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Good evening, let’s start with today’s top stories:

David Lametti tables legislation to reform bail system

The Liberals’ new bail-reform legislation includes new measures that would make it more difficult for some repeat violent offenders to get released on bail.

Justice Minister David Lametti introduced the bill this morning, after months of calls for tougher laws from premiers, police and victims’ rights groups.

The legislation introduces reverse-onus bail conditions for people charged with serious violent offences involving a weapon, in cases where the person was convicted of a similar violent offence within the past five years.

It will also add some firearms offences to existing reverse-onus provisions, and expand the provision of that measure in cases where the alleged crimes involve intimate partner violence.

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Inflation ticks higher in April, testing Bank of Canada rate pause

Canada’s annual inflation rate rose 4.4 per cent in April as a variety of costs – including gasoline, rents and mortgage interest – contributed to the first acceleration since last summer.

Financial analysts were expecting an increase in the consumer price index of 4.1 per cent. Prior to this report, the annual inflation rate had been gradually declining since hitting a peak of 8.1 per cent last June.

The CPI numbers, combined with a tight labour market, will test the Bank of Canada and whether it thinks interest rates are sufficiently high enough to restrain inflation.

Read more: Cooling inflation “might have been a false dawn”: How economists and interest rate speculators are reacting to surprisingly hot CPI data

WestJet pilots issue Friday strike notice as thousands plan for long-weekend travel

A labour dispute at WestJet Airlines could disrupt travel plans for thousands of travellers on the long weekend.

WestJet’s pilots’ union said late last night that 1,850 pilots could stop flying early Friday morning, as the Air Line Pilots Association negotiators push for a new collective agreement. The Calgary-based airline responded with a notice that it plans to lock out the employees on the same day.

Both sides say they will continue to negotiate ahead of the deadline.

In the event of a work stoppage, WestJet said it’s preparing to operate a reduced schedule and provide “flexible” flight change and cancellation arrangements

Ukraine says it shot down Russian hypersonic missiles

Ukraine says it shot down six Russian hypersonic Kinzhal ballistic missiles, thwarting a superweapon Moscow had previously touted as all but unstoppable.

It was the first time Ukraine had claimed to have struck an entire volley of multiple hypersonic missiles, and if confirmed would be a dramatic demonstration of the effectiveness of newly deployed Western air defences.

The six Kinzhals were among a volley of 18 missiles Russia launched at Ukraine overnight. The commander-in-chief of Ukraine’s armed forces said all had been successfully intercepted. Russia dismissed the claim.

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky have agreed to separate meetings with a delegation of leaders from six African countries to discuss a possible plan to end the war in Ukraine, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa says.

Read more:

Open this photo in gallery:

Actor and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Orlando Bloom holds Patron, a Jack Russell terrier who works as a service dog with the State Emergency Service of Ukraine, in Kyiv on March 25, 2023. Within two months of the start of the Russian invasion, Patron found more than 200 explosive devices.UNICEF/Skyba/Reuters


Western wildfires update: Hot and dry conditions are expected to continue as wildfires throughout Western Canada have forced thousands from their homes and affected air quality as far east as Manitoba. Some oil and gas companies in Alberta are once again shutting in production.

Debt ceiling talks: U.S. President Joe Biden is curtailing his coming foreign trip because of the looming debt ceiling crisis, adding urgency to talks today with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and other congressional leaders at the White House.

B.C. sending cancer patients U.S.: Starting May 29, British Columbia will send cancer patients to Washington State for radiation therapy in response to growing wait times and a backlog at home. The initiative will first focus on those with breast and prostate cancer as they are the largest group receiving radiation therapy and they have waited the longest, Health Minister Adrian Dix says.

Child-care scarcity: Nearly half of Canadian children younger than kindergarten age live in child-care deserts, areas of the country where there is a serious shortage of available licensed child care, according to a new report.


Canada’s main stock index fell today by the most in two months after a hotter-than-expected inflation reading had traders wondering whether the country’s central bank is done with hiking interest rates this year. U.S. stock indexes also closed lower after a disappointing forecast from Home Depot and U.S. retail sales data for April pointed to softer consumer spending.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index dropped 297.90 points or 1.45 per cent to 20,242.07. The loonie traded at 74.20 U.S. cents.

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 336.46 points or 1.01 per cent to 33,012.14, the S&P 500 lost 26.38 points or 0.64 per cent to end at 4,109.9, and the Nasdaq Composite dipped 22.16 points or 0.18 per cent to 12,343.05.

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The conservative weakness for contrarianism has driven a lot of them crazy. Exhibit A: Danielle Smith

“It’s this detachment from reality that sets today’s conservatives apart. The left has its share of fanatics, but they do not give the same impression of having suffered a complete psychotic break; they are doctrinaire, not deranged.” - Andrew Coyne

America’s terrifying descent into everyday gun violence

“Mass shootings have now become so common that someone like me, who regularly visits the U.S., begins to think: How safe is it there? ... You still can’t help thinking there’s a chance you could walk out of a Walgreens one day and be met by flying bullets.” Gary Mason


The path to success hasn’t always been easy for Jenn Harper, founder and CEO of Cheekbone Beauty, Canada’s first Indigenous-owned cosmetics company. From being rejected on Dragons’ Den to being initially turned down by Sephora, she has known rejection. On the latest episode of the Better for It podcast, she talks about how Cheekbone was born out of grief, why inexperience can be an asset and the struggles Indigenous entrepreneurs face.


How a small Chinese city’s barbecue stands became an overnight sensation

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People visit a market with barbecue restaurants on May 2, 2023, during the five-day Labour Day holiday, in Zibo, China.STR/AFP/Getty Images

Fame has been both a blessing and a burden for Zibo.

Home to about 4.7 million people, the city in China’s eastern Shandong province was once best known, if it was known at all, as a manufacturing hub, close to the port of Qingdao, on the Yellow Sea. After work, many locals would grab a snack – scallion pancakes and meat skewers cooked over charcoal – at the thousands of small outdoor barbecue stands that dot Zibo.

This year, seemingly overnight, those barbecue stands became an online sensation, making Zibo one of the most famous cities in China. In March, the city received 4.8 million visitors. Hotel bookings went up 800 per cent.

But when all of China decides to go somewhere at once, there can be issues. Zibo barbecue stalls are tiny, typically only serving a handful of customers at a time, and many have been overwhelmed by the sudden demand. Read the full story by James Griffiths.

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