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BREAKING: Alberta to drop all COVID restrictions on Canada Day

Premier Jason Kenney announced Friday the province has reached the targets to launch Stage 3 which was a vaccination rate of 70.2% in the province.

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It’s all systems go for Alberta to launch into Stage 3 of its COVID-19 recovery plan.

Premier Jason Kenney announced Friday the province has reached the targets to launch Stage 3, which included a vaccination rate of 70.2% in the province.

He said Alberta will drop all COVID-19 regulations on July 1 and “our lives will get back to normal.”

That means:

  • All restrictions lifted, including ban on indoor social gatherings
  • Isolation requirements for confirmed cases of COVID-19 and some protective measures in continuing care settings remain

“This is a great day for Alberta! Thanks to the diligence of Albertans and the decision of 2.7 million folks to get vaccinated, we are now just two weeks away from getting our lives back to normal,” said Kenney at a Friday press conference.

“This is an important milestone and a great achievement, but we will not stop here. We will keep administering first and second doses as quickly as possible so we’re not just open for summer, but open for good.”

Kenney said the general indoor provincial mask mandate will be lifted, but masking may still be required in limited and specific settings.

And the mayors of Calgary and Edmonton have said they may continue with their municipal mask bylaws.

“With more than 70% of eligible Albertans now vaccinated with a first dose and more receiving second doses every day, the end of this pandemic is near,” said Health Minister Tyler Shandro.

“Thank you to the Albertans who have rolled up their sleeves to get protected. For those who are still thinking about getting a shot, you have only one week to get your shot before we draw for $1 million and other great prizes.”

Anyone in Alberta aged 18 and over can still enter the first Open for Summer Lottery draw for a chance to win $1 million. Registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on June 24 and proof of vaccination will be required to claim the prize. The winner will be announced on July 1.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard and the Vice-President: News Division of Western Standard New Media Corp. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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22 Comments

22 Comments

  1. Bill Mccann

    June 23, 2021 at 10:00 am

    Thank god. I can only imagine how much longer we’d be locked up for under that witch Notley. Never again.

  2. Jay Smith

    June 21, 2021 at 11:54 am

    Evil is fundamentally a destructive force, it cannot create anything: nothing in it is truly novel nor of use to humanity. Its pleasures are short-lived and spurious. It is unsustainable, self-defeating, ultimately leading to self-destruction.

    A dark winter is on the horizon.

    God Bless all.

  3. Tony

    June 20, 2021 at 9:24 pm

    Texas “re-opened” in early March and (despite the dire predictions of the learned classes) case rates and deaths have fallen dramatically, and no real correlation to vaccination rates either. Lockdowns were ineffective and disastrous; this should have been apparent to our craven and feckless leaders across the country a long time ago. Good video attached below. Also, see some of the work from aier.org. They have had excellent commentary on the corona madness from the beginning. https://odysee.com/@aier:2/g7-our-rulers-unleashed-kate-wand:a?r=J3hFwbzoSDQDbesHx3mn1uMMqaaa2ukZ

  4. Susan Grant

    June 20, 2021 at 5:01 pm

    Did he say ALL restirctions or did he say “nearly” all restrictions? Whats the difference between July 1 and June 21, or 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 24, 28, 29, 30? Why is the Stampede a go and NOT Kdays? Something is off and people need to geto ut of the city and get back to the roots #BoycottStampede and #BuycottSmallTownAlberta

  5. Steven Ruthven

    June 20, 2021 at 9:37 am

    Well good news for Albertans.

    However, Premier Kenney, my attitude towards you still stands. From UCP to WIPA for me. Vote Wildrose if you want real change in Alberta. Not the watered down version of change from the Staunch Federalist who promised much on the campaign trail then turned tail and ran, back to Mr. O’Toole.

  6. Andrew

    June 19, 2021 at 10:59 am

    Jason Kenney and his UCP are FINISHED. Alberta separation is not going away and there are millions of Albertans fighting for it!

  7. NB

    June 19, 2021 at 8:36 am

    And pastors are still in jails or prosecuted.

  8. berta baby

    June 19, 2021 at 7:27 am

    @ Chris … really interesting swine flu link I have shared it . That’s the kind of info we need to get out

  9. Mars Hill

    June 19, 2021 at 12:41 am

    I think someone told the greasy Kenney where the bear shit in the buck wheat and he turned again… lawsuits and tribunals will take take of his type, I think he know that and is cooperating now.

