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Jewish teachers file antisemitism complaint against B.C. Teachers’ Federation: lawyer

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VANCOUVER – A Vancouver labour lawyer says a group of British Columbia teachers has launched a human rights complaint against their union, saying the BC Teachers’ Federation “has engaged in and enabled antisemitism.”

Paul Pulver, who says he represents BC Teachers Against Antisemitism, filed the complaint with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal over what he calls the “erasure of Jewish and Zionist voices and opinions” within the union and members’ workplaces.

Pulver says in a statement the union’s leadership caused “trauma and fear” among members who have been “intimidated and shamed” by colleagues.

He says the union has “ostracized” the teachers because they’re Jewish or because they hold “currently unpopular views” about Jews, Israel and Hamas’ Oct. 7 attacks.

Pulver says the complaint details more than two dozen examples of antisemitism either caused or enabled by the teachers’ union.

The union did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The statement says the union’s president sent members anti-racism training materials that didn’t mention antisemitism but provided a link to material including a poster that said “Zionists F*ck Off.”

It says the union’s annual general meeting focused on “anti-Jewish and anti-Israel” voices and “excluded, bullied, silenced, and prevented” Jewish teachers from speaking out against “antisemitic motions” proposed at the meeting.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 2, 2024.

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Nova Scotia premier says he skipped Halifax Pride parade because of safety concerns

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HALIFAX – Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston was notably absent from this year’s Halifax Pride parade, and he says he was advised by RCMP not to participate because of safety concerns.

In an emailed statement, the premier says he was not at the parade on Saturday “out of an abundance of caution” and that the decision to skip the event doesn’t diminish his support for the 2SLGBTQ+ community.

Nova Scotia’s Liberal, NDP and Green parties each participated with a parade float, leaving the Progressive Conservatives as the only major political party not represented at the event.

The premier’s office says police recommended that Houston not participate this year out of concern for his safety and that of other participants, but the office declined to provide details about the alleged risk.

Mark Boudreau, a spokesperson with the Progressive Conservatives, says Houston attended the 2022 parade with a float and group of volunteers, adding that he was prepared to do the same in 2023 — but the event that year was cancelled.

Boudreau says the party booked a float for this year but made the “difficult” decision to withdraw.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 23, 2024.

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Trudeau hand-picking candidate in Montreal byelection riles aspiring contenders

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OTTAWA – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s decision to hand-pick a candidate for a riding in an upcoming Montreal byelection isn’t being well-received by three aspiring contenders who spent months campaigning.

The Liberals announced Montreal city Coun. Laura Palestini last week as the party’s candidate in a byelection whose date has yet to be announced for the riding of LaSalle—Émard—Verdun.

Three aspiring candidates — a local school commissioner, an entrepreneur, and a former Quebec Liberal party organizer — denounced the decision, with one calling it “anti-democratic, 100 per cent.”

Liberal campaign co-chair Soraya Martinez Ferrada says it was Trudeau’s decision to prevent party members from choosing the candidate and to instead select Palestini, who represents the LaSalle borough on Montreal city council.

The Liberals have won the riding in all three elections since it was created, with former justice minister David Lametti re-elected with 42.9 per cent of the vote in 2021.

Lametti resigned on Jan. 31, after he was excluded from Trudeau’s cabinet in last summer’s reshuffle.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 23, 2024.

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S&P/TSX composite index down Tuesday morning, U.S. markets rise

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TORONTO – Losses in the energy sector led Canada’s main stock index lower in late-morning trading on Tuesday, while U.S. stock markets rose.

The S&P/TSX composite index was down 50.37 points at 22,822.28.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 29.98 points at 40,445.42. The S&P 500 index was up 16.88 points at 5,581.29, while the Nasdaq composite was up 106.17 points at 18,113.73.

The Canadian dollar traded for 72.63 cents US compared with 72.70 cents US on Monday .

The September crude oil contract was down US$1.59 at US$76.81 per barrel and the August natural gas contract was down six cents at US$2.23 per mmBTU.

The August gold contract was down US$12.40 at US$2,407.10an ounce and the September copper contract was down three cents at US$4.17 a pound.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 23, 2024.

Companies in this story: (TSX:GSPTSE, TSX:CADUSD)

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