djlnalag

Spain Pressures EU to Support Morocco on Migration

Rabat – The EU might favorably answer Morocco’s call for support as the Spanish government is pressuring the EU to meet Morocco’s demands.Spanish news outlet El Pais reported today that Spain has repeatedly expressed Morocco’s migration concerns to the EU.The news outlet added that the EU “is preparing an imminent response” as Spain’s sense of urgency has been “sharpened.” The heavy migratory challenges have “exhausted” Morocco and Spain’s patience.Read Also: EU Commission Wants More Security Cooperation with Morocco Against Undocumented ImmigrationContacted by El Pais, diplomatic sources did not unveil the funds the EU will give to Morocco. “But they estimate that they surpass the almost 30 million” already committed to meet Morocco’s demands for equipment.El Pais quoted a government source saying, “Morocco is asserting its status as a responsible partner, but considers that the response to the migration phenomenon should be based on the principle of shared responsibility.” In August, the EU commission president responded to Spain’s request to provide Morocco with resources to curb migration.Jean-Claude Juncker said that both “Spain and Morocco can be assured of the full support of the EU commission in effectively responding to the increasing migratory pressure along the Western Mediterranean route.”Read Also: EU Backs Morocco’s Request for Migration Funding, But Resources Are LimitedIn July, the Spanish prime minister, Pedro Sanchez, asked the EU to provide Morocco with “emergency assistance to tackle the migration issue.”The president of the EU commission acknowledged that the situation requires additional funding.Migration mafias continue to develop irregular strategiesBesides go-fast boats, migration networks are developing strategies for migration and human trafficking.Some traffic migrants through family cars driving from Morocco to the Spanish enclave of Melilla.Akhbar Al Yaoum newspaper reported on October 8 that Spanish authorities unveiled the existence of a human trafficking network that could traffic 200 Moroccans through family cars to allude Spanish and Moroccan security forces.Read Also: Migration ‘Mafias’ Challenge Government with Free Rides to EuropeThe newspaper added that the network trafficked 44 undocumented migrants by car in the last three months.Moroccan police allegedly arrested three Moroccans involved in the network. Akhbar Al Yaoum reported that the three suspects charge MAD 45,000 for each migrant. The paper added that most of the “victims” of the migration networks are from sub-Saharan Africa.The network allegedly has 52 members. Moroccan police arrested only 9 members and seized 40 cars. read more

Read More

Lauren Bush and UN food agency launch new initiative to help schoolchildren

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and its Honorary Spokesperson Lauren Bush today launched a new initiative aimed at helping feed poor schoolchildren around the world while creating greater awareness of global hunger.The scheme involves sales of “FEED Bag,” a “stylish but sturdy tote bag designed byLauren Bush,” the agency said in a press release.Available on www.amazon.com/feed, proceeds from each sale will feed a child at school for an entire academic year. Ms. Bush created the FEED Bag after visiting a number of WFP operations in Africa, Asia and Latin America during her three years as a WFP Honorary Spokesperson. Sold through for $59.95, the reversible burlap/natural muslin bag was inspired by WFP bags which carry grain, often for life-saving operations. The bag’s burlap side is stamped “FEED the Children of the World” and a “1,” signifying that the proceeds will feed one child at school for one year. Research has shown that school meals can increase class attendance by 100 per cent and improve performance significantly, said WFP, pointing out that for many children, the lunchtime meal may be the only one they will receive all day. In 2005, the agency fed 21.7 million children in 74 countries. 2 April 2007The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and its Honorary Spokesperson Lauren Bush today launched a new initiative aimed at helping feed poor schoolchildren around the world while creating greater awareness of global hunger. read more

Read More

Annan says nuclear talks with Iran started well and seem to be

“I think we’ve all been monitoring very closely the negotiations on the Iranian nuclear issue. I’m pleased that it seems to be moving forward, and Mr. (Javier) Solana had very good discussions in Tehran,” the Secretary-General told reporters, referring to the EU’s foreign policy chief.“And I think we are off to a reasonably good start. And I am hopeful that this time it will lead to serious negotiations where all the parties will find themselves at the table.” Last Thursday, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) – the UN atomic watchdog – again called on Iran to suspend uranium enrichment-related and reprocessing activities, the condition set by the United States for joining in the discussions with the Islamic Republic aimed at ensuring its nuclear programme is solely for peaceful purposes.Earlier this year, the IAEA referred the issue to the Security Council, which can impose sanctions, after its Director-General, Mohammed ElBaradei, reported that although the Agency had not seen any diversion of material to nuclear weapons or other explosive devices, it was still not able to conclude that there were no undeclared Iranian nuclear materials or activities.Iran says its activities are solely for energy purposes but the United States and other countries insist it is clandestinely seeking to produce nuclear weapons. Last August, Iran rescinded its voluntary suspension of nuclear fuel conversion, which can produce the enriched uranium necessary either for nuclear power generation or for nuclear weapons. read more

