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Monarchists criticize Canada's 'lacklustre' and 'embarrassing' Platinum Jubilee plans – CBC News

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Monarchists in Canada say they’re disappointed with what they call the federal government’s “lacklustre” plans to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, an event that honours the sovereign’s remarkable seven-decade reign.

Monarchists say the federal government’s “indifference” to this historic event — which they see in the shortage of officials events, the lack of a jubilee medal to celebrate community service and a limited three-day royal tour by Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall — amounts to an insult to the Queen’s legacy.

“It’s actually embarrassing. I won’t say shameful but it’s embarrassing. I think we’re a better country than this and I don’t think it represents who we are,” John Fraser, the founder of the Institute for the Study of the Crown in Canada, told CBC News.

“We are the number one dominion so it would have been nice if the federal government had actually shown some interest,” Fraser said, citing Canada’s senior status in the Commonwealth of Nations and close historic ties to the Crown.

Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall visit Canada House in London on May 12, 2022 ahead of their royal tour. (Hannah McKay/Pool via AP Photo)

Canadian Heritage, the federal department that takes the lead on all things royal, has a web page that details what Ottawa has planned for the occasion.

Canada Post has released a stamp. The Royal Canadian Mint has issued a $250 commemorative coin set — the limited run is already sold out. And there will be some sort of exhibit on display at Ottawa’s Chateau Laurier Hotel this summer.

Canadian Heritage will fly banners in the national capital region. Provincial lieutenant governors and territorial commissioners will dedicate some gardens to the Queen.

In the U.K., there will be an extended four-day long weekend in early June with 1,800 public events and 2,000 street parties planned to celebrate the Queen who, after more than 25,000 days on the throne, is the third-longest reigning monarch in world history.

The U.K.’s extensive programme also includes official events like the Trooping of the Colour parade, religious services, a concert at Buckingham Palace and a special running of the Derby for the Queen, a noted horse lover. 

Rower Natalie Mastracci, left, takes a photo of herself with soccer player Diana Matheson as they display their Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medals during a ceremony in Toronto on Friday, December 21, 2012. (Chris Young/Canadian Press)

Australia, another Commonwealth country where the Queen is head of state, has earmarked June 2 to 5 as the period to celebrate Her Majesty’s reign. There will be concerts, special events, “services of thanksgiving,” the illumination of prominent buildings in royal purple and exhibitions nationwide.

There’s also an online directory of community events to mark what the Australian government calls “this truly immense achievement” and to “acknowledge the Queen’s 70 years of dedication and service to Australia.”

In Canada, the federal government announced on Monday — just weeks before other Commonwealth countries are set to celebrate the Queen — a $2 million grant to help communities plan their own events in the months to come.

“For more than 70 years, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has been a model of dedication and a privileged witness to the growth of and accomplishments of Canadians, and to the values that unite us,” Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriquez said in announcing the funds.

He said the funds will “allow Canadians across the country to learn more about our sovereign, celebrate this historic anniversary and reflect on the meaning of public service in today’s society.”

No jubilee medals

The federal government will not issue jubilee medals to Canadians this year, as it did for the Silver, Gold and Diamond Jubilee celebrations in 1977, 2002 and 2012. These medals traditionally are given to a select few to recognize significant contributions and achievements.

Workers prepare for Platinum Jubilee celebrations at Buckingham Palace in London on May 6, 2022. Queen Elizabeth II acceded to the throne on the death of her father King George VI on Feb. 6, 1952, and the Platinum Jubilee bank holiday weekend celebrations will take place June 2 to 5. (Kristy Wigglesworth/AP Photo)

Instead, Ottawa has outsourced the distribution of “jubilee pins” to the Monarchist League of Canada, a private organization, which has been flooded with requests. While jubilee medal recipients are selected, anyone can send away for a pin.

