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A Globe and Mail investigation into the skyrocketing costs of private travel nursing published in February found that Canadian Health Labs invoiced health authorities in Newfoundland and Labrador $1.6-million in meal allowances for the nurses it dispatched to that province, but told workers they were required to pay for their own food. Newfoundland’s Liberal government has asked its comptroller-general to probe those billings.

The Globe has confirmed that the same billing discrepancy took place in New Brunswick, a province that leaned more heavily on CHL than Newfoundland. The province’s Vitalité Health Network, which delivers French-language medical services, paid CHL for meal allowances for its travelling staff, but the company’s workers were told they were on their own when it came to paying for meals, documents and interviews show.

Toronto-based CHL charged taxpayers $46 a day for meal allowances for each out-of-province nurse or personal-support worker, the health authority confirmed to The Globe. But nine nurses CHL assigned to Vitalité told The Globe that they never received any per diems from CHL for food. The Globe is not identifying the nurses because they signed nondisclosure agreements.

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The Campbellton Regional Hospital in northern New Brunswick.Chris Donovan/The Globe and Mail

U.S. VP Harris to meet Israeli cabinet official who is in Washington despite Netanyahu’s rebuke

Vice President Kamala Harris on Monday is hosting Benny Gantz, a centrist political rival of Benjamin Netanyahu, who is visiting Washington in defiance of the Israeli Prime Minister.

In her meeting with Gantz, Harris plans to press for a temporary ceasefire deal that would allow for the release of several categories of hostages being held by the Islamist militant group Hamas. Israel has essentially agreed to the deal.

In some of the strongest comments by a senior leader of the U.S. government to date on the issue, Harris on Sunday demanded Hamas agree to an immediate six-week ceasefire while forcefully urging Israel to do more to boost aid deliveries into Gaza, where she said innocent people were suffering a “humanitarian catastrophe.”

Harris also pressed the Israeli government and outlined specific ways on how more aid can flow into the densely populated enclave where hundreds of thousands of people are facing famine, after five months of Israel’s military campaign.

A Hamas delegation had arrived in Cairo for the latest round of ceasefire talks on Sunday, billed by many as the final possible hurdle for a truce, but it was unclear if any progress was made. Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth’s online version reported that Israel boycotted the talks after Hamas rejected its demand for a complete list identifying hostages who are still alive.

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U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris speaks on the 59th commemoration of the Bloody Sunday Selma bridge crossing on March 3, 2024 in Selma, Alabama.Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

As Ukraine loses ground, its military-intelligence chief remains a figure of stability – and a thorn in Russia’s side

Ukraine’s Lieutenant-General Kyrylo Budanov is one of few people who knows exactly what transpires when something goes wrong on enemy lines – when something blows up deep behind Russian lines, or even inside Russia itself. Russian prosecutors have charged the Ukrainian military-intelligence service commander with masterminding more than 100 “terrorist” attacks on Russian soil, including an October, 2022, explosion that badly damaged the US$3.7-billion bridge connecting Russian territory to the occupied Crimean Peninsula.

That campaign of retributive violence is now widening to include battlefields far beyond Russia and Ukraine. Special forces from the military-intelligence unit were involved in a January clash in Sudan in which they fought alongside Sudanese government forces against rebels aided by mercenaries from Russia’s notorious Wagner Group, according to two sources. The Globe and Mail is not identifying them because they are not authorized to publicly discuss the mission.

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Lieutenant-General Kyrylo Budanov, Ukrainian Chief of the Defence Intelligence on March 2, 2024.Olga Ivashchenko/The Globe and Mail

Inspired by the Chinese trend, a U of T grad is renting out her time to the socially anxious and isolated

Like many Gen Zers, Helen Li wants something less rigid than a steady climb up the career ladder. So she created a job for herself in which she rents out her time, whether it’s joining clients for meals, exercising, shopping, travelling or attending medical appointments. The 21-year-old, who studied statistics and psychology at the University of Toronto, drew inspiration from a growing trend in China where people lease their leisure time, skills and experiences to make a living.

