Andy Trudeau focus of inaugural exhibition at Midland Cultural Centre Gallery of Indigenous Art

There’s a new spotlight shining on First Nations art in Midland. The newly established (MCC) Gallery of Indigenous Art will be located in the Atrium Gallery, a space formerly utilized by Quest Art School and Gallery on the first floor of the King Street facility.    With programming and oversight by a committee featuring a majority Indigenous membership, the MCC will operate the gallery focusing on work by artists and artisans of Beausoleil First Nation and members of the Georgian Bay Métis community. The space will also show works by the broader community of Canadian Indigenous artists and artisans. The inaugural exhibition will be “Andy Trudeau 1924-2013, The Drawings.” Trudeau grew up on a homestead his family built on Spider Bay in the mid-1920s. The family is part of the historic Georgian Bay Métis community. When Trudeau was 87 years old and living in Hillcrest Village Care Centre in Midland, he was trying to explain what a scoot was to a fellow resident. He asked his daughter Jo-Anne to bring him a pencil and paper so he could draw one. After this first pencil drawing, Trudeau became an artist, drawing daily with graphite pencil on loose paper, and later with coloured pencils in a sketchbook. By the time of his passing two years later, he had created a group of drawings that documented the scoots and boats he built, as well as the animals, birds and fish he trapped and caught in his long life on the outer islands of Georgian Bay. These drawings are full of precise information about their subjects, even though Trudeau paid little attention to the conventions of perspective. Taken together, these drawings document a life lived on the remote and hard-to-access islands of Georgian Bay. “Andy Trudeau 1924-2013, The Drawings” will open as a virtual exhibition on the MCC website Sept. 17, and will be open to the public when the MCC reopens to the public later this fall.

Martin Regg Cohn: Kieran Moore gets a master class in dishonesty and cowardice from Doug Ford

This just in: Ontario’s Medical Officers of Health have come together to demand mandatory inoculation at all colleges and universities. That means “full vaccination against be required for all individuals involved in any in-person activities on campus (students, staff, faculty, contractors and visitors).” Is this a clarion call from medical doctors with full authority, at long last? Not so fast. This latest public exhortation for vaccination comes from the Council of Ontario Medical Officers of Health, which speaks on behalf of all 34 public health units across the province. But their collective call for new requirements is not to be confused with the conspicuous silence from the chief medical officer of health who outranks them, Dr. Kieran Moore. Before being elevated to Ontario’s highest medical perch, Dr. Moore was part of that council of 34 physicians, back when he ran Kingston’s health unit. But he is no longer in that position, nor is he on the same page. As of last June, Dr. Moore presides over the province at large. And with his new writ, he won’t commit — wedded as he is to the proposition of being half-pregnant on COVID-19 vaccines. Thanks to his new working relationship with Premier , Dr. Moore has lost his voice. While both of them proclaim fidelity to the people of this province, they seem reluctant to accept an obvious truth: You cannot be half-pregnant, especially not in mid-pandemic. The problem with being half-pregnant is that you are trying to have it both ways yet satisfying no one. As an example, consider this contradiction from Ford and his chief medical officer of health as COVID-19 overwhelms us: Everyone should be vaccinated. And yet everyone need not be vaccinated. Or ponder this proposition from the premier and the good doctor: We must do everything possible to prevent lockdowns. But not the one proven thing — mandatory vaccinations — that would preclude lockdowns. This disconnect on inoculations is intellectual dishonesty. It is also political cowardice and policy incoherence. Perhaps that’s why the fantasy of being half-pregnant is not recognized in the medical literature yet endures in our political nomenclature. Ford’s inability to lead the way is unsurprising, given his mealy-mouthed meandering for months on end — from mask mandates to vaccine requirements. Dr. Moore’s timidity is no less a disappointment, given the high expectations over his appointment. In the same week that the province’s 34 public health units were clamouring for mandatory campus rules — with nearly 1 million people “required to submit proof of vaccination” — Dr. Moore was stubbornly with the full weight of his office. With waves of students converging on university and college campuses over the next few days, and a fourth wave of COVID-19 looming, his reticence is matched only by the premier’s hesitance. The trend lines are inexorable. As long as our vaccination uptake stalls, infections will soar and lockdowns will follow. That’s why have recently embraced vaccine passports as a first step in validating inoculations. That’s why the federal government has promised an international verification framework. That none of these systems are yet in place is an indictment of our , but at least these other governments are getting with the program. Ontario’s refusal to even explore these options is bizarrely self-defeating. “We aren’t doing it — simple as that,” Ford announced last month. “We aren’t going to have a split society.” All these weeks later, it has become painfully obvious that society is increasingly split — and sliced and diced and divided along demographic lines. For the young adults heading to university and college this year, and the older adults who keep those post-secondary institutions running, the reluctance to embrace science is confounding. It is also worrying for parents like me who are dropping off their kids on campus, and seeing up close just how closely they’ll be congregating with other students and staff in classrooms and labs. Without coherent guidance from the government, public institutions and private businesses are making it up as they go along — or making do by doing nothing. That leaves workplaces unsafe, campuses unclear and companies uncertain. Municipalities are also at sea, imploring Ford to set a province-wide standard to avoid a patchwork of vaccine mandates. The premier keeps ducking, just as he did last year by refusing to make masks mandatory, instead fobbing it off on local councils (he dutifully donned a mask in public, but without having to wear the decision). That’s not leadership. That’s showmanship. To its credit, Ontario’s Chamber of Commerce has taken the initiative — seeking legal guidance on how its member employers can deal with the challenges. To their discredit, some labour leaders are defending vocal anti-vax dissenters instead of advocating for the collective rights of all union members to a safe workplace — a principle that cannot be compromised. Against that backdrop, we need a government that can backstop the province. Instead, Ontario’s leadership vacuum has become the perfect incubator for a pandemic — and a leading indicator for inaction. Martin Regg Cohn is a Toronto-based columnist focusing on Ontario politics and international affairs for the Star. Follow him on Twitter:

