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EDITORIAL: Cheers & Jeers for Jan. 20, 2021

Cheers & Jeers
Cheers & Jeers - SaltWire Network

CHEERS: To Kayla Ellis who is working to turn a personal tragedy into something meaningful to help support others. Last year, Ellis lost a pregnancy; a personal hardship that many people cannot truly understand. Determined and courageous, Ellis is now working to end the stigma that so often surrounds those who have experienced the devastation of losing a pregnancy. 
In December, Ellis found the strength to publically face the dark months she'd endured. She began to share the experience on social media, but she didn't just do it for herself. She posted to her Facebook and Instagram pages for everyone who had been where she was. For those who felt they had to stay silent. In honour of the baby lost and to thank those who helped her through a difficult time, Ellis used her business, Birch Studio, to raise funds for the IWK. She put a few items up for auction on Dec. 23, expecting to raise a few hundred dollars; she would have been happy with $50. When bidding closed two and a half hours later, Ellis raised $1,315. By the time she wrote the cheque on Jan. 5, she raised almost $4,000 for the IWK’s Fetal Assessment and Treatment Center.


JEERS: To delays in delivery of high-speed internet to many Island communities. About 7,500 homes in P.E.I. saw their internet improve to broadband speeds in 2020. It came on the heels of an agreement between the province, Ottawa, and Bell Canada. But it could take almost three more years for most rural households in P.E.I. to reach broadband internet speeds – defined as 50 megabits per second download and 10 megabits per second upload. There are lots of excuses about why that amount of time is necessary, but it's just too long. Rural high-speed internet needs to happen faster, especially given the investment of public money into making that happen.


CHEERS: To the brother-and-sister curling team of Alex and Lauren MacFadyen who defeated the husband-and-wife team of Ed and Jenny White to advance to the 2021 Home Hardware Canadian mixed doubles curling championship in Calgary, Alta. The event will take place from March 18 to 25. Both teams play out of Summerside's Silver Fox club. We wish the MacFadyen's well in Calgary and congratulate the White's for their strong finish as well.


JEERS: To Dutch elm disease. True, there's not a lot we can do about it but it is still sad to see the effect the disease has had on the canopy of so many cities and towns. Recent evidence of this locally is three more of Summerside’s last remaining giant elm trees are gone; removed for safety reasons on Jan. 8. The trees all suffered from Dutch elm disease and did not produce leaves in 2020. Summerside only has five to 10 per cent of its pre-2000 street-side elm trees remaining. 

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