The Department for Work and Pensions DWP repeate

first_imgThe Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) repeatedly failed to make reasonable adjustments for disabled people who were recruited to build bridges between jobcentres and the local community, it has been claimed.But thedepartment also appears to be set to discard all the disabled people theyrecruited from outside the Civil Service when their fixed-term contracts end.It is fearedthat none of the scores of Community Partners taken on by DWP to buildrelationships between jobcentres and local organisations will secure permanentroles when their contracts end at the end of next month.It is justthe latest example of apparent hypocrisy from the government departmentresponsible for thederided Disability Confident scheme, and which itself has been giventhe accolade of being a “Disability Confident Leader” under its own programme.SomeCommunity Partners were originally recruited from within DWP and it is believedthat it is only these staff members who will continue to work for thedepartment after next month.TheCommunity Partner role was devised by ministers as a way to “help shape the supportdisabled people and those with health conditions receive, develop a nationalmentoring network and build relationships with specialist organisations in yourarea”.The formerminister for disabled people, Penny Mordaunt, said two years ago that CommunityPartners would “develop a more comprehensive package of employment support andstrengthen work coach understanding of disability”.But instead,many Community Partners spent months “fighting tooth and nail” to secure thereasonable adjustments they needed to do their job, leading to a string ofgrievances and resignations.PhilSamphire, who worked as a Community Partner in Manchester for a year, has toldDisability News Service (DNS) that none of his colleagues who had beenrecruited externally had secured permanent jobs with DWP at the end of theircontracts.Samphire,who has cerebral palsy and dyslexia, said he had requested a note-taker andadministrative support, but that had been refused.Instead, hewas promised speech-to-text and dyslexia software, but by the time he left thepost after 12 months he was still waiting for them to be available to use.And becausehe can only use one hand, he says he was forced to travel an hour acrossManchester by bus to another office so a manager could fill in his time sheetsand expenses.Despitebeing forced to use public transport – because he does not drive – he was givenno extra time to reach appointments.Samphiresaid his mental health deteriorated because of the pressure of having to copewith the inaccessible workplace, including IT equipment that required keyboardskills he did not have as a result of his impairment.He said: “Itwas causing me massive stress because the system was inaccessible to me.”Every timehe wanted to send an email, he had to dictate the message into his own iPad,then email that to his work email address, log in to a work computer, and thenforward the email to the work colleague.Samphiresaid the only Community Partners who managed to secure the reasonableadjustments they needed were those who were on secondment from other employersand so were able to take advantage of the government’s Access to Work scheme.He said: “Iwould never work in the Civil Service again.”Anotherdisabled former Community Partner has told DNS how DWP failed to provide herwith the reasonable adjustments she needed during the six months she workedthere.Rachel*, whois dyslexic, had requested speech-to-text software, a specialist mouse andkeyboard and a laptop, so she could work across different offices, but they hadnot arrived by the time she left six months later.She waseventually given an ergonomic chair after working in pain for more than three months.She was alsogiven a yellow plastic overlay sheet, which can be placed over a piece ofwriting to help with dyslexia, but that was no use to her because DWP uses onlygrey – instead of white – paper, and even this took three months to arrive.She said:“You don’t feel confident. It’s OK writing an email to people who know you whenyou’re dyslexic, but you don’t really want to be writing emails to people whodon’t know you, especially in that environment.”She said thedelays were particularly stressful because her contract was only for 12 months.Rachel said:“I think an awful lot of people who have done the job have put up and shut upbecause it is so hard for disabled people to get work.“They treattheir staff the way they treat their clients. It gives their staff even morereason to treat people badly. “They justsee it as normality, and I think that’s quite scary.”She eventuallycomplained about the failure to provide the adjustments she needed but wasfired shortly afterwards when DWP discovered she had retweeted a social mediapost criticising Iain Duncan Smith.She was toldshe had brought the department into disrepute, even though she believes thetweet was sent before she started working for DWP, and that nobody who followedher on Twitter had known she was working for DWP.DNS has beentold by a third Community Partner, Louise*, of colleagues being denied flexibleworking, ergonomic equipment and screen-reading software. She heardfrom colleagues of a Deaf Community Partner in another part of the country whoresigned after being told she could only have a British Sign Languageinterpreter for two out of five days every week.CommunityPartners were first mentioned publicly in the October 2016 green paperImproving Lives.The postswere funded by some of the savings made by cutting nearly £30 a week topayments to new claimants of employment and support allowance placed in thework-related activity group, a measure introduced in April 2017.Butministers appear to have now decided it is too expensive to extend thecontracts of any of the externally-recruited Community Partners.Louise’sunderstanding is that not one of these Community Partner have been offered apermanent job.Instead, DWPwill ask work coaches and disability employment advisers to take responsibilityfor the contacts developed with disabled people and local organisations overthe last two years.Louise saidshe and her colleagues felt as though they had been used and then abandoned byDWP.Many of theCommunity Partners built close relationships with local disabled people’s andcommunity organisations, she said.She added:“Apparently a review has found that we have not made enough of an impact butsome of us have only been in the role for little more than a year because ofthe difficulty of recruiting in some areas.“Our roleswill now be taken on by disability employment advisers, who will not have thelived experience of disability that we have.“The changeswe have made will now be abandoned, and our suggestions for improvements willnot be implemented.“The greenpaper was meant to help people back into work, but they are now getting rid of [upto] 200 disabled people and people with lived experience of disability.”Rachel saidit would not surprise her if none of the Community Partners recruitedexternally secured permanent jobs.She said: “Idon’t think they were ever proper jobs.”She wasasked to prepare a presentation on the social model of disability but when itreturned after she had sent it off to a manager to be approved it had beenrewritten. She said:“They weren’t really prepared to let us teach anyone about the social model becausetheir social model of disability and my social model of disability are actuallyquite different.”Louise saidshe believed ministers expected Community Partners to come in and telljobcentres what a fantastic job they were doing, but instead “we have shownthem where their flaws are, and yet they don’t address those flaws”.She added:“Because they are Disability Confident Leaders, they thought we would sayeverything was great.”Louise said:“We have led community groups on. We have told them we are trying to makebetter contacts between them and DWP and trying to change the face of DWP andmake it more friendly.“Now we havedone that [DWP] are saying, ‘We don’t need you anymore.’”A DWPspokesperson said in a statement: “We value the work of the Community Partnersand the contribution that they have made.“It is nottrue that the Community Partner roles are ending for financial reasons. We weretransparent from the outset in relation to the length of the appointments. “We arecommitted to continually improving the employment support we offer disabledpeople, and will ensure valuable learning from the Community Partners is builtinto the ongoing support we provide through our jobcentres.“Reasonableadjustments for Community Partners were delivered according to the EqualityAct.“ManyCommunity Partners are likely to remain in the Civil Service, and in some caseswill have the opportunity to move into similar roles with Jobcentre Plus. “We arecommitted to providing full support to Community Partners as they move into thenext stage of their career.”But sherefused to say how many externally-recruited Community Partners would be givenpermanent roles by DWP when the fixed-term contracts end next month; how manyCommunity Partners were recruited externally; and how many of those recruitedwere disabled people.*Not their real namesA 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