Dyrrin Daley guilty of second-degree murder in deaths of Barrie father and son

WARNING: Some readers may find the content of this story disturbing. A 29-year-old Barrie man has been found guilty of two counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of a Barrie father and son in 2017. Justice Vanessa Christie made the ruling in a Barrie court Aug. 30 following a lengthy trial she presided over in June, which did not include a jury. Dyrrin Daley, 29, now awaits sentencing for the murders of James Pasowisty, 51, and his 19-year-old son, Nick, on Feb. 8, 2017. Daley testified that he stabbed the pair to death in self-defence after he was initially attacked by James Pasowisty. But Christie gave no credence to his version of events surrounding what prosecutors called a “massacre” at a William Street second-floor apartment in the early hours of Feb. 8. “This court does not believe the evidence of Mr. Daley. There are numerous and critical inconsistencies between his trial testimony and his previous statements … Incontrovertible scientific evidence contradicts Mr. Daley in many critical respects.” Christie said at times Daley’s explanation of what led him to stab the father and son multiple times “appeared to be rehearsed.” Daley has been in custody since he was arrested at his nearby home the next afternoon. He was originally charged with first-degree murder in the death of Nick Pasowisty on the grounds that he allegedly confined Nick to the apartment. But Christie ruled the Crown did not prove Daley restricted the younger Pasowisty from escape during the bloody melee. “It makes sense that Nick would like to escape, but it’s just as likely he stayed to help his father,” Christie said. Christie also ruled that Daley was not provoked into repeatedly lashing out and stabbing the pair, which would have reduced his crimes to manslaughter if proven by the Crown. Court heard James suffered 38 “sharp-instrument” cuts and stab wounds while Nick suffered 35. Daley had testified that he went into a frenzy because he was under attack and flailed the knife in self defence. But Christie said the evidence showed he stabbed the father and son “with purpose.” While Daley may have not gone to the apartment with intent to kill, she came to the “inescapable conclusion” that he meant to end their lives once he started using the knife. Court heard Daley had been to the apartment before to purchase cannabis from James Pasowisty.

