RCMP apologize: Questions remain more than 50 years after Yukon woman’s death
Family members are still searching for answers after the RCMP apologized for not properly investigating an Indigenous woman’s death more than five decades ago.
Tootsie Jimmy-Charlie, a 26-year-old Kaska member of the Liard First Nation and a mother of four, went missing in 1967.
Several weeks after loved ones expected her to return home from Whitehorse, RCMP informed them that her body had been discovered at a dump in the city.
On Friday, Yukon RCMP apologized to friends and relatives of Jimmy-Charlie at the Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre in Whitehorse for failing to properly investigate her death.
Jimmy-Charlie’s younger sister Anne Maje Raider, who attended the apology, said her family had mixed emotions, including relief and anger that it had taken so long.
Maje Raider said she is hopeful the RCMP’s commitment to change and improve its relationship with Indigenous people means something like this won’t happen again.
“That’s all that we can pray for now — that Indigenous women aren’t treated with racism and the RCMP respond immediately and do the search immediately,” said Maje Raider, who was 16 when her sister died.
Maje Raider said she remembers her sister, who was one of 14 children, as a loving mother.
“She was very compassionate and caring and she adored her children,” she said.
“She was always very slow putting on her makeup. One thing we always joke about was how she loves to put on makeup and take her time.”
Chief Supt. Scott Sheppard, commanding officer for the Yukon RCMP, said it was the police force’s job to complete a thorough investigation “and that was not done”
“Your experience was not up to the standards of our policies and procedures today, and we were not the police service you needed and deserved.”
In a statement ahead of the apology, Jimmy-Charlie’s family said the police investigation into her death was inadequate and the coroner’s report displayed prejudice against Indigenous people.
That report described the discovery of her remains as “uneventful” and determined her death was the result of “misadventure” with alcohol and exposure playing a prominent role. The family is asking that the “racism embedded in the report” be removed.
“To this day, the dump in Whitehorse remains far from everything. Their report makes it sound like she just walked there herself and died on a pile of garbage. No one does that. No one,” Jimmy-Charlie’s daughter, Darlene Jimmy, wrote in the statement.
The RCMP apology comes after several members of Jimmy-Charlie’s family publicly spoke about her death and how it was handled by police during the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women in 2017 and 2018.
The RCMP said it reviewed the case after a public complaint in 2019, and determined they had failed to conduct a thorough investigation, to keep the family informed or to advise them of the cause of Jimmy-Charlie’s death.
Police said their investigation remains open and they are asking the public for any information.
In addition to the RCMP apology, Maje Raider said her family wants an apology for the coroner’s report, and from the federal government for policies they believe led to Jimmy-Charlie’s death.
Under the Indian Act at the time, it was illegal for Indigenous people to purchase or consume alcohol and they weren’t allowed to hire legal representation.
Jimmy-Charlie’s family said she was taken to a jail in Whitehorse for either consuming or possessing alcohol.
They said her family expected her to return home by bus when she was released, but she never arrived.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Aug. 10, 2022
This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Meta and Canadian Press News Fellowship.
Emily Blake, The Canadian Press
Those With Rare Diseases Need to Wait, as Usual
Science has developed the ability to research, develop and create functional cures for many of our so-called “incurable diseases”, but having the ability to do something and actually doing it are two different things. Medicine has always suffered from a problem with “knowing-doing”. It is the difference between what a doctor actually does for a patient and what can be done with all that we know. Developmental breakthroughs in medicine are allowing doctors to do things they never could imagine before. Sometimes these break-thoughts don’t fit into businesses/governmental financial or regulatory systems, meaning that it can take a long time for patients to actually benefit, a time many patients may not have.
The National Institutes of Health in America invest more than $40 Billion in biomedical research each year, and the private sector twice as much. The discoveries are valued by all, but why is it so hard to use these discoveries?
