Board of Health member speaks out against body shaming and President Biden visits Ottawa: Top five stories this week
U.S. President Joe Biden visits Ottawa, a board of health member calls out a body shaming email and a school board proposes a four-day school week at two elementary schools.
CTVNewsOttawa.ca looks at the top five stories on our website this week.
Biden visits Ottawa: U.S. president wraps up two-day trip to Ottawa
Heavy security and sparse crowds greeted U.S. President Joe Biden during his whirlwind two-day trip to Ottawa.
Biden's visit to Ottawa included a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, an address to Parliament and a gala dinner at the Canada Aviation and Space Museum.
On Friday morning, a small crowd gathered along Wellington Street to watch the president's motorcade drive to Parliament Hill.
"It has been a really long time since a president has come to Ottawa and I am hoping to get a glimpse through the ‘beast’ window before he gets to Parliament Hill," Josh Arless said.
The U.S. President did not take a side trip to any destinations during his 27-hour visit to the capital.
Biden did get to taste ice cream from a beloved Ottawa shop during his visit to the capital. Biden and Trudeau shared ice cream from Moo Shu, the small-batch ice cream maker on Bank Street, after the president arrived in Ottawa Thursday evening.
The flavour, officially called “Friend-chip Goals,” Moo Shu founder Liz Mok told CTV News in an email.
The ice cream was a toasted marshmallow and maple sugar ice cream, "spun with chocolate like a stracciatella for a chocolate chip effect,” she said.
President Joe Biden meets with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in his office at Parliament Hill, Friday, March 24, 2023, in Ottawa, Canada. (Andrew Harnik/AP Photo)
Ottawa board of health member sees outpouring of support after body-shaming message
A member of Ottawa's Board of Health spoke out about body-shaming this week after receiving a letter that said she shouldn't serve on the board because of her weight.
Elyse Banham tweeted a picture of a letter she received that claimed she could not be a role model because she appeared to be overweight, according to the writer.
"As a member of the Ottawa Board of Health, citizens expect you to be a role model for our city's residents and I believve (sic) you cannot fulfil that role due to your unhealthy status. It is unacceptable to be overweight by the 20 pounds it appears you are carrying," the letter said. "I would be happy to see you on the new committee on the condition that you become a better role model."
Banham was quick to call it out.
"Standards that are projected onto women make this type of work hard. Sad, demeaned & hurt today but standing up for myself and all women," she said on Twitter
OPH's Twitter account replied with a "corrected" letter from their "Bruce" character calling Banham "an incredible role model for our community" and that her empathy for others makes her a "beacon of much-needed light" for which they are grateful.
Ottawa Board of Health member Elyse Banham (right) speaks with Ottawa city councillor Theresa Kavanagh, the council liaison on women and gender equity. March 20, 2023. (Jackie Perez/CTV News Ottawa)
Via Rail apologizes after Muslim man told not to pray at Ottawa train station
VIA Rail apologized this week after a Muslim man was told he couldn't pray at the Ottawa train station.
Ahmed, who asked that his last name not be used, said a security guard at the station told him he was not allowed to pray there and that he should pray outside.
The Toronto man said the interaction left him feeling shocked, embarrassed and disgusted.
Via Rail issued a statement apologizing to Ahmed and "the entire Muslim community" and said they are investigating the incident.
On Thursday, the crown corporation said it is working to improve its diversity and inclusion policies in response to the incident.
A screenshot from a video on social media in which a security guard at the Ottawa train station tells Ahmed, a Toronto man waiting to travel home, not to pray inside the station. (TikTokfirstname.lastname@example.org)
Ottawa French Catholic school board piloting four-day week at two schools
Elementary students at two Ottawa French Catholic schools will soon have the option to go to school four days a week.
The Conseil des écoles catholiques du Centre-Est has announced plans for a four-day school week pilot-project this fall, becoming the first school board in Ontario to offer families a shortened school week schedule.
Parents of students at École élémentaire catholique l’Étoile-de-l’Est in Orleans and École élémentaire catholique Saint-Rémi in Kanata will be allowed to opt-in to a four-day school week.
Students enrolled in the four-day school week would begin classes one week earlier than students attending classes five days a week and the school year would end three days later than the typical school year. Each school day would last an additional 38 minutes compared to students attending classes five days a week.
École élémentaire catholique l’Étoile-de-l’Est in Orleans will be home to a four-day school week pilot project, starting in the fall. (Tyler Fleming/CTV News Ottawa)
Northern Lights seen over Ottawa, eastern Ontario
Stargazers were treated with a rare sight over Ottawa and eastern Ontario this week.
Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights, made a rare appearance, with residents across Ontario treated to the stunning effect.
The Northern Lights normally aren't visible this far south.
