According to a new poll, more than half of Canadians think 2019 was a generally bad year for Canada.
Among the results, 75 per cent of Canadians expect an increase in global temperatures in 2020 while over six in 10 Canadians said they believe gender wage equality won’t be reached this year.
Jennifer McLeod, Ipsos vice president of public affairs, said a majority of Canadians are actually still feeling positive for this year — despite their view of 2019 as well as the negative predictions they’ve made for 2020.
“You know, while some things that Canadians are worried about have met these negative predictions … I do think that on the whole, they are feeling positive,” said McLeod.
The poll also found that about three-quarters of Canadians feel that 2020 will be better overall year than 2019, as well as about four in 10 feel that the global economy will be better.
“Though Canada isn’t quite as optimistic about this as some other countries, you know that’s still not a bad number — we’re looking for that silver lining,” she said.
Canada’s outlook on the last year was still not as negative compared to other countries around the world, the poll found.
Almost two-thirds of those polled globally thought of 2019 as a bad year for their country compared to 54 per cent of Canadians.
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When it comes to their personal experience, only 42 per cent of Canadians thought last year was bad for them and their family compared to 50 per cent of those polled everywhere on average.
McLeod said that although she wasn’t surprised by the results, what stood out the most to her were the predictions on both climate change and loneliness.
“It’s turned into the issue of our generation,” McLeod said of climate change.
“We see that this is continuously an important issue for Canadians today and it has been a growing issue over the last (few) months. Environmental responsibility is important to most Canadians.”
One question on the Ipsos poll asked whether or not a person would feel lonely most of the time in 2020, a question Canadians measured 29 per cent in compared to the global average of 33 per cent.
McLeod attributes it to the prevalence of mental health issues.
On a lighter note, Ipsos also asked how likely it would be for aliens to visit Earth in 2020 — a scenario only 1 in 10 Canadians thought was likely.
“Some might see that as a good thing, some might see that as a bad thing but it’s just a minority of Canadians that feel that way,” said McLeod.
This Ipsos poll was an online survey of 22,512 interviews conducted between Nov. 22-Dec.6, 2019. The results were weighted to balance the demographics of the adult population among the countries surveyed. The precision of the Ipsos online poll with an unweighted probability sample and 100 per cent response rate would have an estimated margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points for a sample of 1,000, and an estimated margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points 19 times out 20 per country of what the results had been if the entire country’s adult population had been polled.
© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
Why that cheap flight price in Canada might actually be in U.S. dollars – CBC.ca
Jane Wasson is still trying to figure out how an Air Canada flight booked last year in Canada, to fly across Canada, was billed in U.S. dollars and included some U.S. taxes.
But Air Canada said the answer is simple — she was using the U.S. site, where the charges are clearly shown in American dollars and there’s a small U.S. flag at the top of the home page.
The airline stressed she paid the same fare as she would have on the Canadian site, once the currency conversion was taken into account.
But Wasson thought she was paying in Canadian dollars and got a shock when the exchange rate kicked in.
“When you booked online there, was no indication that you were paying in American dollars,” she said.
“There was none at all.”
In August, Wasson sat down at her home computer in Minto, N.B., and booked a September round-trip flight on Air Canada’s website, www.aircanada.com, for her husband to fly from Fredericton to Kelowna, B.C., with stopovers in Toronto on both legs.
The cost was $801.14. It wasn’t until she received her credit card statement in September that she saw Air Canada charged her $1,063.55 for the ticket — an additional $262.41.
She contacted the Air Canada call centre, but said the customer service rep was as mystified by the charge as she was. Wasson was advised to file a complaint, which she did.
She also called her credit card company to dispute the charge. It was removed. However, Air Canada maintained she owed the full amount, so the $262.41 charge was placed back on her account.
Wasson received an acknowledgement of her complaint from Air Canada, followed by a generic response in November that didn’t address the issue, but offered her a 15 per cent discount on another flight within the next year.
She said she has subsequently booked other Air Canada flights and was charged in Canadian dollars.
