Roundup: COVID update, attacks on Native fishers worsen, police look for more victims in C.B. sexual assault case, Pictou woos health care workers

As of yesterday (Oct. 13), Nova Scotia continues to have four known cases of COVID-19, according to the latest government update. One person is hospitalized in ICU. To date, the province has had 101,750 negative test results, 1,092 confirmed cases, and 65 deaths.

Nationally, government statistics indicate that Canada currently has 19,741 COVID cases, including 8,087 in Quebec, 5,946 in Ontario, 2,615 in Alberta, and 82 in New Brunswick.

Attacks on First Nations fishers intensify
Ku’ku’kwes News is reporting that commercial fishers and their supporters invaded a lobster pound in Southwestern Nova Scotia last night. Multiple reports (here and here) say RCMP did little as the attackers screamed threats and racial slurs, threw rocks, destroyed property, set fires, and poisoned harvested lobster.

As this recent Halifax Magazine story by Ameeta Vohra explains, Native crews are engaged in a legal and treaty-protected fishery. Law professor Sherry Pictou says the backlash, largely from whites, has a simple explanation. “Racism is intersecting with greed,” she says. “It’s really hard to look at one without the other… Racism comes out unfortunately to protect a certain section of society and their rights to the resources. That is what’s hard to take at times.”

At the time of publishing, neither fisheries minister Bernadette Jordan nor the RCMP have commented on the latest violence or what they’ll do to enforce the law.

Margaret Mauger (left) and Vida Woodworth. Photo: Raissa Tetanish

Moving past trauma
This province has experienced a lot of trauma in 2020 and Margaret Mauger and Vida Woodworth aim to help Nova Scotians cope with their new After Trauma Empowerment network.

“We really saw need in the community for this type of work,” says Mauger, an experienced therapist. “Where do people in this area go [when they] have experienced trauma?” They’re offering support, therapy, education, and referrals to other services, if they can’t meet a client’s needs. Raissa Tetanish reports for Hub Now.

Police looking for more sexual assault victims
Nineteen-year-old Hunter James Smith of Sugar Camp, Inverness Co., faces a slew of charges, including sexual assault, sexual interference, luring a child, and indecent exposure. Local police have identified two victims but believe there are others.

“Anyone who feels they could be a victim or has questions or information is encouraged to contact the Port Hawkesbury RCMP,” says this recent story from The Reporter.

Welcome home to Pictou County
Organizers hope a new community guide book will help attract doctors and health-care workers to Pictou County. “I really needed something tangible I could send,” says Nicole LeBlanc, project navigator with Healthy Pictou County. “This document… showcases all corners of our community and gives people a good starting point to see what we’re all about.”

Many locals contributed to the project. “How could you read this through and not fall in love with Pictou County?” says Cindy MacKinnon, managing director of the local tourism-marketing group. “The document is filled… with local images from many of our talented local photographers.” The Pictou Advocate has more.

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This story was originally published in Halifax Magazine.

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