Advertisement Tarragon’s Girl’s Like That was one of the many female-led shows in 2018. (Photo by Cylla von Tiedemann) THE NEW ARTISTIC LEADERSHIPNever in recent memory has there been such a turnover of talent at the top creative jobs at the city’s theatres and festivals in such a short space of time. The lauded appointment of Weyni Mengesha as Soulpepper’s artistic director was only one of many such changes. The proudly queer Brendan Healy, formerly of Buddies, took over at Canadian Stage, and Josephine Ridge, after abruptly resigning at Luminato two years into her tenure, was replaced by her deputy artistic director, Naomi Campbell, a producer with the festival since 2013. Things look good for 2019.ROBERT LEPAGE’S BIG YEARThe first half of Quebec genius Lepage’s year was filled with major accomplishments at some of the country’s biggest institutions.First came the remount of his sumptuous The Nightingale And Other Short Fables for the Canadian Opera Company, which had to add an extra performance to fulfill audience demand; then came his movie-inspired production of Coriolanus at the Stratford Festival, which earned near universal raves; and then the National Ballet of Canada premiered Frame By Frame, in which Lepage and Ex Machina’s work tended to overshadow that of choreographer Guillaume Côté.But then, in late summer, came the cancellations of two new Lepage works: Kanata, a show that was to explore the relationship between Indigenous people and white settlers in Canada, and SLAV, a show that featured African-American slave songs performed by a white singer. Login/Register With: While there was plenty of drama on Toronto stages this year, there was lots off it as well, beginning with a #MeToo story that made international headlines. If there’s a common denominator to these items, it’s the addressing of the historic imbalance of power and allowing hitherto marginalized voices to finally be heard. Amen.No doubt some savvy playwrights will use these very stories in their future work.THE SOULPEPPER STEAMROLLERNot a week into the new year, four actors once associated with Soulpepper – Kristin Booth, Patricia Fagan, Diana Bentley and Hannah Miller – accused the company’s founding artistic director, Albert Schultz, of sexual assault and harassment. The company acted quickly, Schultz and Leslie Lester, Soulpepper’s executive director, resigned, and Alan Dilworth stepped in as acting artistic director. While it would take months for the women’s civil suits against Schultz and the company to be settled, the incident encouraged other people in vulnerable positions to step forward about their experiences at the George Brown Theatre School and the Randolph College for the Performing Arts. The situation at Soulpepper also led to them hiring a new executive director and artistic director, which leads to…. Advertisement Weyni Mengesha’s appointment as Soulpepper’s new artistic director provided good news after the company’s difficult year. Advertisement Facebook LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Twitter
SAN FRANCISCO – A Colorado jury likely threw cold water on future legal challenges against cannabis companies by homeowners who consider filing racketeering lawsuits alleging proximity to pot operations hurts their property values, analysts and industry lawyers said Thursday.A federal jury in Denver on Wednesday rejected claims involving the odour from a pot farm made in a case that was closely watched by the marijuana industry.It was the first such lawsuit to reach a jury. Three others are pending in California, Massachusetts and Oregon.“The big takeaway is that the verdict is likely to curb the enthusiasm for bringing these lawsuits in the future,” Vanderbilt University law professor Rob Mikos said.He said it’s easy to show marijuana companies are violating federal laws against pot, but the Colorado verdict shows the difficulty In proving actual harm.“There was a thought that this would be easy money,” Mikos said about such claims.Congress created the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act — better known as RICO — to target the Mafia in the 1970s. It allowed prosecutors to argue that leaders of a criminal enterprise should pay a price along with lower-level defendants.The law also allows private parties to file lawsuits claiming their business or property has been damaged by a criminal enterprise. Those who can prove it can be financially compensated for damages plus attorneys’ expenses.Scott Schlager, a lawyer who filed a similar lawsuit against a Cambridge, Massachusetts, dispensary agreed with Mikos, saying racketeering lawsuits are expensive to litigate.“They shouldn’t be the next cottage industry,” he said. “There is a lot of uncertainty.”Schlager said the Denver verdict will have no effect on his case because the two legal actions have important differences.The Colorado plaintiffs complained that a farm’s odour lowered their property value by about $30,000.Schlager’s clients in Harvard Square argue that the stigma of a marijuana dispensary in the upscale business district lowered property values by $29 million.California attorney Ken Stratton, who represents a pot farmer being sued by eight homeowners near Petaluma, California, in the heart of wine country, said he was surprised the Denver case reached a jury.“I think we’ll see more and more of these knocked out before they go to trial,” Stratton said. “The racketeering law wasn’t meant to litigate land disputes.”He also predicted the Denver verdict will make other lawyers and disgruntled neighbours look elsewhere to settle their disputes with marijuana operations.He said showing that cannabis operations impact land prices is difficult, especially if the homeowners are speculating rather than arguing they lost money in actual sales.Emma Quinn-Judge, a Boston lawyer defending the Cambridge dispensary, agreed that showing harm is the biggest hurdle.“If you know anything about Cambridge home prices then you know that arguing their value has dropped $29 million is laughable,” she said.
