Wednesday, March 31, 2010



Editorial - Wishing Doesn’t Make It Law -

Editorial - Wishing Doesn’t Make It Law -

Stadium Project Full Steam Ahead

March 31, 2010

$137.5 Million to be Invested, Construction Slated for this Summer, Opening 2012 CFL Season
The provincial government is distributing this news release on behalf of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, the City of Winnipeg, the University of Manitoba and the Government of Manitoba.
Winnipeg, Manitoba, March 31, 2010 – Premier Greg Selinger and Mayor Sam Katz today joined Ken Hildahl, Chair, Board of Directors of the Winnipeg Football Club, David Asper, Executive Chairman of Creswin Properties Inc. and University of Manitoba President, Dr. David Barnard to announce a plan to accelerate construction of a new community-owned football stadium at the University of Manitoba.
Beginning this summer, Creswin will construct the $115 million facility with an opening in time for the 2012 CFL and Bison football seasons. An additional $22.5 million will be invested in fitness facilities at the University of Manitoba.
The Province will provide bridge financing, which will be fully repaid by Creswin as part of the transfer of team ownership. This financing will be secured through property taxes generated from the new retail development on the site of the existing stadium, subject to City Council approval. The Winnipeg Football Club will support the bridge financing through capital revenue sources at the new stadium such as naming rights and suite licenses.
The bridge financing plan supports all previous agreements including the Community Interest Agreement (CIA) which guarantees community ownership of the stadium and the team's home in Winnipeg, in perpetuity, and the Access Procedure Agreement to ensure community and university student use of the new stadium.
“This plan provides the foundation that is needed to move this project forward,” said Premier Selinger. “Building the stadium now significantly reduces the long term cost, creates an immediate stimulus for our economy, and provides a lasting asset for the university and the community .”
As originally proposed, the new stadium will include 33,000 seats (expandable to 40,000+), overhead protection for 80% of fans, enhanced concessions and washrooms, 40 private suites, a permanent Hall of Fame and an inflatable bubble for use in winter months.
“Bomber fans have let us know loud and clear that it’s time this project be brought to fruition,” said Mayor Katz. “I believe this investment will have a major positive impact on our city and this plan provides us with the revenues we need to make it happen.”
“The development of retail on our existing site and our agreement with Creswin Properties will provide the economic engine to sustain the Winnipeg Blue Bombers into the future,” said Ken Hildahl.

“Our mission from day one,” said David Asper, “has been to create a new stadium that deals directly and completely with making it a place where the fans can enjoy the games with modern and comfortable amenities. We’ve never wavered from the goal and I’m happy to say that, with today’s announcement, Bomber and Bison fans are going to get what they have long deserved.”
The University of Manitoba also continues with its original plan to construct a new fitness centre on campus, supported by $15 million from the Government of Canada and $5.0 million from the Province. Subject to City Council approval, the City will provide $2.5 million for the fitness centre, which will be available to students and the general public.
“The new stadium development continues to be an important and exciting development at the University of Manitoba,” said Barnard. “I look forward to being at the opening kick-offs of the first Bison and Bomber games there in 2012.”

The total project at the University of Manitoba will create an estimated 2,425 person-years of employment and $19.6 million in provincial tax revenues from construction.

“It’s exciting news that all the parties are coming together to build what will become the home of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, one of our oldest and proudest franchises,” said CFL Commissioner, Mark Cohon. “The timing is very appropriate. The Bombers are celebrating their 80th anniversary, and the stadium is expected to be ready for 2012, when football fans across Canada will celebrate our 100th Grey Cup game. This is a display of confidence in the future of our league and the communities in which our teams play.”


March 31, 2010
Funding Nearly Triples Since 2007 for Language and Settlement Services: Howard

Newly arrived Manitobans to Brandon and the Westman region will benefit from $260,000 in additional funding for settlement services and adult language training, Labour and Immigration Minister Jennifer Howard announced today.
“We recognize that Westman communities have seen tremendous growth in immigration and this increase in funding ensures that new Manitobans will continue to have access to the many settlement services available,” said Howard.
The new funding will bring the total support from Manitoba Labour and Immigration and Citizenship and Immigration Canada to nearly $1.7 million for the Westman region, a 19 per cent increase over last year. Since 2007, funding for settlement and language training programming in the Westman region has nearly tripled.
Settlement, integration and language-training services being funded include:
· day and evening adult language training in Brandon, English for bank tellers and trades, language labs, tutoring and evening classes in Dauphin, Russell, Binscarth, and Roblin, offered by Assiniboine Community College;
· adult language training in the workplace and job-specific language training provided by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union in partnership with Manitoba Labour and Immigration and Maple Leaf Foods; and
· co-ordinated and integrated programming offered by Westman Immigrant Services including settlement assistance and orientation on living in Manitoba, adult language training classes, regional language assessment and referral to adult language training classes, volunteer and literacy support programs, referrals to employment supports and training for interpreters.

“We are committed to helping immigrants and refugees settle, work and succeed in Manitoba,” said Howard. “The settlement services and language training programs being funded provide new Manitobans with the tools they need to thrive in the social and economic life of Manitoba.”

Immigration to Brandon has increased from 81 arrivals in 2003 to approximately 1,150 arrivals in 2009, primarily due to the Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program, said Howard. Since 2003, Brandon has received over 3,000 newcomers. In 2009, over 26 per cent of all immigrants settled in Manitoba communities outside of Winnipeg.

- 30 -

Monday, March 29, 2010


Gimli, Manitoba, March 26, 2010—Starting and running a business in the Rural Municipality of Gimli just became easier thanks to BizPaL, a new online business permit and licence service that saves time spent on paperwork and helps entrepreneurs start up faster.
Today, the Honourable Peter Bjornson, Manitoba Minister of Entrepreneurship, Training and Trade, together with James Bezan, Member of Parliament for Selkirk–Interlake, on behalf of the Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism), and Tammy Axelsson, Mayor of the Rural Municipality of Gimli, welcomed the launch of BizPaL in Gimli.
BizPaL is an innovative service that provides entrepreneurs with simplified access to the information on the permits and licences they need to establish and run their businesses. This unique partnership among federal, provincial, territorial, regional and local governments is designed to cut through the paperwork burden and red tape that small business owners encounter. The BizPaL service in Gimli was developed by the Rural Municipality of Gimli, the Province of Manitoba and the Government of Canada.
“BizPaL helps reduce the burden of red tape on business and I am pleased that entrepreneurs in the Rural Municipality of Gimli have access to the service,” said Minister Bjornson. “By using BizPaL, entrepreneurs will spend less time searching for, understanding and complying with regulatory requirements from three levels of government and more time conducting business.”
“Through Canada’s Economic Action Plan, our government is committed to Canada’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by improving access to financing and cutting the red tape businesses face every day,” said Mr. Bezan. “BizPaL is a great example of the government’s hard work to support SMEs across Canada as they innovate, create jobs and generate wealth in our communities.”
“BizPaL is a unique partnership with all levels of government and provides essential support to our local existing and upcoming entrepreneurs,” said Mayor Axelsson. “It will also help ensure the continuous progress of our community’s economic development.”

“The Province of Manitoba’s continuing support for the expansion of BizPaL is welcomed by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business,” said Mr. Shannon Martin, Director of Provincial Affairs, Manitoba. “With today’s announcement, the Rural Municipality of Gimli has taken an important step in streamlining processes and removing roadblocks that entrepreneurs face.”
Area business owners and entrepreneurs can access the service by visiting the Rural Municipality of Gimli website ( or the Government of Manitoba website ( Province is looking forward to expanding BizPaL to other areas of Manitoba over the next year.
Visit the BizPaL website ( for additional information and access to the websites of participating partners.

Scientists Say F.D.A. Ignored Radiation Warnings -

CT scans appears to be bad for colon cancer patients.

Scientists Say F.D.A. Ignored Radiation Warnings -

Are You Afraid to Plan for Your Own Death? | | AlterNet

Are you tired of the rising cost to bury your loved ones? Is it creating a lot of stress, perhaps you can go back to the old ways where we took care of our deaths in a more loving and involved way rather than the sterile last rites of funeral parlours. Coffins can be made by carpenters in a day or two. Funerals do not have to cost tens of thousands of dollars except of course you want to keep out with the Joneses and feed your own egos. This is an interesting article that everyone should read because death is the one thing we are certain of. Everyone will die one day.

