May unveils last-chance Brexit bill in wake of angry public ‘milkshaking’ of politicians
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The U.K. prime minister unveiled several new tweaks to a bill that has already been rejected on three occasions, saying it is the “last chance” for MPs to uphold the results of the 2015 Brexit referendum.
Canada’s approach to couples when it comes to housing patients in care facilities would be unheard of in places like Sweden.
It also contains blandishments for the opposition, including strengthened legal protections for workers’ rights and the environment in a post-E.U. Britain, and the promise of a parliamentary vote on a second Brexit referendum, but only if MPs first agree to May’s divorce deal.
Dear people of Scotland. <br><br>We’re selling milkshakes all weekend. <br><br>Have fun. <br><br>Love BK <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/justsaying?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#justsaying</a>
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Canada’s approach to couples when it comes to housing patients in care facilities would be unheard of in places like Sweden, reporter David Common writes.
To some, it’s inhumane. In most of Canada, it’s routine practice.
Martha Farnell has just been separated from her husband after 66 years together. Willard has dementia and, after a recent fall, can no longer live at home in Calgary. So he has been moved into a long-term care facility.
Martha worries it is the beginning of his end.
“He is just going to deteriorate so fast without me,” she told us tearfully. “I do everything for him.”
Martha is happy for the help, but she is facing a dilemma many older Canadians will eventually confront. To get the help, they have to live apart.
She’s asked for a room for two, but they are rare — and Martha is healthy. “They say there is nothing wrong with me.”
In other countries — like Sweden — that thinking is incomprehensible. It’s also against the rules. If couples want to stay together, the system requires it.
We visited a home in the town of Örebro to meet one such couple, Torsten and Nancy Stavdal, who share a small apartment in a long-term care home.
“I would not feel calm if I was at home and Torsten was here,” Nancy told us.
He had a stroke, which left him unable to speak and impaired his mobility. Nancy is still his primary caregiver, but with help available from the facility’s staff at all hours when she wants it.
She can still cook, or they can go together to the in-house restaurant. If she goes out, care staff will watch over her husband.
“I think it means even more for him that we can be together.”
Companionship can do more than reduce loneliness. And other couples in the same facility say there is no question they should be able to stay together — especially in life’s final chapter.
Sweden’s approach to accommodating dementia patients doesn’t stop at double-occupancy care facilities. Just outside Stockholm, a new initiative launched by the country’s Queen in partnership with Ikea and Skanska, an engineering giant, is building SilviaBo (Silvia is the much-revered Queen, who has dedicated her recent life to work around people with dementia). Together, they have built the first batch of dementia-friendly couples housing.
The floors can detect falls. Mirrors are covered up, so as not to alarm someone with dementia who would be surprised at their own aged face. Water faucets have timed shut-offs. Knobs and appliances have an old-style look, to help transport residents to a time they’d be more likely to remember.
In short, it’s designed to keep dementia sufferers calm, and to allow some degree of independence to last longer.
Back in Calgary, Martha Farnell is still trying to find a home where she and Willard can be together. If they were in Sweden, it’s likely they already would be.
– David Common
WATCH: The story about couples dealing with long-term care, coming soon on The National on CBC Television and streamed online
A few words on …
Why pictures are no longer worth 1,000 words.
Pulitzer Prize-winning war photographer Lynsey Addario says it’s getting harder to make an impact with images in the current political climate, but documenting the truth is more important than ever. <a href=”https://twitter.com/adriearsenault?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@adriearsenault</a> <a href=”https://t.co/U9bZPXi0j4″>https://t.co/U9bZPXi0j4</a> <a href=”https://t.co/drJCT6Dwx5″>pic.twitter.com/drJCT6Dwx5</a>
Evacuation ordered for High Level, Alta., as wildfire approaches (CBC)
#MeToo’s legal forces take on McDonald’s (NYTimes)
UN chief threatens to suspend aid in Yemen over rebel theft of donor food (CNN)
Russian documents reveal desire to sow racial discord — and violence — in U.S. (NBC)
Tajikistan prison riot kills prominent opposition members (Al Jazeera)
Unknown attackers throw red paint at Greece’s parliament (Reuters)
Alabama public television bans Arthur gay wedding episode (BBC)
Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s U.K. restaurant chain collapses into insolvency (CBC)
Today in history
May 21, 1986: CEO polluter faces jail time
It was a Canadian first. After 69 convictions for dumping industrial waste into Toronto’s sewer system, an Ontario Supreme Court judged tired of Jetco Manufacturing Ltd.’s actions, imposing a $ 200,000 fine and sentencing its CEO, Keith Alexander, to a year in jail for contempt. Environmentalists rejoiced, but the punishment didn’t stick. Six months later, the Ontario Court of Appeal overturned both the fine and the jail term, ruling that the lower court hearing had been “procedurally unfair.”
A millionaire CEO in Toronto is sentenced to one year in prison for polluting city sewers. 2:20
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