Government plans to cut support for many disabled

first_imgGovernment plans to cut support for many disabled people on out-of-work benefits could harm their mental health and make it harder for them to return to work, according to a review led by a disabled peer.The review by the disabled peers Lord [Colin] Low and Baroness [Tanni] Grey-Thompson, and their fellow crossbencher Baroness Meacher concluded that there was “no justification” for the government’s planned cut.The proposal will see new claimants of employment and support allowance (ESA) who have been placed in the work-related activity group (WRAG) see their weekly payments drop by nearly £30 a week from April 2017.But the review, Halving the Gap?, said that a survey of 500 disabled people in the WRAG – those viewed as having limited capability for work, but able to carry out some work-related activity – found 57 per cent of them said they already did not have enough money to live on.One respondent to the review said: “The impact would be massive. I would have to make the saving on food in order to still pay for gas and electricity. This means I would, in reality, have to rely on food banks sometimes.”Another said: “I would have to cancel my phone and internet which would make it really hard to contact people in my life who support me such as my social worker, parents and doctor.”Of 150 respondents who answered the question, just two said the government measure would make it more likely that they would look for work.And many respondents talked about the impact the cut would have on their health.One said: “Losing this money would make me more worried and stressed which would impact my mental health considerably, turning the whole thing into a vicious circle.”Another told the review: “Reduced money = poorer health due to poorer diet and poorer hygiene = poorer prospects of becoming well enough to even entertain the idea of looking for work.”The review was launched just 24 hours before peers discussed the proposed cut in the House of Lords, during the committee stage of the government’s welfare reform and work bill.Baroness Grey-Thompson told fellow peers that many of those who provided evidence for their review said the proposed cut “would hinder their ability to undertake work-related activity, training, work placements and volunteering, as well as to get to and from work-focused interviews or indeed job interviews”.She said: “It would contradict the government’s aim to get more disabled people into work and would hurt some of the most vulnerable in society.“Instead, the government should focus on improving support for those who can take steps towards work.”Lord Low (pictured, during the debate) said the review – supported by seven of the largest disability charities – found “no evidence to suggest that disabled people can be incentivised into work by cutting their benefits”.He said: “Our review took place in the context of the government’s welcome aim to halve the disability employment gap.“It concluded, however, that the proposed cut to ESA would hinder rather than promote this aim.”Lord Low backed an amendment proposed by the crossbench peer Lord Patel that the cut should not come into force until the government published a report showing its impact on new WRAG claimants’ health, finances and ability to return to work.But the disabled Tory peer, Lord Blencathra, a former home office minister (as David Maclean), said carrying out such a report would simply be asking work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith for his “best guess” on what the impact would be.He said: “I suggest that we cannot demonstrate that it will work until it is implemented in practice.“I think we can get the incentives right. If we can achieve the end result of making employers recruit more disabled people, then this policy is worth testing in the medium term.”Lord Freud, the welfare reform minister, told peers that research suggested that increasing disability benefits had a negative effect on disabled people’s incentive to find work.He said: “There is a large body of evidence to show that work is generally good for physical and mental well-being and that, where their health condition permits, sick and disabled people should be encouraged and supported to remain in or to re-enter work as soon as possible.“That is why an important part of this change is the extra resource that we are putting into support to help bring that about.”He added: “We will continue to monitor the impact of this change over time through regular national statistics.”last_img read more

