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Health Canada testing Banana Boat sunscreen products as complaints mount

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Wednesday, Jul 5th, 2017

Rebecca Cannon says her daughter, Kyla, received second-degree burns after Banana Boat sunscreen was applied on her skin. FACEBOOK/Rebecca Canon
A British Columbia mother says her 12-year-old son suffered burn injuries after using a Banana Boat sunscreen product.

Patrizia Fitch, of Victoria, said Tuesday that her son Daniel was left with severe blisters after wearing a Banana Boat sunscreen on a school trip to a beach in the city.

She says he applied the sunscreen four times and the blisters kept getting worse.

Fitch says she’s reported her son’s injuries to Health Canada.

A Health Canada spokeswoman says the number of complaints about the company’s products has shot up to 139 in the past two months.

Renelle Briand says the agency has reviewed test results provided by the company and has not identified any problems.

She says the government is now conducting its own testing of the sunscreens.

The issue received public attention in May when three mothers complained that their babies suffered burn injuries after using Banana Boat sunscreen.

Banana Boat Canada has previously said that its products are safe and have been approved by Health Canada.


Health Canada investigating reports of babies burned by Banana Boat sunscreen

Stolen service dog Princess found, returned to owner

NEWS STAFF | posted Tuesday, Jul 4th, 2017


A stolen service dog has been found and returned to its owner.

Princess, the six-year-old Teacup Chihuahua, was brought into 14 Division after being found wandering by someone late Sunday afternoon in the King Street and Strachan Avenue area.

“I’m so thankful to the people who found her,” an emotional Ashley-Victoria Martineau told CityNews after picking up Princess from the police station. “I would be heartbroken if something happened to her.

Martineau says police told her charges could eventually be laid against a couple of people in connection with the theft.

Martineau says she went into a McDonald’s in the Bloor Street West and Ossington Avenue area around 2 a.m. Sunday morning to get a coffee after watching the Canada Day fireworks. While inside, Martineau said someone unclipped her dog from its harness and stole her.

“(I) hollered outside. Didn’t hear her. Went inside to check with people. They didn’t really see anything,” she explained. “I called Toronto police. I explained that she was a service animal for my mental health.”

Martineau said she suffers from PTSD and depression and Princess helps her emotionally and physically deal with stress, as well as tremors in her hands.

Upper, middle and low-income Canadians worried about housing prices: poll

JORDAN PRESS, THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Tuesday, Jul 4th, 2017

A  “sold over asking” sign sits in front of a detached house with an artificial grass front lawn, Toronto, Ont., Feb. 7, 2016. The home is located in the city’s North Riverdale neighbourhood. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Rachel Verbin
A “sold over asking” sign sits in front of a detached house with an artificial grass front lawn in Toronto . THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Rachel Verbin.
OTTAWA – Feel like a house in your city is unaffordable? Apparently, you’re not alone.

A new poll suggests that just over two in five Canadians believe housing in this country is not affordable for them, a finding that cuts almost evenly across income levels.

The poll by EKOS Research appears even more bleak in some of Canada’s hottest housing markets, where only a small sliver of respondents said they believe homes are affordable.

The data closely lines up with more formal benchmarks the federal government uses to measure affordability, as well as other data about the cost of housing, whether purchased or rented.

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The Trudeau government has promised a national housing strategy to help Canadians find and afford suitable housing, part of a larger strategy to reduce poverty. But the poll suggests the government is also dealing with public fears about affordability.

“It’s a deeply troubling finding that in certain portions of Canada, either geographically or societally, that this is a crisis level,” said Frank Graves, president of EKOS Research.

The poll found about half of respondents who consider themselves poor or working class believe that the cost of local housing is beyond their means. The rate was 38 per cent and 37 per cent, respectively, with respondents who consider themselves middle or upper class.

Looking at cities, only six per cent of respondents in Toronto and two per cent in Vancouver said they believe housing was affordable. In Calgary, the number was 11 per cent; in Montreal, 22 per cent.

The results of the telephone poll of 5,658 Canadians, conducted between June 1 and 19, are considered accurate to within 1.3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

The federal government hopes to halve the number of the hardest-to-help homeless, lifting tens of thousands out of “core housing need” — meaning they spend more than one-third of their before-tax income on housing that may be substandard or doesn’t meet their needs.

The Liberal government believes the biggest impact could be on renters who are stretched financially in many of Canada’s biggest cities.

Research from the University of Calgary’s school of public policy finds that affordability crunch is most acute in Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto, where a low-income family can spend upwards of half their income on the lowest-priced apartments.

Different situations in different cities make crafting a national housing strategy a challenge, because it must account for regional variations in incomes and costs, the school says in its June research note.

Municipal leaders are asking the government to prioritize federal spending on repair existing and construct new affordable housing units to deal with chronic shortages and deepening poverty in Canada. The Federation of Canadian Municipalities is also recommending the government provide direct housing support newcomers to Canada and provide more help for indigenous peoples living in urban centres.

The recommendations are part of a submission to the Liberals’ anti-poverty strategy consultations, which the FCM is making public Monday.