Read More →

Getting serious about dogs at SFs Dolores Park

first_imgMore serious incidents make it to City Hall where, every week, an administrative hearing officer listens to about three or four cases of dog attacks. These officers have the power to determine if a dog is “vicious and dangerous,” at which point the city can order the dog to be trained, muzzled or, at worst, destroyed. No one wants that to happen. And Crockett wants to assure people that’s not his objective. Don’t be afraid to report an incident — however small, he says — he’s not trying to punish people. Crockett came into the position in 2016, after doing homeless outreach in the Haight District. He ended up working  a lot of dogs in Golden Gate Park and was excited to work with dogs full time.Two experts from the SPCA kicked off the meeting with a serious lists of dos and don’ts: Hans Kolbe, the head of the Dolores Park Ambassadors, raised his hand and pointed out a kink in their advice.“Sometimes a dog is like a kid,” he said, looking around the room, “if I get bitten, it’s better than my little dog getting bitten.” The panelists demurred. They, also dog owners and lovers, fully understand that many would do anything for their four-legged companions. Ariel Stephens and Emma Hansson explained the goal is to create a distraction, so that the dog is interrupted from the bite. Air horns can be effective distractions, pepper spray not as much.Kolbe seemed convinced.“Don’t be afraid to be rude,” advised Hansson, a canine behavior specialist with the SPCA. “It’s better than regretting it later.”If you have any doubts about your dog, she suggests putting a basket muzzle on as a precaution. “The safest dog in the park is the one with a muzzle,” she says. Crockett agrees. He says that he often see people trying to provoke dogs to bite them for insurance money. That shocked the mild crowd.You can fill out a complaint about a dangerous dog here or visit the Vicious and Dangerous Dog Unit web page for more information. Don’t put your hands in between the fighting dogsDo try to distract an aggressive dog by splashing water on it or making a loud noiseDon’t pull a biting dog if it’s latched on to somethingDo stay calm, take a breath, and try to wait the dogs out Stern warnings were handed out at the Dolores Park community meeting Wednesday night: fun can quickly turn to danger; the frolicking chase can become the hunt. Sitting in chairs upholstered with burnt-orange fabric, in a room the color of split-pea soup, about a dozen dog owners listened to a panel of experts talk safety and how to be serious about playtime at the park. Owners of big and small dogs came to listen to the experts. Some politely raised their hands to ask questions; some whispered tips to one another on the side.The meeting was called because a couple of weeks ago, two pit bulls attacked a Lhasa Apso at Dolores Park. The owners of the pits fled the scene, and the last update Police Officer Ryan Crockett has heard is the small dog, named Bloom, had gone into surgery after her skin began to rot. Crockett is the entirety of the one-man Vicious and Dangerous Dog Unit in the San Francisco Police Department. He fields all reports of dog bites — from small to large — in the city. The position was created in the wake of the lethal mauling of Diane Whipple in 2001. center_img 0% Tags: dogs • dolores park Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0%last_img read more

Read More →

THE latest edition of the Saintsrlfccom Podcast i

first_imgTHE latest edition of the Saintsrlfc.com Podcast is now available to download.Mike Rush, Josh Jones and Adam Swift are all featured as well as Chris Dean from Widnes as we reflect on the Cup tie and preview this Friday’s Super league match against the Vikings.To download click here or search for St Helens RFC on iTunes.Remember if you want a question answering on the Podcast drop us a line @saints1890 on twitter or email info@saintsrlfc.com with Podcast in the subject line.last_img