Labour will be forced to think again about its app

first_imgLabour will be forced to think again about its approach to inclusive education, after concerns raised by a prominent disabled activist received resounding backing from party members.Richard Rieser told the party’s annual conference in Liverpool that part of a key policy document should not be approved because it did not commit Labour to a fully inclusive education policy if it won power.He said that, despite his involvement in discussions with the party’s National Policy Forum, at the invitation of Jeremy Corbyn, there was no such clear commitment in its annual report.Rieser, a prominent campaigner and consultant on inclusive education, proposed a call for the part of the document referring to children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) to be “referenced back” to the policy forum.He told the conference (pictured) that the party’s 2017 general election manifesto had committed a Labour government to “a national inclusive education system”.He said: “Surely the point of a policy review is to take policy backwards, not forwards.“I know Jeremy supports this and Angela [Rayner, the shadow education secretary] supports this and many of the unions support it.”Rieser said the manifesto had also committed a Labour government to full implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), which commits governments that have signed up to the convention – including the UK – to work towards “an inclusive education system at all levels”.He told the conference later that despite the number of secondary school pupils rising by nearly 55,000 from 2014 to 2018, the number of teaching assistants – many of whom support disabled pupils in the classroom – had been cut by more than 6,000.Rieser’s proposal for the SEND section of the report to be referenced back to the forum received overwhelming approval from delegates.In her speech to conference later that day, shadow education secretary Angela Rayner appeared to suggest that a Labour government would demand a fully inclusive education system.Rayner said that children with SEND were often those who suffered most from staff shortages, so the National Education Service “charter” produced under a Labour government would guarantee that the service would be “truly inclusive”.She added: “That is why our shadow children’s minister Emma Lewell-Buck will lead plans to stop those with SEND from falling out of the school system.“And we would back it up with a record investment in modernising school buildings to make sure they are accessible to all who would learn in them.”The party had not responded to attempts to clarify by noon today (Thursday) what Rayner meant by a “truly inclusive” education system.Rayner also promised to bring all publicly-funded schools – including academies and free schools – back “into the mainstream public sector” and under the control of local authorities. A note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS…last_img read more

Below are the full results of LabourLists latest

first_imgBelow are the full results of LabourList‘s latest weekly survey, which asked readers about voting against Labour in the European elections, Alastair Campbell’s recent expulsion, the upcoming Peterborough by-election, an all-member ballot on Brexit, and more.1. Did you vote against Labour in the European elections?Read the full story here.Click to enlarge.Readers:No – and I’m a Labour member – 59% (5,477)Yes – and I’m a Labour member – 23.4% (2,173)Yes – and I’m not a Labour member –  8.9% (829)No – and I’m not a Labour member – 5.7% (533)N/A – 3% (274)Click to enlarge.Members:No – and I’m a Labour member – 71.6% (5,477)Yes – and I’m a Labour member – 28.4% (2,173)2. Do you think Alastair Campbell should be readmitted to the Labour Party as a member?Read the full story here. Click to enlarge.Readers:No – 47.6% (4,420)Yes – 45.9% (4,264)Don’t know – 6.5% (602)Click to enlarge.Members:No – 50.6% (3,869)Yes – 43% (3,289)Don’t know – 6.4% (492)3. Do you expect Labour to win the Peterborough by-election on Thursday?Read the full story here.Click to enlarge.Readers:No – 40.3% (3,739)Don’t know – 31.9% (2,965)Yes – 27.8% (2,582)Click to enlarge.Members:No – 37.2% (2,848)Don’t know – 32.8% (2,509)Yes – 30% (2,293)4. Should there be an online ballot to consult all members on Labour’s Brexit policy before conference in September?Read the full story here.Click to enlarge.Readers:Yes – 72.5% (6,735)No – 19.6% (1,819)Don’t know – 7.9% (732)Click to enlarge.Members:Yes – 71.9% (5,504)No – 20.1% (1,541)Don’t know – 7.9% (605)5. Should there be a fresh Labour leadership election this year?Read the full story here.Click to enlarge.Readers:No – 59.4% (5,517)Yes – 32.9% (3,054)Don’t know – 7.7% (715)Click to enlarge.Members:No – 63.3% (4,840)Yes – 29.5% (2,256)Don’t know – 7.2% (554)6. Should there be a fresh Labour deputy leadership election this year?Read the full story here.Click to enlarge.Readers:Yes – 61.2% (5,684)No – 31.3% (2,907)Don’t know – 7.5% (695)Click to enlarge.Members:Yes – 63.1% (4,824)No – 30.2% (2,307)Don’t know – 6.8% (519)The survey was open from 11am on Sunday 2nd June until 6pm on Monday 3rd June. The results are unweighted and from a self-selected sample of readers and members. Thank you to all 9,286 readers who took part.Tags:By-election /Peterborough /Alastair Campbell /European Elections /Weekly Survey /Results /Weekly Survey Results /Leadership election /Brexit /Online ballot /last_img read more

