Supreme Court hearing Thursday pits Ottawa against judges on sentencing law

Judges in several provinces are pushing back against the Conservative government’s tough-on-crime agenda and its built-in limits to judicial discretion. In a hearing at the Supreme Court of Canada on Thursday, the government will duke it out with judges over clashing interpretations of the Truth in Sentencing Act. . . . “This is one instance of a larger pattern of the current government seeking to take the traditionally discretion-rich role of judges in the crucial process of sentencing and to transform sentencing into a world of minimums, bright lines and other in-advance judgments about what just punishment looks like,” said Osgoode Hall Law School Professor Ben Berger in The Globe and Mail Jan. 22. Read full story.

Proceed with caution: China expert says the new Promised Land can be perilous for novices
James McGregor moved to Beijing in 1990 to work as a journalist for the Wall Street Journal and went on to lead Dow Jones’ in China before shifting gears to become a venture capitalist and eventually a business author. More than 20 years in the world’s most complex and enigmatic market has afforded McGregor a great deal of insight on the best way to do business in China – carefully. His contention in No Ancient Wisdom, No Followers: The Challenges of Chinese Authoritarian Capitalism is that China’s brand of commerce isn’t necessarily congruent with the laws and practices of western society, and that westerners must understand the cultural nuances of the Chinese economy and the intricacies of Chinese state-owned enterprises before diving head first into the new Promised Land. That was the message he delivered to a group of more than 200 students at York University’s Schulich School of Business on Jan. 22 as part of the school’s partnership with law firm Davies, Ward, Phillips & Vineberg, reported the Financial Post Jan. 22.  Read full story.

Sex, war and stability in the firm – a clash of cohorts
Generational friction is normal. This is rightfully so, in some cases, as numerable papers and surveys show a general decline over the decades in institutionally-beneficial traits like work ethic, collectivism and acquiescence to authority. Though intergenerational disdain may seem orthodox, if not attended to in a professional environment, gaps can fester and turn malignant. . . . Prior to writing their article “Male Age Composition and Severity of Conflicts” for the September ’99 issue of Politics and the Life Sciences, authors Christian Mesquida and Neil Weiner of York University made an interesting anecdotal observation – nations whose populations exhibited large groups of younger men were more vulnerable to violence, reported Forbes Jan. 22. Read full story.

Ryerson Students’ Union wants separate gym times for women
The Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) is running a campaign to introduce women-only gym times at the athletics facilities on Ryerson University’s campus, reported the Charlatan Jan. 22. . . . York University and the University of Toronto have already implemented women-only gym times. York offers women-only fitness five hours per week. Read full story.

York Region’s first female deputy fire chief takes up post in Vaughan
Deryn Rizzi is blazing a trail for women in York Region. The 38-year-old mother of two was named deputy fire chief in Vaughan last month, making her the first female in York region to achieve that rank, reported the Vaughan Citizen Jan. 22. . . . Along the way, Rizzi spent a lot of time educating herself and others. She holds a masters degree in disaster and emergency management and is currently working on a doctorate at York University. Rizzi continued putting her teaching skills to work at Durham College, Georgian College, George Brown College and York University as an instructor for courses in firefighting and emergency management. Read full story.