“As soon as I learned through my credit card [that I was charged in American dollars], I went back … but I haven’t been able to duplicate the American charge,” she said.
She also doesn’t understand why there was a U.S. flight segment tax and a U.S. transportation tax applied to the ticket for flights that were only in Canada.
Similar situations have happened before
This isn’t the first time an Air Canada passenger has been charged in U.S. dollars.
In December 2018, B.C. resident Doreen Hucal said she was billed in U.S. dollars when she booked her flights on the Air Canada app. At the time, Air Canada said Hucal was using its American website, even though Hucal insisted she was using the app.
In July 2017, the Competition Bureau issued a news release urging people to double-check the type of currency being used by companies online. It referenced purchases including furniture, clothes, jewelry and travel packages.
It said some websites don’t clearly identify which currency they are using, and that the dollar symbol could represent either Canadian or American dollars.
“Ensuring that you are shopping on the company’s Canadian website (with an address ending in “.ca”), or selecting Canada as your country of origin can help, but it does not guarantee that the price shown is in CAD,” said the news release.
CBC News contacted the Competition Bureau to ask whether it has received complaints about airlines charging Canadians in U.S. dollars, how many complaints it’s received and which airlines were involved.
But the Competition Bureau said it wouldn’t answer those questions because it’s required by law to conduct its work confidentially.
Air Canada says U.S. site clearly marked
In an email to CBC News, an Air Canada spokesperson said as an international carrier, the airline sells tickets to people around the world and flights can be purchased in several currencies.
“Aircanada.com has pop-ups asking customers to confirm their country the first time they visit it or if users have not visited the site in a while,” Pascale Dery wrote, adding customers should always check to ensure they are on their preferred site.
Dery said the country is clear because of the flag at the top of the page, and changing countries and currency can be done by simply clicking on a tab.
“Customers are advised several times during the booking process of the currency they are purchasing in, including prior to completing their purchase,” Dery added.
CBC Halifax used the U.S. site to start booking a trip and it did clearly show the charges in U.S. dollars.
CBC then cleared the cache of the computer and attempted to book again on the following day, which yielded a pop-up message that said, “You are about to open the aircanada.com edition for UNITED STATES, but it looks like you’re located in or your previous selection was CANADA.“
Dery said that message isn’t a new feature, but Wasson insisted there was no pop-up on her reservation.
Meanwhile, Dery said all tickets are fully refundable within 24 hours of purchase, so customers should check the itinerary receipts sent to them at the time of booking to ensure everything is OK.
Air Canada said it’s willing to refund the $16.80 US flight segment tax to Wasson and has provided a link for her to submit her claim.
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Prince Harry and Meghan's arrival could mean 'new grounds' for Canada's privacy laws – CBC.ca
British paparazzi may soon come face-to-face with Canada’s privacy laws as the arrival of Prince Harry and Meghan has already prompted a warning to the U.K press to back off or face legal action.
But it’s unclear what legal recourse the royal couple will have to keep news photographers away from their family.
David Fraser, a Halifax-based privacy lawyer, says, when it comes to privacy claims in Canada, he hasn’t found any related to celebrities and paparazzi.
The lawsuits here that relate to invasions of privacy, most recently, deal with large-scale business data breaches, or hidden cameras, he said.
“So this is relatively new grounds that we’re looking at, maybe because we don’t have the same sort of paparazzi culture or the same sort of celebrity culture in Canada. But so far, a claim like this has not been made or at least hasn’t gone to a published decision,” he said.
“It’s not something that’s really been tested a whole lot in Canada. We don’t have a paparazzi culture.”
Buckingham Palace announced Saturday that the prince and his wife will give up public funding and try to become financially independent. The couple is expected to spend most of their time in Canada while maintaining a home in England near Windsor Castle in an attempt to build a more peaceful life.
Video from Sky News showed Harry landing at Victoria’s airport late Monday. The prince, Meghan and their eight-month-old son Archie were reportedly staying at at mansion on the island.
