Commuters are reflected in the windows of a Calgary C-Train on Wednesday, April 2, 2008. Some cities have increased police presence on public transit after a series of attacks. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Some cities have increased police presence on public transit after a series of attacks.
Here is a list of some of the high-profile acts of violence on buses, trains or around transit stops across the country in recent weeks.
April 13 — Edmonton police say they received a report that a 48-year-old man was stabbed in the back while he was drinking a coffee by himself at a bus stop in the city’s southeast at about 6 a.m. He was taken to hospital with serious injuries. Investigators believe the attack was random.
April 12 — A man was taken to hospital in life-threatening condition and two others were arrested after a shooting on a Calgary Transit bus in the city’s downtown. Officers were called around midday for reports of a fight on a city bus parked in front of the Central Library in the East Village neighbourhood.
April 11 — A teenager was fatally stabbed on a bus in the Vancouver area. Surrey RCMP said the stabbing happened just before 9:30 p.m., when the 17-year-old male victim and his attacker got into some sort of altercation while on the bus, not far from the King George SkyTrain station. A suspect has not been arrested.
April 1 — A man was taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries after having his throat slashed on a bus in Surrey, B.C. One man, who is now in custody, allegedly took out a knife and slashed the other across the throat before being arrested at the scene by transit police and Surrey RCMP. The victim is recovering at home.
March 28 — Calgary police say two women were stabbed at the Lions Park light rail transit station during an altercation with several people. Police have said the women involved knew each other. A 31-year-old woman was later charged with aggravated assault and for failure to comply with a court order.
March 25 — A 16-year-old boy was stabbed to death in an unprovoked attack inside a west-end Toronto subway station. A 22-year-old man of no fixed address was later arrested and charged with one count of first-degree murder, police said.
March 15 — Calgary police arrested a man and a woman believed to be responsible for multiple targeted violent attacks at the Anderson light rail transit station. The attacks dated back to Feb. 3 when a man allegedly pointed a shotgun at two people on the station’s platform. A month later, a woman was assaulted on the same platform by a woman who sprayed her with bear spray. Another man and a woman were assaulted later that same day by someone using nunchuks and bear spray in what was believed to be a targeted attack.
March 15 — Police responding to an early-morning disturbance at a light rail transit platform in downtown Calgary found a man and woman with stab wounds. They were transported to hospital in stable condition.
March 10 — An assault involving roughly a dozen youths took place on a Regina city transit bus. Officers say the suspects were no longer at the scene when they arrived and that a woman was treated for minor physical injuries in hospital.
Jan. 23 — Four 13-year-old boys were charged with assault after they allegedly attacked two uniformed Toronto Transit Commission employees who were on their way to work by bus. Police said there was an altercation between a group of boys on the bus before the alleged assaults.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 13, 2023.
Running Reins Ranch in Red Deer County picks up $250,000 grant from province
Running Reins Ranch partners with members of the local Indigenous community to set-up teepee accommodations and host regular cultural programming for guests.
Tourism investment fuels growth in rural Alberta
Alberta’s government continues to support regional tourism opportunities across the province, generating jobs and new tourism destinations for locals and visitors alike.
Ahead of World Tourism Day 2023, Minister of Tourism and Sport Joseph Schow visited Running Reins Ranch to see first-hand how tourism investment grants are making a difference in the lives of Albertans.
“Alberta’s government is proud to invest in growing visitor destinations like Running Reins Ranch that celebrate the richness and diversity of Alberta’s rural destinations and provide a sustainable tourism experience for visitors to enjoy.”
As part of the Tourism Investment Program, Running Reins Ranch received a $250,000 grant from Travel Alberta.
“Our investment will support the building of additional unique accommodations at the ranch that will triple their capacity, emphasize their year-round offerings and create five new full-time jobs. This investment in Running Reins Ranch is a perfect example of how Travel Alberta is driving tourism growth in rural communities across the province.”
Running Reins is located east of Innisfail, offering cabin and teepee accommodations and a wide range of outdoor activities for visitors looking to combine the beauty of the Prairies with farm experiences for a one-of-a-kind getaway.
Right to Left: Minister of Tourism and Sport Joseph Schow, Owners of Running Reins Ranch Terry and Janice Scott, and team member Grace Finlan.
“This funding is a game-changer for us and our business. We are excited to bring our vision to life and provide visitors with unforgettable experiences while supporting the economic growth of the surrounding community.”
