Brita And Stephen Curry Announce Effort To Help Water Steal The Show

Brita And Stephen Curry Announce Effort To Help Water Steal The Show

first_imgFlip on the television and no matter the daypart or demographic, it’s nearly impossible to avoid beverage commercials. And just how many of those ads are for water, the beverage health experts agree people should drink the most? Pretty close to zero.Now, reigning MVP Stephen Curry and the Brita water filtration brand are teaming up to change that.Today, Curry and Brita launched Splash Studio, a campaign to get fans, health advocates, schools, film makers and more to make water a star, creating original commercials for the beverage that can go toe-to-toe with the best that beer or soda can offer. The maker of the winning spot will receive $25,000 and the chance to recreate the advertisement with a cameo from Curry himself. Brita will then take the winning commercial to air on TV at the start of the 2016-2017 basketball season.And while the contest is being funded and sponsored by Brita, the commercials should just be about drinking water. References to filtering water or Brita products won’t get a leg up. The winner will have simply created the kind of compelling, exciting story about water that, with an appearance from Stephen Curry, will help get people drinking the original beverage, H20.The contest will run from March 8 to May 31. Each submission will be judged on a combination of creativity, impact and originality. While the creative approach is up to the participant, entrants should avoid using trademarked music, brand names or logos, or celebrity likenesses. Submissions will be narrowed down to four finalists, to be announced July 1, 2016. From there, the public will get to vote to pick the ultimate winner. Final winner will be announced August 30, 2016.“One of the things that makes Stephen Curry so inspiring is his absolute commitment to being at his best, both on and off the court, which is supported by his choice of water,” said Ed Huber, general manager of the Brita brand. “Through this effort, we are giving people a platform to join Stephen by using their talents to encourage others to make healthy lifestyle choices.”The Splash Studio program and contest with Stephen Curry is just one part of Brita’s ongoing efforts to get people to choose water. In addition to working with the reigning MVP, Brita is a founding supporter of Drink Up, an effort from the Partnership for a Healthier America and its honorary chairwoman First Lady Michelle Obama to encourage people to drink more water more often.“This is important to me. Water is my drink of choice because I know it is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle,” said Stephen Curry. “Partnering with Brita and a campaign like this is one way I can personally help educate families about the benefits of water. I want to encourage people to have fun while they think of ways to inspire America to drink up.”Click here for more info.last_img read more

Lynda Carter Honored At 41st Annual Gracie Awards Gala

first_imgLast week, The Alliance for Women in Media Foundation handed out the 41st Annual Gracie Awards to a packed house at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills.Gracies Host Marika Dominczyk (L), Lifetime Achievement Honoree Lynda Carter and Scott FoleyCredit/Copyright: Getty Images/Rachel MurrayFirst-time host Marika Domińczyk led the show like a veteran eliciting laughs from the audience and keeping them engaged. The Gracie Awards were presented to honorees which were previously announced on March 21, 2016 (view full list of honorees here) in recognition of their successes in the media industry.The ceremony, led by executive producer Vicangelo Bulluck and featuring a production team with a female director, female assistant director, female stage manager and an all-female camera crew, hosted honorees like Lifetime Achievement Honoree Lynda Carter, Mindy Kaling, Allison Janney, Kathie Lee Gifford and more, while presenters and additional guests in attendance included Octavia Spencer, Scott Foley, Marilu Henner, Melissa Rivers, Maureen “Mo” Langan, Andrea Navedo, Danica McKellar, Lesley-Ann Brandt and more.Highlights from the show include: • Allison Janney, after being presented her award by Octavia Spencer for her work on Mom, gave a warm-hearted speech around her admiration of the Alliance for Women in Media for recognizing her work on a show that celebrates women, stating that “women who find that getting through all of the ups and downs of life, they find it easier to get through it leaning on each other. That’s what we do as women. That’s what we should do. It makes us stronger and more powerful.” 
 • Mindy Kaling took a light-hearted approach on an issue very important: pay inequality. “For years and years, the role of a lead actress on a sitcom was to do two things: look amazing and make one-third of what my co male star makes.” She continued, “I want to be clear. I do always look amazing on the show, and no man on that show makes more money than me.” 
 • 2016 Gracies Lifetime Achievement Award recipient and original Wonder Woman Lynda Carter received nothing short of a standing ovation when she was presented with the top honor of the evening. She touched on trailblazing women she looked up to like Lucille Ball, Carol Burnett and legendary stuntwoman Jeannie Epper, and expressed that the idea of her as a role model and “the fact that I may have inspired [young women] makes me happy.” 
 • Kathie Lee Gifford gave an acceptance speech thanking the broad audience who has accepted and supported her. “I am so grateful that I found an audience that let me be me. That let me share my ups and downs. That their heart broke when my heart broke. And they laughed at my stupid jokes and they forgave me when I made mistakes. And I cannot tell you how deeply grateful I am.” She finished by dedicating her award to her late husband Frank Gifford pointing to the sky and announcing, “This is for you, honey. You made me laugh.” 
 • Grammy Award-nominee Andra Day took to the stage for the unforgettable performance of the evening. Day brought the house down and the audience to their feet as she gave a flawless and empowering performance of her single Rise Up from her album “Cheers to the Fall.”last_img read more

