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Via Rail says service could take days to resume if blockades lift – CTV News

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TORONTO —
Via Rail’s cancelled train services could take as long as 36 hours to resume when the Wet’suwet’en solidarity blockades are lifted, and delays could be forcing people to look at alternative forms of transportation.

“Via Rail is working with the infrastructure owner on the specifics of the resumption of service which is estimated to take at least 36 hours from the time the line is cleared,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Via Rail announced it was cancelling all train service from Toronto-Montreal and Toronto-Ottawa until Thursday, due to an ongoing blockade just east of Belleville, Ont.

Protesters have disrupted travel across much of the country for several days in a show of solidarity for the Wet’suwet’en Nation, whose hereditary chiefs oppose the construction of a 670-kilometre natural gas pipeline through northern British Columbia. Blockades around the country have now halted railway service for five days.

In Senegal, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he was receiving information on the situation, which he called an “issue of concern, obviously.” He added he’d be speaking with his other cabinet ministers about it as well.

“We recognize the important democratic right — and we will always defend it — of peaceful protests,” he said. “This is an important part of our democracy in Canada, but we are also a country of the rule of law and we need to make sure those laws are respected.

“That’s why I am encouraging all parties to dialogue to resolve this as quickly as possible,” Trudeau added.

Transport Minister Marc Garneau echoed Trudeau’s words, saying, “we are very concerned with the impact the blockages are having on the movement of goods across the country.” He added the government was “working across a number of departments to find a solution to this issue.”

On Tuesday, he had called the blockades “dangerous” and “illegal.”

Via Rail stated that, by Thursday, 223 trains will have been cancelled affecting at least 34, 200 passengers.

VIA RAIL URGES PEOPLE TO SEEK OTHER TRANSPORTATION

“We know that this unfortunate situation has an impact on our passengers travelling plans and we apologize for the inconvenience it is causing,” Via said. “We encourage them, if they need to travel in the affected areas over the next 2 days, to use alternative modes of transportation.

CTV News Toronto reported that the blockades could be forcing people in the Greater Toronto Area to rely on buses to get from Toronto to Montreal or Ottawa.

 

Porter Airlines told CTV News Toronto planes headed to affected cities are currently booked up this long weekend. But generally, they have enough capacity to take passengers there and back.

CTV News Toronto has reached out to Greyhound Lines, Inc. to see if and how the train disruptions have affected them and whether they’ve seen a recent increase in the number of passengers.

‘WAITING GAME’ BETWEEN PROTESTERS, OPP

Beginning last week, RCMP clashed with Wet’suwet’en land defenders after officers began to move into Wet’suwet’en territory to enforce a court-ordered injunction requiring protesters to stop blocking roads.

In Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, within Hastings County, Ont., CTV News’ parliamentary bureau reporter Annie Bergeron-Oliver told CTV News Channel on Wednesday, it was just a “waiting game” as to whether the Ontario Provincial Police would break up the blockade or not.

On Tuesday, the OPP called the situation “dire” and said they had to enforce the court order to end the blockade so that passenger and freight trains could resume normal service. Officers have asked protesters to peacefully disperse but they have not budged.

Bergeron-Oliver also clarified that the protesters were situated close enough to the train tracks that Via Rail felt it wasn’t safe enough to run trains through the area.

The company also added that, “since the blockade continues near New Hazelton, B.C., normal rail activities are interrupted between Prince Rupert-Prince George, in both directions until further notice.”

Via Rail also mentioned it was providing full refunds for passengers’ cancelled trips, which could take up to 10 days to complete due to the volume of requests.

Service from Toronto to Southwestern Ontario, between Montréal-Ottawa and Montréal-Québec is unaffected, Via Rail said.

But Via Rail isn’t the only company facing disruptions. On Tuesday, Canadian National Railway Co. announced it “will be forced to shut down significant parts” of its network until the blockades are removed.

Railway disruptions across the country could lead to holdups in the transportation of products such as foods, propane, Canadian grain, coal, potash, lumber and aluminum. And although rail transportation only accounted for 0.5 per cent of Canada’s GDP, disruptions such as blockades or worker strikes greatly affect the bottom line of companies that rely on it.

With files from CTVNews.ca writers Graham Slaughter and Alexandra Mae Jones

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COVID-19 in B.C.: Vancouver care home dealing with second outbreak – CTV News Vancouver

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VANCOUVER —
A second outbreak of COVID-19 has been declared at a West End seniors’ home.

Haro Park Seniors Centre said in an email to families Tuesday that a resident from the Amber Lane area tested positive for the disease at St. Paul’s Hospital.

The care home says there are currently no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the building.

“As a result of the outbreak being declared, we will be in full outbreak protocols as we were in the spring,” the email from the care home reads.

Haro Park says its team is fully stocked with personal protective equipment and disinfecting products and says it is “well prepared.”

All social visits from family are suspended until further notice.

A previous outbreak of the coronavirus at Haro Park was declared over in May. Eleven residents died and dozens more got sick after the first case at the facility was detected and announced on March 18.

