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UCP bill will allow private sale of blood

Tany Yao, UCP MLA for Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo, has brought forward Bill 204 that will repeal Alberta’s ban on the private purchase of human blood.

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The UCP is about to repeal a law in Alberta that bans the private sale of blood.

Tany Yao, UCP MLA for Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo, has brought forward Bill 204 that will repeal Alberta’s ban on the private purchase of human blood.

In 2017, the NDP passed the Voluntary Blood Donations Act, which banned everyone except for the Canadian Blood Services from paying for plasma and other blood products.

“A secure supply of plasma is a cornerstone of a modern twenty-first century health care system. The repeal of the Voluntary Blood Donations Act will help patients by making our plasma supply less dependent on international supply which can be unreliable,” Yao said.

Bill advocate Whitney Goulstone, Executive Director Canadian Immunodeficiencies Patient Organization (CIPO), noted last summer Canada experienced its first IG (Immune Globulin) shortage.

Kate van der Meer, said the bill, if it becomes law, will make her life easier.

“I was originally scheduled to switch to SCIG (Subcutaneous Immune Globulin) in May 2019. Due to the shortage, this did not happen. Instead, I had to continue traveling to the hospital every 3 weeks, and struggle to care for my 3 young children while recovering from each intravenous infusion. This continued until the end of September 2019 when the shortage eased and Canadian Blood Services began allowing patients to switch to SCIG again,” she said, in a statement in the government press release.

“Patients have suffered because of our apathy, and because of the Voluntary Blood Donations Act.”

Canada as a whole only supplies 13.5 per cent of the plasma needed for the production of the IG and other plasma therapies used for the treatment of Canadian patients.

The NDP is on the record as opposing the new bill.

“If passed, this bill will divert donations away from Canadian Blood Services to private buyers, who can then sell them to the highest bidder on world markets,” said NDP Health Critic David Shepherd.

“This is very bad for Albertans. It flies directly in the face of the Krever Inquiry.”

 The Krever Inquiry investigated Canada’s tainted blood scandal, in which tens of thousands of people were infected with hepatitis C or HIV through tainted blood products.

The inquiry’s report led to the creation of a single national agency, Canadian Blood Services. 

Ontario, Quebec and B.C. also have legislated bans on the purchase of human blood. Manitoba has a single paid-donation centre for rare blood types that predates the Krever Inquiry.

Saskatchewan and New Brunswick have private blood purchasing locations. 

Shepherd said: “This isn’t a partisan issue – our single public voluntary system has served Albertans well for decades, and through this global pandemic.  Allowing private buyers to divert donations away from Canadian Blood Services will cause terrible harm to Canada’s supply. Tany Yao’s bill is a terrible mistake, and I hope members of the UCP caucus will join us in defeating it.”

Peter Martin Jaworski, Ph.D., an Associate Teaching Professor in Strategy, Ethics, Economics and Public Policy at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business has made the case for allowing blood products to be sold.

“In order to meet the demands of patients, every country has come to rely increasingly on plasma from the United States, one of the few countries that permits some form of payment for plasma. The United
States is responsible for 70% of the global supply of plasma. Along with the other countries that permit a form of payment for plasma donations (including Germany, Austria, Hungary, and Czechia), they
together account for nearly 90% of the total supply,” he wrote in a paper called Bloody Well Pay Them.

“This situation is unsustainable, a risk to security, and, most importantly, a threat to the millions of patients who currently depend on plasma therapies, those who will in future, and those who would benefit from them but do not have access.

“In order to ensure a safe, secure, and sufficient supply of plasma therapies, the UK, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia should withdraw prohibitions on voluntary remunerated plasma collections, and thereby ensure domestic security of supply for our patients, and begin to contribute to the global supply of plasma.”

David Clement, Toronto-based North American Affairs Manager for the Consumer Choice Center (CCC), said “We applaud the Government of Alberta and MLA Tany Yao for putting this forward. A ban on paid blood plasma was ridiculous to begin with, especially considering that 70 per cent of Canada’s blood plasma supply comes from the USA, where they compensate donors.

“Blood plasma is used for a variety of medical treatments, and plays and important role in the fight against Covid-19. Our hope is that by allowing for compensation, more Albertans will donate blood plasma and help the province overcome the persistent shortages that occur. Czechia (previously the Czech Republic) legalized paying for blood plasma, and saw a 7 fold increase in donations. If that were to happen in Alberta it would be cause for celebration, not condemnation.” said Clement.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard

dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

Twitter.com/nobby7694

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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HEAR THE TAPES: Secret tapes of CNN execs talking about shaping the news to be released

James O’Keefe, from Project Veritas released a tape Tuesday morning of CNN executives sitting in stunned silence when they were informed the tapes were going to be released.

