Canada briefs – November 2

The Royal Canadian Legion has named a New Brunswick woman whose son was killed in Afghanistan the Silver Cross Mother for the coming year.

New Brunswick woman named Silver Cross Mother

OTTAWA — The Royal Canadian Legion has named a New Brunswick woman whose son was killed in Afghanistan the Silver Cross Mother for the coming year.

Mabel Girouard of Bathurst will lay a wreath in Ottawa on Remembrance Day on behalf of all mothers who have lost children in the Canadian military.

Her son was Chief Warrant Officer Robert Michael Girouard, former regimental sergeant major of the 1st Battalion, The Royal Canadian Regiment at Canadian Forces Base Petawawa in Ontario.

The 46-year-old soldier was killed when a suicide bomber drove his car into a convoy of military vehicles in Kandahar on Nov. 27, 2006.

The 29-year veteran of the Forces was awarded the Meritorious Service Cross posthumously.

His mother will lay a wreath at the National War Memorial on Nov. 11 and will hold the position of Silver Cross Mother until next October.


Volunteer dumped for quip about Williams’ penis

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Political discourse in Newfoundland and Labrador hit another low as the government dumped a volunteer who quipped about the premier’s penis size on Facebook.

The flap comes just days after Liberal Opposition spin doctor Craig Westcott apologized for an email questioning whether Danny Williams is mentally ill or in the last stages of syphilis.

Rural Development Minister Shawn Skinner said Monday that Pamela Pardy Ghent was removed from the province’s rural secretariat for a status update she posted early Sunday morning on Facebook.

It said: “Thinking about sending Liz (Elizabeth Matthews, communications director for Williams) an email asking her to disclose the premier’s penis size….legit question, right? You know, small man syndrome made it to the psych (psychology) books, didn’t it? Besides, what could it hurt? Everyone can take a joke, right?”

Apparently not. Ghent said she got a call Sunday night from a senior rural development official with the provincial government who advised her she was being dismissed.

Ghent’s Facebook friends include various provincial cabinet ministers. On Monday, Skinner confirmed the off-colour posting prompted her ouster.

“I just felt it was totally inappropriate and it was a wrong thing for her to do,” he said in an interview. “She should have thought before she posted that up.”

But Ghent, a freelance writer from Harbour Mille who devoted hours to helping hurricane Igor victims on the Burin Peninsula, says the comment was never meant as a dig at Williams or Matthews. The update was an attempt to poke fun at the absurdity of the Westcott email, she said.


Ottawa keeps 2011 immigration levels steady

OTTAWA — The federal government wants to keep Canada’s immigration levels steady next year but change the mix of newcomers, limiting economic immigrants and boosting the number of spouses and children.

In its annual report to Parliament on immigration, the Conservative government says it aims to take in between 240,000 and 265,000 new permanent residents next year.

That’s the same target as this year and last. But Immigration Minister Jason Kenney is looking to cut the economic class of immigrants by about 5,000 people — despite highlighting the growing dependence of the Canadian workforce on immigrant labour.

Instead, he is increasing the target range for spouses and children, to a high of 48,000 — up from 45,000 in 2010.

He is also expecting the number of refugees to rise, partly because the government has committed to doubling the number of refugees it selects and resettles from overseas camps.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A vial of the Medicago vaccine sits on a surface. CARe Clinic, located in Red Deer, has been selected to participate in the third phase of vaccine study. (Photo courtesy www.medicago.com)
Red Deer clinical research centre participating in plant-based COVID-19 vaccine trial

A Red Deer research centre has been selected to participate in the… Continue reading

Asymptomatic testing will now be available for "priority groups" who are most likely to spread the COVID-19 virus to vulnerable or at-risk populations. File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS
Red Deer jumps to 449 active COVID-19 cases on Sunday

1,516 new cases identified in Alberta

The QEII was closed Sunday morning due to a pole fire. (Photo courtesy City of Red Deer)
UPDATE: QEII near Red Deer reopens

The QEII has been reopened after being closed due to a pole… Continue reading

Innisfail RCMP are investigating a single-vehicle crash that happened west of Bowden on March 21, 2021. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Bashaw RCMP investigate fatal collision in central Alberta

Bashaw RCMP are investigating after a fatal collision Saturday afternoon. Police were… Continue reading

A damaged unicorn statue is shown in a field outside of Delia, Alta. in this undated handout photo. It's not often police can report that a unicorn has been found, but it was the truth Saturday when RCMP said a stolen, stainless-steel statue of the mythical beast had been located in a field not far from where he'd been taken. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Mounties get their unicorn; stolen statue of mythical beast found in Alberta field

DELIA, Alta. — It’s not often police can report that a unicorn… Continue reading

Investigators from the Vancouver Police Department were in Chilliwack Saturday, collecting evidence connected to a double homicide. (file photo)
Police investigate shooting death of man outside downtown Vancouver restaurant

Vancouver police say one man was killed in what they believe was… Continue reading

Dr. E. Kwok administers a COVID-19 vaccine to a recipient at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to start registering people 18 years and older for COVID-19 vaccines

VICTORIA — The British Columbia government says it’s inviting people 18 years… Continue reading

San Jose's Tomas Hertl, center, celebrates with teammates Patrick Marleau, left, and Rudolfs Blacers, right, after Hertl scored a goal during the first period of an NHL hockey game against the Minnesota Wild, Friday, April 16, 2021, in St. Paul, Minn. (AP Photo/Stacy Bengs)
Patrick Marleau set to break Gordie Howe’s games record

For Patrick Marleau, the best part about Monday night when he is… Continue reading

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, speaks during a press briefing at the White House, Tuesday, April 13, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Half of U.S. adults have received at least one COVID-19 shot

WASHINGTON — Half of all adults in the U.S. have received at… Continue reading

People are shown at a COVID-19 vaccination site in Montreal, Sunday, April 18, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Federal government to send health-care workers to Ontario, Trudeau says

MONTREAL — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says federal departments and some Canadian… Continue reading

People cross a busy street in the shopping district of Flushing on Tuesday, March 30, 2021, in the Queens borough of New York. Access to the COVID-19 vaccine in the United States is growing by the day. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Kathy Willens
Despite COVID-19 vaccines, Americans in D.C. not feeling celebratory — or charitable

WASHINGTON — This might make Canadians jealous of their American cousins for… Continue reading

A man pays his respects at a roadside memorial in Portapique, N.S. on Thursday, April 23, 2021. RCMP say at least 22 people are dead after a man who at one point wore a police uniform and drove a mock-up cruiser, went on a murder rampage in Portapique and several other Nova Scotia communities. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan
Memorial service in Nova Scotia marks one year since mass shooting started

TRURO, N.S. — A memorial service is planned for today in central… Continue reading

In this April 23, 2016, photo, David Goethel sorts cod and haddock while fishing off the coast of New Hampshire. To Goethel, cod represents his identity, his ticket to middle class life, and his link to one the country's most historic industries, a fisherman who has caught New England's most recognized fish for more than 30 years. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)
‘It’s more than just a fish:’ Scientists worry cod will never come back in N.L.

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — The latest assessment of Atlantic cod stocks, whose… Continue reading

Most Read