Lawyers for the couple sent a letter to British new outlets, accusing photographers of “harassment,” and claiming that paparazzi have permanently camped outside their Vancouver Island residence, attempting to photograph them at home using long-range lenses.
They also allege that pictures of Meghan — on a hike with Archie and her two dogs, trailed by her security detail, on Vancouver Island on Monday — were taken by photographers hiding in the bushes.
“There are serious safety concerns about how the paparazzi are driving and the risk to life they pose,” the letter read.
When it comes to privacy issues in Canada, there are a few ways Canadians can take action, says Iain MacKinnon, a Toronto-based lawyer.
One can argue “intentional infliction of mental stress” in which the conduct of the defendant has to be proven to be flagrant and outrageous; calculated to produce harm, and results in visible and provable illness, he said.
There’s also what’s known as “intrusion upon seclusion” in which the defendant’s conduct must be intentional or reckless and have invaded the plaintiff’s private affairs “without lawful reason.” Also, a “reasonable person would regard the invasion as highly offensive causing distress, humiliation or anguish,” MacKinnon said.
And there’s public disclosure of private facts, when one publicizes an aspect of another’s private life — without consent — that would be highly offensive to a reasonable person. The publication also would not be of legitimate concern to the public.
“And Meghan Markle walking her dog in a public space … would not fall under any of those,” MacKinnon said.
They may seek recourse under the B.C. Privacy Act which specifically says it’s a violation for somebody to willfully and without a legal basis violate the privacy of someone else, and allows for someone to sue the alleged perpetrator.
In making that determination, a judge is required to take into account the circumstances of the situation, the relationships between the parties and other people’s rights and interests. There is an exemption, however, for journalistic publications and if the matter is of public interest.
“Up until now, certainly when they’ve been part of the Royal Family and are highly public figures and are paid, their whole and entire lifestyle is paid for by public funds, then that’s certainly one justification for arguing that what they do is a matter of public interest,” MacKinnon said.
“As they may recede from public life and become more private citizens, that argument may be more difficult to make. But certainly today, this is headline news, them leaving England, leaving the Royal Family, moving to Canada. It’s tough to say that this is not a matter of public interest.”
Most people won’t consider it to be highly offensive that someone took a picture of Meghan in public park because there isn’t a reasonable expectation of privacy, MacKinnon said.
“Now, if they’re shooting with telephoto lenses into a house where Harry and Megan are staying and they’re photographing them in their private lives inside a house, that might be a different story.”
Fraser says, under the act, an invasion of privacy can also include surveillance.
“It’s really going to depend upon the exact circumstances of what’s alleged. But it certainly sounds like a group of photographers, paparazzi following them around might fit into the category of surveillance,” he said.
Fraser said even if one is in a public place, there’s still an expectation of privacy.
Being in a public park, there’s a significantly reduced expectation of privacy. But when it comes to a photographer hiding in a bush, a court might say it’s arguable that one has an expectation of privacy if they are in a place, looking around, not seeing other observers and somebody has hidden themselves, Fraser said.
“There would also probably be an element of kind of additional intrusion based on the fact that the person has hidden themselves and is covertly trying to surveil somebody,” Fraser said.
The Charter of Rights and Freedoms doesn’t give anybody a particular privacy interest among individuals — only against the state. It does, however, provide a right for freedom of expression, which would be the right that the photographers have, Fraser said.
“So any court considering these issues would have to balance those interests which includes the rights of journalists to collect information, to disseminate that information, against a particular privacy interest.”
Still, Fraser believes Harry and Meghan could find a “level of sympathy” in the courts
“Given that, it seems that they’re moving from the United Kingdom to Canada, least part time, in order to get away from this glare and get away from these invasions of privacy,” he said.
It’s unlikely that the royals would see a big cash windfall in the event their legal claims were successful. Privacy damages are relatively low or modest in Canada, Fraser said.
“But I would expect that an injunction so a court order requiring the paparazzi to stay away might be something that they would seek as well.”
