Nov. 29, 2017

CBC News – Murray Brewster
Former MP to ask International Criminal Court to investigate Canada’s Afghan war conduct

Former New Democrat MP Craig Scott is appealing in a 90 page brief to the International criminal court to investigate the conduct of Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan.  The allegation is that Canadian soldiers captured Taliban and then handed the prisoners to the Afghan intelligence who then tortured the prisoners.  Last week, Fatou Bensouda, the ICC’s chief prosecutor, “announced that an investigation into possible war crimes in Afghanistan would take place and confirmed for the first time the United States would be implicated in the probe.”  http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/afghan-detainees-icc-1.4418269

 CBC News…
Sheilah Martin named new justice to the Supreme Court of Canada

Judge Martin is from Calgary and has been a judge since 2005. Now serving as a judge of the Courts of Appeal of Alberta, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.  Martin is nominated to the seat, not the position of retiring Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin.   http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/supreme-court-justice-sheilah-martin-1.4424318   Related article: Globe and Mail – Canadian Press   Trudeau names Sheilah Martin to Supreme Court of Canada   https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/trudeau-names-sheilah-martin-to-supreme-court-of-canada/article37122663/

As it happens – Carol Off and Jeff Douglas
After LGBT apology, the story of Everett Klippert, the last Canadian to be imprisoned for being gay

Trudeau’s apology to the LGBTQ2 community and individuals who were punished for being gay has prompted some incredible stories around the issue, including this one about Everett Klippert, the last gay man to be imprisoned for homosexuality.  Klippert was sentenced to life in prison, branded a sexual pervert and served five years before consenting sex between adults was passed in law by Trudeau senior.  The apology comes with a $100 million compensation fund.  Klippert died in 1996. http://www.cbc.ca/radio/asithappens/as-it-happens-tuesday-edition-1.4422830/after-lgbt-apology-the-story-of-everett-klippert-the-last-canadian-to-be-imprisoned-for-being-gay-1.4423300   Related article: CBC News – Aaron Wherry  ‘A turning point’: Power of apology lies in building the future, not tearing down the past – The prime minister apologizes to LGBT Canadians for ‘our collective shame’  http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/trudeau-apology-lgbt-analysis-wherry-1.4422591   Related article: CBC News – Evan Dyer  Sorry has been the hardest word for governments Official apologies were made for Japanese internment, residential schools, but lawyers still fear liability  http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/government-apologies-responsibility-1.4423371   Related article: Toronto Star – Editorial  ‘When hope and history rhyme’: Trudeau’s apology was a necessary thing  https://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorials/2017/11/28/when-hope-and-history-rhyme-trudeaus-apology-was-a-necessary-thing.html

CBC News – Matthew Braga
Spies more free to use cellphone surveillance tech without warrant, under court ruling – CSIS technique deemed ‘narrowly targeted, highly accurate and minimally intrusive’

The controversy is over a device known popularly as the IMSI Catchers or the Stingray.  The device monitors all cell phones where it is operating and allows police and intelligence agencies to listen in on cell phone calls of whoever is using a cell phone in range of the device. On Tuesday Federal Court Chief Justice Paul S. Crampton has ruled that warrants are not necessary prior to the use of the Stingray.  “Under Section 12 of the CSIS Act, the agency is allowed to collect, analyze and retain information without a warrant, as long as it is “strictly necessary” to defend against suspected threats to Canada.”  http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/csis-court-stingray-imsi-catchers-1.4423871   Related article: Globe and Mail – Colin Freeze  CSIS secretly capturing phone-identifying data of terrorism suspects: ruling   https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/csis-secretly-capturing-phone-data-of-terrorism-suspects-ruling/article37121846/

Globe and Mail – Renata D’Aliesio
Nearly half of soldiers who killed themselves in 2016 were dealing with loved one’s suicide

The startling revelation serves to draw connections between the power of grief as a high risk indicator for the suicide of members of our military, apart from what horrible war experiences may contribute.  A report by the military also drew attention to other factors:  “failing relationships, debt, physical injuries, mental-health illnesses and dependence on alcohol or drugs.”  https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/nearly-half-of-soldiers-who-killed-themselves-in-2016-were-dealing-with-loved-ones-suicide/article37122431/

The Hill Times (Canada) – Samantha Wright Allen
‘Repressive,’ ‘risk-averse’ corrections system needs parliamentary oversight, says Sen. Pate

Former head of Elizabeth Fry and now Canadian senator Kim Pate is calling for immediate efforts to make Corrections Canada accountable to the Canadian Parliament.  “We have created a system that has become more and more risk averse,” Sen. Kim Pate told the House Public Safety and National Security Committee members. “It’s become more and more repressive.”  Pate is a regular visitor and receives calls constantly from the inmates.   Pate sees existing policy as an obstacle to resolving many of the problems, including the over-representation of Indigenous people.  There are currently three different parliamentary committees examining the prison system.  http://www.hilltimes.com/2017/11/29/repressive-risk-averse-corrections-system-needs-oversight-says-senator/127126

CBC News – Briar Stewart
Demand for fentanyl test strips booms — but test is not widely available – A Toronto company has sold more than 200,000 of the test strips this year

The test strip is not new but also is not readily available among users.  Iqbal Sunderani, CEO of BTNX, based in Markham, ON, says the strips were intended for labs and police but his company has sold over 200,000.  In Canada, the strips are not licensed for detection of fentanyl in street drugs and can only be used in supervised injection centres.  Without the approval of Health Canada, the strips represent a liability when making them available for private use says the CEO.    http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/demand-for-fentanyl-test-strips-booms-but-test-is-not-widely-available-1.4420625

Blogger Russell Webster (UK)
The impact of maternal imprisonment upon a child’s well-being and their relationship with their mother

Webster is drawing attention to researcher Dr Shona Minson whose major area of study is the impact of prison on the children. Over the course of a doctorate at Oxford, Minson has written and published extensively on the topic and Webster summarizes her contribution in his blog.  https://us2.campaign-archive.com/?e=10ab936adc&u=f3b97d02b5235c9e7c9b3a65b&id=680e913725