1. Canadian College Students Present A Petition of Tuition Refund
A petition was launched online by BC University (University of British Columbia) students asking the University authority to cut tuition fees for the upcoming summer semester and to refund money for the last winter semester. Some students pointed out that there are many problems in online education, such as fewer communication opportunities with professors, some students may not have the access to the network, some international students have to jet lag and so on, but the school charges the price which is the same as that of off-line (classroom) class, or even charges higher tuition fees as usual in this special difficult time, which is very unfair to students.
The Student Union of the University of Toronto has also asked for a summer semester fee reduction and a refund for a number of campus services including sports facilities.
2. Phased Reopening Scheme Announced in Quebec Province, Canada
Day Care and Primary Schools in Quebec Province Resumes in Two Batches
Quebec Province plans to reopen primary schools and day-care services outside Montreal on May 11. Primary schools and day-care services on Montreal island will reopen on May 19. Secondary schools, colleges and universities will reopen in late August.
Ontario Province Reopens in Three Phase
On the afternoon of April 27, Ontario Provincial Government announced that it would restart the economy in three phases in the coming weeks and months, without specifying when the plan would be implemented.
Phase 1: To open certain workplaces and allow small gatherings;
Phase 2: To open more workplaces and outdoor spaces and allow larger gatherings;
Phase 3: To further relax restrictions on public gatherings and open all workplaces "in responsible way ".
Each phase will last at least two to four weeks. The Provincial Government also said that when and how to restart will depend on a number of factors, including: continued decline in new cases for two to four weeks; a decrease in cases where the source of infection is not found; and a decrease in the number of new hospitalizations.
3. Meat Processing Factories in Alberta Province See Outbreak of Pandemic, Filipino Workers Are Targeted for Cyber Attacks
Cargill Incorporation is one of the first three meat processing factories in Alberta to suffer from an outbreak of a pandemic. More than 500 employees have been confirmed, more than a quarter of the total. The vast majority of Cargill employees are immigrants, with the largest number of Filipinos, followed by Chinese, Vietnamese, and Mexicans. Some Filipino workers say they initially wrote to the Factory to stop work. As the epidemic is growing, it was only on April 20 that the Factory announced its shutdown. Now they are scapegoated and attacked online. Some people on the Internet said that the COVID-19 was brought to the Factory by Filipinos, some posts that Filipinos like living together in a large family, contributing to the spread of the virus. It has been argued that it is always easier to blame the colored minorities.
Meat processing is a necessary service, cannot be suspended for a long time. Some Cargill employees say the factory is trying to persuade them to end their quarantine and return to work. They are in a dilemma, both worrying about losing their jobs in the future and concerning about going back to work and getting infected with the virus, which affects their families.
Cargill is a Minnesota-based US multinational company and it has branches in many countries. One-third of the beef in the Canadian market comes from Cargill in southern Alberta, Canada.
4. Canada's Fisheries in Struggling See Plummeted Demand for Seafood
For fishermen on the Atlantic coast of St. Lawrence Bay, Canada, life will be tough this year. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in plummeted demand for seafood, with the purchase price being at half the normal price, really gloomy prospects for seafood sales.
Lobster fishing is very expensive to operate, and fishing boats need to enter the deep sea and it takes at least a week to go to sea. If the price is really too low to support the operating cost, all the fishermen can do is only to give up fishing.
Lobster fishing in St. Lawrence Bay is scheduled to begin on May 13 and the situation is even more gloomy since people want to buy live lobster, which means great challenges to the sales of a lobster under the current epidemic situation.
Fishermen appeal to Canadians for more consumption on local seafood to support local industries.
5. Think-tank Analysis: Canada Officially Enters the Economic Recession
According to a statement issued on May 1, by the Business Cycle Board l of the C.D. Howe Institute, a Canadian think-tank, preliminary statistical analysis shows that the Canadian economy is now officially entering recession due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This time it will be more severe than the recession in 2008 caused by the financial crisis.
Canada lost one million jobs in March and employment slumped. According to Statistics Canada's preliminary estimate, the economy fell by 9% in March, and data will only get worse in April as a result of the month-long suspension, isolation, and other anti-epidemic measures.
Statistics Canada will release official economic data for March and the first quarter of 2020 on May 29.
6. Canada Announces New President for Bank of Canada
On May 1, Bill Morneau, Canada's Finance Minister, announced that Tiff Macklem, the Former Senior Deputy President of Bank of Canada, was appointed the new president of the Bank of Canda.
Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau said Tiff Macklem has extensive experience and expertise in the global financial system and risk management and believes he will lead Canadian banks to a favorable position to deal with the unprecedented economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 epidemic and eventually lead Canada’s economy to recovery.
Tiff Macklem is currently the Dean of Rotman School of Management of the University of Toronto, followed by decades of service at the Bank of Canada.
The current President Stephen Poloz will end his service on June 2 and Tiff Macklem will assume office on June 3.
After the outbreak, Canada's Federal Government and Bank of Canada have injected more than $250 billion to provide direct financial assistance to businesses and individuals. In the past few months, the Bank of Canada has also cut interest rates continuously, reducing the benchmark rate to an all-time low of 0.25 percent in response to the epidemic.
7. Air Canada Expects to Return to Normal by Christmas
COVID-19 pandemic is still widespread in many countries around the world today. Air Canada suspended at least 90% of flights during the outbreak.
Air Canada is expected to resume normal operations before the Christmas season, Air Canada said recently.
At present, executives of major airlines in Canada and the United States are discussing how to strengthen the cleaning and disinfection of passenger cabins after resuming civil aviation operations, how to improve passenger cabin air circulation, and whether to continue to require passengers to wear masks all the time.
However, some civil aviation experts pointed out that the return to the normal operation of the civil aviation industry depends on whether most countries in the world lift the travel ban and lift the 14-day quarantine of civil aviation passengers. Because no traveler is willing to be forcibly isolated for 14 days after arriving in a country by air.
8. Canadian American Footballer Works as Nurse for An Elderly Home
29-year-old American footballer, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, a native of Quebec, currently plays for the Kansas City Chiefs and has just won the Super Bowl with his teammates a few months ago. In May 2018, he graduated from the Faculty of Medicine, McGill University, and is the only active member of the American Football League with a degree of M.D.
Quebec is the hardest-hit region by the pandemic in Canada. In Quebec's health care system, nurses are in the most shortage for elderly homes. To help fight the epidemic, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif came to an elderly home on the southern bank of Montreal City, Quebec a week ago to begin his nursing training.
Besides him,34-year-old retired figure skater Joannie Rochette also interned in a nursing home. She won a bronze medal in Women's Skating at the Vancouver Olympics in 2010. Last week, she just graduated from the McGill University School of Medicine.
9. Under Pandemic Media Industry Cuts Employee and Pay Postmedia Closes 15 Newspapers
Canadian newspaper group Postmedia Network announced on April 28 that it would reduce about 80 employees and permanently close 15 local newspapers. The old-brand media group has become a new victim of the pandemic.
Torstar Corp. that owns Toronto Star and other newspapers recently fired 85 employees, including editors of 11 community newspapers, and reduced the salaries of some senior managers and directors by 20%.
Another old-brand media giant, BBC predicts the pandemic will lead to the reduction of BBC’s income by £125 million.