Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Protests hit border crossings

A week of native protests that temporarily closed several Canada-U.S. border crossings and railway lines escalated with a rally on Parliament Hill.

Hundreds of protesters marched and blocked the entrance to Prime Minister Stephen Harper's office before his meeting Friday with First Nations' leaders.

Protesters stopped traffic for several hours at border bridges in Cornwall, Sarnia, Fort Erie and Queenston, Ontario, as well as Surrey, British Columbia.

They also blocked a Canadian National rail line in Sarnia and the main line between Toronto-Ottawa-Montreal for several hours near Belleville, disrupting 1,000 VIA Rail passengers and freight traffic.

Protesters say government bills will encroach on their historic treaty rights and the environmental protection of native land. "We shared our lands all these years and we never got anything from it — all the benefits are going to Canadian citizens," Ontario chief Theresa Spence said. Her comments followed the release of a federal audit showing a "lack of documentation" for $104 million given to aid the reserve from 2005 to 2011.

Weather extremes coast to coast

They're having a "heat wave" in southern Ontario, freezing in British Columbia and digging out in Newfoundland and the Prairies.

A blizzard lashed Newfoundland with about 2 feet of snow while up to a foot covered the area from Alberta to Saskatchewan on Friday. Toronto and southern Ontario have had record-breaking high temperatures the past few days, reaching into the 50s this weekend and melting what little snow had fallen.

There's an "extreme-weather alert" in Metro Vancouver throughout this weekend with homeless shelters adding beds and heated facilities as temperatures plunged into the mid 20s at night.

News in brief

• A Toronto man and his wife who spent winters in Florida have been found murdered in their townhouse in Hallandale. Police said the bodies of David Pichosky, 71, and Rochelle Wise, 66, were found by a neighbor after they failed to show up for lunch.

• An anti-corruption unit of 20 investigators has been established in Montreal with "far-reaching powers." Mayor Michael Applebaum said the office will be "autonomous and independent" and complement Quebec's own unit. The action follows investigations into widespread corruption in the construction industry that led to the resignations of several mayors, including Gerald Tremblay of Montreal and Laval's Gilles Vaillancourt.

Facts and figures

The Canadian dollar is higher at $1.0168 in U.S. funds while the U.S. dollar returns 98.34 cents Canadian, before bank exchange fees.

The Bank of Canada's key interest rate is steady at 1 percent while the prime-lending rate is 3 percent. Stock markets are higher, with the Toronto exchange index at 12,564 points and the TSX Venture index at 1,239 points.

Lotto 6-49: (Jan. 9) 14, 17, 33, 34, 43 and 44; bonus 5. (Jan. 5) 24, 29, 34, 36, 41 and 42; bonus 45. Lotto Max: (Jan. 4) 3, 6, 16, 23, 27, 28 and 34; bonus 22.

Regional briefs

• Calgary hospitals have postponed surgeries due to severe outbreaks of flu and noroviruses. Seasonal viruses are up about 20 percent over normal years in the city and throughout Alberta. Across Canada, there is a similar trend with more flu cases and lingering colds reported this winter.

• Parents were thrown into disarray when a planned one-day strike by elementary teachers was ruled illegal and schools remained open. The Ontario Labor Relations Board ruled at 4 a.m. Friday the "day of protest" would violate their contract and they could be heavily fined. The teachers are upset over a two-year freeze in their pay and benefit cuts.

Jim Fox can be reached at [email protected]

Protests hit border crossings 01/12/13 [Last modified: Saturday, January 12, 2013 7:53pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Tampa Bay small businesses give Tampa B+ for regulatory climate

    Corporate

    In a recent survey about small business sentiments toward state and local government policies that affect them, Tampa Bay ranked at No. 25 out of 80 — a B+ overall.

    Tampa Bay ranked No. 25 out of 80 in a recent survey about how small business owners feel about state and local government policies that affect them. | [Times file photo]
  2. Dirk Koetter to Bucs: Take your complaints to someone who can help

    Bucs

    TAMPA — It was just another day of aching bellies at One Save Face.

    Dirk Koetter: “All of our issues are self-inflicted right now.”
  3. Seminole Heights murders: fear and warnings, but no answers

    Crime

    TAMPA — Interim Tampa police Chief Brian Dugan elicited loud gasps from the crowd of about 400 who showed up at Edison Elementary School on Monday night to learn more about the string of unsolved killings that have left the southeast Seminole Heights neighborhood gripped by fear.

    Kimberly Overman, left, comforts Angelique Dupree, center, as she spoke about the death of her nephew Benjamin Mitchell, 22, last week in Seminole Heights. The Tampa Police Department held a town hall meeting Monday night where concerned residents hoped to learn more about the investigation into the three shooting deaths over 11 days in southeast Seminole Heights. But police could give the crowd at Edison Elementary School few answers. [OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times]
  4. Juvenile justice reform seen as help for teen car theft problem

    Crime

    ST. PETERSBURG — One of Tampa Bay's largest religious organizations has decided to make reforming the juvenile justice system one of its top priorities for next year.

    One of Tampa Bay's largest religious organizations, Faith & Action for Strength Together (FAST), voted Monday night to make reforming the juvenile justice system one of its top priorities for next year. FAST believes civil citations could help Pinellas County?€™s teen car theft epidemic by keeping children out of the juvenile justice system for minor offenses. [ZACHARY T. SAMPSON  |  Times]
  5. U.S. general lays out Niger attack details; questions remain (w/video)

    War

    WASHINGTON — The U.S. Special Forces unit ambushed by Islamic militants in Niger didn't call for help until an hour into their first contact with the enemy, the top U.S. general said Monday, as he tried to clear up some of the murky details of the assault that killed four American troops and has triggered a nasty …

    Gen. Joseph Dunford said much is still unclear about the ambush.