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Unofficial Launch of Christmas with Salvation Army's Kettle Campaign – VOCM

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Yesterday marked the unofficial start of the Christmas season with the launch of the Salvation Army’s annual kettle fundraising campaign.

The effort takes on even greater significance this year with more people struggling due to the global pandemic.

Service NL Minister and area MHA Sarah Stoodley was on hand for the launch at the Avalon Mall on behalf of the provincial government.

She says many of her own constituents are struggling and in need of the kind of support that organizations such as the Salvation Army offers, adding government is extremely grateful for the role they play.

The Salvation Army aims to raise $700,000 through this year’s province-wide kettle campaign, and they hope the addition of debit terminals with the tap feature will help them get there.

Donations can also be made online.

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Sobeys brings back hero pay for grocery workers in lockdown areas – CBC.ca

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Grocery chain Sobeys has reinstated a program that will see its workers in areas locked down because of COVID-19 get a pay bump.

Empire Co., which owns Sobey’s, has brought back so-called “hero pay” for its hourly workers in Winnipeg, Toronto and Peel region, which is just west of Toronto. All three regions are currently on some sort of lockdown because of rising COVID-19 cases, and all but essential retail has been brought to a halt.

Sobeys workers who get paid by the hour in those regions will get between $10 and $100 extra per week, depending on how many hours they work per week. Although the figure may change as the situation improves or worsens, the company estimates that the initiative will cost it about $5 million.

The chain, like others, had a similar program for its workers in the early days of the pandemic as grocery stores were inundated by shoppers panic buying, the initial bonus program was halted in June as supply chains and stores got back to some semblance of normal.

“Our teammates continue to work tirelessly to keep our stores safe and our communities fed,” CEO Michael Medline said in a statement to CBC News.

“Launching the Lockdown Bonus, in the face of new government mandated lockdowns, was simply the right thing to do. I said that if we ever faced the same level of lockdowns in a region or province like we saw in the early spring, we would bring a recognition program back for our teammates.

“Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, our teammates’ efforts to keep stores open, shelves stocked and Canadian families fed have been nothing short of heroic.”

In its most recent earnings release, rival grocery chain Loblaws stated it has no plans to bring back a similar pay bump despite raising its dividend to shareholders by two cents per share because of strong sales growth.

“The company remains steadfast in its commitment to put customers and colleagues first, as we sustained investments and safety measures at store level, while resisting pressure to raise prices at a time when Canadians need value more than ever,” CEO Galen Weston said at the time.

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Costco, Hyatt House among those issued $5,000 fines for flouting public health orders – Global News

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A large retail and grocery store was fined this week for selling non-essential items in Winnipeg.

The Costco store on McGillivary Boulevard was given a $5,000 ticket, said the province of Manitoba Friday.

“The Manitoba government continues to take actions to protect Manitobans during the COVID-19 pandemic and advises that personnel empowered to enforce public health orders will be out in full force on Black Friday,” said the province in an early release sent out Friday morning.

Read more:
Manitoba RCMP hand out two dozen COVID-19 enforcement fines in one week

The province also said Manitoba Conservation officers fined four hunters from Ontario for not self-isolating when they came to Manitoba.

The hunters received tickets for $1,296.

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Three people in the capital region also got $1,296 tickets, two people for failing to keep their gatherings under five people, and one for not wearing a mask.

Other places that have received tickets in Manitoba recently:

  • Henry’s Camera on Kenaston – $5,000 for failing to close a non-essential business, Nov. 19
  • Robin’s Donuts on 10th street, Brandon – $5,000 for failing to keep patrons socially distanced, Nov. 10
  • Hyatt House, Sterling Lyon Parkway – $5,000 for allowing patrons to eat in their restaurant, Nov. 10

“Videos circulating widely on social media show individuals gathering in groups larger than permitted by current public health orders. The province is encouraging anyone with information to identify participants to call the COVID Tip Line,” said the province.

That number is 1-866-626-4862, or people can fill out a form online here.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Air Canada looks to grow cargo business, pilots ratify contract changes – BNN

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MONTREAL — Air Canada pilots have ratified changes to their contract that will help the carrier grow its cargo business, as airlines scramble to minimize the pandemic’s toll on their bottom lines.

The Montreal-based airline said Friday that it would convert several of its retired Boeing 767 aircraft to carry freight and that it had appointed a new executive, Jason Berry, to oversee its cargo division.

“Air Canada and Air Canada Cargo have pivoted quickly to new and unique commercial opportunities in response to evolving market conditions over the past 11 months,” Lucie Guillemette, Air Canada’s chief commercial officer, said in the statement.

The airline has looked to cargo as a potential opportunity in an otherwise bleak year.

In May, Air Canada announced it was adding flights to Bogota, Lima, Amsterdam, Dublin and Madrid to its cargo service, which includes up to 100 international all-cargo flights per week, according to the airline.

With passenger demand low, other major airlines, like American Airlines and United Airlines, have begun operating cargo-only flights this year, hoping to stem their losses. In the third quarter of 2020, United’s cargo revenue jumped nearly 50 per cent compared with the previous year.

The announcement Friday came as Canadian airlines await a decision from Ottawa on financial support for the industry. The government pledged in September to provide support for hard-hit businesses in the travel and tourism industries, but it has yet to announce a detailed plan.

Air Canada said the pilot contract changes will help it operate more competitively in the cargo business.

Michael McKay, chair of the Air Canada Pilots Association’s master elected council, said the organization’s members voted on the revised agreement earlier this month. The Boeing aircraft, which have been grounded and were exiting Air Canada’s fleet, will form a new fleet once they are converted to a freighter configuration, McKay said.

Berry, whose appointment as vice president for cargo begins Jan. 1, will join Air Canada from Alaska Airlines’ wholly owned subsidiary McGee Air Services, where he was president. He led Alaska Airlines’ cargo business from 2012 until June 2019.
   

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