The BC Muslim Association says it is “gravely concerned” after an incident outside a Surrey mosque. The association says that a car sped by Ramadan worshippers leaving evening prayers and someone in the vehicle threw a substance. Surrey RCMP is confirming the incident took place and say the moving vehicle threw water at three pedestrians from the Muslim community walking near 124 Street and 72A Avenue Wednesday just before 11:00 p.m. The the car apparently sped away but returned and pretended to try and run the them over. The association is calling on police to investigate this as a potential hate crime…. and calling on political leaders, including Trudeau and John Horgan to prioritize challenging Islamophobia.
Health Canada is reviewing the first request to approve a COVID-19 vaccine for very young kids. The Moderna application is for children between the ages of six months and five years old. The company says a trial of 6,700 children determined the vaccine was safe and produced a similar antibody response to the one that is seen in adults. A single dose for children under six is 25 micrograms — one quarter of the size given to adults and teenagers and half the size used for children ages six to 11.
A man is dead after a shooting in a residential area of Maple Ridge. RCMP say they were called to 124 Avenue near Laity Street at about 2 p.m. yesterday to reports of shots fired. Mounties say officers arrived and found the victim, adding an off-duty Vancouver police officer and an off-duty nurse stepped in to help with efforts to save his life. The man died at the scene. Police say it’s still unclear whether this is related to the Lower Mainland gang conflict.
Health Canada has authorized the Canadian Blood Services to remove blood donation restrictions on men who have sex with other men and screen everyone for high-risk sexual behaviors regardless of gender or sexuality. Health Canada calls the decision “a significant milestone toward a more inclusive blood donation system nationwide” The new screening approach, which is expected to be implemented by Sept. 30, is sexual behaviour-based and will apply to anyone who donates blood or plasma.
Statistics Canada says real gross domestic product rose 1.1 per cent in February, the largest monthly increase in about a year. The rebound in accommodation and food services is among the reasons for the boost, as restrictions were eased following the surge in the Omicron variant. Early suggestions show the March number will be more like 0.5 per cent.
An all-party committee appointed to review B-C’s Police Act is recommending moving to a provincial police service to achieve what it calls a new vision of policing and community safety — rather than sticking with the R-C-M-P, which is responsible for policing most of rural B-C and some cities. The report says the committee was appointed amid widespread awareness of systemic racism in policing, demands for more accountability and questions about police responses to mental health and addictions issues.
The Rolling Thunder group is expected to arrive this afternoon in Ottawa before a gathering tomorrow morning at the National War Memorial and a rally on Parliament Hill. Hundreds of motorcycles will be in the city, although police have set up an exclusion zone downtown and say they’ll be monitoring closely as participants drive around the area Saturday. Organizers haven’t been clear about what exactly they’re protesting except to say they’ll be peacefully celebrating freedom. Rolling Thunder is partnered with several groups apparently linked to the so-called Freedom Convoy, and a statement on the group’s website refers to the convoy as a “lawful protest” that spreads peace and love.
The B-C government says it will not move ahead with controversial legislation that would have forced youths who overdose to undergo treatment for up to seven days. Mental Health and Addictions Minister Sheila Malcolmson says further consultations with First Nations, families, health-care experts and people who use drugs confirmed concerns about Bill 22. She says they reaffirmed that there is trauma associated with holding youth against their will, especially if they’re Indigenous, among other concerns. Malcolmson says the province will now develop a new strategy with First Nations groups to help young people in crisis.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is reporting a third confirmed outbreak of the H-5-N-1 avian flu virus in a small poultry flock in B-C. The B-C Ministry of Agriculture says the flock in the Regional District of Central Kootenay has been placed under quarantine by the C-F-I-A. It says it has notified producers within a 12-kilometre radius of the positive test results. The ministry also says seven wild birds that died between April 20th and 27th have tested positive for H-5 strains of avian flu, in addition to two bald eagles earlier this year in Delta and Vancouver.
Reigning ”Jeopardy!” champion Mattea Roach represents a new generation of the quiz show’s all-star players. As of Friday, the 23-year-old Canadian has won 19 games and amassed 469-thousand-184 dollars in prize money. That puts her among the show’s top 10 contestants for both consecutive victories and regular-season winnings. Roach is in the company of standout players including Ken Jennings, who’s currently hosting the show, and this season’s champs Amy Schneider and Matt Amodio. Roach, who lives in Toronto, credits her parents for her love of learning and is applying to law school. She begins her fifth week of competition Monday on ”Jeopardy!”