January 17, 2018This past week, the Cosanti Foundation participated in the first Habitat Meeting of 2018. Organized by Planning Manager Kevin Pappa and Habitat Manager Scott Riley, the meeting was organized so that each department could explain their needs for the next 5 months and pitch the projects they’d like to see accomplished.Setting goals for the first half of 2018 for five different departments, managers and team leaders from each department were able to lay out each of their projects specifications. Speakers included Kevin – Planning Manager, Jona – Metalshop team leader, Scott – Habitat Manager, Joel – Construction Manager, and David – Construction team leader.The projects and goals set at this meeting will guide the work done by each department as well as the projects that the 2018 workshops will participant for the first half of this year.(photos by Rebecca Weeks, text by Shannon Mackenzie)
Police on Thursday arrested a 37-year-old man from Peyia to help investigations into a case involving felony, the illegal possession and possession of drugs with intent to supply and the illicit cultivation of cannabis plants.On Thursday police searched two houses in Kathikas, Paphos, and discovered a cannabis plantation with 68 cannabis plants 20 cm to 150 cm tall and 8.9 kg of cannabis.Initially a man and a woman, both 51, were arrested and provided evidence against the 37-year-old. You May LikeClassmates.comLook For Any High School Yearbook, It’s FreeClassmates.comUndoFigLeaf Beta AppHow to Become Fully Anonymous Online in Less Than 3 Minutes? Better safe than sorryFigLeaf Beta AppUndoTruthFinder People Search SubscriptionOne Thing All Liars Have in Common, Brace YourselfTruthFinder People Search SubscriptionUndo Turkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoConcern over falling tourism numbersUndoIsraeli rape suspects freed, woman who alleged assault arrested (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboola
Last year, 16 cent of the EU population (75 million people) and 21 per cent of Cypriots, suffered from material and social deprivation, according to data released on Tuesday by Eurostat, the statistical service of the EU.According to the definitions of “material and social deprivation”, Eurostat uses, this means that these citizens could not afford at least five items out of this list:– face unexpected expenses;– one week annual holiday away from home;– avoid arrears (in mortgage, rent, utility bills and/or hire purchase instalments);– afford a meal with meat, chicken or fish or a vegetarian equivalent every second day;– keep their home adequately warm;– a car/van for personal use;– replace worn-out furniture;– replace worn-out clothes with some new ones;– have two pairs of properly fitting shoes;– spend a small amount of money each week on him/herself (“pocket money”);– have regular leisure activities;– get together with friends/family for a drink/meal at least once a month;– have an internet connection.According to Eurostat, in 2016 the highest material and social deprivation rate, applying to about half of the population, was registered in Romania (50 per cent) and Bulgaria (48 per cent), followed by countries where one in three persons was affected: Greece (36 per cent), Hungary (32 per cent) and Lithuania (29 per cent).In contrast, the Nordic Member States and Luxembourg reported the lowest rate of material and social deprivation: 3 per cent in Sweden, 4 per cent in Finland, 5 per cent in Luxembourg and 6 per cent in Denmark.In all EU Member States, the material and social deprivation rates are higher among people with low (lower secondary or less) education level. One in four people (25 per cent) with low education level in the EU suffer from the material and social deprivation, while this rate drops to one in seven (14 per cent) for those with upper secondary education and further to one in twenty (5 per cent) among people with higher (tertiary) education.CNAYou May LikeDr. Marty ProPower Plus Supplement3 Dangerous Foods People Feed Their Dogs (Without Realizing It)Dr. Marty ProPower Plus SupplementUndoSecurity SaversWindows Users Advised To Do This TodaySecurity SaversUndoYahoo SearchThese SUVs Are The Cream Of The Crop. Research Best Compact SUV CarYahoo SearchUndo Turkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoConcern over falling tourism numbersUndoOur View: Argaka mukhtar should not act as if he owns the beachUndoby Taboolaby Taboola
