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A timeline of COVID-19 in Alberta – Global News

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After nearly a year of the COVID-19 pandemic, Global News is taking a look at some of the milestone moments experienced in Alberta.

January 20: The first COVID-19 test is done in Alberta.

March 5: Alberta Health announces the first case of the virus. Months later, retroactive tests determined the first case was actually February 24.

March 9: “At this point it is likely we will be dealing with this virus worldwide for many months to come.” Chief Medical Officer of Health Doctor Deena Hinshaw made that bleak prediction as she explained all the confirmed cases at the time were travel-related. 

March 12: The first health restrictions were issued, cancelling all gatherings with more than 250 people.

March 14: The City of Edmonton closed rec centres, playgrounds and golf courses.

March 15: On a Sunday afternoon, as thousands of students prepared to go to school the following day, Alberta’s education minister announced all schools and daycares were being closed and every student in Alberta would move to online classes. They would not return for the remainder of the school year.

March 17: Alberta declared a local state of public health emergency.

March 18: “In order to save lives, I have had to make recommendations that will take away livelihoods for many Albertans over the next several weeks to months,” Dr. Hinshaw admitted when asked about the impact restrictions were having on the economy.

March 19: Alberta recorded the first COVID-19 death in the province when a man in his 60s from the Edmonton zone died of the virus.

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March 20: The city of Edmonton declared a local state of emergency.

March 27: The province announced many non-essential businesses would temporarily close and that gatherings would be limited to 15 people.

April 7: Premier Jason Kenney addressed the province in a televised speech warning Albertans about the dangers of the virus.

April 8: The province released modelling showing at least 400 deaths and up to 800,000 Albertans infected by the end of summer.

April 13: Alberta Health expanded testing to include all Albertans with symptoms.

April 22: The first case of COVID-19 is reported on an Alberta First Nation.

April 30: Details of the provincial relaunch were released.

May 4: Scheduled surgeries resumed.

May 14: Stage 1 of the relaunch began for most of Alberta, though Calgary and Brooks had to wait because of high caseloads. Health services like dental offices reopened and restaurants were allowed to operate at half capacity.

May 25: Calgary and Brooks joined the rest of Alberta in Stage 1 of the relaunch.

May 29: Alberta Health expanded testing to include all Albertans with or without symptoms who wanted to receive a test.

June 12: Stage 2 began with businesses like public libraries, wellness services, movie theatres and more reopening.

July 27: “The curve is no longer flat,” Dr. Hinshaw announced as caseloads skyrocketed, prompting questions about whether Alberta reopened too quickly.

August 1: Masks became mandatory in Edmonton and Calgary after the cities introduced bylaws.

August 18: Dr. Hinshaw called rising caseload numbers in Edmonton a “wake-up call” with the area making up almost 66 per cent of new COVID-19 cases.

September 2: Most schools opened with masking and other changes in place in an attempt to slow the spread within the buildings.

September 4: 1 million tests are completed in Alberta.

September 23: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau warned of a fall worse than the spring as cases climbed across Canada including in Alberta.

October 13: The province shifted to appointment-only COVID-19 tests as drop-in testing proved to only account for a small amount of confirmed cases.

October 21: Alberta saw more than 400 cases recorded in a single day, a new record. Premier Kenney went into self-isolation after Municipal Affairs Minister Tracy Allard tested positive for the virus.

October 27: Alberta Health rushed to hire contact tracers after Dr. Hinshaw admitted the existing staff could not keep up with new cases.

November 20: “Our current situation is grim,” Dr. Hinshaw said as Alberta broke record after record with climbing case counts.

November 21: Alberta Health Services said intensive care units across the province were approaching capacity limits as hospitalizations increased.

November 26: Recordings of health meetings were leaked to the CBC and appeared to show tension between Dr. Hinshaw and the Alberta government pandemic response team. Dr. Hinshaw called the leak “a personal betrayal.”

December 8: The province announced new health restrictions banning in-person dining and outdoor gatherings, which would remain in place over the holidays.

December 15: As cases surged and broke new records in Alberta, the first dose of hope was given when health-care workers in Calgary and Edmonton became the first people in the province to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

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The 5 Big Banks in Canada

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Banks in Canada

The Big Five Banks is a term used in Canada to describe the five largest banks: Royal Bank, The Bank of Montreal, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, The Bank of Nova Scotia, and TD Canada Trust.

