Category Archives: Uncategorized

Niagara’s Health System to Manage COVID-Ravaged Long-Term Care Home in Niagara Falls, Ontario

Niagara Health to Provide Temporary Management Support to Privately Owned and Operated Oakwood Park Lodge in Niagara Falls, Ontario

“Our hospital team is taking immediate action to contain the virus and protect residents and staff. Their health and wellbeing is our most important priority.”                                                              – Niagara Health President Lynn Guerriero.

News from Niagara Health, Niagara, Ontario’s amalgamated system of hospitals

Posted December 22nd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Effective (late this December 22nd), Niagara Health will provide temporary management support through a voluntary contract with Oakwood Park Lodge, a long-term home in Niagara Falls that is in a home-wide outbreak of COVID-19.

The Oakwood Place Long-Term Care facility in Niagara, Falls, Ontario

The outbreak was declared on December 12, 2020. A total of 97 residents have tested positive for COVID-19. Sadly, eight residents who tested positive have passed away. In addition, 91 staff have tested positive as part of surveillance testing.

“Our hospital team is taking immediate action to contain the virus and protect residents and staff. Their health and wellbeing is our most important priority,” says Niagara Health President Lynn Guerriero. Continue reading

MPP Demands More Action on Huge Outbreak at Niagara Falls Long-Term Care Home

NDP MPP Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls) is demanding immediate action at Oakwood Park Lodge long-term care home in Niagara Falls

A News Release rom the Constituency Office of Niagara Falls Constituency Office of NDP MPP Wayne Gates

Posted December 22nd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara Falls NDP MPP Wayne Gates. File photo

NIAGARA FALLS —NDP MPP Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls) is demanding immediate action at Oakwood Park Lodge long-term care home in Niagara Falls, where an outbreak of COVID-19 has infected at least 90 residents at the 153-bed facility, as well as 60 staff members, and nine lives have already been lost.

“I am hearing from residents, staff and worried family members about what’s happening at Oakwood Park Lodge. It’s clear the Ford government needs to step in immediately and take over this home. Lives are at stake and there isn’t a minute to waste,” said Gates.

Gates says he has received complaints of chronic understaffing, inadequate PPE and lack of communication from the owners of the home, Conmed, a for-profit corporation. Continue reading

Ford Putting Big Buck Interests of “Big-Box CEOs” Ahead of Smaller Local Businesses

Ontario’s NDP Official Opposition Leader says Longer Deeper, Broader Lockdown the Result of Ford Putting Politics And Big Business Ahead of Health

“A lot of folks are already on the brink. This lockdown means more people are facing the collapse of their business and loss of their job.”                                                                                                         – Ontario Opposition Leader Andrea Horwath

A News Release from the Office of Ontario’s Official Opposition Leader Andrea Horwath

Posted December 22nd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

NDP Leader says longer deeper, broader lockdown the result of Ford putting politics and big business ahead of health

HAMILTON, Ontario  — People will need much greater financial supports to make it through this lockdown, while more public health supports will be needed to make it effective, said NDP Leader Andrea Horwath, who also said Ford has been putting politics and big-box CEOs ahead of public health.

Big Box chain stores like Walmart, along with chain grocery and pharmacies saw great profits during the first lockdown, and and are expected to do well in this one. What about all of the smaller, local, independently owned businesses?

“It should never have come to this. We are facing a longer, deeper, wider lockdown because Doug Ford caved to politics in his caucus. He caved to the demands of the CEOs of big-box giants.

And he sat on billions in COVID-19 funding because he didn’t want to spend it,” said Horwath. “Once again, Ford is scrambling to catch up, and it’s Ontarians that now have to pay the price for that.” Continue reading

Brock University in Niagara Prepared For Province-Wide Lockdown

‘With Niagara being moved into the lockdown classification, Brock will move into its Stage 1 effective Thursday, Dec. 24 at noon.’

A News Release from Brock University in Niagara, Ontario

Posted December 22nd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Brock University, with the original old ‘Brock Tower’ in the background.

Further steps to limit the spread of COVID-19 were announced by the Ontario government on Monday, Dec. 21 with a province-wide lockdown coming later this week.

Effective Saturday, Dec. 26, the Niagara region will join the rest of the province in moving into a lockdown under Ontario’s COVID-19 response framework. This will be effective for at least 28 days until Friday, Jan. 22.

Brock University had previously announced it was moving into Stage 2 of its own Stages of Response and Recovery plan<https://brocku.ca/wp-content/uploads/sites/216/Stages-for-Pandemic-Response-and-Recovery-Report.pdf> effective at 12:01 a.m. Monday, Dec. 21 to align with the government moving Niagara region into the Red (Control) classification. Continue reading

Niagara Centre MP Vance Badawey Announces Funding Support for Legions

A News Release from the Niagara Centre Constituency Office of Federal Representative Vance Badawey

Posted December 21st, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara Centre MP Vance Badawey

Welland, Ontaro – This December 21st, Niagara Centre MP Vance Badawey announced $32,535.15 in funding from the Government of Canada to support the Rose City Legion, Thorold Legion, and Port Colborne & Humberstone Legion, on behalf of the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence.

This funding will assist our local veteran organizations with their operational costs so they can continue providing important support for Veterans.

The Veterans Organizations Emergency Support Fund is part of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan to protect jobs, provide emergency support and keep businesses afloat through the pandemic. Organizations such as our Legions, play a critical role in the well-being of Veterans, their families and the community. Continue reading

New Visitor Restrictions at Niagara Health Emergency Depts. and Urgent Care Centres

“We regret any inconvenience this may cause patients and their loved ones, but these measures are in place for everyone’s safety.” – Derek McNally, Niagara Health’s Executive Vice President of Clinical Services and Chief Nursing Executive.

A News Release from Niagara Health, Niagara, Ontario’s amalgamated system of hospitals

Posted December 22nd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario – Niagara Health is implementing new restrictions for visitors at our Emergency Departments and Urgent Care Centres, effective this just-past Monday, December 21st at noon.

Niagara Health regularly reviews and updates its safety measures based on COVID-19 activity to ensure the hospital remains a safe environment. Emergency Departments and Urgent Care Centres are busy areas of the hospital and these additional measures are necessary to maintain proper physical distancing. These changes have been made in collaboration with our Patient Partners. Continue reading

A CODE RED Message from St. Catharines’ Mayor – Wear Face Covering, Whenever Possible, Stay Home!

St. Catharines Mayor Walter Sendzik

“This second wave of COVID-19 is overwhelming our healthcare systems and has had a serious impact on our long-term care homes in Niagara. We are on the verge of losing the battle against COVID-19 in Niagara – and if we do not get everyone – every family and every business – focused on removing the opportunities for the virus to move about our city, more people will become sick, more people will die.”                                                                                          – St. Catharines, Ontario Mayor Walter Sendzik

A Statement from St. Catharinges, Ontario Mayor Sendzik on Niagara Region moving into RED category of the provincial COVID-19 response framework

Posted December 21st. 2020 on Niagara At Large

Downtown St. Catharines in Niagara, Ontario. File photo by Doug Draper

Niagara, Ontario – This past Friday, December 18th, the Ontario government is placing Niagara Region – along with a number of other regions, into the RED category of the provincial COVID-19 response framework.

This means, that effective Monday, Dec. 21, there will be a number of broader-scale measures and restrictions<https://www.ontario.ca/page/covid-19-response-framework-keeping-ontario-safe-and-open#red> across multiple sectors – to stop the spread of COVID-19. This includes changes to the City’s recreation programs and facilities.

Please see www.stcatharines.ca/covid19<http://www.stcatharines.ca/covid19> for information on City programs and services, and watch the page regularly for updates.

This second wave of COVID-19 is overwhelming our healthcare systems and has had a serious impact on our long-term care homes in Niagara.

We are on the verge of losing the battle against COVID-19 in Niagara – and if we do not get everyone – every family and every business – focused on removing the opportunities for the virus to move about our city, more people will become sick, more people will die and more healthcare workers will suffer the stresses of a system-wide breakdown.

While the province is suggesting tighter restrictions may be announced next week, we need to continue to take a bundled approach to keep our community safe regardless of any future announcements.

We must act quickly and aggressively to stop the spread of COVID-19. To achieve this we MUST do the following:

  *   Maintain physical distancing

  *   Wear a face covering

  *   Wash your hands frequently

  *   Stay home

The only way to flatten the curve is to reduce points of contact. This means – no private house parties, no hosting dinner parties, and do not have your children or teenagers attending large gatherings in anyone’s house. These measures will greatly reduce points of contact and help to drive down COVID-19.

As we head into the final week before Christmas, please limit any travel in the community. Support small local businesses in any way you can, but also try to limit your points of contact. Curbside pick up, gift cards and pre-ordering products is a great way to both support local businesses and limit your own exposure to COVID-19.

Check out www.loveSTC.ca<http://www.loveSTC.ca> for some great ideas.