Lucca Ravioli Co slated to close as old San Francisco family divests

first_imgNo, not the parking lot next door that already sold for around $3 million in October — the actual building where the ravioli magic has happened since 1925.That’s not all: The six-unit apartment building next door at 1102-1106 Valencia, which the Feno family also owns, is apparently up for sale, too.Residential tenants of both buildings received a letter in mid-December stating that representatives of the commercial real-estate firm NAI Northern California — along with Lucca’s owner, Michael Feno — would walk through their apartments for inspections and photos. Their places, the letter said, must be “clean without personal belongings strewn about.”“These are marketing photos,” the letter reads. “It’s very important that the marketing photos make the units look good.”  The letter adds: “To help incentivize the tenants, we would like to offer those that do a gift-card.”Of course, this raises questions over whether these tenants will be shooed out of their places to raise the value of the buildings. Tenants, who declined to be interviewed for this piece, are discussing their options.A Lucca employee confirmed that the deli will close in spring 2019.Photos: A day at Lucca Ravioli in 2009Feno, Lucca’s proprietor, did not return our inquiries. But he did tell us that, through his deli, he strove to “take care of the working class.”Zillow estimates the Lucca building to be worth around $2.3 million, while the apartment building next door could go for upwards of $4 million, Zillow estimates.Two doors down, plans are in the works to develop the parking lot into a five-story, 18-unit residential building, perhaps Valencia Street’s first “Ravioli Tower.”By unloading all of its property on the block, the Feno family seems to be winding down a legacy started by their great-uncle, Francesco Stanghellini, 93 years ago. With San Francisco real estate being a seller’s market, some of the older owners are cashing in.  The family that started 24th Street’s celebrated La Victoria bakery in 1951 sold its building in November for around $3 million, sparking uproar and some controversy.Support Misson Local todayThe building that housed Siegel’s Clothing Superstore near 19th and Mission streets was placed on the market for $6.5 million last September, and was eventually snapped up, precipitating the closure of the 91-year-old business.Not long after, the longtime owners of the San Francisco Auto Works garage on Valencia between 21st and 22nd submitted plans to develop their property into a six-story, 25-unit building. Pair of buildings that host beloved deli, seven housing units, readying for sale“It’s very important that the marketing photos make the units look good,” tenants told in letter Subscribe to Mission Local’s daily newsletter The building on the corner of 22nd and Valencia Streets that houses Lucca Ravioli Co., the last commercial outpost of the Feno family, which has done business in San Francisco for nearly 100 years, appears to be readying for sale. Email Addresslast_img read more

SAINTS would like to pass on their condolences to

first_imgSAINTS would like to pass on their condolences to the family and friends of Emma Ratcliffe who tragically died at the age of 27 yesterday.Emma was a massive Saints’ fan and well known by players and staff at the club.Although she suffered from Cystic Fibrosis, she never let if affect her spirit and she was one of the bubbliest and most friendly people you are ever likely to meet.To be taken at such a young age doesn’t seem fair and she leaves behind her young daughter Mischa.Everyone at the club sends their sympathies to Emma’s parents John and Carol and to all her family and friends.last_img

He comes into the squad to make his debut whilst L

first_imgHe comes into the squad to make his debut whilst Luke Douglas also returns for the clash.Tommy Lee and Danny Richardson miss out.Justin Holbrook will choose his 17 from:1. Jonny Lomax, 2. Tommy Makinson, 3. Ryan Morgan, 4. Mark Percival, 6. Theo Fages, 7. Matty Smith, 8. Alex Walmsley, 9. James Roby, 10. Kyle Amor, 12. Jon Wilkin, 13. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, 14. Luke Douglas, 16. Luke Thompson, 18. Dominique Peyroux, 20. Morgan Knowles, 28. Regan Grace, 32. Matty Lees, 36. Zeb Taia, 37. Ben Barba.Shaun Wane will chose his 17 from:1. Sam Tomkins, 3. Anthony Gelling, 4. Oliver Gildart, 5. Joe Burgess, 6. George Williams, 7. Thomas Leuluai, 8. Frank-Paul Nu’uausala, 9. Michael McIlorum, 12. Liam Farrell, 13. Sean O’Loughlin, 14. John Bateman, 15. Tony Clubb, 16. Sam Powell, 17. Taulima Tautai, 19. Ryan Sutton, 20. Willie Isa, 23. Nick Gregson, 28. Jack Wells, 35. Liam Marshall.The game kicks off at 8pm and the referee is Robert Hicks.Tickets for the clash remain on sale from the Ticket Office at the Totally Wicked Stadium, by calling 01744 455 052 or online here.last_img read more