Are You Afraid to Plan for Your Own Death? AlterNet

The 10 Most Outrageous Right-Wing Freakouts Over the Health Care Bill | | AlterNet

The 10 Most Outrageous Right-Wing Freakouts Over the Health Care Bill AlterNet

Social Media Activism: Adding to the Haitian narrative « SpeakEasy

Social Media Activism: Adding to the Haitian narrative « SpeakEasy

Niqab ban - The tyranny of political racism - Winnipeg Woman Speaks Out!

Niqab ban - The tyranny of political racism

By Shahina Siddiqui

I have been reading in horror and sometimes with nervous laughter the many tirades against the face veil that a tiny number of Canadian Muslim women wear in public. The arguments against the niqab range all the way from the despicable to the ridiculous. Read the blogs or comments in major national and local papers in Canada and you would think that we live in the most bigoted, intolerant nation in the world. Of course that is not the case and I am encouraged by the voices of reason however fewer and far between.
As a Muslim woman and spiritual counsellor I see the pain ,anguish and the sheer paralyzing fear that Muslim Canadian women are feeling. We have been dismissed, stigmatized and relegated to the position of a sub citizen. As one young woman stated to me “I do not wear a veil but this attack is very personal, under the guise of “empowering” us they have totally shredded our confidence.” What people are wilfully ignoring is that Muslim women are human beings and deserve to be treated with dignity regardless of whether we agree with their choices or not.

We must ask why is this woman in Quebec, a mother of three being put through this agonizing public lynching for exercising her right as she understands it, to practice her religion as she sees fit and why is she being accosted for exercising her right to file a grievance through a government agency.

Imagine what her children must be feeling to see their mother denied the right to an education, not for any crime she has committed but for the way she dresses. The pain we have inflicted on this family is unforgiveable. Furthermore we should be ashamed on how we have been bullying and demonizing this woman in particular and Muslim women in general almost on a regular basis. It is almost as if Canada has declared war on its Muslim women. Now we have Bill 94 in the Quebec legislature essentially barring veiled women from public services.
In Canada all citizens have the right to personal freedom that does not infringe on another’s right. However when it comes to Muslim women we have convinced ourselves that she is a victim of her husband’s dominance and so we do not believe her when she says “this is my choice.” What a cunning circular web we weave. First we discredit her as an intellectual being, ridicule her as a free thinking human being, demonize her for practicing her faith and then smugly claim to be emancipating her.

As for the argument that some women are forced by their male guardians to wear the niqab, I am sure there are such cases. However the solution being offered by some to ban the niqab is to banish these women to a life of house arrest. The Canadian response should be to respectfully empower them through social interaction and education.

The claim that to teach language the teacher needs to see her mouth is to state that blind people cannot teach or learn language and that the on-line language classes are bogus. If the issue is pronunciation, then guess what, we all have an accent. Ask someone from France if they approve of Quebec French.

As per the issues regarding veil being a security threat, well how many niqab trotting women have held up banks? Note should be taken that women who wear niqab are also obligated for necessity and security and identification purposes to remove their niqab, and they do. Does a class room setting pose such a necessity is an issue that could be mediated with the help of Muslim community leaders and the student as part of the solution. Rather the school and Quebec politicians chose to turn this into a fight against “us” and “them.” Why?

Unfortunately the frenzy around this whole issue is taking on Islamophobic undertones. The holier than thou slogans being chanted by so called pure Canadians of “our values are better then there’s “ has serious social consequences. What law gives us the right to impose our biases, transfer our ignorance and juxtapose our fears on these women? Furthermore the argument based on comparisons being drawn between some Muslim countries and Canada is also a red herring. Do we really want to model Canada based on the standards of human rights in Egypt or Afghanistan? We claim to be better than the Taliban because we are not forcing women on what to wear and so we would rather tell them what not to wear. What hypocrisy!
Frankly this outrage is not about a piece of cloth on my face or head, it is about what I believe and the life style I have chosen. It is about my rejection to being exploited for my physiology, my refusal to fit in a frame society imposes on me and my courage to demand my right as a Canadian. For this we are being punished by depriving us of our basic human right to choose.

Unfortunately it is becoming socially acceptable to belittle Muslim women to treat them as subhuman and to make political gains at their expense, but this is not something to be proud of or to celebrate. Au contraire it is time to mourn the Canada we may be losing
Shahina Siddiqui

President/Executive Director
Islamic Social Services Association Inc.-Canada
416 McDermot Ave.
Winnipeg Manitoba

(Phone) 204-944-1560

(Fax) 204-944-8712
Toll free phone line 1-866-239-ISSA

Winnipegger's first hand account of the Haitian situation

This is Muhoza echoeing from Port au Prince, Haiti. Friends, Words cannot really describe the devastation in this poor country! I have been in many countries, have seen countries devasted by wars, and conflict, but nothing can be compared to what the quake has done here. I wonder if this country will ever be rebuild again, even though the seems to be giving some glimpse of hope to the locals whose houses have been destroyed.

I have spent most of my time in rural area in the locality of Bainet, village of Begin where I was mostly working with the youth and the local community leaders for my project needs assessment. I have been all to distribute some livestock to vulnerable families, send to school about 15 kids from poor families who could not afford school fees, distribute sports equipments to at least 5 groups (teams) who really appreaciated so much the pleasure of having a football, and wearing for the very first team sports uniform (les mayots).

For most of the hundreds of bored youth who had returned in their villages from the destroyed capitals having sports equipments to play in the villages was just a God giving thing. It gave them something to do, and an exciting environment after all the stresses and trauma they had experienced. The same feeling of gratitude was also expressed by parents who at least can see their youth happy and not threatening to go back to the city which no longer has a place for them.

While in P.A.P I also have been working with the youth. Due to lack of proper transportation I have not been able to go internet cafe as I wanted. The local transportation system here is awful.

As to whether there the city will be rebuilt, I am very skeptical given not only the track record of the where they have intervened, but also when I observe how the so called expatriates (westerners) working for bigger NGOs are living and doing very little compared to their means and their mission.Don`t get me wrong, whatever is being done is appreaciated and was badly needed. But I believe that much more can be done with the means in place if the Haves could only reprioritize their value system.

I have witnessed many organisations stocking tones of food, and supplies for weeks while giving as little as possible to only selected few like enough to get the sporadic available help.

I have been amazed at how these major NGOs are using the locals as volunteers and providing food as pay for the work done, instead of giving them jobs to sustain their families. But, on the other hand, an influx of westerners keep outpouring into Port-au Prince as workers. One wonders why westerners would be hired to be paid a tremendous amount of money as (expatriate) to come and distribute food, supplies or do construction work) that thousands of Haitians can do. Oops, so I am hearing. Yet, the corrupt officials are the ones being given shared contracts of millions of dollars.

With my 10 years in the field of community development, I still have not really managed to understand the morals and the logics behind the system of the donor community. When will real justice, equity, equality of opportunity and lack of hypocrisy will be finally conquered by the simple logics of Justice!!!!

However, I must say how I was impressed by Haitian people´s resiliency despite all the odds again them. To be honest, Haiti is a failed state. That might sound politically incorrect, but that is my assessment. Despite the devastation of the earthquake, you can still see that the leadership of the country is and has been quite non existing to say the least.

The people on the other hand, are doing the best with the little, or rather nothing. You can see signs of life as people struggle to meet their needs through small street businesses, or working in shops taking the risks of staying indoor in a country where the majority of people sleep outside in the road. Even those whose houses were not destroyed many of them are still traumatized and prefer sleeping outside in tents for fear of having their houses collapsing over them too.
I urge everyone to pray for this country. Only God can uplift it from its misery, and usher.
Oh! How I really appreaciate living in Canada!!! Sometimes, it is important to leave Canada to really appreaciate its value. For anyone who has and will contribute to my life in Canada, I remain forever grateful and indebted to what this country of milk and honey has to offer its people, I, included!