We are months away from a level of vaccinations that would be able to combat the spread of COVID-19. Now is not the time to let up and let other people do the heavy lifting of protecting our community. The greatest gift we can give each other right now is to stay home.

In the wake of Red Zoning in Niagara, Ontario, The Town of Lincoln circulated the following release on new restrictions in that Niagara municipality. To read the release, click on – https://mailchi.mp/e0a59d604302/statement-from-mayor-sandra-easton-and-chief-administrative-officer-michael-kirkopoulos-on-recent-cases-of-covid-19-in-lincoln-12973674?e=6d96d8ed62 .

NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below

“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders

Long-Term Home Care Staff Continue Getting the Shaft from Ontario’s Ford Government

Niagara Centre MPP Jeff Burch Responds for NHS staff and Niagara LTC staff, who continue to inform him about be ing unpaid for self-isolation when exposed to COVID-19 at work.

An Open Letter to Official Opposition Critic for Municipal Affair, Hon. Christine Elliot. Ontario Ministry of Health from Niagara Centre MPP Jeff Burch

Posted December 21st/ 2020 on Niagara At Large

OPEN LETTER

Dear Minister Elliot,

Niagara Centre NDP MPP Jeff Burch

I am writing to you today as a follow-up to my original letter sent to you on November 19, 2020, to which I have yet to receive a reply.

Dozens of health care workers have reached out to my office since the original letter, pleading for assistance. Nurses working in hospitals and long-term care homes are reporting that when their employers or health and safety officials direct them to isolate due to COVID exposure, they are not allowed to take sick days or get paid.

One nurse was exposed to COVID by a person in their bubble. OCC Health mandated them to stay home until they received a negative test, but said they could not take sick time or be paid. Continue reading

Dear U.S. Speaker Nancy Pelosi- Please Lift America Above the Moral Morass It is In – American Folk Singer Legend and Activist, Joan Baez

From Joan Baez to Nancy Pelosi, on Joan Baez’s Facebook Page

Posted December 21st, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Joan Baez

(A Brief Foreword from Niagara At Large publisher Doug Draper – Why am I posting this? Well because Joan Baez remains one of the greatest living activists for world peace and justice of our times. That is why. She was on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in the early 1960s when Dr. Martin Luther King delivered his iconic “I Have A Dream” speech and she was there for his funderal after he was assinated by a bullet of intolerance and hate in 1968. Love and peace to you Joan. Long may you live on. – Doug Draper.)

Thank you, Speaker Pelosi, for not mincing words about the 126 Republicans who joined the lawsuit filed by the Texas Attorney General. As you said: “Instead of upholding their oath to support and defend the Constitution, they chose to subvert the Constitution and undermine public trust in our sacred democratic institutions.”

But in these virulent times are words enough? Continue reading

Niagara Falls, Ontario Hospital Hit With Another COVID Outbreak

COVID-19 outbreak declared on Greater Niagara General Trillium Unit

News from Niagara Health, Niagara, Ontario’s amalgamated system of hospitals

Posted December 16th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario – Niagara Health has declared an outbreak of COVID-19 on the Trillium Unit at the Greater Niagara General Site in Niagara Falls.

The outbreak was called after four patients and two healthcare workers tested positive for COVID-19. All of the cases are healthcare associated.

“The safety of everyone at our hospital sites is our top priority, and our Infection Prevention and Control experts, working with our Occupational Health and Safety team and Niagara Region Public Health, is monitoring this situation closely,” says Derek McNally, Niagara Health Executive Vice President Clinical Services and Chief Nursing Executives. “We have taken immediate steps to ensure the safety of our patients, staff and physicians.” Continue reading

COVID Case Count in Ontario Hits Another Record High

With Daily Count Hitting 2,275, Province’s Official Opposition Leader Says ‘Just Waiting for a Vaccine is a Dangerous Plan’

A Statement from Ontario’s NDP Official Opposition Leader Andrea Horwath

Posted December 15th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Horwath responds to exploding COVID case numbers as Ford waits for vaccine

Ontario NDP and Official Opposition Party Leader Andrea Horwath

HAMILTON, Ontario — Official Opposition NDP Leader Andrea Horwath released the following statement in response to today’s (this December 15th, 2020) daily COVID-19 case numbers surging past the 2,000-mark to a record-high 2,275:

“Today’s exploding COVID-19 case numbers in Ontario are the biggest alarm bell yet that just waiting for a vaccine is a dangerous plan.

Doug Ford has been withholding $12 billion in COVID-19 funding, and it would be wrong of him to keep sitting on it.

As we head into the holidays, Mr. Ford is condemning families to more pain and suffering because he just doesn’t want to spend the money, so instead he’s waving a white flag in the fight against COVID. Continue reading

Canada’s Natural Resources Minister Launches Country-Wide Plan to Plant Two Billion Trees

Canada’s Natural Resources Minister Seamus O’Regan

“Planting two billion trees is more than a plan for climate action. It’s a plan for creating thousands of good, green jobs. We’re confronting the urgency of climate change and getting trees in the ground starting this spring.”                                                     – Seamus O’Regan, Federal Minister of Natural Resources

“The federal government’s commitment to fighting climate change, protecting forests, and creating good jobs – particularly through planting two billion trees across Canada by 2030 – is good news.”                                            – Rob Keen, CEO of Forests Ontario/Forest Recovery Canada

News from Natural Resources Canada, followed by a response from Forests Ontario and Forest Recovery Canada

Posted December 14th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

OTTAWA, Ontario  – This December 14th, the Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, launched the Government of Canada’s plan to plant two billion trees over 10 years, with an investment of $3.16 billion. Meeting this commitment will help Canada address climate change by reducing carbon pollution and is a key part of Canada’s efforts to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

There is no path to net-zero emissions that does not involve our forests. Planting trees is a natural climate solution that reduces emissions while providing other benefits such as improved air and water quality, particularly in urban settings; decreased risk of wildland fire to rural communities and support for biodiversity. It also provides spaces for recreational opportunities that improve quality of life and form part of our Canadian identity.

Canada’s plan to plant two billion trees over the next ten years is projected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 12 megatonnes by 2050. It will create up to 4,300 good jobs. Continue reading

COVID-19 Outbreak Declared at Welland Hospital Site

Welland Site’s Extended Care Unit Confirms One Positive Case

A News Release from Niagara Health, Niagara, Ontario’s amalgamated system of hospitals

Posted December 14th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario’s Welland Hospital site confirms COVID-19 outbreak.

Niagara, Ontario – An outbreak of COVID-19 has been declared at the Extended Care Unit, Welland Site, effective this past Sunday, December 13th.

One staff member has tested positive for COVID-19 following routine surveillance, which meets provincial guidelines to call an outbreak in a long-term care setting. This is a community-acquired case. The staff member is isolating at home and contact tracing has taken place.

“We are taking all necessary steps to create the safest possible environment for the residents and staff,” says Derek McNally, Vice President, Clinical Services and Chief Nursing Executive. Continue reading

Of Course the Canada-U.S. Border Crossings Will Remain Closed

Ten Months In, Border Shutdown Remains for All But “Essential Traffic” Extended Until At Least January 21st, 2021

So Why Is It That Thousands of ‘Canadian Snowbirds’ Get to Fly Down to a COVID-19 ‘Death Zone’ Like Florida?

A News Commentary by Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper

Posted December 13th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Since March of this tyear, when Canada-U.S. border crossings were first closed due to the pandemic, crossings like the Peace Bridge have remained a bridge too far for all but essential (mostly commercial) traffic.

Given the horrific numbers of people now dying and being tested positive for COVID-19 in the United States, it goes without saying that Canada’s Prime Minister would announce, once again, that the Peace Bridge and all other Canada-U.S. border crossings here and from sea to polluted sea have been closed for at least one more month now.

The border crossing ban, for all but “essential,” mostly commercial traffic, began last March when the first serious outbreaks of Coronavirus began, and probably few of us believed that governments – mostly the “It will disappear like a miracle Trump nut show – would handle it all so badly, that we would still be hear with a border ban today.

“Oh, it will probably only be a few months,” I recall many saying of the border restrictions back then. Continue reading

Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake Wins Prestigious Heritage Award

Niagara, Ontario Town Receives National Trust’s 2020 Prince of Wales Prize

News from The National Trust, a Canada-wide organization that encourages and honours communities that engage in heritage stewardship

Posted December 11th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

One look at Queen Street in the old town of Niagara-on-the-Lake in Niagara, Ontario

Recognized for its sustained commitment to heritage conservation over time, Niagara-on-the-Lake is a compelling example of resilience grounded in built heritage.

It is the recipient of the National Trust’s 2020 Prince of Wales Prize, which recognizes communities and their local governments for the successful heritage stewardship of a town, city, First Nations reserve or community, rural region, or district.

Niagara-on-the-Lake is a community that is proud of its past. Founded in the late 18th century, it is a living illustration early 19th century Upper Canada.

