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Que. man denied surgery in BC, return of the Calgary Stampede: In The News for July 7

In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what's on the radar of our editors for the morning of July 7 ... What we are watching in Canada ...
British Columbia's provincial flag flies on a flag pole in Ottawa, Friday July 3, 2020. A Quebec man who fell and broke multiple bones in his face during a trip to Sun Peaks in British Columbia says his surgery was cancelled after he was told his home province would not pay for it. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

In The News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what's on the radar of our editors for the morning of July 7 ...

What we are watching in Canada ...

A Quebec man who fell and broke multiple bones in his face during a trip to Sun Peaks in British Columbia says his surgery was cancelled after he was told his home province would not pay for it.

Patrick Bélanger says his experience is a warning for residents of Quebec and all Canadians who believe universal health care means they can get care anywhere in the country.

Bélanger was taken by ambulance to Royal Inlands Hospital in Kamloops after his fall and was told he needed surgery, but a surgeon told him the hospital wouldn't let him do the operation, and he should go back to Quebec for care.

All provinces have reciprocal billing agreements allowing Canadians to be treated anywhere in the country, but Quebec doesn't have an arrangement for physician fees, only for costs related to care in hospitals.

Quebec's Health Department says doctors elsewhere who treat Quebecers can either bill the province or bill the patient, who then can get reimbursement from their government.

A different BC doctor performed the surgery on Bélanger a week later. 

Damien Contandriopoulos, a University of Victoria health policy researcher, says he's "shocked" a Quebec resident would be denied care, especially because thousands of Quebecers see doctors in Ontario border towns.


Also this ...

The rides are going up, concession stands are waiting and the Calgary Stampede is raring to go in its first return to full capacity since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 10-day celebration of cowboy life was cancelled for the first time in its 112-year history in 2020 and was followed last year by a scaled-down version.

Stampede President Steve McDonough says it's exciting to have the event back to the way it was before the pandemic.

He says people may still be cautious about going out in public so he isn't predicting any attendance records.

McDonough says he'd be happy if a million people attended -- which is about double the number from last year.

The Stampede parade, led by actor Kevin Costner, will be held tomorrow morning.

The popular event will run to July 17.


What we are watching in the U.S. ...

HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. _The trauma of the Fourth of July was already beginning to yield to life's regular rhythms Wednesday, just 48 hours after America's latest mass shooting brought tragedy and infamy to another tranquil U.S. community. 

At Central Avenue and Green Bay Road, commuter traffic — that fixture of every large American city's suburban margins, to say nothing of Chicago — returned to a junction that has been closed to vehicles, and a backdrop on live TV, for much of the last two days. 

Residents, aiming to add to the growing heap of flowers and cards across the street, suddenly found themselves dodging cars and trucks, some of which slowed long enough to gawp at the spectacle. 

Beyond the remaining barricades, the camping chairs, ice coolers, blankets and bikes that parade spectators left behind as they fled a barrage of savage gunfire were gone, spirited away by a full-size U-Haul.

Only the flowers, the yellow police tape and the lingering presence of investigators and media, the latter now relegated to one of two designated street corners, offered clues to what had transpired. 

Seven people were killed and 38 people were injured Monday when a lone gunman, perched on a roof of a sportswear store and disguised in women's clothing, opened fire on parade spectators, unleashing more than 80 rounds on the defenceless crowd.

Police say a number of the wounded remain in critical condition and warn that the death toll could still grow.

Police have charged Robert E. "Bobby" Crimo III with seven counts of first-degree murder, and expect to file additional charges, officials say. Crimo was ordered held without bail Wednesday.

Authorities say Crimo confessed to police about the shooting and described fleeing to Madison, Wisc., about two hours away, where he briefly contemplated staging a second shooting before changing his mind. 


What we are watching in the rest of the world ...

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates _ A staggering 71 million more people around the world are experiencing poverty as a result of soaring food and energy prices that climbed in the weeks following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the United Nations Development Program said in a report Thursday.