Occasionally, the term “Big Six Banks” is used, with the sixth bank referring to the National Bank of Canada. As of March 2008, the Big Six Banks and Laurentian Bank of Canada are the largest banks in Canada. The Five Big Banks hold over $100 billion in assets, and they are all based in Toronto. World Atlas provides the following data on each of the Big Five Banks.

1. Royal Bank of Canada

The Royal Bank of Canada is the largest of the Big Five with respect to net revenue (C$12.431 billion in 2018) and capitalization (C$150.35 billion as of early 2020). The Royal Bank of Canada has over 16 million clients worldwide, over 74,000 full-time employees and over 1,300 branches. Founded in 1864 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, the bank financed the lumber and timber industries. It was known as the Merchants Bank of Halifax. The Royal Bank of Canada gives 1% of its income to charity.

2. Toronto-Dominion Bank

The second-largest bank in Canada, the Toronto-Dominion Bank has the most assets, which are valued at C$1.4 trillion as of July 2019. This bank has over 22 million clients worldwide, 85,000 full-time employees and over 1,100 branches. The bank was the result of a merger of the Bank of Toronto and the Dominion Bank in 1955.

3. Bank of Nova Scotia

The Bank of Nova Scotia, or Scotiabank, is the next largest bank in Canada with assets valued at C$998 billion as of late 2019, the revenue of C$28.8 billion in 2018 and capitalization of C$87.55 billion. The bank has over 23 million customers worldwide, 89,000 full-time employees and over 1,000 branches in Canada. This bank offers to trade on both the New York and Toronto Stock Exchanges.

Also founded in Halifax, Nova Scotia—this one in 1832—the bank moved its headquarters to Toronto in 1900 to improve the transAtlantic trade industry.

4. Bank of Montreal

The Bank of Montreal is the fourth largest Canadian bank with C$852.2 billion worth of assets in late 2019, the revenue of C$22.8 billion and capitalization of C$64.81 billion as of early 2020. The bank has over 7 million clients in Canada and 939 branches. The bank has over 47,000 employees. It was founded in 1817 and is the oldest bank in Canada. Throughout crises such as World War I, the Great Depression, World War II, and the 2008 Global Financial Crisis, the Bank has consistently met dividend payments.

5. Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce

The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce has C$597 billion in assets, the revenue of C$17.834 billion for 2018, and capitalization of C$48.01 billion. The bank has over 11 million clients worldwide, 1,100 branches in Canada and over 44,000 full-time employees worldwide. The bank was formed in 1961 when the Canadian Bank of Commerce and the Imperial Bank of Canada merged.

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U.S. lawmakers press GM CEO on California emissions

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General Motors Chief Executive Mary Barra faced questions from U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday on a workers’ vote at a company plant in Mexico and the company’s support for emissions reductions.

Barra met with House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other senior Democrats on Capitol Hill, and touted the company’s decision announced earlier in the day to boost spending on electric and autonomous vehicles to $35 billion through 2025.

“We’re committed to an all-EV future,” Barra said in brief comments to Reuters after the meeting. “We had a lot of conversations about a lot of things that we can do to enable EV adoption.”

Until November, GM backed the Trump administration’s effort to block California from setting tougher emissions standards than the federal government.

Pelosi had expressed disappointment with GM’s support for Republican President Donald Trump’s position on the emissions rules, a source briefed on the matter said, and she urged GM to work with California and the Biden administration to reach the strongest possible vehicle emissions standards.

The administration of Democratic President Joe Biden is set to unveil revised vehicle emissions rules in July.

GM said last week it backs emissions reductions outlined in a 2019 deal struck between California and other major automakers, but wants the federal government to endorse changes to speed the adoption of electric vehicles.

Barra also faced questions about a delayed worker vote at a GM plant in Silao, Mexico.

Mexico’s Labor Ministry scrapped an initial union-led vote in April, citing “serious irregularities,” and later ordered the GM union to hold a new ballot within 30 days of its May 11 statement. No vote has been scheduled

The U.S. Trade Representative’s Office in May asked Mexico to review potential labor abuses at the Silao plant under the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

Last month, U.S. Representatives Dan Kildee, Bill Pascrell and Earl Blumenauer, all Democrats, pressed GM to answer questions about potential abuses in Mexico.

“We want to see some real demonstration of embracing the labor standards in Mexico — more than compliance,” Kildee told Reuters after the meeting. “The situation in Silao — I raised that with Mary — that’s a problem.”

The Democrats urged GM to commit to providing workers with physical copies of the contract, publicly posting contracts and to meet other requirements.

Kildee offered additional steps GM could take to support workers and meet USMCA requirements, and the three lawmakers followed up with a written list of suggested actions, congressional aides said.

