Connect with us
[bsa_pro_ad_space id=12]

National

Inappropriate comments stem from outdated sense of humour: Manitoba politician

Published

on

If you like this, share it!




  • WINNIPEG — A Manitoba legislature member who was booted from the governing Progressive Conservative caucus over inappropriate remarks said Thursday he is not a sexual harasser, but later admitted some of his comments could be construed as harassment.

    Cliff Graydon, 72, described himself as a product of a bygone era as he answered questions for the first time since being ejected by the Tories last month.

    “People who know me best can verify I have never been accused of anything remotely resembling sexual harassment,” Graydon said at a news conference.

    “I admit I’m guilty of having of having a bad sense of humour and sincerely apologize to those who have been offended by my inconsiderate jokes. I have grown up in a different era and realize some people today are much more sensitive to inappropriate humour.”

    Graydon was kicked out of caucus last month after media reports he invited two junior staff members to sit on his lap and invited one to lick food off his face. Caucus chair Wayne Ewasko said Graydon had exhibited a “pattern of inappropriate behaviour,” but would not reveal details.

    Graydon said Thursday he has no memory of asking anyone to lick his face and feels the lap incidents were misreported.

    “I have never asked anyone to sit on my lap — that’s a media term. The comment was ‘You can sit on my knee or I can get you a chair’.”

    Graydon was asked whether he considers that statement harassment.

    “I didn’t at the time, no. But apparently — today — yes it is.”

    Graydon said his inappropriate actions never involved touching, but there may have been many more cases of verbal comments.

    “There could be many in my past. I have no idea, with my sense of humour.”

    Graydon said he will sit as an Independent and will not run for re-election in 2020.

    Premier Brian Pallister said Graydon has handled the situation with “grace.”

    “I can only say that I believe that he’s responded in a reasonable way and he’s apologized, that he’s taken any actions that he felt were necessary.” 

    Graydon was first elected in 2007 and represents the Emerson constituency — an area where asylum-seekers have been crossing the United States border on foot to gain entry into Canada.

    Graydon stirred up controversy last winter when he called the asylum-seekers “a drain on society.” He also retweeted other people’s posts that called Prime Minister Justin Trudeau a traitor, a scumbag and a disgrace.

    Graydon apologized at the time, deleted the tweets and agreed to undergo sensitivity training, the details of which were never made public.

    “I learned a lot from my sensitivity training,” Graydon said.

    “But like I said, I came from a different era and it does take time to change. You do slip sometimes.”

    Steve Lambert, The Canadian Press


    If you like this, share it!

    National

    Online real estate auctions try to shake up sales with novel approach

    Published

    on

    If you like this, share it!




  • An online auction for a luxury home in Abbotsford, B.C., is drawing attention for its novel approach, which some observers say has potential to inspire new sales even if it doesn’t have any notable impact on the housing landscape.

    Bidding opens Tuesday on the 12-bedroom, 10-bath restored train power station known as the “Sumas Powerhouse,” which was previously listed for $5 million and has an assessed value of $2.2 million on B.C. Assessment.

    It’s one of three properties in Canada listed on global firm Concierge Auction’s website. A news release says it’s targeting Chinese buyers and will be sold in co-operation with Re/Max.

    Scott Pate, a project sales manager with Concierge, said luxury real estate has been a buyers market for quite some time in both the United States and Canada and auctions are a way to give sellers more certainty.

    “We’ll bring the market to this sale instead of the normal way of selling real estate, which is putting it on the market and waiting for an offer, which could take years and years,” he said.

    “The market is motivated because there’s a fear of missing out. This auction is going to end on a certain day … so it creates a lot of interest.”

    Real estate auctions are typical in Australia and New Zealand, but the model is less common in Canada. 

    A real estate agent in Victoria tried the in-person auction approach in 2016 with a property in the city’s upscale Rockland neighbourhood, holding a public auction featuring a pianist playing a grand piano in the ballroom at the event.

    But local media reported that although 60 people filled the room, only one was an interested buyer so the auction was cancelled. In 2017, the B.C. Supreme Court accepted a $1.8-million offer for the historic mansion in foreclosure.

    Tom Davidoff, director of the University of British Columbia’s Centre for Urban Economics and Real Estate, said online auctions aren’t all that different from the way we buy and sell homes traditionally in Canada, especially in cases where there are multiple interested buyers and a bidding war.

    That could make it comfortable for Canadian buyers to transition to the model.

    “It certainly could be a direction the market could go. In segments where the market is slow today, people will try different approaches to move product, so it’s certainly possible,” he said.