Robert Finch, the dominion chairman of the Monarchist League, said the group already has sent out “tens of thousands” of pins. Canadian Heritage did not order enough pins to keep up with demand, Finch said, and there’s now a growing backlog of some 20,000 requests.

Finch said it’s a sign that, while the government may have planned relatively little, Canadians are eager to celebrate their monarch on this momentous occasion.

“The demand has been absolutely overwhelming. Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought there would be this much demand,” Finch said in an interview with CBC News.

“We just don’t have them to give out. It’s a great problem to have. I’d rather be in this scenario than have a bunch of pins that nobody wants.”

Finch said the Monarchist League “never received a good answer or reasoning as to why Canada shouldn’t have jubilee medals” — a program he said has proven to be “an excellent way to honour and recognize everyday Canadians.”

After more than two years of a gruelling pandemic, Finch said, bestowing medals on overworked health care workers and frontline staff would have been a small but meaningful gesture of appreciation from a grateful country.

“It’s unfortunate. There’s no good reason why we couldn’t have done them,” he said.

Three-day royal tour is a ‘missed opportunity’: monarchist

Charles and Camilla will arrive in Canada today for a three-day royal tour, with stops in Newfoundland and Labrador, Ottawa and Northwest Territories — one of several trips by members of the Royal Family to mark the Platinum Jubilee in the Queen’s realms.

But the short length of the visit and the limited itinerary are a disappointment to royal watchers. By comparison, Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge did an eight-day swing through the Caribbean earlier this year.

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge wave from their aircraft during the departure ceremony at Lynden Pindling International Airport on March 26, 2022 in Nassau, Bahamas, at the end of their eight-day tour of the Caribbean. (Toby Melville/Getty Images)

Finch said the Canadian tour — which was planned by officials at Canadian Heritage with limited input from Clarence House, Prince Charles’s office — skips the country’s largest population centres and snubs Western Canada entirely in favour of “very small and very remote communities.”

“In order for the monarch to maintain a following and a presence in Canada, you have to have members of the Royal Family come to Canada — and they can’t just come for two or three days,” he said. “It’s a missed opportunity.”

Fraser agreed, calling it “a very small and sad tour.”

Fraser said Canada’s jubilee agenda is puzzling because Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is known to have a warm relationship with the reigning monarch and met with her a number of times at Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle and at Commonwealth summits abroad. He has known her for decades, having first met her when his father, Pierre Trudeau, was prime minister.

On her 94th birthday in 2020, Trudeau said Canada was “grateful for her leadership and steadfast commitment to our country and to the Commonwealth” and praised her “extraordinary service, strength and enduring grace.”

Trudeau also called the Queen “a guardian of many of our country’s traditions” and, on her 93rd birthday in 2019, said that “many Canadians feel a deep appreciation for the Queen.”

Queen Elizabeth II attends the Royal Windsor Horse Show in Windsor, England, Friday May 13, 2022. (Steve Parsons/PA via AP Photo)

Even though she keeps to a much more limited agenda these days due to her advanced age, the Queen personally received Trudeau at Windsor Castle earlier this year after recovering from COVID-19.

After that meeting, Trudeau praised her as “insightful and perspicacious as ever” and said she is “very interested in what’s going on in Canada.”

Fraser said a combination of the pandemic and politics is likely to blame for the muted jubilee celebration. Former governor general Julie Payette’s scandalous tenure as vice regal may also have soured the government on royal traditions, he said.

“Liberal governments for the past 30, 40 years — and I vote Liberal often — have basically downplayed the role of the Crown and the monarchy in Canada. It’s in their nature,” he said.

“The Liberals play it down and the Conservatives play it up and that’s bad. It should transcend those kinds of politics.”