14 December 2010From shrinking glaciers and forests to the ravages of mining and urban sprawl, the United Nations is using satellites in space to help chart a course for sustainable development on Earth with an ecological map of the world’s most biologically diverse region, Latin America and the Caribbean. The map, “Latin America and the Caribbean – Atlas of our changing environment,” released today by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), combines over 200 precise and striking satellite images with analysis based on rigorous data in the first effort to examine changes taking place in the region’s environment.“The Atlas is an indispensable tool in formulating the future actions and public policies needed to achieve more sustainable development in the region,” UNEP said in a news release.It is the latest in a series coordinated by UNEP, and the agency’s Executive Director Achim Steiner stressed that “the stark reality they portray” can catalyze action on the ground, citing the impact of the African atlas in Mali, where a project to restore the lost Lake Faguibine is now underway.“It is hoped that this new addition to the growing UNEP stable of atlases can have a strong and positive impact in terms of catalyzing a more sustainable future development path in Latin America and the Caribbean, and in the life of its people,” he writes in a forward to the new map. The images show that the region’s richness of environments, ecosystems, species and landscapes is under considerable pressure from economic development models that, while leading to growth, have also produced significant social and environmental changes – from rapid urbanisation, often without adequate planning, in San José in Costa Rica and San Salvador in El Salvador to deforestation in Brazil, Bolivia, Mexico, Guatemala and Haiti. The effects of climate change are evident in satellite images of glaciers in Chilean and Argentine Patagonia, and the impact of mining is illustrated through pictures of La Guajira in Colombia and Cerro de Pasco in Peru. High-resolution images show the impact of January’s earthquake in Haiti, as well as changes in land use, loss of biodiversity and degradation of coastal areas throughout the region. Among its key findings, the Atlas notes that the absence of proper urban and land-use planning has created major problems in cities, which are the most compact in the world with the highest-density urban centres and present challenges such as waste management and waste water treatment. Although the region still has areas of lush vegetation, land degradation such as desertification and the erosion of soils and coastlines is evident throughout the continent. Desertification currently affects more than 600 million hectares in arid, semiarid and sub-humid areas, equivalent to more than two thirds the size of Brazil, the region’s largest country. In other profound changes, major food crops such as potatoes, cassava, rice and wheat have decreased on a per capita basis, while there has been an increase in crops used for industry, fuel and animal feed.The region accounts for more than 30 per cent of all available fresh water on the planet and nearly 40 per cent of its water resources are renewable, but the pressure exerted by agricultural use has increased steadily since mid-1990; total irrigated area doubled between 1961 and 1990. A large percentage of the region’s population and economic activities are concentrated in coastal areas, and tourism, unplanned urban sprawl, urban and industrial waste water, and aquaculture are among the factors responsible for the degradation of coastal ecosystems such as mangroves, wetlands and coral reefs. As for deforestation, the region lost some 43,500 square kilometres each year between 2000 and 2005, equivalent to an annual loss greater than the surface of Switzerland, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), with the most severe incidence in the Brazilian Amazon, although recent efforts have reduced the annual rate loss there.The number of people affected by floods, droughts and other meteorological events has also increased since 2000, with some 20 million people affected between 1995 and 2006, particularly by hurricanes.“While this Atlas shows the stark realities of how our region has changed over the past few decades, we should also be inspired to discover creative solutions to problems of resource use,” says Emilio Sempris, Director of Water Center for the Humid Tropics of Latin America and the Caribbean, an international organization set up in 1992 to promote sustainable development, which joined UNEP in developing the survey.“In considering those challenges, it is promising to note that the governments of Latin America and the Caribbean are by and large very much engaged in the major environmental conventions which emerged from the 1992 Earth Summit held in this very region (in Rio de Janeiro),” he adds in a preface to the Atlas.
Hamilton Police are investigating an armed bank robbery in the city’s east end Wednesday.Police say it happened at the CIBC branch at 393 Barton St., near Millen Rd. around 2:45 p.m.The person walked into the bank, approached the counter with a handgun and demanded the teller fill up a paper bag with money.The teller complied and the man left the bank and took off in a waiting vehicle.Police have released a security camera picture.Anyone with information is asked to call police at 905-546-3849 or 905-546-2991.To provide information anonymously, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or submit your tip online.
The conflict in South Sudan has to end in order to give the peace process there “a better chance of success,” the top United Nations peacekeeping official said today, kicking off a three-day trip to the African country. In the South Sudanese capital, Juba, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Jean-Pierre Lacroix met with with senior Government officials including the First Vice-President Taban Deng, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Deng Alor and the Minister of Cabinet Affairs, Martin Lomuro, as well as other ministers.The peacekeeping chief said that there was a “shared understanding” with the Government that actions and initiatives to advance peace are important and that they have to be put in place to accelerate the implementation of the Peace Agreement and bring sustainable peace to the world’s youngest nation.Mr. Lacroix underlined that the peace process could not move forward if fighting continued.The UN peacekeeping chief commended efforts made by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and neighbouring countries, such as Uganda, to revitalize the implementation of the Peace Agreement and to bring stakeholders together. The conflict in South Sudan began in December 2013 and since then a humanitarian crisis has developed which has left more than 5.5 million people in need of aid. Some 1.7 million refugees have also fled to neighbouring countries.“The UN is here to help move forward efforts to achieve peace in South Sudan and to help the people of South Sudan,” said Mr. Lacroix. “UN humanitarian agencies are doing their best to help South Sudanese and we look forward to further cooperation with the Government so that we can access populations in distress wherever the needs are.”