Thats the thoughts of Saints Head Coach Justin Ho

first_imgThat’s the thoughts of Saints Head Coach Justin Holbrook as he prepares his side to face the Airlie Birds this Friday.“Hull FC still have dangerous players but have had three of their best players out for a long time,” he said. “You can’t replace your three best players with three more best players so they are doing it tough.“I feel for Radders in that respect but we will worry about how we are going this week. They will come here looking to turn their season around.“We want to play well and win every game leading into the semi-finals but we know we will be judged on that semi-final and beyond. We want to play well with the best side that is fit enough for the next few weeks but we know we have to get it right at the semi.“We have a few doubts this week after the tough game at the weekend. Zeb Taia has a sore hip and Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook has an ankle problem. If they recover they will play; if not, they won’t. Ryan Morgan will need another week and that is probably the same for James Roby too as he has a shoulder problem.“Ben Barba was due to play on Saturday but was a late withdrawal after our captain’s run. If he’s right, he will play.“I’ve said all year that I won’t rest players for the sake of it. If they are right to play they will play – if they aren’t then because we have secured a home semi-final we have earnt the right to rest players.“We’ve had some good news on Dom Peyroux too. The bone has healed well and he is due another scan next week. If that goes well he will be able to play. It will be great to have him back as he is an important part of team.“I would be good to get him a couple of games in ahead of the semi-final.”Saints put one hand on the League Leaders’ Shield with a 26-22 win in Catalans on Saturday – a result Holbrook was proud of.He continued: “To get up early in the day, fly over and get the win and then fly back – that was fantastic for us. The likes of Aaron Smith, Matty Lees and Jack Ashworth played really well as did the senior guys – Jon Wilkin, Jonny Lomax and Luke Thompson.“It is a hostile place to play so to come away with the win was great. We’re now looking forward to Friday.”Tickets for the game with Hull FC, which kicks off at 7:45pm, are on sale from the Ticket Office, by calling 01744 455058 or online here.last_img read more

Columbus County deputy fired investigation underway

first_img Columbus County Sheriff’s Office Spokesperson Michele Tatum said there was an incident in Tabor City involving James’s wife, Linda Norris, 41.  Tatum says Linda Norris called 911 as a call for service, after being involved in a car accident on Dothan Road in Tabor City around 10 p.m. on September 1.Tatum says Norris alleged an incident occurred while she was getting inside a vehicle and she was injured.The NC Highway Patrol responded to the accident. The Columbus County Sheriff’s Office is also investigating her alleged injury.Related Article: Gun jams after Whiteville man allegedly aims at woman’s head, pulls triggerAfterward, Linda Norris did not want to come forward with charges, Tatum said, but because of the incident, evidence will be presented to the District Attorney’s office.Tatum says Norris’s firing was at the discretion of the sheriff and not related to the investigation involving Linda Norris. The Sheriff’s Office could not say how or if James Norris was a part of that incident involving his wife.James Norris was hired in April of 2010. He was suspended in 2014 without pay for an internal investigation, but was reinstated without a loss of pay or demotion, Tatum said.According to a story in May of 2014, Norris and his then-girlfriend Linda Russ were involved in a domestic situation, which led to his suspension. COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A deputy with the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office has been fired.Sheriff Lewis Hatcher fired deputy James Norris, 31, on Tuesday.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Carolina Beach fire victim identified

first_img The fire destroyed Reifshneider’s home and two others.According to a news release, the official cause of death is pending and will be determined by the medical examiner’s office.Due to the amount of damage to the building, the fire is being ruled as undetermined with no suspicious circumstances.Related Article: Person injured after being hit by car in Carolina BeachEight other condos were damaged by either smoke or water.Neighbors say Reifschneider was a fixture in the community.“Everybody knew Debbie she’s the sweetest woman, she’d give you the shirt off her back,” said Rocky Ruffin, whose condo was also destroyed.Ruffin wants to hold a memorial in her honor.“We were all huddled up over there across the street there watching the fire just praying. That prayer didn’t get answered for us and hopefully she’s in a lot better place,” he said.Several places on the island are helping the fire victims, including The Savannah Inn, The Lazy Pirate, Carolina Beach Bar Club and Buzz’s Roost restaurant.The Pleasure Island Disaster Relief Fund is also hoping to raise $50,000 for the victims. (Photo: Facebook) CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) — Carolina Beach Police have identified the woman who died in the fire that damaged several condos at Inland Harbor condominiums.Police say Deborah Ann Reifschneider, 69, died in the fire that broke out Monday morning in the 500 block of St. Joseph Street.(Photo: Rodney Elliott)- Advertisement – last_img read more

