Roundup: Kids’ educators demand fair pay, expert worries about post-COVID symptoms, solar-power battle costs Mahone Bay $40K, 4-H marks centenary

For many opponents, having the word "Halifax" on their community signs is a hated reminder of amalgamation. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Plus: When four became one and Halifax Regional Municipality was born — amid hurt feelings and much debate

Early childhood educators in Nova Scotia start the job earning slightly more than they’d make busing tables or stocking shelves in a grocery store: $15 per hour, with no benefits or pensions.

And now, many in the industry are demanding that Houston government fulfill a promise to pay them fairly.

“It has been almost more than a year where we signed the agreement,” says Bayview Child Development Centre director Jighisha Patel, who has 10 years of experience and works part time at Costco to make ends meet. “We have had enough of promises.”

Jake Boudrot has the story for the Reporter.

Life after COVID-19
Researchers in British Columbia say that about two-thirds have Canadians have now had COVID at least once, leading to hopes that post-infection antibodies and vaccinations will combine to better protect people against the disease’s worst effects.

But there’s a risky strategy, cautions Dr. David Naylor, co-chair of the federal government’s COVID task force.

“The growth in hybrid immunity is a decidedly mixed blessing,” he tells CBC. “It signals substantial ongoing spread … That in turn means more people with post-COVID symptoms of variable severity and duration.” 

The World Health Organization reports 300,337 confirmed new COVID cases around the globe in the last 24 hours. So far, COVID is known to have killed at least 6,495,110 people, including 44,347 in Canada and 507 Nova Scotians.

John Savage ordered the merger of four municipalities to form HRM in 1996. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Birth of a Super City Region
To opponents of the move, it’s always seemed fitting that Halifax Regional Municipality was officially born on April Fool’s Day 1996. A diktat from then-premier John Savage’s government forced the merger, leaving many citizens with concerns about how the new municipal behemoth would represent their communities.

More than two decades later, those concerns are unabated.

“I still view myself as someone that lives in Dartmouth, that grew up in Dartmouth,” says Dartmouth resident and historian David Jones, who was in Grade 1 in 1996. “That’s not to pretend that HRM doesn’t exist, but Dartmouth means so much to me … So I worry — as a local historian and as a lifelong resident of Dartmouth — that amalgamation, that Halifax Regional Municipality, has taken away, to some extent, Dartmouth’s identity.” 

In her latest Unravel Halifax history column, Katie Ingram looks back at the birth of HRM and the concerns that linger.

Big cost for solar-power battle
Mahone Bay’s town government spent $40,000 (plus taxes) on lawyers in a prolonged dispute over a new solar-power site. The opponents had requested a judicial review of the town’s approval of the project, claiming it wasn’t a reasonable interpretation of land-use rules and was outside the development officer’s scope of authority.

As legal bills mounted, with the group spending “well over” $10,000 of their own money, the opponents withdrew their challenge.

Keith Corcoran reports for LighthouseNow.

A century of 4-H
After two years of pandemic disruptions, the Pictou-North Colchester Exhibition returned last weekend, giving the local 4-H club a chance to celebrate its 100th birthday.

Pictou County Warden Robert Parker connects Queen Elizabeth II and her personal qualities to how 4-H members accomplish so much as adults.

“She would have been a great 4-H leader,” he says, noting her strong association with agriculture. “Why 4-H does so well is partly because of the passion of the leaders. It’s so valuable to the country. So many young people have gone through here.”

Steve Goodwin has more for the Pictou Advocate.

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