Pray for Haitian people as you count for your blessings as Canadians


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Province of Manitoba: News Releases

Province of Manitoba: News Releases


March 25, 2010
Statistics Canada says Fourth-quarter Growth is Third Best in Country
Manitoba has achieved its best population growth rate in nearly 40 years, Entrepreneurship, Training and Trade Minister Peter Bjornson announced today.
“People from around the globe are clearly learning that Manitoba is a great place to live, work and raise a family,” Bjornson said.
According to Statistics Canada, Manitoba’s population reached 1,229,000 people in 2009, an increase of 16,400 people over the previous year.
Bjornson said Manitoba’s population increase last year of 1.36 per cent last year is the best since 1971 and builds on a decade-long trend of positive population growth.
In the past 10 years, Manitoba has grown by nearly 90,000 people. That is roughly equivalent to the populations of Brandon, Thompson, Dauphin, and Portage la Prairie combined and more than double the population increase over the previous decade.
In addition, Manitoba’s fourth-quarter growth rate of 0.23 per cent was the third-best provincial growth rate in the country and better than the national average of 0.17 per cent.
Much of the population increase has been driven by immigration from other countries, due in a large part to the success of Manitoba’s Provincial Nominee Program, the minister said.
“Our Provincial Nominee Program is ensuring that people from around the world can bring their skills to our great province and make it even better,” said Bjornson.

Kombucha Tea Attracts a Following and Doubters -

Kombucha, the once touted elixir of life is making the rounds again. Check it out. I once used to brew this tea and I must say I loved it but you have got to keep doing it all the time and my glass pot got broken. I have to find another one.
Kombucha Tea Attracts a Following and Doubters -

Kombucha Tea Attracts a Following and Doubters -

Kombucha, the once touted elixir of life is making the rounds again. Check it out. I once used to brew this tea and I must say I loved it but you have got to keep doing it all the time and my glass pot got broken. I have to find another one.
Kombucha Tea Attracts a Following and Doubters -

After Health Vote, Threats on Democrats -

It's beginning to feel a little like the 60's - Canadian university students have shut out right winger, sharp-shooter, Ann Coulter calling her message too racist.  She might be racist but deserves to be heard by those who want to hear her. That is what democracy is all about. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion.

The tea-partyers who now have morphed into a terrorist group reminds us of the those who did the lynching in the US - not a nice memory but all part of the 60's.  This time we have to make sure that rule of law works for everyone and that democracy is prevailed.
Interesting that Clarence Thomas, black Supreme Court member and his wife are among the tea-partyers, didn't he say he hated blacks and didn't like black women? And I thought Anita Hill was making that up

The world, Americans and Canadians must stand firm against violence that threatens the democratic process. There is no need for more lynching and inciting people to riot for a cause. All that Barack Obama is trying to do is to take care of the most needy in America and that could be you one day - what's wrong with that.

After Health Vote, Threats on Democrats -

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


March 24, 2010

Additional safeguards for the use of the prescription narcotic OxyContin were announced today by Healthy Living, Youth and Seniors Minister Jim Rondeau.

“We know that it is important for physicians to have OxyContin as part of their arsenal when treating a patient who has pain that is difficult to control, but when used outside of a physician’s direction, it can be harmful or even lethal,” said Rondeau. “So, while ensuring appropriate access for those who need it, we have to do everything we can to facilitate appropriate use.”
The comprehensive approach includes moving OxyContin to part three of the Provincial Drug Program Formulary, an education campaign and funding training to facilitate an increase in the number of physicians with a methadone licence. These actions are based on the recommendations of an expert working group made up of physicians with varying areas of expertise, representatives from addictions treatment organizations, Manitoba Justice, the Manitoba College of Physicians and Surgeons and the Manitoba Pharmaceutical Association, as well as Manitoba Health.

OxyContin is a form of opioid. Tolerance develops fairly rapidly to opioids, making higher doses necessary to maintain the intensity of their effect. They are highly addictive and misuse can result in dependence. OxyContin has been known to be illegally obtained, sold on the street and abused.

The Provincial Drug Program Formulary consists of three parts with an increasing number of controls from part one to part three. Effective March 26, OxyContin will be moved to part three. This change introduces specific criteria that restrict benefits to individuals who have pain related to cancer or other chronic conditions and have a history of being unable to tolerate or receive an adequate response to other medications. In these cases, physicians will need to contact the Exception Drug Status Office at Manitoba Health for prior approval of coverage through pharmacare. The new procedure is effective March 26for all new prescriptions. For patients already receiving benefit coverage for OxyContin, there is a two-month grace period. Their physicians must seek approval, where prescribed use meets the new criteria, by May 26.

These changes will be in addition to existing controls already in place such as the Manitoba Prescribing Practices Program used to monitor and control prescribing and dispensing of restricted drugs.

An education campaign aimed at patients being prescribed OxyContin, as well as the general public, is being developed to increase understanding of the dangers that misuse of OxyContin can cause. Posters and pamphlets will be distributed to medical clinics and pharmacies across the province.

As part of the overall strategy, building capacity to provide methadone treatment for people addicted to OxyContin is being supported. Funding for the training of community-based physicians in methadone treatment will facilitate an increase in the number of physicians who are licensed and trained to administer methadone as a form of treatment for people addicted to OxyContin. Both classroom instruction and clinical training are required in order to obtain a methadone licence.

“We know there are no easy answers when it comes to drug misuse,” added Rondeau. “But today we are taking important steps that we believe will reduce future incidence of dependence on a prescription medication known to be misused.”

Statscan finds widespread vitamin D deficiency in Canadians - The Globe and Mail

Statscan finds widespread vitamin D deficiency in Canadians - The Globe and Mail

Upcoming Event - Walk to stop human trafficking

Walk to Stop

Human Trafficking

Event Details:

Date: May 8, 2010

Time: 12:00pm

Where: Walk begins at the Manitoba Legislature.

What: Join a broad spectrum of faiths, cultures, and organizations to help raise awareness about the modern day slave trade that exists today in Canada. Featured speakers include MP Joy Smith and Grand Chief Ron Evans.

Contact: Leanne at or (204) 984-6322.

 Canada is considered a destination, transit and source country for victims of human trafficking.

 Average age of entry into the sex trade in Canada—12-14 years old.

 About 800-1200 people trafficked to Canada every year.

 First Nations youth are at greatest risk of being trafficked—many are missing.

 Most victims in Canada are under the age of eighteen.

 Traffickers can make $1000’s a day selling a child for sex.

As a former British colony, Canada abolished slavery over 200 years ago. However Canadians still buy and sell human victims every day in Canada.
I am writing today to invite you to an exciting event that I am hosting in Winnipeg. On Saturday May 8th, 2010 at 12:00pm I will be leading a 30 minute walk through downtown Winnipeg to raise awareness of human trafficking in Canada.

The walk will begin and end at the Manitoba Legislature, and will be followed by brief remarks from featured speakers including myself and Grand Chief Ron Evans.

I very much hope that you will walk with me on May 8th. Together we will show that Canadians will not tolerate this horrendous crime! I encourage you to spread this invitation to your friends, co-workers and family. I have also attached a "Walk to Stop Human Trafficking" flyer to this email. If you would like more information or wish to confirm your attendance, please contact Leanne Fraser at 204-984-6322 or email
Joy SmithMember of Parliament
Kildonan - St. Paul

CBC News - Money - Investors worry after financial 'guru' kills self

I often ask myself  why good, intelligent people get duped the way they are getting duped left, right and centre? Is it greed, thinking that they can get something for nothing, stereotyping people to their disadvantage? or plain naieve?  I believe it is all of that.
Mother always told me if something sounds too good to be true, go with your gut instinct, it is not true.
I also get frustrated when I hear people say, he was a respectable man, you never thought he would do something like this? These so called respectable people are exactly the ones who you have to watch. Because they dress like decent men and women does not make them decent people, not subject to the same temptation as the poor man in the street. In fact they have a greater temptation to steal to maintain the fake highfalutin lifestyle your money has got them accustomed to. They would lie and cheat to be show offs with other  people's money.
When it comes to one's hard earned savings, one should do do diligence and check and double check what one is being told. When would people learn that you do not just give your money away and folk your arms and hope to make millions. Your greed will make you a sucker every time. Use your common sense - who out there could guarantee you returns on your investment that no one else can? Society and that includes all of us pay for these avoidable mistakes people make. That's not fair.

