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

Ontario postpones March break to help curb spread; more vaccines are heading to Canada

Ontario is postponing March break until the week of April 12 in an effort to reduce COVID-19 spread as students return to in-person classes. Education Minister Stephen Lecce said the decision was based on the advice of the province’s Chief Medical Officer. The province’s largest teachers’ union, the association representing public school boards and the Opposition New Democrats had all asked for it to go ahead as planned, saying families, students and teachers needed it.

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Nationally, a month-long slowdown in COVID-19 vaccine deliveries should end next week, with Pfizer confirming it will ship 400,000 doses starting Monday, its single biggest shipment to Canada to date. Over the next four weeks, Canada should get almost 1.8 million doses from Pfizer, and another 168,000 from Moderna.

Meanwhile, the Manitoba government is preparing to buy two million doses of a prospective Canadian-made COVID-19 vaccine without going through the federal government. Premier Brian Pallister says the deal with Providence Therapeutics is necessary because Ottawa has faced problems in getting steady supplies of the existing international Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.

Opinion:

  • The “me-first” spirit of vaccine nationalism isn’t just selfish. It’s self-harm - Doug Saunders
  • What if we just cancelled Canada’s pandemic debt? - Konrad Yakabuski

Read more:

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Bombardier cutting 1,600 jobs, ending production of Learjet

Bombardier is stopping production of its Learjet luxury aircraft later this year and slashing another 1,600 jobs as the Canadian manufacturer tries to stabilize its business amid the global pandemic crisis.

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The moves are part of an effort to shave US$400-million in annual costs by 2023 and come in addition to a plan announced in June to cut 2,500 jobs, the company said in its fourth-quarter earnings release today.

About 700 workers in Quebec and 100 in Ontario are among those who will lose their jobs with the new round of cuts, a Bombardier spokesman confirmed.

Related: Farewell to the Learjet, known for decades as the limousine of the skies for the ultra-rich

U.S. Capitol rioters believed they were acting on Trump’s ‘orders,’ Democrats tell impeachment trial

House Democrats prosecuting Donald Trump’s impeachment today said the Capitol invaders believed they were acting on “the president’s orders” and reflected his violent rhetoric when they set out to storm the building and stop the joint session of Congress that was certifying Democrat Joe Biden’s election.

The prosecutors described in stark, personal terms the horror they faced that day and showed the many public and explicit instructions Trump gave his supporters – both in the weeks before the Jan. 6 attack and at his midday rally that unleashed the mob on the Capitol. Rioters in videos, some posted to social media by themselves, talked about how they were doing it all for Trump.

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Trump’s lawyers will launch their defence tomorrow, and the trial could wrap by weekend.

Inter Pipeline’s takeover by Brookfield Infrastructure or rival bidder a likely outcome

Inter Pipeline will have to play stellar defense if it hopes to remain a standalone company, because analysts are calling Brookfield Infrastructure Partners’ hostile takeover offer fairly valued, and arguing the target has little to show that its current turnaround plan is working.

Inter Pipeline’s “status quo is not an option,” RBC Dominion Securities analysts wrote in a note to clients after Brookfield announced its $5.7-billion takeover bid for the 80 per cent of the company that it does not already own.

IN OTHER NEWS

SIU confirms officer’s bullet killed baby: Two and a half months after a one-year-old baby was shot and killed during a police standoff in a rural Ontario community, the province’s police watchdog has confirmed that an officer did fire the fatal shot.

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B.C. sees record deaths: British Columbia’s chief coroner says the province recorded the most deaths in a single year due to an unnatural cause, with 1,716 lives lost to illicit drug overdoses in 2020.

Voting delayed in parts of Newfoundland: Amid climbing COVID-19 case numbers, Newfoundland and Labrador election officials have postponed voting in Saturday’s provincial election for nearly half the province’s ridings.

Raptors not returning to Toronto this season: Challenges related to the coronavirus pandemic and how that affects crossing the border between the U.S. and Canada will keep the Raptors in their adopted Tampa home for the remainder of the regular season, the NBA team says.

Taylor Swift Fearless once more: Taylor Swift has announced the recorded version of her sophomore album, Fearless: Taylor’s Version, is finished and “will be with you soon.” Swift has vowed to re-record her first six albums in a long-running dispute with music manager Scooter Braun.

Gina Carano fired from The Mandalorian: Lucasfilm says it had ditched Gina Carano, a lead actor in its TV series The Mandalorian, over social media posts “denigrating people based on their cultural and religious identities,” calling them “are abhorrent and unacceptable.”

MARKET WATCH

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Wall Street stocks closed mixed today, with the Nasdaq eking out a modest gain as investors bet on more fiscal stimulus. But U.S. President Joe Biden said China was poised to “eat our lunch,” a warning that tempered investor enthusiasm for a market near record highs. Canada main index slid with losses in the health-care sector as investors took profits in cannabis shares.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 7.10 points or 0.02 per cent to 31,430.70, the S&P 500 gained 6.50 points or 0.17 per cent to 3,916.38 and the Nasdaq Composite added 53.24 points or 0.38 per cent to end at 14,025.77. The S&P/TSX composite index fell 64.79 points or 0.35 per cent to 18,392.99.

Got a news tip that you’d like us to look into? E-mail us at tips@globeandmail.com. Need to share documents securely? Reach out via SecureDrop.

LIVING BETTER

It’s RRSP season amid very frothy stock markets - where should an investor turn? Check out Rob Carrick’s 2021 ETF Buyer’s Guide: Best Canadian equity funds. The guide is designed to help long-term investors find core investments for their portfolios. You want Canadian stocks in your account, right? The guide offers 11 different candidates you can research on Globeinvestor.com to see whether they meet your needs.

TODAY’S LONG READ

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COVID-19 pandemic exacerbating issues at core of Moose Hide Campaign to end violence against women, children

Moose Hide Campaign co-founders Paul Lacerte and his daughter Raven Lacerte in Victoria on Feb. 10, 2021.

CHAD HIPOLITO/The Canadian Press

A lot has changed since Raven Lacerte and her father Paul Lacerte hatched a plan while moose hunting to help quell a tide of violence that they’d witnessed in their community.

The Moose Hide Campaign to end violence against women and children has grown from a grassroots movement to reaching millions of people in more than 2,000 communities across Canada. But with the pandemic creating more isolation, the Lacertes say the problem they are trying to address remains, making the campaign just as relevant on its 10th anniversary. Read the full story here.

Related: “As we harvested our moose, we had an idea – to use the hide of the moose, which is so important to our culture, as an emblem for a campaign to encourage men and boys to join the effort to end violence against women and children. Wearing the pin would symbolize one’s commitment to honour, respect and protect the women and children in their life and to speak out against gender-based and domestic violence.” - Raven Lacerte

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