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The Ontario government would have the power for the first time to fine nursing homes and appoint a supervisor to take control of the most dysfunctional facilities under proposed legislation aimed at holding the sector accountable for how it looks after those under its care.

The new fines range from $200,000 for an individual to $1-million for a corporation and are part of an overhaul of the province’s rules governing long-term care. Under the proposed legislation introduced Thursday, the government pledged to spend billions of dollars to recruit more workers for the chronically understaffed sector, to double the number of inspectors and to build new facilities to replace the aging stock of care homes with multibed wards.

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought intense scrutiny on the sector after the virus tore through Ontario’s care homes, killing 3,824 residents. It’s laid bare weaknesses in the province’s oversight of the sector, including the decision of Premier Doug Ford’s government to all but eliminate inspections in 2018.

Read more: Military dismisses reports that Ontario nursing-home residents died of dehydration

The proposed Ontario legislation includes pledges to spend billions of dollars on hiring more workers for the chronically understaff sector, doubling the number of inspectors to keep closer watch on conditions in the homes, and building new facilities to replenish the province’s aging stock of homes with multi-bed wards.Aaron Vincent Elkaim

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Joel Quenneville resigns as Florida Panthers’ coach after meeting with NHL’s Gary Bettman

Joel Quenneville resigned as coach of the Florida Panthers after meeting with NHL commissioner Gary Bettman on Thursday as the hockey world braces for further fallout from the Chicago Blackhawks’ sexual-abuse scandal.

Bettman will meet on Friday with one-time Blackhawk front-office official Kevin Cheveldayoff, now general manager of the Winnipeg Jets.

Quenneville and Cheveldayoff were summoned to New York City to explain their role in dealing with sexual-abuse allegations made more than a decade ago by Kyle Beach, a former Blackhawks’ minor-league player. The team was the subject of a shocking investigation made public this week by the Chicago law firm Jenner & Block.

The firm’s report, commissioned by the Blackhawks, centres on alleged sexual assault against Beach by former Blackhawk video coach Brad Aldrich, and how Blackhawk executives failed to properly report the incident.


COP26 is a circus with a purpose: Putting climate change in the spotlight so no country can ignore it

The world is in for a chaotic circus of a climate-change summit as world leaders, top business executives, Hollywood celebrities and royals head to Glasgow, Scotland, for negotiations on preventing global temperatures from hitting catastrophic levels. And that may be exactly the sort of galvanizing spectacle that’s needed as leaders face this make-or-break opportunity.

Over the next two weeks, Glasgow will be a dizzying scene of picket lines, VIP parties, backroom diplomacy and performative politics, writes The Globe’s Adam Radwanski. All that pomp and circumstance will expose COP26 organizers and participants to accusations that they’ve allowed the hard work of multilateral negotiations to be overshadowed.

But the hope has to be that the fear of looking ridiculous – if officials emerge from all this with negotiating stalemates and weak platitudes – will also compel participants from the nearly 200 countries involved in the negotiations to up their climate ambition, and to work closely together on shared solutions.

Catch up on more climate-related coverage:

Meet Homo bodoensis: Newly named species deepens understanding of human ancestry, researchers say

Human evolution is a complex business, especially during the Middle Pleistocene. That’s when much of the planet was in the throes of the last ice age and a group of big-brained primates in Africa was busy diverging into multiple species – one of which would eventually turn into us.

Now, a team of international researchers is proposing a way to make sense of an increasingly confusing fossil record from the period, which stretches from about 780,000 to 126,000 years ago. The proposal includes retiring two species names that the researchers say no longer make sense and adding a new species that was the immediate precursor to our own, Homo sapiens – but not our close cousins, the Neanderthals.

The researchers’ proposed changes could start as many debates as they settle.

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Facebook rebrands as Meta amid controversy over leaked documents: Facebook has renamed itself Meta, in a major rebrand that centres its ambitions on building the “metaverse,” a shared virtual environment that it bets will be the next big thing in computing platforms. Its name change comes as the company battles criticism from lawmakers and regulators globally over its market dominance, algorithmic decisions and policing of divisive content on its platforms.

