Bert Rabinovitch: The Passing of a vCOP

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Bert Rabinovitch
The members of the Cote Saint-Luc Citizens on Patrol (vCOP) are deeply saddened that one of our volunteers, Bert Rabinovitch, passed away on Sunday, May 19, 2019.

Bert, who since 2017, served as a supervisor of the Membership & Training division, was dedicated to not only strengthening the training program, but to bettering the vCOP organization for all its members. Bert had also demonstrated his leadership and passion in managing the Smoke Detector Program, assisting in the training of its members as well as providing detailed reports on the program’s coverage and success. Bert’s efforts and contribution to vCOP will continue to live on in the new members he taught, as well as in the veterans he coached. An active member for almost 10 years, he will be dearly missed by his numerous patrol partners and friends. 

Like everyone else who volunteered with Bert, you could clearly see how very proud he was to wear the vCOP uniform and “give back” to the Cote Saint-Luc community.

In a posted statement, the vCOP supervisors and membership extended heartfelt condolences to Bert’s family and friends.

Mayor Mitchell Brownstein had the following to say about Bert: “Bert was a longtime volunteer with vCOP who took on a leadership role mustering his years of management consulting experience. His passing is a loss to the organization, and to his many vCOP friends who will miss him. I extend my deepest condolences to his family.”

I had known Bert for the last 10 years and spent many hours around the leadership table with him discussing ways to develop the organization and how best to use Bert’s vast skills in management and presentations. Together, we created the Smoke Detector Brigade which he attended to annually with gusto. He was a very dedicated member and leader. He will be missed.

The funeral takes place on Tuesday, May 21, 2019 at 10:00 AM at Paperman and Sons. vCOP members traditionally attend funerals of members and past members wearing their uniform to honour the departed for their dedication and contribution to the vCOP organization.  For more information, please click here.
L-R: vCOP Ron Yarin and Bert Rabinovitch (Photo: Glenn J. Nashen, 2015)
Bert Rabonovitch , front row, 3rd from right, as seen in this June 2017 photo with vCOP officers, and Mayor Mitchell Brownstein and Glenn J. Nashen, vCOP Founder and City Councillor for Public Safety (Photo: City of Cote Saint-Luc)
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School bus safety advocates sounding the alarm

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Advocacy across Canada calling for mandatory seat belts in school buses is picking up steam with support from some members of Parliament and the launching of a new petition to the House of Commons.

I wrote about this issue in this blog last December following a CBC Fifth Estate report exposing the serious risks to children because of the lax rules across the country.

A new petition, sponsored by Rachel Harder, MP of Lethbridge, Alberta, calls upon the Minister of Transport to make it mandatory by law to have 3-point lap and shoulder seatbelts installed in every Canadian school bus, and that it be legally required to wear these seatbelts while riding on a school bus of any size. At time of this writing, 654 signatures have been gathered. The petition will close on June 8, 2019.

I strongly encourage you to sign the signature and show your support. Discuss this important issue with other school parents, friends and neighbours. If you have any doubts watch the CBC report.

And hats off to Gary Lillico who started a petition several months ago on change.org that is nearly at 100,000 signatures. You can still add your name to this growing list.


The picture above cost a child’s life because Canadian school buses have no seatbelts.

“Thousands of Canadian children are being injured and in some cases killed because school buses aren’t equipped with seatbelts. If they were, these tragedies could be prevented,: Lillico said.

“I started this petition because I’m a school bus driver and I’m the only one to buckle up. Does that make sense? It’s a dollars over safety issue!”

A previously unreleased 2010 Transport Canada test crash study revealed that school buses failed safety tests and failed to prevent serious injuries in the event of side-impact or rollover crashes. The tests were done on the heals of an Alberta teenager who was killed after being ejected out of the bus and dying on impact with the ground. The results of the test and study were not released until CBC’s investigative report show The Fifth Estate made them public in October 2018, Lillico said. “The report concluded that more needs to be done to “reduce or eliminate the serious injuries” and Transport Canada’s chief of crashworthiness research said seatbelts are “a good first step”towards improving school bus safety.

Lillico adds, nine states in the USA are required by law to have three-point seatbelts for all riders. Why can’t we do the same in Canada? Liability laws for school boards, schools and drivers in the USA have been implemented and are working nicely! Canada has already borrowed seatbelt rules and regulations for seatbelt installation on school buses from the USA. With these already in place we only need to legislate usage to law! This hasn’t been done as our government doesn’t want to spend the money. They say here’s how you must do it, if you want too, However offering no funds, help or legislation. 

