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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reiterated that Canadians should get the first COVID-19 vaccine they can, contradicting the recommendation from an independent vaccine advisory group that people who are at lower risk of contracting the novel coronavirus should wait for a preferred shot.
Trudeau made his comments the day after the National Advisory Council on Immunization (NACI) upheld its position that waiting for an mRNA vaccine, like those from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna, is preferable to receiving a viral vector vaccine, from Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca, when personal risk of contracting COVID-19 is lower.
NACI’s Monday advice was criticized by physicians and scientists who said it created a hierarchy of vaccines and unnecessarily stoked distrust of a vaccine that played a leading role in subsiding Britain’s third wave.
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Ottawa adds five years to timeline to end First Nations water advisories
The Trudeau government, which once promised to end all long-term drinking-water advisories in First Nations this year, now estimates it could take until 2026.
The new timeline was not announced by the minister who is responsible, but revealed in government documents that officials from Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) presented to the House of Commons Public Accounts committee. The documents say the department will continue work with First Nations to implement projects that address needs for all communities affected by long-term drinking-water advisories, and note an expected completion date of March, 2026. The documents did not say why it would take another five years.
Alberta vows to curb university’s research ties to China
The Alberta government is expressing alarm and vowing to take action to curtail the University of Alberta’s collaboration with China in strategically important scientific and technology fields.
Advanced Education Minister Demetrios Nicolaides said he intends to speak to the University of Alberta’s administration about the need to curb scientific research that could undermine Canada’s national interest. National security experts warn China could use these collaborations to steal Canadian intellectual property for the benefit of Beijing’s military apparatus.
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Super Thursday vote could spark another independence showdown in Scotland: People across Scotland will head to the polls on Thursday in an election that’s likely to set the stage for a showdown over independence. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s Scottish National Party appears headed for a major victory, which will bolster her call for a referendum on sovereignty and pose a direct challenge to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is straining to keep the United Kingdom together.
South Africa approves ban on captive-bred lion industry: South Africa says it will shut down its $180-million captive-bred lion industry after a two-year study concluded that it is damaging ecotourism, hurting the country’s image, failing to help wildlife conservation, possibly contributing to illegal poaching and potentially breeding diseases that could spread to humans.
Toronto’s red hot real estate market cools in April: Toronto’s housing market started to slow in April after months of frenetic activity, with sales and the average price falling from March.
Human trafficking in Canada at record high, data show: A record-high number of human trafficking incidents were reported to police in Canada in 2019, but one advocate for women and girls calls that number just “the tip of the iceberg.”
India’s coronavirus cases cross 20 million: India surged past 20 million COVID-19 cases yesterday as the deadly second wave of infections has added 10 million cases in only four months.
World markets advance: Global shares edged up on Wednesday as U.S. stock futures steadied after a pullback in tech companies while European markets were buoyed by accelerating business activity and positive earnings. Just before 6 a.m. ET, Britain’s FTSE 100 rose 1.18 per cent. Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC 40 were up 1.41 per cent and 1.01 per cent, respectively. In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slid 0.49 per cent. Markets in Japan were closed. New York futures were higher. The Canadian dollar was trading at 81.40 US cents.
WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
Andrew Coyne: “The issue, then, is not why [Defence Minister Harjit] Sajjan failed to take any action on the complaints against [Jonathan] Vance, but why no one else did – why the matter, after a few perfunctory inquiries intended to ‘put some things in writing,’ was allowed to drop.”
David Shribman: “On Tuesday, I passed Tree of Life, just as I have pretty much every day on my neighbourhood walk. Even in the high humidity of a 23-degree spring morning, I still felt a chill. Sadly, the artistry of [Daniel] Libeskind will not be able to erase that. The synagogue will open again – but here in Pittsburgh, there is no closure.”
Cathal Kelly: “Agreeing that fighting was a scourge had the unanticipated effect of making people believe the league intended to do something definitive about it. Nobody in the NHL – not the players, not the coaches, not the executives, not the owners – wanted that to happen. Nobody. There was no institutional will underlying the institution’s message. So the NHL has begun to slowly tack the other way.”
TODAY’S EDITORIAL CARTOON
Globe Craft Club: Learn to make an adorable miniature bowl and spoon
For our ninth Craft Club, miniaturist and artist Tom Brown will teach us how to fashion a tiny mixing bowl and wooden spoon out of a pop can, popsicle stick and twig. Join the live stream on May 11 at 7 p.m. ET.
MOMENT IN TIME: MAY 5, 2018
Childish Gambino releases This is America
On the same night Donald Glover hosted Saturday Night Live, his hip-hop persona, Childish Gambino, released the single This is America and performed it on the program. However, it was the simultaneously released video accompanying the song that provoked the most reaction. Directed by filmmaker Hiro Murai, the video, like the song, was loaded with metaphors about race and gun violence in the United States and was a study in violent musical contradictions. After a shirtless Childish Gambino shoots a defenseless man, the tone changes from joyful South African choral singing to ominous trap music. The body is dragged away; the gun is treated with reverence. Later a choir is massacred with an automatic rifle, which was interpreted as a reference to the 2015 shooting of nine Black people in a church basement by a white supremacist in Charleston, S.C. The video received nearly 13 million views in the 24 hours following its YouTube posting and accounted for 68 per cent of the song’s total streams within the first days following its release. This is America went on to win in all four of its nominated categories at the 2019 Grammy Awards, including best music video. Brad Wheeler