Mayor Atchison reaches milestone, confirms bid to run for fifth term

SASKATOON  – He’s done what no Saskatoon mayor has done before – today, October 27, 2015, Don Atchison becomes the city’s longest serving mayor. Atchison was sworn in exactly 13 years ago – on October 27, 2003.

October 27, 2015 – Don Atchison becomes Saskatoon’s longest serving mayor.

File / Global News

“When I started as a city councillor 21 years ago, I never dreamt that I would become the mayor,” said Atchison.

Both Henry Dayday and Cliff Wright served one day short of 13 years. In 2012 mayoral terms extended to four years instead of three and with that, Don Atchison now embarks on a milestone 13 years as mayor.

READ MORE: City of Saskatoon welcomes provincial budget

ChangSha Night Net


  • Saskatoon says goodbye to long-serving mayor

  • Infrastructure still biggest need: Atchison

Notable projects under his leadership include his vision for River Landing, the completion of Circle Drive with the construction of the South Bridge, and also his effort to make an appearance at an infinite number of community events – events that often take him away from his family and wife.

“The only event that I have been to every year, since becoming the mayor, is our anniversary. I’ve missed kid’s birthdays, Mardele’s, I’ve never been at home for my birthday and you know a lot of times there’s a question of why and with the children and with Mardele, it’s always been accepted,” he said.

Atchison confirmed with Global News he will run again in the next election, set for autumn 2016.


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Okanagan tire company independently tests its products for winter driving

VERNON – A well-known Okanagan based automotive company claims it’s the first Canadian tire retailer to independently test tires in winter conditions.

Kal Tire says it hired an independent testing company to rate 19 of its most popular tires for ten conditions including braking, cornering, hydroplaning and road noise.

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“We wanted to give drivers greater and more relevant information about how tires really perform in everyday winter conditions in Canada, and we also wanted to be able to show people how 3-season (all-season), all-weather and winter tires compare in their performance,” says Kal Tire spokesperson,Carey Hull, in a news release. “Between the range of tests conducted, the calibre of the drivers and the technology used to capture the data, this is an incredibly sophisticated and comprehensive tire testing program.”

The key findings:
Winter tires, on average, stopped 14.68 metres sooner on ice compared to 3-seasons
-Winter tires stopped in 30.1 m
-All-weather tires stopped in 35.5 m
-3-season tires stopped in 44.8 m

All-weather tires, on average, stop 77 cm sooner on wet pavement (from 70 km/hour) and 33 cm sooner on dry pavement (from 90 km/hour) compared to 3-season tires.

Winter tires are nearly three times better at holding corners on ice than 3-seasons.

Studless winter tires aren’t noisy. On average, all-weather and 3-season tires emitted the same amount of road noise, and winter tires were 1.6 per cent quieter than all-weather and 3-season tires.

On slush straight-line tests, professional drivers rated:
-Winter tires an average of 4.7 out of 5 stars
-All-weather tires an average of 4.3 out of 5 stars
-3-season tires an average of 2.4 out of 5 stars

Comprehensive results are available at Kal Tire outlets and on-line at kaltire长沙桑拿/testing.

The company says it will release test results on a further 57 passenger and truck tires in the spring.

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After peaceful split, Mi’gmaq chief says government should improve consultations

MONCTON – The Assembly of First Nations Chiefs in New Brunswick will continue to exist until the next fiscal year, says Mi’gmaq Chief George Ginnish.

Then, the Mi’gmaq chiefs will form their own group. This comes after New Brunswick’s Maliseet chiefs announced they would be forming their own representative body, leaving the Assembly.

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“The Mi’gmaq First Nations have said it’s important for us to work together especially given the approach that government and business take in regards to the consultation,” Chief Ginnish said in an interview with Global News Monday.

Chief Ginnish stressed the split was peaceful, that it happened because of a difference of opinions, not out of malice.

“We still have an Atlantic Policy Congress that represents the entire Atlantic and we’ll work together with anybody that sees the benefit of doing that,” he said.

“As it is now, this group has decided that they’re better to represent themselves. That’s not an issue with us. We’re going to continue to work on behalf of our people to the best of our ability. That’s our responsibility.”

