5 Things To Know Today
Blues legend B.B. King dead at 89. The first long weekend is finally here. Toronto police to unveil body cameras at news conference. EQAO testing officially postponed. Day 2 of hearings on teacher strikes. +**City to raise rainbow flag for International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. **Brady files appeal of suspension in ‘deflate-gate.’**
BLUES LEGEND B.B. KING DEAD AT 89
B.B. King has died at the age of 89 in Las Vegas, Nevada. According to his lawyer, the Blues legend passed away around 9:40 p.m. PDT Thursday while sleeping at his home. King sold millions of records internationally and was inducted to both the Blues Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He won his 15th Grammy award in 2009 in the traditional blues album category for “One Kind Favor.” At 6 a.m. this morning, Eric Clapton posted a tribute video on his Facebook page that read:
BB King a dear friend and inspiration to me….
THE FIRST LONG WEEKEND IS FINALLY HERE
It is time for Canadians to shed the shackles of winter as we enter the first long weekend of summer. It’ll be a bit cool to start today with a high of 15°C, but by the holiday Monday, it’ll warm up as high as 27°C and we could have a humidex in the low 30’s. With the long weekend, it means plent of people bugging out of the city. The OPP’s Kerry Shmidt says they’ll again be targeting the big-four issues: distracted, impaired and aggressive driving, along with people not wearing seatbelts. The OPP are also reminding boaters to beware of the safety rules for being on the water. Boating deaths in Ontario last year hit a 10-year low, with only 20 people losing their lives. Of those 20, 17 were not wearing a life jacket.
TORONTO POLICE TO UNVEIL BODY CAMERAS AT NEWS CONFERENCE
Toronto Police will be unveiling their new body-cameras at a media conference today. The pilot project is slated to last a full year for 100 officers working in Traffic Services, Toronto Anti-Violence Intervention Strategy as well as 43 and 55 Divisions. Officers using the camera equipment will have to assemble it from three pieces and following the trial run Toronto Police will assess the pros and cons moving forward with a decision that best serves the force. Mayor John Tory says he feels that public feedback is required and would like to make sure lots of questions are asked before the year-long project concludes, so they can make an appropriate judgement call when the time comes to decide if the cameras are worth keeping. A number of police forces across the continent are already using the body camera equipment. In 2014, U.S. President Barack Obama supplied $263 million in funding for approximately 50,000 cameras.
EQAO TESTING OFFICIALLY POSTPONED
The Education Quality and Accountability Office says they are officially postponing assessments for grades 3 and 6 due to ongoing work-to-rule strike by elementary teachers. Both Peel District School Board and the Toronto District School Board confirmed the news via Twitter. On May 11th, the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario called the work-to-rule, saying it’s “phase one” of a strike, meaning teachers are still in classrooms and hosting extra curricular activities. Scheduled field trips are also not affected by the labour dispute. ETFO President Sam Hammond says the strike action is incremental, and will continue until bargaining issues are resolved or it’s decided further action is required. EQAO testing were scheduled to begin between May 25th – June 5th. Grade 9 math testing is still scheduled to happen between May 28th and June 12, except in Peel, Durham, and Sudbury/Rainbow, where secondary teachers are still on strike.
DAY 2 OF HEARING ON TEACHER STRIKES
The Labour Relations Board is entering day two of hearings pertaining to a decision that will determine whether or not strikes by public high school teachers in Durham, Peel and Sudbury are illegal. The initial hearing was somewhat unproductive with a slow start over procedural issues on Thursday. Students in Durham Region have been out of class for a month now and both Peel Region and Sudbury are closing in on three weeks. The boards claim that the teachers union is orchestrating local strikes on class sizes and funding in hopes of proving that those actions are illegal.
City To Raise Rainbow Flag For International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia
The rainbow flag will be flying high at city hall today as Mayor John Tory marks International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. The flag rising happens at noon.
Brady Files Appeal Of Suspension In ‘Deflate-Gate’
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has turned down the players’ union request to have an independent arbitrator hear Tom Brady’s appeal of his 4-game suspension over the deflate-gate scandal. Goodell will hear the case personally.