Read More →

SAINTS produced a titanic defensive display to bea

first_imgSAINTS produced a titanic defensive display to beat Warrington Wolves 20-16 at Magic Weekend.For the second week in a row resolve and desperation came to the fore as the Champions turned a poor first half right around to secure the win.Tommy Makinson’s hit in the last 60 seconds on Daryl Clark was the highlight reel but it typified the effort of Keiron Cunningham’s men who secured their first victory at Magic since 2010.Saints began the game well but found themselves 8-0 down after 15 minutes – largely on the back of their own errors and ill-discipline.They hit back when Jon Wilkin’s chip through found Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook in space and Makinson tagged on a penalty.Ryan Atkins then put the Wolves ahead – Chris Bridge to tagging on a two-pointer – to give the Wolves a solid advantage until that second half turnaround.Saints made one change from the side that beat Hull FC last week – Jon Wilkin returning from suspension at scrum half in place of the injured Lewis Charnock.And for the first few minutes, that parity from the win in Humberside seemed to do the side well.Wilkin’s last tackle kicking was pinpoint and it forced Warrington on their heels, time after time.Makinson broke down the right hand side in the seventh minute, earning Saints a repeat set, and then Swift showed great feet to get the Champions out of danger.A minute later Warrington though won a penalty and Stefan Ratchford showed great speed and awareness to break tackles to put the Wolves ahead.On the quarter of an hour mark the advantage was doubled too as Ben Harrison collected a nice Declan Patton reverse kick to increase the lead.Saints hit back when Wilkin’s kick early in the tackle count took a wicked deflection and bounce and was mopped up by Loiue McCarthy-Scarsbrook.It still took some scoring but the big cockney was not going to be denied.Makinson made it a two-point game with the conversion and then levelled it up in the 23rd minute with a penalty.But four minutes later, Saints gave a penalty away and with a fresh set Atkins was caught on a strong line and the Wolves were back in front.Chris Bridge added a penalty as the game reached half time – and it came via an unnecessary loose pass that put Saints in trouble.That took the margin out to eight points – and Saints nearly cut that on the stroke of half time but Swift was bundled into touch.Saints needed to come up big in the second half – and they received a massive let off when Richie Myler went through the middle in the first minute and should have scored.He bombed the chance and on Warrington’s next attack the defence had to be keen once more.Jordan Turner went to within inches seconds later but on 49 minutes he put in a superb pass for Swift as Saints spread the ball wide.It was much needed and showed when the ball headed to that combination, the Champions looked dangerous.Saints continued to come and after back to back to back sets they went ahead for the first time.Jon Wilkin was caught on a great run and he forced his way over the line.Makinson tagging on the extras.Saints continued to turn the screw and were unlucky not to come away from Warrington territory with more points.The Wolves defended out and then won a drop out on 66 minutes – only for Swift to produce a massive hit on Bridge to stop a certain score.That defence was crucial as the game entered its final stages too – but they had the video referee to thank as well as Ben Harrison was pinged for passing off the floor – moments before Gene Ormsby looked to have scored in the corner.Makinson cooled the nerves (a little) with another penalty to take it out to 20-16 with five minutes to go, before Saints produced some of the best defence you are likely to see in Super League this year.With Warrington throwing all they could at the line, Saints defended back to back sets and the Makinson flew out and smashed Daryl Clark to force the ball loose.It was a world class tackle from a player who is surely becoming one of the best in the game.And it sealed a dramatic and well deserved victory.Match Summary:Saints:Tries: McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Swift, WilkinGoals: Makinson (4 from 5)Wolves: Tries: Ratchford, Harrison, Atkins, Goals: Ratchford (0 from 2), Bridge (1 from 1)Penalties: Saints: 8Wolves: 8HT: 8-16FT: 20-16REF: R Silverwood ATT: TBCTeams:Saints: 34. Shannon McDonnell; 2. Tommy Makinson, 30. Matty Fleming, 3. Jordan Turner, 5. Adam Swift; 6. Travis Burns, 12. Jon Wilkin; 10. Kyle Amor, 9. James Roby, 14. Alex Walmsley, 13. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, 15. Mark Flanagan, 4. Josh Jones. Subs: 8. Mose Masoe, 18. Luke Thompson, 19. Greg Richards, 25. Andre Savelio.Wolves:6. Stefan Ratchford; 5. Joel Monaghan, 3. Chris Bridge, 4. Ryan Atkins, 22. Gene Ormsby; 29. Declan Patton, 7. Richie Myler; 8. Chris Hill, 9. Daryl Clark, 10. Ashton Sims, 17. Ben Currie, 12. Ben Westwood, 13. Ben Harrison.Subs: 15. Roy Asotasi, 18. James Laithwaite, 25. Brad Dwyer, 27. George King.last_img read more

Read More →

Faye Gaskin grabbed her second hattrick in as man

first_imgFaye Gaskin grabbed her second hat-trick in as many games as Saints beat the current Champions on the road.“It was a good performance,” he said. “Once again our forwards really laid the platform for us to score some great tries and we worked hard in both attack and defence.“We tightened up around the ruck and stopped a really good Bulls side getting on the front foot.”He continued: “It was good to give Emily Rudge 40 minutes and I thought Vicky Whitfield came off the bench and gave us a lift too. Dawn Taylor, Sarah Lovejoy and Channy Crowl also had great games as did Tara Jones whose smart play and organisation around the ruck really got us going.“Rebecca Rotheram was a constant threat at full back too, making two great clear breaks and showing her blistering pace.“We’re really looking forward to this weekend’s game with Featherstone and will be working hard to ensure we keep on going in the right direction.“We know we have improvement in us and the squad is pushing each other to do so.”last_img read more

Read More →

Registration open for Good Shepherd golf benefit

first_img The tournament kicks off Sunday, April 22, with a Tee-Off Dinner, including cocktails, music and auctions at the Nicklaus Clubhouse.Games Day and the women’s and men’s tournaments are on Monday, April 23.Registration for golf is $250 per person and includes the Sunday night Tee-Off Dinner, 18 holes of golf, carts and the practice range.Related Article: NCHSAA adjusts fall championship schedule after impact of FlorenceRegistration for game day is $30 per person plus $16.50 for lunch. Games include both board and card games such as Duplicate, Party Bridge, Poker and Mexican Train. Doors open for a silent auction at 11:30 a.m. and lunch is served at 12:30 p.m.For more information, click here.Individual and business sponsorships are available. For more information on becoming a sponsor, contact Stacy Geist and (910) 763-4424 x113 or email sgeist@goodshepherdwilmington.orgAll events benefit the center, which is celebrating its 35th year of providing food, housing and assistance services to hundreds of homeless men, women and families. The Good Shepherd Center is the largest provider of homeless services in the tri-county area, serving more than 88,000 meals annually. WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The Golf and Games Day Tournament is back for its 15th year to benefit the Good Shepherd Center.The annual event will take place at the Country Club of Landfall on April 22 and 23.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Read More →

