Good evening, let’s start with today’s top stories:
The chief executive officer of Rogers Communications Inc. is prepared to depart the telecommunications giant – along with several members of his management team – if deposed chairman Edward Rogers elects a new slate of five directors to the company board, sources have told The Globe and Mail.
Mr. Natale and the executive team he recruited since taking the top job at Rogers four years ago are said to be disappointed by turmoil that has plagued Rogers in recent weeks, following Mr. Rogers’ attempt to replace Mr. Natale with chief financial officer Tony Staffieri. The majority of Rogers directors blocked that move and Mr. Staffieri departed in late September.
This week, the Rogers board voted to remove Mr. Rogers as chair. Mr. Rogers responded by proposing a slate of five new directors to replace five independent board members, including newly elected chair John MacDonald.
Rogers intends to make the changes through a written resolution, without convening a shareholder meeting. Rogers Communications said in a statement that the company is “is not aware of this mechanism ever having been utilized in respect of a public company in Canada.”
This is the daily Evening Update newsletter. If you’re reading this on the web, or it was sent to you as a forward, you can sign up for Evening Update and more than 20 more Globe newsletters here. If you like what you see, please share it with your friends.
Son of slain Haitian president Jovenel Moïse and Canadian legal team petition to join investigation
Now living in Montreal, Joverlein Moïse is determined to get answers in the July assassination that shocked the world.
This week, he and his lawyers filed a complaint against the president’s murderers in a Port-au-Prince court. The legal manoeuvre, part of the judicial system of countries such as Haiti that use French-style civil codes, allows a person hurt by a crime to effectively join the investigation and prosecution of the crime and recoup damages at the end.
In Moïse’s case, as The Globe’s Adrian Morrow writes, the intention is to put pressure on Haitian authorities to step up their more than three-month-old investigation, which still has not named the masterminds behind the assassination. Joverlein Moïse is asking for purely symbolic damages of five Haitian gourdes, or roughly six cents.
Boris Johnson rejects vaccine passports and mask mandates as U.K. faces surge of COVID-19 infections
With COVID-19 infections surging, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is coming under increasing pressure to kickstart vaccinations and reconsider the government’s resistance to mask mandates and vaccine passports.
As The Globe’s Paul Waldie reports from London, Britain’s vaccination program was once the envy of the world, as the U.K. raced ahead of almost every other country in immunizing its people against COVID-19. But now, the much-vaunted campaign has stalled – a survey by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) found that 16- to 29-year-olds are the most vaccine-hesitant – and Britain lags behind Canada, France, Italy, Spain and several other countries in the proportion of people who have been fully vaccinated.
Infections are surging in Britain now, topping 50,000 a day this week, and the rolling seven-day average has increased 18 per cent.
- Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine shows 90.7% efficacy in clinical trial in children
- Ontario to lift physical distancing restrictions on restaurants, bars on Monday
- Ontario can control COVID-19 with continued health measures, science table says
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Line 5 dispute is ‘directly and significantly’ impacting Canada-U.S. relations, Enbridge says: Lawyers for the company are asking a judge in Michigan to consider the bilateral implications of the state’s bid to shut down the Line 5 cross-border pipeline. Newly filed court documents say the dispute is now well and truly a federal matter because Canada has formally invoked a 1977 pipeline treaty with the United States.
Nova Scotia eyeing taxes for homebuyers coming from outside the province due to surge in demand: N.S. Premier Tim Houston has instructed provincial Finance Minister Allan MacMaster to implement a deed transfer tax on any property purchased by individuals who do not pay taxes in Nova Scotia. In a September mandate letter, the Finance Minister was also asked to impose a levy of $2 per $100 of assessed property value on every non-Nova Scotian taxpayer with property in the province.
Prop gun fired by Alec Baldwin that killed cinematographer had single live round, Hollywood union says: Baldwin said on Twitter Friday “my heart is broken” after “the tragic accident that took the life of Halyna Hutchins, a wife, mother and deeply admired colleague of ours.” The incident occurred on Thursday afternoon on the set of Rust at the Bonanza Creek Ranch, a production location in New Mexico.