At the time, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry described the outbreak as one of B.C.’s “first and most difficult care facility outbreaks.”

On Monday, Henry announced three new health-care facility outbreaks had been detected, including a second outbreak at Holy Family Hospital. Health officials said there were 13 active outbreaks in long-term care or assisted living facilities and three in acute care facilities.

Tuesday’s COVID-19 update will be delivered in a written statement sometime in the afternoon.

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Disney to lay off nearly 28K workers at California, Florida locations due to coronavirus

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U.S. President Donald Trump would not say during his first debate with former Vice President Joe Biden Tuesday if he will urge his supporters to stay calm in the event of a contested election in November.

Asked by moderator Chris Wallace, Trump said he is urging people to be poll watchers to stop fraudulent activity both in polling places and with mail-in ballots, which Trump has repeatedly said will be a “disaster.”

“I hope it’s going to be a fair election. If it’s a fair election, I am 100 per cent on board,” Trump said. “But if I see tens of thousands of ballots being manipulated, I can’t go along with that.”

“What does that mean?” Wallace asked. “Does that mean you’re going to urge your people to take to the streets?”

“It means you have a fraudulent election,” Trump replied.

“These people aren’t equipped to handle it, number one. Number two, they cheat,” he continued.



Biden, when asked the same question, promised to not declare victory until the election results are independently certified.

“Here’s the deal: we count the ballots,” he said. “Some of these ballots in some states can’t even be opened until Election Day. And if there’s thousands of ballots it’s going to take time to do it.”

Trump also said he’s counting on the Supreme Court to settle any dispute in the final electoral count. By that time, the court will likely include Trump’s third nominee, Amy Coney Barrett, creating an unbreakable conservative majority if the Republican-led Senate votes to confirm her before Nov. 3.

“I’m counting on them to look at the ballots, definitely,” he said. “I hope we don’t need them in terms of the election itself, but for the ballots I think so.”

Trump has already refused to confirm whether he’ll accept a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the election.

For months, the president, Attorney General Bill Barr and other fellow Republicans have argued that mail-in ballots — which is being expanded or introduced in nearly every state due to the novel coronavirus pandemic — will lead to widespread fraud, while providing little concrete evidence. They have voiced support for solicited absentee ballots, which Trump himself has used to vote.


Click to play video 'US Presidential debate: Biden presses Trump to release his tax returns after Trump claims he’s paid ‘millions’'While Trump tried to point to examples of election fraud during the debate, those were full of mischaracterizations. A story about a group of Trump’s so-called poll watchers being turned away from an office in Philadelphia, for example, was due to many reasons beyond hiding fraud, local media has pointed out.

Biden pointed out during the debate that members of the military have been voting by mail since the Civil War, and refuted Trump and Republicans’ arguments that mail-in voting will lead to widespread fraud.

“Why is it for them somehow not fraudulent,” Biden asked, speaking of military members. “It’s the same process. It’s honest.”

Biden closed by promising that not only would he accept the results if he loses, but so would Trump.

“Once the winner is declared and all the ballots are counted, all the votes are counted, that’ll be the end of it,” he said.

“If we get the votes, he’s going to go. He can’t stay in power. It won’t happen. So vote,” he said earlier, directly addressing the camera.

 

 

Source: – Global News

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These COVID-19 symptoms are more concerning for kids than the sniffles: B.C. doctor

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VANCOUVER —
When it comes to COVID-19 symptoms, there are some that parents of young kids should be more wary of, a B.C. doctor says.

Dr. Rhonda Low, a physician based in Vancouver, says sneezing and sore throats don’t necessarily mean parents need to sound the alarm or keep their kids at home. This comes more than a week after health officials suddenly changed screening requirements for students heading to class.

“Talk about making parents nuts because kids have runny noses and sore throats all year, as soon as school starts,” she said about the old requirements on CTV Morning Live Tuesday.

Low says according to current data, kids under the age of 10 aren’t likely to have COVID-19 if they just have a runny nose.

“The chance of them having COVID is only about seven per cent,” she said. “If a child has a sore throat, the chance of them having COVID is only about 13 per cent.”

The new checklist for schools says kids should stay home if they have fever, chills, a cough or shortness of breath, loss of taste or smell, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting. But if they have a runny nose, a sore throat, headache, fatigue or body aches, they are no longer required to be absent.

Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer, addressed the changes last week.

“There are so many things that cause children to have one symptom that has nothing to do with an infection,” she said.

“It’s a balancing act to make sure children are able to attend school as much as possible and minimizing the risk that they pose.”

Some of the symptoms that are still on the screening checklist are more concerning for young kids.

“The most important symptoms that seem to indicate that we should get your child tested for COVID are a fever and a cough,” Low said. “And those two are present in about two-thirds of cases.”

And Low says new research confirms what health experts have understood since earlier in the pandemic: kids under 10 are less likely to become infected, even with similar exposure to COVID-19 as adults.

“But the role of kids transmitting to others and adults is still not really clear,” Low said.

Source:- CTV News Vancouver

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