Five stores cited in Pender County alcohol sales investigation

first_img Out of those, five were issued citations.They include:Brown’s Minute Mart – 201 US Highway 117, BurgawJohnson’s Corner Store – 9031 US Highway 421, CurrieYa Ya Mini Mart – 28595 NC Highway 210, CurriePenderlea Mini Mart – 4624 NC Highway 11, WillardD Q Smith Store – 20 Doc Smith Road, WillardThe sheriff’s office says reports of the compliance checks will be forwarded to North Carolina Alcohol Law Enforcement for further ABC violations regarding underage sales. (Cropped Photo: Marlon E / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0) PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Nearly half of the convenience stores checked in Pender County received citations for selling alcoholic beverages to underage customers.According to a news release, Pender County Vice/Narcotics went to eleven convenience stores across the county on Friday for underage compliance checks.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Ironman Grandpa makes 5th trek across the United States

first_imgWILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Having three near death experiences can be eye-opening, and make you appreciate those around you who have helped you through the tough times, like first responders. But have you ever heard of someone walking almost 3,000 miles to show their appreciation?80 year old Al Slusser calls himself the “Ironman Grandpa.” He has been around this track a few times, and when we say “track” we mean the entire length of the United States, four different times, from four different angles.- Advertisement – After surviving a plane crash, car crash and a house fire, Slusser has taken it upon himself to raise awareness for first responders.He spoke at Wilmington Christian Academy’s elementary school Friday about his upcoming journey and why it’s important to thank them.“It was on my mind as an 18 year old boy to someday walk from sea to shining sea and then one day I was watching a program on television about fulfilling your bucket list and that came to the surface of my mind, and that was at the age of 61 and at the age of 70 I began walking.”Related Article: Cassie Taylor signs volleyball letter of intent to Cape Fear CCSlusser is not slowing down anytime soon. He’s leaving for his fifth trek on I-40 on Monday morning from Freedom baptist Church in Wilmington.If you spot him anywhere between here and Bakersfield California, be sure to give him a donation.last_img read more

WPD proposes use of force simulator to train officers in real life

first_img00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave Settings WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Wilmington Police hope to bring in new state-of-the-art simulators to train officers for the dangers they face in real life.WPD wants to purchase a “use of force” simulator, along with a driving simulator.- Advertisement – Spokeswoman Linda Thompson says the simulator has screens that surround the trainee, putting officers in scenarios where they can interact and respond.Thompson says there are hundreds of different scenarios on the simulator, prompting the officer to make choices like whether to shoot at a suspect.“One is a training simulator that will give them real life scenarios like, ‘Shoot or don’t shoot,’” Thompson said. “Or what kind of force to use. Even how to de-escalate a situation. So it will really measures an officer’s flexibility. Their response time. Also, their techniques of being able to calm a situation.”Related Article: WFD: House fire the result of cooking left unattendedThompson says the department also hopes to get the driving simulator.She says WPD hopes to use these simulators at the new Haynes Lacewell training facility that is under construction.Construction on the facility started last September. Thompson says the work is still on track to be finished in November.Wilmington City Council will vote on the proposal for the “use of force” simulator Tuesday night.last_img read more

Southeastern NC under moderate drought as rain chances improve

first_img The latest summary reports that temperatures in southeastern North Carolina reached the low 100s this week, leading to increased evaporation and drier soil condition and the moderate designation. It’s the same area that was inundated last year by torrential rains from Hurricane Florence that led to extensive flooding.Click here for your WWAY StormTrack 3 AccuWeather forecastAlso, the monitor also shows abnormally dry conditions exist along the border with Virginia and much of the coastal plain.Related Article: Rainy forecast forces Whiteville High graduation inside Saturday with limited ticketsRelief may be coming. The National Weather Service says two areas of low pressure, one of them off the North Carolina coast, will lead to widespread showers and thunderstorms through early next week. Forecasters say the heavy rain will create the potential for flash flooding.(Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) By The Associated PressThe U.S. Drought Monitor says a portion of North Carolina is under “moderate drought.”- Advertisement – last_img read more