CBC News - Money - Investors worry after financial 'guru' kills self

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Filipino community launches Elder Abuse Progrect

The Knights of Rizal, Winnipeg Chapter  Inc. and the Manitoba Association of Filipino-Canadian Teachers Inc. held a press conference on March 19, 2010 at the Philippine Canadian Cultural Centre, to announce the launch of its most recent project Innolvative Cultural Approaches in the Prevention of  Elder Abuse followed by a sumptuous reception.
    There were representatives of the federal and provincial governments who brought greetings  on behalf of their respective governments and congratulated the Filipino community for bringing this dark subject to light.
"Elder abuse is an invisible issue and we all have to take the responsibility to end the abuse" said Hon. Jim Rondeau, Minister for Healthy Living, Youth and Seniors. "We need to make sure that when people get old they remain healthy ," he added and called on the community to be the ambassadors of the government and take care of the seniors.
  Dr, Rey Pagtakhan, Knight of Rizal Regional Advisor,said the workshops that will be held will help us to understand why abuse occurs in certain households and not in others.
  "One case of abuse is one too many and we need to address it", he said.

The Caribbean Community is determined to keep its Community Centre Open

The Council of Caribbean Organizations of Manitoba (CCOM), the umbrella organization of the Caribbean Islands' cultural organizations, called a meeting last evening to discuss the future of their Cultural Centre on 1100 Fife Street which they acquired in 2008.

The centre has faced some financial setbacks in the face of the current recession as well as the sudden withdrawal of an offer to purchase the building which caused CCOM to incur further losses in terms of putting out dollars to rent another space while having to deal with the mortgage on the current building.

In true community spirit the Caribbean people and organizations came to the rescue of CCOM and helped to bail in out of its financial predicament. The organization managed to sublet the rented space and is now focussed on finding ways to keep the current Centre functional and solvent.

An interim management committee headed by Margaret Strachan, CCOM's Chair, has been struck to deal with the emergency situation. An election will be held at a later date to put a permanent Committee in place.

The community members present praised the efforts of Margaret Strachan, to keep the Centre open.

The meeting resolved to develop an aggressive plan to keep the Centre open as the pride of the Caribbean organizations.

The organization has made an open call for more volunteers to get involved, especially young people who are the future of the community. The organization plans to hold monthly socials and is open to ideas from community members on innovative fundraising ideas. There is a social tonight at 8:00 p.m.

Historical time-line CCOM

1981 - A liaison group was formed to represent the Caribbean Community Organizations

20 years joined Folklorama - established Folklorama Management Committee to run the Pavilion

2006 CCOM bought the building on 1100 Fife Street

The stakeholders are the member organizations- owners of the building.

A committee was struck to manage the building

As a fund raising strategy CCOM created a separate charitable organization Caribbean Community Cultural

Centre Inc. to provide charitable receipts to encourage individuals’ donation.

This organization later believed it was independent of CCOM and was the owner of the Centre

The Centre fell behind in its payments and saw no way to go forward

The Management Committee put the building up for sale

This was later found to be unconstitutional as the building did not belong to the Community Centre.

At a meeting of the stakeholders, the decision was made to sell. An offer was made, CCOM accepted, they prepared to move, got a place and then the offer of sale was rescinded. CCOM was left holding the bag. They now had two buildings to pay for. Luckily, they found an organization to sublet the new place.

The Community appears to recommit to keeping the building.

They need your help and support.  Call the Centre today and offer to help.

Friday, March 19, 2010

LEAF Champions Women's Rights at the Supreme Court

LEAF Intervenes in Withler v. Canada at the Supreme Court of Canada

For Immediate Release
March 17, 2010 - The Women's Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF) intervened today in the Supreme Court of Canada case of Withler et al, v. Canada.
"This appeal marks the first case heard by the Supreme Court of Canada in over two years in which the only basis for the challenge is a violation of equality rights under the Charter" says LEAF counsel Daphne Gilbert. Gilbert, a professor of law at the University of Ottawa, notes that "this case will have significant implications for our understanding of constitutional equality rights in Canada". LEAF and the Attorney General of Ontario were the only interveners.
The class actions involve a federal government supplementary death benefit paid to spouses of deceased civil servants and armed forces members. The claimants allege that the legislation discriminates based on age because the death benefit payout decreases by 10 per cent each year for ten years once the participant lives beyond the age 60 or 65, at which point the participant's spouse is entitled only to a minimum paid -up benefit.
The parties and the lower Courts describe the challenge as one involving age discrimination. LEAF argued that the Supreme Court must consider the impact of the reduced benefit on elderly women. "In this case, the claimant widows are excluded from a benefit designed to cushion the death of a spouse" says Gilbert. She explains that "due to the effects of systemic labour market discrimination, their caregiving roles and the limited participation of women in the workforce historically, widowed elderly women are financially vulnerable and have a need for the benefit in question".

Joanna Radbord, co-counsel for LEAF goes on to explain that: "The reduction provisions discriminate because the government has excluded a group comprised of predominantly elderly single women, from a scheme which is intended to offer transitional funding upon the death of a spouse. The exclusion exacerbates their already existing economic and social inequality."

For more information please visit our website at:
Daphne Gilbert

(613) 295-8998

Counsel for LEAF
Joanna Radbord Joanna Birenbaum

(416) 272-0516 Director of Litigation, LEAF

Counsel for LEAF (647) 500-3005
LEAF is a national, non profit organization committed to confront all forms of discrimination through legal action, public education, and law.

Winnipeg's Politician demands answer from Minister Vic Toews

Three Major Blows to Winnipeg’s Medical Research Community Demands Explanation from Toews, says Duguid
MEDIA RELEASE - March 19, 2010
WINNIPEG - Manitoba’s Senior Conservative Minister Vic Toews must explain why his government has dealt three major blows to Winnipeg’s medical research community in the last three months alone, says Terry Duguid, Liberal Candidate for Winnipeg South.
In an open letter, Duguid asks Toews to explain three decisions taken by the Conservative Government that together paint a picture of a research community under siege:
- The Government’s decision to cancel an $88-million vaccine facility for which the Winnipeg-based International Centre for Infectious Diseases (ICID) was the leading contender. (Duguid is the former CEO of ICID)
- Winnipeg’s loss of the headquarters of the Public Health Agency of Canada, following the permanent departure of Chief Public Health Officer David Butler-Jones for Ottawa.

- There is no funding in the federal budget for a promised $300-million expansion to the National Microbiology Lab on Arlington.
“Given the serious impact on Winnipeg in terms of both job opportunities and our international reputation, I am writing this open letter because I believe that you, as Senior Minister for Manitoba, owe the public some answers,” Duguid writes.
“Under your leadership, Manitoba appears to play an ever-diminishing role in Public Health. I hope you and your colleagues in the Conservative caucus will explain just what you are doing to defend Manitoba’s interests, and Winnipeg’s role as a major centre for medical research.”


Terry Duguid,

Liberal Candidate for Winnipeg South


The open letter to Vic Toews is attached.


March 19, 2010

Dear Minister Toews,

In the past two months, the Federal Government has made three decisions with major implications on Winnipeg’s public health and infectious diseases community.

Given the serious impact on Winnipeg in terms of both job opportunities and our international reputation, I am writing this open letter because I believe that you, as Senior Minister for Manitoba, owe the public some answers.

1. CHVI: Winnipeg’s Loss of an $88-million Vaccine Facility

As you know, the Government of Canada cancelled the vaccine manufacturing facility portion of the Canadian HIV Vaccine Initiative (CHVI), an $88-million project to which funding had already been committed. The facility would have been self-sustaining, and Winnipeg was an outstanding candidate, not least because we have the greatest concentration of HIV/AIDS researchers in Canada.

I note that while you have been willing to comment publicly on other issues, from the funding of youth centres to the legal troubles of your former caucus colleague Rahim Jaffer, you have yet to explain the major inconsistencies in your government’s handling of the CHVI file, or even whether you objected to its cancellation.

My first questions are: What did you do to fight for Winnipeg’s bid for CHVI? Do you agree with the Health Minister’s contention that no bidder was qualified? What are you doing to ensure that HIV/AIDS researchers in Winnipeg receive their share of funds from CHVI?

2. Winnipeg Losing its Position as Headquarters for the Public Health Agency of Canada

Second, I note with concern the fact that Dr. David Butler-Jones, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, has moved to Ottawa.

When it was created, PHAC was envisioned along the lines of the Centres for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia. It was located far from the national capital so that science, and not politics, could hold sway in public health decisions. Dr. Butler-Jones’ departure effectively eliminates Winnipeg as even a nominal headquarters for PHAC, with all decisions being made in Ottawa.

What are you doing to preserve Winnipeg’s role as a headquarters for the PHAC, and secure Winnipeg’s role for the future of the Agency?

