About 300 people in the north Waterhen area, including Skownan First Nation and Mallard area, will lose power today.

Manitoba Hydro will safely replace three wood poles that were damaged in a grass fire on Sunday. The outage will be from 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.

Each year uncontrolled grass fires and stubble burning causes irreparable and expensive damage to utility poles. When this happens, it disrupts electrical service and inconveniences homeowners and communities.

For controlled burns, Manitoba Hydro asks people to practice safe burning, including:

-  Check with your municipality for regulations before you start your fire. Make a fireguard around your field and around wood utility poles to minimize damage from out-of-control burns caused by wind and dry conditions.

- Monitor your fire. Don't burn too much at once, and watch for uncontrolled areas of fire.

- Watch the weather. Don't burn stubble or grass when it's exceedingly dry or windy.

- Call the fire department immediately if your fire appears to be getting out of control.

- If a pole is down, stay clear of the area. Treat downed power lines as live and a safety risk. Call 911 immediately and Manitoba Hydro at 1-888-624-9376.

D4xyc75XkAAdx4tD4xyc74XsAEq5nS

A company from Thailand has bought 50.1 per cent of HyLife.

HyLife announced today that it has signed a Share Purchase Agreement with Charoen Pokphand Foods Public Company Limited (CPF) for the sale.

CPF is the third largest pork producer in the world.

Claude Vielfaure, President of HyLife, says CPF was interested in moving and growing in North America and decided to use HyLife as their venue to do that.

He also says the agreement will ensure continued job creation across the province and promote increased demand for the pork they produce.

“The opportunity for our workers in Neepawa and across Manitoba is going to be great as far as being able to move up in the company, as the company is growing,” said  Vielfaure.

Grant Lazaruk, Chief Executive Officer of HyLife emphasized, “This is a win-win for HyLife, CPF and Manitoba’s agricultural industry.  Together, our globally established companies will significantly strengthen our market position.  Not only do we share similar values, but our strategies also correspond with one another.”

“So as far as the operations, our leadership group, our management group, our people are all going to be the same, and the same decision making will be made by the Canadian company, the Canadian leadership group. The only thing is we’re going to have to get it approved by a different shareholder,” said Vielfaure.

Vielfaure says it's business as usual for HyLife.  The company is stronger than ever, and they will continue to support the communities they are in.

In the press release, they say combining their forces will propel the growing demand for HyLife’s high-quality pork and enable the company to grow its current 2,500 employee workforce.

The Northwest Metis Council and five other volunteers were out cleaning up garbage around Dauphin.

Housing First Worker Terry Parenteau came up with the idea after he noticed all the garbage around town once the snow had melted.

Volunteers went out on Thursday afternoon and cleaned for about two hours where they collected 15 to 20 bags of garbage. They also found a few needles.

“I would like to thank community health for coming out and doing a little presentation for us on what to do if we find a needle. That helped us out,” said Parenteau. “It was good info about how to dispose of them and track down where we found them.”

They went around the train tracks, Vermillion Park, as well as back alleys and streets around central Dauphin.

He says he hopes to make this kind of clean up an annual thing, noting it could take place around Earth Day like it did this year.

A burn barrel is the cause of a grass fire that occurred this morning just west of Dauphin. 

Residual heat caused the dead grass around the barrel to start on fire around 10 am. 

The Dauphin Fire Department wants to warn people about the risks of using burn barrels in the current dry conditions.

Although you don't need a burning permit to use the barrels, the department asks that you put them on a solid gravel base and don't have it around any long dead grass.

Fire Chief Cam Abrey say if grass does catch on fire, it can spread rapidly and get out of control.

The Dauphin Fire Department responded and was at the scene, on Road 114 West this morning for less than an hour.

This was the third grass fire the department responded to this season. 

It's the last full week of April which means many farmers are getting ready to go into the fields and start seeding.

Based on Manitoba Agriculture information, soils are on the cooler end of where they would typically want to seed in the Parkland.

If the warm weather keeps up, Anastasia Kubinec with Manitoba Agriculture, says the soil will be warm enough for the early seeding crops like wheat and barley.

 “A soil moisture situation may be a bit different. There was some areas with some very heavy snowfall over the winter. So that could be the limiting factor where equipment actually can’t travel on the field yet. Just because it is too soft to bear the weight of that equipment.”

For farmers wanting to get out there, Kubinec says it's all a crop by crop and field by field decision.

“If producers are wanting to seed early the field is ready, the soil is warm enough the germination is probably going to occur then the risk is probably lower and if they feel that it’s ready it’s ready.”

There are some farmers she's talked to in the Parkland that are ready to go.