And as MacKinnon noted, Harry and Meghan, through their lawyers, are probably attempting to set new ground rules.
“My guess is that they’re trying to draw a new line in the sand here with both the Canadian media [and], more likely, the Fleet Street tabloids.”
Iran at odds with Canada’s demands after asking U.S., France to help analyze black boxes – Global News
Iran said it had asked the U.S. and French authorities for equipment to download information from black boxes on a downed Ukrainian airliner, potentially angering countries which want the recorders analyzed abroad.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Iran did not have the ability to read the data and he demanded the cockpit and flight recorders should be sent to France. Kiev wants the recorders sent to Ukraine. Canadian citizens totalled 57 of the 176 people killed in the crash,
The U.S.-built Boeing 737 flown by Ukraine International Airlines was shot down in error by Iranian forces on Jan. 8 during a period of tit-for-tat military strikes that included the killing by the United States of a senior Iranian general on Jan. 3.
Tehran, already embroiled in a long-running standoff with the United States over its nuclear program, has given mixed signals about whether it would hand over the recorders.
An Iranian aviation official had said on Saturday the black boxes would be sent to Ukraine, only to backtrack in comments reported a day later, saying they would be analyzed at home.
A further delay in sending them abroad is likely to increase international pressure on Iran, whose military has said it shot the plane down by mistake while on high alert in the tense hours after Iran fired missiles at U.S. targets in Iraq.
“If the appropriate supplies and equipment are provided, the information can be taken out and reconstructed in a short period of time,” Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization said in its second preliminary report on the disaster released late on Monday.
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A list of equipment Iran needs has been sent to French accident agency BEA and the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board, the Iranian aviation body said.
“Until now, these countries have not given a positive response to sending the equipment to (Iran),” it said. It said two surface-to-air TOR-M1 missiles had been launched minutes after the Ukrainian plane took off from Tehran.
Iran’s aviation body says it does not have equipment needed to download information from the model of recorders on the three-year-old Boeing 737.
General Electric Co has received a license from the U.S. Treasury Department to help in the investigation of the crash, a GE spokesman told Reuters on Tuesday.
Under U.S. sanctions law, the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) must grant approval for U.S. investigators to participate in the probe and potentially travel to Iran.
GE co-owns with France’s Safran SA the French-U.S. firm CFM that made the plane’s engines.
Trudeau said the data should be downloaded immediately.
“There need to be qualified experts doing that but it’s also a question of technology and equipment and that is not available in Iran,” he told a news conference in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
“There has been broad consensus in the international community that France would be the right place to send those boxes (and) we continue to pressure Iran to do just that.”
Question of black boxes hangs over Ukrainian International Airlines Flight 752 investigation
Trudeau also said Tehran’s refusal to acknowledge dual citizenship was posing a challenge when it came to helping support the families of the Canadian victims, many of whom had close ties to Iran.
Iran, which took several days to acknowledge its role in bringing down the plane and faced street protests at home as a result, fired its missiles at U.S. targets in response to a U.S. drone strike that killed General Qassem Soleimani in Iraq on Jan. 3.
Iran has for years faced U.S. sanctions that limited its ability to purchase modern planes and buy products with U.S. technology. Many passenger planes used in Iran are decades old.
Under Tehran’s 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers, Iran received sanctions relief in return for curbing its nuclear work. But Washington reimposed U.S. sanctions after withdrawing from the pact in 2018, a move that led to the steady escalation of tension in recent months between the United States and Iran.
European governments say they want to save the deal but have also suggested it may be time for a broader pact, in line with Trump’s call for a deal that would go beyond Iran’s nuclear work and include its missile program and activities in the region.
Iran says it will not negotiate with sanctions in place.
Since the plane disaster, Iran’s judiciary chief Ebrahim Raisi has said compensation should be paid to families of the victims, many of whom were Iranians or dual nationals.
Canada, Ukraine, Britain, Afghanistan and Sweden, which all lost citizens, have demanded Iran make the payouts
© 2020 Reuters
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