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WATCH: Lawyer weighs in on confusion around vax passports for kids rec

Airdrie lawyer Derek From sheds light on the new amendments made by Calgary city councillors for the city’s vaccine passport bylaw.

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Calgary city councillors voted unanimously on Tuesday to officially include youth sports and recreation activities in the vaccine passport program.

According to Airdrie lawyer Derek From, the original wording for Bylaw 65M2021 “implied” youth sports were “in-scope” with respect to the province’s Restriction Exemption Program (REP).

“Now, with this amendment, it is explicit,” said From, pointing to a subsection of the amendment which states, in part: “… for the purposes of this bylaw an ‘eligible business’ also includes a youth physical activity, youth performance activity or youth recreational activity.”

Although city administration recommended the rules in Calgary should be the same as provincial ones, according to From, the amendment, “demonstrates they are ignoring the province and have rewritten the law, which they aren’t allowed to do,” he said, adding provincial law is superior to city bylaws.

With respect to the Government of Alberta website defining requirements of the REP, it states: “Youth physical activity, performance activity, and recreational activity where all participants are under the age of 18,” are considered out of scope for the program.

Watch as lawyer Derek From provides an update on the amended bylaw and what it means for youth in sports moving forward in the City of Calgary.

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

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5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. Frank Jack

    January 12, 2022 at 4:23 pm

    Looks like Mrs. Gondek is steadfast in her commitment to become the worst mayor in the history of Calgary, which was a tall order to begin with given her predecessor.

  2. Dominic Ieraci

    January 12, 2022 at 12:46 pm

    I’d just be happy if I was allowed to watch my daughter play soccer in the city-owned facility that I pay exorbitant amounts of property tax on in Grande Prairie. Since I’m a leper I have no rights even though I’m forced to pay for the service. Do any lawyers care about this situation???

  3. Ben Wilson

    January 12, 2022 at 8:33 am

    I understood from Rebel news that parents in Calgary are Challenging this.

    It’s hard to believe not one Councillor apposed this change.

    We need J Farkas back!

    Gondek might be the first politician to be recalled under Alberta’s Politician recall legislation. If it’s gets made into law.

  4. Leslie Solar

    January 11, 2022 at 10:41 pm

    well, it will be up to some calgarian to bring a legal challenge. I doubt the province is going to quickly amend their stuff to jive with the Gondek BS.

  5. Sn0man

    January 11, 2022 at 5:58 pm

    Who wants to bet the province does absolutely nothing about this, but instead bend over and take it in the shorts?

    Anybody?

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Manitobans shipped to US for surgery

The move is an effort to deal with the province’s backlog of more than 153,000 surgical and diagnostic procedures, blamed on COVID-19 health care demands.

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About 300 Manitobans awaiting spinal surgery will be sent to Sanford Medical Centre in Fargo ND for their operations.

The move is an effort to deal with the province’s backlog of more than 153,000 surgical and diagnostic procedures, blamed on COVID-19 health care demands.

Patients who have been on the spinal surgery waiting list for more than a year will be given priority. Some may be headed south of the border by the end of January.

Health Minister Audrey Gordon and members of the Diagnostic and Surgical Recovery Task Force are expected to provide an update at a 2 p.m. CST news conference.

The province may also be contemplating sending joint-surgery patients to Sanford.

“We acknowledge the suffering. We acknowledge the waits,” said Dr. Ed Buchel, the provincial surgery lead for Manitoba Shared Health told CBC.

Sending patients elsewhere in Canada isn’t an option because every provincial health care system is overwhelmed with demands from the Omicron variant, he said.

Health staff have been diverted from operating rooms to care for COVID-19 patients while surgery backlogs escalated.

Patients suffering broken backs, unstable spines or cancer are deemed too risky for surgery in the U.S.

Preference will be given to those with serious conditions needing urgent attention, yet are able to travel by vehicle to Sanford, 360 km from Winnipeg.

Doctors Manitoba hopes this is a short-term measure.