“There are some areas where actually they could go. The soil is dry or they didn’t get the same amount of snow as some other parts of the Parkland did. They feel that they are pretty close to getting going, which did surprise me.”

When it gets into sensitive crops, Kubinec says seeding the last week of April does carry a certain amount of risk. Some of the pros to seeding early you can get your crop in early and when it's flowering it won't be too hot or dry.

One negative she notes is there are greater risks of frost.  Impacts of freezing temperatures will depend on the temperature, the length of time sub-zero temperatures occur, the soil moisture levels, the plant residue levels, and the plant's growth stage. Manitoba Agriculture also says different crops also have varying tolerance levels to freezing temperatures, that usually dependent on crop stage.

Kubinec says Manitoba Agriculture's web site offers a lot of information farmers can use to help make their seeding decisions.

The provincial government announced funding for women’s resource centres, but according to a Dauphin shelter director, it will not help in the Parkland.

Kari Prawdzik, the Executive Director of the Parkland Crisis Centre, says there is a difference between women’s resource centres and crisis centres.  The big difference is shelters are short term residential facilities and open 24/7. Another difference is the shelters have a crisis line that can be reached at all times. The number to call in an emergency is 1-877-977-0007. 

Prawdzik says Manitoba family violence shelters have not had a core funding increase in 11 years.  To make matters worse, she says they are seeing an increase in the number of people who use the service. During 2017-2018 MAWS shelters provided 46,350 bed nights to women, men and children who were victims of family violence and assisted with 11,349 crisis line calls.

Shelters are being inundated with people not only experiencing interpersonal or family violence but who are also suffering from severe mental health or addiction issues.

“We personally answer all the crisis lines and often we receive calls that are outside the scope of our work. Because we don’t have the resources, we have such limited access in our areas,” said Prawdzik.

She notes the shelters are equipped to provide support for fleeing victims as well as facilitating the crisis management that is required to navigate the justice system, find housing, and provide counselling.

The lack of funding has greatly impacted shelters, especially the Parkland Crisis Centre. The centre not only helps individuals and families in Dauphin but all across the Parkland. Prawdzik says it’s tough when you don’t have the funds to support the service and the people.

“Although our funding doesn’t increase we still have to keep our skills and abilities up in order to assist clients with their ever-changing needs,” Prawdzik said. “We have less ability now, we’ve had to make cutbacks, we have limited ability to go out in the Parkland area and provide public education and outreach.”

Because they are supposed to be a safe, confidential location, they don’t have the storefronts like other agencies do. Prawdzik often says times women are not aware of the available resources.

Having services in rural areas is vital.  Prawdzik notes that often women don’t want to leave their homes. If the Parkland crisis centre was not open, they probably would not be willing to travel to larger urban areas for help.

On Thursday, students from all over the Parkland will head to Dauphin for the Robb Nash concert.

1725 high school students will pack Credit Union Place for the show.

Nash says the story all started when he was 17 years old and in a car accident, found dead on arrival without a pulse in the hospital.

The turning point in Nash’s life was when someone asked him if he believes everything happens for a reason and Nash replied with "that’s what everyone tells me".

The man proceeded to tell him that he knew the reason Nash got in the car accident: “It’s because you and your friends were going too fast on an icy road.”

That set Nash free and he realized we’re not puppets and we can make our own decisions.

Robb Nash started to play music and earned a record deal after his fourth album.

Nash says he was offered a tour to go through youth prisons, detention centers, reserves, and schools to share his message, so he ripped up the record deal to do it.

“It was supposed to be a 9-month tour and now it’s been 10 years since we’ve been on this tour and it’s grown into something massive. Originally it was me going to schools with my guitar and now we’re coming to Dauphin and they’ll be bringing in 25 schools to Credit Union Place.”

Nash has helped students all over the country. Quite often students will give him their suicide notes or send him videos destroying the note because of his impact on them.

He says the whole show is about how we all will see tragedy but what are you going to do when it happens.

So far this year, the Dauphin Fire Department has been doing quite a lot of training. Fire chief Cam Abrey says they’ve been hosting firefighters from other areas for training exercises.

Several weekends in March, they ran a response to hazardous materials operations program. They ran two 40 hour programs which included a total of 12 Dauphin firefighters and 11 combined from Inglis, Laurier, Roblin, Sifton, Ste Rose, Grandview, and Swan River.

Dauphin firefighters, along with some firefighters from Gilbert Plains, Grandview, Laurier, Sifton, and Ste Rose are working on their level 1 and 2 programs to make their way to practical and written exams.

Every single Wednesday, Dauphin firefighters have basic training.

