Category Archives: Columns

Farmers Miss Opportunity to Voice Feedback on Upcoming Provincial Changes

Farmers Miss Opportunity to Voice Feedback on Upcoming Provincial Changes

By Kate Jackman-Atkinson, Editor, myWestman.ca

Farmer Grain

NEEPAWA, Man. — The 2016 Canadian Census of Agriculture recorded 20,140 farm operators and 14,791 census farms in Manitoba. Only 37 of them provided input into the upcoming changes the province’s Agricultural Crown Lands (ACL) program, which took place earlier this year.

Manitoba Agriculture released the report, compiling stakeholders’ feedback, earlier this month.

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Study Finds Many Canadians Living with Life Regrets

Study Finds Many Canadians Living with Life Regrets

By Kate Jackman-Atkinson, Neepawa Banner & Press

Achievement - Confident - Free

Regrets — it’s almost impossible to make it through life without a couple. But what do people regret most as they look back on their lives? A recent study by a Cornell Psychology professor, Tom Gilovich, and former Cornell grad student, Shai Davidai, shine a light on some of the things we regret the most and what we can do about it. It turns out that what we most regret is not living up to our ideal selves.

The research paper, called “The Ideal Road Not Taken,” builds upon two areas of study. The first is that people tend to regret the things they haven’t done more than the things they have. The second is that our sense of self is made up of three elements: the actual (the attributes a person believes they possess), ideal (the attributes they would ideally like to possess) and the ought (the person they feel they should be based on duties, obligations and responsibilities).

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Attracting the Future: Neepawa the Latest Manitoba Municipality to Rebrand

Attracting the Future: Neepawa the Latest Manitoba Municipality to Rebrand

By Kate Jackman-Atkinson, Editor, myWestman.ca

Neepawa Logo

After close to six months of work, last week, the Neepawa Tourism committee launched the community’s new brand. I’m excited to see this greater focus on tourism and I’m not alone, judging from the strong turnout at the unveiling.

Neepawa is part of a larger trend, as many communities, like Clear Lake, have recently completed a branding process and others, like Minnedosa, are looking into it.

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Sports Highlights

Food Musings: Mon Ami Louis

Food Musings: Mon Ami Louis

By Kathryne Grisim (@foodmuser)

Mon Ami Louis
(KATHRYNE GRISIM PHOTO)

There are certain signs of summer when you live in Winnipeg-the fruit trees in full bloom, the quickly flowing Red River, bikes and pedestrians everywhere and in the case of this year, the end of the hockey season. In addition, now that Mon Ami Louis opens only for the fair weather months, the opening of its doors on the Provencher Bridge.

Three good friends were assembled that day-one of the first sunny and balmy days of the season. The air conditioning actually provided some relief as we entered. I was warm from making the trek from my parked car and across the bridge when one of the trios pointed out that there is some designated parking for Mon Ami Louis guests on the east side of the river. I will research that option next time.

Read the full review of Mon Ami Louis at FoodMusings.ca.

It’s About Time: Canadians Not Taking Advantage of Full Paid Vacation

It’s About Time: Canadians Not Taking Advantage of Full Paid Vacation

By Kate Jackman-Atkinson, Neepawa Banner & Press

Vacation Drink

NEEPAWA, Man. — Many times, I look to the south and feel glad to live in Canada. This time of year, we have another reason to be glad we live and work in Canada — vacation.

As a Canadian worker, the concept of paid vacation time is something we take for granted. Not so to the south, the United States has the distinction of being the only industrialized country without a legislated requirement for paid time off, for either vacations or public holidays. This, and a recent taste of summer weather, got me thinking about vacations.

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Manitoba Municipalities Feeling the Pinch as Workers Go Urban

Manitoba Municipalities Feeling the Pinch as Workers Go Urban

By Kate Jackman-Atkinson, Neepawa Banner & Press

Office

NEEPAWA, Man. — Depopulation is a serious issue facing many rural communities. Over the last hundred years, Canadians have become increasingly urban and this shift has created challenges in many smaller towns and cities. They’ve seen their youth leave for education or career opportunities and not come back.