A National Historic Site of Canada, Niagara-on-the-Lake boasts an extraordinary collection of residential, commercial, ecclesiastical and institutional buildings, many on their original sites close to the street. Continue reading

Ontario’s Ford/Oosterhoff Regime Renders Another Blow to Our Natural Heritage

Ontario Government Betrays People of Ontario in Favour of Bad Developers with the Passage of ‘Schedule 6’ in 2020 Budget Bill

A New Release from the David Suzuki Foundation, Environmental Defence, Land Over Landings, Ontario Nature, Rescue Lake Simcoe Coalition, Simcoe County Greenbelt Coalition, Wilderness Committee

Posted December 10th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Now that Ontario has passed Bill 229 and its attack on Conservation Authorities, the job of protecting wetlands, forests, drinking water and quality of life falls to ordinary citizens

Ontario Premier Doug Ford and his Tory minions, including Niagara West MPP Sam Oosterhoff, turn their back on us. They have chosen the side of the worst of the worst in the province’s development industry. Our natural heritage can go to hell.

Toronto, Ontario  – This December 8th, the Ontario Government ignored a deafening chorus of expert warnings, to instead reward the worst developers and land speculators by incapacitating the system that protects source water and guards Ontarians against flooding, landslides and other environmental disasters.

Members of the Greenbelt Council, non-partisan regulators, legal analysts, municipalities, NGOs and farmers, together with tens of thousands of Ontarians of all political stripes and walks of life, have warned the government of the dire consequences of “Schedule 6” amendments to the Conservation Authorities Act.

These changes will let developers dump, build and excavate largely unchecked in high-risk areas, risking impaired water quality, property damage, and environmental degradation, and endangering public safety across the province. Continue reading

Brock Prof’s ‘Love Actually’ Spoof Goes Viral

Professor’s Video Aimed At Staying Connected With Students During Pandemic

“It’s just insane. I think it resonated with people doing online teaching right now and struggling to make that connection, especially now as the holidays are approaching,”                              – Brock Prof Lori MacNeil says of online reaction to video

A News Release from Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario

Posted December 9th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Brock University Lori MacNeil goes viral with video featuring a staying connected message to students

Niagara, Ontario – Brock University Biological Sciences Assistant Professor Lori MacNeil prides herself on connecting with students and making them feel engaged in the classroom.

So, when the COVID-19 pandemic forced her third-year genetics course to go fully online, she wanted to make sure that connection didn’t get lost.

Since the start of the Fall Term, MacNeil has been making increasingly complex introductions to her weekly BIOL 3P51 lesson videos. They have ranged from a brief magic show from Arrested Development’s Gob Bluth to her starting the class with a ‘press conference’ in front of the Four Seasons (Total Landscaping).

But her most recent intro topped them all, with MacNeil recording a holiday-themed mashup video<https://twitter.com/loriamacneil/status/1334181798612508674?s=21> with clips from the famous doorstep scene in the movie Love Actually. MacNeil replaces the character Mark with herself, using paper signs to silently tell Juliet (played by Keira Knightly) about how she hopes they’ll be in a classroom together again soon … but how in the meantime, Juliet still has to watch one more lecture, and study for an upcoming exam. Continue reading

Ford/Oosterhoff Government Passes Bill to Gut Conservation Authorites

Despite  Opposition from Countless Thousands of Citizens Across Ontario, the Infamous ‘Schedule 6’ in Ford’s 2020 Budget Bill – Was Rammed Through this December 8th

Bill Passage Also Means Conservation Authority Boards Will Be Raped of Citizen Members, and Environmental Protection Role Will Be Castrated

A Brief Foreword Note from Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper, followed by a News Release from Ontario’s NDP Official Opposition Party

Posted December 8th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

A Foreword from Doug Draper at Niagara At Large –

Ontario Premier Doug Ford and his Conservative minions, including his puppet in the Niagara West riding, Sam Oosterhoff, have now made it clear where they stand on environmental protection – and it isn’t on the side of our kids and their future. We have got to turf them out.

It may come as little or no surprise to anyone that Ontario’s Ford government – in bed with the most morally bankrupt and corrupt members of the province’s land speculators, farmers and developers as it is – would ultimately pass a 2020 budget, bill with a schedule built into it, to destroy any powers that the province’s 36 Conservation Authorities have to speak out for what is left of our natural heritage.

Why in hell would you want to protect what is left of our natural heritage when some greedy bastard with chainsaws and bulldozers can make another buck paving it over?

For this veteran journalist, who began work as a full-time environment reporter at The St. Catharines Standard 40 years ago, I have been witnessing this Ford government destroy at least that many decades of environmental protection progress by so many dedicated citizens in this Niagara region and others, and it is heartbreaking.

I know that there are many others in this Niagara region and others, in the development industry, in corporate agriculture and in land speculation, who won’t give a shit about my heartbreak or anyone else’s, but here we are. Continue reading

You Are Invited to ‘A BETTER NIAGARA’ Online TOWN HALL on Child Care

Join Us On Tuesday, December 8th at 7 P.M.

An Invite from Better Niagara director Liz Benneian

Posted December 7th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

 

 

 

I am so excited to be sharing this news with you!

Every municipality across our country is working on recovery plans to aid us as we get through the pandemic. Child care has long been an issue for families, so I hope you will join us on Tuesday for @a Better Niagara’s first Facebook LIVE.

FACEBOOK LIVE On Tuesday, December 8 at 7 PM A Better Niagara will be hosting a virtual Townhall discussing the importance of child care.

Continue reading

Renown Ontarian, Chair of Province’s Greenbelt Council Resigns Over Ford’s Ongoing War on Our Environment

Former Toronto Mayor David Crombie – Also a former Federal Conservative MP and Cabinet Minister – Has Long Championed Environmentally Sustainable Development in Ontario

David Crombie quits as Chair of Ontario Greenbelt Council in protest and out of principle. We need more profiles of courage like this in provincial and municipal leadership.

“It is now clear that the (Ford) Government’s direction under Schedule 6 of Bill 229 (of its 2020 Budget Bill, due to be passed as soon as Monday, December 7th) disastrously assaults (and cuts out the heart of integrated watershed planning and management; severely cripples the Conservation Authorities in the pursuit of their historic stewardship of environmental issues, and now with the grossly expanded use of Ministerial Zoning Orders (MZO) and other procedural revisions, essential public discussion and debate will be stifled or shut down.”                                                                                                                            – from Ontario Greenbelt Council Chair David Crombie’s December 5th’s letter of resignation to Ontario Premier Doug Ford

A News Release from Environmental Defence, followed by a response to this resignation from Ontario’s Official Opposition Party

Posted December 6th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Tim Gray, Executive Director of Environmental Defence Canada

Statement by Environmental Defence’s Executive Director Tim Gray, on  resignation of David Crombie, Chair of Ontario’s Greenbelt Council, in protest of the Ontario government’s attack on wetlands, flood protection and future prosperity

It is a great shame and a loss to the people of Ontario that David Crombie, the Chair of the provincially appointed Greenbelt Council, had no alternative but to resign today. His resignation comes as a direct result of Minister Steve Clark’s refusal to listen to the Council’s advice and remove Schedule 6 from Bill 229 (the budget bill).

In the words of Mr. Crombie: “It cuts out the heart of integrated watershed planning and management; severely cripples the Conservation Authorities in the pursuit of their historic stewardship of environmental issues, and now with the grossly expanded use of Ministerial Zoning Orders (MZO) and other procedural revisions, essential public discussion and debate will be stifled or shut down.”

Mr. Crombie and the Council have been key thinkers and advisors to the Ontario government on how to best protect farmland, natural features and economic prosperity. It is tragic that their impartial advice has been ignored and overridden by the self-serving demands of developers. Continue reading

Niagara’s Conservation Authority Working With Partners to Gift Our Region More Trees

Partners Plant Trees In Fort Erie & St. Catharines Thanks To TD Friends Of The Environment Foundation Grant

Initiative will have a positive impact on Habitat Restoration and Urban Reforestation

News from the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority

Posted December 4th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario – On Friday, November 13th, the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA) completed the planting of 128 trees across the Niagara Peninsula watershed.

Thanks to funding from TD Friends of the Environment Foundation (TD FEF), partners and volunteers planted trees and shrubs to benefit the local community and improve wildlife habitat.

The TD Tree Days grant of $8,000 supported the planting of eight large trees and twenty shrubs at Ferndale Park in Fort Erie, six trees at the Niagara Chapter Native Women’s office, four trees donated to Fort Erie Native Friendship Centre and an additional 110 trees, which were planted at homes owned by two native housing corporations. Continue reading

Ontario Failing to Take Effective Action on Climate Change

A New Report from Environment Defence shows that despite the Ontario government’s claims, the province has failed to take meaningful action on climate change or reduce greenhouse gas emissions

 

 

A News Release from Environmental Defence, a Canada-wide citizens advocacy group for environmental protection

Posted December 3rd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

These two individuals – Ontario Environment Minister Jeff Yurek (left) and the province’s Premier Doug Ford – and their Conservative government are not doing enough to meaningfully address the climate emergency we face.