Committee begins work with firm to redistrict elementary middle schools

first_img00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave Settings WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The talk is on after the New Hanover County schools redistricting committee met for the first time Wednesday. The committee is tasked with solving the redrawing of district maps for the 2020-2021 school year.School officials hired the firm Cropper GIS to help draw the new maps. You can see the interactive maps currently drafted for elementary and middle school redistricting here. The need for redistricting schools comes from the inclusion of a new elementary school in Porter’s Neck.- Advertisement – The two drafts before the committee would move roughly 3,700 to 4,000 students.“What’s important, obviously your diversity, obviously we want to address any overcrowding, but for now looking at those maps and get a specific feel of where we are going,” said committee chair David Wortman.The committee consists of school administrators, school board members as well as community members. Emma Jackson was selected to join the committee after Tuesday nights board of education meeting. The board selected her because of backlash following the announcement that three community members were selected out of 63 to help with the committee’s decision. All three people chosen happened to be white, excluding input from the African-American community according to those in attendance.Related Article: New Hanover school’s slavery role-playing game prompts investigation“We need to be represented so you can best know what our needs are so you can serve our needs,” said Camelia Albright.Jackson joins the committee with previous experience redistricting lower grad level schools as well as 50 years within the school system.“I feel like I have a very good grasp of the needs of our children and so I’ve just been involved with redistricting for such a long time so I have a pretty good idea,” said Jackson.Cropper GIS has helped multiple school systems with redistricting. The Wednesday meeting was the start of a 5 month process to decide on moving elementary and middle school students. Firm creator Matthew Cropper said the two options given before the committee were rough drafts based on geographic data.“We are a diverse society and our schools need to fit what kind of society that we are here,” said Williston principal Ron Villines who sits on the committee.Cropper’s estimates showed that most of the schools in the central portions of the county would see changes. This was focused on the elementary schools because Cropper said the middle school data needed to be adjusted to properly calculate redistricting. Cropper says the data they collected showed that on average the district as a whole had schools at 102% capacity. That takes into account the schools over capacity and the ones below it.“They’re not the end all be all there’s going to be probably another option or two than what was presented to us today,” said Villanes.After the meeting, the committee asked Cropper GIS to rework the numbers to try and include ways to have lower impacts on students as well as incorporate pairing districts. That would mean if a student has to move to alleviate overcrowding at one school, that student would go to a neighboring school district so the move would not be too much for the family.The next meeting is set for August 20 at the Board of Education building. Community feedback can be given on the firm’s website.last_img read more

Pope appeals for evacuation of refugees in Libya camps

first_img <a href=’;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> SharePrint Pope Francis waves to crowds in St. Peter’s square during the weekly general audience at the Vatican, April 3, 2019. REUTERS/Yara NardiPope Francis waves to crowds in St. Peter’s square during the weekly general audience at the Vatican, April 3, 2019. REUTERS/Yara Nardi Pope Francis called on Sunday for the evacuation of refugees held in detention camps in Libya as fighting there escalates.Speaking at the Sunday Angelus prayer at the Vatican, Francis said the already grave conditions of those in the camps had worsened due to the conflict under way.“I make an appeal that especially the women, children and sick can be evacuated as soon as possible through humanitarian corridors,” he said.Last week the United Nations refugee agency evacuated 325 African refugees from a detention centre in southern Tripoli following escalating violence.On Saturday air strikes hit the Libyan capital as eastern forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar pursued a three-week campaign to take Tripoli.Pope Francis also called for prayers for those who had died or suffered serious damage in the recent floods in South Africa.WhatsApplast_img read more