As local economies have rebounded following the great recession, many communities find themselves in a tough spot — they have jobs, but not workers and if companies can’t find the needed workers, they’re likely to move where they can. A look at the help wanted pages show that there are lots of jobs available locally, but there aren’t always workers available to fill them.

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Grading Manitoba’s Children: Tests Show Room for Improvement

Grading Manitoba’s Children: Tests Show Room for Improvement

By Kate Jackman–Atkinson, Neepawa Banner & Press

School Classroom

NEEPAWA, Man. — Turns out, improving the skills of Manitoba students isn’t as easy as A-B-C. This week, the results of the 2016 Pan-Canadian Assessment (PCAP) of reading, science and math were released, and students and educators in this province got some good news and some bad. While Manitoba students’ skills have improved, they still lag behind those in other provinces.

The PCAP is a national standardized test administered by the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada. The test is given every three years to a random sample of 30,000 Grade 8 students across the country. Because curriculum varies from province to province, the test focuses on the core areas of reading, science and math. It’s designed to determine if students in different provinces achieve the same level of proficiency at the same time. In addition to the test results, the assessment also includes a questionnaire to collect “contextual information.” This includes questions about demographics, socioeconomic factors and teaching and learning conditions, which can help interpret results. The first test was conducted in the spring of 2007. The testing program is designed to help provincial education ministries monitor and assess their educational systems.

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A Tale of Two Newspapers: Jackman-Atkinson

A Tale of Two Newspapers: Jackman-Atkinson

By Kate Jackman-Atkinson, Neepawa Banner & Press

Newspaper

NEEPAWA, Man. — The newspaper industry has a problem, but it’s not what most people think. More than anything else, the newspaper industry in North America has an ownership problem. Long known by those in the industry, the public watched this story explode a little over a week ago. The spark? A series of editorials in the Denver Post blasting their owners, a hedge-fund called Alden Global Capital.

What most readers forget, or don’t know, is that many of the papers they read are owned by hedge funds or investment companies. It could be outright, like the Denver Post, or by extension, like Postmedia, which has borrowed so much to fuel its expansion, it is effectively beholden to its lenders. This ownership structure favours profitability at any cost — they are investors looking to make money through newspaper ownership, not newspaper owners looking to make money.

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Fact or Fiction in the World of Online News: Jackman-Atkinson

Fact or Fiction in the World of Online News: Jackman-Atkinson

By Kate Jackman-Atkinson, Neepawa Banner & Press

Laptop News

NEEPAWA, Man. — In the past few months, I’ve had a couple of people send me news articles they’ve found online and ask me if I thought they were true. In each case, some investigation revealed that they were in fact completely fabricated. The whole phenomenon of “fake news” is recent and while slants and biases have probably existed since the first newspapers, today we find ourselves in uncharted waters. On the internet today, you don’t have to look hard to find “news” that is completely made up, but packaged to make readers believe that it is real.

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Hidden in the Gazette: Manitoba Moves to Change How Public is Notified

Hidden in the Gazette: Manitoba Moves to Change How Public is Notified

By Kate Jackman-Atkinson, Neepawa Banner & Press

Manitoba Legislative Building
Manitoba Legislative Building (SHUTTERSTOCK)

NEEPAWA, Man. — We’ve all heard about the mushroom treatment, “Keep them in the dark and feed them [manure].” I wonder if this is the philosophy our current provincial government is following? If they get their way, Manitobans will have to work a lot harder to be well-informed about the issues that impact their lives and communities. Two bills currently before the legislature, Bill 8, the Government Notices Modernization Act, and Bill 19, the Planning Amendment Act, will make significant changes to the process by which governments must notify the public about changes at local and provincial levels.

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