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November 24, 2009

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Hardcore drugs with hardly a wait.

On the streets of Vancouver, crack and crystal meth can come almost as easily as buying a Big Mac. That's the conclusion of a decade-long study conducted by the Urban Health Research Initiative at the B-C Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS.

Dr. Evan Wood is the co-author of the study. We reached him in Vancouver.


LAURA'S THEME Duration: 00:00:20
Album: BRICK, SOUNDTRACK
Label: LAKESHORE
Persons/Roles:
NATHAN JOHNSON - COMPOSER
CHINA KENT - PIANO

E-MAIL: ADOPTIONS / ORPHAN REPORT Duration: 00:04:23

Last night, we told you about a new Canadian Medical Association Journal editorial, highlighting the need for more children to be adopted from within the welfare system. The authors suggested that children are, as they put it, "aging out" of the system -- and facing serious problems when they enter the adult world.

After our interview with CMAJ editor-in-chief Dr. Paul Hébert, we got this e-mail from Christine Cunningham of Burnaby, B.C.

She wrote:

"As a children's lawyer, my perspective is that it is a sad reality that many children who come into the foster system have suffered severe neglect and/or abuse in their biological home.

When they are removed from their biological homes and placed in foster care, the children often do not receive the extra-special quality of care they require. Parents hoping to adopt a child -- especially a first child -- may not have the personal skills, experience and financial resources to take on these special needs children.

"As a society we need to take a very close look at the next home we are sending these children into, and what resources the state is willing to provide to support the adoption. The children deserve better than another failed family situation.

That e-mail came to us from Christine Cunningham in Burnaby, B.C.

If you're planning on adopting, that CMAJ editorial may have complicated your plans. And today, a report by the international organization Save The Children will complicate them further.

The report claims that four out of every five children in orphanages around the world actually have one living parent. It says that poorer parents are being coerced by institutions into giving up their children -- believing that this will allow them a better education, and that their children will be returned to them when they are older.

Of course, that's not happening. Instead, children in orphanages are constantly being put at risk, facing forced labour, abuse, rape and trafficking.

Save The Children also suggests that the rise in the number of orphanages in recent years indicates that they have become a big business of sorts, profiting off the the monetary support of governments and donors. Monetary support that the report says should be used to support individual families.

David Morley is the President and CEO of Save the Children Canada. We reached him at his office in Toronto.


RACINE D'ENNEADE Duration: 00:00:31
Album: AWARDS FOR WORLD MUSIC 2004
Label: UNION SQUARE, MANTDCD223
Persons/Roles:
MEHDI HADDAB - COMPOSER
DUOUD - FOLK GROUP

S.O.D.: CAMUS Duration: 00:02:23

It's one of the hardest buildings to get into in France -- if you're dead, that is. The Pantheon is reserved for the so-called "great men" of the nation. And interment there is so severely restricted that only a parliamentary act allows access.

So it would seem that French President Nicolas Sarkozy would be well within his rights to suggest that celebrated French writer Albert Camus be moved to the Left Bank necropolis. But maybe Mr. Sarkozy should have done a little more research before he put the idea forward.

It wouldn't have taken much reading for the president to realize that Monsieur Camus was a non-conformist, and that his writing stressed the importance of humility. He was known to avoid state pomp.

But evidently Mr. Sarkozy hadn't recently brushed up on L'√Čtranger. And no sooner did the president announce the writer's new resting place than he was accused of political opportunism, and trying to gain favour with the left. Which would be understandable: the president has a sixty per cent disapproval rating in France at the moment.

Albert Camus's close friend and biographer Olivier Todd is the latest voice to join the protest against the move. For today's Sound of the Day -- or our "Son Du Jour" -- we bring you part of a conversation he had on BBC Radio.


ENTER SANDMAN Duration: 00:00:22
Album: AMPLIFIED: A DECADE OF REINVENTING THE CELLO/APOCALYPTICA
Label: ISLAND
Persons/Roles:
KIRK HAMMETT - COMPOSER
JAMES HETFIELD - COMPOSER
LARS ULRICH - COMPOSER
APOCALYPTICA - INSTRUMENTAL ENSEMBLE

VINE LADY APOLOGY Duration: 00:01:33

You can't fight City Hall, but you can outlast it.

Some of you might remember Claire Sargent, the Pointe Claire, Quebec woman who cut an unruly vine obscuring the sign for the Beaconsfield Lawn Bowling Club in 2006. Not knowing that cutting a vine is forbidden on public property, the seventy-nine-year-old was obliged to pay more than two thousand dollars in damages.

For the past two years, Claire has tried to get a refund from municipal authorities. But Mayor Bob Benedetti was clear: that wasn't going to happen.

Now, however, there's a new mayor in town.

