Pt 2: Flu Shots - Hospitals across the country are on high alert. A second wave of the swine flu could mean higher numbers of patients filling waiting room chairs and hospital corridors this Fall. And public health officials are grappling with how to protect both patients and health care workers from infection.
Pt 3: Dirty Secrets, Dirty War - It seems like the kind of story any journalist would jump at. Over the course of seven years, a government targets an estimated 30-thousand people - they are picked up at all times of the day, bundled into cars, interrogated, tortured, and then, they disappear.
It's Wednesday September 16th.
Actress Jane Fonda says she was rash to sign a letter protesting the Toronto Film Festival's decision to highlight films fromTel Aviv, saying she hadn't read it close enough.
Currently ... Fonda also apologized for protesting last weekend's commemoration on the Plains of Abraham, which she thought was an effort to rebrand the Israeli airforce.
This is the Current.
Harper in Washington
Ever since September 11th, 2001, the relationship between the United States and Canada has been both strengthened and strained. But one nagging irritant has been the issue of national security.
The phrase, "world's longest undefended border," is somewhat of an anachronism now. An American drone monitors the border for infiltrators from Canada. Passports are mandatory for entering America. And of course, there was the matter of Maher Arar.
So as President Barack Obama meets with Prime Minister Stephen Harper in Washington today, security issues are there. For more on how Canada and the U.S. relate to each other on security issues, we were joined by Michael Chertoff. From 2005 until 2009 he was the Secretary of Homeland Security. He is also the author of the new book Homeland Security: Assessing the First Five Years. We reached him in Washington DC.
We brought the issues raised by our discussion with Mr. Chertoff to the attention of Canada's Minister of Public Safety and requested an interview with Peter Van Loan. According to his office, he was unavailable for comment this morning.
Flu Shots - New York
Hospitals across the country are on high alert. A second wave of the swine flu could mean higher numbers of patients filling waiting room chairs and hospital corridors this Fall. And public health officials are grappling with how to protect both patients and health care workers from infection.
In the State of New York, the health department has taken a bold move. It has passed an emergency regulation that requires all health care workers to get vaccinated for influenza by November 30th. The regulation includes a new vaccine for swine flu. And just yesterday, the Food and Drug Administration announced the approval of an H1N1 vaccine.
To tell us more about this measure we were joined by Dr. Richard Daines. He is the Commissioner of Health for the state of New York, and he was in New York City.
Flu Shots - Canada
Regulations mandating that health workers get vaccinated are not a new idea in Canada. Ontario passed a law in 2000 requiring parademics to get flu shots. It didn't go over well with everyone, though.
Dozens of paramedics refused to get vaccinated and were suspended from work. Bill Kotsopoulos was one such paramedic in North Bay, Ontario.
The paramedics did launch a court challenge, arguing that the Ontario law violated the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. In 2002, the province backed off and struck down the legislation. However, some people believe now the time is right for Canada to consider mandatory flu vaccines for health care workers.
Flu Shots - Nurses
At the moment, there's no legislation in the works in Canada that would compel health care workers to get vaccinated against swine flu or seasonal flu. But a few health districts have quietly adopted at least partial mandatory vaccination programs. Kim Carter is the director of Infectious Disease Control at North Bay General Hospital. We heard from her.
But where there is talk of mandatory vaccinations for health care workers - there is resistance. Linda Haslam-Stroud is the President of the Ontario Nurses' Association, and she was in our Toronto studio.
Dirty Secrets, Dirty War
It seems like the kind of story any journalist would jump at. Over the course of seven years, a government targets an estimated 30-thousand people - they are picked up at all times of the day, bundled into cars, interrogated, tortured, and then, they disappear.
You might think that journalists living in the country might cover such an outrage. But in Argentina between 1976 and 1983 very few of them did. It was in 1976 that Argentina's Peron dynasty was deposed, and the military junta that came to power launched what became known as the Dirty War - a ruthless campaign to root out subversives, and terrorists, real or imagined.
Robert Cox was the editor of the Buenos Aires Herald and defied government threats and risked his life to report on what was happening to the citizens of his adopted country.
But nearly three decades after Robert Cox and his family went into exile and left Argentina, it is his son, journalist David Cox, who is telling his father's story. David Cox's book is called Dirty Secrets, Dirty War - the Exile of Editor Robert J. Cox. Robert Cox was in Charleston, South Carolina and David Cox was in Atlanta, Georgia.
Last Word - White Coat, Black Art Promo
Earlier on The Current, we discussed whether health care workers should be compelled to get vaccinated against the swine flu. Well, on White Coat, Black Art on CBC Radio One this Saturday at 10 am, they're taking a different tack. Doctor Brian Goldman asks whether the War on Swine Flu could turn out like the Cold War: one huge, terrifying, and expensive false alarm. We ended the program with a little preview.