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More Charges Dropped Just Days Before Trial Against Activists Who Exposed Animal Cruelty at Excelsior Hog Farm

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ABBOTSFORD, BC – Several criminal charges were dropped by the Crown yesterday against three animal rights activists just days before their four-week trial is set to begin on Monday, June 27. Amy Soranno, Roy Sasano, and Nick Schafer are accused of exposing animal cruelty at Excelsior Hog Farm in Abbotsford, BC in 2019, and still face a combined total of 14 indictable charges of Break and enter and Criminal Mischief. A press conference will be held in front of the BC Supreme Court in Abbotsford on the first day of trial.The Crown gave no explanation when it dropped some of the remaining charges yesterday against the three activists. The Crown similarly dropped all charges last month, without explanation, against a fourth activist, Geoff Regier, after his lawyers argued in a pretrial hearing that police and the BC Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (BCSPCA) had engaged in misconduct.Soranno, Sasano, and Schafer, who together with Regier are calling themselves the Excelsior 4. The three activists could each be sentenced to years in prison if convicted.

What: Press conference & start of four-week trial for the Excelsior 4When: Monday, June 27, press conference at 9am, trial at 10amWhere: BC Supreme Court, 32375 Veterans Way, Abbotsford, BC

“The Excelsior 4 case started three years ago with a total of 21 charges hanging over us,” said Amy Soranno, one of the Excelsior 4 defendants going to trial on Monday. “But before the jury has even been selected, the Crown has dropped all charges against one of us and reduced the number of charges against the rest of us.”Until last month, Regier had faced similar charges for his role in blowing the whistle on Excelsior. In July 2019, Regier made contact with the BCSPCA—the only animal abuse enforcement agency in BC—and provided the private charity with video evidence of criminal animal cruelty at the hog farm. However, instead of recommending charges against Excelsior, the BCSPCA violated its own confidentiality policy in order to turn Regier over to police. The trial comes more than three years after the exposure of animal cruelty at Excelsior, yet the hog farm has never had to answer for the video footage clearly depicting animal abuse. A short video was recently published about the Excelsior 4 case, with an incisive look at how industry has avoided accountability, how the police mishandled evidence, and how the Crown is criminalizing activists. View the 7-minute video here: https://youtu.be/FJGAI02SWzw. “The fact that we still face prison time while Excelsior Hog Farm is free to continue its abusive practices is a mockery of justice,” said Soranno. “This case further illustrates the clear bias against animals and activists by the animal agriculture industry, BCSPCA, and police. Our trial will shine a light on the criminal animal abuse taking place at Excelsior, and the failure to hold them and other animal farms accountable.” The trial also comes more than a year after a Freedom of Information disclosure revealed that the BCSPCA has no capacity to enforce anti-cruelty laws at animal farms in BC. Activists point to the abuse carried out at Excelsior as just one example of the BCSPCA’s failure to take enforcement action despite ample evidence of criminal animal cruelty. “BC needs an enforcement agency that is accountable to the public, not a private charity that is unfit for the role and only answerable to its board of directors,” said Soranno. In addition to demanding that the hog farm be held accountable, the Excelsior 4 and animal rights activists across the province are calling on BC Agriculture Minster Lana Popham to replace the private charity BCSPCA with a more accountable government agency to enforce against animal cruelty in BC. In the interest of transparency and accountability, activists are also demanding the installation of Closed-Circuit TV cameras at all animal agriculture facilities in BC. “With no national regulations governing animal welfare on farms and virtually no government oversight on farms, one of the only ways abuse and mistreatment of farmed animals comes to light is through whistleblower and hidden camera exposés,” said Animal Justice in a recent statement. “Preventing journalists and animal advocates from exposing animal abuse restricts freedom of expression, one of the most important human rights in Canada.” For more information about the Excelsior 4, the story behind their charges, and how to take action against animal cruelty: www.excelsior4.org/.
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Is The Canadian Online Gambling Industry Regulated?

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Like in many western countries, gambling is a popular pastime for many Canadians. Throughout Canada’s evolution, it has strived to give its citizens the freedom of gambling across the provinces. Thanks to this, casinos in the country have grown and thrived over the years, from land-based casinos to the more modern online gambling sites.