Murder trial for convicted killer James Bradley set for January

first_img Tucker’s body was found while investigators were searching for a missing woman, Shannon Rippy Van Newkirk.Van Newkirk wen missing in April of 2014. She was never found.A jury found Bradley guilty of her murder over the summer. A judge sentenced Bradley to 30 to 37 years in prison.Related Article: FIRST ON 3: Deputy’s vehicle hit during traffic stop in Brunswick Co.Bradley’s attorney filed an appeal in January, claiming Bradley’s trial was overshadowed by the murder of his stepdaughter in 1988. Bradley pleaded guilty to that murder and spent years in prison.During a court hearing on Wednesday, District Attorney Ben David asked the judge to set an October trial date for Tucker’s murder.The defense argued that wasn’t realistic.Instead, the judge set the trial for the week of January 14. WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — James Bradley will once again face a judge and jury, this time, he faces the death penalty.The twice convicted killer is charged with murder in the death of Elisha Tucker, a woman whose body was found buried in trash bags in Hampstead.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Read More →

Business provides free plywood ahead of Hurricane Florence

first_img They asked that people take measurements before coming and know exactly how much they need, so they could provide as many people as possible with wood.Tuesday afternoon, the line to pick up the wood stretched out in the street.One man who saw the Facebook post came on a break from work to get some wood for his house, and even lent a hand himself.Related Article: Gov. Cooper proposes funding aimed to help schools recovering from Florence“I helped out for probably a couple hours. I have an awesome place to work and they let me come grab what I needed for my own house, and I’m sure they’re cool with me staying here. At least I hope they are,” said Nick Capps.Capps says if the business didn’t offer this to the community, he doesn’t know if he could have afforded to buy the plywood to secure his house.They ran out of wood around 2:00 Tuesday afternoon. WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) —  As people batten down their hatches in anticipation of Hurricane Florence, one Wilmington business decided to lend a helping hand free of charge.NC Lumber and Supply posted Monday night on Facebook that they would be giving away free plywood and OSB starting Tuesday morning at 10:00 a.m.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Read More →

SD MEPs elect Iratxe García Pérez as new Group President

first_imgCongratulations @IratxeGarper on your election as our new president @TheProgressives! I look forward to build a better, fairer, more social and sustainable Europe with our new team.— Kathleen Van Brempt (@kvanbrempt) June 18, 2019 Iratxe García PérezIratxe García Pérez MEPs from the Socialist and Democratic Group in the European Parliament have selected Iratxe García Pérez as their new Group President today.The Spanish MEP of the Spanish Socialist Worker’s Party was the only eligible candidate to stand in time for today’s election.Our new President: @IratxeGarper pic.twitter.com/7Hx1SDyjhC— S&D Group (@TheProgressives) June 18, 2019S&D MEPs were asked to vote at 3PM this afternoon.The decision came after the former President Udo Bullmann who was expected to seek another term, decided to bow out of the race on Monday.In his letter to S&D MEPs Bullmann encouraged his colleagues to continue the push to be the guiding platform in Europe, ‘internationalism must become an even stronger lighthouse for our actions, no matter where we sit.’My warmest congratulations! @strankaSD https://t.co/xOmxswQSPN— Tanja Fajon, mag. (@tfajon) June 18, 2019 Huge congratulations to @IratxeGarper – newly elected as @TheProgressives Group President.She delivers a powerful speech vowing to take on the far-right and the populists who would build divisions between us. pic.twitter.com/iJ4dmTtd53— Seb Dance MEP (@SebDance) June 18, 2019WhatsApp SharePrint <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a>last_img read more

Read More →

Iron Man Robert Downey Jr Stars In HTC Ad Campaign

first_imgAdvertisement An HTC ad starring Robert Downey Jr. was released on YouTube yesterday, signaling the start of the actor’s reported two-year, $12 million deal with the cell phone maker, the Los Angeles Times wrote.In the spot above, an executive alerts a boardroom that “subversive thinking has arrived.” Enter Downey, essentially in Tony Stark “Iron Man” mode. Playing on HTC’s initials, he pops open a briefcase and says, “Humongous Tinfoil Catamaran.”[related-posts] – Advertisement – The $1 billion campaign will officially launch on Thursday.HTC, a Taiwan-based manufacturer of Android phones, experienced a sharp profit fall in its June quarter, even though its recently released HTC One smartphone was highly regarded.HTC said that it hired Downey for its campaign because “Downey is respected as an actor, yet he doesn’t follow the typical Hollywood mold.”Source: www.huffingtonpost.comlast_img read more

Read More →

Google wants to return to China with Android app shop

first_imgPhoto credit: news.techhacks.org Advertisement A new report has revealed that web giant Google is talking with Chinese authorities and smartphone makers about opening an online shop in China stocked with applications for Android-powered mobile devices.According to the Wall Street Journal, this would mark a return for the US Internet firm, which moved its online search service from Mainland China to Hong Kong in 2010 after a cyberattack targeting Gmail users and a clash over censorship.[related-posts] – Advertisement – At the moment, a number of Google services, such as its free Gmail email, are blocked in China.Android powers the majority of the smartphones in the world and is available free for device makers in China.This means opening a Google Play online shop for digital content approved by the Chinese government and pre-installed on smartphones powered by a licensed version of Android would be a remedy for that situation.Currently, Baidu and other Internet players in China run Android app stores, but don’t share revenue with Google.[Via]last_img read more