3. No Funding for the Promised Expansion to the National Microbiology Lab

With the exception of a loading dock, there has been no new laboratory space added to the National Microbiology Lab for years. An article in The Winnipeg Free Press suggested that a major expansion to the lab - a project known as “L5L” - may be in the works, with a price tag of between $300-$500-million. However, the latest Federal Budget makes no mention of L5L, and your Government has made it clear that after the remainder of stimulus funds are spent, deficit reduction will be the priority.

Given the fiscal reality, is this project going to go ahead? Is the Government of Canada planning to allocate any funding to this project - even for feasibility studies?
In Conclusion
Since the Conservative government was first elected in 2006, you have been Senior Minister for Manitoba. In the last two months alone, Winnipeg has been denied a bid for an $88-million vaccine facility and appears to have lost the headquarters of the Public Health Agency Canada. A lab expansion has no funding in the federal budget - all in the midst of the biggest stimulus spending package in Canadian history.

Under your leadership, Manitoba appears to play an ever-diminishing role in Public Health. I sincerely hope this is not the case for the long term.
I hope you and your colleagues in the Conservative caucus will explain just what you are doing to defend Manitoba’s interests, and Winnipeg’s role as a major centre for medical research.
Terry Duguid

Aboriginal Actor receives Order of Buffalo Hunt

Ben Cardinal and Bill Merasky in Where the Blood Mixes

March 19, 2010
Premier Greg Selinger recognized writer and actor Billy Merasty for outstanding achievement in the arts by inducting him into the Order of the Buffalo Hunt at a ceremony at the Manitoba Legislative Building today.

“Billy Merasty exemplifies the Manitoba spirit of creativity, hard work and commitment to social justice,” said Selinger. “On behalf of Manitobans, I am pleased to honour Billy while he is back in his home province performing the lead role in a critically acclaimed and important play.”
Merasty is in Winnipeg this week as the lead actor in Where the Blood Mixes, winner of the 2009 Governor General’s Award for drama. The play tackles Canada’s painful history of residential schools and “the ‘60s scoop”, referring to the adoption of First Nation and Métis children in Canada between the years of 1960 and the mid-1980’s, through the experiences of one family and their community. The show closes this Saturday afternoon at the Prairie Theatre Exchange.
Merasty’s film and television credits include Le Confessional, Exotica, Liberty Street, The Red Green Show, Moose TV and Stardom and the locally produced movie Elijah. He has also written two plays: Fireweed (1992) and For Godly and Divinia (2001).

The Order of the Buffalo Hunt was founded in 1957 to recognize the outstanding and distinctive contributions of leaders in areas such as politics, business, sports and entertainment.

Merasty joins many notable people who have also received this award including Aboriginal leaders Dorothy Nepinak Betz and Mary Richard, artist Leo Mol and entertainer Neil Young.

- 30 ­-

New Gaming Regulations will help keep operators honest

March 18, 2010
Lottery Ticket Retailers to be Added to Regulatory Regime: Chomiak
Innovation, Energy and Mines Minister Dave Chomiak, minister responsible for the Gaming Control Act, today announced the pending proclamation of legislative amendments which will bring third-party regulatory oversight to lottery ticket gaming in Manitoba.
“The new measures will introduce additional expectations for the honesty and integrity of business owners selling and redeeming lottery tickets in Manitoba,” Chomiak said. “The amendments will bring independent oversight, via the Manitoba Gaming Control Commission (MGCC), to lottery ticket gaming through registration and investigation mandates similar to those in place for casinos, VLT site holders and gaming industry suppliers.”

Effective April 1, the MGCC will begin to:
· register the owners of all businesses that sell lottery tickets based on a formal application and background investigation process;

· set terms and conditions under which all retailers and their employees must operate; and

· inspect lottery retail locations, respond to player complaints and investigate irregularities.
“Overall, the new legislative measures will give players access to an independent avenue to lodge game integrity complaints and trigger investigations in the event of a dispute involving lottery ticket sales and prize redemptions,” Chomiak noted.
In addition to the amendments involving lottery ticket retailers, the MGCC will also have oversight for the Western Canada Lottery Corporation’s responsible gambling policy. This measure will bring consistency and equity to Manitoba’s responsible gambling commitments as similar regulatory requirements have applied to the Manitoba Lotteries Corporation and all casino operations since 2005, the minister said.

Diversity Scholarship Manitoba has money for the right candidate

Please help us notify your students about the CBC Diversity Scholarship Manitoba. Deadline May 28, 2010

The scholarship is intended for youth graduating high school with the intention of entering the field of broadcasting or journalism. One $1000 scholarship will be awarded to a youth who comes from an ethnic or ancestral background and is a visible minority or Aboriginal.
Applicants must be in their final year of high school, present a minimum average of 70%, live in Manitoba at time of application and hold Canadian citizenship or residency. All applicants must come from an ethnic or ancestral background that is a visible minority or Aboriginal.

Applicants are required to complete an essay addressing the question, what is the role of the CBC in our community? and to provide recent high school transcripts.

The application form is attached. Additional forms can be downloaded at or picked up at CBC, 541 Portage Avenue. The scholarship application is also available on CBC's website at

"CBC is committed to representing the diversity of people and voices that make up Canada and this community," explains John Bertrand, Managing Director of English Radio and Television for CBC Manitoba. "We want talented young people to consider working here to help us do that. We've created this scholarship to support and encourage those high school students who've already made the decision to pursue a career in journalism or broadcasting. They will be the CBC journalists and programmers of the future."

Leona Johnson
Manager, Partnerships and Communications

CBC Manitoba

Tel: 204 788 3127
Cell: 204 791 1179
Fax: 204 788 3104

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Cyberbullying in South Korea | Homepage Feature | PRI's The World

Cyberbullying in South Korea Homepage Feature PRI's The World

The rapping monk | Global Hit | PRI's The World

The rapping monk Global Hit PRI's The World

YouTube - High hopes for vertical farming

YouTube - High hopes for vertical farming

Cultivating crops on city rooftops

Is rooftop farming for you? If not how about highrise farming, apartment farming.  Check out this article below for some ideas:
Cultivating crops on city rooftops

Satisfying a hunger for tougher organic meat and milk rules

Satisfying a hunger for tougher organic meat and milk rules

The Federal Government may expand Aboriginal Status in Canada.

Feds may expand aboriginal status

Katie May

Northern News Services

Published Monday, March 15, 2010

SOMBA K'E/YELLOWKNIFE - The federal government has responded to court-ordered changes on First Nations status with a "bare minimum," according to aboriginal wellness co-ordinator Sandra Lockhart.
As a result of a Supreme Court order issued a year ago, the federal government announced Thursday it has proposed amendments to its Indian Act that would restore First Nations status to women who married a non-First Nations man, as well as to their children and grandchildren.
The amendments, brought about because of B.C. lawyer Sharon McIvor's 24-year legal battle to have the discriminatory 1951 Indian Act changed, have to be approved by Parliament by April 6 to meet the Supreme Court of Canada's deadline.
If approved, the changes would apply primarily to people who were born to a First Nations mother and a non-First Nations father before April 17, 1985, when the court first ordered the government to change a sexist stipulation of the old act that stripped women of their status when they married a non-First Nations man. The act did not set out the same rules for men who married a non-First Nations women.
The 1985 changes were not retroactive, however, and that is what these newly announced changes address.
But an NWT aboriginal wellness co-ordinator says the government is not doing enough to support those who are entitled to First Nations status.
"They were ordered to make it right - it wasn't from the goodness of their hearts - so they did the bare minimum," said Lockhart, the aboriginal wellness co-ordinator at Stanton Territorial Hospital and chair of the Public Service Alliance of Canada NWT Aboriginal Peoples committee.
Lockhart, a Cree woman and a member of the Lutsel K'e Dene Band, recognized the work of McIvor and aboriginal women's advocates in pushing these changes forward, and said the new rules will likely affect her granddaughter and future great-grandchildren.
The Department of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada estimates 45,000 people across the country will now be entitled to status, as well as their children. But Lockhart said she is concerned that the government has given no indication of how it will provide the financial benefits owed to these new members under treaty agreements.
"What they've done is they've actually imposed economic hardship on all First Nations," she said. "Not because these people were added. It's because the government failed to accommodate for the economics."

