his own books away, too, but not all of them. He wrote, “Just as I finished writing this, a pile of stuff slid off the edge of my desk, including my copy of How To Make Extra Profits from Taxidermy. Not giving that one away.”

From our archives

A young boy wearing a skating boarding helmet

Philip Moscovitch is often out in nature. The observant Moscovitch, who seems to find stories wherever he goes, wrote about the freedom and fun kids find when they’re camping in this Morning File from July 2020. It was the first summer of the pandemic and Moscovitch and his partner were camping near the water, close to an access path. Moscovitch wrote: “As I watched two kids bombing down that hill on bikes (including two on one bike), I turned to my partner and said, ‘They’re like 70s kids.’ My partner said that thanks to the pandemic ‘they’re all like 70s kids now.’” Another good story Moscovitch wrote about getting back to nature was this one, Black to nature, about the lack of diversity and of representations of diverse populations enjoying the great outdoors.

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

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