Man dies after falling from Sea-Doo into Lake Ontario

NEWS STAFF | posted Tuesday, Jul 4th, 2017

A Hamilton police cruiser is seen in an undated file photo. CITYNEWS
A man is dead after falling out of a boat in Lake Ontario.

Hamilton police say the 51-year-old man was on a Sea-Doo jet boat with two children and another man just after 4 p.m. on Sunday.

According to CHCH, the man fell into the water when the jet boat made a short turn in choppy water near the Burlington Lift Bridge.

Police said the man was found in the water a short distance away from the vessel, clinging to a life preserver. When the unresponsive man was pulled from the water he had no vital signs.

He was rushed to hospital but could not be resuscitated.

His name will not be released at this time, as his family has asked for privacy.

Police said the two children and the other man on the boat were rescued and did not suffer any injuries.

Hamilton Police would like to remind all recreational boaters to always have available the safety equipment required by law and to please be aware of the weather and water conditions before setting out.

Drake surprises Canada 150 crowd at Nathan Phillips Square

NEWS STAFF | posted Tuesday, Jul 4th, 2017

Drake made a surprise appearance at Nathan Phillips Square on July 2, 2017, as part of Canada 150 celebrations. INSTAGRAM/ChampagnePapi
The day after Canada Day, Drake hit the stage for a surprise appearance at Toronto’s Nathan Phillips Square.

The Sunday night concert was on part of City Hall’s Canada 150 event, day three of the four-day Canada Days music festival. dvsn, Majid Jordan and Roy Woods, all of whom are artists on Drake’s OVOSounds label, were scheduled to perform, and brought Drake out.

680 NEWS reporter Momin Qureshi was there, and tweeted a photo of the event.

Drake posted about the event on Instagram, including a photo of himself and friends watching the fireworks. For the show, he wore a shirt with the Rolling Stones ‘mouth’ logo, with a Canadian flag on the tongue.

The City of Toronto also released photos of Drake performing. Those photos, and other tweets about the event, can be seen below.

Drake made a surprise appearance at Nathan Phillips Square on July 2, 2017, as part of Canada 150 celebrations. CITY OF TORONTO

Drake made a surprise appearance at Nathan Phillips Square on July 2, 2017, as part of Canada 150 celebrations. CITY OF TORONTO

North Korea claims it tested first intercontinental missile


This image made from video of a news bulletin aired by North Korea’s KRT on July 4, 2017, shows what was said to be the launch of a Hwasong-14 intercontinental ballistic missile, ICBM, in North Korea’s northwest. Independent journalists were not given access to cover the event depicted in this photo. (KRT via AP video)
North Korea on Tuesday claimed it successfully test-launched its first intercontinental ballistic missile, a potential game-changing development in what may be the world’s most dangerous nuclear standoff and, if true, a direct rebuke to U.S. President Donald Trump’s earlier declaration that such a test “won’t happen!”

In typically heated rhetoric, North Korea’s Academy of Defence Science said the test of an ICBM – the Hwasong-14 – marked the “final step” in creating a “confident and powerful nuclear state that can strike anywhere on Earth.”

Unless outsiders retrieve parts of the missile, it will be difficult to confirm many details. North Korea’s weapons program is perhaps the most closely held state secret in one of the world’s most suspicious nations. U.S., South Korean and Japanese officials earlier assessed that the North fired an intermediate-range missile into waters near Japan.

Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga declined to comment on whether Japan thinks it was an ICBM, and South Korea’s Defence Ministry said it was analyzing whether the North’s statement was accurate.

The launch appeared to be North Korea’s most successful missile test yet; a U.S. scientist examining the height and distance said the missile could potentially be powerful enough to reach Alaska.

North Korea has previously launched satellites in what critics said were disguised tests of its long-range missile technology. A test-launch of an ICBM, however, would be a major step in developing nuclear-armed missiles that could reach anywhere in the United States.

The launch sends a political warning to Washington and its chief Asian allies, Seoul and Tokyo, while also allowing North Korean scientists a chance to perfect their still-incomplete nuclear missile program. It came on the eve of the U.S. Independence Day holiday, days after the first face-to-face meeting of the leaders of South Korea and the United States, and ahead of a global summit of the world’s richest economies.

Both outside and North Korean analyses of the missile’s height, distance and time in the air were roughly similar.

U.S., South Korean and Japanese officials say it flew for about 40 minutes and reached an altitude of 2,500 kilometres, which would be longer and higher than any similar North Korean test previously reported. It also covered a distance of about 930 kilometres.

North Korea said the missile flew as high as 2,802 kilometres before hitting a designated target in the ocean about 933 kilometres away from the launch site in the North’s northwest. It said the missile flew for about 39 minutes and was made at the highest possible angle.

Before North Korea’s announcement of an ICBM, South Korean analysts said it was likely that it was a retest of one of two intermediate-range missiles launched earlier this year.

One U.S. missile scientist, David Wright, estimated that the highly lofted missile, if the reported time and distance are correct, could have a possible maximum range of 6,700 kilometres, which could put Alaska in its range, if fired at a normal trajectory.

