Secret Status of women…

    Sept 7, 2015

 CBC News – Dean Beeby
Secret Status of Women report paints grim picture for Canada – Internal Harper government report speaks candidly of violence, poverty, wage gap affecting women

A report dated Feb. 10 and generated by the Privy Council of Canada for briefing purposes to the ministers of government has surprised activists on the Status of Women by its thoroughness and its accuracy.  The report says that Canada is falling badly behind on gender issues when compared internationally.  “Canada has no comprehensive national strategy to address violence against women, lagging behind several comparable countries, including the U.K., Ireland, Australia and New Zealand,” says the draft document marked “secret.”   Related article: Toronto Star Editorial (Sept 7, 2015)  Grant Mitchell   Time to tackle sexual harassment in the RCMP – The first step: civilian oversight

CBC News
Refugee health-care flyers draw fire to Conservatives – Survey flyers ask for readers’ opinion on health-care cuts for refugees 

The survey flyers, coming from Conservative incumbent Scott Reid in  the Ontario riding of Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston, and a second older query from conservative candidate Kelly Block in the Carlton Trail-Eagle Creek in Saskatchewan use much the same language to inquire if refugees should get better health and dental care than average Canadians.

Maclean’s – Martin Patriquin
A gun registry? No. Yes. No. Martin Patriquin on the Tom Mulcair’s flip-flops

Who would have thought that revival of the gun registry controversy would cause so much trouble for the NDP.  Specifically, Tom Mulcair has waffled several time about what the NDP would do with the questions of long guns if elected.  The reason for the confusion appears to be the mass murder of the women at the Polytechnique in Montreal and the fact that many in Quebec were in favour of the gun registry, witness the controversy between Quebec and the feds to maintain the data from the registry for provincial purposes.

Globe and Mail – Daniel Leblanc and Geoffrey York
How the RCMP lured one of Lindhout’s alleged kidnappers to Canada 

Amanda Lindhout was kidnapped in 2008 in Somalia and after almost a year of beatings and sexual assaults, she was freed to return to Canada.  The RCMP put together a scheme to entice the chief kidnapper, one Ali Omar Ader, to come to Canada for a better life and a book publishing deal.  RCMP arrested him using extraterritorial provisions in the Criminal Code to lay a charge of hostage-taking for a crime that happened thousands of kilometres away from Canada.

Toronto Star
Family reunion dream dashed by new immigration rule – A Toronto man who hoped to be reunited with his children after waiting years for permanent resident status has been told his sons have “aged out” under new age limits

How to crush a refugee parent!   Abdullah Ali Al-Zawqari fled Yemen for Canada in 2000 and left behind his three children, aged 2, 4, and 9 and for whom he applied to have join him in Canada.  The rules about the age of dependents changed in the interim and now it appears that two of the children have aged out of being dependents.  The story makes one realize immediately that the rules are meant to inhibit rather than facilitate refugee processing.     Related article: Toronto Star –  Frances D’Emilio    Vatican to shelter two refugee families as Pope Francis calls for Europe to follow suit   Related article: Globe and Mail  Joanna Slater   The epic journey of three brothers from Syria to Germany      Related article: Globe and Mail – Bill Curry    Immigration Minister defends Canada’s response to refugee crisis     Related article:  Ottawa Citizen – Lee Berthiaume      Conservative rule overhaul blamed for Syrian refugee backlog   Related article:  Globe and Mail (Op ed) – Amira Elghawaby and Bernie Farber Forget labels when we witness such dire human need

New Haven Register (Connecticut, US) – Esteban L. Hernandez
New Haven’s prison re-entry program taking shape to cut recidivism

Here are three novel ideas from New Haven on sentencing people to prison.  First, the Fresh Start program must actually start at the front door of what has happened and not at sentence expiry.  The three components are:  increased employment, necessary skills to be employed and support for record expungement.   Three local city agencies will get $400,000 to make it work and will track clients for six months to see the impact.