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Desperation as Joe Biden stalls on rescinding Trump rules keeping visa holders out of US
The Independent, February 17, 2021
Thousands of US visa applicants and beneficiaries around the world were stuck in limbo as US President JoenewFile Biden weighed whether to rescind Trump-era rules keeping them out of the country. I spoke with a few of the families affected by Presidential Proclamation 10014 – the Trump policy that barred certain visa holders from entering the US because they were perceived as presenting a “risk” to the US job market during the country’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. The rule was rescinded several days after this feature was published.

Asylum seekers at Penally camp accuse Home Office of ignoring repeated complaints over food and conditions
The Independent, January 8, 2021 WhatsApp Image 2020-12-29 at 15.58.08 (2) (1)
Asylum seekers housed at the Penally military camp in Pembrokeshire, Wales say they are growing desperate after having their repeated complaints over the food and conditions at the site ignored. For weeks, asylum seekers living at the camp have been raising concerns over the quality of the food provided on-site, as well as of having to live in cold and cramped conditions in the midst of a pandemic that has seen coronavirus case numbers soar to record-breaking numbers.

Blaze breaks out amid tensions over COVID-19 outbreak in U.K. army barracks housing asylum seekers
CBC, January 28, 2021
A fire broke out at a former military barracks being used to house asylum seekers in Britain on Friday as tensions over the government’s handling of a recent coronavirus outbreak at the facility flared.

BLM global leaders: ‘It feels like there is actually change happening now’ download (14)
Newsweek International cover story, June 26, 2020
In the wake of George Floyd’s death, mass demonstrations have risen up around the world, with protesters demanding an end to police brutality and for systemic racism to be addressed. Protest leaders around the globe speak with Newsweek about the work that needs to be done to address racial injustice.

BLM Co-founder: ‘The entire world is saying Black Lives Matter’
Newsweek, June 26, 2020
Seven years have passed since Patrisse Cullors and fellow activists Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi launched the Black Lives Matter movement in response to the acquittal of the man who killed Trayvon Martin, an unarmed Black teenager shot while walking home in Miami Gardens, Florida. Cullors spoke with me about what’s changed since then, what hasn’t and what the BLM movement means today, in the wake of George Floyd’s death and its impact on the movement for racial justice.

Root Cause: The coffee you drink could be connected to why many Hondurans are fleeing to the U.S. border
Newsweek magazine spread, September 6, 2019download-15 (1)
In September 2019, I traveled to Honduras for a week-long series looking at the push factors driving asylum seekers to the U.S. border amid international focus on the Trump administration’s immigration policies. The plight of coffee growers in Corquín highlights the unique circumstances that can drive families to risk the journey to the U.S. in search of refuge and opportunity.

‘My suffering ended the day I met them’: Meet the Americans opening their homes to families seeking asylum in the U.S. 
Newsweek, July 2, 2018

Roger and Beth, a Rhode Islagettyimages-980511888-1nd couple in their late sixties, had been watching, “horrified,” as the Trump administration launched its “zero tolerance” campaign to crack down on undocumented immigrants in the U.S., seeing thousands of children separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border. Now, the couple has decided to take action, joining hundreds of Americans who have opened their doors to families seeking asylum in the U.S.

U.S. border agents routinely detaining families in ‘freezing cells
Newsweek, February 28, 2018 gettyimages-923436734-1

U.S. border agents are routinely holding families, including young children, in “freezing cells” and conditions that violate international and national policies, a new report by Human Rights Watch alleges. The 44-page report details the experiences of dozens of people, including children, who say they were held in freezing holding cells, sometimes for days on end.

H-1B visa users look north to Canada as Trump cracks down on program
, February 26, 2018


Highly skilled foreign workers who have come to the U.S. on H-1B visas are looking to take their skills north, as the Trump administration moves to place tighter restrictions on the program. Vikram Rangnekar, the founder of—a platform that helps foreign workers in the tech industry make the move from the United States to Canada—said his site has attracted thousands of people looking to head north over recent months.

