toronto police g20

Morning Brew: Bear sightings, worker hazing in Mississauga, former Hydro One CEO fights for higher pension, Ron Maclean helps in river rescue, G20: video surveillance galore, Novotel pickle, Via Rail avoiding Union Station

Wild bears are getting a little too close for comfort in small communities in north Durham. While some residents are seeing the appearances as bringing "big excitement in a small town," and casually following the 400-pound beasts around for fun, others seem to be more fearful - as they probably should.

There's been an added twist to the City of Mississauga worker hazing/abuse scandal. It turns out that the assistant supervisor at the Transportation and Works Department, who allegedly has been condoning unacceptable worker embarrassment and punishment strategies, is also one of the highest paid in the City - raking in a salary of over $130,000. The Ministry of Labour didn't look all that deeply into the allegations because the City had already done and investigation and concluded that what was going on wasn't much more than horseplay.

Eleanor Clitheroe, former Hydro One CEO, is taking the provincial government to task over her monthly pension. The government is committed to paying her a whopping $25K per month in pension, but she's fighting for $33K per month (a figure that is more than double what the average pension pays out in a full year). Oh, the gold-plated bingo dabbers and dentures I'd buy if I were collecting $1000 per friggin' day in my retirement years...

Authorities held a pre-G20 security parade for the media yesterday, including a demonstration of the controversial sound cannon. The massive joint security effort involves the RCMP, OPP, Peel Police, Toronto Police, and the Canadian Forces. All of these organizations likely seized the opportunity to get new gear and training they otherwise would have a hard time justifying, which might have something to do with the $1B price tag being put on the security effort.

If anything crazy does go down, at least we know there's a good chance there'll be video footage of the mayhem. Pretty much every intersection in and around the secure area has been fitted with police cameras. The National Post has a map detailing the locations of the rigs, which will be removed following the G20 meetings.

Hotel workers are threatening to strike just ahead of the G20 meetings, but fortunately the only hotel that would affect the summit is the Novotel on the Esplanade. The French delegation may in a but of a pickle of a situation, and it'll be interesting to see if they're moved to a different hotel, or if this serves as enough leverage to act as a bargaining chip in contract talks.

Via Rail has announced that they won't be using Union Station as their Toronto train passenger hub during the G20 meetings. Instead, they'll use stations in Oakville, Brampton, Oshawa and north Toronto and employ shuttle buses between these temporary hubs to get connecting passengers around. Sounds like a bit of a travel nightmare in the making.

And in case you needed further proof that CBC sportscaster and Hockey Night in Canada personality Ron Maclean is total awesomesauce, check out the story of how he played a role in rescuing a man from potential death in a river in Delaware.

Photo: untitled by picturenarrative, member of the blogTO Flickr pool.


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