"People really need to understand treaties to understand that it's not costing Canada any more (money). Canada just needs to give up what doesn't belong to them," Lockhart added.

According to the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs, there are about 230 bands in Canada that set their own membership rules. Those bands will decide who can be part of their membership, regardless of whether individuals are granted First Nations status.

The department said new members of First Nations groups that do not control their own membership will be added to the appropriate band list.
All those who are now eligible for First Nations status will be entitled to the same access to government programs as are existing First Nations members.

INAC spokesperson Margot Geduld said Friday that First Nations benefits vary depending on many factors including band membership and on or off-reserve residency.

She said as of yet the government has no new plan to as to how it will provide those benefits to an influx of newly recognized First Nations people.
Neither Dene Nation Chief Bill Erasmus, a longtime proponent of the right for aboriginal people to set their own citizenship rules, nor Sandy Lee, NWT Minister responsible for the status of women, could be reached for comment.
"The numbers are really projected estimates, so they're going to be looking at that as we move forward, depending on who does apply (for status) and all those other elements," Geduld said.
In her speech from the throne in the House of Commons on March 3, Governor-General Michaelle Jean emphasized the contributions aboriginal people have made in Canada and pledged the government's support for aboriginal issues.

"Our government will also work hand-in-hand with aboriginal communities and provinces and territories to reform and strengthen education, and to support student success and provide greater hope and opportunity," Jean read.

Lockhart said she felt the speech promised more than the government delivered with these proposed changes to the act - something she doesn't consider to be "ethical leadership."

"Where's this support? I don't see it," she said. "When they did the throne speech they said, 'We support aboriginal people in their education,' and they also knew they were going to reinstate about 45,000 women and their children and their grandchildren. By not having the money to go with it, it's strategic in the sense that it has the immense potential to be divisive to the First Nations themselves."
Approximately 698,025 people identified themselves as First Nations on the 2006 Statistics Canada census. According to census data, First Nations represent three out of every 10 people living in NWT.
JAMES ROOSEVELT STEVENSON (published on March 16, 2010)
JAMES ROOSEVELT STEVENSON After a great life, James went home to be with the Lord on Friday, March 12, 2010 at Bethania Personal Care Home with family by his side. Remaining to forever cherish James' memory are his sons Jim (Yvette), Gary Judge (Marie), Darryl (Dale), Bruce (Wanda); grandchildren, Alyana (Jimmy), Chassidy, Tavail, Jennifer Rose, and Pierre; and great-grandchildren, Tristan, Skylar, Mytayah, and Dekotah. James was lovingly known as J.R., Jimmy, Pops and Poppa. He was predeceased by his beloved wife, Inez, of many years, on October 25, 1981. There are few people in the world that enjoyed their life with passion, never uttering a negative comment to anyone and always willing to help other people. The kind of person who placates a troubled situation with a disarming smile and peaceful outlook on life. People of this nature are very rare. They are special and unique. James was undoubtedly such a person. He was born in Annapolis Royal, NS in 1919, a town which is rich in history. As a young man of 21, and like many men his age, James enlisted in the Second World War with the Canadian Forestry Corps Battalion. He was stationed in Scotland. At the end of the war, James decided to venture out to Western Canada in pursuit of employment and adventure. He arrived in Winnipeg in 1949. He became a sleeping car porter for the Canadian National Railway. James worked for the Canadian National Railway and VIA Rail for over 35 years. During his last five years with VIA Rail, James was In-Charge-Porter on the Churchill line. The church played a fundamental role in the life of James. He attended the Pilgrim Baptist Church where he enjoyed being part of a devoted group of people who wanted to serve the Lord. James was an avid reader and loved History, World Events, and Politics. But it was in the Holy Bible that James sought true solace and guidance, often quoting Scriptures and being the consummate Good Samaritan. No one could have asked for a more wonderful and loving father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. No words can express how much James will be missed, and no words can express how much he was loved. They say angels walk among us, and to all who knew James, were acutely aware, that we had a true angel on earth. James lived a wonderful, fruitful and blessed life! Our family would like to thank the staff of Bethania Personal Care Home for their care and kindness given to our father over the past few years. Funeral service will be held at 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, March 17, 2010, at Glen Eden Funeral Home, 4477 Main Street with visitation one hour prior. Interment will follow in Glen Eden Memorial Gardens. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the War Amputations of Canada (Manitoba Branch), 1 Maybrook Dr., Toronto, ON M1V 5K9 We miss you and love you dearly and deeply! Arrangements entrusted to: Glen Lawn Funeral Home 455 Lagimodiere Blvd. 982-7550

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Young Atticus has Haiti on his mind

Atticus is a 6 year old  Winnipeg boy with  Asperger Syndrome (a part of the Autism Spectrum Disorder) who has an overwhelming need to help the people of Haiti. He pestered his parents until they helped him with his plan to do something concrete. He got himself a website to ask for your help.  Atticus and his mom, Sharon,  were in CBC on Saturday Weekend Show and I listened in awe and was impressed by the intelligent way he spoke.  He sounded seriously concern.  He is trying to raise $100.00 to be used for pipes.
His mom said that as part of the syndrome he has a zest for knowledge and speaks like a little prof . She said he has an incredible sense of justice and right and wrong.  In his world it is wrong what is happening to Haiti.. He would wake up his parents at 3 and 4 oçlock in the morning to share his concerns about the people of  What a special child.  Children will lead in the new millennium.  Please check out his website and donate to ease this boy's heart.

Friday, March 12, 2010


March 12, 2010

Premier Greg Selinger today announced nominations are being accepted for the 2010 Council of the Federation Literacy Award to recognize outstanding achievements in adult literacy.

“Strong literacy skills help Manitobans compete in today’s job market, reach their educational goals, provide for their families and look after their own health and well-being,” Selinger said. “I commend all adult learners who are working hard to improve their literacy skills and I look forward to honouring this year’s recipient of this special award.”
The premier noted that funding for adult literacy programs across the province has more than doubled since 1999.
This year marks the sixth annual call for nominations for the Council of the Federation Literacy Award. Created in 2004 by Canada’s premiers, this award recognizes the efforts of individuals and organizations involved in the literacy field. Medallions and certificates are awarded to acknowledge achievement in literacy skills, innovative practice and exemplary programming. The award recipients will be announced at the Council of the Federation meeting in August 2010 in Winnipeg. Later this year, Selinger will take over as chair of the provincial Premiers’ Council of the Federation.

This year, the Manitoba award will be given to an adult learner who has made outstanding progress in his or her own literacy learning, helped others and overcome challenges in improving their reading and writing skills. The Manitoba recipient will also be recognized at an official ceremony during Literacy Month in September.

Eligible nominees must have been actively involved in literacy and essential skills programming within the past 18 months. All nominations must be postmarked by May 28 and the winner will be notified before the public announcement in August.
Nomination forms and more information about the award are available on the Internet at or by calling the Adult Learning and Literacy Branch at 1‑800‑282-8069, ext. 1053.
Manitoba’s Adult Literacy Act, the first of its kind in Canada, came into effect on Jan. 1, 2009. The act formalizes the Manitoba Adult Literacy Program and calls for the development of a provincial adult literacy strategy. The strategy is intended to be responsive to the changing social and economic needs of the province and to provide direction for effective and appropriate adult literacy programming for Manitobans.

The Council of the Federationcomprises all 13 provincial and territorial premiers. It was designed to have the premiers work collaboratively to strengthen the Canadian federation by fostering a constructive relationship among the provinces and territories, and with the federal government.