U.S. Supreme Court doesn’t block Texas abortion law, sets hearing: The justices said Friday they will decide whether the federal government has the right to sue over the law. Answering that question will help determine whether the law should be blocked while legal challenges continue. The court is moving at an unusually fast pace that suggests it plans to make a decision quickly. Arguments are set for Nov. 1.
Green Party to drop legal action against Annamie Paul: Two senior party members who were not authorized to speak publicly on the matter say members of the federal council and the Green Party of Canada Fund met over the past week to call off their court action. Paul launched an arbitration last summer related to her employment contract and moves by party brass to oust her through a non-confidence vote.
Canada’s main stock index inched eked out another record high as losses in the technology sector were offset by gains in the energy sector.
The S&P/TSX composite index closed up 3.76 points at 21,216.15. In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 73.94 points at 35,677.02. The S&P 500 index was down 4.88 points at 4,544.90, while the Nasdaq composite was down 125.50 points at 15,090.20.
The Canadian dollar traded for 80.93 cents US compared with 80.97 cents US on Thursday.
Kingston’s ‘educated idiots’
“Curiously, while Queen’s has long touted extracurricular activities and the virtues of life in this medium-sized city as important aspects of the ‘Queen’s experience,’ the powers-that-be at the university have been reluctant to hold students accountable for off-campus misbehaviour.” - Ken Cuthbertson
There’s a more practical way to regulate Big Tech
“In terms of powers granted to the CRTC, it should only be able to impose requirements that are relevant for sustaining industrial and cultural flourishing. The latter would involve such matters as ensuring the presence and availability of Canadian programs, as well as access by persons with disabilities and the provision of financial or commercial information.” - Konrad von Finckenstein and Peter Menzies
I used to joke that Canada’s sex workers need a union. No one is laughing now
“The government – at nearly every level – has always been more interested in abolishing the sex trade altogether, rather than supporting sex workers’ rights and regulation, or even looking at the myriad of reasons people get into it and putting supports in place to mitigate that.” - Lana Hall
Destination unknown: Guess Where Trips plans surprise road trip itineraries
In early 2020, Jessica Off started a little side hobby to keep her (more) busy while she was on maternity leave. Called Guess Where Trips, her company offers surprise itineraries for people who crave adventure on road trips – without having to do any of the research required to find all the hidden gems that make an open-road experience so memorable.
Day trippers begin by choosing one of eight cities as a starting point. From there, they pick a theme such as Weird and Wonderful or Historic Haunts, but don’t actually know where they’re going until they open the package of four sealed envelopes, each containing a stop for the day. The mystery of how the day will be spent is part of the fun.
During the first few months after launching, she sold about five trips a day, but by the end of last summer, daily orders for Guess Where’s curated Road Trip Kits, which are $55 by mail and $39 for a digital version, had jumped to 200-plus a day.
TODAY’S LONG READ
At the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, new director Stéphane Aquin takes a no-nonsense, no-blockbuster approach
One of Stéphane Aquin’s jobs was to remove giant banners that adorned the classical columns on the Montreal Museum of Fine Art’s old Sherbrooke Street wing. The museum’s new director is taking a definite no-nonsense approach to running the facility.
After the showmanship, record crowds and multiple expansions offered by his flamboyant predecessor Nathalie Bondil, who was controversially fired from the job in July, 2020, Aquin is concentrating on lower-key exhibitions that speak to diverse local audiences.
“Fabergé eggs painted by Monet and found in King Tut’s tomb; we know that formula,” Aquin said in a recent interview. “But what is meaningful is a harder thing to define and more significant. How you look at what you thought you knew in a new way. … We are trying to see how we can have intelligent programming that truly reflects our values.”
In an era when collections dominated by male artists are no longer considered acceptable, Aquin wants to achieve gender parity in programming. And, 17 months after the death of George Floyd launched the Black Lives Matter protest, he is extremely aware of the need to diversify audiences.
Read Kate Taylor’s full story on the changes at the Montreal museum.