Sunday, June 9, 2019

MMIWG Report, Climate Emergency, Cuba Blockade, Sudan & more -- The Week in News, Opinion and Videos June 2 - 9

This week's list of articles, news items, opinion pieces and videos that I see as a must if you are looking for a roundup that should be of interest to The Left Chapter readers.

This list covers the week of June 2 - 9.

1) Inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women issues final report with sweeping calls for change

John Paul Tasker · CBC News

After more than three years, dozens of community meetings and testimony from well over 2,000 Canadians, the missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls inquiry delivered its final report to the federal government at a ceremony in Gatineau, Que., today.

2) MMIWG cases continued at same rate even after national inquiry began, data shows

Jorge Barrera · CBC News

The rate of violence against Indigenous women and girls continued unabated during the mandate of the national inquiry created to investigate the root causes of the issue, according to figures in two separate databases provided to CBC News.

3) Conservative senators obstructing Indigenous rights bill

Dennis Gruending, Rabble

A group of Conservative senators are attempting to prevent an important piece of legislation from becoming law. Bill C-262 would ensure Canadian laws are consistent with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). This bill passed resoundingly the House of Commons on May 30 by a vote of 206-79, with only the Conservatives voting against. It was then sent to the Senate for ratification.

4) Former Harper-era minister doubles down on calling MMIWG inquiry report 'propagandist'

Jorge Barrera · CBC News

A former federal Aboriginal affairs minister under the Stephen Harper government is doubling down on his social media claim that the finding of "genocide" by the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and girls was "propagandist."

5) We fact-checked a viral claim about who's killing MMIWG. It was wrong.

Emma McIntosh, The National Observer 

After the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women released its final report this week, you may have seen a statistic claiming Indigenous men killed 70 per cent of murdered Indigenous women.

6) MMIWG findings and recommendations deserve full support

Communist Party of Canada

The report issued on June 3 by the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, Reclaiming Power and Place, is a stunning indictment of the genocidal record and policies of the Canadian state, and a powerful call for immediate action towards justice and equality. The Communist Party of Canada extends our solidarity to all those who courageously testified to the Inquiry over the last three years, and supports their demands for a genuine transformation of this society.

7) MMIWG report calls for public inquiry into allegations of racism, sexual assault by Manitoba Hydro workers

Sean Kavanagh · CBC News 

The final report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls says Manitoba needs to look much deeper at the impact of its hydroelectric projects — not behind closed doors, but through a public inquiry.

8) The long fight against sex discrimination in the Indian Act

Scott Neigh, Rabble

Lynn Gehl is an Algonquin Anishinaabe-kwe, an advocate and a writer  based in Peterborough, Ontario. Through her own decades-long court battle as well as her involvement in political mobilizations, she is a long-time participant in the fight against sex discrimination in the federal Indian Act. Scott Neigh interviews her about the history of that struggle and about the current "6(1)(a) All The Way" campaign that is putting pressure on the Trudeau government to remove the last elements of sex discrimination from the act.

9) 'Truths are piling up': The legal and moral imperatives behind the MMIWG's calls for justice

Chantelle Bellrichard · CBC News

In the wake of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Firls' final report, attention is now turning toward whether its 231 recommendations will be acted upon.

10) India weather: Temperature passes 50C Celsius in northern India

Temperatures passed 50 degrees Celsius in northern India as an unrelenting heatwave triggered warnings of water shortages and heatstroke.

11) How long could it take to clean up Alberta’s oilpatch? 2,800 years, Alberta Energy Regulator official warns

Emma McIntosh, Star Calgary & Mike De Souza, National Observer

It may take more than 2,800 years to clean up some of the decommissioned oil and gas wells currently dotting Alberta’s landscape, internal regulatory documents say.


Emma McIntosh, Star Calgary 

Alberta won’t stop burning. Neither will B.C., Ontario, Quebec, the Prairies, the territories, the Maritimes nor any of the 96 per cent of Canada’s communities near forest and grassland.

13) Climate crisis seriously damaging human health, report finds

Damian Carrington, The Guardian 

A report by experts from 27 national science academies has set out the widespread damage global heating is already causing to people’s health and the increasingly serious impacts expected in future.

