Thursday September 24, 2020


Climate Action

Laurier research centre leads new international partnership to address equity and accessibility within climate action planning

As an increasing number of Canadian municipalities declare climate emergencies and develop comprehensive climate action plans, well-intentioned efforts to mitigate climate change can exacerbate or create social inequities within communities. Researchers at Wilfrid Laurier University are teaming up with stakeholders across Canada and internationally to identify, develop and test innovative and practical approaches to addressing climate change in a manner that is just and equitable for all. Led by Laurier’s Viessmann Centre for Engagement and Research in Sustainability (VERiS), the project, titled Toward Just Transitions: A Partnership for Addressing Equity and Accessibility in Municipal Climate Action Planning, will launch this fall with a series of three online workshops. The workshops will bring together members of equity-seeking groups and the organizations that support them, government representatives, social innovators and academics in an effort to collectively shape and focus research. Confirmed partners for the first phase of the project include the City of Kitchener, Canadian Urban Sustainability Practitioners, the University of Waterloo, and the African, Caribbean and Black Network of Waterloo Region. more ...

Media & Culture

In search of an American tax daddy for Canadian media

The federal government is apparently preparing massive regulation of the Internet, pandering to the views of niche lobby groups - By Peter Menzies

The nation’s cultural policies may soon switch from protecting Canada from foreign influences to depending on them. That’s because Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault seems determined to shift the burden of funding the nation’s cultural industries to foreign companies. The details of the new communications legislation Guilbeault’s been promising remain under wraps. But he’s strongly signalling he’s preparing massive regulation of the Internet, pandering to the views of niche lobby groups such as the Friends of Canadian Broadcasting. “Why does our government allow Internet broadcasters like Netflix, Disney, Amazon and Apple to play by their own rules, saving them hundreds of millions per year at the expense of Canadian culture,” Friends asked in a letter to Guilbeault. “Why allow them to dictate their own rules? If Netflix were playing by the same rules as Canadian broadcasters, it would need to invest as much as $1.5 billion over five years in Canadian storytellers, protecting the stories that make us who we are.” more ...

COVID - Testing

Ontario Expands COVID-19 Testing to Pharmacies

Up to 60 Ontario Pharmacies to Offer Testing by Appointment Starting Friday

The Ontario government is providing people with convenient and timely access to free COVID-19 testing at pharmacies in the province. As of Friday, up to 60 pharmacies in Ontario will begin offering testing by appointment only, with further locations coming online in the coming weeks. This initiative will expand testing capacity well beyond the province's 150 assessment centres. "We rely on our pharmacists for our flu shots, prescriptions, and important health advice for ourselves and our families. It makes sense to engage them as key partners in delivering more COVID-19 testing," said Premier Ford. "I have to thank Shoppers Drug Mart, Rexall, and the independent pharmacies who have stepped up in a big way to help expand testing to more people in the province. With everyone pitching in, we are well on our way to reaching our goal of 50,000 tests a day and stopping the spread of COVID-19." more ...


JA Waterloo Region celebrates 50 years

Junior Achievement Waterloo Region is celebrating fifty years delivering on its mission to inspire youth in the community to succeed in a global economy. Working within the schools and in after-school programs – and most recently using interactive online programs - JA provides essential education in financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship to students in Grades 3-12. Since forming on September 22nd, 1970, Junior Achievement has provided 50 years of programming and has grown regionally to bring their cost-free programs to students. Programming includes a variety of topics such as Our Business World for elementary students, Economics for Success for middle school students, and the famous Company Program for those in high school. “We’re extremely proud of the work we do in the community, the difference it has made and will continue to make for our young people and their future,” said Murray Flanagan (photo), Board Chair for JA Waterloo. “We’re inviting the entire region to celebrate with us, to ‘Experience JA’ and see first-hand the confidence students gain with the power of JA knowledge behind them.” more ...


NACO seeks more support for entrepreneurs following Throne Speech

Federal government support for entrepreneurs key to Canada’s economic recovery; Urgent action is required to create a domestic supply chain of capital - both public and private sector, working in partnership to support Canada’s entrepreneurs.

