Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION
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Re-covering old news
It is disconcerting to see the Free Press devote a whole page to an in-depth analysis of Phil Sheegl's resume -- again (Sheegl shy on key credential, Nov. 7).
Bartley Kives dredges up a lot of moot information related to an issue that is a done deal and should be left in the past. The opinions regarding the inappropriateness of the decision to promote Sheegl to city CAO have been expressed by various levels of civic leaders and readers for weeks now.
Such detailed coverage of someone who is a reminder of the city's mistakes should not be allotted such prominent attention and space, especially since this has already been done.
In the priority list that is the ongoing spending and taxation tug-of-war at Winnipeg city hall, the severance package that Mayor Sam Katz's close friend, business partner and former inexperienced (some would say unqualified) CAO received represents the proposed taxation on 40 newly constructed homes.
Although the province will not support the mayor's efforts to impose a new tax (Proposed house tax unjustified, Nov. 7), there is a light at the end of his dank tunnel of questionable political choice.
In lieu of no new-development taxation, I'm sure city council would not object to awarding Sheegl the naming rights if he were to donate back his generous severance toward the construction of the libraries, community centres and -- irony of ironies -- fire halls the mayor claims will eventually be needed.
There is a piece missing in the administration of justice over the Clarke Harding case (Sentenced to 5 years for 3 lives, Nov. 5), in which he was sentenced to five years in prison for the death of three people while he was driving drunk.
What's missing is bringing Harding and some of his family members together with the families of the victims, in a planned and carefully mediated series of meetings.
The benefit of the meetings is immense for the victims, who, afterwards, would be able to move on with their lives with much of their anger and confusion addressed. Harding would benefit from this, too, by having faced those affected by this tragic event and by having declared his profound regret for his part in it.
This process is called "restorative justice," and there are many trained mediators in Winnipeg who are capable of facilitating this step that helps bring healing and peace back to the community.
Let us add this piece so that it becomes a standard element in the administration of justice.
Expanding child care a must
Manitoba Jobs and the Economy Minister Theresa Oswald needs to ensure a significant expansion of the licensed early-learning and child-care system is included in her plan to create more jobs (Throne speech to focus on economy, jobs: Oswald, Nov. 5).
It's likely that many of the 75,000 new workers Manitoba plans to add will be parents with young children. Your Aug. 17 article on welfare recipients states that 25,400 are single parents with children struggling to find affordable child care so they can return to work. On Nov. 5, the CBC reported some parents in southwestern Manitoba drive to Saskatchewan for child care. As of Sept. 30, there are 11,145 names on the online child care waiting list, over 3,000 more than when the registry was introduced in 2011.
The availability of licensed child care is the backbone of all early learning, social and employment programs and must be part of core infrastructure planning in Manitoba.
Manitoba Child Care Association
For years -- and especially since 9/11 -- racial profiling has been alive and well in North America. Now there is a new type of profiling, political profiling.
With the financial abuses by Pamela Wallin, Mike Duffy and Patrick Brazeau, the electoral abuses by Vic Toews, the drug abuse by Rob Ford, the dissembling of the Manitoba NDP government and the bullying of Stephen Harper, the public now assumes all politicians to be suspect.
Much like dark-skinned people at the airport who (allegedly) are looked at more suspiciously by security enforcement, politicians everywhere are guilty until proven innocent. But unlike racial profiling, I think this is a good type of profiling.
And until they prove us wrong, we'll glare at them in public places and whisper about them behind their backs.
Bombers need consistency
Kudos to letter writer Denis Fitzpatrick (Give Burke a chance, Nov. 2). I have to agree with every word he says.
With the exception of CJOB's Bob Irving and Kelly Moore and the Free Press's Doug Brown, there aren't too many sports media people whose comments on the Bombers or the Jets are worth paying attention to.
Bombers have had five coaches in seven years, and some of these wing-nuts want to go for six in eight. We have paid too many people not to coach, manage or be CEO of the team. If we bring in a new coach, the chances of having a winning season next year are slim to none.
Give Burke the players he needs (especially at quarterback and offensive line) and let him develop them. He deserves that.
If he doesn't succeed, instead of firing him, why not reassign him as head of scouting or similar position. At least we would get something for the money.
The Winnipeg Football Club would be in a better financial position if we had done that in the past.
Tim Burke has to go, if only for his excessive use of field goal attempts (i.e. wasted third downs). I'm no expert but even I can tell that the object of football is winning the game, not just scoring points.
If you don't have the confidence and sense to let your players attempt touchdowns from the 10-yard line, particularly in the last four minutes of the game, then you should let someone else lead them.
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 8, 2013 A14
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