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by The Concordian October 4, 2011
Safe injection site to remain open
The first government-sanctioned drug injection clinic will remain open, Canada’s top court has ruled. In a decision that opens the door for other safe injection sites to be set up across Canada, the Supreme Court said the InSite clinic, located in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, should remain open, despite the federal government’s view that such sites foster addiction. The court ruled that British Columbia cannot offer health services that breach federal laws, and that shutting the site down would violate the right of heroin addicts to access health care at the facility. The site was in danger of closing after the federal health minister decided in 2008 not to renew their special exemption under federal drug laws. The site has provided medical supervision for the injection of illegally bought heroin since 2003. Nearly 12,000 people visit the site annually, which is located in one of Vancouver’s poorest neighbourhoods.


Message in a bottle
A retired Prince Edward Island fisherman who has been throwing bottles into the sea with messages in them for over 15 years has received thousands of responses from all over the world. CTV reported that Harold Hackett, 58, started the hobby in 1996 while tuna fishing. Since then, he has dropped over 5,000 bottles into the Gulf of St. Lawrence in the hopes that they will reach the Atlantic Ocean. Hackett has received responses from places like the U.K., Germany and as far as Africa and South America. The fisherman photocopies handwritten messages, dates them, and puts them in glass bottles. He plans to continue the practice as long as he can walk down to the beach.


Instructors at UofA let cheating go unreported
Thirty-nine per cent of instructors and 26 per cent of teaching assistants at the University of Alberta have let a case of cheating go by without reporting it, according to the results of the institution’s Academic Integrity Survey. The Gateway reported that 38 per cent of instructors say the effectiveness of the university’s academic disciplinary policy is “low” or “very low.” Instructors also report feeling unprepared to discipline students. In response, academic integrity coordinator Chris Hackett suggested instructors be given a level of decision making in disciplining the students. The survey recommended the university consider using a cheating detection software like Turnitin, something the student union has opposed.


Pizza not honey
Conservation officers in Whistler, B.C. are on the lookout for a black bear after it broke into a pizza parlour in the ski destination on Monday. According to the Vancouver Sun, the bear grabbed a beef and blue cheese pizza off the display counter at Fat Tony’s in Whistler Village and started gobbling it down. The two employees working at the time eventually made a noise to scare it off. The officers are looking to set up a trap near the restaurant. The Whistler Question is reporting that this season will herald the worst berry crop in almost twenty years, which has lead researchers to predict a rise in black bear activity in the village.


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