Roundup: 138 COVID cases, Desmond Inquiry finally set to resume, workshop shares Mi’kmaq culture, student lauded for Lunenburg poem

Photo: Tourism Nova Scotia

Yesterday (Nov. 30), public health officials reported 16 new cases of COVID-19 in Nova Scotia, raising the total to 138 known active cases. Fifteen of the new cases are in Central Zone, the other is the school-based case in the Western Zone first reported on Nov. 29.

Nova Scotia Health Authority labs did 3,054 tests Nov. 29, with 628 tests administered at a rapid-testing pop-up site in Dartmouth, yielding six positive results.

“We continue to see strong interest in the asymptomatic pop-up rapid testing locations,” says Premier Stephen McNeil in a press release. “We are also seeing impressive test numbers at the labs, a reflection of the hard work of staff there. These are important pieces of our collective effort to contain the virus.”

An update with McNeil and Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health, is scheduled for 3 p.m. today.

Desmond Inquiry resuming in February
Nova Scotia judiciary spokesperson Jennifer Stairs promises the Desmond Inquiry will resume, but not until mid-February. The inquiry is exploring the circumstances surrounding retired soldier Lionel Desmond’s murder of his family and subsequent suicide.

The inquiry began in January and paused in March when the pandemic hit. It was supposed to continue in May. Stairs attributes the delay to public health distancing rules. “It soon became apparent the inquiry could not proceed in Guysborough,” she says. “Judge Zimmer worked with the Nova Scotia Department of Justice—Court Services division to review alternate sites.”

That process apparently took six months. Drake Lowthers has more for The Reporter.

Cycling in all seasons
More Haligonians are biking than ever before, and many will continue to do so through the winter. Jeff White and his family are experienced cyclists, but he worries about the safety of new riders.

“[Drivers] don’t always see us; it doesn’t matter how bright my light is, or how loud my clothing is—people in cars just don’t notice bikes,” White explains. “This is why we needed separated bike lanes so that people who aren’t comfortable riding in traffic as I am, feel just as comfortable using their bike as transportation.”

In this new Halifax Magazine feature, White joins a new cyclist to talk with Ameeta Vohra about what HRM can do to encourage more people to use this healthy and environmentally-friendly mode of transportation.

Sharing ancient teachings
Carolyn Landry and her sister Neenie are always on the go, criss-crossing Nova Scotia to share traditional Mi’kmaq handcraft workshops, including a recent drum and moccasin making sessions in Pictou. They want to ensure that the traditional skills that sustained their ancestors endure but the philosophies underpinning them are equally important.

“There are seven ancient teachings Aboriginal people have: respect, love, wisdom, honesty, truth, humility, and courage,” says Carolyn Landry. “Whenever I do any workshop at all, that’s a part of it because I have to honour… everything that’s involved.” Jackie Jardine has the story for The Pictou Advocate.

Madison Jones

Student lauded for Lunenburg poem
Fifteen-year-old Madison Jones is drawing praise for her poem “Town of Wonder,” which earned a spot in an upcoming Poetry Institute of Canada anthology featuring young writers from across the country.

“Of the thousands of entries, only the best appear in this anthology,” says teacher Donna Sampson, who is also related to Jones. “We are very proud of the young lady she has become.” Gayle Wilson reports for LighthouseNow.

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This story was originally published in Halifax Magazine.

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