Brock University will become a reachable option for thousands more Niagara families next fall, when a new program covers undergraduate tuition costs for students from middle- or low-income homes.The provincial government’s Ontario Grant Program, which takes effect in September 2017, is designed to pay most or all tuition costs for students from households earning less than $50,000 a year.Last week, the government posted an online calculator where students can see if they qualify for free tuition or grants. For students about to graduate from high school, Jan. 11, 2017 is the application deadline to attend Brock next fall.About 55,000 households in Niagara have an annual income of less than $50,000, according to Statistics Canada figures from 2011. Niagara, which is rebuilding its economy after losing thousands of industrial and manufacturing jobs over the past 15 years, has a median family income ($71,830) significantly lower than the Canadian average ($78,870), based on StatsCan figures from 2014.Brock officials say the new program means university is now a serious choice for all qualified students, regardless of income, but especially for those who can attend university while continuing to live at home.“This is a tremendous opportunity to help more young people achieve a better future for themselves and their families,” said Tom Traves, Brock’s Interim President and Vice-Chancellor.“Our bright young people are the ones who will build Niagara and build Canada. They should not be denied access to a good education because of financial disadvantages beyond their control, and now those barriers are being removed.”Traves said having a well-educated, innovative workforce is crucial for Niagara, and added, “this is a huge breakthrough for Niagara students that can really change our region’s future.”For more on Brock’s undergraduate programs, and how to apply, go to discover.brocku.caLearn more about the Ontario Grant Program at www.ontario.ca/page/new-ontario-student-grant
But before we get there, let’s first look at what the Wonderlic purportedly tests. “What we’re measuring is not what you know — that’s what’s being measured on the ACT or the SAT,” said Charles Wonderlic, president and CEO of Wonderlic Inc. “This is really saying, ‘How quickly does your brain gather and analyze information?’” The 12-minute Wonderlic Personnel Test (WPT) features 50 questions arranged by difficulty, lowest to highest. Here’s a sample:Jose’s monthly parking fee for April was $150; for May it was $10 more than April; and for June $40 more than May. His average monthly parking fee was ___ for these 3 months?J) $66K) $160L) $166M) $170N) $2002The answer: M) $170A player’s Wonderlic score is always a number between 1 and 50, and across all professions, the average score is approximately 21. (Systems analysts and Chemists top the scale 32 at 31, respectively.) For pro football players, the oft-cited number is about 20. Tracking down the average scores by position is tricky, mainly because the buttoned-up NFL isn’t interested in sharing any broad Wonderlic data. In an email, Charles Wonderlic said that while his company has published “norms” for other industries, “we maintain the confidentiality of test scores for single organizations. Since the NFL is the only client by which we can produce a quarterback average, we would need their permission to provide this information. Traditionally, the NFL prefers to keep any information about tests scores internal to their own organization.”Like Wonderlic, Inc., the NFL declined to provide any historical data related to NFL players’ test scores for this piece.For his 19843The first edition of the book was published in 1970. classic “The New Thinking Man’s Guide to Pro Football,” Sports Illustrated writer Paul “Dr. Z” Zimmerman did get one anonymous staffer to spill some then-current averages. Offensive tackles led the way at 26, then came centers (25), quarterbacks (24), offensive guards (23), tight ends (22), safeties and middle linebackers (21), defensive linemen and outside linebackers (19), cornerbacks (18), wide receivers and fullbacks (17), and halfbacks (16). And what about place kickers and punters? “Who cares?” the source said.On its own, a solid Wonderlic score means little. Like a 40-yard dash time, it provides one tiny, standardized data point to employers who presumably take a holistic approach to hiring. But because teams have decades of data on file, they can compare the Wonderlic scores of current college players entering the draft to those of past prospects. “They simply use it to find the extremes,” Foster said. A very low score or a very high score, he added, could lead teams to conduct more testing or look into the prospect more closely.“Wonderlic gives you an area to investigate,” the late New York Giants general manager George Young told the Philadelphia Daily News in 1997. “If a guy doesn’t have a good score on the test, you don’t say he’s not smart. But you go in and investigate and find out [why he scored low]. You go in and talk to his coach. You find out how he did in school. You find out how he retains. If you think he’s a poor reader and did poorly because it was a verbal test, you give him a non-verbal test.”The most famous extreme occurred in 1975, when Harvard receiver and punter Pat McInally4McInally’s post-NFL life has been much more interesting than his football career. He’s the guy who invented Starting Lineup action figures. reportedly scored a perfect 50 on the Wonderlic. The Cincinnati Bengals picked him in the fifth round of that year’s draft, but not before his reputed intelligence reportedly scared some teams away. In 2011, McInally told the Los Angeles Times that Young informed him that acing the Wonderlic “may have cost you a few rounds in the draft because we don’t like extremes. We don’t want them too dumb and we sure as hell don’t want them too smart.”That slightly paleolithic line of thinking, however, wasn’t shared by everyone. “I don’t care about that stuff,” the late Raiders owner Al Davis said in “The New Thinking Man’s Guide to Pro Football.” “If a kid is street smart, that’s enough. Our coaches’ job is to make a kid smarter. I just wonder if they checked some of the coaches’ IQs around the league, how high they’d score.”By now, the value of the Wonderlic has been debated so vigorously, especially among NFL executives, that it’s easy to forget that the test wasn’t designed for football. But the Wonderlic is not without its detractors. Charles Wonderlic estimated that since the test’s inception nearly 80 years ago, it has faced legal scrutiny hundreds of times.In the summer of 1965, when the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission began operations a year after it was established by the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Duke Power Company in Draper, North Carolina, began allowing its black employees to work in its higher-paying divisions. Until that point, black employees had only been permitted to work in the low-paying Labor department. Duke Power also instituted a policy that required all new applicants6Duke Power started permitting current employees without a high school degree to transfer to higher-paying departments in September of 1965, but to do so they still had to pass two aptitude tests. to have a high school diploma and pass two aptitude exams: the Bennett Mechanical Comprehension Test and the Wonderlic Personnel Test.These measures crippled the efforts of black workers to advance. At the time, the percentage of white men who both possessed a high school diploma and were able to pass the two aptitude tests was significantly higher7According to the 1960 North Carolina census, 34 percent of white men had a high school diploma while only 12 percent of black men had the same level of education. The newly formed Equal Employment Opportunity Commission found that in this case, 58 percent of white people and only 6 percent of black people who took the Wonderlic and the Bennett tests passed. than the percentage of black men who met the same criteria.Griggs v. Duke Power Co., a U.S. Supreme Court case argued in 1970, condemned the company’s requirements. Not only did they disproportionately affect black workers, but they also failed to show “a demonstrable relationship” to job performance, Chief Justice Warren Burger wrote in the majority opinion. He also noted that nothing in the Civil Rights Act “precludes the use of testing or measuring procedures; obviously they are useful.”While the Wonderlic test has shown itself to be a useful tool for workplace assessment, it has also faced longstanding criticism from those who argue that it is racially and culturally biased. It’s unclear whether the NFL, a league in which more than 67 percent of players are African-American, agrees with those accusations or if the league actually uses the Wonderlic to make personnel decisions.