Northern lights overhead in Dunrobin on March 23, 2023. (Christopher Illidge/CTV Viewer)
Ottawa Top Stories
Special Air Quality Statement
BREAKING | Amber Alert lifted after child found 'safe and sound' in Quebec: police
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Hundreds of American firefighters arrive in Canada to help battle wildfires
Hundreds of American firefighters have recently arrived in Canada to help battle wildfires and more are on the way, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Wednesday.
Can face masks help protect you from wildfire smoke? Health expert explains
An official recommendation to wear a mask to protect yourself from wildfire smoke is being echoed by health experts as plumes of smoke make their way across parts of Canada, causing poor air quality.
Here's how major cities in Canada and the U.S. look blanketed by wildfire smoke
Photos show smoke-filled skies in cities across Canada and the U.S. as air quality warnings were issued in wake of the hundreds of wildfires from Quebec and Ontario.
'Very, very hard to breathe': Experts call wildfires a 'major public health concern' for Canada
As forest fires rage across the country, experts are sounding the alarm over the physical and psychological impacts of the wildfires and saying that they pose a serious public health issue, which individuals and governments need to acknowledge and act upon.
WATCH | Rate hike 'may be the last straw' for some homeowners: mortgage broker
With the latest hike bringing Canada's key interest rates to levels not seen since 2001, one mortgage broker is warning that it may be 'the last straw' for some homeowners with variable mortgages.
Canadians more likely to support foreign interference inquiry than hearings: Nanos
Canadians are twice as likely to support a formal inquiry into foreign interference, as opposed to public hearings, according to new polling from Nanos Research for CTV News.
opinion | Eight takeaways from Prince Harry's seven hours on the witness stand
It's been a busy, tumultuous few days for Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex as he took his place on the witness stand in his trial against the Mirror Group Newspapers. Here are royal commentator Afua Hagan's top takeaways from his two-day grilling.
Calgary mass killer Matthew de Grood seeks 'absolute discharge'
The man who was found not criminally responsible in the stabbing deaths of five people at a house party in Brentwood more than nine years ago is seeking more freedoms.
Trudeau shows no interest in compromising with Meta, Google over online news bill
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is showing no interest in compromising with Meta and Google over a Liberal bill that would make them pay for Canadian journalism that helps the companies generate revenue.
'This is not helping': Frustrated evacuees say official communication lacking in wildfire recovery
Frustration is building among some people from neighbourhoods hardest-hit by the fires near Halifax. CTV's Heidi Petracek reports.
A 'whole list of hazards' are keeping residents near N.S. fire zones under evacuation: officials
It is still not safe for some evacuated residents whose houses were spared from wildfire damage to return home, officials from Halifax Regional Municipality and the District of Shelburne said.
Halifax support workers strike impacting students and families
The father of disabled teen from Fall River, N.S. is calling on all sides to get back to the bargaining table and put an end to the Halifax area CUPE educational support worker strike.
consumer, | Toronto woman 'horrified' after losing $95,000 to romance scam
Romance scams have always been around, but they got worse during the pandemic, and fraudsters continue to use social media and dating sites to find victims.
Number of Ontario forest fires doubled compared to same time last year
Ontario has already experienced double the number of forest fires this year compared to the same six months in 2022.
Alleged Toronto anti-cyclist road rage incident caught on camera
Toronto police are investigating an incident of alleged road rage against a cyclist that was caught on camera.
Ontario man charged with first-degree murder in killing of Claudia Iacono outside Montreal salon
An Ontario man has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of Claudia Iacono, the daughter-in-law of Mafia associate Moreno Gallo, after she was gunned down at the wheel of her car in Montreal last month.
Woman, 55, dies after vehicle strikes 2 pedestrians in Cote-des-Neiges; second pedestrian seriously injured
A pedestrian has died after she and a fellow pedestrian were both hit by a vehicle Wednesday afternoon in Montreal's Cote-des-Neiges neighbourhood.
More evacuations in Quebec as record-breaking fires continue to burn
Quebec's wildfire season, which has forced thousands from their homes and left other communities on high alert, is the worst on record, officials said Wednesday,
Wildfire west of Sudbury prompts evacuation order, total active fires in northern Ont. grows to 54
A northern Ontario forest fire that started west of Sudbury on Sunday morning has grown to more than 1,000 hectares and has prompted officials to issue an evacuation order for the immediate area as the number of active fires in the region grows.
Spreading wildfires prompt northeastern communities to evacuate
Communities affected by wildfires in the region are evacuating for safety reasons. The province says there is significant danger as several out-of-control wildfires affect air quality and physical safety.
