Last November, the Canso Causeway hosted a large demonstration in memory of Cassidy Bernard.

MABOU: The Code Blue rang across the speakers at Dalbrae Academy at approximately noon on October 29 and the school entered into a complete lockdown.

After receiving a report of a possible threat to the school made using Instagram, school administration immediately implemented the lockdown procedure and reported the alleged threat to the RCMP and the Strait Regional Centre for Education (SRCE), in accordance with their School Emergency Management Plan.

As part of the school’s ongoing efforts to educate students, Gillis said Dalbrae Academy staff are facilitating in-class discussions and arranged for presentations related to the responsible and respectful use of social media.

Jason Boudrot

PORT HAWKESBURY: A Strait area lawyer and former president of the Nova Scotia Liberal Party was suspended until further notice by the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society.

Jason Boudrot had his practising certificate suspended pursuant to Section 37(1) and (2) of the Legal Profession Act, effective October. 31, one day after he resigned as president at the Nova Scotia Liberal Party for personal reasons. Boudrot was a managing partner in Boudrot Rodgers Law Offices.

In a media statement issued by Adam Rodgers, he said Boudrot reported to the society on October 29 that he had misappropriated money from clients’ trust funds.

GOLDBORO: After overcoming every regulatory hurdle placed in front of them, Pieridae Energy Ltd. was greenlit by the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board (UARB) to construct their Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facility in Guysborough County.

Pieridae’s LNG facility, projected to cost upwards of $10 billion and be one of the country’s first natural gas export facilities, now has to finalize supply and transportation issues before making a final investment decision.

In their decision released on October 31, the UARB said they will issue the permit to construct the facility in Goldboro, subject to a set of conditions in addition to the conditions provided by Lloyd’s Register , the UARB’s certifying authority and consulting service.

PAQTNKEK: Paqtnkek First Nation announced that Wilsons Fuels and Calgary-based Husky will team up to supply an Esso-branded outlet in the community’s new $8 million showcase development, the Bayside Travel Centre, 20 kilometers east of Antigonish.

Husky will supply diesel fuel to the station’s card-lock operation as a convenience for long-haul truckers traveling on the Trans-Canada Highway to and from Cape Breton and Newfoundland and Labrador.

NOVA SCOTIA: The Grand Chief of the Eastern Woodland Métis Nation of Nova Scotia, a group which came under fire recently for using their ‘Métis cards’ to receive HST breaks, claims they were cleared of all fraudulent charges by the RCMP.

But the RCMP is not the only organization looking into the Eastern Woodland Métis, as both Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) and the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) have active investigations.

Despite provided information, Grand Chief Mary Lou Parker acknowledges she’s told her members to show their ‘Métis cards’ when making purchases, and if a business gives a tax break, than that’s on them.

In June, officials with Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs met with seven Nova Scotia Métis groups including; Eastern Woodland Métis Nation Nova Scotia, Bras d’Or Lake / Unama’ki Voyageur Métis Nation, Highlands Métis Nation Association, and the Eastern Shore Métis Nation Association.

PORT HAWKESBURY: Town councillors defeated a motion to hold a plebiscite on a controversial component of the Destination Reeves Street Project.

During the regular monthly meeting on November 6 at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre, town councillor Hughie MacDougall presented a motion to ask residents if they support reducing Reeves Street from four lanes to three lanes.

MacDougall and Mark McIver, the town’s new deputy mayor, voted in favour of the plebiscite, while the town’s mayor, Brenda Chisholm-Beaton and Trevor Boudreau voted against for a 2-2 result. According to the Municipal Government Act, a tied vote on a motion classifies as a defeated motion.

Boudreau said he doesn’t see a plebiscite solving any of the town’s problems, but only creating more, as it will divide the community.

Erin MacEachen, the town’s finance director, advised council that a plebiscite would cost an estimated $17,000.

Mayor Chisholm-Beaton said due to the confusion surrounding, she wouldn’t support the plebiscite as a public vote isn’t necessary at this point.

ANTIGONISH: An information technology services (ITS) blackout at StFX that lasted nearly five days is now being reported by the university as a ‘cryptocoin mining’ cyber-attack.

In a statement issued on the university’s Web site on November 4, ITS is continuing to reinstate the servers within the StFX network with a staggered approach in bringing the systems back on-line to minimize any potential risk.