Viola Davis Reads Childrens Book Rent Party Jazz For Storyline Online

first_imgAcademy Award winner Viola Davis (Fences, How to Get Away With Murder) shines a light on the unsung tradition of rent parties for Jazz Appreciation Month in the newest Storyline Online video released today by the SAG-AFTRA Foundation.Davis reads the critically acclaimed children’s book Rent Party Jazz written by William Miller, illustrated by Charlotte Riley-Webb and published by Lee & Low Books.Rent Party Jazz tells the story of Sonny Comeaux, a young boy living in New Orleans during the 1930’s. Sonny works before school and during the weekends to help his mother make ends meet, but they continuously struggle to make the monthly rent. When Sonny’s mother loses her job, all seems lost – until Sonny encounters and befriends jazz trumpeter Smilin’ Jack. When Jack hears about Sonny’s troubles, the musician offers to help Sonny and his mother put on a party consisting of tasty food, good company and great music in order to raise the rent money.Highlighting the rent party custom that originated in Harlem, New York, during the 1920’s, Rent Party Jazz showcases profound morals about compassion, family and supporting your friends and neighbors in times of need. It’s an all-embracing, poignant and uplifting story detailing the influence of jazz on African-American communities during an unheralded point in American history.Davis concludes her reading by sharing, “I love Rent Party Jazz because African-American characters are the focus of the story. It’s about jazz and it’s about people helping one another. Great message.”Viola Davis is just the latest actor to join an expanding cast of Storyline Online readers. Previous supporters include Lily Tomlin, Kevin Costner, Annette Bening, James Earl Jones, Betty White and Rita Moreno. Storyline Online features beloved performers reading cherished children’s books out loud alongside inventively animated, original illustrations. The site is available 24 hours a day at no cost to children, parents, and educators worldwide, and receives over 13 million views every month.“Viola Davis is a true champion for children’s literacy. She is one of the most in-demand and celebrated actors of our time, and yet she carved the time out of her jam-packed schedule to read for Storyline Online,” said Cyd Wilson, Executive Director of the SAG-AFTRA Foundation. “Rent Party Jazz is an incredible addition to our digital library, and we think children all over the world will enjoy this quintessential American story and its message of community.”Rent Party Jazz comes with supplemental activity guides for both home and school that strengthen verbal, written and comprehension skills. Aimed at students in the 2nd-4th grades, these activities encourage students to engage in critical thinking and ponder the themes from the book including giving, empathy and friendship.To view Rent Party Jazz and all of Storyline Online’s videos, visit, and subscribe to read more

Ray Lewis To Hold KickOff Fundraiser For Ray Of Hope Foundation Tonight

first_imgCreator and Host of the six-time Emmy Award winning “Sport Science” and author of the New York Times Best Seller “The Perfection Point”, John Brenkus, and thirteen-time Pro Bowl, two-time Super Bowl Champion and Super Bowl MVP, Ray Lewis, have announced that the Ray Of Hope Foundation will be holding a kick-off fundraising event on Monday, September 18th at SignatureFD Headquarters in Atlanta, GA.The financial planning corporation, SignatureFD and SignaturePRO, whose purpose is to help empower athletes to live with purpose and confidence in their relationships and actions, has partnered up with the Ray of Hope Foundation for the event.Longtime friends Brenkus and Lewis bonded over one common principle: sending positive energy to those in need. It all started one day when Brenkus asked Lewis to record a short encouraging video for a friend who was fighting stage 4 brain cancer. The very next day, a friend of Brenkus asked him to record a short, uplifting video for a high school athlete who was paralyzed in a football accident. Six months after receiving the personalized videos, both have made incredible strides in recovery.The uplifting video requests for both Lewis and Brenkus kept coming. The simple favor soon became a passion and the positive energy began to perpetuate itself. Together these two positive, inspiring men started The Ray of Hope Foundation, an organization built on the premise of bringing hope to those in need via uplifting personalized video messages.The roster of celebrities who have already signed up to send out personalized, inspirational videos to those in dire need include: Olympic champions Michael Phelps, Summer Sanders and Apolo Orno; former NFL athletes Trent Dilfer, Lewis Howes, Takeo Spikes, Merril Hoge, and Eddie George; Musical Artist Joey McIntyre; Comedians Adam Carolla and Bill Engvall; Actors Randy Couture and Bryan Callen; Sportscaster Ernie Johnson; CEOs Daymond John and Phyllis Newhouse…and many others.Brenkus, Host of “The Brink of Midnight Podcast,” and Lewis, co-Host of “The Tackling Life Podcast,” will hold a joint, live podcast where they will interview the original “Ray of Hope” recipients. The event will also feature a Silent Auction including a remarkable G2G Collection vacation, a live painting by Jared Emerson, trips to Park City, UT and Cabo San Lucas courtesy of the Montage, and many more items. Musical guest Eric Dodd from Nashville, and Brenkus’ own band “Brink of Midnight” which he formed with his wife, Lizzie Brenkus will perform. The gathering will also feature prime cocktails, authentic Atlanta eats.Notable guests in attendance include Super Bowl champions and New York Giants Safeties Deon Grant and James Butler; Jarius Wynn from the Green Bay Packers; former NFL stars Michael Jenkins, Terance Mathis, Ovie Mughelli, Adrian Clayborn, and Trevor Knight; former Georgia Bulldogs turned NFLers Rennie Curran, Fernando Velasco, and Drew Butler; Auburn War Eagle, Jason Campbell and Hannibal Navies.The list continues with more pro athletes like Sherrod Martin, Stevie Baggs, Jr., Ryan McNeil, and Vonnie Holiday; former #1 pick in the Major League Baseball draft and Clemson legend Kris Benson; Longtime college hoops Coach Al Skinner; Audio Adrenaline frontman Adam Agee, and a pack of other music, sports and business luminaries.For more information about Ray of Hope Foundation, click here.last_img read more