Donald Trump threatens to pull ICE agents out of California
 February 23, 2018

President Donald Trump has threatened to pull U.S. Immigration and Customs gettyimages-921717672Enforcement (ICE) agents out of California on Thursday, accusing the state’s police of being soft on crime. The U.S. leader said California was doing a “lousy management job” and accused the state of protecting “horrible criminals” by allowing the existence of sanctuary cities, which limit their cooperation with the federal government when it comes to enforcing immigration law.

Refugees held at Lesvos detention centre resorting to self-harm to escape desperate living conditionsmoria-6-janice-0
The Independent, September 23, 2017
Refugees on Greece’s Lesvos island say they have turned to self-harming, in the hope that their actions will lead to a faster release from the poor conditions inside the detention centre.

‘Mother of all bombs’ death toll rises to 94, Afghan authorities say
The Independent, April 14, 2017air-strike-4

At least 94 Isis militants have been killed in an attack that saw the US military drop the largest non-nuclear weapon it has ever used in combat, Afghan officials say. Ataullah Khogyani, spokesman for the provincial governor in Nangarhar, where the bomb fell, said the number of Isis members dead was up from the 36 reported a day earlier.

Stockholm attack: Uzbekistan says West was warned about suspect’s Isis links
The Independent, April 14, 2017stockholm-suspect

Uzbekistan says it had warned “Western partners” about the suspect in the Stockholm truck attack that left four people dead last week. The country’s foreign minister, Abdulaziz Kamilov, told reporters on Friday that Uzbekistan’s security services had flagged Rakhmat Akilov’s links to Isis before the attack.

Serbian protesters accuse media of turning a blind eye on anti-corruption rallies

The Independent, Dec 6, 2016serbia

Thousands of protesters gathered outside the Serbian government headquarters in Belgrade on Saturday for the sixth day in a row to rally against corruption, after the overwhelming election victory of Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić. But despite daily rallies, protesters claim they are not receiving widespread coverage due to a media blackout.

Stockholm attack suspect confirmed as driver of lorry that ploughed into crowds
The Independent, April 8, 2017stockholm-memorial

A man arrested on suspicion of a terror attack in Stockholm is suspected of being the driver of the lorry that ploughed into crowds in a shopping area in the Swedish capital, police have revealed. “The person in question has been arrested as the culprit … in this case the driver,” police spokesman Lars Bystrom said.

What Trump was doing while his health care bill was pulled from Congress floor
The Independent, March 24, 2017trump truck

A man arrested on suspicion of a terror attack in Stockholm is suspected of being the driver of the lorry that ploughed into crowds in a shopping area in the Swedish capital, police have revealed. “The person in question has been arrested as the culprit … in this case the driver,” police spokesman Lars Bystrom said.

London photo exhibition highlights refugee crises from Second World War to Syria
The Independent, Dec 6, 2016amnesty-libya

As the British government struggles to stay on track to meet its goal of resettling 20,000 Syrian refugees by 2020, a new photography exhibition in London aims to remind the UK of the lengths it has gone to to help refugees in the past – and how much more it could be doing now.

Aleppo: Chilling photos show ancient city’s destruction since Syrian conflict started
The Independent, Oct 16, 2016 aleppo-before-after

With so much of the historic city destroyed, it can be difficult to imagine what Aleppo looked like not long ago before the conflict in Syria began. That’s why a business owner in the war-torn city has been working to remind people of the rich heritage that’s being lost.

Picasso Portraits: a glimpse into the mind of a genius

The Independent, Oct 12, 2016
A new exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery lays bare the true breadth of Picasso’s
genius, but it also serves as a telling biography of the artist himself.

Picasso’s granddaughter Diana Widmaier-Picasso helps paint a portrait of the elusive artist.