Science’s ability to engineer medicines has far outpaced how these medicines are actually built, tested, and put into human beings. Artificial Intelligence has assisted the community by mapping the human genome in efforts to cure various diseases. The US Government defines rare diseases as those that affect fewer than 200,000 people in America. Some affect only a handful of people. There are over 7000 different rare diseases, with more than 30 million people in America diagnosed with one of them. That is 10% of the US population. So improving how society can find and care for these patients could have a great impact. Problem is that the health system is not flagging enough people with these diseases, while many individuals don’t even know what disease they may have, or that they indeed have a disease. A.I. steps up front to assist in the recognition, tracking, analyzing, and identifying of these patients through computer-programmed systems. Put one’s symptoms into the machine, and often voila, a point from which a doctor can begin his medical investigation and treatment. A diagnostic odyssey in each individual case.
Artificial Intelligence has a prominent place within our health system, including helping design new treatments, helping predict which treatment is better for which patient, and screening for rare diseases with suggested diagnoses to boot. Why are many with rare diseases often left out in the cold, to search on their own for a cure? Money! Simple.
Who makes medicines, and invests millions in treatments and research for diseases? Pharmaceutical Firms.
What are they but profit centers for investment bankers, massive corporations, and a financial structure centered upon the shareholder, and not the average joe? Solutions can be found, but the willingness to spend way beyond what a firm can make in profits needs to be there. Sure our DNA is constantly changing, and evolving biologically. Making a drug that cures cancer, may cure some, but certainly not all forms since each person is unique, their biology specific to that person. Many doctors realize that their methods are much like witch Doctors, forever experimenting with the specific individual’s condition.
Our Health system is tied to our financial system. That is the root of it. So long as the doctors, hospitals, and researchers are tied to profit (our financial system) the necessary technology, research, and investment will not be found for those with rare diseases. I have a disease that has no cure. My immune system is attacking the tissue in my mouth. It is sorely painful, personally transformative, and damn if you could find a doctor who is a real expert in the field. Since it is rare, the institutions of the industry will not find proper medicine for its management, let alone its cure. I live with it, and the disease manages the way I eat, what I eat, how I clean my teeth, how I sleep, and interact with my partner too. This disease can transfer to another. Great eh!
For those of you who have or know of someone who has a rare disease, all I can say is to be patient. The present-day financial and healthcare systems need to change drastically, with governmental intervention in all aspects of research, planning, and manufacturing of medicines. Out of the hands who care for themselves, and hopefully into the hands of those who care about you and those you love.
Canada is set for its largest alcohol tax increase yet. Here’s what to know
Canadians could soon be paying around a quarter more for a 24-pack of beer thanks to the largest increase yet to a federal tax on alcohol.
The “escalator tax” is set to increase by 6.4 per cent on April 1 unless a change is announced before then, such as when the federal budget is revealed on March 28, according to food distribution professor at Dalhousie University, Sylvain Charlebois.
Charlebois told Global News that the tax, which was introduced in 2017, was designed to automatically increase over time based on the rate of inflation to avoid renegotiating it too often.
Given the amount of inflation Canada has experienced recently, the tax is now set for its biggest increase ever, he noted. Last year, the tax went up 2.4 per cent.
And while a penny a beer might not sound like much of a hike, industry experts say it’s one more factor pushing up costs for producers and distributors that’s likely to have ripple effects on what consumers pay.
Breaking down the cost increase
Charlebois predicts the tax will increase the price of a single beer by one cent, while the finance ministry told Global News in a statement that the amount would be three-quarters of a cent. Charlebois said that the price increase would be visible immediately after the tax is scheduled to be implemented on April 1.
Beer Canada told Global News in a statement that the tax increase will bring up the price of a 12-pack by 10 cents. For a 750 ml bottle of wine, the price could increase close to three cents, according to figures from the Canadian Revenue Agency.
In a statement to the Canadian Press, the Liquor Control Board of Ontario (LCBO) said that a 750 ml bottle of a spirit of 40 per cent alcohol by volume (ABV) may increase 70 cents. Charlebois said that the tax may have a smaller impact on the price of craft beer since it is lower volume and usually at a higher price, but could affect larger manufacturers more.
The tax could have a ripple effect on costs, as well.
Beer Canada said since the tax is a production tax imposed on the brewer at the point and time of production, “it is then magnified by other fees and taxes imposed by distributors, retailers, and provinces, including sales taxes,” making the impact on a 12-pack likely closer to 20 cents.
Along with other inflation factors, beer retail prices are projected to rise 10 per cent in 2023, according to the organization.