Meryl Streep and Gloria Steinem Address Pivotal Movement in Workplace Culture

first_imgWith high-profile sexual harassment scandals proliferating and millions joining the viral #MeToo social movement, speakers at the 13th annual Massachusetts Conference for Women took on this major social tipping point.Meryl Streep and women’s rights pioneer Gloria Steinem discuss the nation’s pivotal shift in workplace cultureCredit/Copyright: Marla Aufmuth/Getty ImagesAcademy Award winning actress Meryl Streep announced that she and other women in the entertainment industry plan to soon issue “non-negotiable” demands to improve the American workplace, including equal representation in board rooms, entertainment and other industries. “We are after 50/50 by 2020,” Streep said. “Equal means equal. And if it starts at the top, none of these shenanigans would have filtered down and it wouldn’t have been tolerated.”The two-day event, attracting a record audience of 16,000, started on the day TIME Magazine featured “The Silence Breakers” on the cover of its annual “Person of the Year” issue, recognizing those who are stepping forward to confront their harassers.“It’s such an interesting moment, because this conversation about why this is so widespread, this is really worth having and it’s fantastic,” Streep said. “I can’t help thinking it’s just a door that’s opening to a better world.”Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh also addressed the Conference. Other keynote speakers included stage, television and Academy Award-winning actor Viola Davis, fashion designer, philanthropist and author Diane von Furstenberg, and Adam Grant, top-rated Wharton Professor and best-selling co-author, with Sheryl Sandberg, of “Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joy,” also headlined the event.Themed “The Power of Us: Amplify Your Voice,” the annual nonpartisan, nonprofit Conference, brings together thousands of professionals to connect, renew, and find inspiration in community. The event features more than 150 thought leaders and industry experts from across the country in the fields of leadership, building networks, branding, philanthropy, finance, work-life balance, happiness and civility in the workplace and life.For the third year, the Conference presented its Workplace Summit, designed to promote gender partnerships and advance equity within workplaces, featuring Adam Grant, cultural innovator Verná Myers, and other thought leaders. The third annual Opening Night at the Conference, on December 6, featured Gloria Steinem, Bethenny Frankel, Skinnygirl founder, author, and branding guru; Barbara Lynch, restaurateur and award-winning chef; Cindy Guerra Robbins, President, Chief People Officer for; and spoken word poet Sarah Kay.“We are proud to have become the must-attend event for women, men and anyone who advocates for societal, workplace and political equality for women,” said Gloria Larson, President of the Massachusetts Conference for Women Board. “We are confident that attendees will take the extraordinary experiences and learnings from the Conference, the Workplace Summit, and Opening Night, and apply them to their lives and in their communities all year long.”The Massachusetts Conference for Women is presented by: State Street Corporation. It is generously sponsored by Dell; Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany; Cisco; Boston Scientific Corporation; Fresenius Medical Care; Hologic; Johnson & Johnson; Johnson Controls International; Liberty Mutual; National Grid; Raytheon; Akamai; AMAG Pharmaceuticals; Bank of America; Bentley University’s Center for Women & Business; Bose Corporation; Boston Children’s Hospital; Harvard Business School Executive Education; Mastercard; MFS Investment Management; Ocean Spray; Poo-Pourri; Rapid7; Reebok; Riverbed; Salesforce; Thermo Fisher Scientific; TripAdvisor; Bain Capital Community Partnership and Crimson Lion Lavine Family Foundation; Acadian Asset Management; Amtrak; Applied Materials; BJ’s Wholesale Club; Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts; Bonterra Organic Vineyards; Comcast; Erin Condren; John Hancock; Kate Spade & Company; Merck & Co., Inc.; Staples, Inc.; Suffolk Construction; United Airlines; Vertex; Weber Shandwick; Wells Fargo; and media sponsors AMP Radio 103.3; Mix 104.1; WBZ 1030 News Radio; The Boston Globe; and WCVB-TV Boston.“We are honored once again to support this remarkable event where women are encouraged to explore possibilities, make new connections, and find their voices,” said Kathy Horgan, executive vice president, chief human resources and citizenship officer for State Street Corporation. “The mission of the Massachusetts Conference for Women to promote and amplify the influence of women in the workplace and beyond aligns perfectly with our values at State Street.”To learn more about the 13th annual Massachusetts Conference for Women, visit read more

Your Chance To Own David And Victoria Beckhams Royal Wedding Outfits

first_imgHere is your chance to own the outfits worn by David and Victoria Beckham to the Royal Wedding!Own David and Victoria Beckham’s Royal Wedding is giving you the unique opportunity to win the clothes worn by the Beckhams, and all you have to do is donate to the We Love Manchester Emergency Fund. The more you donate, the more chances you have to win.Style icon David Beckham was the first man to step out in Dior Homme designed by Kim Jones — and now it could be all yours. Your dapper charcoal grey morning suit has “DB” sewn on the inside (just in case you forget who it used to belong to). It’s also paired with a light grey double-breasted waistcoat, Egyptian cotton poplin shirt, grey silk satin tie and black calfskin leather derbies. Victoria looked incredible wearing your new navy midi dress with a belted neck and split sleeves from her upcoming Pre-Spring/Summer 2019 collection. Maybe you’ll wear them to your own wedding. Maybe you’ll just never take them off. Whatever you decide to do with these beautiful outfits is up to you.The We Love Manchester Emergency Fund was established shortly after the bombing of the Manchester Arena just over a year ago. Donations to the fund help relieve the financial needs among the victims and survivors of the disaster, including the families and dependents of those killed or injured in the events. As time passes and people around the world show their love, support and solidarity, the Manchester community continues to grow stronger.To find out more, visit read more

