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Defence Watch / Former MP Paul Dewar being treated for brain cancer
« Last post by One Veteran One Standard on February 18, 2018, 08:16:02 AM »
Former MP Paul Dewar being treated for brain cancer

"While this cancer is devastating news, I am going to pursue the next phase of my treatment with determination, passion and an appreciation for life."

Former Ottawa Centre MP Paul Dewar is being treated for brain cancer, he revealed Saturday morning.


The first symptom he felt was numbness in his arm, he wrote in a public Facebook post, which he put down to tiredness from a 36-kilometre skate on the Rideau Canal on Jan. 26. But instead of getting better, the numbness persisted.


“On Monday February 5, I went to the Ottawa Civic Hospital to have my arm examined. X-rays, and then a CT scan, revealed a cyst on the right side of (my) brain,” Dewar wrote. “A follow up MRI revealed it was a tumour.”


On Wednesday, surgeons removed it.


“While this cancer is devastating news, I am going to pursue the next phase of my treatment with determination, passion and an appreciation for life,” Dewar said.


His post didn’t specify what form of cancer he has. Brain tumours come in many forms — different sorts of cancerous cells, in different parts of the brain, growing at different rates — with a wide range of prognoses. That the tumour could be removed surgically is a good sign but not as important as the type of cancer. Five-year survival rates range from five per cent to more than 85 per cent.


“Everyone of us knows someone who has had cancer and each journey is personal. People ask what they can do. If you can, please consider getting involved in something that will help your neighbourhood. Look for the beauty that exists all around us and share it with each other,” Dewar wrote.


Dewar did write that he looks forward to getting “back to my usual level of physical and community activity” over a few months.


Aged 55, Dewar is a distance runner, cyclist and skater. Since his surgery, he’s been tweeting busily about the Olympics.





Dewar was the New Democratic Party MP for Ottawa Centre for nine years, until he lost his seat to Liberal Catherine McKenna in the 2015 election. A former teacher and union leader, he’s also the son of Ottawa’s late former mayor Marion Dewar.


Since he left federal politics, he’s joined the board of Human Rights Watch and consulted abroad on democratic reforms. He’s also been touted as a possible left-wing challenger to Jim Watson for the mayor’s office this year, and in January he said he was actively thinking about running.


Watson, among many others, wished Dewar a speedy recovery.





Dewar’s diagnosis was also the talk of the federal NDP’s convention in Ottawa, where MPs Charlie Angus and Hélène Laverdière announced the news and delegates stood to show their support with applause.





With supportive family and friends, Dewar wrote, “I am perched by the side of a strong flowing river of love that gives me the courage and inspiration to take on this challenge.”


dreevely@postmedia.com

twitter.com/davidreevely


Source: Former MP Paul Dewar being treated for brain cancer
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FOCUS GROUP - Quebec City, Winnipeg, Halifax
Groupes de Discussions - Quebec City, Winnipeg, Halifax

