In a six-week series of interviews, Canadians with a variety of experiences discuss the major challenges our country is facing and how best to address them. This instalment deals with increasing the innovativeness of our economy.
Ratna Omidvar, executive director of the Global Diversity Exchange at the Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University, was interviewed on Oct. 16 by Elizabeth Pinnington, a consultant with Reos Partners. Continue reading →
Fan-Yee Suen, CTV Toronto
Published Wednesday, December 10, 2014 8:08AM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, December 10, 2014 8:09AM EST
A Toronto man is suing a bank, his real estate broker and police for nearly $250,000 after he claims he was racially profiled when he was falsely accused of trying to deposit a fraudulent $9,000 cheque.
Frantz St. Fleur, who was a customer of Scotiabank for nearly 10 years, says he walked into a Toronto-area branch on a Saturday morning in April. St. Fleur says he wanted to deposit a cheque issued by RE/MAX into his tax-free savings account. Continue reading →
In a six-week series of interviews, Canadians with a variety of experiences discuss the major challenges our country is facing and how best to address them. This instalment deals with taking our place in the world.
Yuen Pau Woo, former president and chief executive officer of the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada, was interviewed Sept. 4 by Monica Pohlmann, a consultant with Reos Partners.
Pohlmann: What keeps you up at night about what’s going on in Canada?
Woo: Complacency. Canada has been blessed with numerous natural endowments and political and institutional assets. But we are slipping on many indices and our position in the world could deteriorate sharply. The usual story for why Canada didn’t fall into a more severe recession in 2008 is that we have strong banks and a good financial regulatory system – for example, that we didn’t have a subprime mortgage problem like the U.S. That’s all true. But we overlook the fact that China saved Canada from a more severe recession. If you look at what kept growth from falling even further between 2008 and 2011, the answer is Chinese demand. Exports from Canada to China doubled between 2008 and 2013. Exports from Canada to the rest of the world, including to the U.S., still have not caught up to the levels they were in 2007. Continue reading →
Ratna Omidvar: I want to focus my remarks on diaspora leadership, because I think a discussion on the rise and influence of immigrants in the areas of trade and investment must be about the rise and influence of political and business leaders who are immigrants.
In other words, it’s not the size of the diaspora communities in Canada that makes them influential, it’s the success of individuals within those communities. For example, how does a Canadian bank expand in Latin America? A successful business model aside, they will be better able to attract those markets by employing people who understand Latin America, and just as important, who have business connections in Peru, Columbia, Mexico, and Chile.
The good news is that diverse talent is a Canadian strength. We boast some of the world’s most diverse cities, Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal. Toronto is Canada’s most diverse city, with more than half its residents not born in Canada. Close to half (47%) are visible minorities. Together, we comprise more than 200 distinct ethnicities and there are over 140 languages and dialects spoken. Continue reading →
Zahra Abdille, found dead with her two sons on Saturday, had fled a violent relationship and stayed in a safe house with her two young children last year, according to the executive director of Dr. Roz’s Healing Place.
A slain Toronto nurse fled a violent relationship to stay with her two young sons in a safe house while she tried to gain custody of her children last year, according to abused women’s centre Dr. Roz’s Healing Place.
On Saturday afternoon, Zahra Abdille, 43, and her sons, Faris, 13, and Zain, 8, were found dead in the same East York apartment they ran from last July, the centre’s executive director Roz Roach told the Star Tuesday.
Roach said the family stayed in the centre’s shelter for three weeks while Abdille battled for the custody of her children.
During her stay at the centre, the Toronto Public Health nurse went to court twice to fight for custody, but Abdille did not qualify for legal aid and could not afford a lawyer, Roach said.
When Abdille and her sons arrived at the centre on July 10, she told staff she was running away from a long-term violent relationship, Roach, who has a PhD in health and human sciences, said.
Abdille had escaped war-torn Somalia and arrived into Toronto in the late 1990s.She had no family in Canada, Roach said.
Roach says Abdille’s file Dr. Roz’s Healing Place states that she met her partner in 1997 and the couple married a year later in Toronto. Continue reading →
TORONTO — Canada’s public safety minister said Thursday he was “shocked and appalled” after a New Democratic Party MP rose in the House of Commons to commemorate Tamil Heroes Day, which honours fallen Tamil Tigers rebels.
Steven Blaney urged Rathika Sitsabaiesan, a Sri Lankan-born rookie MP, to apologize “to veterans and all Canadians” for her statement that called the day “an important event” and likened it to Remembrance Day. Continue reading →
Decision-making process called into question; University says student needs were their priority
Taylor Lasota // GAZETTE
This story was updated on Nov. 26 at 9:30 a.m.
Western’s longest-serving chaplain, along with four of his colleagues, has resigned in protest over the recently announced move of the Chaplains’ Services offices and a dedicated Muslim prayer space in the University Community Centre.
Rev. Michael Bechard, Western’s Roman Catholic chaplain, submitted his resignation and those of Janet Loo, Annette Donovan Panchaud, Melissa Page Nichols and Maija Wilson from the UWO Chaplains’ Association, to University President Amit Chakma on Friday.
The University announced last week that the current Muslim prayer room in University College would be moved along with the Chaplains’ Services offices to one space in the basement of the UCC. In addition, the current multi-faith space in the UCC will no longer be used.
Bechard’s concerns are two-fold. He explained that the principle behind having a dedicated space exclusively for one faith group is contrary to how the UWO Chaplains’ Association advocates for faith space on campus. Additionally, he claimed that the decision-making process was flawed and only included certain groups. Continue reading →
By Reis Pagtakhan, for CBC News Posted: Nov 19, 2014 8:34 PM CT Last Updated: Nov 20, 2014 6:45 AM CT
When discussing issues of racism and discrimination, governments, academics and civic leaders often promote “tolerance” as a way to combat these problems. As the argument goes, if Canadians tolerate people of different races, religions, sexual orientations and backgrounds, Canada will be a much stronger society.
A number of years ago, I read an article in which someone argued that merely tolerating someone else is an extremely low bar. By definition, when a person has to tolerate someone or something, that person has to endure or accept someone or something they find to be, at best, unpleasant.
People tolerate things ranging from pain, abuse and depression to minor annoyances such as boring movies, noisy neighbours, insects and inclement weather. Continue reading →
REGINA – A Saskatchewan junior hockey team is under fire after unveiling a new mascot that critics are calling offensive to Middle Eastern people.
Prince Albert Raiders spokeswoman Amber Pratt said the mascot’s costume is based on the Western Hockey League team’s original logo introduced in 1982 which depicts an Arabian raider character holding a sword and a hockey stick.
“The version that we brought to life is happy, with a big smile on his face,” she wrote in an email on Tuesday.
“He wears hockey pants and a hockey jersey. He is a positive symbol of Raider history and was loved by fans when introduced on Friday night.”
Pratt said she is surprised by the criticism and the organization has received way more positive comments than negative.
But Rhonda Rosenberg, executive director of the Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan, said the mascot plays into possible discrimination.
“The idea of a somewhat violent Muslim man is a stereotype that is really difficult for a lot of people to live with,” she said.
Rosenberg added that if a team uses a mascot representing a particular cultural group “at the very least they need to check in with some people who are of that background.” Continue reading →