TELUS STORYHIVE announces 30 femaledirected digital shorts finalists

first_imgAdvertisement Twitter Login/Register With: Congratulations to the 30 finalists chosen for the STORYHIVE Digital Shorts female director edition.NSI delivers training for the selected projects and their creators once they’re chosen through the STORYHIVE process. The public chooses 15 projects from content creators in British Columbia and 15 from Alberta.Each of the 30 finalists receive a $10K production grant, training and mentoring from seasoned NSI team members, and distribution on TELUS Optik™ TV On Demand. Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment The 30 finalists are:BCAkashi-あかし- from Mayumi YoshidaAn Army of Hearts from Alex DuncanBetter Together from Jen MuranetzThe Apprenticeship of Raffael Cocco from Krista KellowayScattered from Debra SearsThe Deer from Julie Lynn MortensenDrift Softly from Shelby WilsonFinal Breath from Kim FeragenStatic Alex from Alayna SilverbergThe Man in the Rabbit Mask from Tarun KeramNever Better from Synnove GodesethPast Time from Petie ChalifouxUnder the Radar from Erin CummingAll My Jokes Are About Me from Shiraz HigginsThe Unconditional Love from Sunitha DevadasAlbertaInconvenient from Cassandra Paige JohnstonInstant from Lauren LimThis Is Not a Passport Photo from Stephanie SimpsonChocolate Cake from Brittney GrabillUp in Smoke from Paige K. BoudreauHenna from Melissa KreilThe Winter Song from Rebecca FrickI Phub You from Sam ReidOKT – Only Known Time from Jessekiah JostSleepwalker from Anna CooleyNightwalk from Andrea BecaActress Denied from Alana FischerNight Light from Kennedy BaileyIrene from Alicia KrawchukVoluptuous Beauty from Nicole Murphy Facebook Advertisementlast_img read more

Sunny Leone How a porn star from Sarnia Ont won over Bollywood

first_imgAdvertisement Courtesy of Mongrel MediaFilmmaker Dilip Mehta admits he is still completely baffled by Sunny Leone, the subject of his latest documentary, Mostly Sunny. “I think the film has done her wonderfully because she’s come across as a strong woman, as an independent-thinking woman (and) good for her. “They’re looking at her and saying maybe there is an alternative. Maybe what our parents have told us in life may not necessarily be true for us anymore — that you can make your own choices and possibly even succeed.” Indeed, despite her lascivious start in the adult industry, Leone has truly become an ambassador of female empowerment in India. Today however, Leone has inexplicably become a Bollywood sensation by transitioning to mainstream movies — an unthinkable transformation in a traditional culture that channels an extreme kind of conservative parochialism. “She is spearheading a movement,” said Mehta of Leone’s influence in India. “There must be (others) but none who have her acumen at making money and her history. And her history’s remarkable. “I wanted to do it because it was a vehicle for (female empowerment), plus, it was an introspective vehicle for me to look at India. India today is not the country I grew up in and I felt it’s an interesting time to do such a film and use her as the vehicle.” “Her parents’ generation, they have shunned her because of her choices,” insisted the talented brother of Canadian auteur Deepa Mehta (Midnight’s Children).“It’s a strange choice of words but the younger generation are really tickled pink by Sunny Leone because they find her liberating, they find her fresh and almost label her as a feminist.” Not only does she continue to be feted in Bollywood circles but her success has pushed a pseudo-liberation movement. Perhaps most compelling though is how her story is inspiring the next generation of Indian women. “Here is a former porn star in India, which is steeped in tradition,” offered Mehta about the real-life Bollywood star of Mostly Sunny, opening in most cities Friday. “Even after spending two and a half years doing the film, I just don’t get how India has accepted her with open arms.” Twitter Advertisement On the screen, Leone’s acting ability also quickly won her an admirer in Mehta. Advertisement Courtesy of Mongrel MediaSunny Leone is the subject of documentary Mostly Sunny. “I was floored by her honesty,” he said of her work in the film. “My approach was to distance myself in one sense by being a fly on the wall. Login/Register With: Filmmaker Dilip Mehta may have intimately studied the main character of his latest documentary, but he admits he’s still completely baffled by Sunny Leone. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment The truth is Sunny Leone’s success itself is a bit mysterious. Born in Sarnia, Ont., Sunny shot to fame at just 19 years old when she plunged herself into the porn industry and quickly rose to be crowned 2003’s Penthouse Pet of the Year. “Who are we to cast dispersions and judgment?”By: Steve Gow Facebooklast_img read more


first_imgThe jurors for this year’s CBC Poetry Prize are poet Jordan Abel, writer and social worker Kai Cheng Thom and singer and songwriter Ruth B. The winner of this year’s prize will be announced on November 14.In addition to a cash prize of $6000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Grand Prize winner will receive a writing residency at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity and will be published on the CBC Books website. The four other finalists will each receive $1000 from the Canada Council for the Arts and will be published on CBC Books.The finalists for the CBC Books French-language Prix de poésie were also announced this morning. More information about those finalists can be found at under the “Prix de poésie” tab.For more information on the CBC Literary Prizes, please visit CBC BooksHome to Canada Reads, Writers & Company with Eleanor Wachtel, The Next Chapter with Shelagh Rogers, Canada Writes and the CBC Literary Prizes, CBC Books connects Canadians with books, encouraging a shared love of reading and writing. For book news, writing challenges, reading lists, book recommendations and more, visit CBC/Radio-CanadaCBC/Radio-Canada is Canada’s national public broadcaster. Through our mandate to inform, enlighten and entertain, we play a central role in strengthening Canadian culture. As Canada’s trusted news source, we offer a uniquely Canadian perspective on news, current affairs and world affairs. Our distinctively homegrown entertainment programming draws audiences from across the country. Deeply rooted in communities, CBC/Radio-Canada offers diverse content in English, French and eight Indigenous languages. We are leading the transformation to meet the needs of Canadians in a digital world.About Canada Council for the ArtsThe Canada Council for the Arts is Canada’s public arts funder, with a mandate to foster and promote the study and enjoyment of, and the production of works in, the arts. The Council champions and invests in artistic excellence through a broad range of grants, services, prizes and payments to professional Canadian artists and arts organizations. Its work ensures that excellent, vibrant and diverse art and literature engages Canadians, enriches their communities and reaches markets around the world. The Council also raises public awareness and appreciation of the arts through its communications, research and arts promotion activities. It is responsible for the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, which promotes the values and programs of UNESCO in Canada to contribute to a more peaceful, equitable and sustainable future. The Canada Council Art Bank operates art rental programs and helps further public engagement with contemporary arts.About Banff Centre for Arts and CreativityFounded in 1933, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity is a learning organization built upon an extraordinary legacy of excellence in artistic and creative development. What started as a single course in drama has grown to become the global organization leading in arts, culture, and creativity across dozens of disciplines. From our home in the stunning Canadian Rocky Mountains, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity aims to inspire everyone who attends our campus – artists, leaders, and thinkers – to unleash their creative potential and realize their unique contribution to society through cross-disciplinary learning opportunities, world-class performances, and public outreach. Advertisement Advertisement Twitter Facebook Montreal – CBC BOOKS, CBC’s online home for literary content, together with partners the Canada Council for the Arts and Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, today announced the 2018 finalists for the CBC Poetry Prize.The finalists are:Sanita Fejzic of Ottawa, Ontario for MotherNeil Griffin of Victoria, British Columbia for Canadian Immigration Services Citizenship ExamNatalie Lim of Vancouver, British Columbia for ArrhythmiaJulie Mannell of Toronto, Ontario for Phone Sex with a One Time Lover on the West CoastBola Opaleke of Winnipeg, Manitoba for The Autobiography of WaterThese poems were selected from more than 2600 submitted from across the country. Each of the shortlisted poems are available to read on From left: Bola Opaleke, Julie Mannell, Natalie Lim, Neil Griffin and Sanita Fejzić. (Submitted by the writers, see individual pages for credit) Login/Register With: Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment last_img read more