Christ the Redeemer Chapel in Ħal Għaxaq to be restored

first_imgDOI/Clodagh Farrugia O’NeillDOI/Clodagh Farrugia O’Neill The chapel dedicated to Christ the Redeemer in Ħal Għaxaq will be restored by the Restoration Directorate.This was announced by Culture Minister Owen Bonnici during a visit on site.Bonnici said that the fifth call for applications under the Local Council Restoration Works Scheme was recently launched. He reiterated the Ministry’s commitment toward local heritage saying that it is manifested in such initatives.The work that is being suggested includes an intervention on the facades and parvis, where cleaning will be done by using very light dry brushing. Dirt and black crust have accumulated in areas not washed by rain and deterioration in the stone surface is present in all parts of the facade.Further the plaster will be removed, and reconstitution of damaged stone where possible will be done. Sculptural and decorative stonework where missing or heavily deteriorated will be replaced using appropriate templates.The chapel was built in 1852 on the site of a wayside shrine dedicated to Christ the Redeemer erected in 1807. It was built through donations given by the inhabitants of the village as well as the benefactors residing outside the village. it was designed by Francesco Carabott a Capo Mastro from Żejtun.WhatsApp <a href=’;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> SharePrintlast_img read more

Microsoft partners to bring TV white spaces pilot project to Tanzania

first_imgAdvertisement Microsoft Corporation has announced a TV white spaces pilot project in collaboration with the Tanzania Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH) and UhuruOne to provide affordable wireless broadband access to university students and faculty in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.TV white spaces technology is an innovative, tested and affordable method of providing wireless broadband by tapping into unused portions of wireless spectrum in the frequency bands generally used for television.Although Africa has the highest growth rates in the world for mobile broadband penetration, wireless broadband services remain largely unaffordable throughout the region. This pilot looks to improve that situation by focusing on broadband access in the essential area of education, an effort that will increase digital literacy, teach technical skills, advance e-learning and ultimately promote economic growth. – Advertisement – The pilot’s initial deployment in Dar es Salaam will target the University of Dar es Salaam, among others. “We anticipate that tens of thousands of Tanzanian students and faculty members will be able to take advantage of the wireless broadband packages offered by UhuruOne through the project,” said Dr. Hassan Mshinda, director general, COSTECH.These integrated solutions will include a Windows 8 laptop or tablet, wireless broadband connectivity, and applications and services. The partners are working with banks to offer small loans to cover the cost of the packages.In addition to offering affordable connectivity, devices and services, the pilot will hire a team of students as on-campus support staff for the network infrastructure. These students will benefit not only from employment but also from the opportunity to learn highly valued technical skills and gain qualifications for pursuing IT-related careers in the future.“UhuruOne is not only an Internet service provider — we are social entrepreneurs working to reduce the digital divide,” said Mihayo Wilmore, founding partner, UhuruOne. “This project exemplifies our approach to connecting underserved populations. We are committed to increasing the affordability, accessibility and availability of broadband service in Tanzania and are pleased to be working with Microsoft and COSTECH in this critical effort.”The Tanzania pilot follows a similar project Microsoft launched in Kenya in February, which uses white spaces and solar power to deliver low-cost wireless broadband to rural locations without previous access to broadband or reliable electricity. These pilot projects and similar initiatives are part of the Microsoft 4Afrika Initiative, a new series of investments designed to enable Microsoft to actively engage in Africa’s economic development and to improve its global competitiveness.As part of that effort, the company is committed to working with African governments to help drive a clear understanding of the legal and regulatory environment needed for white spaces technology to be commercially deployed on a large scale, to the benefit of all Africans.“After announcing our ‘Mawingu’ pilot in Kenya, Microsoft has been flooded with requests from a wide range of companies and governments interested in developing similar projects,” said Paul Garnett, director at Microsoft ’s Technology Policy Group.“White spaces technology and efficient spectrum management have a huge potential for expanding affordable broadband access throughout the world. We hope all governments will follow the example of forward-looking countries like Kenya, Tanzania and many others that have taken steps to support deployment of white spaces technology.” He added.Source: The Financiallast_img read more

