WiTOPoli Weekly: Friday, January 16, 2015

A roundup of some of the latest news in women, Toronto, and/or politics this week. What stories did you read this week? Tell us in the comments.

  • With a disciplinary tribunal currently underway regarding police actions during the G20, a judge ruled this week that Police Chief Bill Blair cannot be compelled to testify. The tribunal is reviewing charges against Supt. Mark Fenton for unlawful arrest and discreditable conduct for ordering mass protestor arrests.
  • After a week in which 4 homeless people died, the city has acquired 20 hotel rooms to be used as extra shelter space if usual shelters reach over 90% capacity.
  • A CBC report revealed that a Mimico condo developer failed to deliver on donations promised to the community, prompting John Tory to question the level of oversight for contributions made under Section 37. When new construction is approved, developers can make donations under Section 37 and it is often left up to the local councillor to decide where the money goes, but there is very little accountability in place to track these donations.
  • The TDSB has one month to respond to a critical report released this week detailing its need to review its governance practices.
  • This week, one of the two young men who plead guilty in the Retaeh Parsons case was only sentenced to one year probation. The other young man was previously sentenced in November with a conditional discharge. Both cannot be named because they were minors at the time crime was committed.
  • After reviewing the misogynist Facebook posts by Dalhousie Dentistry students, Halifax police will not pursue criminal charges.
  • On Monday, a report was released by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, outlining Canada’s obligation to address the socio-economic factors which perpetuate violence against indigenous women. The report emphasizes the importance of working with indigenous women leaders to address these problems, and also supports the call for a national inquiry into the murdered and missing indigenous women.
  • Torontonian Laura Reid is pushing to build a database where users can anonymously self-report their sexual assault experiences. Reid also started the website Whenyoureready.org , an online community where survivors can anonymously share their stories.
  • Health Canada has pushed back its decision on whether to approve an abortion drug called mifepristone. The drug has been used in 57 countries for decades and could provide women with easier access to abortions in remote parts of Canada, or provinces like P.E.I. where no surgical facilities exist.
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