Newfoundland ponies get new home in sanctuary near Hopeall

For the people who have worked to save the Newfoundland pony, a new sanctuary is a major victory.

The provincial department of Fisheries and Land Resources signed over 10 hectares of Crown land near Hopeall on Thursday to the Newfoundland Pony Society, providing a home and breeding ground for the animals.

We bought all the ponies from the people that were putting them on the trucks that we could buy.– Cliff George

It’s a long way for the breed, which pony owner Cliff George remembers as a hearty work animal, needed in its heyday for survival on the island. He watched their numbers dwindle to the point that companies started buying the ponies for their meat — so he had to do something.

“Jeez, we bought all the ponies from the people that were putting them on the trucks that we could buy,” he said.

Others had more extreme suggestions, such as slashing the tires on the meat trucks.

Measles warning issued in Vancouver following possible exposure

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) has issued a warning about a possible measles exposure after a person with the disease attended a festival and multiple locations across the city.

“Measles is highly infectious, is spread through the air, and people who are not fully immunized against measles or who have never had the disease are at risk of contracting it,” said Tiffany Akins with VCH.

RELATED: Measles threat in Vancouver

Symptoms of measles include fever, cough, runny nose, and red eyes, followed a few days later by a rash that starts on the face and spreads to the chest.

If you were at any of the locations listed below and have not been immunized with two doses of a measles vaccine nor have had measles before, you should contact a doctor immediately.

  • Skookum Festival, Stanley Park (Sept. 8 between 5 p.m. and 1 a.m.)
  • Aquabus from Olympic Village to Hornby Street (Sept. 8 around 3 p.m.)
  • Canada Line SkyTrain from Vancouver City Centre to Broadway City Hall (Sept. 8 between 11 pm. and 1 a.m.)
  • Outdoor Community Block Party (Sept. 9 between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.)
  • Main Street bus from Terminal Station to Broadway (Sept. 9 between 3 pm. and 5 p.m.)
  • Noodlebox Mount Pleasant (Sept. 11 between 12 p.m. and 6 p.m.)


“Most people in B.C. are immune to measles because they’ve had two doses of the vaccine or they’ve had the illness in the past,” she said. “But, if you were born between 1970 and 1994, or you grew up outside of B.C., you may have received only one dose of the vaccine and so you would require a second dose to be fully protected.”

Latvia: Most residents not happy with government’s performance, economic situation

RIGA – Although Maris Kucinskis’ (Greens/Farmers) government has been praising itself for Latvia’s swift economic growth, residents are not too happy about the current economic situation in Latvia, according to the Latvian Barometer study that SKDS sociological research center carried out in August.

According to SKDS head Arnis Kaktins, only 5 percent of respondents said they considered the economic situation in Latvia good. 46 percent said it was mediocre, while 46 percent believe it to be bad, including 10 percent who said that the economic situation was awful. These figures have returned to the levels recorded in 2015 after a slight dip in 2016 and 2017.

Only 29 percent of respondents agreed that Latvia was overall on the right track, while 53 percent said this was not so. The best results were observed in July 2015, when 33 percent said that Latvia was on the right track and 43 percent said it was not.

According to the latest Latvian Barometer, only 22 percent of residents are satisfied with the government’s performance, while 73 percent are not satisfied. Not a lot has changed since Kucinskis took office, and it appears that residents’ opinion about the government’s work will be the same when a new prime minister is appointed.

Likewise, not many residents believe that the economic situation in Latvia is improving – just 16 percent of respondents said so. 48 percent think that the economic situation is not changing, and 26 percent believe it is getting worse, added Kaktins.

When asked to evaluate their families’ financial situation, 13 percent of respondents said it was good, 58 percent – average, and 28 percent said it was bad.

18 percent of residents believe that their financial situation will improve in the next twelve months, 57 percent believe it will not change and 10 percent say it will deteriorate.

Ford orders MPPs to return for rare Saturday session to pass Bill 31

The Ontario legislature will be in session this weekend in an effort to expedite the passage of Bill 31.

Premier Doug Ford has ordered Conservative MPPs to return to Queens Park for a rare Saturday session as they attempt to speed passage of the bill which cuts the size of Toronto City Council in half.

The City of Toronto official responsible for running Toronto’s Oct. 22 election said on Thursday that the battle between the province and the city is affecting her ability to ensure fairness in the vote, regardless of whether it involves 47 or 25 wards.

“We have hit a tipping point,” said Ulli Watkiss. “Both scenarios are becoming virtually impossible for us to carry out.”

Four Belgian Political Parties Call for Banning of Pro-Sharia Islamist Party

Four political parties are pushing forward laws that could prohibit the pro-sharia Partij Islam ahead of Belgium’s upcoming municipal elections.

The Independent Federal Democrat Party (DEFI), the right-wing Reform Movement (MR), the Humanist Democratic Centre (CDH), and the Socialist Party (PS) have announced a proposal to ban parties “whose aim is to threaten public liberties”, which may include the Islamist party, Le Point reports.

The party gained notoriety earlier this year after its founder, Anderlecht municipal councillor Redouane Ahrouch, declared: “Our goal is a one hundred percent Islamic state.”

He was later fired from his job as a bus driver for his comments which included suggesting that buses in Belgium should be segregated by gender to prevent women being sexually harassed.

Drunk mother ‘crashed car with toddler in back’

A mother-of-one was found slumped drunk over the wheel of her crashed car with an open can beside her and her toddler crying and sweating in the back seat, a court heard.

Investigating gardaí at the scene in west Dublin found the accused woman (34) smelling of alcohol and slurring her speech while her two-year-old child was “highly distressed”.

The woman tested more than four times the drink-driving limit.

She is facing jury trial after Judge David McHugh decided that the case was too serious to be dealt with at district court level. He adjourned the case at Blanchardstown District Court.

The accused is charged with being drunk in charge of a child under the age of seven, as well as being drunk in charge of a vehicle. She has not yet entered pleas.

The offences are alleged to have happened at Nangor Road, Clondalkin, at 3.30pm on June 24 last.

Garda Ciaran Murray said he was on patrol when he saw a Seat Leon at the side of the road. It appeared to be crashed and there was smoke coming from the engine, he said.

He found the accused slouched over the steering wheel with an open “alcoholic beverage can” beside her.

Her speech was slurred when she was spoken to and there was a smell of alcohol coming from her, he said.

There was a two-year-old child in the back seat, highly distressed.

The accused was brought to a west Dublin garda station where a blood sample she provided had a reading of 219mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood.

Judge McHugh refused jurisdiction and adjourned the case for the DPP “to consider the situation”.

Defence solicitor Valerie Buckley applied for free legal aid and the judge said he would “revisit” the issue of legal aid on another date.

Irish Independent