  10. Chris

    June 18, 2021 at 10:52 pm

    History repeats… 60 minutes report from the 70’s on Swine flu looked like Covid precursor.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4bOHYZhL0WQ

  11. Tony

    June 18, 2021 at 7:44 pm

    It seems like I can hardly drive around town or listen to the radio or search the internet without being inundated with aggressive and misleading advertising that is imploring everyone to get vaxxed. Now a lotto-bribe is being offered. The masks (figuratively speaking) have slipped off the faces of the societal institutions who have been exposed as being even more corrupt than I had previously thought. Don’t call it a conspiracy theory, it is actually Public Choice Theory. Our corrupt system of government provides distorted incentives for elected leaders and bureaucrats to act against the interests of all most of us who vote and pay taxes.

  12. Left Coast

    June 18, 2021 at 5:58 pm

    So Mr. Kenny . . . which Lockdown worked?

    Why NONE of them of course which is why you kept doing the same thing over & over.

    Hopefully by Fall you will have stepped down and been replaced by someone who is Not Allergic to SCIENCE and Facts.

    Next Flu Season . . . and there will be a next one, we have had one for more than 100 years now . . . how about we look after the vulnerable Seniors and let the rest of the population alone?

    The Last People I call when I have a problem is the friggin Govt . . . staffed by People who could NOT Perform in the Private Sector . . . just like most Politicians, always the Last to Know !

  13. berta baby

    June 18, 2021 at 4:12 pm

    Common let’s be reasonable here folks… if the vaccine is causing people to be sick… the vaccinated will be the ones getting sick. I know a pile of people who have been vaccinated.
    So either we are open for good or all the people who took the vaccine will be sick and documented ..: 30% of Canada is a 10.6million people… not going to be forced vaccinated

  14. Rose

    June 18, 2021 at 3:25 pm

    My guess is that we’ll be locked down again by October.

    Side effects from the vaccine will become overwhelmingly obvious & evident by then, but it will be officially labelled as Covid. Hence, the unvaccinated get blamed, and vaccines made mandatory.

    FYI… their so called vaccine (that isn’t even a vaccine), contains dangerous spike proteins that do circulate throughout the body, they do cross the blood brain barrier, they are contagious via shedding, and do destroy your bodies natural immune system.

  15. K

    June 18, 2021 at 3:05 pm

    Yes Kramer, I agree 100%. Something else is going on. This virus is not deadly, anyone who has researched the statistics for more than 5 minutes knows this. I don’t know what’s going on with these jabs but it’s weird to say the least.

    I have believed since April 2020 that when this rollout began, they were going to target the unvaccinated and blame us for the adverse effects of the virus, that is actually caused from the vaccines.

    No one sane wants to be under this totalitarian nightmare, but the vaccines are not the way out of it, and the elites know this. Sadly, the low information Covidian cult members do not. Things are going to get scary if we’re correct in our assumptions.

  16. @josh:unixhosting.cloud

    June 18, 2021 at 3:00 pm

    @JONATHAN DIXON

    It’s the same old give me another 2 weeks.

  17. berta baby

    June 18, 2021 at 2:22 pm

    Still hate him

  18. JONATHAN DIXON

    June 18, 2021 at 2:15 pm

    Waiting 12 days until July 1, 2021, is a torture technique. If they reached their alleged quota, there is no reason to wait that long, other than torture.

  19. Josh

    June 18, 2021 at 2:06 pm

    I guess I better start prepping for the fall. K is right. interesting wording ‘openforsummer’

    Cosmo is also justified. We have until August *based off last years statistics*

  20. Cosmo Kramer

    June 18, 2021 at 1:44 pm

    My fear is for when flu and cold season starts in the fall even a worse lockdown will be enforced and people who did not take the jab will be used as scapegoats. If there are adverse reactions or if jabbed people have a severe reaction if infected with a covid virus the government can begin a terrible pogrom of either force jabbing people or barring them from buying, selling, and trading.

    Keep in mind that these jabs are not vaccines in that they do not give one immunity nor do they prevent transmission. By their own documentation they are designed that if one does get infected they get a mild case. Jabbed and unjabbed can spread it all the same.

    Even so, if I am not jabbed and you are then you are safe from covid and I am at risk. It is my choice. If I have not had it (although we believe it went through our family in early 2020) then I am only a risk for others like me who accept the risk. Why are they so aggressively marketing and forcing this on people?

  21. Melanie Fletcher

    June 18, 2021 at 1:32 pm

    I do not believe them, this is a carrot, just watch. Within the next two weeks they will move the goal post and lock us down again. How about giving the keys back the churches and the Whistle Stop? Kenny and the gang need to go.

  22. K

    June 18, 2021 at 1:15 pm

    Sure, but for how long? ‘OpenForSummer’ doesn’t mean open in the fall. We’re in the midst of a full-blown psychological operation and these vaccines are not safe. Don’t count on this to last. These monsters are NOT to be trusted.

