Five stories in the news for Wednesday, March 7
FEDS EYE TOUGHER SCREENING OF GUN OWNERS
The federal government has been eyeing changes that would allow authorities to more quickly identify people considered unfit to have guns for reasons such as mental instability or violent behaviour. An internal memo shows the Liberals plan to introduce legislation in coming weeks to fulfil platform promises on firearms — including a requirement for “enhanced background checks” for anyone seeking to buy a handgun or other restricted weapon. The federal memo, released under the Access to Information Act, indicates the government could go further, beefing up screening of those who already have guns “by allowing authorities to reassess licence eligibility in a more timely fashion.”
MISSING, MURDERED INDIGENOUS WOMEN INQUIRY IN LABRADOR TODAY
The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls begins two days of hearings in Labrador today. About 23 family members and survivors are expected to address the hearings in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, although most will be in private. The federal government set up the inquiry in December 2015 to address the high number of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. The commissioners began the inquiry in September 2016 and were hoping to issue a final report by the end of 2018, but are formally asking for two more years to finish their work.
TINA FONTAINE’S FAMILY STILL LOOKING FOR ANSWERS
Tina Fontaine’s family is still looking for answers after the man accused of her murder was found not guilty. Thelma Favel, Tina’s great-aunt who raised her for most of her life on the Sagkeeng First Nation, sat in the court room during the three-week trial of Raymond Cormier. She listening to testimony from experts, people who knew Tina and audio recordings of the accused speaking about the teenager. Favel says she is still struggling not knowing what happened in the weeks before Tina’s body was found in the Red River, wrapped in a duvet filled with rocks in 2014.
B.C. WOMAN RESPONDS TO EXPERIMENTAL CANCER TREATMENT
A North Vancouver woman with stage four pancreatic cancer has responded so well to an experimental therapy that doctors studying her case hope to help other patients diagnosed with what’s often a deadly disease. Susan Stewart began taking experimental medication in January 2017 and also had her pancreatic tumour sequenced as part of a study in Vancouver by the Terry Fox Research Institute. The aim of that study is to sequence tumours and provide personalized treatment for patients based on their particular subtype of the disease. Stewart’s oncologist says C-T scans show her response to experimental therapy has been fantastic.
MOST CANADIANS CAN’T NAME ACHIEVEMENTS OF FAMOUS WOMEN: POLL
A new poll suggests Canadians have a lot to learn about the accomplishments of some of the country’s most famous women. The survey conducted by Ipsos on behalf of Historica Canada found the majority of Canadians couldn’t name the achievements of such famous women as Emily Carr and Lucy Maud Montgomery. Only 37 per cent of respondents to the poll could identify Carr’s accomplishments as a painter, while only 27 per cent knew that Montgomery’s fame sprang from her authorship of such Canadian literary classics as “Anne of Green Gables.”
ALSO IN THE NEWS:
— Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer continues a trip to London that’s focused on Canada-U.K. trade.
— Court martial in Halifax for master seaman Daniel Cooper, accused of sexual assault and ill treatment of a subordinate.
— Statistics Canada releases the Canadian international merchandise trade for January and the labour productivity, hourly compensation and unit labour cost for the fourth quarter.
— The Bank of Canada makes its target rate announcement.
— Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale hosts a one-day National Summit on Gun and Gang Violence.
— Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attends an International Women’s Day event in Toronto.
— Finance Minister Bill Morneau speaks to the Calgary Chamber of Commerce.
— The spring sitting of the Manitoba legislature begins.