Major recalls of dresses at Toys R Us, salads at Walmart, dehumidifiers at Home Depot and Structube furniture trigger multiple warnings from Health Canada

A number of new recalls from both Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has sparked new warnings to shoppers at well-known stores. The recalls include products sold at Toys R Us, Walmart, Home Depot, Structube and other stores. One recall involves the Hop Skip Sparkle Fairy Princess Dress sold at Toys R Us.  The dress has adjustable straps, a stretchy bodice embellished with flowers, and a skirt with multilayers of satin and glitter tulle.  It can be identified by the product UPC on the hang tag or the manufacturer number on the sewn-in product label, according to the “Health Canada’s sampling and evaluation program has determined that the recalled dresses do not meet the flammability requirements under the Toys Regulations,” Health Canada said. “If exposed to ignition sources such as stove elements, candles, matches or lighters, the dress can catch fire, posing a risk to children.” As of August 19, 2021, the company has received no reports of incidents or injuries. The company reported that 2,306 dresses were sold in Canada from October, 2019 to August, 2021. “Consumers should immediately take the recalled dress away from children and return the product to any Toys “R” Us Canada store for a full refund,” Health Canada said. For more information, consumers may contact Toys “R” Us Canada using the live chat feature on the . Consumers may also contact Toys “R” Us customer service by email on the webpage. A second recall involves White lacquered 3-drawer dressers with round metal tubular chrome legs sold at Structube. Health Canada’s sampling and evaluation program has determined that the Snower 3-drawer does not comply with the performance requirements of the ASTM F2057-19 Standard Safety Specification for Clothing Storage Units, “The product can tip-over if not securely anchored to the wall by using the tip-over restraints provided with the product, posing a tip-over and an entrapment hazard that can result in death or serious injuries to children,” Health Canada said, As of July 29 2021, the company has received no reports of incidents or injuries in Canada. The company reported that 2,223 units of the affected product were sold in Canada from June 2016 to July 2021. “Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled product that is not securely anchored to the wall and install the anchoring kit provided with the unit or contact Structube to obtain a free anchoring repair kit,” Health Canada said. For more information, consumers may contact Structube Customer Support Centre at 1-877-721-3787 or any one of the Structube stores in Canada. Contact information is available on the . A third recall involves Curation Foods is recalling rom the marketplace due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination, according to the “food recall warning.” “Consumers should not consume the recalled product,” according to the warning. “If you think you became sick from consuming a recalled product, call your doctor.” Recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased, the CFIA added. Lastly, certain have been recalled as part of a due to concerns they will catch fire. The company has received two reports of incidents in Canada, that resulted in fire and/or smoke damage to property. No incidents of injury were reported in Canada. In the United States, the company has received 107 reports of incidents that resulted in fire and/or smoke damage to property, Health Canada said. Here are photos of some of the recalled products:

‘I can’t find a place for her’: 82-year-old Collingwood widow struggles to find housing as hot real estate market makes rental units scarce