The House plenum voted on Wednesday against President Nicos Anstasiades’ referral back to parliament of a bill to grant paternity leave and benefits to unmarried couples.Twenty-nine MPs voted against the bill, while 15 voted in favour and one MP abstained.The bill – tabled by main opposition Akel – had passed by majority, but Anastasiades refused to sign it and sent it back to parliament.Following Wednesday’s vote, the bill will now go back to the president and if he again refuses to sign it, it will go to the supreme court for a final decision.The president said the law breached articles 80 and 54 of the constitution.Article 80.2. states that “No bill relating to an increase in budgetary expenditure can be introduced by any representative.”The government says extending paternity leave to unmarried fathers would incur additional cost to the social insurance fund, and that these extra costs had not been budgeted.Article 54 of the constitution states that only the executive branch of government has the power to direct ‘general policy’.Wednesday’s outcome had been expected. On Tuesday, Akel MP and chairman of the House labour committee Andreas Fakondis said his party would reject the president’s referral while ruling Disy said they would back the president’s move.Fakondis had said the bill aimed to end the discrimination against unmarried fathers, given that unmarried mothers receive maternity leave.Akel argues that paternity should not be defined as the father being in a marriage or civil partnership, and that therefore excluding those who do not fall into these two categories from the right to paternity leave is discriminatory.You May LikeHealth & Human ResearchLook What Happens if You Put Garlic Under Your PillowHealth & Human ResearchUndoTravel BlogIf You Like Danger, You Must Visit These BeachesTravel BlogUndoBrilliant EarthTop Engagement Ring Trends for 2019Brilliant EarthUndo At least 20 killed, 50 injured in attack on VP candidate’s office in KabulUndoCompanies must use buying power to root out slavery, says UK officialUndoThe Deniz boat incident showed clearly the intentions of the Turkish sideUndoby Taboolaby Taboola
By Staff ReporterThe health ministry on Friday announced that the price of almost 2,000 medicines had been reduced on average by around 15.5 per cent but in some cases the reductions were as high as 80 per cent.The new prices will come into effect on Monday. The ministry said further reductions of 8-10 per cent would be put in place in March. Also from now on the revision of drugs prices will be done once a year instead of every two years. The recommendations are in line with a report last year from the World Health Organisation that put medicine prices in Cyprus among the highest in the world.An updated price list includes the maximum retail and wholesale prices of 5,374 medicines, of which 1,968 were reduced while 442 are to remain at current levels. Another 333 drugs were already under a price freeze, which is to remain in force. The remainder, those non-prescription medicines whose price is below €10 are exempt from price controls.The reductions include for instance a drop in the price of Zithromax antibiotic by over 50 per cent, cholesterol pills Lipitor and Zocor by around 30 per cent, medication for nervous system disorders – Keppra and Ebixa – by around 40 per cent, and musculoskeletal drugs such as Fosamax by 16 per cent.The ministry said other changes underway included legislation concerning the composition of the audit committee on pharmaceutical prices.“The primary concern and goal of the health minister is to ensure the unhindered access of patients to medication at affordable prices,” the ministry said in a statement. “Achieving this goal is paramount, especially in view of the imminent implementation of the NHS.” This would also lead to further future reductions.The ministry said it would continue the social dialogue with all stakeholders, such as pharmacists, drug importers, manufacturers and patients’ groups.You May LikeDr. Marty ProPower Plus Supplement3 Dangerous Foods People Feed Their Dogs (Without Realizing It)Dr. Marty ProPower Plus SupplementUndoLuxury Crossover SUV I Search AdsThese SUVs Are The Cream Of The Crop. Search For 2019 Luxury Crossover SUV DealsLuxury Crossover SUV I Search AdsUndoUltimate Pet Nutrition Nutra Thrive SupplementAdd This One Thing To Your Dog’s Food To Help Them Be HealthierUltimate Pet Nutrition Nutra Thrive SupplementUndo Concern over falling tourism numbersUndoTurkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoIsraeli rape suspects freed, woman who alleged assault arrested (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboola
Following Nicosia and Limassol, UniteCyprusNow will be organising its third town-hall meeting in Famagusta on Thursday.The meeting will be held between 6.30pm and 8.30pm at Mağusa Gelişim Akademisi on Ismet Inönü Blvd — Salamis Street — opposite Osman Fazil Polat Paşa Mosque in Famagusta.“Everyone is invited to attend and discuss with us the way forward in our effort to reverse the trend towards partition and find ways to build a common homeland together,” the group said in a statement.The findings of all three meetings will then be discussed at an open meeting in Nicosia at a date to be announced later. You May LikeLuxury Crossover SUV I Search AdsThese SUVs Are The Cream Of The Crop. Search For 2019 Luxury Crossover SUV DealsLuxury Crossover SUV I Search AdsUndoGundry MD ProPlant Complete Shake SupplementTop Heart Surgeon: Throw Out The Hot Dogs In Your Fridge Now!Gundry MD ProPlant Complete Shake SupplementUndoTown and Country | HanacureSee Why Celebrities Love This Face MaskTown and Country | HanacureUndo Concern over falling tourism numbersUndoTurkish Cypriot actions in Varosha ‘a clear violation’ of UN resolutions, Nicosia saysUndoPensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoby Taboolaby Taboola