It Turns Out The Irish Are The “New Irish” | | AlterNet

When the Irish were the bracero's.  When we do not speak up for the injustices of others, no one will speak when it is your turn, because your turn will surely come.  Yesterday it was the Irish, today is the Mexicans and other visible minorities that are being stereotyped and attacked at borders mercilessly.
Immigrants come in all shades and sizes.  To migrate is to human as applie pie is to Americans. It is the nature of people to move where the grass is greener. These artificial borders we put up and say "this is mine" can never, ever  stem the tide of people moving to find cool watering holes and greener pasteurs to feed itself and family.
It Turns Out The Irish Are The “New Irish” AlterNet

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Cross-Cultural Concert - Afro and Abo Mix (African and Aboriginal)

The Winnipeg Afro-Aboriginal Cross-cultural Association (WAACA) will be celebrating its one year anniversary with an energetically charged and unique cross-cultural concert featuring Summer Bear Dance Troupe, and the African drum and circus performance of Yamoussa and Kalabanté on Thursday, March 18th, 8 pm, at West End Cultural Centre, 586 Ellice Avenue.
The stage will come to life with Ojibway, Cree, Assiniboine and Sioux tribes represented in the Summer Bear Dance Troupe from Winnipeg, and Yamoussa Bangoura, Productions Kalabante from Montreal, a multi-talented collaboration of Guinean and Francophone musicians and acrobats (
Doors open at 7:15 pm, show starts at 8:00 pm. Tickets are $15 regular, $10 student, available at the door. Advance tickets available at the West End Cultural Centre or by calling Hilaire at 391-7672.
For more information please call Hilaire at 391-7672.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Manitoba Government gets tough on Child Sexual Exploitation

March 10, 2010

Stop Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Week Continues Until March 14

Empowering hotel staff to stop child sexual exploitation will be the outcome of a partnership between the province and the Manitoba Hotel Association, Family Services and Consumer Affairs Minister Gord Mackintosh announced today.

“We’re working with the hospitality industry and putting abusers on notice that people aren’t going to look the other way when they bring these young victims into hotels,” said Mackintosh. “We all have a role to play and want to be sure everyone has their eyes open to this problem. These children need our help every day.”

This initiative is based on an award-winning campaign launched in Alberta last year. The province will be working with the Manitoba Hotel Association to train hotel staff how to spot situations where children could be sexually exploited and report them. Details on the campaign will be announced in April.
“Manitoba’s hoteliers are pleased to take this additional step to help rescue vulnerable children from sex predators,” said Jim Baker, president and CEO of the 250-member association. “This campaign will give the people who work in our industry the information and tools they need to prevent this child abuse in hotels.”

Building on the work that began with the launch of Tracia’s Trust in December 2008, Manitoba continues to create awareness and offer assistance to those caught up in the cycle of child sexual exploitation, said Mackintosh. A number of public awareness sessions will be held throughout Stop Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Week including a public forum in Winnipeg called Dear John: It’s Rape, Not a Date.
Other forums and initiatives:

· The Sexual Exploitation Northern Regional Team has designed and developed postcards, banners, stickers and posters that will be distributed in Thompson and area this week. The Parkland Sexual Abuse Committee will distribute awareness and education materials throughout its region.

· Public meetings offering insight and education are planned for Brandon, Dauphin, Portage la Prairie and Winnipeg.

· The Grandmothers Protecting our Children Council will be on the streets offering coffee, tobacco and prayer to as many young girls and women as they can.

· The Provincial Advisory Committee on Child Abuse Sexual Exploitation Sub-committee now has a one-page fact sheet about child sexual exploitation offenders. It will be distributed through several internal networks and is designed to remind professionals from many sectors that child sexual exploitation occurs in several different forms, that it is a crime and constitutes child abuse.

“We will remain vigilant and continue to make every effort to reach out to children who are or are at risk of being exploited,” added Mackintosh. “They need to know there are people who care and that help is available.”

- 30 -

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Celebrating Black History - Diversity

Celebrating our Diversity - Black History Month

February is Black History Month

Proud of our History

Each February, the Government of Canada invites Canadians to take part in events that commemorate the legacy of black Canadians. The month was officially recognized by the Parliament of Canada in December 1995.
This year, the theme for Black History Month is “Proud of our History” and will celebrate the historic contributions of three black Canadians:

William Hall (1821 – 1904) was the first black person, the first Nova Scotian, and the first Canadian sailor to receive the Victoria Cross.

Harriet Tubman (1822 – 1913) was a runaway slave from the United States who led hundreds of slaves to freedom along the Underground Railroad and guided many further north into Canada.

Mifflin Wistar Gibbs (1823 – 1915) was an example of successful black immigrants in British Columbia, both as a prosperous merchant and a member of the Victoria City Council.
Background on Black History Month

Click on the links below to find out about:
1807 – Abolition of the Slave Trade in the British Empire
Mathieu Da Costa Challenge
Preserving and Promoting: Black Cultural Heritage in Canada

Historic events

The British Imperial Act of 1833 – the Act to Abolish Slavery in the British Empire

People – past and present


Games and quizzes

Photo gallery

Other links

Government Partners with Chinese Cultural Centre

March 5, 2010


Investment Will Create Jobs and Make Important Renovations

Winnipeg, Manitoba — The Honourable Steve Ashton, Manitoba Minister Infrastructure and Transportation, Rod Bruinooge, Member of Parliament for Winnipeg South, and Winnipeg City Councillor Mike Pagtakhan, today announced funding to renovate the Chinese Cultural and Community Centre in Winnipeg. They were joined at the event by Dr. Joseph Du, President of the Winnipeg Chinese Cultural and Community Centre and Cathy Auld of the Winnipeg Foundation.

“Since the Chinese Cultural Centre was established in 1987 with the support of Manitoba and our partners, the centre has worked to promote awareness and appreciation of the culture of Winnipeg’s 20,000 Chinese Manitobans within the province’s multicultural mosaic,” said Minister Ashton. “We are pleased to support this investment, which will help to ensure the centre continues its role as an educational, cultural and recreational centre for the community.”

“Renovations to this Centre will ensure that it remains a vibrant cornerstone of the Chinese Community,” said MP Bruinooge. “By investing in projects like this, the Government of Canada is following through on our commitment to fully implement the infrastructure stimulus package. These investments are creating jobs now, when they are needed most, and at the same time, positioning Canada for long-term growth and prosperity.”

The project consists of renovations to the Winnipeg Chinese Cultural and Community Centre, including the creation of new multi-purpose and meeting spaces. These important renovations will enable the Centre to meet current fire safety codes and improve upon energy efficiency.

“The Chinese Cultural and Community Centre is an important facility in our community serving our city's diverse community as well as promoting and preserving the rich 100 year history of the Chinese community in Winnipeg,” said Councillor Pagtakhan, Chair of Protection and Community services. “I am pleased the City of Winnipeg is demonstrating our commitment to invest in our cultural and recreational facilities so that the Chinese Cultural and Community Centre may continue to provide quality services for the entire community through these modern safety and recreation upgrades."

“It has been a long process, but we are finally making it happen. We will be conserving a lot of energy throughout the centre and have a state-of-the-art kitchen. In the long-run, we will be saving a lot of money too,” declared Dr. Du.

“The Winnipeg Foundation has long supported the Winnipeg Chinese Cultural and Community Centre as a place to celebrate, learn and share in a vibrant culture,” said Ms. Auld. “We are pleased to play a role in the Centre's expansive renovations with a grant toward kitchen upgrades. We are confident the overall project will expand the Centre's capacity as a sustainable community hub not only for Chinatown, but for our city as a whole.”

The total eligible project costs of this project are $200,000, with the federal and provincial governments each providing about one-third of the costs. The City of Winnipeg and other partners are contributing the remaining funding. The Government of Canada’s funding comes from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, announced in Canada's Economic Action Plan.

The federal $4 billion Infrastructure Stimulus Fund provides support to construction-ready infrastructure projects that can be completed by March 31, 2011.

Canada and Manitoba are working together to create jobs and boost the economy, while making significant investments that help communities improve their infrastructure. Both governments have agreed to work together to ensure that these funds are delivered quickly and efficiently.

Today’s announcement continues the important steps the Province of Manitoba is taking to support economic growth by investing $1.6 billion this year into infrastructure to stimulate the economy, create jobs, and renew the province's cultural facilities, roads, schools, health facilities and water treatment facilities.

Should Taxpayers shell out for additional resources for Maple Leaf Immigrant Workers?

It is a loaded question and it is being tackled by CBC. 
The facts are as follows:
Maple Leaf cannot find enough workers to fill the vacancies in their establishment and Canadians it appears are not interested in the kinds of jobs Maple Leaf offers - because there are many people, newcomers included, who are out of work in the City of Winnipeg and are not given or do not want those kinds of work. So Maple Leaf has to look elsewhere.  There are a couple of things Maple Leaf can do before bringing people to the country.
1) Maple Leaf can set up ESL schools in the source country for potential workers and their children - they will pay a fraction of the cost because wages are way lower in those countries - to prepare its workers for life in Canada. Give them about six months preparation and let them know they have to have a certain facility in the language before they will get a visa to work in Canada. This will motivate the learners to learn as quickly as they can;

2) Maple Leaf could also build affordable houses  about half hour outside the City of Brandon to provide living quarters for its workers and bus people in to work each day, this will solve the housing problems. It should make English Language the language of its business so that newcomers will be forced to continue practising their English so that they will not forget it;

3)  The government can contribute by providing basic settlement services to the newcomers - such as workshops on such topics as Canadian culture, dressing for the weather, sports, healthcare, child welfare services etc.  I think taxpayers would not mind a small contribution.  The bottom line is that Maple Leaf should bear most of the cost of workers who contributes and recoup it in the cost of their products.  In this way everyone contributes for the privilege of getting our processed foods. Thanks to the immigrants who take on work that Canadians shone.

