July 20th, 2024

In the news today: Trudeau in Nunavut, winter causing disruptions across Canada

By The Canadian Press on January 18, 2024.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks to reporters in the foyer of the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2023. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be in Nunavut today to participate in a signing ceremony about transferring responsibilities for public lands and resources to the territory from the federal government. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Here is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to bring you up to speed on what you need to know today…

Prime Minister Trudeau in Nunavut for ceremony

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be in Nunavut today to participate in a signing ceremony about transferring responsibilities for public lands and resources to the territory from the federal government.

In 2019, Trudeau’s then-Crown-Indigenous relations minister, Carolyn Bennett, signed an agreement-in-principle with Nunavut’s then-premier intended to serve as a guide for negotiating a final agreement.

Nunavut was created as its own territory in 1999 and in 2008, it entered the process of gaining control over its lands and resources by signing a negotiation protocol with former prime minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government.

Wintry conditions persist in parts of Canada

A winter storm closed schools and disrupted flights in B.C. on Wednesday, with snow expected to continue in some parts of the province.

Snowfall in southeastern B.C. was expected to taper off by this morning, while 10 to 20 centimetres is expected on parts of Vancouver Island between this afternoon and Friday morning before potentially turning into freezing rain.

All public schools in Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley were closed Wednesday, while Vancouver International Airport says flight schedules could continue to be affected with winter weather persisting.

Here’s what else we’re watching …

Gambling sites used for money laundering: agency

Canada’s financial intelligence agency warns that illicit cash is being laundered through online gambling sites that provide a variety of ways to disguise shady funds.

In a newly published bulletin, the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada highlights the criminal exploitation of legitimate and unlicensed digital wagering operations.

The centre, known as Fintrac, notes the popularity of online gambling grew during the COVID-19 pandemic and has been fuelled by the 2021 legalization of single-event sports betting in Canada.

Stabbing inquest details difficult for families

Family members of people killed during a stabbing rampage on a Saskatchewan First Nation say it has been difficult to hear the details of their deaths during a coroner’s inquest.

Stewart Head, whose family members were among those murdered by Myles Sanderson, says some of the details are horrific.

Sanderson killed 11 people and injured 17 others on James Smith Cree Nation and in the nearby village of Weldon on Sept. 4, 2022.

The 32-year-old died in police custody a few days later.

Ethical debate over police use of genealogy tests

A forensic genealogy expert says the field is still in the research and development phase, and while its value is clear for solving crime, the ethics debate has a long way to go.

Nicole Novroski, an assistant professor of forensic genetics at the University of Toronto, says legislation around police use of DNA analysis to identify genetic links to people involved in unsolved crimes hasn’t caught up to the science.

The United States introduced guidelines for forensic genealogical DNA analysis in 2019, which Novroski says could be used as a framework in Canada.

The debate was highlighted in an investigation this week by The Canadian Press revealing how undercover police in B.C. secretly. collected the DNA of people attending a 2018 Kurdish celebration.

Deadline to get partial CEBA forgiveness arrives

The deadline for Canadian businesses to repay pandemic loans and receive partial forgiveness has arrived, as business groups say it could mean closure for many firms.

Hundreds of thousands of businesses and non-profits received a Canada Emergency Business Account loan of up to $60,000 during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Up to one-third of the loans could be forgiven if the outstanding amount is repaid by today, otherwise the debt will convert into a three-year loan with five per cent annual interest.

Businesses also have the option to refinance the loan with a financial institution, giving them until March 28 to set up the arrangement and still be eligible for partial forgiveness.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 18, 2024.

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