Roundup: Pictou student housing plans underway, COVID update as school masking ends, South Shore duo wins provincial title, provincial government spending $1M on rink upgrades
Liverpool's Josey Huskins and Calla Brown recently claimed their division's provincial badminton title. Photo: Submitted
By Trevor J. Adams 25 May 2022 Share this story
Plus: Facing sexism and war, a Halifax doctor travelled around the globe and never stopped helping people
Education minister Becky Druhan’s decision to end masking in schools took effect yesterday, despite the continuing spread of COVID-19.
She offers little rationale for the move, beyond noting in a press release that governments across Canada have similarly cut protections. A memo from school administrators (shared by a teacher on Twitter) says wearing a mask is “a personal choice … Individuals may not request that others wear a mask.”
But the Canadian Medical Association Journal cautions that choice comes with big consequences: “School systems with mask mandates have a lower incidence of COVID-19 amongst students and staff … The benefit extends to the community, with fewer cases.”
The World Health Organization tallies 357,682 new COVID-19 cases around the globe in the last 24 hours, but the real number of ill people is likely much higher, as many jurisdictions (including Nova Scotia) are withholding daily data, making it impossible to get a full picture of the disease’s spread.
So far, COVID is known to have has killed 6,279,667 people worldwide, including 40,695 in Canada and 378 Nova Scotians. World Health Organization officials add that those are only the deaths directly from COVID. When they tally deaths that doctors could have otherwise prevented had COVID not exacerbated an existing condition, the toll skyrockets to 14.9 million.
Local history: Dr. Florence Murray
Born in Pictou Landing in 1894, Florence Murray was a nonconformist from her earliest days. She wanted to be a minister, a goal abandoned when an official told her the Presbyterian Church would not accept women ministers, so instead she decided to help people by coming a doctor.
She was the only woman in her class. In her fourth year of studies, the Halifax Explosion hit, and she was among the medical students providing life-saving care to victims. That set the pattern for the rest of her life, as she travelled to some of the world’s most ravaged and devastated places, caring for the victims of war and brutality.
Pictou student housing plans underway
As the housing crisis continues, the principal of the Pictou campus of the Nova Scotia Community College is excited that work is about to begin on a $12.4-million government project to create residences for about 50 students.
“We’re the only rural campus this year that’s been chosen (for funding) with the expectation if will open in the fall of 2023,” said Mann. “We have a very aggressive building schedule.”
South Shore duo wins provincial title
The Liverpool middle-school tandem of Josey Huskins and Calla Brown won the School Sport Nova Scotia provincial badminton championships in girls’ doubles last month.
They’re among the many young athletes around Nova Scotia returning to competition, after two years of pandemic delays and cancellations.
Government upgrading rinks
The provincial government recently announced plans to spend $1 million upgrading 25 skating rinks around Nova Scotia. Health minister Michelle Thompson sees a lot of value in that expenditure, pointing to the rink in her community of Antigonish, which is getting $68,400.
“The Antigonish Arena is a space for staying physically active and building communities,” she says. “I’m very excited that families will continue to benefit from the rink thanks to this funding.”
Spread the word
Know a community group, good cause, or inspiring local story we should share? Email the editor.
Trevor has been a magazine editor and journalist in Halifax since 1998. He's won multiple Atlantic Journalism Awards and was shortlisted for the Tom Fairley Award for Editorial Excellence in 2014.
Plus: The year of living dangerously — looking back at a tumultuous 2022 and ahead to a brighter 2023 The Para Hockey World Cup, initially slated for 2020 and cancelled twice due to COVID-19, re [...]
Plus: Turning to local food options as corporate grocery profits soar COVID-19 killed 27 Nova Scotians in October, according to the provincial government's monthly update. That's a dip in the deat [...]
Plus: Cooling, not freezing — how stubborn inflation and soaring interest rates are affecting the local housing market A Port Hawkesbury community group that helps refugees from war-ravaged Ukra [...]