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UPDATED: Kenney says sorry; imposes vaccine passport, return to lockdowns

Under the new restrictions, which are expected to go into effect Friday, restaurants in Alberta that don’t require vaccination proof would be limited to offering patio or curbside service.

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Alberta Premier Jason Kenney is set to bring in more province-wide lockdowns including the forced closures of dine-in restaurants.

And he apologized for his comments earlier this summer when he said Alberta “was open for good.”

“It’s now clear we were wrong and for that, I apologize.” He later said he wasn’t apologizing for relaxing COVID-19 restrictions on Canada Day.

As of September 20, restaurants will have to shut their dining rooms and only be allowed to serve take-out meals or on their patios. The province will also continue a curfew of 10 p.m. for liquor sales to be cut off.

The government is bringing back forced social distancing and making it illegal for unvaccinated people to attend social functions in homes.

Vaccinated families can have friends come over from one other vaccinated house to a total of 10 people.

In schools, forced masking is in for students in Grades 4 and up, plus staff and teachers in all grades.

Mandatory work from home orders are back in place.

Churches can stay open as long as physical distancing is maintained and people wear masks. Capacity is limited to one-third of fire code.

Indoor wedding ceremonies and funeral services are permitted with up to 50 people, or 50% of fire code occupancy, whichever is less, but they are prohibited unless the hosting facility implements the restrictions exemption program.

It comes as the province reports 1,609 new COVID-19 cases and a whopping 24 more deaths – the highest number of pandemic-related deaths since January 21.

Kenney and his cabinet members dealing with COVID-19 were engaged in marathon meetings Tuesday and Wednesday.

Kenney said the province has been placed back into a state of emergency.

Alberta is under assault by a fourth wave of COVID-19, spearheaded by the Delta variant. There have been thousands of new cases and hospital ICU numbers are at record levels.

Kenney said the province could run out of ICU beds in the next 10 days if projections are correct. Thousands of elective surgeries have already been cancelled. Alberta Health Services officials are set to reach out to other provinces to see if they have open ICU beds or any extra staff that could be deployed here.

He said the government will “spare no costs” to maximize hospital capacity and again said it was a “pandemic of the unvaccinated,” and urged everyone to get vaccinated.

“This is truly a life or death matter,” Kenney said.

Kenney said the government will bring in a “proof of vaccination” program for business.

If businesses such as restaurants start using a vaccine passport, they will get exemptions.

The vaxport program starts September 20.

Kenney said he still has confidence in Hinshaw as his CMOH.

Currently 71.4% of Albertans 12 and over are fully vaccinated.

“Today’s update is heartbreaking. We lost another 24 Albertans to COVID-19. 24. Today is a reminder that this pandemic is not over. There are 877 Albertans in hospital, 218 in ICU. The fourth wave is having devastating consequences across Alberta,” said NDP leader Rachel Notley.

Two independent MLAs, booted in May from the UCP caucus blasted the government.

“The rise in the number of Covid-19 patients this fall was entirely predictable, and the government’s failure to adequately prepare is negligent. Let me be clear; this is not a failure of our front-line doctors and nurses. This is a failure of management. This is a failure of government,” said Independent MLA Drew Barnes.

The pair said vaccine passports are “a coercive measure designed to segregate from society the 20% of eligible Albertans who have exercised their legal right not to be vaccinated.”

“People have already contacted me telling me they have lost their jobs due to not being vaccinated. Many healthcare professionals feel betrayed that they were good enough to work during 18-months of the pandemic unvaccinated, but are now facing termination. Vilifying and banishing hundreds of thousands of Albertans from daily life will immediately damage our economy and disrupt supply chains. If this action continues it would clearly violate Albertans’ rights,” said Independent MLA Todd Loewen.

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi unloaded both barrels at the Kenney government.

“I have (worked with) six premiers, two prime ministers, I’ve worked with dozens of big city mayors — some of whom were embroiled in scandal and lots of trouble — and I have never seen a government this incompetent,” said Nenshi Wednesday afternoon, according to Postmedia.

The full list of Alberta restrictions can be found here.

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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24 Comments

24 Comments

  1. Barbara

    September 26, 2021 at 2:39 pm

    How many of you wear masks when you go out? If the thousands that have demonstrated took off their masks this would be over,

  2. Kieran

    September 17, 2021 at 12:15 pm

    So Nenshi is running for NDP leadership next time?