(le franais suit l'anglais)
Dear Stakeholder,
Veterans Affairs Canada is developing new print and online materials to help keep Veterans and their families informed about the Departments new services and benefits.  As these products are being developed, VAC would like to ask for your assistance in engaging members of your organization to share their opinions at upcoming focus groups, to be held in Halifax, Winnipeg and Quebec City, beginning in late-February.
These focus groups will include up to 10 participants, mainly Canadian Veterans, but also some family members (spouses, children over 18) and caregivers, if possible.  Participation in the focus groups is confidential and no personal details will be retained or shared.
Lger research firm is hosting the focus groups on behalf of VAC. Each session will be up to two hours. The locations being used for the sessions are accessible and free parking is available. 
The results of these focus groups will become part of a public opinion research report. Veterans Affairs Canada is required to post the report to the Library and Archives Canada website within six months following the end of the focus group sessions.
I would be most grateful if you would share this opportunity with your membership in these cities.
Interested participants should contact Lger:  Sylvie Dupuis, Director Qualitative Research, Email: sdupuis@leger360.com,  Telephone:
514-982-2464 (ext. 105)  with any queries they may have or to find out more information or express interest in participating.
-----
Madame, Monsieur,
Anciens Combattants Canada travaille llaboration de documents imprims et en ligne pour tenir les vtrans et leur famille au courant des nouveaux services et avantages offerts par le Ministre. Pendant que lon procde la mise au point de ces produits, nous vous demandons votre aide afin que vous mobilisiez les membres de votre organisation pour quils expriment leur opinion lors des prochains groupes de discussions qui auront lieu Halifax, Winnipeg et Qubec compter de la mi-fvrier.
Ces groupes de discussion compteront un maximum de dix participants, principalement des vtrans canadiens, mais galement certains proches (conjoints, enfants de plus de 18 ans) et des aidants, dans la mesure du possible. La participation aux groupes de discussion est confidentielle et aucun renseignement personnel ne sera conserv ou partag.
La firme de recherche Lger tiendra les groupes de discussion au nom dACC. Chaque sance durera environ deux heures. Les lieux utiliss pour les sances sont accessibles et il y du stationnement gratuit. 
Les rsultats de ces groupes de discussions seront intgrs un rapport de recherche sur lopinion publique. Anciens Combattants Canada doit afficher le rapport sur le site Web de Bibliothque et Archives Canada dans les six mois suivant la fin des sances des groupes de discussion.
Je vous saurais gr de communiquer cette occasion vos membres qui rsident dans ces villes.
Les personnes qui aimeraient participer doivent communiquer avec Lger:
Sylvie Dupuis, directrice de la recherche qualitative, par courriel  sdupuis@leger360.com ou par tlphone au 514-982-2464 (poste 105) pour toute question, pour en savoir davantage ou pour manifester leur intrt.
3
Adam: There's no excuse for lack of transparency on Ottawa's LRT plan

The light rail construction delay saga roiling the city is a classic example of how things can go wrong when government cloaks itself in secrecy and becomes less accountable. After a storm of criticism over how the city allowed the Rideau Transit Group (RTG) to escape payment of a $1-million penalty for missing its original […]

The light rail construction delay saga roiling the city is a classic example of how things can go wrong when government cloaks itself in secrecy and becomes less accountable.


After a storm of criticism over how the city allowed the Rideau Transit Group (RTG) to escape payment of a $1-million penalty for missing its original May 24 handover date of the $2.1-billion LRT project, the city manager sent a memo to councillors Wednesday detailing how the contract protects taxpayers from cost overruns.


Now we learn that it could cost $50 million in overruns associated with the delay. The problem is that while these are apparently costs to RTG itself ($8 million to $10 million a month), and the city says it has the power to withhold its own payments to the private firm to get its way on the file, no one knows for sure what will happen. That’s because there is apparently no detailed language in the contract about what municipal costs stemming from the delay the consortium would pay; RTG could reject the city’s demands. The matter could end up in arbitration or court, where no one can predict the outcome.


The city’s memo is, therefore, disingenuous and offers too little, too late. In a city that values transparency and accountability, all the information would have been made public months ago to allow for informed discussion and debate. Its release now is an exercise in damage control, and even then, it falls short.


The matter could end up in arbitration or court, where no one can predict the outcome.


Remember, controversy erupted after the RTG said completion of the LRT project would be delayed for about six months. For months, city brass had told residents that if the consortium failed to complete the LRT project as agreed, it would pay a $1 million penalty. The same message was delivered to councillors in closed-door briefings, but this was not exactly true. What officials failed to reveal is that a clause in the contract allows RTG to escape the penalty if it informs the city six months before the handover that it won’t make the deadline. That’s why, contrary to everything the city said, RTG is paying nothing for missing the deadline. Worse still, city brass, and certainly the mayor, knew of the construction delay and its potential impact on city finances, but kept quiet during budget deliberations in December. 


What happened here is that city officials decided to not give the public, and indeed councillors, all the information they needed to know about the project’s finances, until it became practically impossible to not do so. They withheld information, misled councillors. The whiff of deception surrounding this case is troubling. The big questions are: How can staff decide to hide information from councillors? And how can our elected representatives perform their duty to protect the public interest if they are denied relevant information? How could this happen, and who is going to be held accountable?


It is worth noting that the LRT project was overseen by the finance and economic development committee – not the transit commission or transportation committee. Given the committee’s responsibility for the city’s finances, it was the right decision. But one has to question the kind of leadership and oversight this committee, chaired by the mayor, has provided.