He said his disappointment lies with the provincial and federal governments, that they’re not completely adhering to their duty to consult aboriginal groups at a critical time.

Ginnish, chief of the Eel Ground First Nation, says his people have a right to be consulted and included in all discussions, including on major projects like the Energy East Pipeline and Sisson Brook Mine.

“This is not where we expected it would be. It’s not living up to the spirit of the agreement. We’ve had to do that with the previous two premiers and we’ll do that again with the current premier,” he said.

He said Mi’gmaq First Nations are not looking to stop all development but that their Aboriginal and Treaty Rights must be respected during the process.

In March, Premier Brian Gallant said at least one person in each government department would be trained on the duty to consult, which is the Crown’s obligation to consult aboriginal groups on decisions.

When asked, repeatedly, about progress, Global News received a statement from Ed Doherty, Minister Responsible for the Aboriginal Affairs Secretariat.

“Government will work with the First Nations community to look for opportunities in areas of partnership and co-operation,” it read. “We respect the heritage and culture of our First Nations community and our government remains committed to working with all First Nation Chiefs and councils.”

“One of our elders speaks to this. He says for too many years, we’ve stood by the side of the road and we’ve watched trucks drive by with our resources,” Ginnish said.

“We’ve had lip service from government saying we want to talk about revenue, resource-sharing, it’s important that First Nations be part of that. The talk has been great but it’s time to walk the talk now.”


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Thousands of young people pack Saddledome for WE Day

CALGARY —; A whopping 16,000 excited students from across Alberta jammed into the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary on Tuesday for WE Day.

The inspirational event began in Ontario 20 years ago, and has since spread to three countries. WE Day celebrates the difference young people make in their world through volunteerism.

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  • We Day rocks students at the Saddledome

    The enthusiasm of empowerment at We Day

Students from over 650 schools around the province were joined by world-renowned speakers and performers including The Band Perry, Marlee Matlin, Henry Winkler, Kardinal Offishall, SonReal, Silken Laumann, Francesco Yates, the Kenyan Boys Choir, JRDN, Jessi Cruickshank, Joseph Boyden, Spencer West and more.

“Every time I walk into the WE Day stadium I’m in awe of the commitment and passion I witness in every single one of the young people in the audience,” said Oscar-winning actress and social activist, Marlee Matlin, in a statement. “These individuals are continuing to create such positive change in the world and WE Day is a platform to help empower youth to lead the change we need to see.”

Matlin uses sign language to share her personal story about overcoming obstacles, and encourage youth to turn their dreams into realities.

Annually, 200,000 students coast to coast, from over 10,000 schools, earn their tickets to WE Day by volunteering in their communities.

“By bringing together 16,000 young change-makers today, students from across Alberta will know that they’re not alone and that collectively, they are making their voices heard,” said co-founder Craig Kielburger.

Alberta students logged more than 560,800 hours for local and global causes and raised $1.8 million in support of local and global organizations.


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Near-death Saint-Lazare accident leads to call for safety

SAINT-LAZARE —; Andre de la Bastide is thankful to be alive after surviving a harrowing crash along chemin St-Louis.

“I was lucky,” he said.

He was also good. Because he works as a heavy equipment technician, he had special training.

He was heading southeast on the road toward Bedard avenue in Saint-Lazare.

The sunlight shone right into his eyes at rush hour and he found himself having to swerve right to miss a car that had drifted into his lane.

He slammed his Mercedes van into a hydro pole, shearing it off and crushing his vehicle.

The pole missed him, but live electrical lines were down nearby.

“I could hear the crackling of the electricity.”

Careful not to touch metal, he crawled out of the wreckage and a neighbour called 911.

He now feels lucky to be alive, and he wants the city of Saint-Lazare to add railings and cut branches to make the area safe.

City officials said they’re looking into the matter.

ChangSha Night Net


  • Traffic Nightmare: Montreal West residents angry over backups

  • City of Montreal wants safer streets for cyclists and cars


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Blue Jays slugger Encarnacion undergoes sports hernia surgery, expected back for spring

Toronto Blue Jays slugger Edwin Encarnacion has undergone surgery to repair a sports hernia.

The team said in a release that the designated hitter/first baseman is expected to recover in time for spring training.

