Connect with us


Toronto vigil begins ‘healing process,’ as community remembers 8 men killed by Bruce McArthur




A community vigil will be held in Toronto on Sunday evening in memory of the eight men killed by Bruce McArthur.

The “Vigil for a Grieving Community” comes after McArthur was sentenced Friday to life in prison for the killings, which took place between 2010 and 2017.

“Tonight’s vigil will really mark, I believe, the beginning of the healing process,” said Rev. Jeff Rock, senior pastor at the Metropolitan Community Church of Toronto, where the vigil is being held in the city’s Riverdale neighbourhood at 7 p.m.

McArthur received a life sentence, with no chance of parole for 25 years, after pleading guilty to eight counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of Skandaraj Navaratnam, Andrew Kinsman, Selim Esen, Abdulbasir Faizi, Kirushna Kumar Kanagaratnam, Dean Lisowick, Soroush Mahmudi and Majeed Kayhan.

Nine candles will be lit at the vigil: One for each of the victims, as well as a candle for the many others affected by McArthur’s crimes.

Rev. Deana Dudley, who gave a victim impact statement on behalf of LGBTQ community at last week’s sentencing hearing, will speak at the event. Dudley is an assistant pastor at the church.

Serial killer Bruce McArthur sat silently as friends and family of the eight men he admitted to murdering read victim impact statements in a Toronto courthouse. (Pam Davies/CBC)

For members of Toronto’s LGBTQ community who found last week’s hearing difficult, Rock said it “feels like only now can we start to move forward. After these heinous crimes, it’s a feeling like our safety has been shattered.”

Sunday’s vigil will include Indigenous, Hindu and Muslim participation in recognition of the communities affected by McArthur’s murders, Rock said.

“We know that the perpetrator targeted people of South Asian and Middle Eastern decent, and that breaks our hearts,” he said.

Rock also said the city needs to do better to address racism and to ensure LGTBQ people are accepted in all communities. “This crime is a reminder that perhaps we aren’t as safe in our own city as we’d like,” he said.

“The commitment is to come together — people of different religious backgrounds, racial backgrounds, gender and gender identities, sexual backgrounds — and together commit to making our city safe, to speaking openly and honestly about sexuality so people don’t need to be closeted,” he said.

The Metropolitan Community Church of Toronto, which can accommodate up to 600 people, held its first vigil last year, after McArthur was first arrested.

Donations collected at Sunday’s vigil will be donated to the Alliance for South Asian AIDS Prevention.


Source link

قالب وردپرس


List of Tourist Attractions Open Now in Ottawa




With Ontario now in Step 3 of 2021 three-step plan for reopening, museums and other indoor attractions are allowed to reopen with capacity limited to not exceed 50 per cent capacity indoors and 75 per cent capacity outdoors.

Here is a list of Ottawa attractions you can visit starting July 16th.

Do remember to wear masks and buy tickets in advance.

Parliament Hill

Parliament’s Centre Block and Peace Tower are closed for renovation.

You can join for tours of the Senate of Canada Building (2 Rideau Street), House of Commons at West Block (111 Wellington Street) on Parliament Hill, and East Block at East Block (111 Wellington Street) on Parliament Hill.

When: Grounds open; guided tours of Parliament are suspended through the summer of 2021.
Where: 111 Wellington Street, Downtown Ottawa

Continue Reading


Ottawa performer leapfrogs from gymnastics to Broadway to TV




A new AppleTV+ series set in a magical town that’s stuck in a neverending 1940s musical includes a pair of Ottawa siblings in the cast. 

Warren Yang and his sister, Ericka Hunter, play two of the singing, dancing residents of the village portrayed in Schmigadoon!, a small-screen series that takes its cues from classic musicals like Brigadoon, Wizard of Oz and Sound of Music, and skewers them with the offbeat comedic mastery of Saturday Night Live. 

In fact, you’ll recognize many of the names from SNL, starting with executive producer Lorne Michaels, creator of the late-night, live-comedy sketch show. Schmigadoon! also stars SNL cast member Cecily Strong and comedian Keegan-Michael Key, who hosted SNL in May. They play a New York couple who get lost on a hike and stumble into a strange town where everyone sings and dances. 

For Yang, a relative newcomer to show-biz, the series marks his television debut. For Hunter, the younger of his two older sisters, it’s the latest in a career path that began with dance lessons as a child more than 30 years ago. She attended Canterbury High School, Ottawa’s arts-focused secondary school. 

“Her dream was always to perform,” said Yang, 34, in an interview. “But that was never the path I thought was an option for me.” 

While his sister studied dance, Yang did gymnastics. He was an elite gymnast throughout his youth, ultimately leaving Merivale High School at 16 to train in Montreal, finishing high school through correspondence courses. He was a member of the Canadian National Team and received a scholarship to study at Penn State, majoring in marketing. 

A few years after graduation, Yang was working at an advertising agency in Toronto when he got a call from a Manhattan number. To his astonishment, they asked if he would be interested in auditioning for a Broadway revival of Miss Saigon.

Continue Reading


COVID-19: uOttawa to require vaccination for students living in residence




Vaccination will be mandatory for students who want to live in residence at the University of Ottawa this year, with proof of vaccination and at least one dose required before move-in, or within two weeks of doing so if they can’t secure a shot before arriving.

Those who can’t receive a vaccine for “health-related reasons or other grounds protected under the Ontario Human Rights Code” will be able to submit a request for accommodation through the university’s housing portal, according to information on the university’s website.

Students with one dose living in residence will also have to receive their second dose “within the timeframe recommended by Ottawa Public Health.”

People who haven’t been granted an exemption and don’t get vaccinated or submit proof of having done so by the deadlines set out by the school will have their residence agreements terminated, uOttawa warns.

“Medical and health professionals are clear that vaccination is the most (effective) means of protecting people and those around them,” reads a statement provided to this newspaper by uOttawa’s director of strategic communications, Patrick Charette.

Article content

“It is precisely for this reason that the University of Ottawa is requiring all students living in residence for the 2021-2022 academic year to be fully vaccinated. The University recognizes that some students may require accommodations for a variety of reasons and will be treating exceptions appropriately.”

Faculty, staff and students are also strongly encouraged to get vaccinated, the statement notes.

“Ensuring a high vaccine coverage in all communities is critical to ensuring an ongoing decline in cases and ending the pandemic. This will be especially important with the return of students to post-secondary institutions in our region in the fall of 2021.”

Neither Carleton University nor Algonquin College is currently mandating vaccination for students living in residence, according to the websites for both schools. But uOttawa isn’t alone in its policy – Western University, Trent University, Durham College and Fanshawe College have all implemented similar requirements. Seneca College, in the GTA, is going even further, making vaccination mandatory for students and staff to come to campus, in-person, for the fall term.

Continue Reading