Interestingly, government-sponsored sites have also joined the online trend. While other nations globally move from one extreme to the other in terms of their stand on gambling, Canadian lawmakers have generally used an even-handed approach despite the attraction of quick and easy money.

Generally, the country’s laws are flexible while simultaneously protecting the public’s welfare.

 

History of Canada’s Gambling Laws

The ‘90s marked a new age for the gambling industry in Canada because of the computer and internet boom. The first online casinos also launched during this era, and you no longer had to risk gambling in unlicensed casinos in Sweden if you could not access legal casinos. Avid gamblers could simply go online, although they were much fewer in number.

The first reason for this was only a few people owned computers. There was also a concern about the absence of online casino regulations. As the industry expanded, governments began establishing rules to control the sector. Today, traditional and online gambling is prevalent in the country since accessing casinos is much simpler now than before.

 

Is the gambling sector legal in Canada?

Online gambling had been illegal for years in Canada until quite recently. Now, it is legal in Canada in different forms. All the ten provinces and the three territories have the premise to set their own rules. The minimum legal gambling age in Canada is 19, apart from Alberta and Quebec, where players are only allowed to gamble upon turning 18.

All casinos, lotteries, racetracks as well as other gaming establishments must abide by the rules stipulated by their territory or province of operation. As previously mentioned, some forms of gambling are legal in parts of Canada and illegal in others. The country has two gambling laws; the First Nations Law and the Provincial Law.

The latter accords each territory or province control over gambling activities within its jurisdiction. Subsequently, some provincial laws are stricter than the federal regulations.

 

Take away

Today, many Canadians enjoy gambling online, from sports betting and live tables to traditional games like slots. Now that it is legal, you can safely access any reputable and legal casino online and physically.

 

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Downtown Ottawa: Ottawa Bylaw issues 513 tickets, tows 121 vehicles over Canada Day weekend | CTV News – CTV News Ottawa

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Ottawa Bylaw officers issued 30 parking tickets and had eight vehicles towed out of the downtown core on Sunday, the final day the motor vehicle control zone remains in effect.

The control zone, aimed at preventing another convoy-style occupation near Parliament Hill, came into effect at 8 a.m. Wednesday in preparation for Canada Day celebrations and possible protests. While roads remain open for traffic, vehicles participating in protests are prohibited and there is no parking or stopping in the area.

In an update on Sunday afternoon, Ottawa Bylaw said since 8 a.m. Wednesday, officers have handed out 513 parking tickets – 186 tickets on Saturday and Sunday – and towed 121 vehicles.

Six tickets have been issued for encumbering the highway, one ticket for “pile material on highway” and three tickets for unlicensed mobile refreshment vehicles.

Bylaw Services says three tickets were issued for the unauthorized use of fireworks, while one ticket was issued for public urination.

“We thank all residents and visitors who celebrated Canada Day while respecting Ottawa residents and laws,” Bylaw Services said on Twitter Sunday afternoon.

Ottawa police have not commented on the police operation in downtown Ottawa over the Canada Day long weekend. Officers from the RCMP, OPP and municipal police forces across the country joined Ottawa police for the Canada Day policing plan.

Mayor Jim Watson told CTV News Ottawa he thought the Canada Day celebrations and the police presence went “really, really well.”

“We were better prepared, we had more police officers at the right time we needed them from different police services and at the end of the day I think what we did was make sure there was a police presence but we also were very firm with applying the rules,” Watson said.

The motor vehicle control zone stretches from Colonel By/Sussex Drive in the east to Booth Street in the west, and Wellington Street in the north to Laurier Avenue in the south. The control zone also includes the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway east of Parkdale Avenue.

It will remain in effect until 6 a.m. on Monday.

 

The city of Ottawa says a motor vehicle control zone will be in effect from Wednesday at 8 a.m. until July 4 at 6 a.m. (City of Ottawa/Twitter)

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