The chance that flights will be grounded between the UK and the European Union in the event of a no-deal Brexit is “close to zero”, said tourism minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis.The economy of Cyprus is heavily dependent on tourism, and over a third of its annual four million visitors come from the UK.Asked about the possible impact of Brexit, and specifically a no-deal Brexit, where the UK would leave the European Union next March without new aviation rights or other new trade links agreed, the minister said a worst case scenario on flights would be avoided.“I see the probability of flights being grounded between the EU and the UK pretty close to zero,” he said.“No aviation connection will impact everything so it is not to the interest of anyone for such an eventuality. ..That’s why I sound optimistic regardless of the outcome of negotiations for a Brexit deal or not.”The chief executive of Ryanair, one of Europe’s biggest airlines, has warned that if there is a no-deal Brexit, UK flights could be grounded for up to three weeks.Lakkotrypis said that Cyprus would be able to maintain connections with Britain whatever the outcome of Brexit.“Let’s not forget we’re also members of the Commonwealth so we have had strong ties even before Cyprus joined the European Union so I think it will come natural for us to rebuild ties,” he said in an interview on Monday.You May LikePlarium I Vikings: Free Online GamePlay this for 1 minute and see why everyone is addictedPlarium I Vikings: Free Online GameUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoGundry MD Total Restore SupplementU.S. Cardiologist: It’s Like a Pressure Wash for Your InsidesGundry MD Total Restore SupplementUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoRemand for pair in alleged property fraud (Updated)UndoThree arrested in connection with hotel theftsUndoby Taboolaby Taboola
Athens announced on Friday night that UN envoy Jane Holl lute would be in the Greek capital next Tuesday.The announcement came after the Greek foreign minister briefed the National Council on Foreign Policy.During the meeting it was confirmed that the national line on the Cyprus problem was that it was an issue of invasion to be tackled primarily in terms of international law with an “end to the unacceptable system of guarantees and the withdrawal of occupying troops with a specific timetable”.Lute was in Cyprus at the beginning of the month. Her task is to facilitate the leaders in coming up with terms of reference for a new round of negotiations.She is to have contacts in Athens and Ankara before returning to Cyprus.You May LikeLivestlyChip And Joanna’s $18M Mansion Is Perfect, But It’s The Backyard Everyone Is Talking AboutLivestlyUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndoYahoo SearchYou’ve Never Seen Luxury Like This On A Cruise Ship. Search Luxury Mediterranean CruisesYahoo SearchUndo Pensioner dies after crash on Paphos-Polis roadUndoCruise passenger airlifted to Paphos hospitalUndoRemand for pair in alleged property fraud (Updated)Undoby Taboolaby Taboola
The EU must act decisively over Turkey’s latest provocations in Cyprus’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ), the EU’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said on Monday, according to Cyprus News Agency sources.Foreign minister Nikos Christodoulides was in Brussels attending the Foreign Affairs Council, briefing his EU counterparts on Turkey’s actions in Cyprus’ EEZ. On the sidelines Christodoulides had a series of one-on-one meetings with other EU foreign ministers.But an unfazed Ankara amplified its rhetoric by hinting that a second drillship would be despatched to waters around Cyprus.At the gathering in Brussels, EU ministers also seemed more preoccupied with the situation in Libya, as well as the Iran nuclear deal.“The situation requires collective action on the part of the union, the basis of the provisions of the EU treaties and the joint statements of the union on this subject,” diplomatic sources said Christodoulides had told his counterparts.He said that the messages sent by the EU and its partners in a spirit of solidarity do not seem to have been heard by Turkey, he said. Instead Ankara continued its provocative actions just weeks before the publication of progress on its EU accession course and in violation of the commitments it has made towards the EU.Nicosia found support in France, Greece and other countries as well as Mogherini, who said that she was speaking on behalf of all and stressed that “this time we must act with determination,” the sources said.Christodoulides said after the meeting that Mogherini expressed the EU’s concern about Turkey’s actions and called on Turkey to show restraint, to respect the sovereign rights of Cyprus in its EEZ and to abstain from any such illegal action.“She said the EU will respond in an appropriate manner and in full solidarity with Cyprus,” Christodoulides said.This, he said, was something that was stressed as the foreign ministers’ clear position in full solidarity with Cyprus.Full announcements regarding the EU’s stance – or measures – relating to Turkey’s incursions into Cypriot maritime zones will be left to the next formal European Council summit, to be held in early June.