Encarnacion helped form one of the most feared batting orders during the regular season, belting 39 homers and driving in 111 runs.

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All went great!! Family & friends thanks for your prayers. Thanks God,you are the best doctor🙏🙏🙌🙌💪💪..todo salio bien familia y amigos gracias por las oraciones.gracias mi Dios tu eres el Mejor Doctor del mundo 🙏🙏🙌🙌💪💪

A post shared by Edwin Encarnacion (@encadwin) on Oct 27, 2015 at 8:58am PDT

He had a .333 average with a homer and three RBIs in Toronto’s five-game win over Texas in their American League Division Series, but his production tailed off in the AL Championship Series.

He hit .227 with two RBIs as Kansas City dispatched Toronto in six games.

ChangSha Night Net


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Rushton double-homicide case sees major delay in court proceedings – Halifax

HALIFAX – A Nova Scotia man accused of double murder will not be starting his trial as planned this week.

Gerald Ashley Rushton, 49, is facing two counts of first-degree murder. It’s alleged he killed his common-law wife, Elizabeth MacPherson, 53, and her daughter, Brittany, 24 two years ago.

The bodies of the two women were discovered on December 27, 2013, in their home on Pictou Road in Truro.

Police have never said how either woman was killed. Rushton was also found injured inside the home and taken to hospital.

His trial was scheduled to start Tuesday morning at Nova Scotia Supreme Court in Halifax, but a last minute request for a change of lawyers for Rushton means for an undetermined delay in the case.

Elizabeth and Brittany Macpherson were found dead in their home in Truro on December 27, 2013.


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“Mr. Rushton advised me this morning that he no longer wishes me to represent him in this matter,” said lawyer Terry Sheppard, who had been representing Rushton since shortly after he was charged with the murders.

“It is a burden on the system for sure, but people must keep in mind that these are very, very difficult decisions, very difficult cases. Two people have lost their lives here. Mr. Rushton stands accused of that. The crown wants to put him in jail for at least the next 25-years and possibly for his life,” Sheppard said.

The Crown Attorneys working on the case were shocked by the last minute developments.

“It was literally minutes before we were due to commence this,” said Crown Attorney Alison Brown. “It is a huge disappointment from our perspective.”

A preliminary hearing held earlier this year determined there was enough evidence for Rushton to go to trial on two counts of first-degree murder. The evidence presented at that hearing is under a publication ban and cannot be reported.

A jury was selected Monday, and five weeks had been set aside for the case. The jury has now been dismissed, and the case adjourned.

The next scheduled court date for Rushton is now November 26. At that time, the judge will check on the status of the accused obtaining a new lawyer.

©2015Global News

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Judicial recount finds Liberal Amarjeet Sohi won Edmonton Mill Woods riding

EDMONTON – After a close race in which two candidates were separated by less than 80 votes, a judicial recount determined Liberal candidate Amarjeet Sohi won the seat in Edmonton Mill Woods in the federal election.

The judicial count found the difference between Sohi and his Conservative candidate Tim Uppal was 92 votes.

ChangSha Night Net


  • Conservative Tim Uppal granted judicial recount in Edmonton Mill Woods following Liberal win

  • Verification count confirms Amarjeet Sohi won Edmonton Mill Woods for Liberals

“I feel honoured and humbled that the people of Edmonton Mill Woods have given me this opportunity to represent them in Ottawa,” Sohi said over the phone from Ottawa Thursday. “I commit to work hard and diligently on their behalf.”

The initial count found Sohi won the seat by just 80 votes.

A verification count confirmed the win for Sohi, but found he beat Uppal by 79 votes.

READ MORE: Verification count confirms Amarjeet Sohi won Edmonton Mill Woods for Liberals 

That difference was not enough to trigger an automatic recount, but Uppal requested a judicial recount and the Chief Electoral Officer of Canada agreed.

Lawyer Jonathan Denis, who is representing Uppal, said they had information from 18 different witnesses about voting irregularities in Edmonton Mill Woods.

“Irregularities happen almost every time you have an election, but in this particular case there were only 79 votes separating first from second and my client simply wants the public to be confident as to what the result is, whatever it is,” said Denis.