“It’s time for Canada to realize that seatbelts save lives and protect our children,” Lillico said. “You can potentially save a child’s life by just signing this petition! Please SIGN and SHARE today.” 

I cannot think of a greater priority than safeguarding our children, especially as they make their way to and from school.

Please sign these petitions:

Montreal Gazette: If you find yourself on the side of a highway, stay in your car

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highway safety

There is no safe place outside your vehicle, so put the flashers on and wait for help

Montreal Gazette

LORRAINE SOMMERFELD

If you are on the shoulder of the highway, stay in your car.

Another man has died on the side of one of Canada’s busiest highways, just a few weeks after a young woman suffered the same fate. In the first case, the driver’s vehicle had become disabled. In the second, the driver had been involved in a collision. Both left the safety of their vehicles and were struck and died as a result.

Every place in Canada and the U.S. has some form of a “pull over” law on the books: if you are approaching emergency vehicles with their lights on, you must slow down and give them a clear lane. Serious crashes continue to injure and kill first responders performing their incredibly dangerous jobs. So imagine how little protection you have in the same situation, without flashing emergency lights, reflective uniforms and multiple vehicles standing guard.

If you’re experiencing mechanical trouble or have been involved in a collision, put on your vehicle’s four-way flashers and safely make your way to the shoulder of the roadway. Take your car as far as you can to the right. If you need to switch drivers, use the restroom, make a phone call or find that Reese’s Peanut Butter cup that rolled under the seat, find the next exit. Don’t stop on the shoulder of a major highway unless you have absolutely no other choice.

Call for help — from either the police or CAA — and then wait. Don’t get out of your vehicle. There is no safe place to be on the outside of your car.

If for some reason you must leave your car, exit from the non-traffic side, and only if you have somewhere far from the roadway you can get to safely, and immediately.

The safest place for you is inside the vehicle, with its crumple zones, airbags and seatbelts — yes, leave those on.

Put the four-way flashers and your interior dome light on for more illumination. When help arrives, stay in your car until you’ve seen identification — you are vulnerable in more ways than one — and are given further direction.

On the flip side, if I see someone in need of assistance, it’s far safer for me to call for help for that stranded driver than to stop and offer it myself. Sad sign of the times? Maybe. But if I can get appropriate help directed to that person quickly, it’s the best option for everyone.

If you don’t have a cellphone, then carry a sign you can put in your window that says “please call for help.” Practice knowing where you are, so you can direct help to your location. Take note of exits and landmarks. If you’re in a more remote area, remember that it will be easier to find your car than to find you — so stay in your car. Walking down the side of a dark highway isn’t safe; I’d rather lock down my car and stay put until morning, if need be.

Lastly, reserve judgment on those who do the wrong thing or make an unfortunate decision. It’s one thing to declare what you would do in an emergency, but in the moment it is far different. If you’ve been in even a minor collision, you might very well be in shock. If you’re sitting in a car that suddenly seized up on you, you’re going to be upset. Polarizing emotions often lead to bad decisions.

Talk to those close to you about what to do should they find themselves in this situation. Practice it with your driving-age kids. As you pull out onto even a minor highway from a rest stop, register how fast those cars are whipping by, and realize on major routes they’ll be going even faster.

Let the pros come and rescue you. It’s a dangerous job they’re trained to do, and they have the tools to do it, and the visibility to reduce the risk.

Stay in your car.

Driving.ca

Montreal to debate allowing police to wear religious symbols

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Good proposal by Montreal Councillor Marvin Rotrand. Montreal should not be bullied down the road to Bill 21 without speaking up. The members of our police department should reflect the population it serves and while they have made some efforts in the last years there’s plenty more to do. We can learn from other major Canadian police forces. Good luck Marvin, in helping to develop an inclusive police service.

 

http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-news/montreal-to-debate-allowing-police-to-wear-religious-symbols

Police Commander calls for calm in the wake of Cavendish stabbing incident: Cllr. Mike Cohen

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Police Commander calls for calm in the wake of Cavendish stabbing incident

by: Cllr. Mike Cohen

Posted: 15 Feb 2019 06:09 PM PST

Since last week’s stabbing incident at the Quartier Cavendish Cineplex Odeon Theatre, I have received many calls from frightened constituents.  A couple were reportedly  watching a movie when the wife asked a man behind her to stop smoking cannabis. He allegedly lunged towards her with a knife. The husband stepped in front and was stabbed in the leg.

Five men were stopped by police in the parking lot, but released.