The boxes of Betty’s belongings are starting to pile up in the back room of her two-bedroom condo apartment in Collingwood that she has rented for the better part of a decade. Most of the boxes, along with her furniture, are destined to go into storage within the month. But not her television, she insists. “I don’t want it going into storage and the mice getting into it,” she said. At 82, Betty — she asked that her last name not be used — is having to uproot her life and move in with her daughter and grandson. The widow — her husband died about a decade ago — will be staying on the couch of their Wasaga Beach apartment unit. For how long, she’s not sure. “I want my own apartment, I’m used to living by myself now,” she said. “I’ll have to stay with my daughter until I do.” A few months back, her landlord came to her and asked whether she could afford to pay more than the current $1,040 a month. Betty suggested she might be able to afford about $1,400 — she makes a little more than $2,000 monthly from Old Age Security and the Canada Pension Plan — but then her landlord decided just to take advantage of the area’s hot housing market and sell. It’s a story Wendy Moore hears too often. The retired Anglican minister is a member of the regional housing task force created by the South Georgian Bay chapter of the Simcoe County Alliance to End Homelessness, and is a frequent volunteer at the Wasaga Beach Ministerial Food Bank. “It is, sadly, related to the crazy house prices, and (landlords) realizing they can get more,” she said. Betty has spent the last two months in an unsuccessful hunt for a new apartment within her budget. “I’ve been on the phone for the last two months looking for a place,” said Betty, sitting at her kitchen table, a couple of packages of packing tape at the ready to seal up more boxes. She added that government agencies have also not been particularly helpful. Moore said she is working with another woman who has no budget for housing, who ended up living in a tent on the beach. “I can’t find a place for her,” she said. “I had her on a motel voucher program for a little while, but we can only offer out so much money to support those things. “I don’t know what we’re going to do with her, (and) there are too many stories like that.” The task force undertook a survey that garnered more than 400 responses. The task force will use that information for a report that will be presented to area municipalities later this fall. “I’m anxious to find (recommendations) that work,” Moore said. “It’s a very upsetting situation.” To top it all off, Betty is also waiting to hear from a Toronto hospital about scheduling for a surgery she needs. One of her sons — she has seven children — is worried about her moving to the east side of Wasaga Beach, away from the Collingwood hospital and into an area he fears is sketchy. “I’ve been living in this town all my life,” she said. “I don’t feel like starting all over again. I don’t know what people are going to do in this town.”

POLL: The Canadian federal election is less than a week away. Who are you voting for?

The choices will be aplenty come Sept. 20. That’s the day of the 2021 Canadian federal election. As we close in on the final days before voting day, we want to know who you will be voting for? Take our poll and let us know: Disclaimer: Poll results are not scientific. As the informal findings of a survey presented to the readers of this site, they reflect the opinions of those readers who have chosen to participate. The survey is available online to anyone who is interested in taking it. This poll does not restrict the number of votes each person can cast.

‘Exciting for our community’: Contractor chosen to build Wasaga’s new arena and library

The bids are in for Wasaga Beach’s twin-pad arena and library. At a special council meeting Sept. 7, councillors accepted the bid of Aquicon Construction for $43.48 million, more than $1 million less than the construction budget set at $44.57 million. The bid was one of five submitted from a group of companies that had already been pre-qualified to respond to the town’s request for proposals. The total project cost is $59.9 million, which includes the cost of the property at and the municipality’s consultants. A ground-breaking ceremony is scheduled for Sept. 22. The project is expected to be complete by the summer of 2023. “It’s been quite a process to get here,” said Mayor Nina Bifolchi. “This is definitely exciting for our community.” According to the report provided to council by library chief executive officer Pamela Pal and director of recreation, events and facilities Chris Roos, Aquicon has built several similar projects for municipalities across Ontario, including London’s Bostwick Community Centre and the Sherwood Community Centre and Library in Milton. Only Coun. Joe Belanger opposed the recommendation, saying he doesn’t believe the town should move ahead with the project without federal or provincial funding. “I am in favour of a new library and arena, and I am certainly in favour of choosing the lowest bidder,” Belanger said. Other councillors, however, said the project was a long time coming. “It’s almost 20 years coming to fruition (for a new library),” Coun. David Foster said, adding the municipality’s grant writer will continue to pursue funding from the upper levels of government. “Sometimes, if we don’t get it for project A, we get it for project B,” he said. “This is a huge step forward.” Deputy Mayor Sylvia Bray said it is also a large investment in the community. “We all have our fingers crossed there will be funding,” she said. “We can’t put life on hold waiting for the magic pot of money. We’ve planned our resources, we’ve budgeted for this, the tender came in under budget, which is really exciting, and I can’t wait to get this moving.”