Read More →

DaresSalaam Joins The Growing List of Smart African Cities to Offer Uber

first_imgUber is now the most valuable startup in the world. Advertisement Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, joins the list of smart transportation hubs in Africa as the 475th city in Uber’s growing global network, following their previous success in other African cities including; Abuja, Accra, Alexandria, Cairo, Cape Town, Casablanca, Durban, Johannesburg, Kampala, Lagos, Mombasa, Nairobi and Port Elizabeth.Uber’s innovative platform connects drivers with riders in real time, at the touch of a button.Dar-es-Salaam’s exciting, rapidly growing market makes it a perfect fit for Uber. The World Bank states that Tanzania’s GDP growth rate is estimated at 6.8% for 2017 and the country is maintaining a low rate of inflation. Businesses are flourishing, with sectors such as transport, construction and financial services booming.Alon Lits General Manager Uber Sub Saharan Africa speaking at the Dar es Salaam launch. – Advertisement – Alon Lits General Manager for Uber Sub-Saharan Africa in a statement said, “we’re proud to launch Uber in Tanzania at such an exciting point in its growing economy. As the infrastructure of Dar-es-Salaam rapidly urbanizes, so the demand for affordable, easy and flexible transport grows.”[related-posts]“We have set the standard for connecting people to world-class transport, moving millions of global citizens every day through our offering of affordable and reliable rides at the touch of a button. Our service complements existing transport options, so we can all work together to reduce traffic congestion and the environmental impact of transport in the city.” he addedlast_img read more

Read More →

Visa to rival MPesa with launch of mVisa a new mobile payment

first_imgAdvertisement Visa Inc., the world’s largest payments network, introduced a mobile-phone application to enable cashless transactions in Kenya, where the majority of wireless payments are being done through the nation’s biggest telecommunications company, Safaricom Ltd.The service dubbed mVisa, allows consumers to make purchases and money transactions using their mobile phones. The mVisa application runs on the Visa global network, hence transactions can be conducted at virtually any outlet that accepts Visa regardless the currency.With mVisa, consumers can pay merchants by scanning a QR code on a smart phone or by entering a merchant number into a feature phone.  The payment goes straight from the consumer’s bank account into the merchant’s account and provides real-time notification to both parties. – Advertisement – The QR code, which provides the customers with the merchant’s bank details, can be in the form of a static printout (either on the store counter or on a printed bill) or a dynamic display generated on the merchant’s mobile device. This allows merchants of all sizes to accept electronic payments without the need to obtain and run traditional point-of-sale devices;The payment is initiated by the consumer, providing them with complete control over the transaction.The mVisa app will initially facilitate transactions for people with accounts at four banks, including KCB Group Ltd. and Co-operative Bank of Kenya Ltd., according to Visa Emerging Markets Senior Vice President Uttam Nayak.The mVisa service was first launched last year, in India, where it has so far signed up several banks and around 30,000 merchants. Visa now plans to expand throughout Africa, with Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Nigeria likely to join Kenya by the end of the year.[related-posts]Credit: Bloomberg, CIOlast_img read more