“Sending patients out of Manitoba for care is not ideal, but we understand the task force has very few local options right now because of the shortage of staff and the current surge in Omicron hospital admissions,” spokesperson Keir Johnson said in a statement to CBC.

At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Manitoba was the only province that transferred critical care patients, 57 in all, out-of-province.

To be updated…

Slobodian is the Senior Manitoba Columnist for the Western Standard lslobodian@westernstandardonline.com

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WORLD WATCH: UK announces COVID restrictions are over

Beginning Thursday, January 27, the UK government will bring an end to “mandatory certifications” — vaccine passports.

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The UK government will no longer require vaccine passports and mask mandates as of next Thursday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the House of Commons.

“We can return to plan A in England and allow plan B regulations to expire,” said Johnson, in a live address on Wednesday. 

Beginning Thursday, January 27, the UK government will bring an end to “mandatory certifications” — vaccine passports.

Johnson said organizations will be permitted to continue the voluntary pass but the government will “end the compulsory use of COVID status certification in England.”

The government also announced it will no longer require people to work from home.

With the announcement the government will no longer mandate the wearing of face masks, the house erupted with cheers.

Johnson confirmed students would no longer be required to wear facemasks in classrooms as of Thursday, but added the government will continue to suggest the use of masks in public places.

“We will trust the judgement of the British people and no longer criminalize anyone who chooses not to wear one,” said Johnson.

Restrictions on visits to care homes will also be eased across the UK.

Johnson said some measures will remain in place including self-isolation.

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

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CTF calls for tax cuts as inflation hits 30 year high

The December 2021 consumer price index hit 4.8%, according to Statistics Canada on Wednesday.

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The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is calling on the Canadian government to reduce taxes to help people with the rising cost of living.

The December 2021 consumer price index hit 4.8%, according to Statistics Canada on Wednesday.

“Canadians are fueling up at the pumps and then worrying about whether they have enough left over for ground beef at the grocery store,” said Franco Terrazzano, federal director of the CTF.

“Inflation is a key economic issue facing Canadian families and our politicians need to wake up and provide some relief.”

Canadians who make more than $64,900 are going to see an extra $396 in payroll tax bills this year, according to the CTF.

The federal carbon tax increased twice during the pandemic and will increase again to 11 cents per litre of gasoline on April 1, 2022.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said carbon tax will be increasing to nearly 40 cents per litre by 2030, as well as a second carbon tax is being developed that could add another 11 cents per litre.

Additionally, the federal government is planning for an increase in alcohol taxes for the third time during the pandemic on April 1.

“High taxes and soaring prices are making the tough times tougher in Canada,” said Terrazzano.

“While other countries are cutting taxes, all we get from Canadian politicians are higher tax bills. It’s time for Ottawa to provide some tax relief and make life in Canada a little more affordable.”

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole also called on Trudeau to take immediate action.

“For the first time in 30 years, prices are up 4.8% compared to a year ago. Millions of Canadians are feeling the pinch of inflation in their daily lives. Families and seniors are falling behind and they see the Trudeau government doing nothing to give them a break,” said O’Toole in a statement.

“Food is more expensive. Gas and home heating are costing more. Rents in many cities are skyrocketing by double digits and home ownership is out of reach for millions as prices are up a staggering 26.6% in just one year.   

“More Canadians are struggling to meet ends meet, young people are giving up on home ownership and nearly half of all Canadians are worried about their financial security for the upcoming year. The high-tax, high-debt lockdown agenda of the Trudeau government has set the stage for inflation and COVID policies are making supply chain challenges worse. We are already seeing alarming shortages on shelves leading to higher prices.”

The CTF noted Spain was rated lower than Canada on the 2021 misery index, but that country’s government is taking action giving citizens breaks by cutting added tax on electricity from 21% to 10% until April 30.

South Korea, India, and several states across America have also reduced fuel taxes.

Ewa Sudyk is a reporter with the Western Standard
esudyk@westernstandardonline.com

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