News for the unnewsed

Despite unanimous approval for new laws demanding photo identification in the House of Commons, Elections Canada is maintaining their position, saying it isn’t required. The current law allows a citizen to use either photo identification or two other pieces of identification. Individuals voting through mail do not need any identification.

Muslim and other women who wear veils that cover their faces for religious beliefs may encounter problems at the next election if they do not want to remove their headdresses. Chief electoral officer Marc Mayrand said it is not his duty to change the law and will allow women keep their faces covered if it is part of their beliefs as long as they provide alternative identification.



Oil money helps arts

The Banff Centre has recently received a $10 million donation from a Calgary oil business leader.

Chief executive of Pengrowth Energy Trust James Kinnear, an established philanthropist, has donated money to the Banff Centre in the past. It provides space for art-related conferences and educational purposes. This new donation will go towards the construction of The Kinnear Centre for Creativity and Innovation. Kinnear hoped the new space will help artists with their creative and leadership skills; skills also useful in the business environment.



Couple survives on Manitoban bugs

An American couple has been rescued after being lost in northern Manitoba for six days.

Eric and Julie Haugan planned on canoeing from The Pas to Churchill on the Churchill River when they took a wrong turn and went off-course. They were reported missing by an employee at the storage company where they left their vehicle when they did not return on the expected date. Eric Haugan researched edible vegetation before they left for the trip which allowed them to survive on water lilies, bugs and wild mushrooms. Civil Air Search and Rescue Association of Manitoba vice-president Kevin Choy said the Washington couple was hungry and tired when they were found, but still wanted to complete their journey.



Flooding claims more homes in India

Northeastern India is experiencing some of the worst flooding in history in the region after the third wave of heavy rainfall this year. Families were just returning to the area to rebuild their homes, destroyed by earlier floods. The state of Assam alone estimated approximately 2.5 million homeless and 12 people dead in this most recent bout. In total, about 50 people are dead and 12 million affected since the monsoon season began in Jun. Farmers face serious financial concerns because they had already reseeded after the initial flooding.



Massive bomb better for environment

In an attempt to regain international acknowledgment, Russia revealed its newest military achievement this past week. Speculations were made that this is in response along with President Vladimir Putin’s statements against American plans for a missile defence system. The “vacuum bomb” is said to be as powerful as a nuclear bomb and capable of annihilating everything in a 300 metre radius. Photos of the testing ground after the explosion displayed flattened homes and apartment complexes. Russian Deputy Armed Forces Chief of Staff, Alexander Rukshin pointed out that there is a positive feature to the vacuum bomb: it does not harm the environment as much as its nuclear counterpart.



Sexual assualt on two Ontario campuses

Two major universities in Ontario recently experienced high-security alerts. A Carleton University student was sexually assaulted Sep., 1, in a lab of the Steacie Building. Campus Security has responded by putting up posters with the assailant’s description around campus, working with local Ottawa Police and tripling their patrols. Two residence students at York University in Toronto underwent a similar experience Sep. 8 when two suspects walked into the building. After one failed attempt, they tried to assault another victim and break into more rooms, but became frightened and left campus. None of the suspects in either case have yet been identified, but police are still investigating.

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