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Secretly recorded tapes of CNN’s editorial morning meetings are being released Tuesday night.

James O’Keefe, from Project Veritas released a tape Tuesday morning of CNN executives sitting in stunned silence when they were informed the tapes were going to be released.

CNN president Jeff Zucker ordered the Tuesday called stopped and demanded new procedures for the morning call.

O’Keefe unmuted himself and revealed to them he has two months worth of recordings provided by a “brave inside sources.”

He said the recordings between Zucker and producers will show the thinking behind CNN’s slanted news.

“I think Mr. Zucker is shaking in his boots right now. I think he’s very afraid of what may be coming,” said O’Keefe.

Project veritas tweet

The hashtag #CNNtapes will start releasing the tapes at 7 p.m. (EST) Tuesday night and throughout the week.

Project Veritas is an American right-leaning activist group founded by O’Keefe in 2010. The group uses undercover techniques to reveal supposed liberal bias and alleged corruption. 

In an email to group supporters, O’Keefe said that the recording that they will “be releasing will give you some insight as to why Zucker has such a tough time answering questions about journalistic integrity.”

This is one of the first tapes.

The Western Standard will update the story as the tapes are released.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

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Liberals backtrack on section of gun grab law

The new policy was to come into effect Monday, but has been put off until Dec. 1, 2023.

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Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government is deferring the “marking” section of their gun grab law.

The new policy was to come into effect Monday, but has been put off until December 1, 2023.

“The existing Firearms Marking Regulations under the Firearms Act, scheduled to come into force on December 1, 2020, have been deferred until December 1, 2023. The Government will use the deferral period to continue consulting with partners and develop an effective markings regime that is appropriate for Canada, balancing the needs of law enforcement with the impact on firearms businesses and owners, while prioritizing public safety,” said the government in a release.

“Firearms markings enables law enforcement to trace crime guns, and is most successful when paired with records of ownership and imports.

“In the absence of record-keeping requirements for non-restricted firearms, consultations with law enforcement and industry led to the conclusion that the existing Regulations, as conceived in 2004, are ineffective in facilitating successful tracing of crime guns.

“While the Regulations have been deferred, the Government remains committed to firearms markings regulations as part of its broader firearms strategy to protect public safety, including the prohibition of “assault-style” firearms announced this past spring.”

On May 1, 2020, the federal government prohibited buying, using and selling thousands of firearms.

There are 316,791 licensed firearms owners in Alberta.

The national police union that represents the RCMP has blasted the gun grab plan for doing nothing to stop the flow of illegal guns into the country, and driving previously legal firearms into the black market.

The union said 2,242 illegal guns used in crimes in Canada last year were traced back to manufacturers in the U.S. Three of the four firearms used in the tragic mass shooting in Portapique, N.S, in April 2020, were obtained illegally in the U.S.

The union said Stats Canada data shows Canada reported 678 homicides in 2019, and that 261 (38 per cent) of them were gun-related fatal shootings.

Of those 261 homicides, over 60 per cent were committed with a handgun, as opposed to a rifle.

Trudeau’s Liberal government announced in May they are banning 1,500 different makes and models of what he called “military-style” and “assault-style” guns in Canada. Most firearms experts say that the Liberal failed to define what constitutes “military-style” and “assault-style” firearms beyond aesthetics.

The ban came into effect immediately and was ordered by the cabinet without any bill or debate in Parliament.

In response to the federal order, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe said their provinces will look at appointing its own chief firearms officers.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

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Farrell calls for Calgary law to ban cat-calls

Calling in “street harassment”, Coun. Druh Farrell is calling for public input on a potential bylaw to make such actions illegal.

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The old caricature of construction workers cat-calling when a pretty girl walks by could soon be outlawed in Calgary.

Calling it “street harassment”, Councilor Druh Farrell is calling for public input on a potential bylaw to make such actions illegal.

Farrell said street harassment includes things like unwelcome comments, gestures and actions made primarily to women by people they don’t know. 

“It’s most frequently an attack, a verbal attack on women but it’s also against many LGBTQ people,” Farrell told CBC.

“We certainly see that harassment happening in Calgary.”

Farrell said a Statistics Canada report that found one-in-three girls and women were victims of unwanted sexual behaviour in the previous year.

“With all of our bylaws, we look at education first and then establish a social norm. It’s not OK to harass strangers on the street,” said Farrell to CBC.

She notes other Canadian cities including Edmonton, Vancouver and London have already passed bylaws to regulate street harassment.

If Farrell’s motion is approved by council, they would get a report back from administration on the issue in the first quarter of 2022.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

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