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Helen Li, University of Toronto graduate with a double major, is uninterested in the traditional route to success.Supplied

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Also on our radar

As Super Tuesday nears, Trump plans for purges and rapid-fire changes in a second presidency: Despite unprecedented legal troubles – Donald Trump, the first former president to be criminally indicted, faces four trials, including for trying to overturn his 2020 election loss – he is virtually certain to win the Republican nomination.

Bank of Canada expected to hold rates steady, even with inflation back in target range: The Bank of Canada is expected to stay the course this week and remain tight-lipped about the timing of interest-rate cuts, even as the pace of inflation has fallen back within the central bank’s target range.

Complaint from Capital Power shows tension around Ottawa’s plans to back carbon capture: Capital Power Corp. is warning that it may have to shelve plans for one of Canada’s largest carbon-capture projects, at its gas-fuelled Genesee Generating Station in Alberta, as it grows impatient with negotiations around a deal to use federal dollars to provide revenue certainty.

Nickel’s existential moment: Two years ago, nickel was one of the hottest commodities on the planet. But after a short-lived trading frenzy drove nickel to a record high in March, 2022, the commodity went into a steep decline. In the past year alone, nickel has tumbled almost 30 per cent to around US$17,500 a ton.

McCarthy Tétrault experiments with AI tools expected to reshape how law firms operate: McCarthy Tétrault is two months into a pilot project using three different generative AI platforms at the firm, ChatMT, Co-Pilot and Co-Counsel. Everyone agrees AI is going to change the way law firms operate. No one is quite sure how.

Morning markets

World shares tipped higher as a mixed European open could not dispel enthusiasm over record heights reached by Japan’s Nikkei and as investors braced for a week packed with central bank events and major data.

Japan’s Nikkei climbed 0.5 per cent to break 40,000 for the first time, having risen for five weeks straight. Europe’s broadest index of stocks steadied, with Germany’s DAX, France’s CAC 40 and Britain’s FTSE little changed in early trading.

The dollar traded at 73.73 U.S. cents.

What everyone’s talking about

We do not fully appreciate the consequences of Canada’s housing problem

“The challenges of this market form a well-established litany at this point, yet still, there seems to be little appreciation of their magnitude or the consequences of failing to address these issues.” – Corey Hawtin

Apple’s failed electric-vehicle move shows arrogance remains its core competency

“While Apple groupies moan about the epic fail in Cupertino, investors – the people who bet on the ability of a company to monetize whiz-band ideas – cheered the company’s exit from the EV market, sending Apple shares up sharply on the news. They had watched for more than a year the widening gap between the Apple vision and the market reality.” – Gus Carlson

Today’s editorial cartoon

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David Parkins/The Globe and Mail

Living better

Life lessons from winter camping in the Canadian Shield

For photographer Joel Rodriguez, winter camping is an unexpected yet vital chapter that has helped him befriend Canadian winters. He tells us what he’s learned, and how to get the most out of your experience.

Moment in time: From the archives

The first female trader at the Toronto Stock Exchange

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Heather Whitehead, the first woman floor trader in the Toronto stock Exchange.JACK DOBSON/The Globe and Mail

For more than 100 years, photographers and photo editors working for The Globe and Mail have preserved an extraordinary collection of news photography. Every Monday, The Globe features one of these images. This month, we’re remembering the accomplishments of trail-blazing women in honour of International Women’s Day.

Heather Whitehead made history in 1974, when she became the first female floor trader to work at a Canadian stock exchange. Ms. Whitehead, who was originally from Newfoundland, attended Dalhousie University before relocating to Toronto. She was hired by Wood Gundy Inc., a Canadian brokerage later acquired by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. At 23, she was assigned to trade industrial and bank stocks on a desk at the Toronto Stock Exchange. She entered the industry as it came to grips with computerization, which threatened to eliminate the role of floor trader altogether. In a Globe and Mail article published the week before she made her first trade, Ms. Whitehead said she considered the practical jokes – chewing gum stuck to the bottom of her shoe, a fake phone receiver in place of a real one – a sign of acceptance, not rejection. “I don’t see any blatant signs that they think of me as a token broad. I want to be accepted as one of the guys.” Irene Galea

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