first_imgAdvertisement Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment TORONTO, July 25, 2019 – Creative industry members will hit the hustings this fall, asking federal election candidates to go on record on the future of Canada’s $9 billion market in screen-based production.Cast, crew and creators are banding together for the “Just Ask” campaign (“Je m’implique” in French), calling on members to pledge to attend one election-related event this fall and ask at least one question on key issues facing the industry.The campaign includes the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists (ACTRA), the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC) and the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE). Just Ask The micro-websites “” and “” went live at 9:00am Eastern time allowing members in 338 ridings to sign up for the campaign.The site will feature election backgrounders and sample questions on the top issues for the industry. Participants will fan out this fall using the hashtags #justask2019 and #jemimplique2019 to spread the word on answers they get from candidates.The top query on the site encourages pledgers to ask candidates if they’ll “support both legislation and regulation requiring all players that benefit from the Canadian broadcasting and telecommunications systems to invest in the creation of original Canadian programming?”Other top topics include funding and tax credits for arts & culture, protections for precarious workers, copyright protection, public broadcasting and promoting diversity, inclusion and respectful workplaces in the cultural sector.John Lewis, the IATSE’s Director of Canadian Affairs: “A strong creative industry is critical for Canada, both financially and culturally.  We need to ensure that, whatever the result of the upcoming election, the federal government understands and supports the success of our industry.”Tim Southam, DGC President: “Members of the industry are making their voices heard in an unprecedented, unified way. In a rapidly changing global marketplace undergoing disruptive technological shifts, now is the time to modernize the rules for our broadcasting system to better serve the public and ensure the voices of Canadian creators are heard for decades to come.”David Sparrow, ACTRA President: “Creative industry workers are seeking out candidates from all political parties to ‘Just Ask’ them where they stand on supporting a strong Canadian film and TV industry. With original Canadian programming like Letterkenny, Anne with an E and Schitt’s Creek finding audiences around the world, we’ll be asking federal election candidates to share their plans to ensure the continued growth of our Canadian entertainment industry.”IATSE:Founded in 1893, IATSE represents 140,000 members working in all forms of live theatre, motion picture and television productions, trade shows and exhibitions, television broadcasting, and concerts as well as the equipment and construction shops that support all these areas of the entertainment industry. IA represents virtually all the behind-the-scenes workers in crafts ranging from motion picture animator to theater usher.ACTRA:ACTRA (Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists) is the national union of professional performers working in the English-language recorded media in Canada. ACTRA represents the interests of over 25,000 members across the country – the foundation of Canada’s highly acclaimed professional performing community.DGC:The Directors Guild of Canada (DGC) is a national labour organization that represents over 4,800 key creative and logistical personnel in the screen-based industry covering all areas of direction, design, production and editing. The DGC negotiates and administers collective agreements and lobbies extensively on issues of concern for Members including Canadian content conditions, CRTC regulations and ensuring that funding is maintained for Canadian film and television programming.center_img Login/Register With: Advertisement Advertisement Facebooklast_img read more

Dene Nation chief urges Trudeau to pressure candidate into stepping down from

first_imgAPTN National NewsOTTAWA—A senior Assembly of First Nations chief has written a letter urging Liberal leader Justin Trudeau to ask one of his candidates to step down from her role as regional chief in British Columbia.The letter from Bill Erasmus, the regional AFN chief for the Northwest Territories, asks Trudeau to pressure Jody Wilson-Raybould into stepping down from her role as AFN regional chief for B.C. so she can focus on her campaign.“This is of great concern to us in the north because she cannot have ‘two masters.’ If she is a Liberal candidate she cannot be a regional chief at the same time,” wrote Erasmus in the Feb. 6 letter. “If she is a Liberal candidate she cannot be a regional chief at the same time. Therefore we request that you approach her and ask for her resignation as the regional chief of British Columbia so she can be a full-time candidate in your party.”Erasmus wrote in the letter he met with Trudeau on Jan. 11 in Yellowknife.“Our brief meeting did not allow me to bring up the issue of (Wilson-Raybould),” wrote Erasmus, who is also national chief for the Dene Nation.Wilson-Raybould has the full support of B.C. chiefs for the time being to keep her regional chief position while holding the Liberal candidacy for Vancouver read more

