Canada Court Rules US ‘Not Safe’ for Asylum Seekers ; No Mask, Pay a Fine ; and More Picks 7/24

Canada Court Rules US ‘Not Safe’ for Asylum Seekers (Mili)

The author writes, “Canada’s federal court has ruled that an asylum agreement the country has with the US is invalid because America violates the human rights of refugees.”

NH Towns Pay Millions to Settle Claims Against Police; Details Often Hidden From Public (Dana)

From NHPR: “Farmington’s payout is one of 87 legal settlements agreed to by municipalities in New Hampshire following allegations of civil rights violations by police officers between 2010 and this year. The settlements cover a range of allegations, from the shooting deaths of citizens by police, to the use of excessive force during a chaotic arrest in Nashua, to police officers in small towns improperly detaining citizens. In total, these settlements ultimately cost taxpayers a total of more than $4.35 million.”

No Mask, Pay a Fine? (Reader Steve)

From the Mercury News: “As California’s coronavirus cases and deaths continue to rise, some Bay Area officials are threatening to crack down on those who refuse to wear masks and practice social distancing — hoping to stop the virus before it overwhelms our health systems. Napa and Marin counties were the first to approve fines of up to $500 for people who refuse to comply with state and local health orders, but officials in some other jurisdictions now say they’d like to see that extended throughout the region. That would be a significant shift — so far, officials have relied mostly on voluntary compliance, with very little enforcement.”

Take Coronavirus More Seriously, Say Olympic Rowers Who Got It (Bethany)

The author writes, “The women on the United States national rowing team think that young, healthy people need to take the coronavirus more seriously. They learned that the hard way. More than one-third of the team was infected with Covid-19, the disease caused by the virus, in March and April, during the initial swell of the virus in New Jersey, according to Dr. Peter Wenger, the team doctor for its training center in Princeton, N.J.”

A Bird Feeder Will Bring You Joy (Mili)

The author writes, “It’s hard to fight the feeling that, right now, everything is horrible. The world is battling a pandemic. Communities of color are still fighting police brutality and systemic racism. Millions are struggling to stay afloat. … Seeking respite from this vortex of madness, I’ve found myself relying heavily on an oasis of happiness for me: birds. … Since I’m mostly stuck in my second-floor apartment in a complex that, while it has trees, is lacking on outdoor relaxation space, my bird feeder allows me, even for just a few minutes a day, to forget what’s happening out there besides what’s right in front of my window.”