Read More →

Uganda Ranked in the top Five Places at the Merck Africa Women

first_imgUNESCO-MARS 2016 Award winners: (L-R) front row – Maria Nabaggala, Martha Zewdie, Constantine Asahngwa, Patricia Rantshabeng, Rogomenoma Ouedraogo, Lamin Cham, Tinashe Nyazika, Beatrice Nyagol, together with Prof. Yifru Berhane; Minister of Health, Ethiopia, Prof. Dr Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp; Chairman Merck KG, Prof. Afework Kassu Gizaw; Minister of Science and Technology, Ethiopia, Ahmed Fahmi; Program Director, UNESCO, and Rasha Kelej; Chief Social Officer, Merck Healthcare. Image Credit: APO Advertisement Merck gives back to African society through building research and cancer care capacity focused on empowering African women in the research and oncology field dedicated to women health.Following the success of Merck Cancer Access Program to empower women in oncology field where they are underrepresented, comes another successful initiative for MERCK to empower African women in research to offer better health care to women.After receiving his ‘African Alliances HE for SHE’ award for women empowerment, Prof Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp has successfully achieved another commitment to empower women in research in an effort to bridging the gap in gender inequality in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Africa. – Advertisement – UNESCO and Merck celebrate outstanding African Women Researchers as a historical first. Kenya, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Uganda, Ethiopia ranked in the top five places at the ‘Merck Africa Women Research Award on women health in Africa’.Merck announced five winners from Kenya, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Uganda and Ethiopia under the category of ‘Best African Women Researchers Award’ and four winners from Botswana, Cameroon, Gambia and Zimbabwe for ‘Best Young African Researchers Award’ during the recently held 2nd UNESCO-Merck Africa Research Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia where the first ‘Best African Women Researchers Award’ was being launched.Prof. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of Executive Board and Family Board of E. Merck KG while congratulating the winners said;“I am very pleased to offer my support to motivate female researchers & healthcare providers and recognize their excellent contribution to fields where they are underrepresented”.Merck will provide the winners with training and mentor-ship opportunity to advance their capacity and helps bring them to the international standard. The winner of MARS Research awards will be appointed as Merck Ambassadors of Empowering Women and Girls in STEM in their own countries through several future initiatives will be announced in 2017.The recipients of the awards who are not only PhD students and young investigators based at African research institutes and universities were selected based on the abstracts they submitted. These impressive abstracts were related to Infectious Diseases with the aim to improve Women Health, the focus of UNESCO-MARS 2016.Dr Rasha Kelej, Chief Social Officer, Merck Healthcare highlighted: “Merck is committed to empowering women in STEM which will consequently contribute to improving the quality of research and science in Africa.”Dr. Rasha Kelej, Chief Social Officer, Merck Healthcare introduces the Merck CAP blog as Olivier Drury and Michael Johnson from Business Technology at Merck look on. Image Credit: APO“Merck’s support for research and healthcare especially in the field of oncology where women are currently under-represented will help bridge the gender gap in STEM in Africa.  Merck have provided earlier this year Oncology fellowship program to African women doctors from Kenya, Uganda, Ghana and Tanzania. Not only that we have also supported women cancer survivors through access to information, awareness about prevention and early detection, health and economic empowerment through Merck more than a a patient initiative which focuses mainly on Cancer in women and its social misperception and stigma” Rasha Kelej added.(L-R) The second ministerial panel duscussion; Hon. Prof. Yifru Berhane, Minister of Health, Ethiopia; Hon. Prof. Afework Kassu Gizaw, Minister of Science and Technology, Ethiopia; Dr. João Sebastião Teta, Secretary of State, Angola; Hon. Zuliatu Cooper, Deputy Minister of Health and Sanitation, Sierra Leone and Rashid Aman, Chairman, Kenya National Commission for UNESCO. Image Credit: APOBest African Women Researchers AwardThe ‘Best African Women Researchers Awards’ with the aim of promoting women in STEM went to five women researchers from across Africa, who were recognized for the outstanding quality of their research.1st winner: Kenya Beatrice Nyagol, Kenya Medical Research Institute for her study on:“Clinicians’ experiences and insights in conducting an intra-vaginal ring study among young women in Kisumu, Kenya, 2015 -Lessons learned”.2nd winner: Burkina Faso Rogomenoma Ouedraogo, Laboratory of Biology and Molecular Genetics University of Ouagadougou for her study on: “Molecular diagnosis of cytomegalovirus (CMV), the human herpes virus type 6 (HHV6) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) by real-time PCR in pregnant women infected or not infected by HIV at Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso”.3rd winner: Gabon Sandrine Liabagui ep Assangaboua Ecole Doctorale Regionale d’Afrique Centrale, Franceville for her study on: “Pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines in children with malaria in Franceville, Gabon”4th winner: Uganda Maria Nabaggala, from the Infectious Diseases Institute for her study on: “Understanding outcomes of HIV positive patient tracking following a missed appointment in rural Uganda”.5th winner: Ethiopia Martha Zewdie, Armauer Hansen Research Institute for her study on: “Ex-vivo characterization of regulatory T-cells in pulmonary tuberculosis patients, latently infected persons, and healthy endemic controls”.UNESCO-MARS 2016 Award winners: (L-R) front row – Maria Nabaggala (Uganda), Martha Zewdie (Ethiopia), Constantine Asahngwa (Cameroon), Patricia Rantshabeng (Botswana), Rogomenoma Ouedraogo (Burkina Faso), Lamin Cham (Gambia), Tinashe Nyazika (Zimbabwe), Beatrice Nyagol (Kenya), together with Prof. Yifru Berhane; Minister of Health, Ethiopia, Prof. Dr Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp; Chairman Merck KG, Prof. Afework Kassu Gizaw; Minister of Science and Technology, Ethiopia, Ahmed Fahmi; Program Director, UNESCO, and Rasha Kelej; Chief Social Officer, Merck Healthcare. Image Credit: APOBest Young African Researchers AwardThe three categories of the ‘Best Young Researchers Award’ were given to two female and two male researchers Botswana, Cameroon, Gambia and Zimbabwe.1st winner: Botswana Patricia Rantshabeng, University of Botswana, Botswana for her study on: “Prevalence of oncogenic Human Papillomavirus genotypes in women with vulvar and cervical squamous cell carcinoma in Botswana.2nd winner: Cameroon Constantine Asahngwa, Cameroon Centre for Evidence Based Health Care for his study on: “The experiences of women living with trachoma in Africa: A qualitative systematic review”.3rd winner: Zimbabwe Tinashe Nyazika, University of Zimbabwe for his study on: “Cryptococcus neoformans population diversity is not associated with clinical outcomes of HIV-associated cryptococcal meningitis patients in Zimbabwe”.3rd winner: Gambia Lamin Cham, from National Aids Control Program for his study on: “Qualitative detection of proviral-DNA of HIV-1 in neonates to determine the efficacy of antiretroviral therapy in the prevention of vertical transmission of HIV-1 in the Gambia”.source: APOVideos for all winners are available at the APO.last_img read more

Read More →

Cheltenham Price Jumps 2015

first_imgBACK NED BUNTLINE AT 13/2Don’t miss the exclusive Star Sports Price Pushes offers for the 2015 Cheltenham Festival.Today’s great offer……Back NED BUNTLINE at 13/2 to win the GRAND ANNUAL !!!!TERMS AND CONDITIONS(1) Our Cheltenham Price Jump enhanced odds apply to win singles only up to a maximum stake of £200. Available to first 200 customers, only 2 price pushes per customer.(2) Accumulators will not qualify for this offer.(3) This offer is open to new and existing customers.(4) Bets can only be placed on the day that the offer is advertised.(5) This offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other current Star Sports promotion. nor can Free Bets be used to participate in this offer.(6) Star Sports reserves the right to amend or withdraw this promotion at any point.(7) Star Sports general rules and terms & conditions apply.last_img read more

