In-The-News is a roundup of stories from The Canadian Press designed to kickstart your day. Here is what's on the radar of our editors for the morning of Oct. 21.
What we are watching in Canada ...
Now it's time for what politicians always say is the only poll that really matters.
Canadians will cast their ballots today in the country's 43rd general election after what federal leaders themselves have called a nasty and divisive campaign.
Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and the Conservative's Andrew Scheer have spent weeks arguing the decision is between which of the two historical governing parties will be in office.
But NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh has drawn support from progressive voters and the Bloc Quebecois has surged in Quebec, which could scuttle hopes of a majority government and put either party into the position of power-broker in a hung Parliament.
Elizabeth May is hoping her Green party can capitalize on its recent success in provincial votes, while Maxime Bernier will find out whether his upstart People's Party of Canada is a movement or a footnote.
Also this ...
NEW YORK — A United Nations report is highlighting the role "abhorrent" housing conditions play in the poverty and exploitation that Indigenous people face in Canada and around the world.
The report, presented to the UN General Assembly on Friday, examines the lack of access to secure housing both in cities and on reserves and its effect on the rights of Indigenous people in countries including Canada, Australia and Tanzania.
Leilani Farha, the UN special rapporteur on adequate housing, noted that housing shortages are severe enough in Canada's North that some people in Indigenous communities are forced to sleep in shifts.
"There's 15 people living in a home that's the size of a trailer, so of course they have to sleep in shifts when there's only so much room," she said.
The report also highlights poor water systems on many Canadian reserves.
It adds that Indigenous people in Canada and around the world who live in urban areas also deal with racism from landlords, presenting another hurdle to accessing housing.
What you may have missed ...
TORONTO — Episiotomies during childbirth have declined in Canada, but a new report says the surgical cuts could reduce the chance of a mother being severely injured when forceps or a vacuum are involved.
A large study published today in the Canadian Medical Association Journal found episiotomies reduced the risk of injury by as much as 42 per cent when first-time mothers required assistance from a vacuum or forceps, which are broad pincers used to grab a baby's head.
In contrast, a surgical cut posed greater risk of injury when forceps or a vacuum were not involved.
Study author Giulia Muraca, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of British Columbia, says guidelines that discourage routine episiotomies have been overgeneralized to apply to all vaginal deliveries, when data suggests they could help in assisted births.
"Generalizing the episiotomy guidelines for spontaneous vaginal delivery to women with operative vaginal delivery can cause harm, particularly in women delivering their first child and in women having a vaginal birth after caesarean," Muraca said in a release.
An episiotomy is a surgical cut made to the opening of the vagina when the baby's head appears.
It's meant to create more room and minimize severe tears, which could include obstetric anal sphincter injury and cause pain, infection, sexual problems and incontinence.
What we are watching in the U.S. ...
WASHINGTON — Mick Mulvaney is struggling with the job of defending his boss, the U-S president.
Donald Trump's acting chief of staff went on "Fox News Sunday" to speak up for Trump — and ended up raising more eyebrows.
Explaining why Trump tried to steer an international summit to one of the president's own properties, Mulvaney said Trump "still considers himself to be in the hospitality business."
That did nothing to allay concerns the president was using his office to enrich his business interests.
Days earlier, Mulvaney acknowledged the Trump administration had delayed aid to Ukraine, in part to prod that country to investigate the 2016 elections, but then he tried to walk back that comment.
Trump now has dropped his plan to host the summit at his Doral, Florida, resort.
What we are watching in the rest of the world ...
KABUL, Afghanistan — While U-S President Donald Trump insists he's bringing home Americans from "endless wars" in the Mideast, his Pentagon chief says all U.S. troops leaving Syria will go to western Iraq and the American military will continue operations against the Islamic State group.
They aren't coming home and the United States isn't leaving the turbulent Middle East, according to current plans outlined by U.S. Defence Secretary Mark Esper before he arrived in Afghanistan on Sunday.
The fight in Syria against IS, once spearheaded by American allied Syrian Kurds who have been cast aside by Trump, will be undertaken by U.S. forces, possibly from neighbouring Iraq.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Oct. 21, 2019.