Nation in Brief

University of Winnipeg professors preparing to strike

Negotiations between the University of Winnipeg and its faculty are stalled again, with the latter set to walk out on Thursday if talks do not continue. CBC News reported that Saturday’s discussions fell through when the two parties broached the topic of wages. A university spokesperson said the salary raise demanded by faculty (8.4 per cent over three years) would cause a 10 per cent raise in tuition. However, a faculty association spokesperson denied the claim. The faculty originally set a strike deadline of March 9, but later extended it by a day. They have been without a contract for a year.


Party on, Ryerson U

Ryerson is the latest Canadian university to face the unintended consequences of merrymaking on campus. The Canadian Press reported that a February party in the Toronto university’s residence ended up incurring a $4,000 cleaning bill. University officials are now saying they will crack down on out-of-control behaviour. Student housing manager Chad Nuttall said they are hoping people come forward with information so they can assign the bill to those who caused the damages. If not, the university is considering the implementation of community billing. With the incident, Ryerson joins the ranks of schools like the University of Toronto (access to common room temporarily banned), the University of British Columbia (weekly beer night cancelled) and Queen’s University (homecoming cancelled until 2014) to be faced with stricter rules because of comparable incidents.


Having children – not all it’s cracked up to be?

Researchers at the University of Waterloo are saying that parents idealize the positive effects of having children, the Toronto Sun reported. The study, published in Psychological Science last year, divided 80 parents into two groups. The first group was given literature emphasizing the cost of raising a child (approximately $185,000), while the other was given material expounding on the long-t erm benefits of parenthood. Follow-up interviews revealed the first group was more likely to talk about how much happiness their children had brought them, indicating they were trying to justify their financial cost.  The researchers suggest the phenomenon is a recent one. They say it originated in the 20th century as children began to contribute less financially to the household. My mother has assured me the study is nonsense.


Mad cow disease found in Albertan dairy cow

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency revealed on Friday that a case of mad cow disease was found in an Albertan dairy cow last month.  The owner reported abnormalities in the cow to a local veterinarian as part of the National BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy) Surveillance program. A CFIA spokesperson told the Globe and Mail that they confirmed the finding on Feb. 18. No part of the animal entered the human food chain. Mad cow is spread through feed contaminated with infected animal proteins. The discovery is not expected to affect beef exports. The case marks the 18th case of BSE found in Canadian cows since 2003, when an outbreak of the disease devastated the beef export industry.



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