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How a political battle became a rallying cry for Canada’s trans community

Canada’s trans human rights bill C-16 has, finally, become the law of the land. To get there, the bill endured a 12-year-long struggle to drag the issue out from the shadows, endure a gauntlet of manufactured controversies, and through Canada’s arcane rules of Parliamentary procedure. It finally received royal assent on Monday night. That process, however, proved a formative experience for Canada’s transgender, gender non-binary, or genderfluid activists and advocates — more simply, the trans community — and provided a litany of lessons in activism, law-making, and politics. “C-16 enables a…

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Weed fraud: Are you getting cheated?

Many of the states that have legalized marijuana now require tests for potency and purity to ensure that consumers know exactly what they’re buying when they visit a dispensary. But the labs that conduct these tests are governed by rules that vary widely from state to state, and there are concerns within the industry that unscrupulous labs are operating without adequate oversight and colluding with growers to falsify results. VICE News visited a testing lab in Washington state, where we uncovered inaccurate labeling on a package of legal marijuana. We…

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After the “white doctor” tirade, doctors of colour discuss racism on the job

In the wake of a viral video showing a white woman demanding to see a “white doctor” in a Canadian clinic, VICE News reached out to doctors of colour to hear their reactions to the video, and how race affects their work. All four doctors we spoke to said the video was shocking, but not surprising, and that it touches on the racism they have experienced in their own practices. Some said the woman’s hostility and overt racism reflects a rise in xenophobia and hate crimes in Canada and the…

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Canadian sniper breaks world record by taking out Islamic State fighter from two miles away

A sniper with Canada’s elite special forces unit, the Canadian military’s answer to Seal Team Six, has smashed the world record for the longest confirmed kill. The unnamed soldier killed an Islamic State fighter from 3,540 metres away, the Canadian Armed Forces confirmed to VICE News — that’s about 2.2 miles. He took the shot from an apartment building somewhere in Iraq. The kill puts Canada back on the top spot of the world’s best snipers, a position that Canada is no stranger to. As of today, Canada holds the…

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Canadian man arrested over Michigan airport attack on police officer

Police in Flint, Michigan have arrested 50-year-old Canadian resident Amor Ftouhi over a knife attack at Bishop International Airport that sent one police officer to hospital. The FBI say they investigating the attack as an “act of terrorism.” Ftouhi allegedly stabbed Lt. Jeff Neville in the neck around 10 a.m. on Wednesday morning with a hunting knife before being subdued by officers on the scene. Neville was in stable condition as of Wednesday afternoon. Timothy Johnson, Flint Chief of Police, told reporters that Neville “never stopped fighting” and ultimately helped subdue Ftouhi. In an criminal complaint filed in a…

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National Aboriginal Day comes amid tragedy in Thunder Bay

For an afternoon, First Nations people in Thunder Bay tried to put out of mind the issues plaguing their communities — rampant racism, an allegedly negligent police force, and unanswered questions about young members of their communities who have recently been found dead in the city’s waterways — to celebrate their way of life. After a sunrise ceremony Wednesday, thousands gathered at Marina Park for National Aboriginal Day, hearing speeches from local leaders, including MP Patty Hadju, Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler, and Fort William First Nation Chief Peter Collins. A…

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Canada’s cyber spy agency is about to get a major upgrade

Canada’s main international cyber agency is gaining the power to launch cyber attacks worldwide to take action against terrorist organizations, state-sponsored hackers, and foreign governments. New legislation, tabled Tuesday, will give the Communications Security Establishment the power to do everything from targeting foreign hacking groups to taking out Islamic State propaganda. The new power will embolden CSE to conduct those cyber attacks on its own, but also give it authority to cooperate with the Canadian military to conduct cyber operations during military missions abroad. What remains unclear, however, is exactly…

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Two-spirit youth are reclaiming their identities and spaces to call their own

Ezra always felt out of place growing up part Mi’kmaq in the mostly white city of Peterborough, Ontario, a couple hours northeast of Toronto.   “As a child I was torn between knowing that I had Indigenous heritage and something that, I think, had been pushed in my family, which was Christianity,” said Ezra, who used to go by “she” and now, at 22, uses “they” pronouns. Ezra doesn’t like to talk about their parents — both of whom are of mixed European and Indigenous descent — but says neither…

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Montreal’s Catholic Church will fingerprint priests who work with children

In an attempt to protect young and vulnerable parishioners from abuse, the Catholic Church of Montreal will start fingerprinting all priests before they work with children. New rules announced this week will require priests to provide digital fingerprints, and expands on a pilot project called “Responsible Pastoral Ministry” launched within 10 churches in the city last year that imposed screening processes for those working and volunteering within the diocese. All churches in the jurisdiction will have to follow these rules, which prohibits an adult from being alone with children, by…

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