  3. MD

    September 16, 2021 at 9:38 am

    Wildrose Independence Party of Alberta in 2023!
    We will never hear the truth about what is really happening in the hospitals with these liars. Whistleblower healthcare workers are telling us the truth. It’s the vaxxed that are in the hospitals. Antibody dependent enhancement, breakthrough infections and vax injuries are a real thing. Israel has exposed this. It’s a tragic consequence of pushing a heavy handed vaccine program with vaccines that are a failure. Natural immunity is far more superior and if the government had allowed the infection to take its course naturally like doctors in Alberta said to do we wouldn’t be in this situation. UCP is incompetent!!! Science and truth have become the casualties once again. If they are so concerned about overwhelming the system and saving lives then why are the doctors still prohibited from using Hydroxychloroquine and Ivermectin?!! This is not about our health and safety. Alberta is under destruction by traitors!

  4. Chris

    September 16, 2021 at 3:36 am

    Since September 1st vaccinated patient’s climbed from 18% of hospitalizations to 26% in Alberta as per AHS’s own numbers.

    This number coincides with people vaccinated in the spring who are loosing immunity, this number is sure to rise in the coming months.

    Soon the boosters will be following which will cause more damage to the vaccinated. My doctor said today we through rocks at the prime minster, in 18 months it’ll be lead.

    Coworker went for her shot last week to keep her job. Today she complains of pain and nerve damage after getting the shot, she is scared for the second shot. 30% of our work force at my employer will walk out when the mandate comes in.

    Many of us lined up work already. We will not support now or ever again any business that brings in the passport for customers.

    I live in a small community but are readying the house to sell to move to a rural acreage.

    Cities will boil with anger over these vaccine shots and the damage from the spike proteins.

    This is our generation’s war. It will take a few years for the crazies to see the damage they are causing and deal with the anger of the people.

  5. Tony

    September 15, 2021 at 11:52 pm

    Thank you Kelly Carter. Twenty months and four “waves” and our sclerotic public health care system is always-and-everywhere at the precipice of ruin. At what point are feckless bureuacrats and pernicious public sector unions accountable for any of this?

  6. Josh

    September 15, 2021 at 9:44 pm

    When your provincial medical officer says our ICUs are filling up but are so blind they wont use early symptomatic treatment methods only *get injected* it’s safe and easy.. they wont even say effective lol

    Dr. Trozzi from Toronto earlier this year said *I wouldnt even take this injection at gun point*

  7. JONATHAN DIXON

    September 15, 2021 at 9:17 pm

    “The vaxport program starts September 20.”

    I wonder if this is just a coincidence. Will people who do not have the vaccine passport, or “vaxport,” have difficulty voting in the federal election? If so, it will affect the People’s Party of Canada (PPC) the most, because the people who are PPC supporters are the most likely not to have had the COVID-19 jabs.

  8. Seven-Zero-One

    September 15, 2021 at 9:06 pm

    UCP is new 🟧NDP

  9. James Taylor

    September 15, 2021 at 8:41 pm

    “It is terrible to contemplate how few politicians are hanged.”
    G.K. Chesterton (1921)

    I’d like to add a personal addendum to this:

    “It is terrible to contemplate how few politicians and bureaucrats are hanged.”

  10. Wesley

    September 15, 2021 at 8:40 pm

    Time for Kenney to resign is long overdue. Promises made ,promises broken!

  11. Royden Yuill

    September 15, 2021 at 8:00 pm

    It’s time for Kenney to leave. We are done. When the Nuremberg 2.0 trials start I suggest pay per view public hangings and $1000.00 in person attendance. It’ll start to pay for some of the crap these criminals are causing. I’m not sure who I loathe more, Trudeau or Kenney. I hope I’m still alive to attend both.

  12. Andrew

    September 15, 2021 at 8:00 pm

    Wildrose Independence Party people!!!!!!!

  13. Kelly Carter

    September 15, 2021 at 7:51 pm

    This was so predictable. Both the rise in cases, and Kenney’ irrational, illogical response, and o yeah those Vaxx passes that were never supposed to happen. Yet another broken promise. This was manageable with planning and staffing changes to the hospitals as well as firing the bureaucrats in the AHS and proper planning and procurement. But hey, blame it on “unvaccinated”, and continue on with all the dumb ass failed policies that have never worked.

  14. Barbara

    September 15, 2021 at 6:59 pm

    Was this debated and voted for in the Ledge? NO! Is Deena Henshaw the new leader of the Conservative. NO! We are living in a Communist Country.
    When did Democracy end in Alberta?? Lies, lies and more lies.