The suggestions “would be tangible demonstrations of GM’s commitment to lead on compliance with the new labor standards,” Kildee told Reuters.

Earlier Wednesday, some House lawmakers on a trade panel, including Kildee, had a virtual meeting with Mexico’s ambassador to the United States in which the GM labor issued was raised.

 

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Leslie Adler)

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Presenting Your Professional Experience: Numbers Are Your Friends

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Numbers rule the business world—revenue, headcount, process time, value increase, number of clients, inventory count, profit margin, credit rating, customer satisfaction score. Numbers indicate and measure success or failure, whether a business activity is positive or negative to the bottom line. You’d be hard-pressed to find a business decision made without some factoring in of “the numbers,” be it stats, cost, the potential return on investment.

 

Hiring is a business decision.

 

To make a strong case for yourself (Envision your selling features.) throughout your resume use numbers, the language of business, to quantify your results and establish yourself as someone who can bring value to an employer. Using numbers shows you understand how companies operate and that they exist to make a profit. Most importantly, using results-achieved numbers displays your value.

 

Which job seeker displays better value?

 

Candidate 1: Duties included taking field measurements and maintaining records, setting up and tracking project using Microsoft Project.

 

Candidate 2: Spearheaded the Hazzard County water decontamination project, finishing $125,000 under budget due to a 25% decrease in staff allocation time.

 

Which job seeker gives a clearer picture of their responsibilities?

 

Candidate 1: Supervised team leaders.

 

Candidate 2: Supervised 3 team leaders, collectively responsible for 40 CSRs answering 1,750 – 2,500 calls daily.

 

Which job seeker shows their work ethic?

 

Candidate 1: Completed first editing pass on articles.

 

Candidate 2: Reviewed and evaluated 50 – 75 articles per week, deciding whether to reject the article, forward it to the editorial team, or send it back to the author with revision suggestions.

 

Information quantified means something. Information not quantified is just an opinion. Most resumes are just a list of opinions, thus quantifying your professional experience will set you apart from your competition.

 

TIP: Always use bullets, not paragraphs, to describe your professional experiences.

 

For each position you list on your resume, ask yourself:

 

  • Did I increase my employer’s revenue? How?
  • Did I save my employer money?
  • Did I save time?
  • Was my boss(es), colleagues, staff, customers, vendors, and leadership team members happier because of me?
  • How did I contribute to improving my employer’s business?

 

When answering these questions, quantify (percentage, range, monetary, frequency, before/after comparison, ratio). Creating a resume that WOWs requires filling it with quantified results-rich statements.

 

  • Reduced customer complaints by 47% by implementing a formal feedback system.
  • Improved product delivery time 22% after assigning clarified monthly job tasks to team members.
  • In 2020, grew revenue 33%, and improved gross margin by 22%, by standardizing business operating procedures.
  • Produced $1.75M in cost-savings after renegotiating the company’s supply and service contracts (14 vendors).
  • Built sales organization from the ground up, hiring and training 15 sales representatives within 6 months.
  • In 2019, generated over $7.25M in additional revenue by identifying, pursuing, and securing 4 new international contracts.

 

As I mentioned a few columns back, your resume must clearly and succinctly answer one question: How did you add or bring value to your employers? When it comes to answering this question, numbers are your friends.

 

Something to keep in mind: The king of numbers, the only metric in business that matters, the one that keeps a business alive and profitable, is revenue. As much as possible, throughout your resume and cover letter, demonstrate the results you’ve achieved that were added value to your employer’s financial success.

 

Don’t write on your resume what’s become a cliche, “result-oriented.” Don’t write it on your LinkedIn profile. Don’t say it during an interview. Show your results! “In 2017, I increased sales by 29% by creating upsell opportunities for my 8-member sales team to offer.”

 

Additional tips when bulleting your professional experience:

 

  • Employment dates need to be month/year. Only indicating years is a red flag you’re trying to cover up employment gaps.
  • Under 2 Lines. Your bullets shouldn’t be more than 2 lines.
  • The first 5 – 8 words are critical. When skimming a resume, the reader will likely read the first few words of a bullet then, unless their interest is piqued, move on to the next bullet. The first few words need to be captivating.

 

Next week I’ll cover presenting your education, skills, and certifications. These need to demonstrate your career path, not that you simply attended classes.

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Nick Kossovan, a well-seasoned veteran of the corporate landscape, offers advice on searching for a job. You can send him your questions at artoffindingwork@gmail.com.

 

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