Skip to main content

Good morning,

BCE Inc. is undertaking its largest restructuring initiative in nearly 30 years by reducing its work force by 4,800 positions, blaming a difficult economy and a CRTC regulatory requirement to open its network to competitors.

In an open letter to employees yesterday, president and chief executive officer Mirko Bibic called the decision “incredibly tough” and said that, wherever possible, the company would use vacancies and natural attrition to reduce its work force, which is being cut by 9 per cent.

Read more:

Open this photo in gallery:

BCE Inc. headquarters is seen in Montreal on Aug. 3, 2023.Christinne Muschi/The Canadian Press

This is the daily Morning Update newsletter. If you’re reading this on the web, or it was forwarded to you from someone else, you can sign up for Morning Update and more than 20 other Globe newsletters on our newsletter sign-up page.

Pakistan awaits results of election mired in controversy and suspended mobile services

In Pakistan, it’s commonplace for the country’s all-powerful military to pull the strings – and it sometimes pulls candidates from the ballot if they challenge its authority. But for Pakistan’s 128 million registered voters, this election has been so directly controlled that some informed observers are describing this as a new, more overtly military-led era in Pakistani politics.

The vote is taking place at a moment of crisis in Pakistan, as stubborn 30-per-cent inflation and steep currency devaluation have coincided with violent conflicts on its borders with Afghanistan, Iran and India, as well as terrorist upsurges in the country’s west and north. This means that both the economy and large swaths of national policy are dominated by the military.

Yet the military’s decision to banish former prime minister Imran Khan’s highly popular party may have backfired, drawing unprecedented public attention to the undemocratic nature of the system – and, possibly, delivering defiant votes to some PTI candidates. Early election results suggested that strong turnout in PTI-supporting districts has kept Khan’s party competitive.

Open this photo in gallery:

Polling officers count ballot papers during the general election in Karachi, Pakistan, Feb. 8, 2024.AKHTAR SOOMRO/Reuters

Belleville, Ont., declares state of emergency after 23 overdoses in two days

The City of Belleville has declared a state of emergency after 23 overdoses in the span of two days, including 14 in two hours. After making the declaration, Mayor Neil Ellis called on the provincial and federal governments yesterday to provide assistance to the southeastern Ontario city of roughly 55,000.

Open this photo in gallery:

Belleville mayor Neil Ellis speaks about recent rash of overdoses during a press conference in Belleville, Ont., on Feb. 7, 2024.HO/The Canadian Press

In Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, basketball builds Indigenous sisterhood on the court

For about two decades, the All My Relations Women’s Basketball team has been a safe and healthy vehicle for the women of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, and an encouraging space for them to get involved in their community. It comprises 14 athletes from various nations and backgrounds, with players ranging in age from 16 to 41. Many of them are single mothers and postsecondary students, and all are dedicated advocates for sports and healthy living.

Open this photo in gallery:

Camellia Brown looks for an open team mate while playing a scrimmage against players in the Strathcona Basketball League ahead of the 2024 ANBT.Paige Taylor White/The Globe and Mail

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

Also on our radar

Putin urges U.S. to push Ukraine to talks during Tucker Carlson interview, hints at possible WSJ reporter prisoner swap: Russian President Vladimir Putin used an interview with former Fox News host Tucker Carlson to urge Washington to recognize Moscow’s interests and persuade Ukraine to sit down for talks.

U.S. Supreme Court justices raise skepticism about Colorado decision keeping Trump off ballot: Liberal justices of the U.S. Supreme Court have joined their conservative colleagues in asking pointed questions about a case from Colorado that would strip Donald Trump from the presidential primary ballot in that state.

Parents of woman killed in 2017 collision say they were told to pay $200 to meet Quebec minister: A couple who lost their daughter in a car accident told a Quebec legislative committee yesterday that when they requested to meet the province’s Transportation Minister last year, they were told to pay $100 each to attend a party fundraiser.

