1 FIGHTING THE FIGHT WITH A HUNGER STRIKE In light of the Idle No More movement among aboriginal people across Canada, the chief of Attawapiskat has started a hunger strike. Chief Theresa Spence says she is protesting the Harper government’s unilateral decision-making and unfair treatment of aboriginal leaders and the treaties. She says she is willing to die for her people.
2 SANTA IS PACKING HEAT This holiday season Abbotsford police are taking a different approach to law enforcement. As part of an effort called ‘Operation Resolution’, the police are sending out Christmas cards that feature Santa dressed as a member of a SWAT team accompanied by a greeting that reads “Which list will you be on next year?” to repeat offenders. They’re hoping the card will inspire criminals to turn their lives around… because everyone loves a Christmas MIRACLE!!
3 CAN I GET A WITNESS? The feds are expanding Canada’s witness protection program. The changes will make it easier for people in the provincial program to change their identities. It will also mean federal agencies responsible for national security and public safety will be able to refer people to the program rather than just law enforcement agencies. This comes just a month after NDP MP Olivia Chow recommended that more support be given to the federal witness protection program in light of the shootings in Toronto this past summer.
4 PUBLIC SERVANTS COST A LOT Canada’s budget watchdog says the average federal public servant costs $114, 000 a year. That includes wages, pension and benefits. This amounts to about $43 billion in costs to the federal government and tax payers, yet even more fuel for the Conservative government to use when it needs to defend itself for reining in costs (i.e. cutting federal jobs).
5 SK TO FEED THE WORLD Potash Corp. and the provincial government have donated $50 million dollars to a new research institute at the University of Saskatchewan, which will look for new ways to feed the world (not a daunting task at all). The news comes just as Saskatchewan universities face budget cuts, of which one of the most unpopular was the closure of the University of Saskatchewan’s Emma Lake campus.
6 GIVE ME BACK MY MONKEY!! As you can imagine, the owner of Darwin the “well-dressed” IKEA monkey wants him back. Surprise, surprise!