“In the interim, the government is working diplomatically to lay the groundwork for the EU’s response,” the same sources said.Christodoulides had a meeting on the sidelines of the Foreign Affairs Council with EU Commissioner on enlargement and neighbourhood policy, Johannes Hahn who said he shares Cyprus’ grave concern over Turkey’s drilling plans within the Republic’ EEZ.He reiterated that “the European Council has strongly condemned such actions in the Eastern Mediterranean” and warned that “this position holds.” He also called on Turkey for restraint and respect of the member states’ sovereign rights.On the status of the Turkish drillship, the Fatih, the sources said the vessel remains stationary at the same position, west of Paphos.There was no information on whether the rig had begun actual drilling.“But we are operating on the assumption that the Fatih does have the wherewithal to drill.”The government meanwhile is still gathering data on the individuals and companies involved with the three ships supporting the Fatih, with a view to applying for international arrest warrants.Meantime Turkey’s energy minister Fatih Donmez announced that their second drillship, the Yavuz, would “soon” be undertaking drilling operations in the eastern Mediterranean.This will occur once the Yavuz is outfitted with the necessary equipment, Donmez told Milliyet newspaper.For this year, he added, Turkey plans two drills in shallow waters, and three to four drills in deep waters.Commenting on the Greek Cypriot reaction, the Turkish minister reiterated that the Turkish Cypriots have ‘rights’ on certain parts of the EEZ declared by Cyprus.Donmez spoke of efforts to exclude Turkey from the “eastern Mediterranean equation”, alluding to hydrocarbons resources.“Any formula which leaves Turkey out of this equation is wishful thinking. We have long stated that we would be conducting our own explorations.”Turkey’s finance minister Berat Albayrak made similar remarks speaking to CNN Turk.“The Fatih is already mobilised, and in coming days our second drillship, the Yavuz, will also be mobilized.“Based on scientific realities, I can clearly state that in Turkey by 2020 we shall be hearing very pleasant news about oil and natural gas, especially relating to explorations at sea and on land. I want our 82 million citizens to know this.”Turkey is laying claim to parts of various blocks in Cyprus’ EEZ saying the areas in question form part of its continental shelf. The claim includes part of Blocks 1, 4, 5, 6 and 7.Turkish Cypriots signed a ‘Continental Shelf Delimitation Agreement’ with Turkey in September 2011. This ‘agreement’ states that it has been signed in line with international law and with respect to the principle of equity, though the ‘TRNC’ is not recognised internationally. It is on this basis that Turkish Cypriots declared an ‘EEZ’ which in effect claims that half of Cyprus’ EEZ belongs to them, including blocks 1,2,3,8,9,12 and 13.Asked about Turkey’s second drillship being sent to the Cypriot EEZ, the government sources told the Mail that, although no scenario can be ruled out, it is possible Turkey is playing psychological warfare games with Nicosia.“Maybe that’s what they want us to think, to keep us on edge.” You May LikeCalifornia Earthquake AuthorityReassurance for your refugeCalifornia Earthquake AuthorityUndoLivestlyChip And Joanna’s $18M Mansion Is Perfect, But It’s The Backyard Everyone Is Talking AboutLivestlyUndoPopularEverythingColorado Mom Adopted Two Children, Months Later She Learned Who They Really ArePopularEverythingUndo Our View: Argaka mukhtar should not act as if he owns the beachUndoA grotesque choice of prime minister for Britain?UndoTales from the Coffeeshop: Lies, lies and holy revelationsUndoby Taboolaby Taboola
State Rep. Triston Cole will keep in touch with 105th House District residents during local monthly office hours served up as “Coffee with Cole.”“I’m excited to get to work for the people of the 105th District and Northern Michigan,” said Cole, R-Mancelona. “Listening to residents’ thoughts and concerns about state government will help me represent our area in Lansing.”On Friday, Feb. 13, Cole will be at Java Jones, 131 River St, in Elk Rapids, from 9 to 10 a.m.The Coffee with Cole office hours will have rotating locations and times scheduled throughout the year to provide residents of Antrim, Charlevoix, Otsego, Montmorency and Oscoda counties various opportunities to share ideas, concerns and issues regarding Michigan’s state agencies or legislation with Cole in person.Those unable to attend a Coffee with Cole office hours meeting can contact the representative by email at TristonCole@house.mi.gov or by calling 1-(855)-DIST-105. Categories: News Tags: #SB 06Feb ‘Coffee with Cole’ keeps residents informed #####