Ontario First Nation declares state of emergency after radioactive particles found in

first_imgBrandi MorinAPTN National NewsA First Nation in northwestern Ontario has declared a state of emergency after receiving a do not consume water advisory from Health Canada officials February 12.The advisory is step above a boil water advisory and was ordered due to traces of radionuclide found in the local water source and higher than normal lead levels.Northwest Angle #33 First Nation Chief Darlene Comegan said in a statement that her community is tired of being ignored by both provincial and federal governments and is calling on them to take immediate action to help.“In light of the Federal government’s plan to ensure clean drinking water for First Nations … we are living in third world conditions and it is just not acceptable. It is beyond Chief Comegan’s understanding that we can be forgotten by everyone,” the statement read.The chief and other leadership met with a cancer study team in Toronto last week to come up with a plan to address the high cancer rates found in the community and surrounding area believed linked to their water source.“It’s a very scary issue. Our members always knew there was an issue with the water,” said Norma Girard, land manager for Northwest Angle #33. “How many more of our people do we have to see suffer and die from cancer?”Although there are fewer than 50 people living on reserve due to safety concerns around water and road access, Girard said they’re concerned for the elders, young children and new born baby that are living currently there.The First Nation has been supplying bottled water to community members since 2011, which Girard said was funded via “wherever they could find it”.They’ve been utilizing two portable water treatment plants for the last 15 years.“Those were put in place at the time as a temporary solution,” said Girard.The reserve is located in the Kenora district of northwestern Ontario and is only accessible by boat in the summer time and ice road in the winter.Leadership is further concerned about the upcoming spring breakup that will make it more difficult to deliver clean drinking water.The problem extends to a lack of access to electricity that could power a proper water treatment plant.The community sits on the Manitoba/Minnesota border and currently pays high costs for hydro electricity from the U.S. which purchases it from Manitoba and is fed there on a marine cable. They’re in the midst of applying for a direct power line through Manitoba Hydro.“We’ve always been on a capacity issue. We can only do so much with that cable that we have. If we want a water plant we have to have power to push it,” said Girard.The lack of power means no school and limited infrastructure. Most families move to the City of Kenora so that their kids can go to school.It’s the most vulnerable, like elders and younger children that are left being behind, said Girard.She said leadership spoke with Indigenous and Northern Affairs today via telephone who advised they will provide money to continue supplying bottled water.But Girard said they need more than that. Her community is dying out and they want their children back home.“How can we have a community without children? What is home without the sounds of their voices playing nearby?”Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has vowed to end the water crisis in First Nations communities within 5 years and Girard said they’re trusting him to keep his word.“Based on the Speech from the Throne, Justin Trudeau’s promises…we’re hoping. That’s our hope that the Federal government will do something,” said Girard.bmorin@aptn.calast_img read more

How the AFNs fiscal agreement with INAC almost fell apart in the

first_imgKenneth Jackson APTN National News NIAGARA FALLS – An agreement that supposedly lifts the two per cent cap on funding to First Nations programs and helps get money flowing into the communities became a source of controversy and heated debate between AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde and Ontario Regional Chief Isadore Day behind the scenes at this year’s annual general assembly.Bellegarde signed the fiscal agreement or memorandum of understanding (MOU), with Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett on Tuesday.But two executive chiefs wanted the signing delayed saying more consultation was needed according to a chain of emails leaked to APTN National News.According to the emails, the AFN executive saw the document for the first time on Sunday as part of their “executive kits” which were prepared for the 37th annual general assembly.“Some chiefs concerned about this fiscal relations signing,” wrote Saskatchewan Regional Chief Bobby Cameron in an email to the AFN executive Monday. “Do we as AFN exec proceed and wait for more dialogue from our folks?”Ontario Regional Chief Isadore Day said the MOU signing needed a special motion to move forward, writing it was being “rammed through”.“I did not agree to the MOU; we are going to have to address this,” Day wrote addressing Bellegarde. “We did not discuss the MOU specific at the executive table — PERIOD!”That email followed what appeared to be a heated telephone call between Day and Bellegarde earlier that day that ended with Bellegarde hanging up Day.“Your tone and questioning my ‘unity being nothing but bullshit’ – is very unbecoming of our efforts to collaborate,” wrote Day. “You indicated that INAC folks are hyped up and excited about signing this MOU and that ‘I’ (you) are going ahead. Perry, we need to examine closer.”Bellegarde responded that the AFN executive would hold an emergency meeting Monday night to vote on a motion to proceed.“This is about getting rid of the 2 percent cap and reestablishing our Chiefs Committee on fiscal and getting long term sustainable funding for our first Nations,” replied Bellegarde. “We are on solid ground with this and are proceeding with the signing ceremony.”Later that night the AFN executive voted to proceed as Bellegarde said they were going to, but Day abstained from voting in protest.The next day at the opening of the ceremony Bellegarde and Bennett signed the MOU. It’s not clear how the MOU will help with the federal government funding First Nations or what role the AFN will play in doing that. But they did say a working group would be made.Day avoided questions from APTN Tuesday about the tension.Bellegarde held a press conference and APTN asked him about what happened the day before.He said the MOU was the product of chiefs’ mandates and resolutions to get the two per cent cap removed.“Because there was issues and concerns that we didn’t get a formal resolution (for the MOU signing) I called an emergency meeting to clear the air,” said Bellegarde, who named Day as the single member of the executive to abstain.On Wednesday, Day spoke to the assembly about his reservations over the MOU that were first reported Tuesday by APTN.“Not only did the AFN executive not receive time to review this MOU, but many chiefs are still uncertain about the need for an MOU to develop a new fiscal relationship,” said Day before chiefs at the assembly in the main hall.Bennett told the chiefs the two per cent cap had been lifted but Day called for Bennett to provide proof Wednesday.“We also need to be informed that the two per cent cap is in fact gone, which includes a cap on base funding. This is an election commitment that must be realized now not through an MOU,” he said.Immediately after Day was done speaking he and Bellegarde signed a new protocol that will ensure lines of communication are more effective between the AFN and Chiefs of Ontario.Then they posed for pictures.kjackson@aptn.calast_img read more