North Korea has a reliable arsenal of shorter-range missiles and is thought to have a small arsenal of atomic bombs, but is still trying to perfect its longer-range missiles. Some outside civilian experts believe the North has the technology to mount warheads on shorter-range Rodong and Scud missiles that can strike South Korea and Japan, two key U.S. allies where about 80,000 American troops are stationed. But it’s unclear if it has mastered the technology needed to build an atomic bomb that can fit on a long-range missile.

Soon after the morning launch, President Trump responded on Twitter: “North Korea has just launched another missile. Does this guy have anything better to do with his life? Hard to believe that South Korea and Japan will put up with this much longer. Perhaps China will put a heavy move on North Korea and end this nonsense once and for all!”

“This guy” presumably refers to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. China is North Korea’s economic lifeline and only major ally, and the Trump administration is pushing Beijing to do more to push the North toward disarmament.

After North Korea claimed earlier this year it was close to an ICBM test launch, Trump took to Twitter and said: “It won’t happen!”

The missile test could invite a new round of international sanctions, but North Korea is already one of the most sanctioned countries on Earth. U.N. Security Council resolutions ban it from engaging in any ballistic activities. Since late 2012, North Korea has placed two satellites into orbit with long-range rockets, each time triggering new U.N. sanctions and worldwide condemnation.

Related stories:

Death of U.S. student held in NKorea renews calls for help in case of detained Canadian

North Korea fires short-range ballistic missile off western Japan

North Korea says new long-range missile can carry heavy nuke

Last year, North Korea conducted its fourth and fifth atomic bomb tests and claimed a series of technical breakthroughs in its efforts to develop long-range nuclear missiles. The fifth nuclear test in September was the North’s most powerful atomic detonation to date.

In their meeting last week, South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Trump vowed to oppose North Korea’s development of atomic weapons.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe sharply criticized North Korea for the launch. “The latest launch clearly showed that the threat is growing, Abe said.

Abe, who talked by phone with Trump on Monday, said the two leaders plan to seek co-operation from world leaders when they attend a G-20 summit in Germany.

On May 14, North Korea launched a Hwasong-12 missile which its state media said flew as high as 2,111 kilometres and landed in a targeted area in the ocean about 787 kilometres from the launch site. On May 21, North Korea tested a Pukguksong-2, which travelled about 500 kilometres.

The Korean Peninsula has been divided since before the 1950-53 Korean War. Almost 30,000 U.S. troops are stationed in South Korea.

Since taking office on May 10, Moon has tried to improve strained ties with North Korea, but the North has continued its missile tests. North Korea says it needs nuclear weapons and powerful missiles to cope with what it calls rising U.S. military threats.

Since taking office after his dictator father Kim Jong Il’s death in late 2011, Kim Jong Un has overseen three nuclear weapons tests and a slew of missile tests. Regional disarmament talks on North Korea’s nuclear program have been deadlocked since 2009, when the North pulled out of the negotiations to protest international condemnation over a long-range rocket launch.

The Associated Press’ Mari Yamaguchi in Tokyo contributed to this story.

Woodbridge cafe partially collapses after explosion; man arrested

NEWS STAFF | posted Friday, Jun 30th, 2017


An explosion caused a Woodbridge cafe – one that was raided for illegal gaming last year – to partially collapse, sending bricks onto the street and burying a car.

A 33-year-old man is in custody.

The City of Vaughan has since told CityNews that the cafe does not have a valid municipal business licence.

When police arrived at the scene, they found the cafe in a partial state of collapse. They also confirmed that an explosion occurred. Police called Vaughan fire to the area and firefighters put out an oven fire inside the cafe.

Police also found an injured man nearby. He was arrested and then taken to hospital. His injuries are not life-threatening.

One of the cafe’s walls was blown out and fell onto a car. No one was in the car at the time.

The Ontario Fire Marshal has been called in and police are investigating.

“We do believe the fire [explosion] is suspicious,” Const. Andy Pattenden said.

At the scene, deputy fire chief Deryn Rizzi said the roof is unstable, so firefighters cannot do a full search of the building.

Vaughan Fire District Chief Grant Moffat said there are at least 10 businesses in the building. For the time being, no one is being allowed into the building.

Police are asking who was in the area at the time, or who may have surveillance and dashcam video at the time of the incident, to contact them.

Van driver facing charges after TTC bus crash in Etobicoke, injuring 8

NEWS STAFF | posted Friday, Jun 30th, 2017

A minivan and a TTC bus collided at The West Mall and Rathburn Road in Etobicoke on June 29, 2017. CITYNEWS/David Misener
At least eight people have been taken to hospital after a collision between a TTC bus and minivan near The West Mall and Rathburn Road in Etobicoke.

Emergency crews were called to the scene around 6 p.m. on Thursday. The area was closed off for hours while police investigated, and reopened around 11 p.m.

Paramedics said one person suffered serious head injuries. At least seven other people had minor injuries.

The driver of the van is facing charges, Toronto police said early on Friday morning, but did not say what those charges are.

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