¨PoliceCommander

Commander Oliveira

“Our Sergeant on the scene interviewed them and they were not at all connected to the incident,” Commander Luis Oliveira told me. “There was no evidence to bring any of them in.”

The Commander said none of the men smelled from cannabis either. “We have all of the information on each one of them in the event we need to communicate with them,” he said.

According to the Commander this was an isolated incident and people do not need to panic. In the meantime officers from Police Station 9 have been doing foot patrols in the Quartier all  week and they will continue to do so. The socio community agents are meeting with the cinema management to establish proper procedures  for what to do when people light up, get into fights, etc.  As our City Manager Tanya Abramovitch righly told members of council today, “We at the city have the reflex to call  Public Security and/or the police, but they do not. Had such a procedure been in place, this likely would not have escalated in the way it did. The fact that what they were smoking was cannabis is not really relevant. They could have been smoking a cigarette and the same thing would have happened. ”

I, like many people, often go this theatre. It is absolutely necessary for one staff member to routinely go in and out of each room to see if anyone is acting inappropriately and to take the proper action. How many times have any of us turned around in a movie theatre and, for instance, asked someone to be quiet. As the Commander told me, the perpetrator “was clearly someone  high on dope,”

Côte Saint-Luc has the the second lowest crime rate on the island . The Commander said we can all can consider ourselves residing in a  a “safe” city.

CSL developing plan to ensure CO detectors in every local home | thesuburban.com

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Côte St. Luc’s staff directors will be presenting a plan to the city council “to ensure that every home in [the city] has carbon monoxide detectors,” Mayor Mitchell Brownstein told The Suburban.

We asked for Brownstein’s reaction to the deaths last Wednesday of a couple identified in the media as Roger and Simone Banon of Cavendish Blvd. According to media reports and interviews, it appears the couple, 88 and 84 years old respectively, forgot to shut off their car motor and it is suspected they died of carbon monoxide poisoning. We have heard that the couple’s bedroom was directly above the garage of their home.

“This is a terrible tragedy and the city shall be proactive to ensure something like this does not happen again,” the Mayor added.

No criminality is suspected in this tragedy.

Former CSL councillor Glenn Nashen, who used to have the public safety portfolio on council, wrote on his blog page that there should be a law requiring CO detectors in every local home, “regardless of the year it was built.

“These devices are cheap and readily available at hardware stores and pharmacies, easy to install— many simply plug in — and alert you once the device has expired in 7-10 years,” Nashen wrote. “They also save lives.”

The CSL website fire safety page strongly recommends CO detectors.

“Ideally, you should install one on the same level as the bedrooms, on the ceiling of the common corridor serving those bedrooms,” the page says. “An additional unit is strongly recommended in the area where the potential source of carbon monoxide is situated —furnace room or family room fireplace.”

The Quebec Coroner’s Office told us the investigation is still underway into last week’s tragedy, and that we will be advised when their report is ready.

Source: CSL developing plan to ensure CO detectors in every local home | City News | thesuburban.com

Why you must have a carbon monoxide detector in your house

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According to the Cote Saint-Luc fire safety webpage, Carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless, tasteless gas that is toxic in high concentrations or over extended periods of exposure. It is a by-product of incomplete combustion (burning). If you heat by wood, oil or gas, or cook by wood or gas, if your hot water is heated by gas, if you have an indoor gas operated grill, etc., then there is a risk of exposure and an investment in a carbon monoxide detector is highly recommended.

Ideally, you should install one on the same level as the bedrooms, on the ceiling of the common corridor serving those bedrooms. An additional unit is strongly recommended in the area where the potential source of carbon monoxide is situated (furnace room or family room fireplace, etc.).

Cote Saint-Luc has required smoke alarms in homes for decades. Our volunteer Citizen on Patrol Smoke Detector Brigade does hundreds of home visits every years to ensure the safety of residents.

vCOP Smoke Detector Brigade goes door to door inspecting mandatory smoke detectors and will go so far as to install a new one (Photo: Martin Chamberland, La Presse)

The time has come to adopt a municipal bylaw in Cote Saint-Luc requiring at least one CO detector in every house, regardless of the year it was built. These devices are cheap and readily available at hardware stores and pharmacies, easy to install (many simply plug in) and alert you once the device has expired in 7-10 years. They also save lives.

Today’s tragic incident in Cote Saint-Luc is a grim reminder of the consequences of carbon monoxide.

N

CO poisoning suspected in CSL

CSL seniors who died in their home were pleasant, quiet neighbours

 

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