    But beyond creating another way for potential buyers to bid, he said he doesn’t believe there will be an impact on the market in terms of housing prices or competition.

    “This will have no impact on the market overall,” Davidoff said.

    In Toronto, On the Block sells real estate both the traditional way and through its online auction platform but doesn’t focus on luxury sales.

    Co-founder Daniel Steinfeld said online auctions offer a way around some of the frustrations that come with silent bidding wars under the traditional system.

    As part of the company’s model, buyers must sign agreements to make the value of their bids public while their identities remain protected. Real estate board regulations otherwise prohibit real estate agents from disclosing the substance of competing bids.

    “Buyers, especially in the Toronto and Vancouver markets, have grown pretty frustrated with the blind bidding approach,” he said.

    The platform also allows the company to post more information than might be available through MLS listings, like copies of home inspections and agreements of purchase and sale, which makes it less likely for a sale to fall through.

    The most important factor in a successful real estate auction is the starting price, which can inspire competitive bids, Steinfeld said. So when identifying potential properties for auction, the company interviews the sellers to determine their objectives and market expectations.

    If the seller has unreasonable expectations about the market value of their property, it’s probably not the right fit for auction.

    Market conditions matter less, he said.

    “We have seen in both good and bad market conditions that it can work, it really just comes down to the appropriate pricing strategy,” Steinfeld said.

    Auction properties are typically first-time listings and the company sets a reserve price, which represents the minimum value at which the seller is obligated to sell.

    “Once bidding reaches that number, everyone knows for sure that property will sell,” he said.

    “Then everyone starts to bid quit a bit more because they know at that point that if they win, it’s theirs.”

     

    Amy Smart, The Canadian Press


    If you like this, share it!
    Continue Reading

    National

    A week on, vigil held for Christchurch victims in Prince Edward Island

    Published

    on

    If you like this, share it!




  • CHARLOTTETOWN — More than a week after the deadly shooting rampage at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, a vigil was held at the Charlottetown cenotaph in Prince Edward Island on Saturday to show solidarity with the victims.

    Sobia Ali-Faisal, a faculty member at the University of Prince Edward Island’s psychology department, said while the temperature was cold the atmosphere at the vigil was warm.

    “It was sombre, but the signs that people had were very, very supportive,” she said, adding that the hundreds of people who attended “really wanted to be there.”

    Ali-Faisal said it was particularly heartening to see support from outside the Muslim community.

    “It’s soothing because you can feel quite vulnerable after something like this happens,” she said.

    “It could happen here. You could be a target, and you just kind of become cautious and take a lot more precautions. So it’s nice when you see people come out and support you. It makes you feel safer.”

    Vigils can also be a starting point for challenging hate by allowing people of different faiths to connect, she added, but said it’s important to keep up the momentum they create.

    Shaukat Khan, the president of the Pakistan Canada Association in Vancouver, said it’s “amazing” to see Canadians standing with the Muslim community, adding that Canadians always come together in hard times and these vigils show that.

    There are a number of groups in British Columbia and other parts of the country meeting up and thinking of ways to sustain the dialogue following the attacks, he said.

    The gunman killed a total of 50 people at two mosques in Christchurch on March 15, in the nation’s worst terrorist attack.

    Australian national Brenton Tarrant, 28, has been charged with murder in the attacks and is scheduled to make his next court appearance on April 5.

    Alhadi Abusneena, the president of the Muslim Society of Prince Edward Island who was also at the Charlottetown vigil, echoed Ali-Faisal’s words.

    The people of Charlottetown and P.E.I. support the Muslim community and “we stand as one family,” he said.

    “I see in their eyes, I see the love and compassion,” he said.

    Such vigils show that in spite of the sorrow, people choose love over hatred, he said.

    Although the vigil on Saturday took place more than a week after the shooting, Abusneena said the timing is irrelevant since the victims’ families have to live with a lifetime of pain.

    —By Hina Alam in Vancouver, with files from The Associated Press

    The Canadian Press


    If you like this, share it!
    Continue Reading

    march, 2019

    fri8mar - 30aprmar 85:30 pmapr 30Real Estate Dinner Theatre5:30 pm - (april 30) 10:00 pm

    sat30mar - 31mar 3010:00 ammar 319th Annual Central Alberta Family Expo10:00 am - 5:00 pm (31)

    sat30mar1:00 pm- 4:00 pmMAGSaturday @ the MuseumMAGnificent Saturdays welcomes all ages and abilities to participate in a fun art project every week! 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

    Trending

    X