1,600 to be laid off at CN Rail due to weakening economy
The Canadian National Railway will be laying off almost 2000 staff members.
According to a report by the Globe and Mail, the Canadian National Railway Co. is laying off roughly 1,600 people, as freight volumes decline largely due to trade tensions and the overall weakening North American economy.
To provide some perspective, the company says it has about 24,000 staff.
This is nearly 7% cut across the board.
According to Global News, a spokesperson for CN said some employees would be placed on furlough and management and union job numbers would be cut “due to a weakening of many sectors of the economy.”
“These adjustments have already started to take place across the network,” senior media relations adviser Alexandre Boulé said in an emailed statement.
Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Theresa Tam has said that the coronavirus will be nearly impossible to contain if the virus were to continue spreading internationally at the rate that it is.
Tam also said that Canadian businesses and individuals should prepare for an outbreak on near-pandemic levels, should that be the case.
“We are coming to similar conclusions,” said Dr. Vera Etches to the Ottawa Citizen Monday. “It looks like it is going to be more and more difficult to contain this virus and it may well evolve into a pandemic. That would change the efforts to contain every last case and contact.”
Etches, who serves as Ottawa’s top health officer, gave some basic steps that concerned citizens should follow—such as stockpiling non-perishable goods and needed prescriptions.
“Imagine if someone was ill for a week. What would you need?”
Dr. Tam went on to say that the risk of the virus becoming uncontainable has increased sharply since rapidly spreading in countries outside of China. “The window for containment is closing. These signs are worrisome.”
Within the country, both Ontario and British Columbia have confirmed that the virus has spread once again, with Ontario having briefly been coronavirus free after the first three cases were considered clear. In total, there are 11 cases of the novel virus in Canada.
Health officials are most recently tracking a woman in her 20s in Toronto who recently travelled to China, along with a Vancouver woman who recently travelled to Iran by way of Montreal. A man close to the woman also contracted the virus.
Iran is the latest country to endure a coronavirus induced panic. The Middle Eastern country now has 13 confirmed deaths, according to government figures.
In Europe, Italy is also in the midst of an outbreak, as 12 communities have been put on lockdown and a popular Venice carnival has been cancelled following six deaths from the disease.
Canada has so far been successful in the virus’s overall containment, being able to quickly identify and isolate those who’ve contracted the virus.
Dr. Tam believes getting out of winter, a high season for the spread of disease would be a big help for the country.
Globally, the coronavirus has infected nearly 80,000 people, with over 77,000 of the cases in China. Of the 2,618 deaths, only 23 have been outside of China, in 30 countries.
With the release of Justin Bieber’s most recent album—Changes—the 25-year-old has now had seven Billboard No. 1 albums in a row making him the youngest solo artist to do so, according to CBC News.
Bieber broke a 60-year record that was previously held by Elvis Presley. Presley obtained the record with the release of Blue Hawaii in 1961. The album was a soundtrack for a film that Elvis released with the same title.
Elvis was 26 when he released Blue Hawaii. On March 1, Bieber will turn 26.
A similar record is held by The Beatles, as a group. The four Beatles were all below 26 when Rubber Soul was released in 1966—becoming their seventh No. 1 album in a row. They eventually went on to release 19 No. 1 albums.
Ringo Starr was 25 at the time and was the oldest member of the group while the youngest member—George—was just 22.
Bieber’s new album marks his ninth to climb to the top 10. The debut was on Feb. 14 and was able to move 231,000 units in the first week. Changes is Bieber’s first album in over four years and it was released at the same time as a documentary series on YouTube. The album follows his 2015 album, Purpose.
The success of the album has come with controversy as Bieber was in the headlines for telling fans to help his Yummy single climb streaming charts in January. Bieber asked fans to play the song on repeat and buy it multiple times in an Instagram post which was later deleted.
During the Super Bowl, Bieber also used the song to promote Chipotle, the restaurant chain, on TikTok. Critics thought that this was not aligned with TikTok’s primary focus.
Yummy however, peaked at No. 3, and was unable to reach No. 1.
Tyler Tasson of Endemic Marketing in Toronto, said that Bieber’s tactics are possibly a warning sign of how music marketing may be manipulated in the future.
“On the one hand, reaching out to your fans and engaging them to do things like streaming the album and buying singles is great, but then getting them to try to manipulate the system is a whole other thing,” said Tasson.
The Billboard’s chart used to be decided by sales alone but now relies on streaming data as well. The musicians can use this to their advantage if they already have a large following.
“One could argue that the reason Elvis got that big was also good marketing, but there was also really amazing talent there,” said Tasson.
“Now, it’s all about how you can manipulate the game in a way to get to that number on the charts.”
The deputy health minister of Iran announced that he has been infected with coronavirus and isolated himself after experiencing a fever. Iraj Harirchi posted the news via a video on his social media. This announcement comes shortly after Harirchi spoke at a press conference in which he downplayed the spread of the virus in Iran and said that mass quarantines were unnecessary.
Surrounding nations such as Afghanistan, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman recently reported their first new coronavirus cases. All the people who were infected were returning from Iran, according to The Guardian.
A flight departing from Tehran to Istanbul on Tuesday had a total of 17 passengers aboard who were reported to have higher than average temperatures, forcing Turkey to reroute the plane to its capital, Ankara.
This news confirms the wide-spread fears in Iran that coronavirus is rapidly spreading throughout parts of the country.
“I wanted to tell you that I got corona,” said Harirchi. “I had a fever yesterday. The tests came back positive last night. I isolated myself. Just a few moments ago, I was told that the final test came. I’ll start taking medicine. Generally, I feel fine. I just felt a bit tired, I had a fever, and it will drop.
“Be sure with the effort of the medical staff and ministry of health headed by the [health minister] and with your support and the state and military within the coming weeks, we’ll be victorious against this virus.
“We’ll defeat corona. Be assured. I’m saying this deep from my heart. This virus is democratic, and it doesn’t distinguish between poor and rich or statesman and an ordinary citizen.
“Many might get infected, but we have enough effective medicine, take care of yourselves. Take care of the nurses and doctors who work heroically.”
The country announced four new cases of coronavirus on Tuesday. Iran has been forced to shut down many of their schools and universites in certain major cities while other nations in the Middle East have closed their borders from Iran and shut down pilgramage routes to and from.
Meanwhile, Turkey diverted a plane from Tehran, which had been destined for Istanbul, to its capital Ankara, after 17 passengers were reported to have higher than average temperatures.
Statistics Canada has revealed the number of Canadians living below the poverty line, according to 2018’s tax return figures.
The agency says that 3.2 million Canadians are living below the poverty line—which tops out at 8.7 percent of the population, compared to 9.5 percent in 2017.
The child poverty rate has also decreased since 2012, dropping from 15 percent to 8.2 percent in that time. Still, that totals out to 566,000 children living in poverty.
Canada’s child poverty rate of 8.2 percent has not drastically changed one way or the other since 2017.
Social Development Minister Ahmed Hussen touted the numbers as a victory in his speech addressing the figures this morning in Ottawa.
“This is the largest three-year reduction in poverty in Canadian history, and poverty is at its lowest point on record in Canada.”