14) Earth's carbon dioxide has jumped to the highest level in human history

Andrew Freedman, Axios 

The monthly peak amount of carbon dioxide in the Earth's atmosphere in 2019 jumped by a near-record amount to reach 414.8 parts per million (ppm) in May, which is the highest level in human history and likely the highest level in the past 3 million years.

15) Deforestation of Brazilian Amazon surges to record high

Jonathan Watts, The Guardian

Deforestation of the Brazilian Amazon surged last month to the highest May level since the current monitoring method began, prompting concerns that president Jair Bolsonaro is giving a free pass to illegal logging, farming and mining.

16) Accused of Plagiarism, Biden Campaign Admits Lifting 'Carbon Capture' Section of Climate Plan From Fossil Fuel-Backed Group

Jake Johnson, Commons Dreams

Sections of the former vice president's plan, noted an observant climate campaigner, "looked like the type of thing the coal industry, trade groups, and coal companies themselves say."

17) Extreme Flooding Across Midwest 'Exactly In Line' With Scientific Warnings of Climate Crisis: Experts

Julia Conley, Common Dreams

Farmers and residents across the Midwest are currently "living climate change," according to experts and scientists who are observing catastrophic flooding from one of the rainiest springs on record.

18) Finland pledges to become carbon neutral by 2035

Jon Henley, The Guardian 

Finland’s new left-leaning coalition government has pledged to make the country carbon neutral by 2035 as part of a policy programme that includes a major increase in public spending on welfare and infrastructure.

19) How Venezuelans Turn to Collective Action to Defy US Blockade


As the United States government intensifies its unilateral coercive measures against Venezuela, its people have turned to one another to push ahead and deal with economic sanctions. Local Colectivos (Collectives) and demonstrations of popular support have come to represent the unbreakable will of the Bolivarian Republic.

20) Conservative Witness for ‘Online Hate’ Hearing Was a Recent Guest on a White Nationalist’s YouTube Channel

Press Progress

One of the witnesses slated to testify at a hearing on “online hate” appeared on a white nationalist’s YouTube channel last month.


Vaidya Gullapalli, The Appeal

On Saturday, Injustice Watch and BuzzFeed News published an investigation into racist and violent social media posts by current and retired police officers. The article by Emily Hoerner and Rick Tulsky came out of a collaboration with the Plain View Project, which examined the Facebook accounts of police officers from eight departments across the county.

22) ‘The workers have chosen to fight’: Romanians strike for living wage

Patricia Gorky, Liberation News 

Workers across Romania are on strike. From Satu Mare in the northwest corner to Targoviste in the south, workers are demanding a living wage from the multinational corporations that reap mega-profits from the country.

23) Opposition parties submit bill to legalize same-sex marriage in Japan

Japan News

The bill by the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, Japanese Communist Party and others states that marriage would be established on the basis of marriage equality.

24)  Westminster shut down as tens of thousands protest against Trump

Ceren Sagir, The Morning Star

TENS of thousands of protesters shut down Westminster today to show their opposition to US President Donald Trump’s state visit.

25) West Virginia Senate passes sweeping education bill to ban teacher strikes

Elham Khatami, Think Progress

The West Virginia State Senate on Monday passed a sweeping education overhaul bill that would deem teacher strikes unlawful.

26) Dozens of Children Forced to Spend Up to 39 Hours in Hot Vans After Botched ICE Family Reunification

Democracy Now

Reports emerged this week of a botched attempt to reunite separated migrant families in Texas last July, which saw 37 migrant children spend up to 39 hours waiting in vans to see their parents. The 37 children were between 5 and 12 years old, and most of them spent at least 23 hours in a van during one of the hottest months of the year. Emails obtained by NBC News from BCFS Health and Human Services—the government contractor responsible for transporting the children—reveal a lack of proper planning by Immigration and Customs Enforcement and senior officials at the Department of Health and Human Services.

27) Man faces 20 years in prison for ‘giving migrants food, water and shelter’ near US border

Tom Embury-Dennis, The Independent

A man who says he gave food, water and shelter to migrants is facing up to 20 years in prison for “shielding” the men from US authorities.

28) Social Democrats win Danish general election, ousting right wing

Johannes Ledel, AFP

Denmark's opposition Social Democrats won Wednesday's general election after a campaign focused on concerns over the climate, welfare and immigration, as support plunged for the far right and surged for the main green party.