Read More →

STAR PREVIEW USA v Jamaica

first_img[dropcap]L[/dropcap]ive football action tonight on BT SPORT with the first semi-final of the CONCACAF Gold Cup 2015 between USA and Jamaica.USA turned on the afterburners with a 6-0 win over Cuba on Sunday in the quarter finals and face a Jamaican side who have kept a clean sheet in their last three matches of which they have won all of them 1-0.USA are the defending champions and have a good head to head record over Jamaica (see stats below) but there is seldom much to choose between the two sides.Jamaican coach Winfried Schaefer said of his side who have reached the semi-finals for the first time in 17 years: “It feels like David against Goliath. That’s fine with us. We will try to hit the giant where it hurts the most.”USA boss Jurgen Klinsmann said: “Beating Jamaica and going on to win the trophy was important as it would ensure qualification for the 2017 Confederations Cup. Every game in this tournament is a battle and we definitely expect a battle against Jamaica.”USA v JamaicaCONCACAF Gold CupBT SPORT 23:00HEAD TO HEAD RECORD(Maximum 10 matches)Oct 2013 World Cup USA 2-0 JamaicaJun 2013 World Cup Jamaica 1-2 USASep 2012 World Cup USA 1-0 JamaicaSep 2012 World Cup Jamaica 2-1 USAJun 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup Jamaica 0-2 USAApr 2006 International USA 1-1 JamaicaJul 2005 CONCACAF Gold Cup USA 3-1 JamaicaNov 2004 World Cup USA 1-1 JamaicaAug 2004 World Cup Jamaica 1-1 USAFeb 2003 International Jamaica 1-2 USAUSA will find Jamaica much harder than Cuba but should still have the class to book their place in another CONCACAF final and I am taking them to be leading at both HT and FT at around 11/10 with Star Sports.RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-50 points)USA to be winning at HT/FT for 9 points at around 11/10 with Star SportsRETURN SINCE START OF WORLD CUP: LOSS 15.49 POINTS (Open golf bets outstanding)What’s your view? CALL STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321last_img read more

Read More →

STARTERS ORDERS Monday

first_imgWhat’s your view?CALL STAR SPORTS ON 08000 521 321 [dropcap]W[/dropcap]elcome to Starters Orders. Our daily midday update from the trading room at Star Sports with our key market movers for the day across all sports.Monday 19 OctoberRACING3.00 PlumptonAlbatros De Guye 5/1 > 11/43.40 PontefractBeast Mode 4/1 > 11/44.00 PlumptonAr Mad 13/2 > 100/304.50 WindsorBollihope 4/1 > 5/2FOOTBALLPremier League20:00 Sky Sports 1 / Sky Sports 1 HD20/21 Swansea City 100/30 Stoke City 23/10 DRAW(All prices subject to fluctuation)last_img read more

Read More →

SIMON NOTT The Thursday Review

first_imgJLT Novices’ ChaseThere was plenty of business in the JLT Ben got a call from the office, we’d laid £100,000 – £20,000 each-way Disko and £60,000 – £40,000 Yorkhill. We had the jolly for £11,000 in the book. The result was a disaster with Yorkhill winning and Disko placed. It was also the first leg of the daily treble priced at 16/1. Nasty.Pertemps Network Final Handicap HurdleIt was heads down and get to work on the big handicap. Star is all about offering value to the punters but it seemed some of the cheeky rascals had worked out that having £2.50 each-way on one and then blagging a free cigar was the best value on the track. Fiver each-way minimum it was. At the off we had Presenting Percy a loser for £22,000 in the book. Watching it win wasn’t pleasant.Ryanair ChaseIt was hard to get Un De Sceaux into the book, the punters just wanted to be on Empire Of Dirt, so much so that we had it for £33,000 just before the off. Then the phone went, the office had laid the bogie £30,000 each-way at 11/4. 7/4 Jolly Un De Sceaux’s victory would have been a bad result normally but was a good winner We had the double bump, Empire Of Dirt finished fourth, Aye Aye. The only drawback was that was the second leg of the treble landed.Sun Bets Stayers’ HurdleBit between the teeth again Ben got up onto the stool, stuck his chest out and waded into Unowhatimeanharry giving it a stripe along with Jezki who was also the only one they wanted to be on each-way. At the off we were ‘up the front two’ and desperately need a result, or rather a miracle. The Gambling Gods were smiling on us, Nichols Canyon winning at 10/1 and Jezki out of the frame was cracking with the added bonus that the treble went down too.Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate Handicap ChaseStarchitect was red for almost £20,000 at the off, most of that each-way so we got out of jail free when that one was badly hampered two out, especially as the office had laid £20,000 each-way at 7/1. Nobody was going to complain about middle-pin winner 14/1 winner Road To Respect and another nice cop.Trull House Stud Mares’ Novices’ HurdleLet’s Dance was quite hard to get in the book so we were probably fortunate to lay a £10,000 – £8000. We still only had the mare for £11,000 at the off despite giving it a tug. Turning for home, loyal staff member Ian otherwise known as Ricky uttered the immortal words, ‘the jolly can’t win from there’. That was seconds before she went through the gears and hosed in. Lucky Ben didn’t hear you Ricky or you’d have been uninvited to the curry tonight.Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Amateur Riders’ Handicap ChaseWe got to work in the lucky last just trying to field as much as possible and hope the punters couldn’t find the winner. A late lump each way meant that we had What’s Happening a loser for £12,000. The office laid £25,000 each-way Squouateur at 5/1 which made things interesting. Domesday Book winning at 40/1 was the sort of result the layers dream off, especially the last. ‘Pay Pay’ oh hang on nobody backed it. Best get to the Curry House to celebrate a winning day then.Bring on the Gold Cup tomorrow.Simon NottSIMON NOTT is a freelance racing blogger and author of The Skint Mob. More details at simonnott.co.uklast_img read more

