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Showing posts from June 21, 2014

Giving homeless people with mental illness a place to live works:study

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[Well, duh! *RON*]

The Canadian Press, Friday, June 20th 2014

WINNIPEG - A new study has found that giving homeless people a place to live first, then offering services for other issues such as mental illness and addictions, helps them become self-sufficient.

The Housing First model started in 2008 with $110 million from the federal government.

It involved 2,000 Canadians with mental illness who were homeless in Winnipeg, Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Moncton, N.B.

The Winnipeg study was conducted between 2009 and 2013 and involved 513 people.

Participants were randomly assigned to receive either a Housing First intervention or usual services provided to people who are homeless.

The Mental Health Commission of Canada says the results are promising, but there needs to be a plan to prevent people from becoming homeless and make available more affordable housing.

"Working closely with all our partners, including the aboriginal community, we are prov…

Fresh austerity protests hit Portugal

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[...And the beat goes on. Several thousand protesters took to the streets of Lisbon in the latest demonstration against the austerity policies of Portugal's centre-right government. *RON*]

Agence France-Presse, Channel News Asia, 22 June 2014

LISBON: Several thousand protesters took to the streets of Lisbon on Saturday in the latest demonstration against the austerity policies of Portugal's centre-right government.

"Change the policies" and "Out with the government" chanted members of the country's largest union, the CGTP, which had gathered thousands for a protest in the northwestern port of Porto a week earlier.

"Living conditions in Portugal are only getting worse as a result of unfair policies. We've had enough of this government," said Jorge Macau, 35, a local government worker who had travelled from the southeastern region of Evora.

But despite years of bruising austerity measures, the unions h…

Most Canadians Oppose Tories' Cyberbullying Bill, Poll Suggests

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[The Harper government hasn't fooled anyone with Surveillance State II, any more than we were fooled by its first incarnation, any more than they fooled the Supreme Court with it. Of course, what most Canadians want appears to mean very little to this government since they know what is ideologically correct without the need to consult the electorate. *RON*]

By Eric Grenier, Huffington Post, 06/21/2014


A new poll suggests Canadians are giving a thumbs down to the Conservative government's cyberbullying legislation, at least when asked about elements of Bill C-13 that have nothing to do with cyberbullying.

The poll by Forum Research, conducted June 13-14 and surveying 1,433 Canadians via interactive voice response, showed more than two-thirds of Canadians disapproved of a stipulation in the controversial bill that would allow authorities to access personal data without a warrant.

The vast majority of Canadians who have posted personal data onl…

Mafiosi Are 'Excommunicated', Pope Says

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[I wonder if the Cardinals knew what they were getting into when they voted Francis I into office! Do you think there is any buyers' remorse going around in the Vatican? :-) Good for him, though! *RON*]

By Reuters, New York Times, June 21, 2014

SIBARI Italy (Reuters) - Pope Francis on Saturday took on one of Italy's most dangerous organised crime groups, calling it an example of "the adoration of evil" and saying Mafiosi "are excommunicated".

The pope, speaking about the 'Ndrangheta crime group during a mass in the southern Italy, issued the strongest attacks on organised crime since the late Pope John Paul lambasted the Sicilian Mafia in 1993.

"Those who in their lives follow this path of evil, as mafiosi do, are not in communion with God. They are excommunicated," Pope Francis said in impromptu comments at a mass before tens of thousands of people.

He told the crowd: "This evil must be fought agai…

Jason Kenney Effectively 'Phasing Out' Foreign Worker Program

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[Kenney is singing a brand-new tune just one day after announcing "major changes" to the TFW program. I think he was flying a trial balloon and is now reacting the to general backlash that appeared in response to his non-announcement announcement. But is he also announcing new funding for apprenticeship and other training programs for Canadians? Or changes to immigration policy that will allow us to bring in highly skilled people we really need as permanent residents? It seems not. *RON*]

CBC / Huffington Post, 06/21/2014 6:00


Employment Minister Jason Kenney says he considered shutting down the Temporary Foreign Worker Program altogether but has decided to phase it out instead.

In an interview airing Saturday on CBC Radio's The House, Kenney says he agrees with the argument that the free market should decide whether businesses need to increase wages to attract workers.

"To be honest, if I were setting policy today," Kenney t…

Income Inequality and Poverty

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[The OECD has issued a new report on income inequality. Income inequality has been rising steadily since 1990. Lower income groups were hit hardest by the recession across the board - either losing more or recovering less from the recovery than their higher-income neighbours. Youth - 18 to 25 years old - were hardest hit among all age groups. The report doesn't give an explanation for this but presumably the elderly were somewhat protected by pension programs while youth have faced high unemployment. While Canada is not the worst of the bunch, it is still true that the bottom 10% of Canadians get 2.8% of our total income, while the top 10% gets 24.2%. *RON*]

Is everyone getting their fair share?

There is widespread concern that economic growth has not been fairly shared, and that the economic crisis has only widened the gap between rich and poor. The Social Policy Division examines the trends and patterns in inequality and poverty for OECD an…

First Nations stretch yarn across Douglas channel to protest Northern Gateway approval

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[Ok, enough already, but I can be forgiven for taking a few moments of pride in my mom's home village! :-) The 3.3 km crochet chain is to "show that we’re prepared to do what it takes to stop them," says representative. *RON]

By Canadian Press / Star, Sat Jun 21 2014
HARTLEY BAY, B.C.—The women of the Gitga’at Nation of British Columbia say they stretched wool yarn across the Douglas Channel on Friday in a symbolic protest against the federal government’s approval of the Northern Gateway pipeline.

They say the crochet chain stretched more than 3.3 km, across the opening of the narrow channel tankers will have to navigate to a marine export terminal set to be located in Kitimat, on the north coast.

“It’s to show that we’re prepared to do what it takes to stop them because we can’t let it happen. It’s the death of our community, our culture,” said Lynne Hill, who came up with the crochet blockade.

Irate monks & angry unions: 1,000s rally in London against govt austerity (VIDEO)

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[The Russia Times, of course, dwells lovingly on anything that's going wrong in the West. But this still means that they provide coverage on items that get barely a mention in the mainstream media. And there is no doubt that anti-austerity rumblings are growing louder around the world. *RON*]
Russia Times, June 21, 2014

A “no more austerity” march is gearing up in the British capital and RT’s Sara Firth says tens of thousands have already come to demand an alternative to the “greed and selfishness” of the Con-Dem coalition.

The rally, which also includes a festival, was called by The People's Assembly Against Austerity, an broad coalition of anti-government groups that embraces trade unions and other campaigners.

“Living standards continue to drop, forcing millions into poverty, yet the politicians remain addicted to austerity,” the rally’s web page said.