How a London artist is shining a light on FGM
The Independent, Sept 19, 2016fgm1

At first, Aida Silvestri turned to art as a way to cope with her own experience with FGM. But now, her work is being used to highlight the issue across London – and help other victims who have been subjected to the practice

Idle No More, Black Lives Matter demand action on Attawapiskat suicide crisis
CBC NewsApr 13, 2016 attawap

Protesters are demanding that the federal government take immediate action to address the recent spate of suicide attempts in Attawapiskat First Nation in northern Ontario.

As many as 20 members of Idle No More and Black Lives Matter have been occupying the Toronto office of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) since mid-morning, demanding that the federal government take action.

Rob Ford tributes pile up as ailing former Toronto mayor battles cancer
CBC NewsMar 18, 2016

Toronto Mayor John Tory this morning joined a list of well-wishers sending messages to Coun. Rob Ford as the former mayor battles cancer in hospital surrounded by his family.

Tory, who clashed with Ford during the 2014 mayoral campaign before health reasons forced Ford out of the race, said on Twitter Friday morning that his thoughts are with Ford “as he continues to battle cancer.”

Canada’s space policy enters orbit of election campaign

CBC NewsOct 11, 2015


The recent discovery of evidence of running water on Mars has breathed new life into excitement around the future of space exploration. In recent weeks, the topic’s even made its way into Canada’s federal election campaign, with parties promising long-term space industry strategies for the first time in decades.

Olivia Chow and Adam Vaughan in tight Spadina-Fort York race

By Chantal Da Silva and David Common, CBC NewsOct 12, 2015

fedelxn-liberals-20150912Federal candidates across the country are looking to score in big cities, but few races are as high-profile as the one playing out in downtown Toronto’s Spadina-Fort York riding.  This is one race where many voters aren’t just casting their ballots for their chosen party or whom they envision as the next prime minister. Many are equally invested in who will be the riding’s next MP.

Which leader has answered the most questions (so far) and what does it all  mean?

CBC NewsSep 02, 2015

harper-trudeau-mulcairAt the start of his campaign, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair took some heat for declining to answer questions from reporters at his kick-off event. Conservative Leader Stephen Harper enforced his five-question cap that day, while Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau chose not to impose any limits.But since then, CBC News data shows Mulcair has made up for lost time by fielding the most questions
of the three leading candidates since the campaign started.

Tory senators expense business-class flights with spouses 

By Timothy Sawa, Shannon Kari and Chantal Da Silva, CBC News

alberta-senator-scott-tannasThe top-spending Conservative senators routinely purchased high-priced business class airfares and repeatedly used public money to bring spouses with them on trips to Ottawa, even as the Senate expense scandal was in full swing last fall.

Subway agrees to end use of controversial after food blogger’s protest

CBC News Posted: Feb 06, 2014

food-blogger-vani-hariSubway says it will be discontinuing use of a chemical found not only in its bread, but also in yoga mats, shoe soles and rubber caps after an online petition made waves across the web.
Food blogger Vani Hari — who successfully petitioned Kraft to remove the neon orange dye responsible for its signature Macaroni & Cheese colouring last year— is behind the effort.


Pride Toronto events to go on with increased security in wake prideof Orlando attack
CBC News Posted: June 13, 2016

The plan for 2016 Pride Toronto will not be altered in response to the deadly attack on
a gay nightclub in Florida, but the month-long festival will have increased security, the organization’s Executive Director has confirmed.

Expectant moms say Pickering clinic gave them identical 3D ultrasound images

CBC News Posted: May 18, 2016

A group of expecting mothers is outraged after receiving identical ultrasound photos from a clinic in Pickering, Ont.

For more than 20 parents, what they thought was their first glimpse of their babies was actually a generic printout of someone else’s child provided by Babyview 3D Prenatal Imaging.

Fort McMurray bride loses wedding dress in wildfire, Torontontians step in 
 CBC News Published: May 05, 2016

A bride-to-be from Fort McMurray says she’s overwhelmed by the support from Torontonians who helped her get a wedding dress to replace the one destroyed in the wildfire that is consuming much of the Alberta community.