Toronto, Ontario – This past Friday (November 27th), Ontario Environment Minister Minister Jeff Yurek outlined his government’s progress on its Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan and claimed to be lowering greenhouse gas emissions. Environmental Defence’s new report Yours to Recover:

A Progress Report on Ontario’s Climate Change Actions [https://environmentaldefence.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/YoursToRecover_OntarioClimateProgressReport_EnvironmentalDefence_FINAL.pdf] presents evidence that Ontario’s emissions are rising as a result of government inaction.

After two years, the Ontario government has largely ignored its own Made-In-Ontario Environment Plan and failed to take meaningful action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Continue reading

Buffalo, N.Y. Area Congressman Asks Biden Administration to Prioritize Canada/U.S. Border Strategy

U.S. Congressman Brian Higgins hopes the new Administration will work quickly to take Coronavirus seriously and rebuild the working relationship between our two ally nations to the mutual benefit of the cross-border economies.

A News Release from the Buffalo, New York Office of U.S.Democratic Congressman Brian Higgins

Posted December 2nd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Buffalo, New York area Congressman Brian Higgins

Buffalo, New York – Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) Co-chair of the Congressional Northern Border Caucus, is appealing to the incoming Biden Administration to make coordination between the United States and Canada a top priority, including development of a reopening plan at the northern border and the expansion of technology that provides for improved border crossing efficiencies over the long-term.

In a letter to Alejandro Mayorkas<https://higgins.house.gov/sites/higgins.house.gov/files/12-1-20%20Higgins%20Letter%20to%20Mayorkas%20Northern%20Border.pdf>, who has been named by President-elect Biden to serve as U.S. Homeland Security Secretary, Higgins writes, “The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically changed the daily operation of our shared border with Canada. Restrictions on non-essential travel at our land ports of entry first imposed in March 2020 have frustrated many of my constituents in completing their routine activities.” Continue reading

Niagara West MPP’s Compassionate Care Act Becomes Law in Ontario

Parties and Stakeholders Work Together to Improve Access and Quality in Palliative Care

A News Release from the Constituency Office of Niagara West MPP Sam Oosterhoff

Posted December 2nd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara West MPP Sam Oosterhoff, and member of Ontario’s Ford Government

Queen’s Park – Today (this December 1st), Bill 3, the Compassionate Care Act passed Third Reading unanimously in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario.  Originally tabled in 2017, MPP Sam Oosterhoff’s first Private Member’s Bill will become a law upon Royal Assent. This follows the re-introduction of the bill in July 2018 during the 42nd Parliament of Ontario.

Public committee hearings took place on November 23 and 24, during which 40 stakeholders testified in favour of the bill, including the Ontario Medical Association, Canadian Cancer Society, Canadian Society of Palliative Care Physicians, Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association, ALS Canada, and health professionals from across the province.

Witnesses at the hearings stressed the timeliness and importance of the Compassionate Care Act, which mandates the creation of a provincial framework to improve access to palliative care in hospitals, long-term care homes, hospices and home care. Continue reading

Habitat for Humanity Niagara Urges Us All to Join the ‘Giving Tuesday’ Movement

This Giving Tuesday – December 1st, 2020 – We Can Help Make a Difference

A Call-Out from Habitat for Humanity Niagara in Niagara, Ontario

Posted December 1st, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Today (this December 1st)  is Giving Tuesday which marks a day of giving and gratitude, and a reminder to all of us to think of others and our communities as well as ourselves.

The (world-wide) Giving Tuesday initiative encourages families and individuals to join the movement in giving and volunteering in whatever ways matter to them.

Please join the movement by:

Continue reading

In These Times of COVID-19, Remembering Another Lethal Epidemic on World AIDS Day

 

“In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us all of the importance of  community and has shown us that no one is safe until everyone is safe. This  year’s World AIDS Day theme, ‘Global solidarity, shared responsibility, recognizes that, like COVID-19,  fighting HIV and AIDS requires global cooperation and united commitment.”                                                                        – Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau

A Statement from the Prime Minister of Canada

Posted December 1st, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Ottawa, Ontario –The Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, issued the following statement on World AIDS  Day – December 1st, 2020

“Today (December 1st), on World AIDS Day <https://www.unaids.org/en/World_AIDS_Day>, we show our solidarity with people living with HIV and AIDS, here in Canada and around the world. We mourn the loved ones we have lost, and renew our commitment to supporting those who live with HIV and ending this epidemic and the stigma that surrounds it.

“In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us all of the importance of  community and has shown us that no one is safe until everyone is safe. This  year’s World AIDS Day theme, ‘Global solidarity, shared responsibility’ <https://spark.adobe.com/page/OdpIRTRApOghp/>, recognizes that, like COVID-19,  fighting HIV and AIDS requires global cooperation and united commitment. Continue reading

Urgent Help Needed for Niagara’s Struggling Small Businesses

Niagara Falls NDP MPP Wayne Gates Tells Ontario’s Ford Government  to Provide Emergency Support for Niagara’s Small Businesses Before THEY LOSE EVERYTHING!

A News Release from the Constituency Office of Niagara Falls NDP MPP Wayne Gates

Posted December 1st,  2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara NDP MPP Wayne Gates

QUEEN’S PARK – NDP MPP Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls) told the Ford government Monday (November 30th) that struggling businesses in Niagara need urgent financial assistance if they are to stay afloat after new restrictions were introduced to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the region.

“It has been two weeks since I told the premier that Niagara’s medical officer of health instituted an additional regulation to try to stop the spread of COVID-19.

“It has been two weeks since I told the premier that Niagara’s medical officer of health instituted an additional regulation to try to stop the spread of COVID-19 which has put restaurants and bars, the tourist sector, operators and the wineries in a very tough spot financially,” said Gates during question period at the Ontario legislature. Continue reading

Environmental Groups Sue Ford Government To Keep Ontario Wetlands Protected

 “Wetlands are delicate ecosystems that pay for themselves many times over both ecologically and economically. Their estimated economic value in southern Ontario alone is $14 billion per year. Yet in the Toronto area 85 percent  of our original wetlands. (About the same percentage of wetlands have already been lost forever in Niagara, Ontario.) When is enough, enough?”                – Caroline Schultz, Ontario Nature’s Executive Director

A News Release from Environmental Defence, Ontario Nature and Ecojustice, three of Canada’s largest environmental groups

Posted November 30th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Toronto, Ontario – Environmental groups are taking the Ontario government to court over its unlawful use of a Ministerial Zoning Order (MZO) to force through development on the provincially significant Duffins Creek wetlands complex.

Ecojustice, on behalf of Environmental Defence and Ontario Nature, filed the legal application to maintain protections on this special area, which the Ministry of Housing and Municipal Affairs has approved as the future site of a warehouse facility.

Provincially Significant Coastal Wetlands, such as the Lower Duffins Creek complex, are of huge importance to local communities, helping to mitigate flooding, store carbon, filter water and provide habitat to wildlife. Continue reading

We Need To Stop The Assault On Our Natural Heritage

A Call-Out from Ontario Nature, one of Canada’s premier advocates for protecting and preserving what are left of our green places

Posted November 30th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Across the Greater Golden Horseshoe developers and land speculators are lobbying local governments to allow sprawl-style development on precious natural areas and farmland.

We can continue to grow and prosper without turning the green space on the left into more of the low-density sprawl on the right.

They’re using COVID-19 as a smoke screen saying these developments are necessary to get us through the crisis. Continue reading

Ford Accused of Covering Up COVID-19 Info on Ontario’s Long-Term Care Homes

NDP Calling On Ford Government To Immediately Release All Documents That Have Been Requested By The LTC (Long-Term Care) Commission

“People living in long-term care continue to suffer and die, while Doug Ford’s government plays politics with information that could reveal changes that need to be made to protect people. ”       – Ontario NDP Long Term Care critic Teresa Armstrong.

A News Release from Ontario’s NDP Official Opposition Party

Posted November 30th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

QUEEN’S PARK — The NDP is calling for the Ford government to immediately release all documents that have been requested by the LTC Commission, following revelations by Queen’s Park Briefing that the commission itself says the government has refused to cooperate.

This past July, Niagara Falls NDP MPP Wayne Gates, left, with St. Catharines NDP MPP Jennie Stevens immediately to his right, and over at the right side of the photo, Niagara Health Coalition leader Sue Hotte, call on Ford government for  more public resources for long-term care homes. File Photo by Doug Draper

“A government that truly wants answers doesn’t work this hard to hide the facts,” said NDP Deputy Leader John Vanthof, who made the demand in question period on Monday.

