The end of June marks the end of a tumultuous month packed with protests, re-openings, re-closings, and volatile COVID-19 case numbers. Good news is easily forgotten in these times! From strides big and small in LGBTQ+, Indigenous, and Black communities to improved curriculum for Ontario’s youth, there’s a lot to talk about!
1. Black Lives Matter Protests were found not to cause an increase in COVID-19 cases
A new study by the National Bureau of Economic Research collected data from 300 of the largest U.S. cities and found that Black Live Matter Protests did not cause spikes in COVID-19 cases. The study suggests that social distancing measures increased in this time especially for those not participating in the protest who became extra cautious. This increased caution far outweighed the surge of cases that likely took place and led to a net balancing of the numbers. This does NOT suggest that masks and social distancing measures are ineffective.
2. Breonna Taylor’s murderer, Brett Hankinson was fired from the Louisville Metropolitan Police Department earlier this week, more than 3 months after the incident
Taylor was shot eight times and lost her life much too soon when officers stormed her apartment one night to perform a drug bust. Officers involved in the incident recklessly fired shots throughout her apartment and even endangered the lives of her neighbours as some bullets penetrated the shared wall. This is a small yet necessary step in the right direction. The FBI is investigating the incident, and the LMPD has implemented mandatory body-cam regulations.
3. June 26th, 2020 marks the 5-year anniversary of the Supreme Court Ruling legalizing same-sex marriage across the U.S.
Many have called for this day to become a national holiday as it represents a significant shift in the way Americans perceive the LGBTQ+ community. However, there is still so much work we can all do to be more inclusive, as gender and sexual prejudices still infiltrate many aspects of North American culture.
4. Liverpool F.C. fans swarmed North-West English streets at the end of this week to celebrate Liverpool’s win at the Premier League Championships.
The victory was secured in Chelsea’s 2-1 win against Manchester City on Thursday and left Liverpool with an additional 7 games to play in the league. This comes after a 30-year dry spell.
5. The Tuktoyaktuk community in North West Territories finally completed a marble statue representing their culture and heritage. It was put together by 4 stone carvers in just 3 months.
The community also had support from the local government and Parks Canada in completing this monument and is a small step for Canada in mending relationships and reconciling.
6. Ontario recently announced an overhaul of its elementary math program which will better facilitate learning and get children excited about doing math.
The program will include lessons in coding, financial math, and social emotional learning. Education professionals hope this innovative way of learning will give students greater confidence in studying and practising math. The change is much needed and comes after a decade of sagging EQAO scores. It will be rolled out this September and is expected to have an impact on the future work force as students will enter it with more diverse skills and greater confidence.
Alter, C. (2015, June 26). Why June 26 Should be a National Holiday to Honor Progress. Time. https://time.com/3937884/gay-marriage-supreme-court-june-26/
Asmelash, L. (2020, June 24). Black Lives Matter Protests Have not Led to a Spike in Coronavirus Cases, Research Says. CTV News. https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/black-lives-matter-protests-have-not-led-to-a-spike-in-coronavirus-cases-research-says-1.4997503
BBC Sport. (2020, June 26). Liverpool win Premier League: Jordan Henderson on Klopp, Fans & Future Titles. https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/53201295
Boisvert, N. (2020, June 23). Ontario Reveals new ‘Back to Basics’ Elementary Math Curriculum. CBC. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-math-curriculum-announcement-1.5623777
CBC. (2020, June 28). Some Good News from Around the World. https://www.cbc.ca/player/play/1756629059670
Crawley, M. (2020, June 27). How Ontario’s New Math Curriculum goes Way Beyond Back to Basics. CBC. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-elementary-math-curriculum-back-to-basics-1.5625289
Waldrop, T., Sanchez, R., Joseph, E. (2020, June 23). Officer Fires in Shooting Death of Breonna Taylor, Louisville Police Say. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/23/us/breonna-taylor-shooting-officer-fired/index.html