Poilievre promises Conservative government will improve access to information: Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre says access to information requests need quicker responses and Canada’s Information Commissioner should be given more power over “the gatekeepers” within the federal government.

Brookfield’s Bruce Flatt says commercial real estate market is at a turning point: Brookfield Corp. chief executive officer Bruce Flatt is predicting “a much different story” for the beleaguered commercial real estate sector over the next two years, suggesting falling interest rates and an uptick in transactions should create “major tailwinds” for property owners.

The Super Bowl is a hot spot for sex trafficking. Here’s how businesses can help combat it: The Super Bowl is a huge draw for sex trafficking, including at viewing parties in Canada. This is a call to action for businesses to do their part to fight it.

Take our biz quiz!

Canadians are now able to use a new artificial intelligence assistant from Google. It’s called:

A) Mercury

B) Gemini

C) Libra

D) Aquarius

Morning markets

Global markets hold week’s gains: Global shares stood their ground on Friday after Wall Street scaled new heights, with looming U.S. inflation data set to help investors update their bets on interest rate cuts. Just after 5:30 a.m. ET, Britain’s FTSE 100 was up 0.11 per cent. Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC 40 advanced 0.10 per cent and 0.02 per cent, respectively. Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.09 per cent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.83 per cent in a shortened trading session. New York futures were steady. The Canadian dollar little changed at 74.30 US cents.

What everyone’s talking about

Bridging the gendered political divide not for marriage, but for love

“I am familiar with the argument that women have had it with men, and wouldn’t contest that some women have had it with some men. But is it true that men’s appeal to women fluctuates according to their population-wide eligibility? Some conditions favour marriage more than others, but sexual orientation is real. Even if there’s no man around you’d want to marry – even if marriage itself isn’t for you – if you’re wired for man-liking, men you shall like.” – Phoebe Maltz Bovy

King Charles has cancer – the type is none of our business

“These demands to know what exactly is wrong with Charles come off as insensitive at best. And unnecessary. What does it matter? Whatever happens to Charles, there is a plan for when he dies. He’s going to, at some point. And if his health gets progressively worse and Charles can’t perform his duties, there are Plans B in place, well mapped out.” – Marsha Lederman

Today’s editorial cartoon

Open this photo in gallery:

Illustration by David Parkins

Living better

Books we’re reading and loving: Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow; and non-fiction for struggling working parents

Each week, Globe and Mail staffers and readers share what they’re reading now, whether it’s a hot new release or an old book they’re discovering for the first time. Here’s the latest, with more to come every Friday.

Moment in time: Feb. 9, 2021

Open this photo in gallery:

Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Second impeachment trial of Donald Trump begins

It felt like a show that never ends. Just weeks after the violent Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol resulted in five people dead, former U.S. president Donald Trump faced the first day of his second impeachment trial. Republican leaders such as Mitch McConnell had already denounced the violence at the Capitol and swiftly laid blame at the feet of Mr. Trump, who had delivered a fiery speech ahead of the riot. The four-hour debate on the Senate floor featured video of the Jan. 6 rampage. Mr. Trump’s lawyers argued that a former president could not be subject to impeachment – he was impeached on Jan. 13, while he was still president. And he had already been impeached in 2019 and acquitted in 2020. A mix of video clips showed Mr. Trump telling supporters to come to the Capitol that fateful day to stop Joe Biden’s presidential win from being ratified. Democratic Representative Jamie Raskin, the lead impeachment manager, declared: “If that is not an impeachable offence, then there is no such thing.” Nonetheless, only 57 senators voted “guilty,” 10 shy of the two-thirds majority needed, and Mr. Trump was acquitted on Feb. 13. Maryam Shah

Enjoy today's horoscopes. Solve today's puzzles. Read today's Letters to the Editor.

If you’d like to receive this newsletter by e-mail every weekday morning, go here to sign up. If you have any feedback, send us a note.

Follow related authors and topics

Authors and topics you follow will be added to your personal news feed in Following.

Interact with The Globe