“How determinative it is depends on the club,” former Giants general manager Ernie Accorsi told ESPN.com in 2013, “but it’s usually not ‘the’ determinative factor.”When it comes to football, is the test a demonstrably reasonable measure of job performance? Because official NFL Wonderlic scores aren’t publicly available, it’s difficult to know for sure, but that hasn’t stopped researchers from attempting to find out. Brian D. Lyons, Brian J. Hoffman, and John W. Michel8At the time, Lyons, Hoffman and Michel were working at University of California, Fresno, the University of Georgia and Towson University, respectively co-authored a 2009 study examining the reported9They found the scores on NFLDraftScout.com and CBS.Sportsline.com. Wonderlic scores of 762 NFL players from three draft classes. They found that there was little correlation between Wonderlic scores and on-field performance, except for two positions: Tight ends and defensive backs with low scores actually played better than those with high scores. The researchers surmised that this “could be explained by the notion that performance for these positions entails more of an emphasis on physical ability and instinct” than general mental ability.Today, the NFL continues to ask potential draftees to take the Wonderlic, although the test now has company. In 2013, the league introduced the Player Assessment Tool, which was developed by attorney Cyrus Mehri, whose report led to the implementation of the NFL’s Rooney Rule, and psychology professor Harold Goldstein. Louis Bien of SB Nation recently reported that the PAT is a 50-minute exam that examines a player’s football smarts, psychological attributes, learning style and motivational cues. “Players are not given a numeric score, unlike on the Wonderlic, so technically there is no way to do poorly on it,” Bien wrote.Mehri’s hope is that the new test can measure what the Wonderlic can’t. “This kind of levels the playing field from a socio-economic point of view,” he told USA Today. “A lot of guys may be very intelligent, but are not as book-smart as others. Someone may not be the best reader, but they can still be very smart in picking up things.”As long as the Wonderlic is administered at the NFL Scouting Combine, Foster, the Combine director, will be fielding questions about it — and shaking his head at leaked scores. “It has some value,” he said of the test. “It does not have near the value of what we spend talking about it between February and May.”After all, a high or low score won’t automatically doom or anoint a prospect. Just ask Greg McElroy. After doing exceptionally well on the Wonderlic in 2011, the New York Jets picked the quarterback in the seventh round of the draft. Before announcing his retirement in 2014, he played in a total of two NFL games. What it was designed for was something more basic. In the 1930s, Eldon “E.F.” Wonderlic — friends called him Al — was working as the director of personnel at consumer loan provider Household Finance Corporation.5It’s now called HSBC Finance. His employer was looking for a more efficient way to hire entry-level workers at its branches, so it sent Wonderlic to graduate school at Northwestern in hopes that his research would yield a solution to the problem.E.F. Wonderlic acknowledged that the single best predictor of job performance was previous work experience. But as Charles Wonderlic put it: “How do you predict someone’s performance if they have never done that job before?” The second-best predictor of job performance, E.F. Wonderlic reasoned, was cognitive ability.“What he found was that different jobs had different cognitive demands ranging from very low to very high,” said Charles Wonderlic, E.F.’s grandson. “And there were really distinct IQs around each job. And the further away you got from that distribution, that’s when you started to experience problems.”The original Wonderlic Personnel Test was born out of that theory. The first copyrighted version of the test appeared in 1937. Its brevity and simple scoring system, Charles Wonderlic said, allowed virtually any manager to both administer the test and interpret scores. (This is also the likely reason for modern pundits’ love of Wonderlic scores: They’re easy talking points.)After a stretch at Douglas Aircraft Corporation during World War II, E.F. Wonderlic worked in finance and sold copies of his test. He didn’t advertise, but eventually big companies like Spiegel and AT&T started calling. In 1961, E.F. Wonderlic left his job as president of General Finance Corporation and founded E.F. Wonderlic & Associates. By then, Charles Wonderlic said, an estimated 4 million people a year were taking the WPT.In the early 1960s, Gil Brandt was a young scout with the expansion Dallas Cowboys. “We were not a very good team,” he told me. His bosses, general manager Tex Schramm and coach Tom Landry, were looking for ways to change that. After doing some research, Brandt said that the trio determined that successful businesses used the Wonderlic and the team should, too. It’s unclear exactly when the Cowboys began testing players. Brandt did say that at some point during the ’60s, he remembers watching spring practice at Northwestern and then stopping by the Wonderlic headquarters to learn more about the company.By the late ’60s, George Young was an ambitious personnel assistant for the Baltimore Colts. He’d been a public school teacher before transitioning to football full time, and he asked the head of the guidance department in Baltimore for a handful of different tests to peruse. Of the 10 he reportedly looked at, the Wonderlic stuck out, and soon the Colts began using it.Other teams followed suit by the 1970s, and the NFL eventually began to use it to assess college players en masse. Since 2007, Wonderlic, Inc. staff members have traveled annually to Indianapolis to administer the test at the Scouting Combine. Eldon Wonderlic. Wonderlic Inc. As Charles Wonderlic drove from the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis to his company’s headquarters near Chicago on February 27, 2011, he made the mistake of turning on a sports radio show. The host, as Wonderlic remembers, was talking about Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy’s near-perfect Wonderlic score. Each winter, hundreds of football prospects take the multiple-choice test that claims to measure their intelligence. Results are supposed to be kept confidential, yet they always seem to become media fodder.In reality, there’s no way anyone could’ve known McElroy’s score. On that day four years ago, as reports of McElroy’s supposed feat trickled out, sealed boxes containing every single Wonderlic answer sheet were sitting in Charles Wonderlic’s car, still unscanned. Wonderlic, Inc. didn’t send an encrypted file of the players’ results to the NFL until March 1. Unsurprisingly, a variety of news outlets ran with the story anyway.1For example: purveyor of NFL rumors and gossip ProFootballTalk — which, has since mostly ended its coverage of Wonderlic scores — published three conflicting blog posts about McElroy’s alleged score. The first named McElroy’s alleged score, the second quoted an anonymous scout saying there was “no chance” McElroy’s score could’ve leaked that quickly, and the third claimed that McElroy didn’t score as high as initially reported. The third report was closest to the mark, as it turned out. The months leading up to the NFL Draft feel like election season: Everybody’s trying to dig up dirt on candidates.“Are we just so starved for information this time of year that we search for anything?” wondered NFL Scouting Combine director Jeff Foster, who only agreed to be interviewed for this article after I assured him that I wouldn’t be reporting individual Wonderlic scores.In an era when the NFL schedule release is treated like the premiere of the new “Star Wars,” the answer to Foster’s question is a resounding “yes.” We crave even the smallest bits of information about players entering the NFL Draft, even if it’s not meant for our consumption. Forget Foster’s estimate that half the Wonderlic scores he sees in news stories are incorrect. As long as the test is administered at the Combine, media and fans will fixate on it.“The only person it impacts is the player,” Foster said of a leaked Wonderlic score. “How would you like to be branded unintelligent because you scored a 5 on an intelligence test?”The story of the Wonderlic, however, is more than just a range of easily regurgitated numbers. It’s the story of how one guy’s American Dream helped shape a new American pastime.