“People living in long-term care continue to suffer and die, while Doug Ford’s government plays politics with information that could reveal changes that need to be made to protect people,” said NDP Long Term Care critic Teresa Armstrong. Continue reading

Join A Free, Online Event, Celebrating Treaties with Niagara’s Indigenous Community

Niagara College hosting We Are All Treaty People, a Living Library event on Tuesday, December 1st, 2020

An Invite from Niagara College’s Indigenous Education Department

Posted November 30th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

On the heels of Treaties Recognition Week, Niagara College is hosting its first-ever Living Library event to help educate the community about the historical and cultural significance of treaties, and the role they continue to play in the lives of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in Ontario.

We Are All Treaty People, a free online event hosted by NC’s Indigenous Education department and the Library and Learning Commons in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Indigenous Affairs, will be held on Tuesday, December 1 from 2 to 4 p.m. and the community is invited to join the live remote conversation via Zoom. Continue reading

Join the Citizens’ Campaign to Stop Ford from Gutting Ontario’s Conservation Authorities

Stop Ontario Bill 229 Schedule 6 and Save One of Niagara, Ontario’s Great Pieces of Natural Heritage – Waverly Woods

A Call-Out from Marcie Jacklin and Community Voices of Fort Erie

Posted November 27th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Hello Everyone

It seems nature is under threat by the government of the province of Ontario. Please take some time to respond to these initiatives.

Bill 229 Schedule 6

Buried in the (Ford government’s recently tabled) budget bill for the province is Section 6 which threatens to destroy Conservation Authorities by not allowing experts to be on the Board.

The Board would be composed entirely of politicians whose mandate would be to serve their communities (not the mission of the Conservation Authorities). Continue reading

Wishing Our American Friends and Neighbours a Safe and Peaceful Thanksgiving

A Brief Message from Niagara At Large reporter and publisher      Doug Draper

Posted November 26th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Along with all of our readers in Niagara and other regions of Southern Ontario, Niagara At Large is pleased to say that we have regular visitors to this news and commentary site from the Buffalo, New York area and other regions in the United States.

With those NAL readers across the border in mind, I want to wish all of them on this American Thanksgiving – November 26th, 2020 – a warm and peaceful Thanksgiving, and a safe and healthy one during times unlike any most of us have ever experienced before. Continue reading

Ontario’s Premier Angered Over COVID-19 Criticisms in Auditor General’s Report

Doug Ford Says Ontario Continues to have some of lowest per-capita COVID case counts on Continent

A Brief One Posted by Doug Draper on Niagara At Large

Posted November 25th, 2020

Ontario Premier Doug Ford

At a news conference this November 25th, Ontario Premier Doug Ford lashed out at a report by the province’s Auditor General, Bonnie Lysyk, accusing his government of being slow on the draw and not as transparent as it should be on responding to the COVID-19 health crisis confronting us.

Ford addressed the Auditor General’s critical report, released earlier this November 25th, after he and his Health Minister, Christine Elliott, discussed some recommendations on how citizens should navigate the coming Christmas holidays during this second wave of the pandemic, and funding his government is providing to support small businesses.

To watch the news conference, click on the screen immediately below –

To read a news piece posted on Niagara At Large earlier this November 25th on the Ontario Auditor General’s report, click on – https://niagaraatlarge.com/2020/11/25/ontarios-ford-government-response-to-pandemic-slow-compared-to-other-provinces/ .

To watch Ontario Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk’s press conference on this issue, click on the screen immediately below –

Okay, so what do you think? Ontario citizens make up the judge and jury on this one.

NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.

“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders

Ontario’s Ford Government Response to Pandemic ‘Slow’ Compared to Other Provinces

Ontario’s COVID-19 Response Faced Systemic Issues and Delays

‘Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health did not fully exercise his powers under the Health Protection and Promotion Act to respond to COVID-19.’                                                                                 – Ontario Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk

A News Release from the Office of Ontario Auditor General Ontario’s COVID-19 Response Faced Systemic Issues and Delays

Posted November 25th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Ontario Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk releases critical report on Ford government’s response to COVID-19

Toronto, Ontario –  Ontario’s Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk says the province’s response to COVID-19 in the winter and spring of 2020 was slower and more reactive relative to other provinces.

The audit looked at three areas: emergency management and pandemic response; outbreak planning and decision-making; and laboratory testing, case management and contact tracing.

It found a number of contributing factors leading to this slower pandemic response, including outdated provincial emergency plans, insufficient staff and significant changeover in leadership at Ontario’s Provincial Emergency Management Office (EMO), as well as systemic issues such as the lack of lab surge capacity and outdated IT systems. Continue reading

Welcoming America Back to the Climate Fight – And Not A Second Too Soon!

“Climate change is the number one issue facing humanity.”           – U.S. President-Elect Joe Biden

A Commentary by Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper

Posted November 25th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Finally!

The world has someone taking over the White House’s Oval Office in the New Year who sounds very much like he takes the climate emergency facing life on this planet seriously.

And it could not come a moment too soon!

Most experts around this world agree that climate change is an existential threat that could have catastrophic consequences for all of us if we don’t take significant, decisive action to address it – NOW. Continue reading

City of St. Catharines Moving to Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicles deliver environmental boost and cost savings

A News Release from the City of St. Catharines in Niagara, Ontario

Posted November 25th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario – New City fleet investments aren’t just delivering savings for taxpayers, they are saving the environment. This fall the City purchased its first fully electric vehicles, three 2020 Chevrolet Bolt EVs.

Manager of Equipment Maintenance Jim Thompson showcases one of three new 2020 Chevrolet Bolt Electric Vehicles purchased by the City, marking the first fully-electric additions to the City fleet. Photo courtesy of City of St. Catharines

The purchase of the vehicles, which replace the trucks that were utilized by Municipal Works supervisors, comes as the City continues efforts to reduce its carbon footprint and contribute to the fight against climate change. Continue reading

Documentary Photo Project Highlights Urgent Need to Protect Lake Erie

“When Lake Erie’s health is impacted, so are the lives of the people who live near and love the lake. We wanted to show that through this project.”                                                                                  – Keith Brooks, Programs Director with Environmental Defence

Two Niagara Region residents are featured in a new documentary photo exhibit, North of Long Tail , which explores people’s connections with Lake Erie

A News Release from Environmental Defence Canada and Documentary Photographer Colin Boyd Shafer

Posted November 24th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Our Lake Erie from space. For many decades now, it has faced serious environmental challenges. It is ultimately up to us and our governments to restore this great freshwater body to full health

Toronto, Ontario – Two people from Niagara Region are part of a new documentary photography exhibition, launched today online, which showcases Canadians’ deep personal connections with Lake Erie and highlights why the lake needs to be protected.

North of Long Tail , a collaboration between Environmental Defence and documentary photographer Colin Boyd Shafer, contains 20 stories from the north side of the lake.

“Lake Erie is more than just a body of water. So many people rely on the lake for so many things — to support their business, for drinking water, recreation, or just a place to unwind and relax,” said Keith Brooks, Programs Director with Environmental Defence. “When Lake Erie’s health is impacted, so are the lives of the people who live near and love the lake. We wanted to show that through this project.” Continue reading

Citizens Alliance Urges Incoming Biden/Harris Administration to Focus More Attention on Great Lakes and Clean Water

‘We look forward to working with President-elect Biden to create a Great Lakes region with thriving, healthy ecosystems and communities.’ – the Alliance for the Great Lakes

A Statement from the Alliance for the Great Lakes, a U.S.-based citizens coalition in the Great Lakes region

Posted November 24th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Our Great Lakes from space.

Engaging in the democratic process is one of the most powerful ways people throughout the Great Lakes region can have a voice.

The Alliance for the Great Lakes congratulates President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. Now that the votes have been counted, we must respect the vote and the work of election officials who have led a fair and transparent process.

President-elect Biden, in partnership with the Great Lakes region, has the opportunity to place safe and clean water at the center of our communities and make them healthier and more equitable than before. Continue reading

You Are Invited To A Virtual Conference on Contamination Concerns at Former GM Site in St. Catharines

Join Us On Wednesday, November 25 At 7 PM. For A Virtual Public Information Session About The Situation At The Former GM Site.

Once a major industrial force and source of good-paying jobs in St. Catharines, Niagara, what is left of the General Motors plant off Ontario Street in that city, has become an unwelcome eyesore for neighbours and may also  be a source of pollution to the area, including the nearby Twelve Mile Creek, a tributary  Lake Ontario

Hosted by the citizen-based Coalition for a Better St. Catharines

Posted November 23rd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

A Call-Out from the Coalition for a Better St. Catharines

St. Catharines, Ontario – We’ve Learned A Lot About Conditions At The Former GM Site And Why It’s So Important To The Community To Clean It Up Now. We’ll Be Sharing That Information With You At A Virtual Information Session On Wednesday, November 25 At 7 P.M..