29) Let’s not leave the Soviet Union out of our D-Day history

John Wojcik, People's World 

On the 75th Anniversary of D-Day today, there are ceremonies honoring the American heroes who landed on the beaches of Normandy and defeated the Nazis. This is as it should be. What is not right, however, is that rarely are we honoring in our ceremonies the Soviet heroes who bore the brunt of the battles to defeat fascism in World War II.

30) Ten things they don't tell you about D-Day

Lindsey German, Counterfire 

As the commemorations of the 75 year anniversary of D-Day take place, Lindsey German reminds us of the truth about the end of the Second World War.

31) In Turkey, the right to freedom of association and unionisation remains under threat

Marion Fontenille, Equal Times

With their faces wrapped in traditional white scarves, they spend hours in silence at the gates of the country’s prisons: more than 45 days outside the Maltepe Prison in Istabul, and 25 outside Bakırköy on the outskirts of the city. In the last few months these peaceful gatherings have quickly turned into violent clashes with the police, the latest example of the increasing repression against any gatherings organised by Turkey’s associations and activists. “The police threaten to tear off their veils and tread on them. They began their sit-in in front of the prisons, without slogans,” says Sinan Zincir, a lawyer.

32) This playwright is trying to unionize Foodora — while writing about one of Canada's biggest strikes

Graham Isador · CBC Arts

Thomas McKechnie and I lived together for about a year. Several days a week, McKechnie would stumble home after a nine-hour shift as a Foodora bicycle courier, crash onto our couch and sprawl across the cushions. After an hour of pure exhaustion McKechnie — like clockwork — would open up his laptop and begin typing away at some script. He'd continue working on his writing late into the night. At around 2 in the morning he'd roll a cigarette, smoke on our porch then head off to bed. I rarely saw my roomate in the mornings. By the time I'd wake up he'd already be out the door on his bike, off to make a living delivering more food.

33) Two-tier minimum wage will cost older workers their jobs

Alexander Shevalier, Calgary Herald 

Premier Jason Kenney’s cavalier approach to the minimum wage has led to one of Bill 2’s most regressive changes in a piece of legislation filled with them.

34) ‘We must not accept homophobic and misogynist violence in our society,’ Corbyn says

The Morning Star

Melania Geymonat and her partner Chris were attacked in the early hours last week by four young men.

35) Even in 2019, lesbian couples are still made to fear for their lives by men

Eleanor Margolis, New Statesman 

It’s about seven in the evening and I’m on a London overground train with my girlfriend. Tired, I’m leaning on her shoulder and she’s stroking my head. On a scale of one to ten, one being looking lovingly at each other and ten being sixty-nining in the middle of Leicester Square, this level of PDA is probably a 2.5. 

36) Argentina's women protest for legal abortion, against violence

France 24

Thousands of Argentine protesters flooded the streets of Buenos Aires on Monday in a show of force for the abortion rights movement, and to denounce violence against women.

37) Lies pave the way for anti-abortion laws. To defeat the laws we must fight the lies

Rebecca Solnit, The Guardian 

A wave of new laws banning and restricting abortion could not have been passed without misleading the public about what abortion actually is.

38) US abortion policy is 'extremist hate' and 'torture', says UN commissioner

Liz Ford, The Guardian 

The US policy on abortion is a form of extremist hate that amounts to the torture of women, the UN deputy high commissioner for human rights told the Guardian.

39) Biden campaign confirms he supports Hyde Amendment

Morgan Gstalter, The Hill

Former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign confirmed that he still supports a controversial ban prohibiting the use of federal funds for certain abortion services.

40) Honduras deploys security forces as doctors and teachers demand president's resignation

Nina Lakhani, The Guardian 

Honduran security forces with teargas and live bullets have been deployed to quell a wave of nationwide protests led by doctors and teachers demanding the resignation of the country’s president.

41) Honduras Gov't Backtracks on Neoliberal Laws Amid Large Strike


President of Honduras Juan Orlando Hernandez (JOH) announced Sunday that two decrees related to education and health will be repealed. The decrees have been rejected by the teachers and public sector doctors who are in an indefinite strike since Thursday.

42) Corbyn to drop social mobility as Labour goal in favour of opportunity for all

Heather Stewart, The Guardian 

Jeremy Corbyn is dropping the idea of social mobility as a goal for the next Labour government, saying he would instead create a “social justice commission” with the power to audit policy.

