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October 2012 Archives

Health Spending

Dr. Michael Rachlis

Posted by Robert Doublett

Growth to health care spending in Canada has slowed substantially in recent years.

And health care spending as a percentage of overall GDP is actually declining in this country.

That's according the 16th edition of the Canadian Institute for Health Information's "National Health Expenditure Trends" report.

Released today, the report contradicts conventional wisdom about out of control, unsustainable spending on health care.

And according to my next guest, that's a misconception that needs to be cleared up.

Doctor Michael Rachlis is a health policy analyst and consultant.

Listen audio (runs 6:47)

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Detox Changes

Dr. Linda Courey, Murray MacNeil and Margaret Graham

Posted by Robert Doublett

People being laid off from Addiction Services are speaking out.

The District Health Authority has decided to lay off six people called Counsellor Attendants.

Four are in withdrawal management (or detox) at the Cape Breton Regional Hospital. One position is in Opiate Recovery (or the methadone program) and the other is in the Day program.

The Authority says the changes will enhance the quality and safety of addiction treatment.

The Health Authority says, the attendants don't have the training and credentials needed for the work they were doing. It says they will be replaced with workers more suited to the job requirements.

Dr. Linda Courey is head of Addiction Services and Mental Health, she spoke with CBC's Joan Weeks about the change.

Murray MacNeil and Margaret Graham are worried.... not just about their own futures... but about the quality of addiction treatment. MacNeil has 10 years experience in detox... Graham... 22 years.

Dr. Linda Courey audio (runs 6:20)

Murray MacNeil and Margaret Graham audio (runs 6:46)

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Heart Healthy Kids

Dr. Beth Abramson

Posted by Robert Doublett

There is some data now that shows us that increased physical activity in grades four, five and six's leads to better academic test scores and better cardiovascular fitness levels.

This research was funded by the Nova Scotia Research Foundation and support by a number of organizations including the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

Dr. Beth Abramson joins us to talk about Heart Healthy Kids.

Listen audio (runs 10:34)

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Jason Kenny Reaction

Rodney MacDonald

Posted by Robert Doublett

This morning Gaelic speakers in Nova Scotia awoke to a headline that caught their attention. The Federal Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Jason Kenny, questioned the preservation of heritage languages, calling them Linguistic ghetto's.

Kenney has weighed in on the merits of the language and the government's role in preserving it. Kenney said federal government money should not be used to promote languages that are fighting for survival.


"I think we should focus on the common languages that unite us in our diversity, English and French," said Kenney. "I encourage communities to maintain their heritage languages, be they Gaelic or Punjabi or Mandarin, but that they do so with their own funds."

This comes one day before another Federal Minister, Peter MacKay, is scheduled to make a major funding announcement at St, Ann's Gaelic College.


Rodney MacDonald is the head of St, Ann's Gaelic College, and former Conservative Premiere of Nova Scotia.

Listen audio (runs 9:09)

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Stolen Goods Seizures

Staff Sergeant Mike Kennedy

Posted by Robert Doublett

Cape Breton regional police are trying to track down the owners of some stolen goods.

Overnight last night they seized a wide variety of items, from lawn tractors to electronics.

Wendy Martin spoke with Staff Sergeant Mike Kennedy of the major crime unit.

Listen audio (runs 2:33)

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Long Shots

Trevor J. Adams

Posted by Robert Doublett

This name used to mean something in Cape Breton.

If you talked about Cap MacDonald there would be an entire generation of people who would know exactly who you were talking about and why his name is important.

Today's guest is going to introduce him to a whole new generation of Cape Bretoners, Nova Scotians and Canadians.

Trevor J. Adams has written a book called "Longshots: The Curious Story of the Four Maritime Teams that Played for the Stanley Cup"

Among them, The Sydney Millionaires.

Listen audio (runs 9:12)

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M.V. Miner Update

Premier Daryl Dexter & Abe Shah

Posted by Robert Doublett

The New York Company that was hired to remove the M.V. Miner from Scatarie says it's walking away from the project today unless the Provincial government pulls a stop work order it issued last week .  

Bennington group was supposed to start the work several weeks ago however there have been several delays .

The Labour Department issued the stop work order which required Bennington to hire in independent engineer to complete an assessment on the structural integrity of the vessel .

Bennington says it's tired of the red tape.

Shah says he's provided them with a full report from an independent engineer. And if the province doesn't give him permission to proceed by day's end - he'll pull out of the project, and take legal action.

Premier Daryl Dexter is in Sydney today for a series of meetings. He spoke to reporters today about Bennington and the possible end of their involvement in the project.  Abe Shah spoke with reporters Gary Mansfield and Wendy Martin. 

Premier Daryl Dexter audio (runs 3:17)

Abe Shah: Bennington Group audio (runs 5:23)

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CBRM's New Councillor

Eldon MacDonald

Posted by Robert Doublett

Not much has changed for Cape Breton Regional Municipal Council.

Most of the last sessions councilors who put their names forward were re-elected.

Lowell Cormier was acclaimed and he'll be joining the only newly elected councilor, Eldon MacDonald.

MacDonald was the winner in the highly contested District 5, an area in Sydney that had no incumbent but several citizens putting their names forward.

He joined us in the studio.

Listen audio (runs 8:45)

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A Bumper Crop for Pumpkins!