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedRDC, NA Hospital CEO at loggerheads over Ophthalmology DeptFebruary 1, 2019In “latest news”LETTER: The APNU/AFC circus continuesApril 8, 2019In “latest news”Sugar woes: President promises severance, says ‘we won’t sell off the family jewels’October 13, 2018In “Business” Public Health Minister Volda Lawrence was on Thursday greeted by protestors when she turned up to commission the National Ophthalmology Hospital at Port Mourant.Led by head of the Regional Health Committee Zamal Hussain, the protestors are calling for a proper healthcare system in the region.Hussain, speaking with the media, explained that they are protesting the deficiency and inefficiency which exist in the health sector, along with mismanagement, corruption and cronyism in the sector.“Diabetic patients’ tablets are being rationed on a monthly basis. Persons who have to get thirty days’ tablets are being given ten days’ tablets,” he said.Hussain blamed both Ministers in the Public Health Ministry, saying that they have been abusing tax payers’ money on extravagant ceremonies and parading in the region.Over the past few days, the Ministers have attended numerous ceremonies to commission various centres in the county.Meanwhile, among the issues Hussain said he will be pushing to have resolved are the lack of basic health care, the lack of an adequate supply of X-ray films, and lack of the necessary equipment to do certain tests at hospitals across the Region.Structural deficiencies are also listed along with non-performance of cataract surgeries at the National Ophthalmology Hospital. He also referred to a shortage of doctors at several hospitals and vacancies which have been in existence for more than one year.
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Related$118M Mazaruni prison boat to be completed soonOctober 6, 2017In “latest news”British High Commissioner pledges UK security expert support in Prison reformsAugust 17, 2017In “latest news”Prisons Director urges retired officers to return to strengthen capacityAugust 2, 2017In “Crime” As the government moves to improve the local prison system, the Guyana Prison Service was today boosted with a speedboat which will aid in the transportation of inmates to and from the Mazaruni Prison.The $10.9M vessel was handed over to prison service officials during a simple ceremony at the Guyana National Industrial Corporation (GNIC) wharf on Lombard Street, Georgetown earlier today.GNIC was responsible for constructing the boat, which was funded by the Ministry of Public Security.The new vessel will facilitate two captains and 12 passengers.Following the July 2017 jailbreak and fire which destroyed the Camp Street Prison, Government began to expand the Mazaruni Prison – a project which was expected to cost some $2 billion.The aim is to streamline the local prison system and most importantly, reduce overcrowding at the city prison.Prison Director Gladwin Samuels anticipates an additional 200 prisoners going to the Mazaruni Prison upon the completion of the expansion works.“It is only necessary that we ensure that we plan ahead and ensure that all the necessary resources are in place,” Samuels stated.
…as no parliamentary extension means time running out for GovtIn the absence of a parliamentary extension of the Government’s time in office as set out by the Constitution when a no-confidence motion is passed, the clock is ticking on the Government’s legitimacy.In an interview with Inews, prominent activist and lawyer Christopher Ram expressed concern at the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) recent pronouncement that it could end up holding elections in March 2020.“That would be inconsistent, not only with the new Chairperson of GECOM’s commitment to have elections as soon as possible, but also inconsistent with the Constitution and the ruling of the Caribbean court. It means that what we will have is the defiance by GECOM of the ruling of the highest court of the land and the Constitution.”“This very act will amount to an abrogation of all the norms of democracy. That will lead us into really dangerous territory. We’ve had situations in the past when elections weren’t held on time, for example in 1978 and 1990. But never were those elections postponed in defiance of a court order.”Christopher RamRam also noted that this period would be a test not only for democracy in Guyana, but the international community, including the Caribbean Community (Caricom). Persons have previously called out the international community for their relative silence on President David Granger’s failure to name an election date after losing the no-confidence motion of 2018.“This will be a test of the civil society of Guyana. It will be a test of the Constitution. It will be a test of the international community, Caricom, of the Commonwealth Secretariat. We (risk) becoming a pariah state,” Ram warned.March 2020After a more than four-hour-long meeting on Friday last, both Opposition and Government-aligned Commissioners disclosed to media operatives that March 2020 was one of several timelines proposed by the Secretariat.Government-aligned Commissioner Vincent Alexander confirmed that March 2020 was one of the dates discussed during the meeting. According to the Commissioners, one of the activities proposed to be undertaken by GECOM during that period is the printing of new national identification cards.However, Commissioner Bibi Shadick contended that such an initiative was unnecessary.She pointed out that ID cards were not needed to vote, as any other form of identification, such as a passport, was accepted. In lieu of any such documents, she said voters could sign an oath at the polling stations.No-confidence motionA no-confidence motion was passed against the Government since December 21 of last year. However, elections were not held and there was no resignation. Instead, the Government went through several levels of court, unsuccessfully arguing that the no-confidence motion was not validly passed.At the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), the final court had thrown out the Government’s case and had handed down judgement, saying that when the no-confidence motion was passed on December 21, 2018, Article 106 of the Constitution had immediately been activated. In addition, the Court had noted that the provisions of the article were clear.Caribbean Court of JusticeInstead of immediately starting serious preparations to hold elections in the shortest possible time; however, GECOM proceeded to carry out House-to-House Registration based on the orders of unilaterally appointed former Chairman, retired Justice James Patterson. Ram himself filed a court case challenging this process and sought to have GECOM comply with the Constitution.While that process was ultimately stopped by his successor, the decision to merge the new data from House-to-House Registration and to prioritise the printing of ID, instead of seeking to have elections held as soon as possible, has been criticised by People’s Progressive Party (PPP)-nominated GECOM Commissioners as part of the Government’s delaying tactics.In the 2000 Esther Perreira election petition case, then Justice Claudette Singh had ordered that elections must be held by March 31, 2001. Particularly, Justice Singh had ruled that the requirements for voters to have an ID card for the 1997 elections was a breach of Articles 59 and 159 of the Constitution and that the elections were null and void.The PPP has, therefore, contended that prioritising ID cards over early elections is a case of putting the cart before the horse. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedGeneral Elections not of paramount importance to Govt – PPPMarch 15, 2019In “latest news”IAC urges Govt to respect Constitution, call date for electionsSeptember 17, 2019In “latest news”Govt will have no legitimacy after Sept. 18 – JagdeoAugust 8, 2019In “Local News”
Embrace the art of positive spin. How you sell your results to your parents will be the impression the rest of your family get, so don’t talk about how you should’ve studied more.Just getting into college gives you plenty of options so don’t obsess on what choice you got. to the weirdly specific…Don’t worry about failing chemistry, it’s your fault for taking it just because you fancied the teacher anyway.And from brutal honesty…Get a haircut. IF YOU GREW up in Ireland, you’ll be only too familiar with the crippling, overwhelming fear that comes with Leaving Cert results day.Your future happiness, all your chances in life, are hanging in the balance.Your entire fate rests in the three digits that are about to be revealed to you – or does it?Hundreds of thousands of young men and women are about to go through that ritual nightmare when they get their results this coming Wednesday, so we thought we’d test the idea that this set of exams determines the course of the rest of your life.Imagine you could travel back in time, and for some masochistic reason you picked that day, of all days, to return to – what would say to your poor, terrified 17 or 18-year-old self?Whether you walked away with 600 points without breaking a sweat, or missed out on your first five CAO choices, you know a lot more now than you thought you did five, 10, 30 years ago.This question provoked an avalanche of beard-stroking nostalgia and unresolved bitterness among the team at TheJournal.ie – here’s a flavour of the responses, which ranged from the philosophical… …to hard-won wisdom…Nothing is ever as bad as it seems.Enough about us – this is your chance to roll back the years, maybe save a few quid on therapy, and speak directly to your former self.So – what advice would you give yourself on Leaving Cert results day? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
Adam Jenkins celebrates his results at Trinity Comprehensive in Ballymun with his dad, Alby, who is the caretaker at the school. Adam got the best results in the whole school. Source: Brian Lawless/PA Wire Anna Carthy (right) hugs her friend Louise Mulrenan after getting the results. Source: Jason Clarke Photography Kelly Blake and Kelly Quinn get their results in St Nessan’s Community College in Limerick Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland Students at Ballincollig Community School getting their results Source: BCS A student at St Nessan’s Community College in Limerick. Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland Tara Gorey, Michelle Donoghue and Sharon Donoghue at Trinity Comprehensive in Ballymun. Source: PA Wire/Press Association Images Students from Trinity Comprehensive in Ballymun with their results. Source: Brian Lawless/PA Wire Dylan Scott opens his results in the school sheds at St Vincent’s CBS, Glasnevin. Source: Brian Lawless/PA Wire Lee Sheilds and Ciaran Keenan at St Vincent’s CBS in Glasnevin Source: Brian Lawless/PA Wire Aw. Source: Brian Lawless/PA WireRead: In numbers: The Leaving Certificate results > Read: The results are out: How students got on with the Leaving Certificate > Read: 9 adults who couldn’t be more unhelpful about the Leaving Cert > MAYBE IT IS one of the most important days of their lives but it can also be one of the most stressful.Which might explain the major relief among so many people upon getting their results – they’re just glad that it’s all over.As usual, photographers were out around the country getting reaction from students as they opened their results and managed to avoid the much-parodied shot of girls jumping into the air with excitement.Instead, there was excitement, happiness, some disappointment, bucketloads of relief, and hugs. Lots and lots of hugs. Gina Canny and Stephaine Burns celebrate at Rathdown School in Glenageary, Dublin. Source: Jason Clarke Photography Marlon Colinares and Patrick Agujar at St Vincent’s CBS, Glasnevin. Source: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Had the Injuries Board not proceeded with this additional outsourcing, it would have placed upward and ongoing pressure on insurance premiums for consumers.“Whereas the board has consulted with staff and unions, it accepts the Labour Court recommendation that it needs to consult further, and it is fully committed to this,” they added.Read: Mulling it over: Labour Court releases its plan to end Irish Rail dispute>Read: Union donates €10,000 to Greyhound workers support fund> THE LABOUR COURT has ruled that the government’s Injuries Board did not comply with the Haddington Road Agreement when it decided to outsource work without adequately consulting with unions.The case was brought to the Labour Court by three unions representing public servants and involved the transfer of core work from the board to outside contractors.Unions argued that the transfer happened without any consultation with the unions concerned or without a cost benefit analysis. They claimed that this is an ‘ongoing tactic by some public service organisations to overcome the moratorium on recruitment’.The court found in their favour, stating that the board had not complied with the outsourcing provisions of the public pay deal, the Haddington Road Agreement.Speaking today about the decision, General Secretary of the Association of Higher Civil and Public Servants (AHCPS), Ciaran Rohan, said the board is “self-funding, is not a drain on the finances of the state and needs to be staffed appropriately to carry out its important function”.“The staff are professionally trained and have effected savings of €1 billion to the exchequer in the ten year existence of the Board,” he said.A spokesperson for the Injuries Board said it has outsourced for the last ten years and recently found it necessary to extend that, on an interim basis, given the public service recruitment moratorium.