43) Canadian FM plays good cop to US, promising Cuba 'part to play' in Venezuelan democracy

RT News

Cuba will have a "part to play" in restoring democracy in Venezuela, the Canadian foreign minister – a supporter of the coup-minded US-backed opposition – has declared after meeting with her Cuban counterpart.

44) Canada must resume visa processing in Cuba

Communist Party of Canada 

The Communist Party of Canada denounces the decision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to cease the issuance of visas to Cubans to visit Canada from its embassy in Havana.

45) Cuba is not intimidated by measures adopted to reinforce the blockade


The Revolutionary Government of the Republic of Cuba repudiates, in the strongest terms, measures announced by the United States government on June 4, 2019, reinforcing the economic blockade imposed on Cuba for more than 60 years, at a cost to the Cuban economy that in 2018 exceeded 134 billion dollars at current prices, or 933 billion dollars, when considering the depreciation of the dollar as compared to the value of gold on the international market.As is known, this new escalation, effective June 5, further strengthens the stringent restrictions U.S. citizens face in order to travel to Cuba, and adds full prohibitions on travel by sea from the United States, of all types, and prohibits cruise ship stops in our country immediately.The objective continues to be pressuring the Cuban nation to make political concessions, by strangling the economy and causing damage at the population’s level. In this particular case, the measures also seek to prevent the people of the United States from learning about Cuba’s reality, and thus undermining the slanderous propaganda campaigns against our country that are fabricated on a daily basis.

46) UN Praises Cuba as Model for Sustainable Policies


Cuba is a world reference for its constant efforts to preserve and take care of the environment, and for prioritizing a model of sustainable development,  Consuelo Vidal-Bruce, resident coordinator of the United Nations' (U.N.) System in Cuba said on Wednesday during a visit to Santa Clara whilst celebrating World Environment Day.

47) Trump administration bans educational and recreational travel to Cuba


The Trump administration on Tuesday imposed major new travel restrictions on visits to Cuba by U.S. citizens, including a ban on many forms of educational and recreational travel.

48) French Police Crack Down on 30th 'Yellow Vest' Protest


French police violently clashed with protesters Saturday at the 30th consecutive weekend of "yellow vest" demonstrations, using tear gas and water cannons in the southern city of Montpellier.

49) 40 bodies pulled out of the Nile as bloodbath continues in Sudan

Steve Sweeney, The Morning Star

SUDANESE opposition groups pulled more than 40 bodies from the River Nile today as the country descended further into a bloodbath after the feared Janjaweed militia instigated a massacre.

50) Solidarity with the people’s struggle in Sudan

Communist Party of Canada 

Delegates to the Communist Party of Canada’s 39th Central Convention send greetings of solidarity to the people of Sudan, who are waging a massive struggle for better living standards, democracy and progressive social change.

51) Sudan: 'The people want a transition to a civilian government'

Susan Price & Osama Yousif, Green Left Weekly 

Green Left Weekly’s Susan Price spoke to Osama Yousif, a member of the Sydney Sudanese community, who has recently returned from visiting Sudan, about the events leading up to the massacre of more than 100 protesters in Khartoum on June 3.

52) Sudan security forces tear-gas protesters

BBC News

Sudanese security forces have fired tear gas and live ammunition to disperse protesters setting up barricades in Khartoum.

53) Yet Another Pro-Israel Circus in Canada’s Parliament

Dimitri Lascaris

Yesterday, Canada’s Parliament treated us to yet another, pathetic spectacle of bipartisan adoration for Israel’s apartheid regime.

54) Why Should Immigrants ‘Respect Our Borders’? The West Never Respected Theirs

Suketu Mehta, The New York Times

There is a lot of debate these days about whether the United States owes its African-American citizens reparations for slavery. It does. But there is a far bigger bill that the United States and Europe have run up: what they owe to other countries for their colonial adventures, for the wars they imposed on them, for the inequality they have built into the world order, for the excess carbon they have dumped into the atmosphere.

55) 10 Cruel and Unusual Ways Doug Ford Has Made Life Worse ‘For the People’ of Ontario Since Last Year’s Election

Press Progress

Premier Doug Ford campaigned under the slogan: ‘for the people'. But one year later, it’s ‘the people’ who are paying the price.

56) Province tables legislation to cap public sector wages

City News

The province of Ontario has tabled legislation to cap public sector wages at one per cent over the next three years.

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