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_________ Monday February 23, 2015 _________

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Everyday Racism

The little problem I had renting a house

Fifty-three years ago, James A. White Sr. joined the US Air Force. But as an African American man, he had to go to shocking lengths to find a place for his young family to live nearby. He tells this powerful story about the lived experience of "everyday racism" — and how it echoes today in the way he's had to teach his grandchildren to interact with police.

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Growth

Economic outlook positions Ontario as one of the growth leaders

Mixed performances across the country as the swift correction in oil prices changes economic outlook

OTTAWA - The sudden collapse in oil prices has significantly altered the economic landscape in Canada and around the world. While some provinces will be negatively impacted, Ontario joins Manitoba and British Columbia as economic growth leaders this year, according to The Conference Board of Canada's Provincial Outlook: Winter 2015.

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xQuarterly

Economical Insurance reports financial results for Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2014

Waterloo — Economical Insurance announced consolidated financial results for the three months and full year ended December 31, 2014. “Despite a reduction in weather-related catastrophe losses from the record levels set last year, 2014 continued to be a challenging year for Economical which began with a particularly tough first quarter“ said Karen Gavan, president and CEO. “While we continued to perform well in three of our four lines of business in 2014, the corrective underwriting and rate actions we have taken on our commercial property and liability business should begin to be felt in 2015.

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Investing

Impact investing the dawn of a new era

Impact investors seek out companies that both make a profit and provide a social good - By Mark Anielski

EDMONTON - A new era is dawning in the investment world. It is being termed 'impact investing' and, according to a column in the New York Times, "Impact investors seek out companies that are intentionally designed both to make a profit and provide a measurable and accountable social good. Impact funds are frequently willing to accept lower financial returns for the sake of doing good - say a 7 per cent annual return compared with an 11 per cent return."

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Development

New Support for People with Developmental Disabilities

Waterloo Region Project Supported by Developmental Services Employment and Modernization Fund

Kitchener - Extend-A-Family of Waterloo Region is receiving funding from Ontario to promote inclusive employment and improve services and supports for people with developmental disabilities. “Our community benefits from the many talents and contributions people with developmental disabilities make every day in the workplace. We are thrilled to be partnering with the Working Centre in this project and so very thankful to the Provincial government for this employment funding," said Maria de Boer, Executive Director, Extend-A-Family Waterloo Region.

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Anti-Bullying Day

Anti-Bullying (Pink Shirt) Day

BRANTFORD – Bullying is a major problem in our schools, workplaces, homes, and over the Internet. This February 25 marks Pink Shirt Day, where everyone is encouraged to wear something pink to show that we are all working together to prevent bullying in our schools, in our communities and online. Dr. Danielle M. Law, assistant professor, Youth and Children’s Studies and Psychology; Child and Adolescent Research and Education (CARE) Lab is an expert in bulllying.

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Think Tank

Carleton University Assists in Revival of North-South Institute

The Norman Paterson School of International Affairs to provide support for Canada’s best-known development think-tank

Ottawa - Carleton University announced that it is supporting the renewal of the North-South Institute (NSI), a premier development research centre recently rated the best small think-tank in the world.

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Mobile Currency

UGO Wallet expands capabilities to include more loyalty cards

Next generation app allows users to add multiple loyalty cards, available on more smartphones

TORONTO - UGO Mobile Solutions L.P. announced a significant update to its mobile app, UGO Wallet. Building on its payment and loyalty platform - launched just three months ago - this new version allows users to quickly and easily store multiple loyalty cards by simply using their smartphone's camera to scan the barcode of their loyalty cards. This is another step in providing Canadians the ability to digitize and slim down their wallets.

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Energy

Natural gas sales for December 2014

Ottawa - Natural gas sales totalled 9 756 million cubic metres in December, down 4.5% from December 2013. The volumes of sales to the residential (-11.4%) and commercial (-8.7%) sectors were down while the industrial sector (+0.5%) was up compared with the same month a year earlier.

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Social Media

TD the first major bank in Canada to offer SMS customer service

Toronto - On Friday the TD Bank Group announced the launch of customer service through SMS in Canada via "TDHELP." Mobile, easy and fast, texting takes customer comfort and convenience to the next level, and TD is the first major bank in Canada to offer it.

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Carbon Monitoring

Wilmot Township Joins Regional Carbon Initiative

Pledging to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the Township of Wilmot solidified commitment to improving overall environmental sustainability.

BADEN - The Township of Wilmot is excited to work with Sustainable Waterloo Region as the newest partner of the Regional Carbon Initiative (RCI). As an Observing Organization in the Regional Carbon Initiative, Wilmot has taken the first step to understanding its environmental impact by measuring and understanding its greenhouse gas emissions. Wilmot’s goal is to work towards a point in the future where they can make a reduction commitment in emissions to become a Pledging Partner of the Regional Carbon Initiative.

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Housing

Investment in new housing construction for December 2014

Investment in new housing construction totalled $3.7 billion in December, up 5.1% from the same month a year earlier.

Ottawa - The largest year-over-year advance occurred in Alberta, followed by British Columbia and Ontario. In Alberta, total investment in new residential building construction was up 16.7% to $865 million. British Columbia saw an 11.3% increase in spending to $633 million. In Ontario, investment rose 4.0% to $1.2 billion. Conversely, Manitoba posted the largest decline (-18.8% to $96 million).

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RRSP

More than half of Canadians won't be contributing to an RRSP this year

Of those still planning to contribute, many do not have the money set aside

Toronto - With just one week to go until the March 2nd deadline, a new poll finds that more than half (54 per cent) of Canadians will not be making a contribution to their RRSPs for the 2014 tax year. Less than one-third (32 per cent) of Canadians expect to add to their retirement funds and of those who may still make a contribution, less than half (42 per cent) have the money to do so.

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Market

Retail trade for December 2014

Ottawa - Retail sales fell 2.0% to $42.1 billion in December. This was the largest decline since April 2010. After removing the effects of price changes, particularly lower gas prices, sales in volume terms declined 1.3%. Lower sales were reported in 9 of 11 subsectors, representing 71% of retail trade.

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Our Business

Family Enterprise of the Year Award to be announced and presented at 11th Annual National Family Business Day gala on February 24, 2015

LONDON - The Family Enterprise of the Year Award will be presented by the Canadian Association of Family Enterprise (CAFE) in partnership with the Business Families Centre at the Ivey Business School, at the 11th annual National Family Business Day celebration being held at The Hilton in London on Tuesday, February 24, 2015.

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Oil Transport

Pipeline transportation of crude oil and refined petroleum products for December 2014

Ottawa - Canadian pipelines net receipts of crude oil and condensates, and other liquefied petroleum products totalled 36.1 million cubic metres in December, up 9.4% from the same month in 2013.

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Research Forum

Laurier hosts annual Social Work research forum

WATERLOO – Wilfrid Laurier University’s Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work will host its eighth-annual research forum on Feb. 23 from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Topics to be explored include post-schooling employment, resilience in conflict zones and working successfully with communities. The forum is free and open to the public.

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