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CLEMENT: No reason to toast federal tax on non-alcoholic beer

Across the board, we should expect better from Ottawa, and the tax on non-alcoholic beer is yet another example of where they’ve gotten it wrong.

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Sin-taxes, across all sectors, are fairly excessive in Canada. At almost every turn the government sinks its tax teeth into the process of you purchasing the products you like. This is true for cannabis products, alcohol, tobacco, vaping, gas, and annoyingly so, non-alcoholic beer. Yes, non-alcoholic beer in Canada is not exempt from federal excise taxes.

You read that right. The federal government also extends its sin-tax regime for non-alcoholic beer, at a rate of $2.82/hectolitre.

The application of excise taxes for non-alcoholic beer is problematic for a variety of reasons. The first, and most glaring, is that it is hypocritical given that the federal government has exempted non-alcoholic wine and spirits from the excise tax. Why apply it for beer, but not wine and spirits? Obviously, a more consistent approach would be to simply exempt all non-alcoholic beverages from the excise tax, because the purpose of the sin tax is to recover alcohol-related healthcare costs. That said, there are no alcohol-related healthcare costs at all from non-alcoholic beer, which immediately shows the lunacy of sin-taxing these products.

In addition to correcting hypocrisy, removing the excise tax for non-alcoholic beer would put federal policy in line with how the provinces treat these products. Provincial regulators, including Alberta, don’t require non-alcoholic beverages to be sold at licensed alcohol retail outlets, because they’ve accepted the obvious that these products don’t have alcohol in them and thus shouldn’t be strictly regulated. That is why in Alberta these products are often sold alongside carbonated water and pop. Removing the excise tax would be the federal government following the lead of the provinces in treating non-alcoholic beer differently than beer, because they are in fact different.

On the industry side, the federal excise tax acts as a barrier for product development in Canada, mostly because other beer producing jurisdictions (US,EU,UK) don’t tax non-alcoholic beer. Because of this the domestic industry in those jurisdictions has flourished, offering consumers more choice and at better prices. Their sane tax policy, coupled with increased consumer demand, is in large part why the non-alcoholic beer market is expected to grow to over $4 billion by 2025. These drinks aren’t just for hipsters, designated drivers and pregnant women anymore.

Lastly, and most importantly, is how non-alcoholic beer is yet another example of new products reducing harm for consumers. And while I don’t personally enjoy these drinks, I can see why someone would still want to enjoy a beer with their friends, or at a bar, without the alcohol that comes along with it.

From a harm reduction perspective, it makes perfect sense to have different tax strategies for products that vary in risk. The Trudeau government, at times, has championed harm reduction for illegal drugs but appears to have a blind spot when it comes to legal substances. This is an uncomfortable trend from Ottawa that is perfectly exemplified by the excise tax on non-alcoholic beer. Ottawa has kept the excise tax system for non-smokable THC cannabis products, like edibles and beverages, despite the fact they are significantly less harmful. They’ve sought to ban vape flavours, despite the fact that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking, and flavours are an incredibly useful tool for adult smokers trying to quit.

Across the board, we should expect better from Ottawa, and the tax on non-alcoholic beer is yet another example of where they’ve gotten it wrong. Hopefully, come Budget 2022, they can correct this mistake and remove the excise tax from these products entirely.

David Clement is a columnist for the Western Standard and the North American Affairs Manager with the Consumer Choice Center

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EXCLUSIVE: 2003 hearing ruled Chu’s accuser ‘not to be believed’

“I find her evidence not to be believed and I was not able to consider her evidence when deciding a sentence.”

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The accuser at the centre of the embattled Calgary Coun. Sean Chu controversy told a hearing he sexually assaulted her while holding a gun to her head, according to documents obtained by the Western Standard.

But the presiding officer at the police disciplinary hearing, Insp. Debbie Middleton-Hope, said the then 16-year-old minor’s testimony was not credible and not to be believed.

The sentencing hearing took place Jan. 31, 2003 and lasted eight minutes.

Chu did admit to caressing the woman’s leg while in uniform at the King’s Head pub on Macleod Tr. after meeting her while conducting a walk-through patrol in August of 1997.

After his shift, Chu went home to change into civilian clothes before returning to the pub to meet the girl.

Middleton-Hope said in her statement that Chu provided investigators with intimate details of sexual contact the pair had when they returned to his home.

“I find Const. Chu to be forthright in his description of the details and I find his evidence to be believed,” said Middleton-Hope, a long-serving, well-respected Calgary policewoman, now retired.

The woman, in turn, denied Chu had caressed her leg.