29Mar Rep. Sheppard’s potable water bill approved by committee Categories: Sheppard News The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure recently approved legislation introduced by state Rep. Jason Sheppard to exempt trucks that deliver potable water from seasonal weight restrictions on Michigan roads.“A number of residents in our district have water delivered to their homes due to high sulfur content in their wells, or because their wells have dried up,” said Rep. Sheppard, R-Temperance. “When seasonal weight restrictions are in place, residents have to pay for trucks to make multiple deliveries, leading to higher costs by requiring a fee for each delivery. In addition, more traffic on the roads causes more wear and tear.”If approved, House Bill 4695 will exempt bulk potable water deliveries from seasonal load restrictions, as long as the vehicle making the delivery does not exceed 35 mph on any seasonally restricted road.“This bill helps keep deliveries more affordable and helps to minimize the wear and tear on the roads, which, as we know, can be costly,” Rep. Sheppard said. “Constituents brought this issue to my attention, and I am pleased to be able to work on this common sense legislation.”HB 4695 now heads to the full House for consideration.###
State Rep. Jim Tedder of Clarkston invites residents to join him for local office hours during the month of January.“Monthly office hours are a great way to meet residents and discuss important issues,” Rep. Tedder said. “Listening to the concerns of people in our communities is one of my top priorities as a state representative.”Office hours take place at the following times and locations:• Friday, Jan. 12 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Mr. B’s Roadhouse, 6761 Dixie Highway in Clarkston; and• Monday, Jan. 15 from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at Great Lakes Family Restaurant, 5834 Highland Road in Waterford.No appointment is necessary. Those unable to attend may contact Rep. Tedder at 517-373-0615 or via email at JimTedder@house.mi.gov. 08Jan Rep. Tedder hosts January office hours Categories: Tedder News
ShareTweetShareEmail0 SharesJanuary 9, 2015; Al JazeeraThe new mayor of Newark, New Jersey, Ras Baraka, was elected as a political progressive, an ostensible advocate for the city’s poor after the administration of Cory Booker, who was seen as strongly oriented toward downtown development. As a progressive, Baraka now has to explain why he quadrupled the fee that the Newark Municipal Court charges low-income defendants for the assistance of a public defender.Essentially, Baraka is adopting an increasingly popular means of funding public services—charging the users of public services higher and higher “user fees.” The new fee for criminal defendants is going to be $200, up from $50. Office of the Public Defender attorney Anthony Cowell pointed out that most of the clients he represents don’t have $200 to pay as a fee. “It’s been said it’s a revenue-generator, but you’re charging people who absolutely can’t afford it,” Cowell said. “They’re homeless, they’re mentally ill, they’re in shelters…”This new policy, along with a host of new fees being charged in the New Jersey Superior Court system, puts Newark and the state of New Jersey into the company of Alabama, Mississippi, Missouri, and Texas, which Al Jazeera’s E. Tammy Kim writes have been using “‘cash register’ courts more focused on padding local budgets than carrying out judicial functions.” As Kim correctly noted, this was the situation in St. Louis County, Missouri, where 40 percent of local government revenues come from fines for traffic tickets and petty crime.Baraka’s office emailed Al Jazeera that the fee wouldn’t be a problem because municipal court judges have the authority to reduce or even waive the fee. However, a municipal court staff person who declined to be identified said that “most judges do not bother making decisions about the application fee.” In practice, the municipal court user fee gets lost in the “bureaucratic shuffle,” but relying on bureaucratic incompetence as an out for people who would be otherwise be hit with the fee is haphazard and inadequate public policy making.Put this into a broader context. The law of the land regarding legal representation emanates from the Gideon v. Wainwright decision of 1963, in which states were required, per the U.S. Constitution, to provide legal representation to criminal defendants who couldn’t afford to hire lawyers for themselves. States like New Jersey found ways of limiting where and when it would provide public defenders and charged the initially small user fee despite the nomenclature that public defenders were “free.” Charging criminal defendants $200 makes the notion of “free” public defenders for indigent defendants sadly laughable. In some states, defendants face not only user fees for attorneys, but payments for fines, court costs, and even probation services.In 2012, Louisiana was charging $35 to indigent criminal defendants who were later convicted and was threatening to raise the fee levels. The Brennan Center for Justice concluded that the Louisiana fee structure “creates a system that undermines the Constitutional right to conflict-free counsel by forcing attorneys to rely on their clients’ convictions for much needed funding…[and] acts as an illogical tax on indigent defendants.”Louisiana is hardly alone; the Brennan Center found that “of the 15 states with the largest prison populations, 13 allow low-income defendants to be charged fees for exercising their right to counsel.” But Newark, on its own, under the guidance of its new, progressive mayor, is moving the “Brick City” into the unwanted echelon of governments that through user fees are taxing the poorest of the poor.—Rick CohenShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
