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Journalism

Hundreds Rally for Oil and Gas at Confederation Building

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Hundreds of people urgently demanded “political support” for the offshore oil and gas industry. But Premier Andrew Furey did not offer anything specific.

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No Safe Bet: Why Newfoundland & Labrador is Canada’s Casino Holdout

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In 2010, when Colliers International was listing the Battery Hotel and Suites for $15 million, they dared buyers to imagine alternate usages for the property—even those that went against provincial policy. “Newfoundland is one of only two Canadian provinces that does not have a provincially approved casino,” Colliers said in a brochure. “If this highly interesting situation changes, the site is sufficiently large to accommodate a Class A casino and hotel.” “Our policy doesn’t permit casinos in the province,” then-finance minister Tom Marshall told reporters at the time. “There’s been no change in that policy.” When asked if he’d reconsider the policy if a casino application was submitted, he was unequivocal: “No.” By 2014, Marshall was premier and Charlene Johnson, then-finance minister, suggested to reporters that they might be willing to consider a good offer. Saying the government would review proposals stopped far short of saying they would be approved,…

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Community Groups Urge NL to Waive Income Support Clawbacks

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The letter calls for a one-time change to the provincial Income and Employment Support Act to waive all penalties associated with receiving the CERB.

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NL CERB Clawbacks Push People into Poverty: Advocates

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Newfoundland & Labrador will be clawing back income support from anyone who received CERB. Advocates fear this will increase poverty and homelessness.

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NL Liberals to Purge “Potentially Fraudulent” Registrations

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The Dr. Andrew Furey Campaign expressed “heightened concerns” around party voter list after having its complaints against John Abbott dismissed.

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On Corporate Ties, Andrew Furey has Nothing to Hide

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Up to now, an important aspect of Andrew Furey’s recent professional life has received almost no mention at all: his corporate board directorships.

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In Newfoundland and Labrador, Black Lives Matter

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“We just started last week. I feel like this is the beginning of something.”

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Yarnbomber Aims to Lift Spirits in Outdoor Art Gallery

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Twillingate is in the midst of a yarnbombing that aims to lift spirits while encouraging safe physical distancing during the pandemic. Yarnbomber Nina Elliott has knit what she dubs “Newfoundland’s First Outdoor Art Gallery.” Elliott is the Rock Vandal, a Twillingate-transplant from Hamilton, Ontario, who uses yarn to create temporary street art. Her work oozes positivity, and during spring to early fall often adorns the clapboard structures around picturesque Notre Dame Bay. The Rock Vandal’s latest endeavour, which kicked off over the weekend, marks her biggest project yet. Her yarn bombs often show as stand-alone pieces. This time, she’s exhibiting her work at scale, featuring up to nine pieces that collectively conjure a common theme: uplifting spirits, while living under coronavirus. Partnering with the local recreation committee to raise awareness for the project, Elliott says the show is something she can do at a time when everyone’s usual lives remain…

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Family Physicians Frustrated with ‘Fee-for-Service’ Billing

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Fee-for-Service means longer wait-times, physical and mental stress for patients, and higher costs to the healthcare system—not ideal in a pandemic.

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COVID-19 Drives Increased Needs—and Help—for Homeless

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The money from the federal government will mean “we’re going to see our capacity extended beyond what we’ve ever seen in St. John’s.”

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Memorial Grad Students Evicted for Their Own Safety

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GSU consulted with public health officials who warned them the Feild Hall residence could not be kept safe.

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“Stay Away:” Northern Communities Brace for Covid-19

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Last Wednesday, after a meeting with heads of government, health officials, police, and even the local fire department, Joe Dicker sat down and wrote a letter asking people to stay out of his town. The AngajukKak (or mayor) of Nain asked that anyone planning on coming to town—which sits on the north coast of Labrador in Nunatsiavut—to please consider the nature of their visit. If it wasn’t absolutely necessary, he asked that they “stay away.” The next day, the Nunatsiavut government issued its own directive, asking that all non-essential travel to and between Labrador’s Inuit communities be cancelled.  “Pandemics have had catastrophic impacts in Nunatsiavut in the past, and all efforts must be taken to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus to all Labrador Inuit communities,” the release said.  Nunatsiavut is under the same public health emergency as the rest of Newfoundland and Labrador, as officials scramble to…

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Land Protectors Occupy Natural Resource Minister’s Office

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Though framed as anti-pipeline protests, Wet’suwet’en reveals deeper national conflicts—what Minister Carolyn Bennett called “150 years of broken promises.”

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Constabulary and Critics Continue Tense Coexistence

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As International Women’s Day approaches, it’s been nearly a year since Jenny Wright stepped down as Executive Director of the St. John’s Status of Women Council. In October, the Independent revealed RNC and provincial government involvement in the sequence of events leading to her departure. Since that time, there have been a range of responses from community organizations, Royal Newfoundland Constabulary, and state officials. Five months after the story emerged, and nearly a year after Wright stepped down, the Independent takes a look at what’s transpired in the wake of the revelations. The provincial government has maintained clear support for key figures involved in the overreach, including Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Chief Joe Boland and now-Deputy Minister for Status of Women Linda Ross. But many important relationships across the community remain strained. The St. John’s Status of Women Council, as well as the Provincial Action Network for the Status of Women…

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Deflated but Unbroken, Dwight Ball Finally Bounces

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With the premier out of the picture, it is harder to hide the hungry abyss at the heart of Newfoundland and Labrador politics.

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Reckoning With Colonial Violence in Canada

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Those who assembled on Saturday in solidarity with Wet’suwet’en are among thousands taking part in ongoing blockades and demonstrations across Canada.

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Milestone or Millstone?: Unpacking the Premier’s “Plan”

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Several days after the premier’s “significant announcement,” neither the plan—or Dwight Ball’s political future—is clear.

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Unmasking Donny Dooley: Newfoundland’s Most Wanted Troll

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For years, an anonymous Twitter account mocked accident victims, berated grieving parents, and terrorized women. Today the Independent removes his mask.

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A Glimpse Inside: A Day at Her Majesty’s Penitentiary

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Advocates say a replacement for Her Majesty’s Penitentiary—dating to 1859—will improve safety for both inmates & officers. But how much longer can it wait?

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The Moment that Joined John Crosbie, the Cod, and Us

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Lt.-Gov. John Crosbie

The 1992 Cod Moratorium was the toughest political decision of Crosbie’s career. The Independent remembers the man, the moment, and the decision.

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