“… her evidence was directed on an aggressive, physical struggle at which time a gun was held to her head,” said Middleton-Hope.

But Middleton-Hope said she found the woman’s testimony “inconsistent.”

“Under cross-examination (the woman) had difficulty in recalling pertinent details,” said Middleton-Hope.

“I find her evidence not to be believed and I was not able to consider her evidence when deciding a sentence.”

Middleton-Hope also addressed the age of the woman, who was 16 at the time.

“I have no evidence before me Const. Chu was aware of this fact. Several witnesses said [the girl] appeared to be 19 to 21 years old,” she ruled.

The accuser also testified she had an interaction with Chu two years previous after an altercation at school. Chu wasn’t the investigating officer, but did speak to the girl on the phone.

“…and [received] a Christmas card from her as a result of that phone call,” Middleton-Hope said.

“No evidence was presented that Constable Chu was aware of her age from this verbal contact.

“I believe Constable Chu to be sincere when he indicates he was unsuspecting of [the accusers] exact age.”

Middletin-Hope then ordered Chu have a letter of reprimand on his file for discreditable conduct for caressing the accuser’s leg while on duty.

Chu was also ordered to undergo six months of ethics training.

Middleton-Hope noted performance reviews in his 10-year police career described Chu as “hard working” and “highly motivated.”

For the third time, Chu was elected on October 18 to be the councillor for Ward 4. He won by 100 votes, winning the advance poll, but losing on election day. Documents over the case had been leaked to the media just days before the election in what Chu called a “political assassination.”

There have been a chorus of demands from other politicians for Chu to resign and a byelection called. Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, incoming Calgary mayor Jyoti Gondek and most of the incoming council have demanded Chu resign.

Chu said he would be happy to meet with Mayor-Elect Gondek to discuss the situation.

Dueling protests — one for Chu and one against — are planned in front of city hall on Sunday.

Chu has vowed to not resign and wants to clear his name.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean any harm,” Chu told the Western Standard in an exclusive interview on Tuesday.

Chu admits there was “some touching underneath clothes” in the 1997 incident.

“She then said she wanted to go home and I drove her straight there.”

Chu denied media reports that a gun was produced during the evening at his home. He said he checked his service weapon in at the police’s traffic office when he signed off duty.

“If there had been a gun involved there would have been charges,” said Chu.

Documents obtained by the Western Standard and other media indicate that the woman claimed the whole process was a “cover-up.”

Chu served as a Calgary police officer from 1992 until he was elected in 2013.

Now Chu said he is looking at his legal options and a possible defamation suit over some of what he called the false reporting.

“I have always told the truth. My reputation is important to me and now my family is hurting,” said Chu.

Chu said he wouldn’t comment on remarks made by Gondek that she will try and remove him from council.

“I will continue to tell the truth at council and will be a fiscal hawk,” he said.

“The most important thing is I told the truth and the truth will prevail.”

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

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TV news mistakes leads to censure

“The details were clearly inaccurate and related to historical facts,” wrote the Canada Broadcast Standards Council.

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A St. John’s TV station breached newsroom ethics when it put out a report containing mistakes, says Blacklock’s Reporter.

The TV station was censured for garbling a handful of facts in a local story.

“The details were clearly inaccurate and related to historical facts,” wrote the Canada Broadcast Standards Council.

Correct information “could have been easily verified by the reporter prior to airing the news segment,” wrote the Council.

NTV on its flagship suppertime newscast last April 26 broadcast a story on a local parole case that misstated the year of the crime, the date the killer was convicted, and the number of years the murderer served in the penitentiary.

“This whole story was riddled with inconsistencies,” complained one viewer.

“He was charged and convicted in 2003. They reported 2002.

“These facts were not factual. There were four mistakes in the story.”

NTV management apologized and acknowledged errors were made as the story was “rushed to air” but denied any breach of newsroom ethics.

“Although we do not believe our coverage of this story was in breach of any industry guidelines or codes, we understand every individual may view news material or programming from a different perspective,” wrote station managers.

The Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ Code Of Ethics states, “It shall be the responsibility of broadcasters to ensure that news shall be represented with accuracy.”

A similar Code Of Journalistic Ethics by the Radio Television Digital News Association states: “We are committed to journalism in the public interest that is accurate and reliable.”

“There was no deliberate attempt by NTV to change the narrative of this story which focused on the revocation of the parole of the convicted murderer,” wrote the Standards Council.

“It is understandable that in a rush to get the story to air, incorrect pieces of information were used.”

“Journalists should strive to verify facts and put them in context. These inaccuracies constitute breaches.”

There are no fines for breaching TV codes. The station must announce the violation on its newscast.

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