The UNDP estimates that 51.6 million more people fell into poverty in the first three months after the war, living off $1.90 a day or less. This pushed the total number globally at this threshold to nine per cent of the world's population. An additional 20 million people slipped to the poverty line of $3.20 a day.

In low-income countries, families spend 42 per cent of their household incomes on food but as Western nations moved to sanction Russia, the price fuel and staple food items like wheat, sugar and cooking oil soared. Ukraine's blocked ports and its inability to export grains to low-income countries further drove up prices, pushing tens of millions quickly into poverty.

"The cost of living impact is almost without precedent in a generation... and that is why it is so serious,'' UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner said at the launch of the report.

The speed at which this many people experienced poverty outpaced the economic pain felt at the peak of the pandemic. The UNDP noted that 125 million people experienced poverty over about 18 months during the pandemic's lockdowns and closures, compared with more than 71 million in just three months after Russia's invasion of Ukraine in late February.

Some of the countries hardest hit by inflation include Haiti, Argentina, Egypt, Iraq, Turkey, the Philippines, Rwanda, Sudan, Kenya, Sri Lanka and Uzbekistan. In countries like Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Mali, Nigeria and Yemen, the impacts of inflation are even harder for those already at the lowest poverty line.

The total number of people living in poverty, or are vulnerable to poverty, stands at over five billion, or just under 70 per cent of the world's population.

Another U.N. report released Wednesday said world hunger rose last year with 2.3 billion people facing moderate or severe difficulty obtaining enough to eat _ and that was before the war in Ukraine.


On this day in 2012 ...

Eighteen-year-old Eugenie Bouchard became Canada's first Grand Slam singles winner when she beat Ukraine's Elina Svitolina 6-2, 6-2 in the junior girls' final at Wimbledon. (Fellow Canuck Filip Peliwo captured the junior boys' title the next day.)


In entertainment ...

Senator Patricia Bovey is warning that fake Indigenous art and knock-offs from abroad are being produced en masse without the permission of First Nations artists. 

The first art historian to sit in the Senate says she wants the government to help Indigenous artists enforce copyright law to stop fake copies of their work from being made. 

Bovey says a flood of fakes and commercial knock-offs are exploiting Indigenous culture, robbing artists of revenue. 

They include copied hand-carved masks carved in Indonesia from mahogany, a wood that's not traditionally grown in Canada. 

The huge trade includes plastic bowls, bags and clothing. T-shirts and bedspreads featuring reproductions of Indigenous art works made in eastern Europe, China and other parts of Asia, without informing the artist. 

Bovey wants ministers to set up a unit to help Indigenous artists track down those who infringed their copyright, so they are able to at least get paid. 


Did you see this?

VANCOUVER _ Politics and disagreements around leadership at the annual gathering of the Assembly of First Nations are getting in the way of Indigenous topics that matter most, the group's youth council co-chair said Wednesday.

Fighting back tears, Rosalie LaBillois told delegates the youth council has been left to fend for itself on issues like child welfare as executives and National Chief RoseAnne Archibald dominate the discussion about her suspension.

"Every time you decide to squabble amongst yourselves, you forget the children and the young people that you once swore to protect,'' LaBillois said.

Chief Scott McLeod of the Nipissing First Nation in Ontario later approached the microphone to personally apologize to the youth council.

"I have heard you and I'm humbled by your words,'' he said.

The assembly's executives voted to suspend Archibald last month pending results of investigations into four complaints against her.

Archibald has alleged she was suspended for trying to investigate corruption within the assembly and called for a forensic audit of the organization.

Much of the first day of the gathering was spent in speeches and debate about Archibald's suspension. A vote to reaffirm her suspension was defeated.

Archibald said she wanted to be reinstated, but that emergency resolution was dragged into Wednesday and then delayed further while the chiefs review the document changes.

Delegates are expected to debate an emergency resolution Thursday that calls for Archibald to be fully reinstated and an audit into potential information leaks within the AFN.


This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 7, 2022.

The Canadian Press