They typically take off July and August from training because of all the events they help out at as well as to give the members some time with their families.

Specialized training gets started back up again in September.

They are also taking a look at critical incident stress management and how they can teach firefighters resilience training when dealing with the bad calls.

Today is April 20th, commonly refered to as 4:20 by the Cannabis Culture.  Even though it’s been half a year since marijuana became legal in Canada, edibles are still not available in stores, though it's been predicted they could be by October 17th.

Trevor Shewfelt, a co-host of the Reefer MEDness Podcast says a lot of people just prefer them over smoking.

“The medicinal people we’ve talked to, that’s the preferred method of taking it in. They don’t like smoking. They just prefer an edible so it’s great for them.”

Shewfelt says there are a lot of positives to edibles like no smell or smoke. Dosing is one downside. If a package is labelled poorly or people aren’t paying attention, it’s easier for people to take too much, though statistics have proven it’s tough to overdose on cannabis. Cannabis overdose is not like an opioid overdose, where death is possible.

Shewfelt says that if you have trusted your dealer for a long time and they charge you a much lower price than a legal store, you might stick with what you know.

which stops many from purchasing legally.

In one of the podcasts, S2E3, they spoke with Dr. Jason Childs, an economist who said that one of the biggest problems he sees is that the black market continues to exist because the legal channels can't compete on price.

“For people to go to a new product that they are not familiar with, where some trust has been established already with the illegal market, one of the worst things you want to do as a marketer is go in at a higher price unless you have a dramatically better product.”

Shewfelt said they interviewed a patient on the Reefer MEDness podcast who is spending thousands of dollars on medical cannabis. One reason the cost is so much is because of all the taxes imposed on the medication.

But there are other things people complain about when they go buy their legal weed, like the packaging.

Shewfelt says environmentally the packaging is not the friendliest thing. 

“So the government intentionally said everything should be in a childproof container. So, as a pharmacist this makes sense. But picture a bottle that you would get vitamins in and that’s what the cannabis has to be sold in. So there is a whole lot of bottle for a tiny bit of product.”

Shewfelt hopes down the road we’ll see a more childproof and less packaging intense solution, but we’re not there yet.

Pharmacists are still not allowed to sell medical cannabis in the pharmacy, which Shewfelt does not understand.  He calls it a strange system where you get a prescription from a doctor, it gets sent to a licensed producer, and then they send it directly to you.

“It would make so much more sense for it to go through a pharmacy. Because a lot of these people are, frankly, sick and on a bunch of other medications and it would be a good idea for a health care professional to be involved in the making sure what you’re taking cannabis wise mixes with the other medications.”

Shewfelt says he hasn't got anything against licenced producers, but says they don’t know all the other medications people take.

You can learn everything you need to know about how legalization affects the Canadian Cannabis culture by checking out the Reefer MEDness Podcast hosted by Shewfelt and Kirk Nyquist  here.

Parks Canada is setting areas of Riding Mountain National Park on fire to prevent wildfires from breaking out.

Prescribed fires reduce fuel to lessen the severity of out of control fires, release nutrients, and help keep the ecosystems in the park thriving.

The program will see fires set east of Wasagaming, around Arrowhead Trail, and along Whirlpool River.

RMNP will stay open to visitors, but some smoke will be present and visible. Staff will monitor the wind and try to ensure the smoke won’t affect publicly used areas. Some areas will be closed for a short amount of time to ensure visitors safety.

The program will run when conditions allow until May 10th.

For up-to-date information about area or facility closures and other updates on the prescribed burn, please check the park’s website at parkscanada.gc.ca/riding and Facebook page at facebook.com/RidingNP.

A three-session program to help people deal with problematic eating behaviours will be in Dauphin.

Holly Reimer says the three dates for the craving change program are May 2nd, 9th, and 16th from 6:30-8:30 at the Dauphin Community Health Services.

Since the program is in Dauphin, PMH understands some people from farther away communities won’t be able to travel for the sessions. So through telehealth, people can participate in Ste. Rose as well.

Reimer says the first session of the Craving Change Program includes a lot of reflective activities.

“Regarding triggers for problematic eating and there’s some homework to go along with that. We teach a few different ways to think about hunger and what’s triggering problematic eating behaviours.”

In the second session, they will be talking about 10 different strategies to choose from to avoid problematic eating behaviours.

The group dynamic of the sessions will help people learn from each other.

Participants will learn how to understand why they eat the way they do, and some strategies to help deal with problematic eating behaviours. Some things people could have a problem with are what they’re eating, the amount they eat, or emotional eating when they aren’t hungry.

To register for the free program, call the toll free line, 1-877-509-7852.