Cindy MacKenzie, a spokesperson with the university said their security systems prompted an alert that indicated a cryptomining attempt had taken place.

The breach caused StFX to disable network systems on all 150 servers and implement heightened security measures, which caused disruptions in accessing e-mail, WiFi, the learning platform Moodle, Declining Cash Balance (DCB) and debit transactions, the school’s on-line course system, and shared storage space and drives on the StFX network.

Laurie Pottie’s contribution to the Festival Art Gallery at the Bonnie Brae Club in St. Peter’s was a painting she named Red Justice; a stark reminder of the ongoing issue of missing and murdered Indigenous Women.

WE’KOQMA’Q: A cousin of the 22-year-old female who was found dead in her We’koqma’q First Nation home said the morning of October 24 will be forever etched into her memory and will permanently haunt her family.

The name of the deceased has not been officially released, but family members confirmed the woman’s identity as Cassidy Jean Bernard, and that her six-month-old twins were present in the home when the body was discovered and are now being cared for by family members.

Annie Bernard-Daisley, Cassidy’s cousin and three-term band councillor with We’koqma’q First Nation, said people have to start being more courageous and speak out on this issue.

Hot on the heels of the #justiceforcassidy campaign that hit social media, Bernard-Daisley also launched the #floodfacebookforcassidyinitiative, which invites women to post pictures of themselves in red dresses on Facebook to maintain awareness of her cousin’s death and its aftermath.

The initiative saw red dresses – a nationally-recognized symbol for the death and disappearance of indigenous women – hanging in windows and showing up at prominent public landmarks, across Cape Breton including the Canso Causeway.

Capers 4 Healthcare marched across the Canso Causeway last November to protest cuts to the health care sector.

STRAIT AREA: On November 16, Capers 4 Healthcare marched across the Canso Causeway just before noon.

According to the group, they are fighting against the announced closure of Cape Breton community hospitals, the loss of emergency room services, the doctor shortage, any loss of healthcare services, increased travel and wait times for care, and the lack of transparency from the provincial government.

Along with getting the attention of provincial officials, Capers 4 Healthcare is also trying to raise public awareness.

MULGRAVE: The Town of Mulgrave saw a changing of the guard at the top of its administration with the announcement that CAO Jim Davis is stepping down and retiring.

Davis, who took on the role as Chief Administrative Officer just under one year ago, will remain with the municipality until a new CAO is appointed and then will assist with the town’s finances until the end of April.

The announcement was made by Ralph Hadley, the town’s mayor, during November’s regular town council meeting on November 5.

We’koqma’q First Nation recently announced a $100,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or people responsible for Cassidy Bernard’s death.

PORT HASTINGS: Four weeks after the loss of a local Indigenous woman, family, friends and community members across Cape Breton Island marched together in solidarity across the Canso Causeway last Wednesday.

More than 400 demonstrators gathered on the Cape Breton side of the causeway, including members from all five First Nation communities across the island, being bused in as they marched to the beat of the drum, waving flags and memorial posters, many wearing red to call attention on missing and murdered Indigenous women.

As the RCMP wait for the results of the medical examiner’s report, they remain tight-lipped about the case and will not provide any details, including Cassidy’s name, and will only call the death “suspicious.”

The rally came just one day after We’koqma’q First Nation announced a $100,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or people responsible for Cassidy’s death.

GUYSBOROUGH: Unlike almost every other municipality across the province, officials with the Municipality of the District of Guysborough (MODG) vetoed the option to give themselves a pay raise.

The pay raise, which would have come into effect in January, was recommended by the Nova Scotia Federation of Municipalities (NSFM) as a way to offset the upcoming federal tax changes.

Barry Carroll, the municipality’s Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), said notices from the NSFM advised the one-third portion of the stipend elected officials received tax-free has been discontinued by the federal government.

Without discussion, councillors quickly voted against an increase to their stipend to make up the difference in take-home pay during November’s regular municipal council meeting.

ANTIGONISH: Paqtnkek First Nation Band Council and Council for the Municipality of the County of Antigonish took part in their first official joint council meeting on November 20 at the county’s office in Antigonish.

Warden Owen McCarron said the bodies also met in Heatherton the day before for discussions, noting both meetings went well.

The warden said the councils discussed the Paqtnkek Interchange Project, as well as areas where they can do things together that will benefit the whole region.