Review: The Kids

Sixteen-year olds can marry in Nova Scotia but require a court’s approval in Québec. Twelve-year olds can work in Alberta with a note from Mother, but in Manitoba must obtain permission of the Minister of Labour. “In Yukon, the law requires youth to stay at home until they are legally adults” – at 19 – “and those who leave before that are considered runaways,” explains The Law Is (Not) For Kids. Authors Ned Lecic and Marvin Zuker review the hodgepodge of provincial regulation of minors in this intriguing book.

“We think Canadian youth should be asking for more legal rights,” authors explain. “At the same time, we will say very little in this book about exactly what rights we think you should have. That is a very complex question, and we encourage you to think for yourself about what rights adults should give you, and to find good reasons why you should be given those rights.”

Vax Passport Use Wide Open

The Department of Citizenship yesterday said it placed no restrictions on domestic use of a vaccine passport for Canadians immunized against Covid, but did not expect it to be used for ID. Parliamentary committees have repeatedly opposed any attempts to introduce a national identity card, while one privacy commissioner last year ruled Canadians cannot be forced to surrender health information for ID purposes: 'No person shall require an individual to produce a health services number as a condition of receiving a product or service other than a health service.'

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Vax Challenge At $1,000 Each

Federal employees opposed to compulsory vaccination yesterday launched a $1,000-per worker fundraising drive to mount a legal challenge of the cabinet order. The campaign came as a former privacy commissioner described vaccine mandates as abhorrent: "We have to preserve our personal freedom and liberty and not give into the dictates of governments."

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CBC Will Seal The Buildings

The CBC yesterday said it will seal all its buildings from unvaccinated visitors in the most extreme Covid precaution of any Crown corporation. The ban on unimmunized people includes the general public, contractors and TV and radio guests: "Any individual who does not meet this requirement will be refused access."

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Travel Test OK ‘Til December

A threatened vaccine order on air and rail passengers will not apply until November 30 at the earliest and will not be compulsory, the Department of Transport said yesterday. Unvaccinated domestic travelers can board with proof of a negative Covid test, similar to rules for international travelers introduced last winter: 'Details on exceptions will be provided in coming days.'

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Gun Plan Is 34% Over Budget

A federal gun buy-back program is already 34 percent over budget, according to Access To Information records disclosed yesterday by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation. The Parliamentary Budget Office earlier warned an identical program in New Zealand doubled in cost: 'It has all the makings of another boondoggle.'

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RCMP Run Vast Bitcoin Sting

RCMP conducted a “vast” four-year undercover probe of bitcoin dealers suspected of laundering drug money in Canada, records show. The sting operation was prompted by tips from the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and tax auditors in Washington, D.C.: "Look man, do you even care where some of the money comes from?"

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We Never Asked Says CMHC

CMHC yesterday acknowledged it never consulted the Privacy Commissioner before collecting personal financial details on 8,951,718 homeowners including mortgage holders who had no business with CMHC. The Privacy Commissioner did not comment: "They need the trust of Canadians to operate."

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Gov’t Eyed Covid Tax Credits

Federal agencies considered direct aid to small business to stock their own Covid masks and other personal protective equipment, according to internal emails. The initiative was dropped: "Direct money, a tax credit, I’m not sure what smart Finance folks can assist with delivery ideas."

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Endorses A Wage Fixing Ban

Matthew Boswell, the $328,000-a year Commissioner of Competition, yesterday endorsed a Commons committee proposal to ban wage fixing. It follows an investigation of alleged collusion between supermarket chains on the 2020 rollback of a $2 an hour Covid bonus for employees: "Gaps in our cartel law mean those conspiracy provisions do not protect workers."

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TV Typos Breach Ethics Code

TV typos including innocent mistakes are a breach of newsroom ethics, a national broadcast regulator ruled yesterday. A St. John’s TV station was censured for garbling a handful of facts in a local story: "These facts were not factual."

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Mammoth CMHC Data Scoop Affecting 9,000,000 Canadians

CMHC in a mammoth data scoop compiled personal financial records on nearly nine million mortgage holders, according to Access To Information files. Data obtained without borrowers’ informed consent included personal income, municipal addresses, credit scores and household debts even for homeowners who were not CMHC customers: "No, we shouldn’t need a privacy impact assessment."

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Plan Jobsite Cafés & Lounges

The Department of Public Works plans to install cafés and lounge seating in federal offices so employees can “zone out, relax or stretch,” according to Access To Information records. Staff also proposed special seating near windows called “reflection areas” where employees might look outside: "Shouldn't we?"

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Unvaxed MPs Okay To Work

A Commons committee last night rejected compulsory vaccination for MPs. Proof of a negative Covid test will do just as well, Speaker Anthony Rota said in a statement: 'Details with respect to implementation are being developed.'

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Claim CNR Stymied Probe

Federal investigators accuse Canadian National Railway Co. of hampering an investigation into a collision that shut down a CN main line. The Transportation Safety Board asked that a federal judge order CN to cooperate under threat of “imprisonment or a fine.”

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