    It’s time our MLAs got a backbone and JUST SAY NO!!!! Otherwise they will all be out of a job.

  15. Baron Not Baron

    September 15, 2021 at 6:44 pm

    As soon as the enslavement is rolling, by a miracle, all the plandemic is gone, but.. you gotta continue to be a faceless moron, with your body raped and gps monitored by the gvt’s nanofuckers !
    Reminder:
    COmpulsory
    Vaccine
    ID
    1(A)
    9(I)

  16. Josh

    September 15, 2021 at 6:43 pm

    Alberta is under assault by stupidity.

  17. Dean Fraser

    September 15, 2021 at 6:32 pm

    Totalitarian dictatorship.

  18. Cosmo Kramer

    September 15, 2021 at 4:54 pm

    Is anyone really surprised the way this has been going? All predicted in Rockefeller and WEF documents. This will only go on as long as we let it.

    I wonder if Notley is heartbroken over the record number of suicides over the last 18 months. Somehow I doubt it in that it does not fit with her agenda.

    Expect this to get worse. First restaurants then what next? Shopping malls? Grocery stores? Churches (of course will not be enforced at any other places of worship)? Youth sports?

    The slippery slope is that a person will not be able to buy sell or trade without the mark without succumbing to the very controversial and dubious gene therapy injections.

  19. berta baby

    September 15, 2021 at 4:48 pm

    Least it’s only against the unvaxxed and not just the natives, blacks and Jews. Wouldn’t want to be accused of discrimination.

  20. K

    September 15, 2021 at 4:19 pm

    Way to force their hand, you absolutely disgusting, evil tyrant.

  21. Declan Carroll

    September 15, 2021 at 4:10 pm

    Kenney broke his promise not to bring in vaccine passports. This guy is the scum of the earth and I really would encourage UCP MLA’s to do the right thing and start resigning. Is this what you want for your children? Do you want your children growing up in a segregated society with a subjugated population? Absolute disgrace and this is not going to be happening without stiff resistance that I can assure you.

  22. K

    September 15, 2021 at 3:56 pm

    Unfuckingbelievable. THIS PIECE OF SHIT.

  23. luigi

    September 15, 2021 at 3:38 pm

    Do people of Alberta, or Canada wonder how large of a bribe is required to purchase of the premiers of Canada? Justin Castro is bought and paid for….. the great awakening will be spectacular!
    Have your popcorn ready folks!

  24. Baron Not Baron

    September 15, 2021 at 3:27 pm

    Bahahahah he’s not introducing vaxpasses

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News

BC removes capacity limits in some areas, but only if you’re double vaccinated

The change comes into effect October 25, and it applies to indoor sporting events, concerts, theatres, weddings, funeral receptions outside of a funeral home, and organized parties.

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British Columbia will be seeing some restrictions eased for those who have can prove two doses of vaccination against COVID-19.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced Tuesday that capacity limits for events and gatherings throughout much of the province — where proof-of-vaccination is required — will be lifted.

The change comes into effect October 25, and it applies to indoor sporting events, concerts, theatres, weddings, funeral receptions outside of a funeral home, and organized parties.

Health officials will also be removing the requirement to stay seated at restaurants.

The changes do not apply to regional restrictions in effect in Interior Health, Northern Health, and eastern Fraser Valley.

Personal gatherings, both indoor and outdoor, are restricted to fully vaccinated people throughout the Northern Health region, with the exception of Terrace, Kitimat, Haida Gwaii, Prince Rupert, Stikine, and the Nisga’a areas.

Indoor mask requirements remain in effect for all indoor gatherings and events.

Reid Small is a BC correspondent for the Western Standard
rsmall@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/reidsmall

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WORLD WATCH: U.K. warns of new COVID variant as cases rise yet Japan numbers plummet

Experts are taking a close look at AY.4.2. to see how much of a threat it may pose, but say it is not yet considered a “variant of concern”.

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News reports out of the U.K. are linking an uptick in cases to a new variant that “could be 10 times more infectious than Delta,” yet Japan is seeing some of their lowest case counts since this time last year.

According to the latest official data out of the U.K., an increase in COVID-19 cases includes a genetically sequenced variant labelled AY.4.2 accounting for 6% of new cases.

Graph courtesy worldometers.info

The new strain, some call “Delta Plus”, is said to contain mutations that could give the virus “survival advantages” and could make it more contagious.

