8 000 Students at Queen’s University Homecoming Weekend Gathering

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After nearly two years of the pandemic, Queen’s University marks its first homecoming weekend in 2 years. “I am asking for your assistance in helping contain the social gatherings and to act responsibly over the coming weekends,” said Principal Patrick Deane. Despite these requests to avoid large gatherings, eight thousand students gathered on 16 October. David Shendlman said, “It’s just a time to celebrate the university. Kind of just have a good time, so I decided to come out.” The celebration quickly led to students on front lawns and bottles thrown. Amid the chaos, the celebration had been labelled an ‘aggregate nuisance party’ by Kingston officers at 4 pm. This led to fines of $2 000 issued by Kingston Police, Durham Regional Police, and Ontario Provincial Police. At 5:20 pm, the ‘aggregate nuisance party’ label was lifted, though police remained to observe activities around the university. [CTV News][By Grace Pu]

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Lucy, NASA’s 981 million dollar space probe, sent to the Trojan Asteroids

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On 16 October 5:34 am EDT, Lucy was launched from the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. Over the next 12 years, the Lucy Probe will explore 8 different asteroids – 7 Trojans around Jupiter and the Donaldjohanson asteroid, a Main Belt asteroid. Trojan asteroids are remnants of the material which formed the gas giants and have never been studied in detail. Lucy will use Earth’s orbit three times to slingshot the probe on the correct path. The first gravity assist will be in 2022 and will direct Lucy’s trajectory beyond the orbit of Mars. The second, in 2024, will propel Lucy towards the main asteroid belt. Lucy’s first Trojan encounter will be the Trojan swarm ahead of Jupiter in 2027. In 2031, the probe will travel back to Earth for its third boost and to direct it at the trailing swarm of Trojans behind Jupiter for a 2033 encounter. [NASA] [By Michael Yang]

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Inflation Rates Rise To Highest Value in Almost 20 years

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As prices continue to hike, the inflation rate grows to a staggering 4.4%, the highest since 2003. Caused by the pandemic disrupting supply chains as well as the balance of supply and demand, with the global semiconductor chips shortage being cited as an example. Effects are felt far and wide, as prices of food rose sharply at a rate faster than anything in the past 6 years. These increases are putting some meats like chicken, beef, and pork outside of the budget of most consumers, with meats growing over 10%, while fresh produce offers some relief, being slightly cheaper. These prices exceed expectations made by policymakers, and the effects of this lingering growth may prompt Canada’s central bank to raise lending rates to lower spending, with the Bank of Canada governor Tiff Macklem saying that “[these supply disruptions] are proving to be more complicated and they could last a little longer than we originally thought”. [CBC] [By Gavin Xue]

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Kidnappers Demand $17 Million to free Christan Missionary Group

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This past weekend, at Port-Au-Prince, Haiti, 17 Christian missionaries, including 1 Canadian and 5 children, have been kidnapped by a gang, said the Christian Aid Ministries, a missionary group based in the United States. Haiti has been in a state of chaos for years and with the recent July assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, and the natural disasters that followed, the situation is getting worse. In response, some gangs have resorted to kidnapping and ransoming to earn money. The gang that kidnapped these missionaries has recently stated that they are willing to accept  $17 million for their release, $1 million for each person. [The NYT] [By James Zhang]

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Federal Government Spends $7.4 Billion on New Programs for COVID-19

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The federal government has announced a few changes following the previous COVID-19 programs, moving from a wide range of support to support for where it is needed. The five old programs, the Canada Recovery Benefit, Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy, Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit(CRB), and the Canada Recovery Caregiver Benefit(CRCB)will expire on Saturday. Two of them aim to help businesses while the others help individuals. The government will extend the Canada Recovery Hiring Program to May 8. Two new programs will be introduced, namely the Tourism and Hospitality Recovery program and the Hardest-Hit recovery program. The CRB will be replaced by Canada’s Worker Lockdown Benefit. This replacement program will be available until May 20, 2022 and will provide $300 a week to eligible workers. [CTV News] [CBC news] [By Yolanda Zhou]