READ MORE: Conservative Tim Uppal granted judicial recount in Edmonton-Mill Woods following Liberal win 

The count was done by a judge of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta. It started on Tuesday and the result of the count was released Thursday afternoon.

The results will be published on the Elections Canada website once the recount is completed.


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What’s the difference between a school lockdown and a ‘hold and secure’?

It’s been a busy school year, as we’ve already seen multiple GTA schools implement a lockdown or a “hold and secure” in response to some sort of a threat. So what does that mean, and what’s the difference?

A hold and secure occurs when there’s a threat in the general vicinity of a school, but not on, or very close to school property. Examples might include a crime in progress, police pursuit or search in the same neighbourhood as the school.

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The school’s outer doors are locked during a hold and secure but classes continue as normal inside. Students are safe are generally considered safe so long as they don’t venture outside.

A lockdown is a more extreme procedure, when a threat is near or inside a school.

During a lockdown, efforts are made to minimize access and visibility throughout the school.

The school’s outer doors are locked and students are kept in classrooms or designated waiting areas. Lights are turned off, curtains or blinds are closed and all windows are covered to obscure visibility into classrooms.  Cellphone use is restricted and school phones are not answered.

Inner doors are locked where possible and only emergency services personnel can enter or exit the building. Staff members are designated to prevent anyone else from leaving the school.

School principals have the discretion to declare a lockdown, but usually do so on the advice of police.

Toronto-area school boards direct schools to conduct a minimum of two lockdown drills in each academic year.

One rarer form of emergency procedure is called a shelter in place. These take place in case of an extreme weather of environmental threat, like a severe storm or a noxious chemical spill. As the name implies, students and staff will remain in the school and take steps to protect from the specific threat, such as by covering windows, doors and air vents.


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SXSW under fire after cancelling panels on harassment in gaming community

UPDATE (Oct. 28): South by South West interactive director Hugh Forrest addressed the growing controversy in a blog post Tuesday night.

While Forrest did not confirm whether the cancelled gaming panels would be reinstated, he noted festival organizers are working with local law enforcement to assess the seriousness of the threats they have received.

“We want the SXSW community to know that we hear and understand your frustrations and concerns about the recent cancellation of two SXSW Gaming panels,” read the blog post.

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“The safety of our speakers, participants and staff is always our top priority. Moving forward, we are also evaluating several programming solutions as we continue to plan for an event that will be safe, meaningful and enjoyable for all involved.”


South by South West (SXSW) Interactive festival has come under fire after cancelling two panels meant to discuss the ongoing issues of harassment and bullying found in the video game community.

In a blog post published Monday night, the arts festival announced it was pulling the plug on two panels – “SavePoint: A Discussion on the Gaming Community” and “Level Up: Overcoming Harassment in Games” – after receiving numerous threats of violence directly related to the talks.

The panels were not specifically about “Gamergate” – the 2014 movement surrounding sexism and the harassment of women in the online gaming community – but they did feature female panelists that were involved in the viral online debate.

“SXSW prides itself on being a big tent and a marketplace of diverse people and diverse ideas,” said SXSW interactive director Hugh Forrest in a blog post.

“However, preserving the sanctity of the big tent at SXSW Interactive necessitates that we keep the dialogue civil and respectful. If people cannot agree, disagree and embrace new ways of thinking in a safe and secure place that is free of online and offline harassment, then this marketplace of ideas is inevitably compromised.”

But the decision to cancel the panels has created a controversy of its own – with many people suggesting the move validates harassment as a tactic.

On Tuesday, online media giant Buzzfeed released a statement saying it would withdraw its participation from the SXSW festival unless organizers reinstated the two panels.

In a letter addressed to Forrest, Buzzfeed president Ze Frank, publisher Dao Nguyen and editor-in-chief Ben Smith expressed their disappointment in the decision and urged organizers to find a way to safely host the panels.

“Digital harassment — of activists of all political stripes, journalists, and women in those fields or participating in virtually any other form of digital speech — has emerged as an urgent challenge for the tech companies for whom your conference is an important forum,” read the letter.

“We will feel compelled to withdraw them if the conference can’t find a way to do what those other targets of harassment do every day — to carry on important conversations in the face of harassment. We hope you can support the principle of free speech and engage a vital issue facing us and other constituents on the event.”


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