TORONTO: During rapid-fire exchanges, mayoral candidate Olivia Chow translates in her head

Chow responds to column on her English-speaking ability

OLIVER MOORE The Globe and Mail

Published Last updated 

Olivia Chow likes to say that she’s not a “fast” or “smooth” talker. It’s a self-deprecating way to explain her occasional struggles to be heard amid bombastic mayoral debates.

It’s also an acknowledgement that her English – while perfectly understandable – isn’t as good as her opponents. (…)

“It may look to some voters, many of whom struggle with English, as if she doesn’t care enough about communicating with them to get her nouns and verbs to agree,” Rick Salutin wrote in Friday’s Toronto Star. “I’m not saying that’s so, I know it’s not. But we’re talking about impressions.”

Ms. Chow came to Canada from Hong Kong at the age of 13 and her background prompted racist heckling during at least one debate.

Her people have said that she is not as fast during rapid-fire exchanges because she translates in her head as she goes. The possible political drawbacks of her speaking ability have generally remained a taboo subject for pundits, though. And when the issue was raised she was quick to hit back.

“[He] needs to open [his] eyes and look at what this city represents,” Ms. Chow said Friday morning. A lot of people that live in this city speaks with an accent. But they become top surgeons, top scientists. It’s quite astounding that you have journalists that want to pick on my language capacity. I have no problem communicating, I don’t believe.”

The analysis was part of a list of “potential incitements” that Mr. Salutin suggested could be swaying public opinion. But Ms. Chow brushed it off.

“Actions speak louder than words, right,” she said. “You want a mayor that can get things done.”

Follow Oliver Moore on Twitter: @moore_oliver

“Ghost” immigration consultants alive and kicking, only few prosecuted

Despite growing complaints, few “ghost” immigration consultants are prosecuted

New laws mean heavier sentences and fines for unscrupulous immigration consultants, but many say it’s still a Wild West out there.

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Marsha Rose Marie Tomlin, left, was assisted by licensed immigration consultant Marva Yvonne Kollar, right, in her complaint about an unlicensed consultant. 

NICHOLAS KEUNG / TORONTO STAR Order this photo

Marsha Rose Marie Tomlin, left, was assisted by licensed immigration consultant Marva Yvonne Kollar, right, in her complaint about an unlicensed consultant.

 By:  Immigration reporter, Published on Sat Oct 11 2014

Three years after Ottawa launched a new regulatory body to police the immigration consultant industry, critics say there are as many illegal “ghost” consultants as ever preying on would-be immigrants.

“It is still a Wild West,” says Francisco Rico-Martinez, co-director of Toronto’s FCJ Refugee Centre. “The ghosts still operate out there. People still fall victim to them.”

Experts say that despite stiffer new penalties for those who operate without licences or oversight, unscrupulous consultants continue to take advantage of refugee claimants and immigration applicants struggling to navigate Canada’s confusing and ever-changing system.

A few of these ghost consultants, who sometimes counsel clients to commit fraud, have been arrested and charged under the new laws, which provide for up to five years in jail and $100,000 in fines.

Rico-Martinez complains that when complaints are made to the Burlington-based Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC), it has no power to police ghost consultants.

Instead, it’s up to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to investigate. Continue reading

Tim Murray: The Department of Grovelling Apologies

Announcing  the formation of D.O.G.A.

The Department of Grovelling Apologies

tim apologyNavigating through a labyrinth of government agencies, departments and ministries to locate the appropriate service provider or information source can be exhausting and time-consuming to say the least.  To remedy this problem, governments at both the federal and provincial level have established  central directories which efficiently steer citizens to the department that would best be able address their questions.  “Inquiry BC”, “Service BC” and “Service Canada” are examples that come to mind.

These centres are one-stop points of contact for hundreds of services provided on behalf of government ministries, agencies, Crown corporations, various levels of government and private sector organizations. They provide toll-free access to basic Government information over the telephone to millions of callers.