Beer Canada notes there has been a 60-per cent increase in barley prices, 40-per cent increase in packaging costs, and a doubling of freight costs.
Industry group Restaurants Canada told Canadian Press it estimates the tax increase will cost Canada’s food-service industry about $750 million a year, with the average casual dining restaurant expected to pay an extra $30,000 towards alcohol.
The carbon tax is also set to increase April 1 to $65 a metric ton of carbon from $50, which Charlebois said could impact alcohol prices as well since most producers do not have completely green supply chains. In addition, provinces individually typically increase their tax on alcohol, as well.
Overall, the escalator tax alone will amount to an extra $125 million a year that Canadians will pay to the government.
“It’s just one tax people don’t need right now,” Charlebois said. “It doesn’t seem like much, but it’s more that the tax burden is only increasing.”
“It’s a lot of pressure,” he added.
Industry calls for no tax increase
There is still the possibility the tax could be scrapped, Sylvain said, as lobbyists are moving against it.
Beer Canada says that Canada has the highest alcohol taxes among G7 nations, with about half the cost of a typical can of beer going to taxes, while up to 80 per cent of a bottle of alcohol is taxed, according to Spirits Canada.
The organization is calling on the federal government to freeze current alcohol taxes until inflation reaches closer to the Bank of Canada’s two per cent target.
“It’s do or die time in terms of action,” CJ Hélie, president of Beer Canada, told Global News. “April 1 is right around the corner and the question will be, does the government’s actions live up to their commitment.”
On March 22, MPs voted 170 to 149 in favour of a motion calling on the government to cancel the alcohol tax increase, sponsored by Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre.
Helie told The Canadian Press that the escalator tax used to be “digestible” when it was around two per cent, but with more than triple the usual increase, it should now be reconsidered.
“When inflation is through the roof, we need to rethink this automatic formula,” Helie said. “The industry is already in dire straits. Using a rigid formula in a time like this is unacceptable.”
— with files from The Canadian Press
© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
Principal resigns after Florida students shown Michelangelo statue
A principal of a Florida school has been forced to resign after a parent complained that sixth-grade students were exposed to pornography.
The complaint arose from a Renaissance art lesson where students were shown Michelangelo’s statue of David.
The iconic statue is one of the most famous in Western history.
The 5.17m (17ft) statue depicts an entirely naked David, the Biblical figure who kills the giant Goliath.
The lesson, given to 11 and 12-year-olds, also included references to Michelangelo’s “Creation of Adam” painting and Botticelli’s “Birth of Venus”.
Principal Hope Carrasquilla of Tallahassee Classical School said she resigned after she was given an ultimatum by the school board to resign or be fired.
Local media reported that Ms Carrasquilla did not know the reason she was asked to resign, but believed it was related to the complaints over the lesson.
They also said Ms Carrasquilla had been principal for less than one year.
In an interview with US outlet Slate, the chair of the school’s board, Barney Bishop III, said that last year the principal sent a notice to parents warning them that students were going to see Michelangelo’s David – but that this wasn’t done this year. He called it an “egregious mistake” and said that “parents are entitled to know anytime their child is being taught a controversial topic and picture”.
“We’re not going to show the full statue of David to kindergartners. We’re not going to show him to second graders. Showing the entire statue of David is appropriate at some age. We’re going to figure out when that is,” Mr Bishop said.
On Thursday, Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, moved to expand a law that banned public schools from teaching sexual education and gender identity.
Teachers who violate the law face being suspended or losing their teaching licences.
The David was completed by Michelangelo between 1501 and 1504. It was instantly hailed as a masterpiece, with Renaissance artist Giorgio Vasari saying the David “surpassed” any statue that had ever existed before.
Queen Victoria gifted a copy of the David to the South Kensington museum – later the V&A – in 1857. When she first saw the cast, she was apparently so shocked by the nudity that a fig leaf was commissioned to cover up the genitalia.
The V&A’s website says that the leaf was kept “in readiness for any royal visits, when it was hung on the figure using two strategically placed hooks.”
20th century Japanese poster art – in pictures | Art and design – The Guardian
Putin and his allies love buying art. To help us win the war in Ukraine, we should confiscate it – The Guardian
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