Yesterday's Speech from the Throne underscored the importance of Canada’s small businesses, offering a plan to secure our country’s economic future and prioritizing the health and safety of our citizens. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has had devastating effects on communities across Canada and has threatened the future of our innovation ecosystem, with additional pressures felt by entrepreneurs from historically underrepresented groups such as women entrepreneurs, Black entrepreneurs and those located in non-urban centres. NACO applauded the government’s efforts to advance diversity and inclusion and to provide support for all entrepreneurs. However, further action is required to ensure that Canada’s innovation ecosystem does not lose momentum. “We are encouraged by today’s speech, particularly the expressions of support for small businesses, entrepreneurs and the additional emphasis on the clean energy sector” said Claudio Rojas (photo), CEO of National Angel Capital Organization (NACO). “Angel investors are well-positioned to help Canada build back better by facilitating early-stage entrepreneurship and supporting emerging innovations that will create local jobs and support the health and safety of Canadians from coast to coast to coast.” more ...


Sex is okay, just don’t sing

Sex advice for pandemic prevention makes as much sense as implementing a security system while leaving the front door open - By Lee Harding

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control threw logic out the window with its “ COVID-19 and Sex ” advice. The document reveals contradiction, ignorance and hypocrisy. “If you’re feeling fine and have no symptoms of COVID-19, you can still have sex. If you’re feeling sick, skip sex,” it says. Thanks. “Not tonight, I have a headache,” is something people never would have thought of. And what about the idea that even if someone feels okay, they might still be infected? “Sex can be very important for mental, social and physical well-being; it is a part of everyday life,” the centre says. “People can, will and should continue to have sex during the COVID-19 pandemic. Messages that discourage or shame people from sexual contact can be harmful and may discourage people from seeking essential sexual health services.” more ...


Region of Waterloo Council approves extension of Face Covering By-law

Regional Council approved extending the Face Covering By-law and Code of Use By-law until May 31st, 2021, unless repealed before or extended by Council. Council also approved amending the Face Covering By-law to require a face covering in taxis and ride shares, as well as common areas of apartments and condominiums. The extension was approved as COVID-19 cases rise, and it enables residents of Waterloo Region to continue protecting each other while keeping the community running.


RCCAO's statement on Throne Speech

The Residential and Civil Construction Alliance of Ontario (RCCAO) is pleased that today’s Throne Speech laid out four foundations to get Canada back on track. “The metaphor used in the speech is particularly appealing to us as that is literally what our industry does every day,” says RCCAO executive director Andy Manahan (right). “The construction sector is a main driver of the economy and will lay the foundation for a robust economic recovery.” RCCAO views it as a positive step that infrastructure and housing were highlighted in the speech. The government indicated it will make substantial investments in housing for Canadians and enhance the first-time homebuyer program. The government also intends to invest in all types of infrastructure, including public transit, energy-efficient retrofits, and affordable housing. more ...


Canada Extends Wage Subsidy and Signals Tax Plans

Certain employers may now be able to receive the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) into 2021. In the Speech from the Throne on September 23, 2020, the government outlined some of its tax and economic priorities in the wake of COVID-19, and pledged to continue certain emergency support programs for individuals and businesses affected by the pandemic, including the CEWS. In the speech, the government said that in addition to extending these programs, it is focused on measures to create jobs, invest in health and child care and address climate change, among other priorities. more ...


A Majority Of Canadians Support An Economic Recovery That Includes Canadian Oil And Natural Gas

The Economy Is Seen As The Most Important Issue For Government To Address

A new national poll of 4,038 Canadians conducted across Canada by Ipsos on behalf of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) finds strong agreement that Canada’s oil and natural gas industry must be part of the economic recovery from the COVID-19 crisis. Canadians see the country’s economic recovery as the top issue (44%) the federal government should focus on in the upcoming Speech from the Throne, which kicks off a new session of Parliament later in September. Economic recovery was followed by health care – including COVID-19 (36%), and ensuring we can produce what we need in Canada (29%). Deficit reduction was ranked as the fourth top priority for Canadians (20%), and a reduction in personal taxes rounded out the “top five” at 17%. Of the top five priorities for Canadians all were related to economic issues except health care. Canadians were given a list of possible Speech from the Throne priorities and were asked to pick their top three. As a result, totals exceed 100%. more ...