Sadly, however, no contact centre has been available to capture the growing number of callers who are summarily accused, tried and convicted by the MSM and social media for making off-hand comments that are judged to be hateful, insensitive, racist, sexist, homophobic or ‘Islamophobic’ .  These callers are desperate to make immediate amends by contacting the identity group they have offended.  In such cases, timing is decisive. A tardy apology can be a career-ending mistake with devastating social repercussions.  Finding the right contact quickly can be the difference between damage control and damage out-of-control. Continue reading

CALGARY: Homicide victim identified as store owner Maqsood Ahmed

Update: Calgary homicide victim identified as store owner Maqsood Ahmed

Victim stabbed while carrying bag of money, not far from police headquarters

BY , CALGARY SUN

FIRST POSTED: | UPDATED: 

Homicide detectives are investigating the stabbing death of a store owner near police headquarters in northeast Calgary Wednesday night.

About 9:45 p.m., emergency crews were called to the 4700 block of Westwinds Dr. N.E. for a report of an assault with a weapon.

The man, whom friends have identified as Maqsood Ahmed, owner of the Calgary Produce Market, was walking with another person when the attack happened, said Det. David Fakas with Calgary police.

Ahmed was carrying a bag of money, though the reason was not immediately known and would be part of the police investigation, said Fakas.

“The older man was stabbed,” Fakas said, adding the victim was taken to hospital in life-threatening condition.

“He was talking and breathing at the scene … once he got to the hospital he succumbed to his injuries.”

RELATED: Ahmed a ‘hard’working, dedicated’ businessman, say friends

Two unknown male suspects fled in a dark vehicle, said Fakas.

It’s believed they may have taken the weapon with them as investigators were not able to locate it at the scene.

“Homicide (unit) is activated and engaged, they’ll be heading the investigation,” said Fakas.

“We’re in the process of checking CCTV footage in the area.”

It was too early to say whether the incident was targeted or random, he said.

jenna.mcmurray@sunmedia.ca

On Twitter: @SunJMac

Former diplomat Scott Gilmore wants more immigrants into Canada

Why it’s time for Canada to grow up

The Canadian model works, so let’s boost immigration and triple our population

Scott Gilmore

Stan Behal/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency

Stan Behal/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency

According to newly released data, Canada’s population growth is slow and getting slower. This is bad news. Great nations are not made from fewer workers, fewer youth and more retirees. If Canada wants to thrive, if we want to influence the world, we will have to change this. We need immigrants and we need lots of them.

Canada is doing well. As we approach our 150th birthday, we are rated among the world’s most peaceful, prosperous and admired nations. The Canadian experiment is, objectively, a success.

(…)

The Canadian model works, but we are simply too small to ensure that this will continue to be the case 50 or 100 years from now. It is time we began to scale it up.

While Canada is ranked second in the world by reputation, we are 37th by population. Statistics Canada’s newly released report “Population Projections for Canada” shows our growth is now stunted. Our birth rate continues to fall and the 258,000 immigrants we accepted last year are not enough to meet our labour shortages or significantly expand our size. Unhappily, as our growth slows, our aging accelerates. The number of retired Canadians is now predicted to increase from 15 per cent to 25 per cent over the next 15 years. Simultaneously, our working-age population will shrink from 69 per cent to 60 per cent—fewer hands feeding more mouths.

Doug Saunders of the Globe and Mail has, in the past, convincingly argued that Canada should embrace prime minister Wilfrid Laurier’s dream of a significantly larger and more muscular nation. Saunders proposes we set a target of 100 million by the end of the century. Put more simply, let’s triple the size of Canada.

It would not be hard. Now at 34 million people, we would only need an annual growth rate of 1.3 per cent to reach that target. Assuming our fertility rates remain low, this means an additional 186,000 migrants annually, bringing our total immigration numbers to 444,000 per year. This may sound like a lot, but we could absorb them easily. By comparison to most cities around the world, Canadian urban areas are sprawling and empty. Even if we doubled our immigration numbers, the lineup at Tim Hortons would stay the same. It would only increase our workforce by one per cent per year, a number that our economy could easily engage, especially if we continue to recruit and favour skilled and educated migrants.

More immigrants mean more minds, more hands and more tax dollars. There is a misconception that new arrivals are a net drain on our economy. In fact, they are more entrepreneurial and work longer hours than average Canadians. The added muscle would make us smarter, stronger and louder.