Share17TweetShareEmail17 SharesFight for $15 on 4/15/2015 by The All-Nite ImagesAugust 27, 2015; New York TimesThe Fight for $15 movement began in 2012, as airport workers with wages of $20 an hour plus benefits tried to form a union. Instead, their jobs were reconfigured into minimum wage opportunities literally overnight. Since that time, the national minimum wage has remained at $7.25, and union membership has continued to decline, reaching 11.1 percent of workers in 2014. But on the local level, Fight for $15 has successfully advocated for minimum wage increases in twenty-nine states plus many large municipalities. Additionally, in the last two weeks, two court decisions were published expanding workers right to organize and increasing the jurisdiction of a regulation designed to require employers to pay workers more of a living wage.Last week, The National Labor Relations Board announced a ruling in favor of unions negotiating on behalf of low-wage workers. The much-anticipated decision will allow workers at franchises (such as McDonald’s) or employed at subcontractors connected to larger employers to negotiate together with workers of other franchises or directly with the large employer. By creating an opportunity for low-wage workers to bargain collectively, the worker gains power and unions can coalesce.The ruling stems from a dispute between a garbage disposal and recycling company, California-based Browning-Ferris, and its subcontractor, which employed workers to staff the recycling center. Browning-Ferris maintained the right to set criteria for hiring and firing as well as dictating the amount workers would be compensated. At the time of the dispute, workers were voting on whether to unionize. The NLRB panel ruled that since Browning-Ferris “maintained control of the workplace,” the workers were joint employees of the subcontractor and Browning-Ferris. Therefore, Browning-Ferris could not insulate itself from the legal responsibilities it had to the workers by creating a subcontractor employer. By acknowledging this relationship, the Board allows workers to sue the corporation, which has more resources, rather than a subcontractor that often has less.Through this decision, the Board modified the employer-employee relationship developed in the Reagan era of the 1980s. In the past, a company had a relationship with a worker only if it had “direct and immediate” control over the working environment. Now, the parent company has a responsibility to the worker even it if only requires the subcontractor to use certain software that limits the number of hours or length of a workers’ shift, or maintains the right to control such workplace conditions but does not exercise them. An appeal is expected, but although a win might only apply to a particular franchisee or division, it would increase the leverage of workers at other locations.The ruling follows a decision by the Washington State Supreme Court the week before in favor of workers at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, located in the small community of SeaTac. In 2013, unions and nonprofits fought successfully for Proposition #1, making SeaTac the first city in America to require employers to pay workers a minimum of $15 an hour. Airlines and their contractors argued the proposition does not apply to the international airport, since it is under the jurisdiction of the Port of Seattle rather than the city. The Court majority ruled that the Port of Seattle only maintains control of airport operation, and as long as Proposition #1 does not “interfere” with operations, it is enforceable.The Fight for $15 began during the Great Recession and quickly expanded through a series of strikes by fast-food workers frustrated by the growth in low-wage employment and the increase in the cost of living in many cities. Many outside of the movement often incorrectly stereotype the minimum wage worker. Currently, 56 percent of workers earning the minimum wage are women and 53 percent are white. Additionally, 53 percent of these workers have their high school diploma and only 33 percent are under the age of 25. With the latest court decisions, union membership may grow, further expanding the movement’s power.—Gayle NelsonShare17TweetShareEmail17 Shares
Share234Tweet5Share76Email315 SharesHyde Park Co-op / Quinn DombrowskiMarch 26, 2016; Waco Tribune and NPRIn the United States, 2.3 million people live in food deserts—places without access to grocery stores offering fresh fruits and vegetables at reasonable prices. Across the country, grocery stores serving rural and low-income areas are struggling and many are dying. As the large chains leave, residents are banding together to explore new methods of maintaining their neighborhood stores, including membership, connecting to other nonprofit or business services, and crowdfunding.In Waco, Texas, Mission Waco has raised thirty-eight percent of the funds it needs to convert a vacant 6,500 square-foot building into a vibrant “Jubilee Food Market.” Its goal is to raise $488,000 to transform the eyesore into a community asset. Many