Carola Vyhnak, writing in the Toronto Star »
The province says it’s cancelling the existing “inefficient” program because of the $2.8-million cost of administering $9 million in emergency medical coverage abroad each year. OHIP’s reimbursements also tended to offset only a fraction of the actual expenses.
Without private insurance, travellers can face “catastrophically large bills” for medical care, warns Ministry of Health spokesperson David Jensen, who “strongly encourages” people to purchase adequate coverage.
Read the whole article at the Toronto Star »
The Gallop organization, a research firm based in the USA, asked citizens of 142 countries about their confidence in local policing, feelings of safety while walking alone and personal experiences of crime.
Gallup interviewed more than 148,000 people for the 2018 report. Gallup’s rankings are based on residents’ own sense of security.
2. (tied) Finland, Iceland, and Norway
5. (tied) Hong Kong and Uzbekistan
7. (tied) Canada and Switzerland
10. (tied) Denmark, Slovenia, Luxembourg, Austria, China, Netherlands, Egypt
More at CNN
Sewell Chan, The New York Times:
Nearly all applicants for a visa to enter the United States — an estimated 14.7 million people a year — will be asked to submit their social media user names for the past five years, under proposed rules that the State Department issued on Friday.
Last September, the Trump administration announced that applicants for immigrant visas would be asked for social media data, a plan that would affect 710,000 people or so a year. The new proposal would vastly expand that order to cover some 14 million people each year who apply for nonimmigrant visas.
The proposal covers 20 social media platforms. Most of them are based in the United States: Facebook, Flickr, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn, Myspace, Pinterest, Reddit, Tumblr, Twitter, Vine and YouTube. But several are based overseas: the Chinese sites Douban, QQ, Sina Weibo, Tencent Weibo and Youku; the Russian social network VK; Twoo, which was created in Belgium; and Ask.fm, a question-and-answer platform based in Latvia.
Social media account to get a US visa? No thank you – Arwa Mahdawi, Gulf News
Eva Holland, writing for Outside Magazine:
Students in the Extreme Polar Training course, a two-week freeze-fest held near the Arctic Circle on Canada’s Baffin Island, learn how to live in Earth’s coldest conditions. Still, nothing really prepares you for 72 hours of a sled-pulling, pathfinding ordeal on a skinny pair of skis.
As I slogged through deep snow and deeper darkness toward my tent, tripping and scraping my shins on chunks of broken ice concealed by fresh powder, I reminded myself that I had come here intending to suffer.
As I settled in for sleep, I felt hope for the first time that there might be more to polar travel than fear and misery. But the night still seemed deadly: The tent thrashed around in a heavy wind, the huskies chained nearby howled, and the ice creaked and boomed as it shifted in the grip of the tide.
I tried to focus on the harsh beauty of the ice walls lining the frozen channel we were moving through. I was determined to bury my fears in sheer wonder and suffocate them.
Katie O’Reilly, writing for Sierra Magazine:
First things first: Make sure your base-layer game is strong.
“What most people don’t realize is that when it’s 30 to 40 degrees below zero, the concern isn’t about getting too cold, but rather getting too hot,” Larsen cautions. “When you sweat, moisture builds up and can replace the layer of air next to your skin.” Hence, the importance of a close-fitting base layer made from moisture-wicking fabric that allows for ventilation. Larsen prefers the wide range of base layers available through Norwegian technical outfitter Helly Hansen. “They make a variety, and I layer up and down depending on the temperature and the activity. For polar expeditions, they have a great line of mountain apparel.”
Get down with down.
Larsen describes a big down jacket as his “last defense against really cold weather—whether you’re in a sub-zero-degree tent or just walking around town.” He explains, “It’s the lightest-weight and warmest of insulators,” and says he relies on Helly Hansen’s shell jackets. “They use Allied Feather & Down, which is sustainably harvested.”