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Canada Evening Update: Ottawa rejects nearly every Tory amendment to Bill C-69; federal advisory council recommends universal pharmacare

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Ottawa is rejecting nearly every Tory amendment to its contentious resource development bill

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The federal government is pressing onward with Bill C-69, rejecting almost all of the amendments that Conservative senators made. The proposed legislation would transform the review process for major resource projects. Opponents to the polarizing bill insist that it would preclude a new pipeline from ever being built. (for subscribers)

The Conservative amendments would have limited public participation in hearings and eliminated a requirement that panels must consider climate change and Indigenous rights when reviewing major resource projects, among other things.

Six Conservative premiers have warned the government in a letter that the bill will undermine Canada’s resource economy and inflame regional tensions. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s response: “That is not the way to hold this country together.”

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The new federal pharmacare report backs a single-payer plan to mend Canada’s patchwork system

A federal advisory council has recommended that Canada adopt a universal, single-payer public pharmacare program, with the goal of lowering drug prices and creating equitable access to medication across the country. To accomplish this, the report suggests the formation of a new national drug agency – which the Liberals already endorsed within this year’s budget – that would create the list of medications to be included in the first phase of the program, proposed for release in 2022.

The council predicts that while the overhaul could cost governments an additional $15.3-billion annually before the plan is implemented in 2027, in the long term it would reduce Canada’s overall per-capita spending on prescription drugs.

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The proposed changes would deliver a significant blow to the country’s private-insurance and pharmaceutical industries, The Globe’s Kelly Grant reports. But to actually be implemented, the shifts would need to be approved by a re-elected Liberal party, who would still need to convince provincial and territorial governments to join a national pharmacare program.

Hong Kong legislators have postponed the debate on a Chinese extradition bill as protests turn violent

Lawmakers have postponed the second reading of a controversial extradition bill that would allow China to seize alleged criminals from Hong Kong more easily. But massive crowds of people continued to protest even after that announcement today, calling for the bill to be abandoned altogether.

In response, riot police forcibly cleared protesters from the streets around Hong Kong’s Legislative Council. Using tear gas, pepper paint balls, water cannons and beanbag bullets, the authorities succeeded in pushing the crowd back with tactics that demonstrators called heavy-handed and excessive.

“Canada remains concerned about the potential effect these proposals may have on the large number of Canadian citizens in Hong Kong, on business confidence, and on Hong Kong’s international reputation," said Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland in a statement. “We urge the Hong Kong government to listen to its people and its many friends around the world."

In need of some background to the extradition battle? We put together a visual guide to today’s violent protests and how they began. (for subscribers)

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Vance agrees to testify in probe: Chief of the Defence Staff General Jonathan Vance has agreed to appear before the Senate committee looking into the circumstances that led to the investigation and prosecution of Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, a senior naval officer. The committee is still waiting for Norman to reply to their request to speak with him. (for subscribers)

Canada warns Michigan on Enbridge pipeline shutdown: Canadian Natural Resources Minister Amarjeet Sohi is cautioning Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer that the threatened closure of an Enbridge crude oil pipeline would hurt both industry and consumers. Sohi says Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario would also face “severe economic consequences.” (for subscribers)

Rogers introduces unlimited wireless data plans: Rogers has become the first of the “big three” Canadian national carriers to introduce unlimited data plans with no overage charges. The company says these new plans will become available starting Thursday. (for subscribers)

TSN soccer analyst gets death threats: Kaylyn Kyle says she has received death threats after calling the U.S. women’s soccer team “disgraceful” for celebrating every goal of their 13-0 victory over 34th-ranked Thailand during the Women’s World Cup.

Stanley Cup face-off coming up tonight: The Boston Bruins and St. Louis Blues will face off one last time this evening for the Stanley Cup in a series that has gone all the way to Game 7. Check back at later tonight for the score and highlights.

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Amnesty International warns of continuing war crimes in Sudan: Sudanese security forces have continued to commit “war crimes and other serious human rights violations” such as unlawful killings and sexual violence in the Darfur region, the organization said. The African country has been rocked by political turmoil following the military’s ouster of autocrat Omar al-Bashir in April.


Canada’s main stock index fell today as energy stocks dropped with crude prices. The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX Composite index fell 21.52 points to 16,227.24.

On Wall Street, oil futures sank 4 per cent amid higher U.S. crude inventories and a bleaker demand outlook, while uncertainty over the U.S.-China trade war and U.S. economic data weighed on stocks.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 43.68 points to 26,004.83, the S&P 500 lost 5.88 points to end at 2,879.84 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 29.85 points to 7,792.72

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For some First Nations, pipelines can be a lifeline

Ironically, the opportunities created for many First Nations by pipeline proposals are being blocked by a smaller number of more fortunately situated First Nations.” – Tom Flanagan, the University of Calgary

Why you should not let your kids stay up to watch the Raptors in Game 6

“If you’re a Raptors fan and a parent, you have one job tomorrow: Get your kids’ butts in bed at the regular time. We already messed up Game 5. Don’t jinx Game 6.” – Kevin Siu


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How do I get the most flavour from my grill?

The key to a good grilled meat is the added flavour: whether it’s from a marinade, baste, rub, sauce, butter or condiment, the options for both store-bought and home-made additions are endless. (for subscribers)

Sometimes all you need on a high-quality meat is a dusting of sea salt or freshly ground black pepper, but for lesser-quality purchases, for example, a marinade can really tenderize or enhance the taste. Longer marinating should always be done in the fridge – but bring refrigerated meat to room temperature before cooking.

If you’re looking for something to brush on closer to the end of cook time, a homemade barbecue sauce might be the answer. Globe food columnist Lucy Waverman provides her tried-and-true recipe: 1 cup ketchup, ½ cup rice vinegar, 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce, 1 tsp hot-pepper sauce, lots of freshly ground black pepper, and chopped herbs, if desired.


Cornered: Canadian schools reach a turning point in use of seclusion rooms for children with disabilities

Parents and advocates across the country are calling for an adjustment in the way that schools accommodate children with disabilities. Models such as seclusion or time-out rooms – separate spaces used in many schools across the country to temporarily isolate children who are disruptive or show potentially dangerous behaviour – are outdated and even inhumane, inclusion activists argue. They say that an absence of data as to how often and for how long children are being put into these rooms fosters low accountability and ultimately misuse, such as children being routinely put in these rooms without their parents being informed.

Michelle Boshard had to pull her 11-year-old son out of school three years ago after administrators insisted that he would only be allowed to return if he wore a headpiece and was kept in an isolated room with constant supervision and no recess time. Aaron, who has been diagnosed with autism and a speech disorder, is now being schooled at home after the incident left both mother and son “emotionally devastated,” Michelle told Globe reporter Caroline Alphonso.

Many other parents spoke to the emotional and physical trauma their children have suffered at school because of restraint and seclusion.

(Melissa Renwick/The Globe and Mail)

Melissa Renwick/The Globe and Mail

Evening Update is written by Samantha McCabe. 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.

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