To tell us more, we reached Claire Sargent in Bradenton, Florida.


DRUG EXEC APPT Duration: 00:01:45

The Canadian Institutes of Health Research is the independent federal body in charge of funding Canada's medical research. Chances are, if you're a Canadian scientist trying to get to the bottom of a particular disease, your beakers, your flasks and your fancy electron microscopes were funded, at least in part, by the CIHR.

So last month, when federal Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq appointed Pfizer Canada's Vice-President, Dr. Benard Prigent, to the CIHR's governing council, some people found it a bitter pill to swallow. NDP health critic Judy Wasylycia-Leis, said the move was akin to: "having the big bad wolf directing the three little pigs on how to build their home."

She's not alone in her concern. Trudo Lemmens is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto. He specializes in legal issues surrounding medical research and the pharmaceutical industry. As It Happens reached him at his office.


GROOVING WITH MR. G Duration: 00:00:21
Album: BLUE BREAK BEATS
Label: BLUE NOTE, CDP7991062
Persons/Roles:
RICHARD GROOVE HOLMES - COMPOSER
RICHARD GROOVE HOLMES - ORGAN

SC/MUSIC: JACKSOUL OBIT Duration: 00:02:39

If you don't believe in love and the power of music, then Haydain Neale probably wasn't your kind of guy. He wore his heart on his sleeve -- even when, as on the cover of his 2003 CD Resurrected, he wore nothing at all.

In the liner notes to that CD, he had this message for the other four members of his band, jacksoul:

"What we do is important. We give people a reason to believe in things like faith, hope and love. Music is the true healer of the soul. It's never too tired to listen and console; always there to understand and counsel. It offers painless treatment and passes no judgment. All this with a few melodies over some dirty grooves."

Tonight, listening to Haydain Neale sing won't be painless. The Canadian soul singer died on Sunday. He was just thirty-nine years old.

He was born in Hamilton in 1970, into a household where music was constantly playing. When it was time to go to university, he enrolled at the University of Guelph, intending to get a degree in Biology. But the music stayed with him -- to the point where he dropped out to form jacksoul with four fellow musicians.

Some of the band's songs were about love, but Haydain Neale was no one-trick pony: he wrote songs about all kinds of subjects. And even his love songs were so lyrically sophisticated that one American label rep told him the band's first album was too smart to make in the U.S. Mr. Neale was unapologetic: as he once told an interviewer, he was a big fan of classic R & B and soul artists -- as he put it, "For every Let's Get It On there was a What's Going On."

When the band started out, they rehearsed in a converted chicken coop. And when their debut, ABsolute, was released in 1996, jacksoul flew the coop in style, gathering fans across the country -- partly due to the band's fantastic live show. The 2000 album Sleepless featured the hit single "Can't Stop", and won a 2001 Juno for "Best R&B/Soul Recording". And in 2004, Haydain Neale won "Songwriter of the Year" honours at the Canadian Urban Music Awards, after his band's third album Resurrected.

On April 30th, 2004, on CBC Radio's Sounds Like Canada, Haydain Neale spoke with Shelagh Rogers about how he kept himself inspired. Here's part of that conversation, for the record.


HIGH JUMPER GETS RECORD BACK Duration: 00:01:21

Back in September, we told you the story of Gretel Bergmann. At the 1936 Berlin Olympics, Ms. Bergmann was an up-and-coming German high jumper, destined for glory. She had already shown her potential by matching the German high-jump record -- five feet, three inches -- on June 30th of that year.

But two weeks after she set that record, Gretel Bergmann was dropped from the German team, her achievement erased -- because she was Jewish. A certain Dora Ratjen ended up representing Germany at the Berlin Olympics. But Ms. Ratjen was actually a man called Horst, posing as a female athlete.

Here's Gretel Bergmann -- now Maureen Bergmann Lambert -- talking to Carol in September, about her experiences with the Nazis.OWEB>


CHILDHOOD Duration: 00:00:21
Album: AWARDS FOR WORLD MUSIC 2004
Label: UNION SQUARE, MANTDCD223
Persons/Roles:
BAWOT - COMPOSER
KROKE - ENSEMBLE

REINDEER DUNG JEWELLERY Duration: 00:01:11

It seems that this year just about everyone is operating with a tighter budget. And zoos are no exception.

Miller Park Zoo in Bloomington, Illinois saw its budget cut by two-hundred-thousand dollars. And so, in response, they've vowed to improve their bottom line -- emphasis on "bottom".

Building on the success of last year's zoo-made reindeer dung ornaments, this year the zoo's zoological society is launching a range of reindeer dung necklaces. Prompting the question: will anyone be prepared to buy this cra-...er...excrement?

Susie Ohley hopes so. She runs the reindeer dung project. We reached her in Bloomington, Illinois.