International Women's Day in Winnipeg

The Honourable Jennifer Howard, minister responsible for the Status of Women spoke with representatives of a variety of women's agencies and organizations with displays at the Manitoba Legislative building honouring International Women's Day.
(Taken from govt. website)

There were more than 500 mostly women and men at the Legislature yesterday to celebrate International Women's Day and to have a free lunch on the government. The sandwiches, made by University of Winnipeg Diversity Catering Group were individually packaged in recyclable containers.  They were delicious.  It was nice to see the catering people picking up these containers afterwards as the leg does not have recycling bins. They were taking these containers back to the University to be recycled.
  According to one of the organizers, they catered for 500 participants and actually ran out of food. That is a good sign, more people are becoming engaged in women's issues.

I did not hear the speeches but people who heard them said they were informative especially June Menzies living history talk that took them down memory lane.  Perspective is always good. Good job.

Monday, March 08, 2010


UW RELEASE – 2010/041

WINNIPEG, MB – In honor of International Women’s Week 2010, The University of Winnipeg and the Institute for Women’s and Gender Studies presents Eight Conversations and One Quilt on March 10 and 11, 2010 daily at 11:30 am - 3:30 pm in Convocation Hall, (515 Portage Ave). This two-day event is in partnership with FemRev Collective, the UWSA Women’s Centre, and UWinnipeg’s Aboriginal Governance program. Everyone is welcome.
     The event features collective quilting with opportunities for discussion on a variety of topics with eight different guest quilters. Joining the quilting table are Jennifer DeGroot (UN Platform for Action Committee Manitoba), Lorena Fontaine (Aboriginal Governance UWinnipeg), Fiona Green (Women’s Gender Studies, UWinnipeg), Andrea McCluskey (Aboriginal Student Services, UWinnipeg), Shelagh Pizey-Allen (Copwatch), Andrea Smith (author and activist, University of California) and more. Quilters will be chatting while quilting alongside participants. This “kitchen table” setting breaks down barriers as participants stitch a quilt top, and discuss a range of issues with feminists, scholars, and community members.
American author, feminist, and social activist bell hooks writes, “It would further feminist movement if new feminist thinking could be once again shared in small group contexts, integrating critical analysis with discussion of personal experience.” This event incorporates hooks’ concept.

The goal is to break down barriers between women working in our communities and to raise the critical consciousness of those attending, whether they self-identify as feminist or not.

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UWinnipeg is consistently ranked in the Top-10 in the country on an annual basis by both Maclean’s Magazine and The Globe & Mail newspaper. The University of Winnipeg is a leader in academic excellence, Aboriginal education, environmental studies & sustainability, and theatre & the arts. Find out more by visiting .Follow us on twitter


Naniece Ibrahim, Communications Officer, The University of Winnipeg

P: 204.988.7130, E:

Friday, March 05, 2010

S.M.I.L.E. Plus Dental Service Seeking new clients for free Dental Services

Please share the information below with your Public Health teams, Families First teams and your clients.
The SMILE plus dental program is accepting new patients. The SMILE plus program was first introduced in Winnipeg over 20 years ago to provide dental services for children, who have had financial difficulty accessing dental care.

The S.M.I.L.E. plus services continue to be provided as a public health service by the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority in partnership with the University of Manitoba

Faculty of Dentistry who provide the dentist services.

The following services are available to eligible clients:
* Oral Health Needs Assessments

* School and Community Based Oral Health Promotion

* Dental Pit and Fissure Sealant Treatment

* Topical Fluoride Treatment

* Assertive Follow-up for Children in Need of Treatment

* School Based Clinical Treatment

If you have any questions about the program eligibility please call our clinic at 940-2090 for guidance.

Simple Productivity | Zen Habits

Simple Productivity Zen Habits

MSN Video - Could you be wearing someone else's returned underwear?

NBC Exposes Victoria Secret and other big name stores who have been passing off used (return) underwear to be sold as new. How gross and how unhealthy.  This could be a public health disaster waiting to happen. Imagine that! How unethical some of these business people are - businesses that we never thought would stoop so low!

MSN Video

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Abuse Case Rouses India’s Middle Class -

Abuse Case Rouses India’s Middle Class -

African Festival -AFRI'K Festival 2010 presented by Alliance Francais

2010 supports the AFRI'K Festival
Saturday, March 6th - 6:30 pm

Opening Night Collège Universitaire de Saint-Boniface - Student Center


Monday, March 8th - 7:30 pm

Musa Dieng Kala concert (Senegal)Collège Universitaire de Saint-Boniface - Martial Caron Room

General admission: $ 10

Alliance Française member: $ 8

CUSB students: Free

(On presentation of card)

Tuesday, March 9th - 7:30 pm

Theatre: “The Friendship”Musical theatre play produced by Daouda Dembélé

Collège Universitaire de Saint-Boniface - Martial Caron Room


Wednesday, March 10th - 7:30 pm

Theatre: “The Friendship”Musical theatre play produced by Daouda Dembélé

Collège Universitaire de Saint-Boniface - Martial Caron Room


Tuesday, March 11th - 7:30 pm

Screening of the film “Française” by Souad El Bouhati (Morocco)Following by a panel discussion on immigration and its issues

The debate will be in French

Collège Universitaire de Saint-Boniface - Martial Caron Room


Friday, March 12th

African Cinema Evening5:00 pm - “Finye” by Souleymane Cissé (Mali)

7:00 pm - “Waiting for Happiness” by Abderrahmane Sissako (Mauritania)

Collège Universitaire de Saint-Boniface - Martial Caron Room


Saturday, March 13th

Moroccan Tales by Mohammed Khadarchi - 2:00 pm Alliance Française du Manitoba

West African Tales by Boniface Bahi (Ivory Coast) - 4:00 pmAlliance Française du Manitoba


Tuesday, March 16th - 7:00 pm

Lecture and performance by Boniface Bahi “The Talking Drums ”

Alliance Française du Manitoba


Wednesday, March 17th - 8:30 pm

Tété and Eric John Kaiser concert (Senegal and France)Centre culturel franco-manitobain

General admission: $ 10

Alliance Française member: $ 8

CUSB students : Free

(On presentation of card)

WCCC 2010 supports the AFRI’K! Festival,

helping some Winnipeggers feel right at home

For the growing African-Canadian population in Winnipeg, there is something to celebrate. Now in its second year, the AFRI’K! Festival is presented by The Alliance Française du Manitoba in partnership with the Collège Universitaire de Saint-Boniface. This year it is also being supported by the Winnipeg Cultural Capital of Canada 2010 (WCCC 2010) through the ARTS FOR ALL program.

The AFRI’K Festival promotes the African Culture through the presentation of visual arts, music, cinema and literature. For almost 2 weeks, African artists will come to present their work in Manitoba, a region with a growing African-Canadian population.

As the festival continues to expand, it will increase the amount of French language entertainment accessible to people, and also reach out to a community in Winnipeg that is growing, and has a great deal to offer the art world.

The Festival runs from March 6 through March 17th and hosts artists from all over Canada, artists with ties to France, Mali, West Africa, Senegal, Morocco and more. The Festival includes theatre, film, live music, folk tales, oral tradition, children’s programming, and has something for everyone.

The Festival’s full schedule can be found on their website at
The Winnipeg Cultural Capital of Canada 2010 program is being produced by the Winnipeg Arts Council on behalf of the City of Winnipeg. In addition to unique events, WCCC 2010 will be supporting festivals like the AFRI’K! Festival all year long, including the upcoming Jazz Winnipeg Festival, WSO’s 2010 Indigenous Festival, the Asian Drumming Festival, and many more.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

The earth is one country and mankind its citizens.