The driver of the train will receive counselling and support following the incident.Customers on board the train remained on board throughout, but were moved to the back of the train away from where the emergency services were assisting the woman.A fire engine, ambulance, advanced paramedic & emergency tender were called to the scene.The northbound platform at Raheny Dart station was evacuated for a time.The line has since reopened and services have resumed.Originally posted 3:17pm. Updated 5:15pm.A WOMAN HAS died after falling onto the train track at Raheny Dart station.It’s understood she lived locally and was waiting for a northbound DART service when she accidentally fell.It happened as the 1.30pm Pearse to Drogheda service, which does not stop at Raheny, was approaching.Despite the efforts of the driver who applied the emergency brake and a young woman on the southbound platform who also alerted the driver to the incident, it was not possible to stop the train before it struck the woman.She was immediately taken to Beaumont Hospital after she fell.Irish Rail has expressed its sympathies to the victim’s family and friends for their tragic loss.Services were suspended between Howth Junction and Connolly as the emergency services attended the scene. Source: Mark Moloney/Twitter Raheny Dart station completely evacuated after woman fell under train @thejournal_ie pic.twitter.com/EVTUgdudqV— Mark Moloney (@MarkMDub) August 14, 2014
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram The legendary birthplace of the love goddess has been dominated by disharmony and dichotomy between its Greek and Turkish inhabitants. Forty-five years since the anniversary of the Turkish invasion of the island, we remember its modern history.BRITISH COLONY1878 – Britain occupied the island, but it remained under Ottoman sovereignty.1914 – Cyprus annexed after more than 300 years of Ottoman rule.1925 – Becomes crown colony.1955 – Greek Cypriots begin guerrilla movement against Britain. The National Organisation of Cypriot Combatants (EOKA) want unification with Greece. Archbishop Makarios, head of the campaign is deported to Seychelles from 1956-1959 and Britain arms a paramilitary police force of Turkish Cypriots.1960 – Greek and Turkish communities agree on a constitution and Cyprus gains independence. Britain retains sovereignty over two military bases.READ MORE: Cyprus: dangerous row over gas exploration dates back to British colonial meddlingTUG OF WAR1963 – Archbishop Makarios proposes constitutional changes to abrogate power-sharing arrangements. Turkish side withdraws from power-sharing.1964 – UN peacekeeping force is set up.1974 – Military junta in Greece backs coup against Archbishop Makarios, who escapes, leading Turkish troops to land in north and Greek Cypriots to flee their homes. In 1975, Turkish Cypriots establish independent administration under leader Rauf Denktash, who agrees to population exchange with Cyprus President Glafkos Clerides.READ MORE: Turkish President Erdogan threatens Cyprus, and warns he would ‘take the same steps as 45 years ago’DIVISION1980 – UN-sponsored peace talks resume on numerous occasions only to collapse again on each occasion in 1983, 1989 and 1992.1994 – European Court of Justice rules that goods from Turkish Cypriot community will not receive preferential treatment when exported to the EU.1996 – Increased tension, violence along buffer zone, followed in another round of failed talks in 1997 between President Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Denktash.1998 – Cyprus starts EU accession talks.2001 – UN Security Council renews its 36-year mission as 2,400 peacekeepers patrol the Greek-Turkish Cypriot buffer zone. The same year sees protests at British military base at Akrotiri over plans to build telecommunications masts that pose a health hazard. Meanwhile, Turkey threatens to annex north if Cyprus joins EU.2002 – Clerides-Denktash begin UN-sponsored negotiations. UN Secretary General Kofi Annan unveils a peace plan of a federation with two constituent parts and a rotating presidency. Meanwhile, without reunification EU accession is announced for only the Greek Cypriot part of the island.2003 – Turkish and Greek Cypriots cross “green line” for the first time after Turkish Cypriots ease border restrictions.READ MORE: The second Turkish invasion of CyprusEU ACCESSION2004 – Twin referendums on UN reunification plan approved by Turkish Cypriots but overwhelmingly rejected by the Greek side, which goes on to EU accession.2007 – Row over oil drilling rights off Cyprus erupts, but Turkey denies sending extra warships to the eastern Mediterranean. Meanwhile, Greek and Turkish Cypriots demolish barriers dividing the old city of Nicosia.2008 – Cyprus adopts the euro, while the symbolic Ledra Street crossing of Nicosia is reopened for first time since 1964. Reunification negotiation begins afresh.2011 – Cyprus begins exploratory drilling for oil and gas, and Turkey responds by sending an oil vessel to northern Cyprus.
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Greek Cypriot owners of property built in the closed-off town of Varosha in Famagusta will be given the right to rent their own land.Turkish Islamic religious foundation head Ibrahim Benter reiterated that most of Varosha belongs to Evkaf land belonging to religious endowments. Speaking to Turkish daily Yeni Safak, Benter said that land registry records of Varosha discovered by accident in 1990 show that the land belongs to Islamic religious groups. He said that Greek Cypriots had attempted to smuggle out the records when these were intercepted and were later submitted in court and ruled to be vakif (religious) properties.Benter said the title deeds did not belong to Greek Cypriots who lived and supposedly owned the land but to the Abdullah Pasha Foundation, the Lala Mustafa Pasha Foundation and the Bilal Aga Foundation.A team of Ottoman-reading experts arrived in Cyprus in 2009 to study the deeds dated between 1671 and 1974, and went through 2,443 registry logs, 13,000 files and eight million documents before storing the information electronically along with 424,000 additional documents and thousands of photographs that helped to wipe out the Greek Cypriot ownership of Varosha and show that it did not belong to the people who lived on it but was vakif land.READ MORE: Turkish occupied Varosha may ‘reopen’ for settlement after inventory is takenClaims that the area had been purchased by the British were baseless, according to Benter. He adds that the Greek Cypriot community has a false perception of the administration agreement and that their properties had even belonged to them or had been stolen.“We know which land is ours but there are issues, such as the research for buildings sitting on this land and their condition,” he said.He said that now that this has been settled, Varosha could be restored back to its glory days and Greek Cypriots would be able to rent the properties from persons who have invested in Evkaf land.“In case a Greek Cypriot comes and says ‘I had a hotel there and I accept this is vakif land, I am ready to sign a lease contract, then we will tell them OK, sign the contract and we will give you the building you invested in for a rent,” Benter told Yeni Safak.READ MORE: Justice for Cyprus sought by Melbourne rally for freedom and human rightsMr Benter’s groups were backed up by Dr Atan Atun, consultant of former Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, who told the newspaper that Greek Cypriots working in the civil service during the British Colonial property started forging land deeds and claiming properties of the vakifs. Dr Atun stated that the British violated Evkaf regulations in 1915, and sold properties.An inventory is currently taking place to reclaim properties occupied by Greek Cypriots from the Turks in the Turkish-invaded part of Cyprus.