Posted by Robert Doublett

It's been a bumper crop for pumpkins this year in Nova Scotia.

In the Annapolis Valley, a man grew a 733-kilogram pumpkin, breaking the record for the heaviest one grown in Atlantic Canada.

Then, a week later, Carl Graham of Donkin surpassed that with his pumpkin, weighing in at 18-hundred and 11 pounds; which is 821-kilograms..... the third biggest in the world.

It's also been a big year for the pumpkin yield.

Conrad Niesten runs Hank's Family Farm in Millville.

He spoke to Yvonne LeBlanc-Smith earlier today about the harvest.

Listen audio (runs 5:26)

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The Exit Interview

Cecil Clarke

Posted by Robert Doublett

In the final days of the municipal election campaign people are voting for school board, municipal councillors and we have five candidates running for mayor.

We spoke to the candidates in both the beginning and middle of the campaign and as we round the corner to the last day of voting we've invited the candidates back for one last chat to talk about the weeks that were.

Listen audio (runs 15:09)

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Warm Water Deaths

Osborne Burke

Posted by Robert Doublett

Many of us enjoyed this summer's warmer ocean waters but that increase in temperature was deadly for hundreds of thousands of lobsters.

They were being kept in boxes in the waters along the Cape Breton coast.

Lobster buyers were holding onto them while they tried to find someone to buy them at a fair price.

But that delay getting them to market proved costly for processors such as Osborne Burke.

He's the general manager of Victoria Co-op Fisheries and today he told this story to members of the Nova Scotia's legislature's standing Committee on Resources.

Listen audio (runs 2:30)

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Cape Breton Walk-in Clinic - Expanding Services

Barkaat Ahmad

Posted by Robert Doublett

As we all know, Monday to Friday the walk-in clinic is open on Kings Rd. here in Sydney to take your questions on cold and flu's.

Now they're adding Saturday hours. Barkaat Ahmad is the manager and owner of the clinic.

Listen audio (runs 5:48)

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The Exit Interview

Rankin MacSween

Posted by Robert Doublett

In the final days of the municipal election campaign people are voting for school board, municipal councillors and we have five candidates running for mayor.

We spoke to the candidates in both the beginning and middle of the campaign and as we round the corner to the last day of voting we've invited the candidates back for one last chat to talk about the weeks that were.

Listen audio (runs 13:17)

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The Exit Interview

Wilf Isaac

Posted by Robert Doublett

In the final days of the municipal election campaign people are voting for school board, municipal councillors and we have five candidates running for mayor.

We spoke to the candidates in both the beginning and middle of the campaign and as we round the corner to the last day of voting we've invited the candidates back for one last chat to talk about the weeks that were.

Listen audio (runs 10:36)

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The Exit Interview

Glenn Jessome

Posted by Robert Doublett

In the final days of the municipal election campaign people are voting for school board, municipal councillors and we have five candidates running for mayor.

We spoke to the candidates in both the beginning and middle of the campaign and as we round the corner to the last day of voting we've invited the candidates back for one last chat to talk about the weeks that were.

Listen audio (runs 8:36)

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No EI for Family Members

Darren Earn

Posted by Robert Doublett

Dozens of people in Bay St. Lawrence have found out, they won't be able to collect employment insurance this winter.

That's because the Canada Revenue Agency has determined, they were working for family members for a period of several years, and therefore were not entitled to benefits.

The president of a Manitoba company that helps family run businesses sort through the EI rules is weighing in on the issue. Darren Earn is the president of Grants International.

He says the rules that restrict family members from collecting EI benefits have been in place for many years - but very few Canadians know the rules, or understand them.

The CBC's Wendy Martin spoke with Darren Earn.

Listen audio (runs 8:58)

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Road Trip!

St. Ann's Bay

Posted by Robert Doublett

It's our chance to take Mainstreet out of our studio and into one of our Cape Breton communities, and to find out what makes that particular community unique.

On the show today, we're on a road trip to St. Ann's Bay! We'll chat about the area's history, we remember when Lt. Governor MayAnn Francis toured St. Ann's Bay, and presented the area with her annual Community Spirit Award. We check out the Community Health Centre, and meet tons of people from musicians, to homesteaders and artisans.

Listen audio (runs 88:40)

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On Location - Coxheath Hills

Posted by Stan Kennedy

(Photo courtesy of Gala Milne.  In photo L to R: Wendy Bergfeldt, Kim & Ken Martell
and Kevin MacLellan).

The Coxheath Hills Wilderness Trail is a community trail system which has been developed by the community, for the community.  


The trail is an expression of the spirit of the community.  


It's been a vehicle for people to come together, share the love of environment, love of healthy living and love of community.

Listen audio (runs 75:33)

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Trapper Boy

Hugh R. MacDonald

Posted by Robert Doublett

The novel is called "Trapper Boy" and it's published Cape Breton University Press.

It's the second title in the catalog they're building up for younger readers.

The author, Hugh R. MacDonald joined us in studio to tell us about the book.

Listen audio (runs 10:54)

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Natalie MacMaster Remembers

Posted by Stan Kennedy

Natalie MacMaster was deeply influenced by Raylene and the Rankin Family. Natalie's career has taken her all over the world, but she isn't sure that would have happened without the Rankin Family making the way. Here's Wendy Bergfeldt in conversation with Natalie MacMaster.

Listen audio (runs 10:13)

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