Dozens Of Highly Toxic Industrial Contaminants Are Present On And Under The Former GM Factory Site On Ontario Street. Recent Evidence Has Indicated That Some Of These Industrial Chemicals Including Pcbs And Asbestos May Be Leaking Off The Site And Possibly Exposing The Community To A Dangerous Health Hazard. Continue reading

A Big Call-Out to Trudeau Government to Strengthen Canada’s Toxic Pollution Laws

More Measures  Urgently Needed to Protect Canadians From Poisons in Commercial and Industrial Products

A News Release from Beautycounter, Breast Cancer Action Quebec, Canadian Association Of Physicians For The Environment, Canadian Environmental Law Association, David Suzuki Foundation, Ecojustice, Environmental Defence, Foundation For Resilient Health, Nature Canada And Women’s Healthy Environments Network

Posted November 23rd, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Virtual Hill Days call on federal government to keep its promise to strengthen toxics and pollution law Environmental, health and clean cosmetics groups ask for immediate reform to the Canadian Environmental Protection Act.

Ottawa, Ontario – Parliament must prioritize reform of the outdated Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA), says a coalition of environmental, physicians, women’s health and clean cosmetics advocacy groups.

The groups are organizing Virtual Days on the Hill for a Toxic-Free and Healthy Environment this week. Hundreds of concerned citizens are joining forces to call on the federal government to fulfil its promise to reform the country’s two-decade old pollution prevention and toxic chemicals law. Continue reading

Ford Rewards Ontario’s Front-Line Health Workers With No Pay if they are Exposed to COVID-19

So much for the Ontario Premier’s B.S. Rhetoric about ‘Front-line Heroes’

“Sending front-line workers home without pay shows flagrant disrespect for their work, livelihood, and safety.”                             – from an Open Letter from Niagara Centre MPP Jeff Burch to Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s Health Minister Christine Elliot

An Open Letter to Ontario’s Ford Government from Niagara Centre NDP MPP Jeff Burch

Posted November 19th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

OPEN LETTER

Dear Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliot,

Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott. How would Elliott and her Tory cronies  like it if they were sent home with no pay if they were exposed on their job, or whatever it is they do, to someone who tested positive with COVID-19?

I am writing to you today (November 19th, 2020) regarding an urgent ongoing situation within the Niagara Health System.

It has come to my attention that NHS staff are being sent home without pay when exposed to COVID-19.

It is my understanding that your Ministry has directed this change and that Niagara Health can no longer do straight pay for staff directed by the employer to go into isolation.

This practice is a marked departure from the province’s direction during the first wave, where staff in self-isolation would continue to receive their full pay.

We have heard from front-line hospital staff who report that after being exposed to COVID in the line of duty, they are sent home without pay. Continue reading

Citizens Not Getting Enough Information & Time to Respond to “Environmentally Significant Proposals – Ontario Auditor General

‘Province’s Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks Needs to Lead by Example When It Comes to Protecting Ontario’s Environment’

A News Release from the Office of Ontario’s Auditor General Bonnie Lysy

Posted November 19th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

TORONTO, Ontario – The Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks needs to do more in leading by example on the environmental front by supporting, promoting and administering the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR Act) in a more fulsome manner, concluded Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk in her 2020.

Annual Report of Environmental Value-for-Money Audits and the Operation of the Environmental Bill of Rights. The report found examples by multiple government ministries of non-compliance with their responsibilities under the EBR Act that prevented its effective operation in 2019/20.

The report states some ministries are still not posting environmentally significant proposals on the Environmental Registry or giving the public enough time to respond when they do. Continue reading

Auditor General’s Report Confirms Ford Tories’ Will Destroy Climate as a Favour to Their Insiders

“(Ontario Premier Doug) Ford’s wilful ignorance about the imminent dangers of the climate crisis is already making all Ontarians less safe, and the consequences for future generations – our children and our grandchildren – will be unbearable if we don’t change course now.”                                                                       – Ontario NDP Climate Crisis Critic Peter Tabuns

A News Release from Ontario’s NDP Official Opposition Party

Posted November 18th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Ontario Premier Doug Ford, right, and his Tory pal from Alberta, Premier Jason Kenney, favour the tar sands over addressing a potentially catastrophic climate emergency.

QUEEN’S PARK – Ontario NDP Climate Crisis critic Peter Tabuns and Environment critic Ian Arthur released this statement in response to the Ontario Auditor General’s report of the Ford government’s handling of the environment:

“The auditor general’s report puts into stark terms the disturbing reality that Ontarians face under the Ford government: we have a premier dragging us backwards in the fight against the climate crisis. Doug Ford is willing to destroy the environment in his quest to do favour after favour for insiders.

Ford has tried to pave over the Greenbelt three times. He cancelled Ontario’s cap and trade program illegally, and his government continues to use the pandemic as cover to ram through laws and Ministerial Zoning Orders that attack environmental protections.

Continue reading

Ontario’s Auditor General Takes a Blow Torch to Ford Government’s Deplorable Environmental Record

r Doug Ford’s Tories are continuing to spend large sums of tax dollars fighting the Ottawa’s efforts to place a price on climate ravaging carbon emissions

‘This (Ford) government has axed practically every climate program in Ontario, taken the federal government to court to block climate action, violated the Constitution with their misleading carbon tax stickers, and failed to deliver on any elements of their environmental plan intended to reduce emissions.’

‘Not only is the Ford government failing to protect natural spaces and endangered species, but they are moving to kneecap Conservation Authorities, so developers can build warehouses on wetlands.’

A Statement from Environmental Defence’s Programs Director, Keith Brooks, on the Auditor General’s scathing report on Ontario’s track record on the environment

Posted November 18th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Ontario Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk issues scathing report on Ford government’s environment record

Ontario continues to play pretend with its Made-In-Ontario Environmental Plan, while its actions – and lack thereof – show that the province has no intention of actually protecting the environment.

Not only is the government failing to protect natural spaces and endangered species, but they are moving to kneecap Conservation Authorities, so developers can build warehouses on wetlands.

When it comes to climate change, to say the achievement of Ontario’s 2030 target is at risk is putting it very generously. Continue reading

New COVID-19 Restrictions Announced for Welland Hospital Site

Extended Care Unit taking additional measures to protect residents

A News Release from Niagara Health, Niagara, Ontario’s amalgamated system of hospitals

Posted November 18th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara Health’s Welland, Ontario hospital site

Niagara, Ontario – With the Niagara region in the Orange-Restrict category of the Ontario Government’s five-stage COVID Response Framework, general visitation is no longer permitted for residents in the Extended Care Unit (ECU) at Niagara Health’s Welland Site.

This is a necessary measure to protect the safety of our residents in the long-term care home.

Recognizing the importance of our residents having support from their loved ones, families may now designate up to two Essential Caregivers per resident. Essential Caregivers provide direct care or support to the resident in the home. Continue reading

Western New York Moves Forward With Waterfront Improvements On U.S. Side of Niagara River

“This year (as we face the COVID-19 pandemic) gave us a renewed appreciation for our outdoor spaces including the mental and physical healing it provides to the public.”                     – Buffalo, New York area Congressman Brian Higgins on the benefits of improving waterfront environments for people

Buffalo, New York area Congressman Brian Higgins

A News Release from the Office of Buffalo, New York area Congressman Brian Higgins

Posted November 18th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Congressman Higgins Welcomes Big Plans to Invest $44.3 Million in Buffalo’s Waterfront Over the Next 5 Years

Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) welcomed adoption of a General Project Plan (GPP) for Buffalo’s Outer Harbor by Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation (ECHDC) at their meeting on November 9, 2020.

Higgins said, “This year gave us a renewed appreciation for our outdoor spaces including the mental and physical healing it provides to the public. 

“We have helped to deliver incremental improvements to Western New York’s waterfront but to sustain the momentum we cannot rest on what has been accomplished, there is still work ahead for this community to reach its full waterfront potential. We appreciate Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation’s focus and look forward to this continued progress.” Continue reading

Let’s Fight Together to Save Ontario’s Provincially Significant Wetlands

Ford’s Conservatives want to take legal power away from the Conservation Authorities (including the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority in our Niagara Region) who are responsible for protecting our wetlands, forests and wildlife habitat.

A Call-Out to All of Us from Ontario’s Green Party

Posted November 17th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Ford government is moving to further weaken Ontario’s environmental protections for the benefit of developers anxious to pave over more of our natural heritage

Earlier this November, we address the news about Ford’s approval of a 4-million square foot warehouse on top of a sensitive wetland in Durham.

THINGS HAVE GOTTEN WORSE.

Buried in the Ford government’s November 5th budget is a plan to do this sort of thing everywhere in Ontario.

Conservatives want to take legal power away from the Conservation Authorities (including the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority in our Niagara Region) who are responsible for protecting our wetlands, forests and wildlife habitat. Continue reading

Ford Tories Rush Through Bill to Protect Their Corporate Pals from Liability in For-Profit Long-Term Care Home Industry

“To the families who are directly impacted: we feel your heartbreak and your anger. We promise to continue to do everything we can do to improve care, protect those who rely on our health care system for their care, and finally achieve some accountability and justice for all that has happened”                         – Natalie Mehra, Executive Director, Ontario Health Coalition

A Message from the Ontario Health Coalition, a province-wide citizens group advocating for quality public health care

Posted November 17th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Ontario Health Coalition Executive Director Natalie M

Dear all members and supporters,

The Ontario Legislature just voted on Bill 218, the law that indemnifies for-profit long-term care homes among other for liability for their negligence in the pandemic. The Ford government MPPs voted for Bill 218 and the NDP and Liberals voted against it. The Bill passed.