Further Unfunded, Ongoing Spending Unsustainable for Ottawa says Fiscal and Tax Working Group

The COVID-19 crisis has left Ottawa’s finances vulnerable to significant downside risks, meaning little room for initiatives without tax increases across the board, says a new report from a C.D. Howe Institute Working Group. The Institute’s Fiscal and Tax Working Group, co-chaired by John Manley, former federal minister of finance; and Janice MacKinnon, former minister of finance of Saskatchewan, debated the question of whether the federal government’s fiscal trajectory is sustainable, given already announced plans. The discussion took place at the group’s second meeting on Thursday, September 17, 2020. more ...


Seneca joins collaborative national network supporting student mobility

ARUCC creates Canada’s official credential wallet and trusted document exchange network

Seneca has taken the next steps in its digital adoption strategy by joining Canada’s official credential wallet and national network led by the Association of Registrars of the Universities and Colleges of Canada (ARUCC). Called the ARUCC National Network, it provides students with the ability to access and share official, digitized transcripts, credentials, badges and microcredentials — anytime and anywhere. Pioneered by ARUCC and powered by Digitary’s global digital credentials platform, the Network is unique in scope and moves Canadian higher education to the forefront of innovation by providing a trusted credential engine built for learners. By joining, Seneca will unite with other Canadian colleges and universities that have collaborated to create this national credential wallet and trusted, online document exchange platform. more ...


New diabetes device monitors blood using radar and AI, not painful pricks

New technology can quickly and accurately monitor glucose levels in people with diabetes without painful finger pricks to draw blood. A palm-sized device developed by researchers at the University of Waterloo uses radar and artificial intelligence (AI) to non-invasively read blood inside the human body. “The key advantage is simply no pricking,” said George Shaker (right), an engineering professor at Waterloo. “That is extremely important for a lot of people, especially elderly people with very sensitive skin and children who require multiple tests throughout the day.” Researchers test a prototype of a new diabetes device for prick-free glucose monitoring. About the same size as existing glucometers, the rectangular device works by sending radio waves through the skin and into blood vessels when users place the tip of their finger on a touchpad. more ...


FreshBooks acquires Mexico-Based E-Invoicing Company Facturama, Further Expanding Its International Presence

FreshBooks, the #2 small business accounting software in America, with paying customers in 100+ countries, announced its acquisition of Facturama. Based in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, Facturama helps 19,000+ self-employed professionals, small businesses and startups maintain better control of their finances through electronic invoice management, reporting and other organizational services. The company is one of few software providers in the region that is currently compliant with Mexico’s advanced electronic invoicing and accounting regulations. Supported by FreshBooks, Facturama's service will allow for greater scaling capabilities in Mexico, where the small business market is significant and growing. The purchase amount has not been disclosed. “The Facturama team has built a great business helping Mexico-based small business owners succeed, and I’m excited to welcome the team and 19,000 entrepreneurs to the FreshBooks family,” said Mike McDerment (photo), CEO and Co-founder of FreshBooks. “It’s still more difficult than it should be to run your own business. In Mexico, 65 percent of small businesses do not survive past their second year, and it’s largely because of cash flow management issues. Combining Facturama's regional expertise with FreshBooks’ online payments and scaling expertise will accelerate our ability to better serve Mexico’s growing small business and startup market.” more ...

6 Minutes

Region raises emergency response time targets for sudden cardiac arrest

The Region of Waterloo’s emergency response time for sudden cardiac arrest calls improved significantly in 2019, which is why Paramedic Services will raise the target for 2021. Calls for sudden cardiac arrest, which now include Cambridge, Waterloo and Kitchener Fire Services data, show a response rate of six minutes or less nearly 75 percent of the time, significantly higher than the existing target of six minutes or less 50 percent of the time. The new target for sudden cardiac arrest will be six minutes or less 70 percent of the time. The Region’s 2021 Response Time Performance Plan will reflect this change.


Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists names new CEO

Cheryl Farrow brings more than 20 years of not-for-profit leadership to association

The Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists (OACETT) has appointed a new Chief Executive Officer with an extensive track record of executive leadership and team building. Cheryl Farrow brings more than 20 years of experience in not-for-profit management to OACETT, including governance transformation, amalgamation and credentialling. She began her new role on September 8, 2020. Farrow’s previous leadership roles include CEO of the Canadian Bar Association, President and CEO of the Supply Chain Management Association, Executive Director of the Canadian Grocery Human Resource Council, and President of the Ontario Tourism Education Corporation. more ...

Build Back Better

Rebuilding Cities to Generate 117 Million Jobs and $3 Trillion in Business Opportunity with Nature-Positive Strategy

Research shows that using nature-positive solutions can create more efficient, healthier and resilient cities while generating $3 trillion in business opportunities and creating 117 million new jobs

COVID-19 recovery packages that include infrastructure development will influence the relationship between cities, humans and nature for the next 30 to 50 years. With the built environment home to half the world’s population and making up 40% of global GDP, cities are an engine of global growth and crucial to the economic recovery. Research shows that nature-positive solutions can help cities rebuild in a healthier and more resilient way while creating opportunities for social and economic development. The World Economic Forum’s new Future of Nature and Business Report found that following a nature-positive pathway in the urban environment can create $3 trillion in business opportunity and 117 million jobs. more ...

Global Tourism

UNWTO Launches Comprehensive Tourism Recovery Tracker

As growing numbers of countries around the world ease restrictions on travel, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has launched a new Tourism Recovery Tracker to support global tourism. This represents the latest concrete action undertaken by the United Nations specialized agency as it leads the response of global tourism and guides recovery. The most comprehensive tourism dashboard to date, the Tracker is the result of a partnership between international organizations and the private sector. Available for free, it covers key tourism performance indicators by month, regions and subregions allowing for a real time comparison of the sector recovery across the world and industries. more ...

Climate Change

Leaders Pledge to Put Climate Change ‘Front and Centre’ of Post-COVID Recovery

Apple vice-president calls for rigorous accounting of carbon-offsetting to ensure companies deliver positive change rather than simply gaining the system

The UK Government pledged to put climate change at the heart of the global recovery from COVID-19. “We will use the COP26 presidency and our G7 presidency to champion a clean, inclusive and resilient global recovery and put climate change front and centre of the post-COVID debate,” said Lord Callanan, the UK’s Minister for Climate Change and Corporate Responsibility, in his address today to the World Economic Forum’s Sustainable Development Impact Summit. The minister challenged all business leaders to join the Race to Net Zero, launched by the UN and the UK government and the largest global alliance of companies and non-state actors committed to reach net zero by 2050 at the latest. The alliance counts almost 1,000 businesses, 38 investors, and nearly 500 cities and regions among its members, representing 53% of global GDP, $72 trillion in annual revenue and 23% of global emissions, he said. more ...


September 21-25, 2020

Celebrating the Essential Nature of Payroll

The Canadian Payroll Association Leverages Influence Marketing Strategy to Amplify the Collective Voice of Payroll Professionals and Celebrate the 26 th Annual National Payroll Week

The Canadian Payroll Association is taking a new approach to celebrating the many contributions of payroll to workers, businesses, communities and governments across Canada. Ahead of the 26 th annual National Payroll Week (September 21 – 25, 2020), the Association has launched the Powered by Payroll influence marketing campaign to amplify the voice of payroll professionals and celebrate the entire payroll community through a new online hub — . more ...

November 5 - 7, 2020

Board Governance Boot Camp

Capacity Canada presents our annual Manulife Board Governance BootCamp November 5, 6 & 7, 2020 delivered virtually for the first time. This BootCamp delivers practical governance training to non-profit Boards and equips them with relevant action plans that will deliver a noticeable performance improvement in their boardrooms. go to ...


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