Qalipu Mikmaq First Nations rally in Ottawa as thousands risk losing band

first_imgLucy Scholey APTN NewsElder Ken “Mutchie” Bennett fears his Mi’kmaq culture will disappear with his generation, as thousands of fellow band members are expected to have their Indian status revoked this spring.Bennett, along with about 40 members and supporters of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation in Newfoundland, were in Ottawa Saturday protesting a controversial federal government agreement.A total of 10,512 founding band members are expected to lose status this spring, after an Order in Council determines the final list of members.Bennett was one of the lucky 13,365 founding members who will keep his status. His wife, children and grandchildren were rejected from band.“It hits home when my daughter calls me up from New Brunswick and says, ‘Dad, our bloodline or our recognition … ends with your generation. It ends with you.’ It was very hurtful,” he said.When Newfoundland joined Confederation in 1949, the province’s Indigenous people weren’t recognized under the Indian Act. It wasn’t until 2008 when the Canadian government signed an agreement with the Federation of Newfoundland Indians (FNI), allowing First Nations to apply for founding membership of the Qalipu band.A total of 27,000 applications were received and 23,877 were deemed eligible as founding members. Then, a flood of applications rolled in. By 2012, the government had 104,000 applications to sift through.In 2013, the government and FNI announced a supplemental agreement, clarifying the band enrolment rules. They decided to review all applications, including those already received and accepted. Apart from the original 10,512 founding band members, a further 68,134 applicants were rejected from the pool.It’s a process that has divided families and left many feeling displaced.Those who applied for status had to meet a set of criteria, including whether they lived in Newfoundland, participated in Mi’kmaq cultural events or ceremonies or, if they moved away from province, whether they came home for visits or stayed in touch with band members.Those who moved away from home may no longer qualify for band membership. Bennett said it’s confusing why he, a veteran of the Canadian Armed Forces who spent 28 years moving around the country, would be eligible.“How I retained mine, I’m really not sure,” he said. “I’m grateful, but I’m unhappy that any of our brothers and sisters lost their recognition. They didn’t lose their identity. They still are who they were born to be. But they lost their identity as a status Indigenous person in Canada.”Jim DuHart, who organized the Ottawa protest, held up his status card before the crowd. Originally from Corner Brook, he’s one of 13 people in his family.“Three in, everybody out including me,” he said.Chief Brendan Mitchell said it’s unfair for Qalipu identity to be tied to geography. Newfoundland’s high unemployment rate forces many band members to move out of province for work, he said.“Our people all over the country are being impacted by what’s happening,” he said. “They’re upset. They’re hurting. They feel that they’ve been displaced. They feel sadness in their hearts over what happened.”The supplemental agreement was signed pre-Trudeau, but Mitchell said it’s time for the current government to step in. Otherwise, he said, there could be lawsuits following the finalized spring band list.“We talk about truth and reconciliation and the main topics for us include residential schools, for example, missing and murdered women, 60s scoop, sterilization,” he said. “Well, this country’s going to have to add Qalipu First Nation to that situation regarding truth and reconciliation.”A spokesperson from Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada said the government has no plans to amend Bill C-25, the act respecting the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Band Order.“To date, more than 18,000 individuals have been accepted as Founding Members of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation – making it the second largest First Nation by population in Canada.”Qalipu membership by the numbers (from the Government of Canada website):– 13,365 applicants who are on the current Founding Members list will remain eligible for founding membership– 10,512 applicants who are on the current Founding Members list were found by the joint Enrolment Committee to not meet the criteria under the 2013 Supplemental Agreement for Founding Membership (These individuals will retain their membership until the amendment of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Band Order, expected in the spring of 2018. They are entitled to appeal their decision, the results of which may increase the Founding Members List. Some of those who are no longer eligible for founding membership may still be able to register for membership as a descendant of a Founding Member.)– 4,679 applicants who were not Founding Members will now be eligible for founding membership (They will gain membership once the amendment of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Band Order is confirmed through an Order in Council in the spring of 2018.)– 68,134 applicants were not Founding Members and will not be eligible for founding membership– 3,984 applicants have invalid applications and are therefore not eligible for founding membershiplscholey@aptn.calast_img read more

Stop killing pipelines and prosperity say Indigenous leaders

first_imgDennis WardAPTN NewsIndigenous leaders who represent more than 130 communities involved in the oil and gas sector were on Parliament Hill Thursday to speak out about two proposed bills they say will leave their “communities in poverty.”Members of Aboriginal Equity Partners and the Indian Resource Council were in Ottawa to express their dissatisfaction with the proposed Oil Tanker Moratorium (Bill C-48) and the proposed Impact Assessment Act (Bill C-69).They say the legislation will prevent communities, who are conducting or trying to conduct “responsible oil production” on their territories, from receiving “the full value of our resources.”“No moratoriums, no killing pipelines, no bills that are guaranteed to lead to endless court challenges,” Bruce Dumont said during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday.Dumont, former president of the B.C. Metis Nation, said the federal government needs to find a balance between the economy and the environment.Former B.C. Metis Nation President Bruce Dumont said efforts to protect the environment are costing Indigenous communities with fossil fuel resources money.He said dozens of oil and gas-producing communities are losing “$200-million each year in royalties, compared to 2012, due to the price deferential and a lack of pipeline access for the products.“That computes to about $18,000 per family, per year.”The leaders, who gathered to speak out about the pending legislation, say the media and politicians are portraying Metis and First Nations as “anti-development.”“I want you to think of the consequences of that,” Dumont said in front of a small group of reporters at the press gallery.“Our neighbours in rural communities of Saskatchewan, Alberta and B.C. who are rig workers, drillers, truckers, think we are the problem — that we are killing their jobs, their livelihood and their ability to support their families. We also have families to support.”Those speaking against the two bills acknowledge the relationship with the resource sector has not been perfect but argued it has provided “opportunities to exercise self-determination.”Indian Resource Council CEO Stephen Buffalo said he’s concerned about Bill C-69’s proposed expansion of public participation in standing.Buffalo believes only those directly affected by a project should be able to participate.“We don’t want to open the door for big environmental NGOs to delay or disrupt projects in our territories,” he read more