One of the Opposition Parties requested a recorded vote: the result was 52 ayes and 38 nays.

The NDP had brought an amendment earlier in the Standing Committee to carve out long-term care and retirement homes that the Conservative MPPs used their majority to vote down.

The message to the long-term care industry is that they will not be held legally liable for negligence and that they are not required even to act with the normal requirement which, prior to this law, would have required a reasonable and competent effort to protect residents from harm from COVID-19. Continue reading

Ford Tories Moving To Shield Ontario’s Private Long-Term Care Home Operators from Liability

Ontario Health Coalition Calls for Probe  Into Ford Government’s Alleged Financial Ties With For Profit Long-Term Care Industry

A News Release from the Ontario Health Coalition, a province-wide citizens advocacy group for quality public health care

Posted November 16th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

One last urgent push to try to stop Bill 218 that indemnifies for-profit LTC from liability for negligence in COVID-19

The Ontario Ford government’s Bill 218, which makes it more difficult to sue for-profit long-term care and retirement homes, is scheduled for Third (and final) Reading in the Legislature on Tuesday but late Friday we were advised that the matter may come on for a vote as early as Monday afternoon.

We are launching a complaint to the Integrity Commissioner to look into conflicts of interest between government MPPs who have received donations from the long-term care industry.

We are also asking that the Commissioner investigate an array of Ministers, the Premier and high-profile decision makers and advisors in the Ford government and their ties to the for-profit industry and their role in pushing this legislation that makes it harder for families who have lost loved ones to sue the long-term care homes owners. Continue reading

Trump Is U.S. History’s Biggest Loser

“For the next two months (though), this Biggest Loser will hold us all hostage. …His virus will kill countless thousands. His greed will further ravage an already devastated economy. His racism will more deeply poison our national spirit. His madness will pillage our mother Earth. His complete lack of morality, compassion, and empathy will forever cheapen our national spirit. His utter depravity will threaten us all with eco-nuclear extinction.”

By Harvey Wasserman, Reader Supported News

Posted November 15th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

It’s over!!!

( … except for the next two months of residual rape and pillage.)

Donald Trump will not be re-inaugurated on January 20, 2021.

This could not have been said with certainty mere days ago. Our nation and the world have rightfully taken to dancing in the streets. We have dethroned a dictator for all to see.

For the rest of human history, the overthrow of Donald Trump can serve as a shining example of an angry public successfully disposing of a despicable tyrant. Continue reading

Changes To Ontario’s Conservation Authority Act Will Impact NPCA Watershed Protection Programs in Niagara

Provincial Changes To Conservation Authorities Act Will Impact NPCA Watershed Management Approach And Progress Made On Auditor General Recommendations

A Response from Chandra Sharma, CAO of the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority, to Plans by Ontario’s Ford Government to Gut & Scale the NPCA and 35 other Conservation Authorities across the Province like a Lake Trout

Posted November 14th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

NPCA CAO Chandra Sharma finally responds to Ford government’s plans to eviscerate Conservation Authorities. Is her response strong enough?

Niagara, Ontario – (The Ford government’s) Bill 229 contains new rules for Board appointments, changes to conservation authorities’ planning role and creation of new Ministerial powers

On November . 5the , the Province of Ontario tabled omnibus budget measures Bill 229, which proposes fundamental changes to the Conservation Authorities Act and to the conservation authorities’ role in land use planning.

These changes will significantly compromise and in some cases, completely change the role of conservation authorities to protect Ontario’s environment and ensure people and property are safe from natural hazards.

“The recent COVID-19 pandemic brought home the critical need for investment in green infrastructure for the health and well being of our communities. We anticipate provincial support and amendments that enable us to carry on with this important work,” says Chandra Sharma, CAO/Secretary-Treasurer at Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA). Continue reading

Doug Ford’s “Lies” Push Ontario To Disaster – Ontario Liberal Party Leader

A Statement from Ontario Liberal Leader Steven Del Duca

Posted November 13th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Ontario Liberal Leader Steven Del Duca

TORONTO – Steven Del Duca, Leader of the Ontario Liberal Party, made the following statement:

It’s been revealed that (Ontario Premier) Doug Ford ignored advice from Public Health Ontario, lied to us and said his plan was backed by doctors. He betrayed all of us, and he needs to take a long look in the mirror and ask himself how Ontario could ever trust him again.

Ontario is headed towards disaster, with a staggering 6,000 daily COVID cases projected by December.

Doug Ford told us he was acting on the advice of doctors, but he lied and he cost lives.

Just a few weeks ago Doug Ford was bragging about the progress his government was making. Meanwhile, he was secretly loosening restrictions while top doctors were giving him dire warnings. Thousands are now dead, with 71 deaths in nursing homes this week alone. Continue reading

A Salute to Remembrance Day, Canada/Veterans Day, U.S.A. – 2020

“Where Have All The Flowers Gone?   Long Time Passing (and) When Will We Ever Learn”

Posted by Doug Draper on Niagara At Large
November 11th, 2020

Few songs have touched more movingly on the tragedy of war than this one, written by the late great American folksinger and activist Pete Seeger. Click on the screen below to listen and watch one of literally thousands of performances of ‘Where Have All The Flowers Gone’ –

In 2018, in the last municipal  elections across Niagara , less than 50 per cent and in some cases, including St. Catharines, Niagara Falls and Welland, less than 40 per cent of eligible voters actually bothered to vote.

That same year, in a provincial election that saw Doug Ford and his Tories win a majority number of seats – enough to allow him to run Ontario like a virtual dictator – the total voter turnout was about 57 per cent, with Ford’s Tories receiving only 40 per cent of those votes.

The First World War memorial in Welland, Ontario’s Chippawa Park. File Photo by Doug Draper

Wearing a poppy for a few days each November is nice, but it is far from enough.

And it is only empty tokenism if so few people in our municipalities and province do not participating in the democratic process.

That is no way to honour those who served and sacrificed in past wars, let alone those who are serving now.

We face many challenges in this greater Niagara Region, and in the provinces and states we live in on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border.

Please make a pledge to get more involved in your communities and in the democratic systems we are blessed with, thanks to those who fought and died for them.

Lest We Forget

  • Doug Draper, Niagara At Large

NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.

“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders

Ford Government’s Changes to Conservation Authorities Act Trigger Red Flags for Conservation Ontario

“If nothing else, pandemic conditions this year have certainly reinforced how much we rely on a healthy environment for our own well-being. It’s important that conservation authorities are able to continue to protect our natural environment and ensure the safety of Ontario residents.”                                                             – Kim Gavine, General Manager, Conservation Ontario

A News Release from Conservation Ontario, the umbrella body for the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority (NPCA) and 35 other Conservation Authorities across the province

Posted November 10th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Kim Gavine, General Manager, Conservation Ontario

Conservation Ontario and the conservation authorities (CAs) are reviewing the Province’s changes to the Conservation Authorities Act (CA Act) which were released (this past November 5th) in the 2020 Ontario Budget.

“There are a number of changes that we feel could have significant impact on conservation authorities, and on their watershed management responsibilities,” said Kim Gavine, General Manager of Conservation Ontario (CO).

Conservation Ontario is the association which represents Ontario’s 36 conservation authorities. The CA Act has been under review by the Province since April 2019.

Earlier this year, the Minister of Environment, Parks and Conservation (MECP) hosted a series of five consultation meetings across the province with invited representatives primarily from municipalities, conservation authorities and agriculture, landowner and development sectors. Conservation Ontario was a presenter at these sessions. Continue reading

2020 Niagara Economic Summit Tackles Recovery And Rebuilding

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s summit will be held virtually over three separate sessions

First Panel –  including Niagara Regional Chair Jim  Bradley among panelists – scheduled for 0 a.m. this Tuesday, November 10th –  will address the current economic picture in Canada, in Ontario, and in Niagara

An Invite from the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Posted November 10th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario –  2020 is the year that everything changed, and all the forecasts and models we had built had to be abandoned in the face of a global pandemic and the resulting economic downturn.

With the world still in the second wave of that pandemic and many facts about the way it has affected our economy still coming to light, the 2020 Summit assesses where we are now, how we got there, and where we can go as we turn our thoughts to recovery and the future.

