Good evening, let’s start with today’s top stories:
A complaint about the conduct of Supreme Court Justice Russell Brown, who has been on leave with pay since Feb. 1, relates to an altercation at a hotel in Arizona.
Justice Brown, in a statement through his lawyers on Friday, said he was assaulted in the Jan. 28 incident outside the Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia, which hosted the award gala he was speaking at. A man named Jonathan Crump, “without warning or provocation” punched Justice Brown several times in the head, he said in the statement. “Taken by surprise, I was unable to defend myself,” Justice Brown said.
The altercation led to a complaint against him to the Canadian Judicial Council, filed on Jan. 29. Supreme Court Chief Justice Richard Wagner says he placed Justice Brown on a leave of absence the day after being informed of the complaint.
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Battle for Bakhmut is pinning down Russia’s best units, Ukraine says
Ukraine has decided to fight on in the ruined city of Bakhmut because the battle is pinning down Russia’s best units and degrading them ahead of a planned Ukrainian spring counter-offensive, an aide to President Volodymyr Zelensky said.
The comments by Mykhailo Podolyak were the latest signal of a shift by Kyiv this week to continue the defence of the small eastern city, site of the war’s bloodiest battle, as Moscow tries to secure its first major victory in more than half a year.
A large portion of Russia’s trained military personnel, remnants of its professional army and its private contractors are focusing on Bakhmut, said Podolyak in an interview with an Italian newspaper. “We, therefore, have two objectives: to reduce their capable personnel as much as possible, and to fix them in a few key wearisome battles, to disrupt their offensive and concentrate our resources elsewhere, for the spring counter-offensive. So, today Bakhmut is completely effective, even exceeding its key tasks.”
Federal budget date announced
The federal government’s 2023 budget will be tabled on March 28, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland announced Friday. That is just days after U.S. President Joe Biden visits Ottawa for a two-day meeting March 23 and 24.
A key element of the 2023 federal budget will be new details on Canada’s response to the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act, which contains billions in tax breaks and other incentives to encourage emission reduction efforts.
Freeland has said measures related to reducing emissions and health care will be two areas of focus in the 2023 budget along with a third element, which will be the need for fiscal restraint, pointing to concerns about inflation and high interest rates.
At a virtual long COVID-19 clinic, patients across Ontario access care and find support
Providence Healthcare, a rehabilitation, palliative and long-term care organization that is part of Unity Health Toronto has created a virtual outpatient program that helps connect a vast and growing number of long COVID-19 patients with strategies to assist in managing their often-debilitating symptoms. The program is getting referrals from all over the province, said Ashley Verduyn, chief and vice-president of medical affairs at Providence Healthcare.
The Globe and Mail recently observed a cohort of patients as they took part in the program, which consists of weekly online educational meetings led by members of an interdisciplinary health team. Some of the educational sessions focus on strategies to avoid overexertion that can lead to serious exhaustion and other physical setbacks.
Hundreds of thousands of Canadians are living with long COVID, a devastating diagnosis that robs some people of their ability to work, leave the house or do the most basic daily tasks.
- More on long COVID care: In the cities hardest hit, care for Canadians with long COVID is scarce
- Globe readers with long COVID: Readers share how long COVID has affected them, from work to family and social life
- Vaccinations: Why isn’t everyone being offered a COVID booster this spring?
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Ottawa warns provinces of health care funding cuts: The federal government has issued a warning to provinces and territories that it intends to reduce the funding they receive through federal health transfers if they continue to allow private companies to charge patients for medically necessary health services, including virtual care.
Analysis: Chinese President Xi Jinping secures third term as tensions with the West heat up: Li Qiang, who is expected to be named premier, China’s No. 2 post, putting him in charge of managing the world’s second-largest economy. Li, who lacks significant economic experience, faces a daunting task.
- Liberals begin public consultations on setting up a foreign influence registry
- China accuses Canada of smearing reputation over alleged secret police stations
Iran, Saudi Arabia agree to resume ties, with China’s help: Iran and Saudi Arabia agreed Friday to reestablish diplomatic relations and reopen embassies after seven years of tensions. The major diplomatic breakthrough negotiated with China lowers the chance of armed conflict between the Mideast rivals – both directly and in proxy conflicts around the region.
How Canada is affected by Silicon Valley Bank crisis: The abrupt failure Friday of Silicon Valley Bank, one of the world’s most prominent technology financiers, is expected to have a limited immediate impact on the Canadian technology sector, although the repercussions will have a negative impact over the longer term, industry experts say.
Wage growth jumps: Canadian wage growth picked up in February and surpassed 5 per cent, a potential setback for the Bank of Canada as it tries to subdue inflation and a rollicking labour market.
Oscars this weekend: In a first since 1961, the Oscars carpet will not be red. Aparita Bhandari delves into whether RRR’s Oscars spotlight this year will open Hollywood’s door for Indian filmmakers. Plus, Canadians to watch out for at this weekend’s awards show.
Wall Street’s indexes closed lower on Friday as investors ran for the exits as they stressed out about the health of U.S. banks after regulators had to close a high-profile lender to the technology sector, overshadowing the February jobs report.
The Dow Jones industrial average was down 345.22 points or 1.07 per cent at 31,909.64. The S&P 500 index was down 56.73 points, or almost 1.5 per cent, at 3,861.59, while the Nasdaq composite was down 199.46 points, or 1.8 per cent, at 11,138.89.
The S&P/TSX composite index was down 311.80 points or 1.55 per cent at 19,774.92.
The Canadian dollar traded for 72.43 cents US compared with 72.52 cents US on Thursday.
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In the U.S., the left has fallen into the populist right’s culture-war trap
“To be sure, the right-wing crackdown on academic freedom is more dangerous than the left’s literary allergies. What is interesting, however, is how much left-wing and right-wing intolerance have in common.” – Ian Buruma
My hometown of Smiths Falls is being abandoned once again
“We’ve seen similar boom and bust towns across North America that have lived and died at the hands of one large private employer but rarely does the story repeat itself in the same place.” – Jenn Jefferys
Share a Porsche or rent a wedding dress? Welcome to the age of rentable luxury
Rentable luxury, a growing niche of the sharing economy, taps into the increased desire to enjoy expensive things – without the downsides of buying or owning them. For those renting out the high-end items, it can provide an income stream, free storage space and maintenance, and for small business owners, a potential tax deduction.
TODAY’S LONG READ
Sex traffickers are using shell companies to launder illicit profits in Canada
Sex trafficking is one of the toughest crimes to investigate. But now, new groundbreaking methods are exposing criminal hot spots across Canada long hidden from view.
According to a new data analysis by Thomson Reuters Special Services, LLC, transnational criminals who reap billions of dollars in sordid profits appear to be operating at hundreds of illicit massage parlours in the country.
TRSS, a subsidiary of Thomson Reuters Corp., identified 700 such businesses as part of their Canadian case study. The company uses data and technology to help law enforcement and government agencies identify and nab criminals involved in human trafficking – a complex crime that involves the recruitment, transport and control of vulnerable individuals.
The case study’s preliminary findings indicate that criminals who exploit susceptible women and girls are also using Canadian shell corporations to wash the proceeds of their crimes.
Evening Update is written by Prajakta Dhopade. If you’d like to receive this newsletter by e-mail every weekday evening, go here to sign up. If you have any feedback, send us a note.