years ago, the building was home to a Safeway, but the grocery store has long abandoned the community. Now, the nonprofit is looking to donors from as far away as Maine to rebuild this essential resource.Jubilee Food Market supporters purchase shares of stock for as little as $25, although larger investment options are welcome. Mission Waco’s project budget consists of 4000 $25 stock shares for remodeling, 10,000 shares to operate the store for the first year, and 5525 shares for the ECSIA Hydroponics Greenhouse. Shareholders receive quarterly reports on the store’s status and the opportunity to participate in the shareholders’ meeting. All donors and residents of the 76707 ZIP code receive an Oasis Club Card entitling them to discounts on store purchases. The store is scheduled to open in September 2016.Mission Waco chose to open a grocery store after surveying residents and learning the overwhelming majority wanted a supermarket. The organization’s mission is to provide Christian-based holistic programs that empower the community’s low income. The organization also operates a World Cup Café and Fair Trade Market, Jubilee Theatre, and Urban Edibles food trailer.In Bowdon, North Dakota, residents are also at work. They came together to continue the operation of their grocery store after the store’s owner died and no other owners came forward. The next closest grocery store is eighteen miles away.Run as a membership store similar to Costco and Sam’s Club, the effort is working but the margin is tight. They recently opened a thrift store and bakery nearby to increase business. The tiny town surrounded by fields of soybeans, wheat, and corn lost its community school years ago. Without the grocery store, the town would disappear from the map.The loss of community grocery stores and its effects on rural America led to six federal agencies creating an $800,000 Obama administration initiative, “Local Foods, Local Places,” to support programs to create community owned grocery stores and farmers’ markets. Twenty-seven communities were selected from over 300 applications. Each community will work with a team of experts to recognize local asset and opportunities, set revitalization goals, and develop an implementation plan using these resources.Throughout the United States mega-grocery stores are abandoning their rural and low-income urban communities for wealthy city edges and suburbs. Without these businesses, residents lose access to fruits and vegetables and gain more processed fast food outlets and convenience stores full of fat, cholesterol, and sugar. This phenomenon is contributing to the obesity epidemic and leading to an increase in heart disease and other diseases associated with this condition.Food is Power, a California nonprofit “seeking to create a more just and sustainable world by recognizing the power of one’s food choices,” found that wealthy areas have three times as many supermarkets as poor ones. And the disparity is even more pronounced when comparing racial makeup: White neighborhoods have four times as many grocery stores as African American communities, and the stores in African American communities are smaller with a more limited selection. Overall, according to the Economic Research Service of the US Department of Agriculture, 2.2 percent of all households do not own a car and live more than a mile from a supermarket.Although creating and running a community-owned grocery store is a challenge, Willow Lake, South Dakota’s Lake Grocery has been a beacon for the community for over five years. Operated by Willow Lake Area Advancement, the store employs a full-time manager and two part-time employees in addition to volunteers. Although the organization described the project as a leap of faith, it has worked out well for the community and the nonprofit.—Gayle NelsonShare234Tweet5Share76Email315 Shares
Share9TweetShareEmail9 SharesDecember 6, 2016; Minnesota Public Radio Enforcement of the regulation popularly called the “Mexico City Policy” has vacillated since President Ronald Reagan instated it in 1984. The rule specifically prohibits international charities from promoting abortion as a method of family planning even if that “promotion” simply entails a physician engaging in a conversation about the option of abortion with a patient. Subsequent presidents have gone back and forth on the policy’s status, but with the impending inauguration of President-elect Trump, reproductive rights activists are gearing up for an attack on domestic and international abortion care, including the potential for the restoration—once again—of this global regulation on reproductive rights.A common misconception of the policy is that depending on the president’s political leaning at the time, it either bans or allows foreign aid to fund abortions in developing countries. That particular rule, known as the Helms Amendment, was adopted by Congress in 1973 and has been in effect ever since. It does not play a part in the Mexico City Policy. What the Mexico City policy does factor in, however, is the expectation, first implemented in 1984 and last rescinded in 2009, that groups overseas in receipt of federal funds “agree as a condition [of their funding to] neither