5 things to know for Thursday, October 15, 2020

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Canada has surpassed 20,000 active cases of COVID-19, with more than 2,100 new cases added in the last day. Here's what else you need to know to start your day.

1. U.S. election: U.S. President Donald Trump faces the bleakest October polling numbers of any candidate in the past four presidential elections. CTVNews.ca takes a look at the state of the race 19 days before the U.S. election. 

2. Fighting for identity: A First Nations formally declared extinct in Canada could soon have that declaration reversed by the Supreme Court after more than half a century.  

3. Internet freedom: Canada is considered one of the top countries in the world when it comes to internet freedom, even as overall digital freedom is experiencing a dramatic erosion globally as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report.  

4. 'Dramatic changes': Research out of Ontario's York University suggests more and more lakes are not freezing over during the winter months, which can harm the local ecosystem and make it hard for people to enjoy two winter pastimes: ice fishing and skating.  

5. Moving the goalpost: Trying to guess when the COVID-19 pandemic will end has felt a bit like trying to follow a bouncing ball, but experts say the constantly shifting timeline carries a psychological benefit.

One more thing…

'I never saw stars': For the first time, a targeted gene replacement therapy has been approved in Canada, bringing hope to thousands of people struggling with a genetic condition in which their sight slowly degrades. 

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