The first panel, held at 10 a.m. on November 10, will address the current economic picture in Canada, Ontario, and Niagara, as well as examining the uneven impact of the pandemic across different industries and demographic groups. Continue reading

Ontario’s Ford Government Making Disastrous Changes to Province’s Conservation Act

Ford Moves to Strip Citizen Voices from NPCA & Other Conservation Authority Boards, and Weaken Conservation Authorities’ Voice in Development Proposals

A News Commentary by Liz Benneian, a citizen activist in Niagara, Ontario, and leading member of the citizen-based groups, A Better Niagara, Biodiversity and Climate Action Niagara and Ontariogreen

Posted November 9th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Hidden in the Ford government’s budget bill(tabled this past November 5th) are changes to the Conservation Act that have special importance to the citizens of Niagara including that only elected Councillors can be appointed to the board.

In its ongoing war against environmental protection in Ontario, Ford government is moving to eviscerate our province’s Conservation Authorities, including the citizen voices on our Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority board.

That’s what we had before the last municipal election. It didn’t work out so well. The same corrupt cabal that made a mess out of our Regional government, took over the Conservation Authority, got rid of a lot of experienced, qualified staff, hired their friends and turned the organization into a rubber stamp for the development industry.

That’s why Niagara’s citizens voted them out of office. That’s why there was a very critical Auditor General’s report on the NPCA (Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority).

That’s why citizens advocated to have some citizens appointed to the Conservation Authority’s board. And the newly elected municipal and Regional Council listened. 

Continue reading

‘Democracy Is Coming to the U.S.A.’ – the late Leonard Cohen

A Brief Commentary by Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper

Posted November 9th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Leonard Cohen

Believe it or not, four years have now passed since one of Canada’s greatest gifts to the world – poet, songwriter, singer Leonard Cohen – passed away on November 7th, 2016 at age 82.

I was thinking of Leonard just days ago, as our American neighbours and the world were waiting and waiting for enough votes to be counted to declare Joe Biden and Kamala Harris the next president and vice-president of the United States.

And hallelujah, for the sake of the United States and the world, this past Saturday, November 7th, it happened – a day that will live in history as the beginning of the end of Trump’s reign of chaos and terror, and the most monstrous presidency in close to two and a half centuries of American history. Continue reading

Canada’s Prime Minister Congratulates Joe Biden On U.S. Presidential Election Win

Then Vice-President Joe Biden with Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, during better days for Canada-U.S. relations during a visit to Ottawa in 2018

A Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the result of the U.S. presidential election

Posted November 7th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I congratulate Joe Biden and Kamala  Harris on their election as the next President and Vice President of the United  States of America.

“Canada and the United States enjoy an extraordinary relationship – one that is  unique on the world stage. Our shared geography, common interests, deep personal connections, and strong economic ties make us close friends, partners, and  allies.

“We will further build on this foundation as we continue to keep our  people safe and healthy from the impacts of the global COVID-19 pandemic, and  work to advance peace and inclusion, economic prosperity, and climate action  around the world. Continue reading

Ford Government Continues to Give Bum’s Rush to Renewable Energy

Ford’s Budget Offers Billion-Dollar Subsidies to  Energy Pigs

A News Release from the Ontario Clean Air Alliance

Posted November 7th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

**You’re now helping to pay the electricity bills of Ontario’s biggest companies**

Why in hell would this Trump-like clown care about energy conservation and reneable energy in the middle of a globla climate emergency

This past week, the Ontario government unveiled whopping new subsidies for large electricity consumers. Taxpayers will now be shelling out $6.2 billion a year to lower electricity rates for businesses and consumers.

This subsidy is more than double what the previous government introduced, which Doug Ford said at the time was “the wrong thing to do.”

The Ford government’s new $6.2 billion subsidy will be responsible for 16% of Ontario’s $38.5 billion provincial deficit in 2020-21. Despite these massive subsidies for electricity consumption, residential electricity rates rose by 2% at the beginning of this month to help pay for the re-building OPG’s and Bruce Power’s aging nuclear reactors.

And get ready for more increases: According to OPG, its price for nuclear energy must rise by 74% by 2025 to pay for the Darlington Re-Build; Bruce Power’s price of nuclear energy could rise by an additional 57% to pay for the re-building of six of its reactors. Continue reading

Here’s Praying Trump’s Reign of Terror on Earth’s Climate is Almost Over

Trump Administration Officially Cuts U.S. Out of Paris Climate Agreement

“In the East, it could be the COLDEST New Year’s Eve on record. Perhaps we could use a little bit of that good old Global Warming that our Country, but not other countries, was going to pay TRILLIONS OF DOLLARS to protect against. Bundle up!”                                                                                  – U.S. President Donald Trump, on December 28th, 2017, in one of the self-described “stable genius’s” all-too-many bundles of wisdom to his tens-of-millions of followers on Twitter.

A News Commentary by Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper

Posted November 5th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

We were warned, weren’t we?

Everyone from successful New York City business executives who could see through Trump many years ago, when he was a con man firing everyone from Meat Loaf to Gary Busey on his reality TV show ‘The Apprentice’, to his estranged niece Mary Trump, a Ph.D psychologist and author of the best-selling book: ‘Too Much and Never; How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man’, have warned that if this self-serving wing nut sees himself going down, he may try to take everyone and everything down with him.

So why not begin – just one day after this November 3rd’ss U.S. election that hopefully means the end of his dangerous and destructive presidency – by following through on his years-old pledge to pull the United States out of a 2016 Paris Climate Agreement signed by more than 190 nations around the world, including Canada. Continue reading

Make Pandemic Pay Permanent for Ontario’s Frontline Workers

Niagara Falls NDP MPP Wayne Gates is standing up for the workers on the frontlines of COVID-19 whose pandemic pay was ripped away

A News Release from the Constituency Office of Niagara NDP MPP Wayne Gates

Posted November 4th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Front-line employees continue to work and risk their well-being in grocery chains like this, owned by the billionaire Weston family, which has been among those making record or near record profits during this pandemic. File photo by Doug Draper

QUEEN’S PARK, Ontario  – NDP MPP Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls) is standing up for the workers on the frontlines of COVID-19 whose pandemic pay was ripped away while they are still putting their lives on the line every day.

“The major companies, like Loblaws, that employ frontline workers called them heroes and raised their pay. However, once the cameras were off – these companies ripped away the pay increases. They make record profits while workers carry on under the same low wage conditions,” says Gates.

Continue reading

American Filmmaker, Activist Michael Moore On Nail-Biting U.S. Election

“Sadly, as to why our fellow Americans did not repudiate Trump yesterday in a massive way, as to why nearly 70 million Americans still embrace a bigot and a psychopath — well, we must have that discussion soon as to who we REALLY are.”          – Michael Moore

American filmmaker and poltical activist Michael Moore

A Commentary by American filmmaker, author and political activist Michael         Moore, from Michael Moore’s Facebook Page

Posted November 4th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

THERE IS NO CRYING IN TRUMP REMOVAL!

I am writing this at 7:45am on Nov 4 and here’s how I see it. First, I just slept like a baby in my chair with the TV blaring. For 3 hours.

That’s cause I dozed off at 4:30am knowing this: Millions of ballots — all of them from early and mail-in voting which the majority of Democrats did — had not been counted! In Pennsylvania, I knew that the majority of those 2.2 MILLION uncounted ballots were from registered Democrats.

When I fell asleep, the map of Michigan showed Flint as red! Hahaha!!

And here’s the bottom line:

Continue reading

Niagara Region Taking ‘Big Steps’ To Address Homelessness

“By knowing who is experiencing chronic homelessness we are able to better provide programs and supports for people in need.” ~ Niagara Regional Chair Jim Bradley

News from Niagara’s Regional Government

Posted November 4th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Niagara, Ontario – Niagara Region is taking a big step toward addressing the issue of homelessness locally.

Built for Zero Canada, a national campaign to work toward an end to long-term, complex homelessness, has recognized Niagara Region for meeting all the requirements needed to achieve a Quality By-Name List. A By-Name List provides up-to-date information on people experiencing homelessness across the region.

This list provides data on clients to support coordinated access to housing resources available through providers in Niagara’s Homeless-Serving System, as well as system-level information such as the number of people actively experiencing chronic homelessness. Continue reading

Do It America. For The Sake of Your Country & the World – FIRE TRUMP!

Today is the Day to Vote this Monster Out

A Brief Comment from Doug Draper at Niagara At Large

Posted on November 3rd, 2020, Election Day in the United States

The danger that Trump poses and the carnage that he has already wrought – not only on the health and welfare of people in his own country, but to the world – is, without a word of hyperbole, heart-wrenching and mind-blowing.

From the dishevelling of democratic institutions, the overturning of truth, the total disregard for facts and science,  and the assault on fundamental human justice and decency, to the dismantling of environmental programs in ways that could harm property and lives on this planet for generations to come, the day of reckoning for this morally bankrupt con man and his legions of cultists and enablers – a day that should mark the beginning of the end of Trump’s reign of chaos, suffering, death and terror – may, at long last, be here.

It is Election Day in America and let’s hope and pray that enough of our American friends and neighbours do the right thing, and purge this monster and his crime family from our collective lives. Continue reading