As the world continues to struggle to make sense of the recent acts of terrorism carried out in Paris and Beirut, increased pressure has been put on the newly-elected Liberal government and their ambitious plan to bring over 25,000 refugees by the end of the year.
While many Canadians continue to support the plan to settle those displaced by the ongoing conflict in Syria, there have been doubts raised over the relatively quick timeline. To their credit, the government appears to be listening, and is going forward with a robust screening process.
Please don’t let the uninformed and racist posts the are unfortunately likely clogging your Facebook page confuse you and cloud your judgement. It’s sad that so many people seem so deeply scared of widows and children, but that’s the world we live in. Make no mistake, Canada’s screening process is as robust as any other nation’s, with potential immigrants vetted through a three-step process before landing on our shores.
Almost all of the refugees set to come to Canada have already been identified and vetted by the United Nations for potential links to war crimes, militant groups and other criminal behaviour after living for several years in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan.
From that group, roughly one per cent move onto the next step, which offers resettlement and asylum in Canada and other like-minded countries. Priority from this group is given to, women and children, vulnerable citizens and those with relatives already living abroad in the country they’re destined for.
The third step has Canadian officials conduct personal interviews in the Middle East, with applicant’s names run through numerous security databases before ultimately being offered the opportunity to move to Canada.
This process will take time to complete, and the government shouldn’t let irrational fears or arbitrary deadlines alter its course.
To the Editor,
It was a very wonderful day at our 16th annual Operation Warm Hearts sale earlier this month. The community donated 580 coats to the sale and we raised $660 for the Loaves & Fishes Food Bank. We have sold 181 coats back to the community, and the rest were donated to various shelters in the surrounding communities in Durham and York Region.
I would like to thank Niko Pupella, who has been at my side for 16 years and has worked extremely hard helping me make all the arrangements for picking up and delivering the coats. I would also like to thank Mary McIlroy for helping me. And, a special thank you goes to Cathy Christoff with the Roxy Kids in Action and all of their hard work before, during and after the coat sale. Also, a big thanks goes to Uxbridge Public School for hosting our event again, and the Rotary Club of Uxbridge for donating 14 coat racks to help make it so successful. A huge thank you goes to Jason from Wash Worx Laundromat for all the cleaning of the donated coats.
Most importantly, thank you to the community for all of your support over the years to help keep Operation Warm Hearts going year-after-year and helping to keep people warm.
Next year’s sale will take place on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016.
Operation Warm Hearts Coordinator
To the Editor,
In response to Pat Asling's letter in your November 5th edition, I could not agree more, and so would the rest of the Tourism Advisory Committee (TAC)! All of us who have served on the committee, including some of us since it was set up in 2010, have been trying to impress on anyone who would listen how much potential the Township has as a tourism magnet.
Letting the rest of Canada know about what we have to offer requires significant investment which we can fund with the help of Durham Region, Central Counties and whatever budget Council allocates to TAC. If we can persuade all the parties involved to work together with TAC then we may well be able to get some serious tourism traffic into downtown. We already have the most used trails anywhere in the Greater Toronto Hamilton Area! We just need to get these visitors to come into town as part of their trip.
So yes we need more promotion but one of the best ways is by word of mouth, so pass the word on to your friends and relatives that we are a great place to visit, as well as the Trails Capital of Canada. Let's make sure everyone in Canada knows it!
Uxbridge Ward 3 Candidate,
Chair Tourism Advisory Committee,
Lavender Cottage B&B owner
“I feel the greatest reward for doing is the opportunity to do more,” - Jonas Salk.
It’s that time of year once again, and as highlighted throughout this week’s edition of The Standard, North Durham is buzzing with a host of tremendous charitable activities, including toy and food bank donation drives as we enter the Holiday season.
Many of us in this area are extremely fortunate, and can always be counted on to give back. Time and time again, the generosity of our local residents is second to none. Every week, we’re inundated with acts of kindness in our communities, as vans are routinely filled to support those in need.
It’s important to remember that a lot of this great work is carried out by a dedicated team of local volunteers giving back to their community. For generations, these selfless individuals have formed the backbone of our wonderful communities and they should be commended for their great work throughout the year.
Without all of our great volunteers, our communities wouldn’t be such great places to live. They don’t volunteer looking for praise, they do it for the betterment of their neighbours, and when praise does come, it’s appreciated so much more. The good feelings generated through volunteers creates a ripple effect throughout the community and in the end, everyone wins.
There are a lot of great events on the horizon locally that exist solely because of the hard work of volunteers such as our Santa Claus parades, Toy Drives and food bank collections.
The reward for all of this volunteering isn’t money, fame or awards, it’s the knowledge that you’ve done your part to make your corner of the world a better place, and that’s why so many in this community are so deserving of our praise. However you can, please support the efforts of volunteers this holiday season.
Signs sprung up last week at locations across North Durham that flu shots are now available.
Although there will always be debate over just how effective the vaccine is at fighting different influenza strains, it is the best line of defence against the spread of illness that we have as we trudge into another flu season.
With the flu shot now widely available at medical offices and pharmacies, you would think that more people would opt to have the shot, but the opposite is true. Some estimates peg the number of Canadians receiving the shot as being as few as one in five. Although in most parts of the country it continently hovers around one-third participation in the program.
The flu represents a tremendous public health risk, especially to the elderly, the very young, pregnant women and those with compromised immune systems.
Despite all of this knowledge, millions of Canadians contract the flu annually, with more than 12,000 ending up in a hospital as a result, and most distressing more than 3,000 annual deaths as a result of the flu.
To prevent this, it is easier than ever to receive the flu shot. You don’t have to visit a hospital or doctor’s office, simply make a trip to many grocery stores or pharmacies and you’ll be able to be on your way in minutes, and within two weeks it’ll reach full effectiveness. There is even a nasal spray for kids.
It may not prevent you from getting the flu, but it will likely lessen your symptoms and more importantly, it will prevent you from passing it on.
Nothing is as effective as preventing the spread of the flu as getting the shot, and hopefully this year more people take advantage of this program, and pass on vaccines instead of viruses.