YEARS Duration: 00:02:11
Album: NOT EVEN IN JULY/JBM
Label: CUSTOM
Persons/Roles:
JBM - COMPOSER
HENRY HIRSCH - PRODUCER
JBM - GUITAR
JBM - PRODUCER

ROMA STERILIZATIONS Duration: 00:00:38

Doctors said it was medically necessary. Human rights groups said it was forced birth control.

Between 1973 and 1991, the Communist government in Czechoslovakia sterilized Roma women. The practice officially ended when Communism fell in 1990. But unofficially, rights organizations say that women were still being sterilized against their will long after that.

Yesterday, the Czech government expressed regret over the illegal sterilization, but stopped short of issuing a full apology.

Gwendolyn Albert is a Roma rights activist in the Czech Republic. We reached her in Prague.


OH ME, OH MY Duration: 00:00:16
Album: ABIGAIL WASHBURN & THE SPARROW QUARTET/ABIGAIL WASHBURN & THE SPARROW QUARTET
Label: NETTWERK, 06700307922(8)
Persons/Roles:
ABIGAIL WASHBURN - COMPOSER
ABIGAIL WASHBURN & THE SPARROW QUARTET - ENSEMBLE

E-MAIL: SPORK CORRECTION Duration: 00:02:00

As It Happens prides itself on its efficiency. And that's why, last week, we brought you the story of a time-saving invention called "The Scrudle" -- part spatula, part scoop, part ladle and part scraper. Its inventor, Margaret O'Callaghan, just won ten-thousand pounds -- about seventeen-thousand bucks Canadian -- for creating the potentially revolutionary device.

During that interview, we also mentioned that another time-saving invention, "The Spork" -- half-spon, half-fork -- was invented in Canada. And that prompted Richard Osborne, of Deep River, Ontario, to e-mail us with this scoop:

"I enjoyed your piece on the 'Scrudle', but I think that you were not quite accurate in suggesting that the 'spork' was a Canadian invention.

"Some writers claim that it was made as far back as the Middle Ages, and that it is actually one of our oldest utensils. Sporks have been mass-manufactured since at least the late eighteen-hundreds in England. Some online dictionaries claim that Edward Lear's 'runcible spoon' in 'The Owl and the Pussy Cat' was a spork -- but others point out that Lear's drawing of the runcible spoon does not have tines.

"A variant is the 'splayd', manufactured by McArthur in Australia in the 1950s, and later in the U.K. by Viners. Our splayds are in frequent use."

That information was spoon-fed -- or rather, splayd-fed -- to us by Richard Osborne of Deep River, Ontario.

Well, Mr. Osborne, we did a little further investigation, and we found out that the spork has in fact been around for many, many years. Nobody knows for sure when it was invented. But in 1996, Canadians Hubert Gagnon and Aldo Balatti patented the design of the ever-handy spork. So while Canada cannot claim to have necessarily invented it, we certainly claim the residuals on its production.

And for those of you who are wondering: a splayd is not so much a spork as a sporfe -- which is to say, a combination of spoon, fork and knife. Yes, a sporfe is a thing.

That's all for now from the Sporfes desk. But we're always ready for you to fork over your opinions. E-mail us at aih@cbc.ca or call Talkback, toll-free, at 1-866-481-5718.OWEB>


DROPPER Duration: 00:00:15
Album: DROPPER
Label: BLUE NOTE, 72435 22841
Persons/Roles:
CHRIS WOOD - COMPOSER
BILLY MARTIN - COMPOSER
JOHN MEDESKI - COMPOSER
MARC RIBOT - GUITAR
JOHN MEDESKI - KEYBOARD
BILLY MARTIN - PERCUSSION
CHRIS WOOD - DOUBLE BASS
MEDESKI MARTIN AND WOOD - JAZZ GROUP
MEDESKI MARTIN AND WOOD - PRODUCER
SCOTTY HARD - PRODUCER

F.O.A.: VELVET REVOLUTION Duration: 00:00:12

And now, we'd like to take you back twenty years, to 1989. From our archives, here are former As It Happens hosts Michael Enright and Alan Maitland:


GOLD RUSH SHIP W/MUSIC Duration: 00:00:57

The A. J. Goddard was all iron and steam, but those who boarded her were hoping for gold. The sternwheeler sailed the cold waters of the Yukon and Northern B.C., during the Gold Rush.

In 1901, the vessel embarked on her last voyage, on Lake Laberge, north of Whitehorse. And she hasn't been seen since. That is, until she was found in her watery grave, in the depths of the frigid lake, by a team of marine archeologists.

James Delgado is the president of the Institute of Nautical Archeology, which helped with the hunt for the shipwreck. He is also the former director of the Vancouver Maritime Museum. We reached him at his home in Vancouver.

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