Senate to require COVID-19 vaccination for in-person meetings: Canada’s senators will be required to ensure they are fully vaccinated in order to attend in-person meetings of the chamber. In a statement, Senate Speaker George Furey said the requirement, which takes effect Nov. 22, follows consultation with the leaders and facilitators of all recognized parties and parliamentary groups. The Senate’s return has yet to be set.

Democrats agree to ‘historic economic framework’ on domestic policy package, Biden says: U.S. President Joe Biden announced Thursday that he has reached a “historic economic framework” with congressional Democrats on his sweeping domestic policy package, a dramatically scaled-back deal than what his administration had envisioned. The White House believes the US$1.75-trillion bill, which covers support for social services and climate-change programs, will pass the 50-50 Senate. Biden had been vying to secure a deal before he departed for a pair of summits overseas.

Chinese border town Ruili ‘ruthlessly looted’ after almost 200 days of COVID-19 lockdown: Ruili, a Chinese city that shares a border with Mynamar, has become a prison for its 260,000 residents, after 200 days of lockdown. The rest of the country, meanwhile, has seen a relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions. No other city has more painfully borne the brunt of China’s zero COVID-19 strategy, which aims to speedily suppress any suspected outbreak. Its deputy mayor, Dai Rongli, lamented COVID-19′s impact on Ruili, saying it has drained “the city’s last trace of life.”


Amazon and Apple earnings took the froth out of U.S. stock futures and world equities on Friday, though the euro held near one-month highs on euro zone rate rise hopes. Amazon reported a slump in profit after the bell on Thursday that it expects will continue through the holiday quarter, as higher pay to attract workers and other operational disruptions diminish the company’s windfall from online shopping. Supply chain woes cost Apple $6 billion in sales during the company’s fiscal fourth quarter, which missed Wall Street expectations.


Steven Guilbeault got the gig he wanted. Will he be able to handle the heat?

“His first order of business: capping greenhouse gas emissions from the oil-and-gas sector. The precise level of the cap Mr. Guilbeault sets will determine investment and production in the oil patch for decades to come – putting thousands of jobs in Alberta, and the health of its finances, on the line.” - Konrad Yakabuski

What election? Trudeau’s cabinet shuffle signals a desire to get down to business as usual

“...While a cabinet is typically sworn in within two weeks of an election, it took Trudeau more than a month to introduce his new roster of ministers, ahead of a late reconvening of Parliament on Nov. 22. It’s clear he would prefer that Canadians forget about that election in the hope that, with more time and legislative achievements, he can get the majority government he still desires.” - Lori Turbull, director and an associate professor at the School of Public Administration at Dalhousie University


Brian Gable/The Globe and Mail


Six authors to turn to for Halloween reads

From Stephen King’s The Shining, the brilliantly written thriller set in an empty Colorado hotel, to Grande Dame Agatha Christie’s cozy Hallowe’en Party, which assembles the usual cast of Christie characters at a country house, here’s a selection of blood-curdling classics to get your heart racing as Halloween approaches.

MOMENT IN TIME: Oct. 29, 1998

South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission delivers apartheid report

Chairman of the Truth and Reconciliation, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, right, hands over the TRC report to South Africa's President Nelson Mandela at the state theatre building in Pretoria Oct. 29, 1998.Peter Andrews/Reuters

It took five heavy volumes and more than 2,700 pages for the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission to document the apartheid-era crimes that it had uncovered in its two years of hearings. “We have looked the beast in the eye,” said the commission’s chairman, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, as he handed over its report to then-president Nelson Mandela in 1998. The TRC found that atrocities had been committed on all sides during the decades of white-minority rule. The liberation fighters of the African National Congress were not spared from criticism: Mandela’s former wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, was found to have political and moral responsibility for the actions of a gang that had abused and abducted Soweto youths. But the worst atrocity was the apartheid system itself, which the TRC concluded was a crime against humanity. It found that former president P. W. Botha, among others, was responsible for the deliberate unlawful killing of anti-apartheid activists. The TRC became an inspiration for inquiries into the crimes of history in many countries, including Canada. But its aftermath was deeply flawed. The TRC had recommended that several hundred people be investigated for possible apartheid-era crimes, but almost none have been prosecuted in the 23 years since then. Geoffrey York

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