Read More →

Rice Universitys awardwinning NanoJapan program wins 4M grant

first_imgAddThis ShareCONTACT: Jade BoydPHONE: 713-348-6778E-MAIL: jadeboyd@rice.eduRice University’s award-winning NanoJapan program wins $4M grantUndergraduate program combines study-abroad, research experiencesRice University’s award-winning undergraduate summer research program NanoJapan will soon expand, thanks to a new five-year, $4 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF).NanoJapan, which is open to students from all U.S. universities, combines a traditional study-abroad experience in Japan with a targeted undergraduate research internship in nanotechnology. The program was created in 2005 with funding from the NSF’s Partnerships for International Research and Education (PIRE) initiative, which awarded a new five-year grant this month for continued support of the program.“The status of the United States in science and engineering is changing,” said NanoJapan founder Junichiro Kono, professor in electrical and computer engineering and of physics and astronomy at Rice.“More and more people outside the U.S. are doing cutting-edge research,” said Kono, the principal investigator on the NanoJapan grant. “Graduate students today are more likely to succeed if they are prepared to work in a cross-cultural, multinational environment, and that is one area where NanoJapan is particularly successful.”Kono and NanoJapan co-principal investigator Cheryl Matherly, assistant provost for global education at the University of Tulsa, said NanoJapan is unique, in part, because it targets freshmen and sophomores.“Most programs like this target juniors, seniors and graduate students,” said Matherly, who co-founded NanoJapan while serving as assistant dean of students for career and international education at Rice. “Our idea was that we wanted to touch students at a point when there was still time that they could do something with this information.”Kono goes to great lengths to ensure that every NanoJapan student intern — 16 each summer — has a successful research experience. Kono personally visits each host lab prior to the students’ arrival. He also gets weekly reports from each student and makes a point of regularly telephoning faculty hosts to make certain the students’ research progresses regularly throughout their 12-week stay in Japan.Although research and technology are heavily emphasized — all the student interns arriving in Japan have a three-week crash course in nanotechnology before going to their individual laboratories — Kono, Matherly and NanoJapan participants said the program’s language and cultural programs are what truly set NanoJapan apart.Matthew Diasio, a Rice junior who interned at Hokkaido University this summer, said he focused heavily on the research component of the experience before leaving for Japan. “I was interested in learning about Japanese culture, but I guess I thought, ‘Oh well, that will just happen naturally.’”In fact, the cultural orientation for NanoJapan interns begins the day before they leave the U.S., when the group meets for a session that, as one participant said, “ensured that we weren’t totally shocked when we arrived in Tokyo.”Once in Tokyo, the students undergo three weeks of intensive language training — three hours a day — and this is complemented with field trips to important cultural sites like the Daibutsu at Kamakura and to cultural events, including sumo wrestling.“This was my first time outside of the country, and it was a really nice experience to be thoroughly saturated in a new and different culture,” said Nicholas Riggall, a Rice junior who interned this summer at RIKEN, a national laboratory in Saitama. “The most fulfilling aspect for me was the realization that even though it’s a completely different culture — it doesn’t get much more different than Japan — I was still able to get comfortable and meet people. I was able to make friends who spoke virtually no English.”Kono said the new NSF grant will allow NanoJapan to expand its internships beyond nanotechnology and into the field of terahertz science. The study of terahertz radiation, also known as t-rays or submillimeter radiation, is a hot topic in research laboratories worldwide because of potential uses in airport security scanners and a number of other cutting-edge technologies as well as in fundamental studies of a variety of low-energy excitations of charge, spin and vibrations in nanomaterials.“The U.S. and Japan are both leaders in terahertz science, and this will give our students a chance to participate firsthand,” Kono said.The NanoJapan research experience clearly makes a lasting impression on participants. Many program alumni have opted for follow-up internships or go on to graduate studies in science and engineering.Kevin Chu, a Rice sophomore who interned at the University of Tokyo, said, “In high school chemistry classes, you’re given a little cookbook. You follow the procedures step by step, and you get the results that millions of others have gotten. But in my lab in Tokyo, I was able to design my own experiment and carry it out and produce some really nice results. That kind of independence was tremendous.”NanoJapan was honored at the United Nations in 2008 with an Andrew Heiskell Award for Innovation in International Education. The award, which was given by the Institute of International Education, recognized NanoJapan for “Best Practice in Study Abroad.”Kono said the continued support and recognition of the program are welcome but not nearly as gratifying as the impact that the program has made in the lives of students.Diasio said he expects the friendships that he formed this summer to last for many years. “My mentor and another graduate student from the lab that I was in are going to be at Rice in the fall, and we’re all very excited because now I get to return the favor and show them Houston and America.”Other co-principal investigators and senior personnel for the new PIRE grant include Pulickel Ajayan, Rice’s Benjamin M. and Mary Greenwood Anderson Professor in Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science and of chemistry; Rui-Rui Du, professor of physics and astronomy at Rice; Daniel Mittleman, professor in electrical and computer engineering at Rice; Jonathan Bird, professor of electrical engineering, and Vladimir Mitin, distinguished professor of electrical engineering, both of the State University of New York at Buffalo; Christopher Stanton, professor of physics at the University of Florida; Alexey Belyanin, professor of physics and astronomy at Texas A&M University; and Saikat Talapatra, assistant professor of physics, and Aldo Migone, professor of physics, both of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.last_img read more

Read More →

Slain Officer Promoted Posthumously

first_imgCity of Orlando Police Chief John Mina listens during a press conference on June 15, 2016 in Orlando, Florida. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images) An Orlando police sergeant who was gunned down was remembered as someone who made every effort to bridge the gap between law enforcement and the community it served.Orlando Police Chief John Mina and U.S. Rep. Val Demings on Saturday said Master Sgt. Debra Clayton read books to children at elementary schools, would clean the homes of elderly and was a motherly figure to young people lacking parental guidance.Demings was a former Orlando Police chief.Mina said at Clayton’s funeral service that he is posthumously promoting Clayton to the rank of lieutenant.Authorities say Clayton was gunned down outside a Wal-Mart store in Orlando last Monday after she approached 41-year-old Markeith Loyd.Loyd was wanted for the murder of his pregnant ex-girlfriend, and authorities are offering a $100,000 reward for any information leading to his arrest.  LINKEDINPINTERESTREDDITTUMBLRSTUMBLEUPON   Share US center_img Share this article Slain Officer Promoted Posthumously By The Associated Press January 14, 2017 Updated: January 14, 2017 Show Discussionlast_img read more

Read More →