Tourism is Alberta’s No. 1 service export sector. In 2019, Alberta welcomed 34.6 million visitors, generating $10.1 billion in expenditures and supporting more than 80,000 full-time jobs. The Tourism Investment Program is Travel Alberta’s commitment to investing $15 million annually with communities and operators to develop the province’s tourism sector. Developing Alberta’s rural and agri-tourism sector is an essential component of the government’s efforts to grow Alberta’s tourism economy to more than $20 billion by 2035.
- In 2022-23, Travel Alberta funded 166 projects across 73 communities – about 75 per cent of the projects and 70 per cent of the funding were in smaller urban and rural areas of the province.
- In December 2022, Alberta’s government released its Economic Development in Rural Alberta Plan, with supporting initiatives that demonstrate the government’s commitment to building healthy and prosperous communities across rural Alberta and Indigenous communities.
Company at centre of E. coli outbreak at Calgary daycares faces licensing charges
Alberta Health Minister Adriana LaGrange speaks to the media about an E. coli outbreak linked to multiple Calgary daycares in Calgary on Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
By Colette Derworiz in Calgary
The company that runs a commercial kitchen at the centre of an E. coli outbreak that has infected hundreds at numerous Calgary daycares has been charged with operating without a business licence.
The City of Calgary announced Wednesday that Fueling Minds Inc. and its two directors face a total of 12 charges under municipal business bylaws and face a total fine of up to $120,000.
The company declined to comment on the charges in an emailed statement Wednesday afternoon.
Meanwhile, Alberta chief medical officer Dr. Mark Joffe said the number of cases has plateaued at 351, and tests and interviews indicate the cause of the outbreak was meat loaf and vegan loaf.
He said there are also 37 confirmed secondary cases and four children remain in hospital.
Fueling Minds provided meals to six of its own daycares that were affected by the outbreak, which was declared Sept. 4, and also to five separate daycares.
The city alleges Fueling Minds did not have the proper licence to serve those other five.
Joffe said the investigation into the cause of the outbreak included interviews with hundreds of parents and daycare staffers and the testing of 44 food samples.
“We believe that meat loaf and vegan loaf meals that were served for lunch on Aug. 29 most likely contained the E. coli bacteria that led to these infections,” said Joffe.
“Unfortunately, neither of these items could be tested as they were either eaten or discarded before this outbreak was identified.
“While we now have a likely source, what we do not know exactly is what was contaminated or how.”
The company’s statement said the “exact source of the infections has not yet been identified” and it continues to work with Alberta Health Services on its ongoing investigation.
Joffe said the province is to hire a third party to verify its work and findings.
Premier Danielle Smith said former Calgary police chief Rick Hanson would lead a panel to investigate what went wrong and make recommendations on how to make commercially prepared food safer in daycares.
Smith said the panel does not have a set timeline, but she expects to hear from him monthly and would implement interim recommendations if necessary rather than wait for the final report.
“Mr. Hanson will be joined by Alberta parents, childcare operators, food service operators, and food safety and public health experts,” said Smith.
“The panel will be examining all aspects of this tragic situation, large and small, as well as taking a full broader look at the legislation and regulations that govern food safety in our province.”
Smith said she met with parents of affected children, and a policy change they suggested was posting kitchen health inspection reports in a daycare rather than just online.
Health Minister Adriana LaGrange and Searle Turton, minister for children and family services, are already reviewing food handling in commercial daycare kitchens.
The kitchen remains closed and in recent months has been flagged for numerous health violations, including food transportation concerns.
Diana Batten, the Opposition NDP critic for childcare and child and family services, said Wednesday’s developments were a good start to getting answers.
“This will really help some of the families I’m speaking with,” she told reporters.
“However, it brings up or illustrates there’s a lot of problems inside the system. We heard Premier Smith talk about how we should trust now that the system is safe. Why? We continue to identify more concerns.”
Batten said a panel isn’t going to help solve those problems.
“It’s just spending more money and, honestly, putting a Band-Aid on what is honestly a huge public health crisis.”
The province has promised parents affected by the closures in the original 11 daycares a one-time payment of $2,000 per child to cover off financial hardship. Those facilities were closed Sept. 4 but have since reopened.
Eight more daycares faced closures or partial closures in the days that followed as secondary cases were identified.
Smith said last week that the compensation program would only be available to parents of the 11 daycares at the root of the outbreak.
Turton, however, confirmed parents affected by the later closures would also be eligible for the one-time payments, and that was the plan all along.
“The program hasn’t expanded,” said Turton.
“It’s important to note that just more daycares since the original announcement have actually become eligible for those payments.”
— With files from Dean Bennett in Edmonton
This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Sept. 27, 2023.
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