Cape Town cancels WiFitothehome plans

first_imgAdvertisement The City Council of Cape Town has scrapped its plans to install access points to create a wireless network capable of providing Wi-Fi to each home, as the project was deemed ‘too costly and complex’.Although the initial plan envisioned Wi-Fi internet access directly into homes, following a technical feasibility proofing and a trial phase in selected locations throughout the city, the city’s telecoms team established that boosters would need to be fitted to each house to deliver the planned results.Cape Town’s executive mayor, Patricia de Lille, said said that this would not only have been costly to install, it would have also been complex to manage owing to a range of structural factors, as well as weather-related constraints and safety issues. – Advertisement – The technical team also found that custom-building household access networks in this way results in a low number of users per access point. In addition, the deployment of such a network would be complex and too slow. The network would in time have become redundant, given the gradual proliferation of commercial mobile internet services.However, the city of Cape Town is still planning to expand its Wi-Fi offering to 61 clinics, administration buildings, traffic departments, fire stations and public transport interchanges in Langa, Nyanga, Uitsig, Valhalla Park, Athlone and Atlantis by June 2015.‘Wi-Fi will be provided both inside public buildings, via our 102 SmartCape Computer facilities, and externally via 61 public access hotspots in areas where members of the public congregate and queue for services’, the executive explained.Source: www.telegeography.comlast_img read more

Africa Reconnect awards 11 outstanding Africans for being agents of change

first_imgAdvertisement Africa Reconnect, a platform for women who have made remarkable contributions to the growth and development of the various nations in Africa has today awarded 11 Africans whose contributions to women empowerment in their countries is outstanding.The award ceremony, which took place in Polokwane, Limpopo South Africa, concluded a two day empowerment conference themed ” Accelerating Positive Change”.The 2015 awards recipient included; Seja Lorraine Semenya for best Cultural Developer in Africa, Dr. K. S Malukele for Best Community Developer in Africa, Mphatheleni Makaulele for Most Inspiring Woman in Africa, all from South Africa, The first lady of Akwibo State for Best Philanthropic in Africa and Irene Kiwia from Tanzania won Woman of the Year Africa award. – Advertisement – Prof. Philip venter from South Africa for outstanding man innovator, Prof. Uphie Chinje from Cameroon for African Frontline Researcher of the year, Dinah Denga from South Africa for best female Farmer in Africa 2015, Sibusisi Leope from South Africa for Most Outstanding African Man, Mrs. Evelyn Lungu Chama from Zambia for Ideal Educator in Africa and Zorha Khan from South Africa for Most Involved Community Developer in Africa 2015.Mrs Nomdeni Chengeta founder of Africa Reconnect said “While it is true that women in Africa and in most parts of the world still face discrimination and marginalization, as well as non-recognition and disrespect, many are facing these challenges with great perseverance and strength and are daily creating history, changing the status quo. Africa Reconnect aims to showcase women who have attained prominence in Africa in various areas of endeavour and are impacting the future.”Mrs Chengeta further stated that “we are happy to bring into attention the work that women are doing in the African continent which will be a source of inspiration and motivation for other women. Women have made remarkable contributions to the growth and development of the various nations in Africa and without these women, and some men, the history of the countries would not be different from what it is today. Some of these women have been appreciated and celebrated while some have been completely ignored.”Africa Reconnect’s will continue on its mission to inspire hope, empower and celebrate women around the African continent who are imparting the future with ideas and innovations and ultimately connecting African women champions with the rest of the world.last_img read more

Alphabet subsidiaries will have to cough up a fee to use Googles

first_imgGoogle took everyone by surprise by announcing the parent company Alphabet. Image Credit: RewittyFeed Advertisement Earlier this year, Google took everyone by surprise by announcing the parent company –Alphabet. With this shake up, it created separate subsidiaries for projects that weren’t a core part of Google.Now, a new report by The Wall Street Journal, reveals that the subsidiaries of Alphabet may now have to pay Google for using its core infrastructure. This will mean subsidiaries like Nest and Google X will have to pay to use the established services of Google.“Alphabet will charge bet companies based on an estimate of what they would pay to buy the service elsewhere. Another goal is to create financial statements that can be audited for each business, making it easier for them to be spun off or separated from Alphabet in the future, one of the people said,” the report adds.[related-posts] – Advertisement – The subsidiaries now have the freedom to have their own recruiting and also build their own infrastructure. For instance, Nest focusing on making homes smarter reportedly now has its own legal and marketing team and also rents computer services from Google’s rival move is also said to be a way to help appease Wall Street investors. Also, the balance sheet will make it clear to understand how a particular project is functioning. “The arrangement continues the steady drumbeat in recent months of Google trying to show Wall Street it can reign in some portion of its wild costs for areas outside its core online advertising business, and offer a more sustainable roadmap for future innovation,” points out Mashable.last_img read more