The reason things like this happen is the culture of secrecy that permeates city government. Information that should be readily available to the public to ensure good governance is kept under wraps, just for the sake of secrecy. And in the era of the dominant mayor, councillors have simply become yes-men and women, easy to sideline or ignore.


The way the finance and economic development committee handled this project shows it cannot be left to its own devices. Council must find its voice and assert its collective authority. We expect more from councillors than having them complain about being left out of the loop on such a key issue. Everything we know now suggests staff misled council and the public. They should be held accountable.   


Mohammed Adam is an Ottawa writer. 






Source: Adam: There's no excuse for lack of transparency on Ottawa's LRT plan
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Focus Afghanistan / Kronos Quartet with Wu Man, and Sirojiddin Juraev
« Last post by One Veteran One Standard on February 15, 2018, 06:14:19 AM »
Kronos Quartet with Wu Man, and Sirojiddin Juraev

The legendary string quartet present an adventurous concert of new works never before heard in the Middle East, featuring the acclaimed Chinese pipa virtuoso Wu Man, and Tajikistan’s Sirojiddin Juraev, a master of Central Asian long-neck lutes, on dutar.



Source: Kronos Quartet with Wu Man, and Sirojiddin Juraev
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Focus Afghanistan / Qyrq Qyz (Forty Girls)
« Last post by One Veteran One Standard on February 14, 2018, 06:00:20 PM »
Qyrq Qyz (Forty Girls)

86 minutes, live music performance, accompanied by film


Directed by Saodat Ismailova
Music composed and arranged by Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky
Scenography by Kamilla Kurmanbekova
Costumes by Hilola Sher
Lighting design and movement by Séverine Rième
Sound and Technical Direction by Joseph Jabbour


Source: Qyrq Qyz (Forty Girls)
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Focus Afghanistan / Qyrq Qyz (Fourty Girls)
« Last post by One Veteran One Standard on February 14, 2018, 06:03:33 AM »
Qyrq Qyz (Fourty Girls)

86 minutes, live music performance, accompanied by film


Directed by Saodat Ismailova
Music composed and arranged by Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky
Scenography by Kamilla Kurmanbekova
Costumes by Hilola Sher
Lighting design and movement by Séverine Rième
Sound and Technical Direction by Joseph Jabbour


Source: Qyrq Qyz (Fourty Girls)
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Police warn of phone scam that has fleeced people of millions of dollars

The Ontario Provincial Police are warning the public of a phone scam that has already defrauded five people in Toronto of millions of dollars. Police say the scheme involves a call to a home phone from someone posing as a retailer claiming to alert the victim that their credit card account has been compromised. The […]

The Ontario Provincial Police are warning the public of a phone scam that has already defrauded five people in Toronto of millions of dollars.


Police say the scheme involves a call to a home phone from someone posing as a retailer claiming to alert the victim that their credit card account has been compromised. The victim is then told to call 911 and  their financial institution to report the fraud. However, when they hang up, the victim does not know that the call has not been disconnected.


Police said the victims believe they are making an outgoing call and speaking to authorities, but the original call was never disconnected. The fraudster then tells the victim to go to their banking institution to transfer funds into a different account, which is supposedly intended to safeguard their funds.


Police say it is never a good idea to reveal personal financial details or information over the phone. Don’t believe callers who say they are from your bank or credit card company and if you have a concern, go to your bank personally.


Banks would never advise you to transfer funds to another outside account to protect your funds.


Anyone with more information about this fraud are used to call OPP at 1-888-310-1122.


 


Source: Police warn of phone scam that has fleeced people of millions of dollars
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Focus Afghanistan / Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky
« Last post by One Veteran One Standard on February 13, 2018, 06:02:52 PM »
Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky


Source: Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky
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Focus Afghanistan / Saodat Ismailova
« Last post by One Veteran One Standard on February 13, 2018, 06:01:00 AM »
Saodat Ismailova


Source: Saodat Ismailova
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Focus Afghanistan / Alibek Kabdurakhmanov
« Last post by One Veteran One Standard on February 12, 2018, 06:03:17 PM »
Alibek Kabdurakhmanov


Source: Alibek Kabdurakhmanov
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