Experts are taking a close look at AY.4.2. to see how much of a threat it may pose, but say it is not yet considered a “variant of concern”.

Meanwhile, reports from Japan say a very different narrative where cases have mysteriously plummeted over the last two months.

Low case rates have not been the norm in Japan throughout the pandemic. However, despite the 2020 Summer Olympics being postponed to the summer of 2021 and Japan seeing some of the highest COVID-19 case rates in the world at times, the country has never implemented any full lockdowns.

Over the last two months, rates in Japan went from over 26,121 new cases recorded on August 22 to 494 new cases as of Monday.

Graph courtesy worldometers.info

Some are crediting the incredible turnaround to a late but rapid uptake in vaccinations. Others say it could have something to do with bad August weather in the latter part of the month that kept people home.

Officials are still trying to determine the cause of the huge decline in cases and experts are warning Japan could face another surge with the gradual waning of vaccine efficacy as well as heading into the colder winter months.

Melanie Risdon is a reporter with the Western Standard
mrisdon@westernstandardonline.com

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News

EXCLUSIVE: Chu vows not to resign, apologizes and speaks out on allegations

Chu speaks out after allegations against him come to light.

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Embattled Calgary Councillor Sean Chu says he has no intention of resigning, but has apologized to a woman he had a sexual encounter with 24 years ago.

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

City of Calgary officials confirmed Chu won the election race in Ward 4 by a mere 52 votes after allegations surfaced last week of his involvement in August of 1997 with a girl who was just 16 at the time.

“This was nothing but a political assassination,” said Chu.

Chu, who has represented Ward 4 since 2013, also fired back at some media reports which he claims were completely wrong.

Chu said he met the unidentified girl at a pub near Macleod Tr. and 94 Ave. S and not the Husky House restaurant downtown that some media had reported.

“Because it was a licensed establishment I thought the girl was at least 18 years old,” said Chu, who was in uniform with his partner at the time.

“I was single at the time and I thought some girl liked me.”

The Western Standard cannot confirm at this time if there is documentary evidence the encounter was at the Husky House or at the pub on Macleod Tr.

At some point in their interaction, Chu caressed the girl’s leg, an incident that later earned him a letter of reprimand on his file.

Chu said the girl seemed interested in him so when he was off duty he changed into civilian clothes and went back to the pub to meet the girl.

The evening continued with Chu and the girl eventually heading to his home.

Once there, the pair “started kissing and hugging, but there was no intercourse,” said Chu.

Chu admits there was “some touching underneath clothes”.

“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.

At one point Chu said he owned a shotgun, but denied that weapon was ever produced or shown in any way that night.

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

The Western Standard has not seen any documents that indicate the presence or absence of a firearm on the evening in question.

Chu said he does not drink alcohol, but added he didn’t know if the girl had been drinking.

After the incident, the girl reported the case to city police claiming she was sexually assaulted. That lead to nine years of investigations, court battles and appeals, with news of the case only leaking last week, days before the civil election.

There were never any sexual assault or weapons charges laid, and Chu says the letter of reprimand was the only discipline that came out of the entire process.

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.

Chu is now at the centre of a political storm with friends and supporters deserting him.

Premier Jason Kenney described the allegations as “appalling” but said he didn’t think there was any way for the province to remove a councillor who han’t been convicted under the Criminal Code.

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

Kenney said as much of the legal documents are under seal, it’s up to Chu to prove his innocence.

Calgary-Nose Hill MP Michelle Rempel Garner tweeted her disgust at the incident.

“I have supported Mr. Chu in the past, but firmly withdraw all such support in light of these reports. Believing women means walking the talk,” she tweeted.

“In light of the disciplinary action, as a result of inappropriate contact with a minor which has been reported by CBC Calgary, MP Rempel Garner is formally withdrawing her endorsement of Councillor Sean Chu and he is no longer a member of her Constituency Association.”

Rempel Garner tweet

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.”

It appears any bid to try and remove Chu would fail because he was not charged or convicted criminally.

Calgary police released a statement Monday about its investigation in 1997. It states:

“We want to reassure Calgarians that when this matter came to light in 1997 it was taken seriously by the Service and managed in accordance with the Police Act. This has been a complex legal matter with multiple complaints and investigations as well as appeals to the Alberta Law Enforcement Review Board. One of those decisions was overturned by the Alberta Court of Appeal. Ultimately, one allegation of misconduct was sustained through our internal disciplinary process.”

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

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