Kanesatake will accept help from army if flood waters rise again

first_imgTom FennarioAPTN NewsThe Grand Chief of the Mohawk Territory of Kanesatake says he will accept help from the army if rising waters are too much for people living along the river are too much to handle.With heavy rainfall forecast for the area, people are bracing for the same kind of flooding that his in 2017.Kanesatake’s relationship with the Canadian army has been strained since the 1990s when soldiers were brought in to break up a blockade in the community.Known as the Oka Crisis, the conflict pitted Mohawk people against Quebec’s police and Canadian read more

Resounding success of Alberta energy rebates prompts second round

first_imgCALGARY – The Alberta government is launching a second round of discounts on energy efficient products after the initial round proved wildly successful.The instant rebates cover the same range of home products discounted in the first round of the program, including low-flow shower heads, LED lights, dimmer switches and smart power bars.Alberta Environment Minister Shannon Phillips said the government decided to add a second round after the first round resulted in a 40,000 per cent surge in low-flow shower head sales and between 8,000 and 14,500 per cent increases in LED-type light sales.Phillips said sales of energy efficient products in the first round totalled 4.3 million, resulting in energy savings of 420,000 gigajoules, which is enough energy to heat about 3,500 homes a year.The government says the program, with each round costing about $14 million, discounts the products by about 25 per cent, with consumers covering the rest.The efficiency program, which runs for four weeks in October, also includes home improvement rebates of up to $3,500 on products like windows, insulation, and tankless hot water heaters, and online rebates of up to $100 on some clothes washers, refrigerators, and smart thermostats.last_img read more

Chinas new Silk Road hits political financial hurdles

first_imgBEIJING, China – China’s plan for a modern Silk Road of railways, ports and other facilities linking Asia with Europe hit a $14 billion pothole in Pakistan.Pakistan’s relations with Beijing are so close that officials call China their “Iron Brother.” Despite that, plans for the Diamer-Bhasha Dam were thrown into turmoil in November when the chairman of Pakistan’s water authority said Beijing wanted an ownership stake in the hydropower project. He rejected that as against Pakistani interests.China issued a denial but the official withdrew the dam from among dozens of projects being jointly developed by the two countries.From Pakistan to Tanzania to Hungary, projects under President Xi Jinping’s signature “Belt and Road Initiative” are being cancelled, renegotiated or delayed due to disputes about costs or complaints host countries get too little out of projects built by Chinese companies and financed by loans from Beijing that must be repaid.In some areas, Beijing is suffering a political backlash due to fears of domination by Asia’s biggest economy.“Pakistan is one of the countries that is in China’s hip pocket, and for Pakistan to stand up and say, ‘I’m not going to do this with you,’ shows it’s not as ‘win-win’ as China says it is,” said Robert Koepp, an analyst in Hong Kong for the Economist Corporate Network, a research firm.“Belt and Road,” announced by Xi in 2013, is a loosely defined umbrella for Chinese-built or -financed projects across 65 countries from the South Pacific through Asia to Africa and Europe.Other governments welcomed the initiative in a region the Asian Development Bank says needs more than $26 trillion of infrastructure investment by 2030 to keep economies growing. Nations including Japan have given or lent billions of dollars for development, but China’s venture is bigger and the only source of money for many projects.Governments from Washington to Moscow to New Delhi are uneasy Beijing is trying to use its “Belt and Road” to develop a China-centred political structure that will erode their influence.Among projects that have been derailed or disrupted, authorities in Nepal cancelled plans in November for Chinese companies to build a $2.5 billion dam after they concluded contracts for the Budhi Gandaki Hydro Electric Project violated rules requiring multiple bidders.Consulting firm BMI Research has compiled a database of $1.8 trillion of infrastructure investments across Asia, Africa and the Middle East that include Chinese money or other involvement.“It’s probably too early to say at this point how much of the overall initiative will actually be implemented,” said Christian Zhang, a BMI analyst.The U.S. and Japanese governments express interest in building contracts or other potential opportunities. But they also are trying to develop alternative initiatives.The stumbles for one of the world’s most ambitious infrastructure ventures could help temper concerns Beijing will increase its strategic influence.Even Pakistan, one of China’s friendliest neighbours, has failed to agree on key projects.The two governments are developing facilities with a total cost of $60 billion including power plants and railways to link China’s far west with the Chinese-built port of Gwadar on the Indian Ocean.A visit by a Chinese assistant foreign minister in November produced no agreement on railway projects in the southern city of Karachi valued at $10 billion and a $260 million airport for Gwadar.The same month, the chairman of the Pakistan Water and Power Development Authority announced the Diamer-Bhasha Dam would be withdrawn from joint development.“Chinese conditions for financing the Diamer-Bhasha Dam were not doable and against our interests,” the official, Muzammil Hussain, told legislators, according to Pakistani news reports.The Chinese Cabinet agency overseeing “Belt and Road,” the National Development and Reform Commission, denied in a written statement that it asked for an ownership stake.“Belt and Road” is interwoven with official efforts to export Chinese rail, hydropower and other technology and steel, aluminum and other industrial goods.In Thailand, work on a $15 billion high-speed railway was suspended in 2016 following complaints too little business went to Thai companies. A new plan announced in July gives local contractors a bigger role.___Ahmed reported from Islamabad and Domasa from Dodoma, Tanzania. AP Writer Mari Yamaguchi in Tokyo contributed.last_img read more