As of this month, Ontario university enrolment has begun to decline due to our changing demographics. An influx of immigrants would turn this around and help grow our campuses into academic centres that matter globally. 

(…) Continue reading

ETOBICOKE: Zaid Yousif killed in targeted shooting, police said

Victim’s mother says he went to watch fight, ended up being shot and killed

CBC News Posted: Oct 07, 2014 2:37 PM ET Last Updated: Oct 07, 2014 7:02 PM ET

Things were looking good for Zaid Yousif.

He had just turned 17 last Friday and been given a BMW to drive. That followed a recent trip to Europe to visit family.

Yousif was in his last year of high school and holding down a part-time job at Canadian Tire, saving up money for the future.

“Zaid was on the road to success,” his friend Munir Andreyos said in an interview with CBC News on Tuesday.

But days after his birthday, Yousif, a student at Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School, was dead. The teenager was one of two high-school students shot dead in northwest Toronto in a shocking double homicide on Monday.

Ziad YousifZaid Yousif, 17, was shot dead in northwest Toronto on Monday afternoon. (Yousif family)

Toronto police said the shooting that killed Yousif and a student from James Cardinal McGuigan Catholic High School was targeted.

But Yousif’s mother, Jina Samouie, told CBC News on Tuesday that police had told her Yousif had gone to watch a fight and attempted to flee when guns came out.

“They said in the newspaper … they killed him, like, not by accident, but this is not right,” she said.

Andreyos said that Yousif wasn’t someone who went looking for a fight.

“He wasn’t a bully, he was nothing like that,” he said. Continue reading

ETOBICOKE: Zaid Yousif and Michael Menjivar killed in fatal shooting

Zaid Yousif, 17, and Michael Menjivar, 15, shot and killed

CBC News Posted: Oct 07, 2014 8:06 AM ET Last Updated: Oct 07, 2014 4:08 PM ET

The two young males who died in a shooting near a school in northwest Toronto yesterday afternoon were high school students, a school board official confirmed today.

Friends and family have identified the slain Don Bosco Catholic Secondary School student as Zaid Yousif, 17. Friends of the second victim identified him as Michael Menjivar, 15, a student at James Cardinal McGuigan Catholic High School.

The shooting Monday happened behind an apartment building near two schools, in the area of Dixon Road and Islington Avenue, just after 12:30 p.m. ET. Both schools were put into either lockdown, or hold and secure mode. Continue reading

WINDSOR, ON.: Kornelia Kurti allegedly used identity of deceased 4 year old girl, Rozalia Kovacs

October 6th, 2014

http://windsorite.ca/2014/10/woman-allegedly-used-identity-of-dead-4-year-old-girl/

Windsor Police have arrested a local woman who allegedly had two separate driver’s licences, one of which was allegedly in the name of a deceased girl 4-year-old.

Police say investigators, along with the Ministry of Transportation, looked into the history of the two names and learned that the woman had a licence in her own name as well as allegedly adopting the identity of a deceased 4 year old girl, Rozalia Kovacs.

The woman had allegedly been using the identity of the deceased girl since 1997.

Kornelia Kurti, 41, is facing numerous charges.

WINDSOR/BRAMPTON: Kevin Nyandu and Shadrack Amankwa charged in shooting of security guard at Boom Boom Room

Brampton pair arrested after security guard shot at nightclub

 Brampton Guardian

WINDSOR — Two Brampton men have been arrested and charged in a shooting of a security guard at a downtown Windsor nightclub Sunday.

Windsor police say two suspects were spotted running away from the downtown area following the 2:40 a.m. shooting that left the 20-year-old male security guard recovering in hospital.

Two men were arrested and a handgun and small amount of marijuana were seized, according to police.

Kevin Nyandu, 20, of Brampton has been charged with attempted murder, careless use of a firearm and drug possession.

Shadrack Amankwa, 24, of Brampton is charged with being an accessory to attempted murder, prohibited possession of a firearm and carless use of a firearm.

The shooting happened at The Boom Boom Room on Ouellete Avenue in Windsor.

The victim underwent surgery and was reported in serious but stable condition in hospital.

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