perform nor actively promote abortion as a method of family planning” even if they do so with their own funds or non-U.S. funds. Its critics have dubbed this expectation, the “Global Gag Rule.”The consequence of restricting the discussion of abortion between providers and patients is significant. In the foreign nations where the rule will likely yet again be imposed during a Trump administration, family planning is a critical component of the range of health services offered. While the rule does allow for exceptions in cases of rape, incest, and saving the life of the mother, it dismisses the physical and mental health conditions of any woman who may want to consider abortion in her menu of family planning choices. According to abortion rights leaders, it is nothing short of a threat against women’s health and reproductive freedom across the globe.The Mexico City Policy, a decision historically left solely to the Executive Branch rather than a vote in Congress, has endured a game of political Ping-Pong for more than 30 years now, causing disruptions in the long-range operational planning and provision of care to clients for the international organizations that are severely impacted by the seesawing decisions of the U.S. government. The Global Gag Rule is “un-American in the most basic way,” as Wendy Turnbull, Senior Advisor for International Advocacy at PAI, explains. “[It] interferes with free speech, democracy, and access to services.”President-elect Trump’s cabinet nominations, policy stances, and overall demeanor as he makes his way to the White House have increasingly invoked a call for civil action. The executive decisions he will inevitably make with regard to reproductive rights in particular, including the Mexico City Policy, do not beg the question of “will he or won’t he” but rather how we, as a people and sector, will respond when he does.—Lindsay WalkerShare9TweetShareEmail9 Shares
Satellite operator Eutelsat has categorically denied reports that it is interfering with its own satellite transmissions in order to prevent reception in Iran of international Farsi-language channels.Eutelsat said the reports, suggesting the operator was acceding to Iranian pressure, were in total contradiction with reality and inconsistent with a statement from the BBC in September associating Eutelsat with its appeal for action by regulatory authorities to combat the problem.The company said it had located the source of the jamming – which affects channels including BBC Persian, Voice of America and Deutsche Welle – from within Iran and had, for the last two years, filed multiple complaints with the relevant French and international regulatory authorities to denounce hostile jamming operations and to prompt the ITU to address this illegal practice as a priority issue.
French pay TV operator Canal Plus is to close its 3D channel. The service, which carried movies, sports and event programming, launched in mid-2010, but only reached an estimated 12,000 homes.The pay TV operator told local press that it intends to resurrect its 3D service when there is sufficient consumer demand and is evaluating different programming options and formats. The current channel will close on January 24.Even viewers with 3D sets are only watching 3D for a few minutes before switching to a 2D broadcast, explained René Saal, Canal Plus managing director. The pay TV company will focus efforts on its HD offering until there is wider interest in 3D.
Modern Times Group has acquired the television rights to the English Premier League in Sweden and Denmark. The pan-regional European broadcaster has acquired the rights from the English football body starting from the 2013/14 season. All of the rights are exclusive on all platforms in Sweden. The rights to approximately 280 of the matches are exclusive on all platforms in Denmark, while the rights to approximately 100 matches are non-exclusive. The games will be shown in Sweden on the Viasat premium pay TV sports channels, while in Denmark, the games will be available via free-to-air channel TV3.Modern Times Group already holds the broadcasting rights to the English Premier League in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Bulgaria.Hans-Holger Albrecht, president and CEO of MTG, said: “The Barclays Premier League is the most popular domestic club football competition in the world and has a huge fan base in Scandinavia. We are therefore delighted to have both prolonged our exclusive TV rights in Sweden and now secured an enhanced rights package in Denmark. We will continue to provide viewers with premium coverage of matches for the next three years in SD, HD and 3D, and on as many platforms and devices as possible. High quality delivery of the best entertainment content on an ‘anytime anywhere’ basis is what Viasat is all about.”
French broadcasters TF1 and M6 have filed an appeal against the competition authority’s approval of Canal Plus’s acquisition of free-to-air channels Direct 8 and Direct Star with the country’s Conseil d’État.According to a report by Le Point, the two commercial broadcasters are arguing that the competition regulator did not place sufficiently strong conditions on Canal Plus ahead of granting approval of the deal.