Uber’s in-app features create job opportunities for deaf drivers 
CBC News Published: Apr 21, 2016

For many Uber users, much of the appeal of the ride-hailing service is that most of the transaction can be done through an app. But for one Toronto Uber driver, it’s about much more than convenience. Shafiul Hoque is a deaf driver who says thanks to the company’s technology-driven approach, he has his first job in more than a decade.

Raptors point guard Cory Joseph talks basketball dreams
By Chantal Da Silva and Dwight Drummond, CBC News Published: Apr 13, 2016

Soon, the Toronto Raptors will be back home getting ready for their first-round playoff series against the Indiana Pacers, and homegrown point guard Cory Joseph is hoping to play a big role for his NBA team.

Call an inquest into Andrew Loku’s death, Canadian Mental Health Association says
CBC News Published: Apr 08, 2016

The Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is joining a chorus of calls for a coroner’s inquest into the death of Andrew Loku, the Toronto man who was fatally shot by police in July 2015.

“We have evidence that Andrew was calm at the time of his shooting,” CMHA Toronto executive director Steve Lurie told CBC’s Metro Morning on Friday.

Mississauga firefighters first in Ontario to receive new mental health training
CBC News Published: Apr 08, 2016

Firefighters in Mississauga are the first in the province to benefit from a new program that aims to help first responders cope with the impact of post-traumatic stress disorder.

The Road to Mental Readiness (R2MR) program held its first training session on Friday, with firefighters learning how to recognize signs of mental-health issues and work-related stress in
themselves and their colleagues.

Neville-Lake family should have Brampton park dedicated to them, says petition CBC News Published: Apr 07, 2016

More than 2,900 people have added their names to a petition asking Brampton to name a park after Gary Neville and his three grandchildren Daniel, Harry and Milly, all of whom were killed in an impaired driving crash last year.

The online petition was started five days ago by a man named Denis Langlois, who’s asking the
city to make sure the Neville-Lakes are never forgotten.

Toronto cop gets praise after buying diabetic homeless man lunch
CBC News Published: Mar 02, 2016

A Toronto cop is getting praise from the public after a resident spotted him buying a homeless man lunch.

Const. Ed Parks, a Regent Park neighbourhood officer, says he was on patrol when he noticed a man panhandling on a corner of Richmond and Sherbourne Streets on a cold day last week.


How much more will Canada have to clean up after Donald Trump?
The Independent, Published: March 6, 2017trudeau1

A leaked draft of the Trump administration’s Environmental Protection Agency budget proposal has revealed the US government is considering slashing funds for its Great Lakes protection project, which could affect the drinking water millions of Canadians rely on.

Refugees are fleeing Trump’s America for Canada. Trudeau must act now
The Independent, Published: March 1, 2017refugees

Hundreds of refugees have been braving waist-deep snow and freezing cold temperatures to claim asylum in Canada. But an agreement between the two countries is forcing them to cross illegally. If Justin Trudeau wants to prove that Canada’s doors are truly open to refugees, he must act now to end a dangerous policy.

Justin Trudeau owes his country more than a good meme
The Independent, Published: Feb 16, 2017trudeau-eu

As Canada’s Prime Minister celebrated his country’s Ceta trade deal with the European Union on Thursday, starstruck MEPs seemed to be more concerned with getting the perfect shot of Justin Trudeau. But as much as Trudeau’s admirable aesthetics and shrewd symbolism might be a tonic against right-wing populism, as a Canadian,  it’s hard to forget that
Trudeau owes his country more than a good meme.

Dear Americans, Canada is not your consolation prize
The Independent, Published: November 10, 2016trudeau pride

Distraught Americans hoping to hop the border in the wake of Donald Trump’s election were scouring the web for ways to move to Canada in such high numbers the country’s immigration site crashed.

But as much as Canadians can empathise with those who don’t want to live in a country under Trump’s rule, living in Canada is a huge privilege – one that hundreds of thousands of
people from around the world vie for each year.

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