World Clean Up Day : le jour du grand ménage avec le monde entier« Range ta planète ! » Ce samedi 15 septembre, les citoyens du monde sont invités à s’armer de gants, d’un grand sac poubelle biodégradable évidemment et d’une dose de bonne volonté pour participer au à la plus grande opération de nettoyage de l’Histoire. Et notre Terre devenue bien sale à cause de nous en a bien besoin. Le World Clean up day, c’est un peu l’équivalent d’une maman mondiale qui nous dirait « aujourd’hui, c’est le jour du grand ménage ! ». Et difficile de lui résister quand on voit l’état du désordre. Cette grande mobilisation citoyenne planétaire est une première. Pour fêter ses dix ans d’existence, 150 pays vont participer, ce samedi 15 septembre, à cette opération environnementale. Le but : nettoyer la planète de ses déchets sauvages. Et il y a du boulot ! Mode d’emploi. Quelques chiffres pour se motiverUn camion poubelle est déversé chaque minute dans l’océan.5.000 milliards de sacs en plastique, dont une infime partie seulement est recyclable, sont consommés chaque année dans le monde. On estime que d’ici 2050, ils constitueront 12 milliards de tonnes de déchets. Chaque année, en France, 30 milliards de mégots finissent dans la nature. Et quand on sait les ravages qu’ils provoquent sur la santé de notre planète, on se dit qu’il y a urgence à agir. Chacun à son niveau. Et c’est justement ce que propose le World Clean Up Day. Qui peut participer au World Clean Up Day ? Tout le monde peut prendre part au grand ménage de la planète : des associations, des clubs sportifs, des entreprises, des collectivités mais aussi et bien évidemment des particuliers. « Il y a également des individus seuls, ou entre amis, qui décident de participer à une plus petite échelle. Cela peut se dérouler sur le trajet entre le domicile et l’école des enfants, lors d’un footing… », a confié à l’Equipe,Yaël Derhy, la coordinatrice du World Clean up Day France. On fait comment ? À lire aussiDes scientifiques mettent au point une technique révolutionnaire pour débarrasser les océans du plastiqueSoit on lance et annonce son action en l’inscrivant dans le cadre du World Clean up day soit on prend part à une initiative déjà mise en place dans son quartier ou sa région et qu’on trouvera sur le site officiel. Grâce à une carte interactive, on pourra dénicher l’événement qui nous convient le mieux parmi les 1120 déjà référencés à travers la France. Pas de panique, on n’est pas laissé seul dans la nature avec son balai et sa bonne volonté écologique ! Des coordinateurs interviennent pour aiguiller les bénévoles et leur apprendre les bons gestes : ne pas tout bruler, faire un tri sélectif et judicieux, informer sur les règles de recyclage des communes, faire respecter les consignes de sécurité… Une brochure contenant toutes les recommandations est également téléchargeable. Inutile de patienter jusqu’au printemps pour faire un grand nettoyage, le ménage de la planète c’est maintenant et c’est grâce à un effort collectif qu’il sera le plus efficace. Le 15 septembre 2018 à 08:00 • Marina Marcout
Fiber-Based Six-Pack Can Rings Offer Eco-Friendly Alternative to PlasticEven More Kellogg’s Cereal Gets Re-Born as Craft Beer Released on July 25 and available for a limited run in 16-ounce cans ($18.50 for a four-pack), FFCC may prove difficult to get ahold of: The Veil Brewing’s digital taproom no longer lists Fried Fried Chicken Chicken among its draft options.Boozers seem to like it, scoring the drink “very good” (87/100) on BeerAdvocate and rating it 3.96 out of five on Untappd.Neither Veil Brewing nor Evil Twin immediately responded to Geek’s request for comment.Evil Twin founder Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø is known for adding unconventional flavors to his recipes—from frozen pizza to greenbacks. So it’s no surprise he reportedly found his muse in Cracker Barrel’s fried chicken platter.But deep-fried farm fowl is just one of a growing list of avant-garde beer ingredients. Early this year, Veil Brewing introduced the Hornswoggler: a milk stout with a chocolatey kick, made with a giant mound of Oreo cookies.Japan’s Kanagawa Prefecture, meanwhile, released a craft beer made with cherry blossoms, Bang & Olufsen brewed alcohol with music, and Texas-based Collective Brewing Project made the Cup O’ Beer using ramen noodles. And don’t forget Stone Brewing’s Full Circle Pale Ale—distilled with recycled wastewater.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey. Stay on target Fried chicken and beer is as American as apple pie and high-deductible health plans.In July, The Veil Brewing Co. and Evil Twin Brewing partnered to ferment Fried Fried Chicken Chicken—a high-alcohol beer made with “a VERY small amount” of actual fried chicken.The total volume of Chick-Fil-A Chick-n-Minis strips amount to less than 0.4 percent of the total mash bill. But let’s not depreciate the fact that someone genuinely infused breaded poultry into a Double IPA. (Which, according to the makers, tastes nothing like chicken.)“The idea came to us after eating a significant amount of fried chicken at various establishments in our beautiful city of Richmond,” the Virginia-based brewery wrote in an announcement.“It doesn’t even remotely taste like chicken. If you think it does, you might want to go to the doctor,” they teased. “We are super super pumped how this one turned out.”
League of Legends is such a huge franchise that its power cannot be contained within the confines of a single video game. The immensely popular MOBA is going from desktop to tabletop with the Mechs vs Minions board game. This promises to take all of the best elements of the PC game and twist them in a way to make it a compelling tabletop experience.Mechs vs Minions is a co-op game for two to four players. It has programmatic command lines from a shared draft and various ways for players to take out the minion hordes. The game’s story centers around four Yordles named Heimerdinger, Tristana, Corki, and Ziggs who go from trainees at a “soon-to-be-mega-prestigious” school to defenders of the realm when an army of minions threatens everything. The campaign features ten missions, with each mission lasting anywhere from sixty to ninety minutes.The board game comes in a box that includes five game boards, four command lines (one for each player), four mech miniatures, ability and damage decks, a sand timer, a power source miniature that resembles a bomb, six metal trackers, four acrylic shards, four dice, and one hundred minion miniatures. There is even a mystery item in the box, though players are encouraged to not open it until they’re asked to do so during the course of the game.Mechs vs Minions will be available directly from Riot Games on October 13 for $75. That may sound like a lot for a board game, but considering everything that comes in the box (especially that mystery item), it seems the price is justified. However, given the dedication of the League of Legends fanbase, I don’t think Riot Games will have a problem selling this at such a premium price. Even those who aren’t fans of LoL should find something to like here since it does seem to be a very cool tabletop game.