‘Incompetent’ northern Ont. doctor loses his license to practise medicine
A northern Ontario doctor has been stripped of his medical licence for conduct described as “disgraceful, dishonourable or unprofessional.”
VIDEO | 'Hate and discrimination have no place in any TVDSB schools': Investigation underway after pride flag torn down
Students at Sir Frederick Banting Secondary School in London, Ont. are being investigated after a video was posted online showing students tearing down a LGBTQ2S+ pride flag.
Special air quality statement remains in effect, rain possible over the weekend
As wildfire smoke blankets Ontario and eastern U.S., causing hazardous air quality and hazy skies, smoke in the Forest City is expected to remain until at least Thursday night.
City pitches new parking garage and extended free parking to aid downtown London, Ont.’s recovery
Since early in the COVID-19 pandemic, the Honk Mobile Parking App has offered two hours of free municipal parking in London’s core area business districts.
Trustee suspended over posts targeting LGBTQ2S+ community, division says
A Manitoba school trustee has been suspended over social media posts the division says targeted the LGBTQ2S+ community.
Continued closure of Fort Gibraltar causing changes for soon to be married couples
The closure of Fort Gibraltar following the collapse of an elevated walkway that sent 16 students and one teacher to hospital has left some couples scrambling to find a place to get married.
Crash with stolen vehicle sends two Winnipeg officers to hospital
A section of Main Street is closed on Wednesday morning following a car crash in the area.
Poor air quality in Waterloo region and Guelph will continue into the weekend: Environment Canada
There's high levels of air pollution in Waterloo region and Wellington County as smoke plumes from wildfires burning in Quebec and northeastern Ontario continue to blow into the region, Environment Canada says.
Six Region of Waterloo councillors announce support for amalgamation
One unified city – that’s what six Region of Waterloo councillors say they want when it comes to the future of the region’s municipal governance.
Habitat for Humanity nears completion of new affordable housing units
The work never stops at Habitat for Humanity when it comes to building affordable homes for families in Waterloo region.
Council reconsiders decision to reject recommendations on affordability crisis
Calgary city council has reconsidered its decision to vote against recommendations made by an expert panel to address the city’s housing affordability crisis.
Man on mobility scooter hit by truck in northeast Calgary intersection
Police say a man on a mobility scooter has life-altering injuries after he was struck by a vehicle in a northeast Calgary intersection on Wednesday evening.
Hot, dry weather comes with cautions and a few benefits
Calgary was under a heat warning Wednesday with forecast high of 29C.
Saskatoon property taxes could see 13 per cent hike as city confronts $75M revenue gap
Significant property tax hikes may be needed to cover a funding shortfall, according to City of Saskatoon administration.
Saskatoon builder looking to flip abandoned homes to first time buyers
A Saskatoon man wants to play matchmaker for the unloved homes in the city.
Latest season of survivalist series 'Alone' filmed in Sask., set to premiere June 8
The rugged wilderness of northern Saskatchewan was host to survivalists from all walks of life, vying to win the top prize of the popular series 'Alone.'
Albertans asked to conserve electricity Wednesday evening due to hot temperatures
Hot temperatures across Alberta prompted a grid alert Wednesday afternoon.
'A long time coming': Edmonton Catholics commit $3.2M to Indigenous reconciliation fund
The Archdiocese of Edmonton will spend $3.2 million on reconciliation initiatives with First Nations, Métis and Inuit people in the Alberta capital region.
'Major travel delays': Anthony Henday Drive bridge will be closed this weekend
Drivers are being asked to find another way or prepare for delays on the Henday this weekend, because crews need to close a bridge over the North Saskatchewan River.
Out-of-control wildfire on Lower Mainland sees massive growth
A human-caused wildfire on the Lower Mainland has grown to an estimated 800 hectares and continues to burn out of control Wednesday, according to the BC Wildfire Service.
'You don't listen to renters': Vancouver Tenants Union disrupts housing announcement
Rental housing advocates interrupted an announcement by B.C.'s housing minister in Vancouver Wednesday morning to object to the provincial government's response to the affordability crisis.
Vancouver voice actors concerned about AI cloning voices without consent
Advances in artificial intelligence means software can generate accurate voice clones that sound just like the real thing, but that's putting some actors in a precarious position, including Vancouver's Bill Newton.
Future uncertain for residents of bulldozed Regina homeless camp
The dwellings of around a dozen Regina residents experiencing homelessness were bulldozed after calls from the property owner.
Less than 50% of Indigenous students graduate from provincial schools, report says
Indigenous graduation rates are sliding in the province, according to Saskatchewan’s provincial auditor.
Regina city council asks for debt limit increase
Regina city council has asked its administration to pursue permission from the Saskatchewan Municipal Board (SMB) to increase its debt limit to $780 million.