Read More

Oil rises near US92 as polls suggest proausterity parties may win Greek

Oil rises near US$92 as polls suggest pro-austerity parties may win Greek vote AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email by News Staff Posted May 28, 2012 8:19 am MDT Oil rose to near US$92 a barrel Monday as Greek polls suggested pro-austerity parties might win elections next month, raising the likelihood the country will stay in the euro common currency.By early afternoon in Europe, benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude for July delivery was up 97 cents to US$91.83 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 20 cents to settle at $90.86 in New York on Friday.In London, Brent crude for July delivery was up 96 cents at US$107.79 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange.Opinion polls published Sunday indicated two parties that favour implementing Greece’s bailout programs may be able to form a coalition government. Greek politicians were unable to form a government after an election earlier this month, requiring new elections in June.Crude has dropped from US$106 the first week of May amid fears a chaotic Greek exit from the euro would deepen economic malaise and weaken crude demand in Europe.Easing tensions over Iran’s nuclear program amid talks between Iran and six world powers have also helped lower oil prices, but analysts warned that it is too early to dismiss the risk factors on that front.Iran and the international powers “remain as far apart as ever,” according to energy consultants KBC in London. “So the situation remains clouded and the negotiators’ position a tricky one. Inevitably the issue will run right down to the wire.”Some analysts expect oil will linger near current prices until after the Greek vote, OPEC’s quarterly meeting and the next round of Iran nuclear discussions in mid-June.“Both European debt and Iranian nuclear issues are on something of a hold for another month,” Barclays said in a report. “We would not expect the oil market to gain much of a sustained sense of direction” before those events.Markets are in the U.S. were closed Monday for the Memorial Day holiday.In other energy trading, heating oil was up 1.53 cents at US$2.8482 a U.S. gallon (3.79 litres) and gasoline futures added 2.39 cents to US$2.8556 per gallon. Natural gas fell 7.1 cents to US$2.556 per 1,000 cubic feet.(TSX:ECA), (TSX:IMO), (TSX:SU), (TSX:HSE), (NYSE:BP), (NYSE:COP), (NYSE:XOM), (NYSE:CVX), (TSX:CNQ), (TSX:TLM), (TSX:COS.UN), (TSX:CVE) read more

Read More

Jean Coutu Group sells 725M shares in Rite Aid pharmacy chain for

AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email LONGUEUIL, Que. – Jean Coutu Group (TSX:PJC.A) has sold off a large share of its stock in the U.S.-based pharmacy chain Rite Aid for US$158.5 million.The Montreal company said Tuesday it has shed 72.5 million common shares for an average price of US$2.20 per share.Following the sale, the pharmacy retailer will still own 178.4 million shares in Rite Aid which represents 11.7 per cent of the company.Jean Coutu will book a gain of $49.7 million in its net profit in the first quarter of 2014.Before the announcement, shares of Jean Coutu gained 14 cents to close at $15.74 on the Toronto Stock Exchange. by The Canadian Press Posted Apr 16, 2013 5:43 pm MDT Jean Coutu Group sells 72.5M shares in Rite Aid pharmacy chain for $158.5M read more

Read More

Norway is killing FM radio against the wishes of most listeners

first_img NORWAY BECAME THE the first country in the world to start shutting down its FM radio network in favour of digital radio this week – a bold move that will be watched closely by other countries around Europe.Supporters of Digital Audio Broadcasting say DAB offers better sound quality and more channels at an eighth of the cost of FM (frequency modulation) transmission, which was first launched in the US in 1945.The authorities also say DAB offers better coverage, allows listeners to catch up on programmes they have missed and makes it easier to broadcast emergency messages in times of crisis.“The big difference and the main reason behind this big technological shift is that we want to offer a better radio service to the whole population,” said Ole Jorgen Torvmark, of Digitalradio Norge, a company part-owned by public broadcaster NRK.Norway, generally a technology-friendly country, has been preparing for the switchover for years – DAB and FM have existed side-by-side since 1995.There are currently 22 national digital stations, along with around 20 smaller ones. The FM spectrum has room for a maximum of only five national stations.The big switch-off began in Nordland, in the country’s north, on Wednesday and will be expanded to the rest of the country by the end of the year, making millions of old radios obsolete.‘It’s too expensive’ But many think the shift is premature.A poll in Dagbladet newspaper in December found 66% of Norwegians are against shutting down FM, with only 17% in favour.While around three quarters of the population have at least one DAB radio set, many motorists are unhappy, as only about a third of cars currently on the road are equipped.Converting a car radio involves buying an adaptor for between 1,000 and 2,000 kroner (€110 to €220), or getting a whole new radio.“It’s completely stupid, I don’t need any more channels than I’ve already got,” Eivind Sethov, 76, told AFP in Oslo. It’s far too expensive. I’m going to wait till the price of adaptors comes down before getting one for my car. Short URL 98-year-old Judith Haaland sits next to her decades-old radio set in Stavanger, Norway. Image: AP/Press Association Images 17,227 Views https://jrnl.ie/3183871 Source: euronews (in English)/YouTubeSo while the switch to digital will reduce the cost of transmission for broadcasters, it is listeners who will pick up much of the cost of the transition.But Torvmark insists the time is right.“It’s clear that when there’s a big technological change, some people ask difficult questions and are critical,” but “most listeners are ready,” he said.Every week more than 2.1 million listeners – half of the listeners – listen to stations that wouldn’t have existed without this technological transition.Part of the reason Norway is the first country to switch away from traditional analogue transmission is to do with topography – it is expensive to get FM signals to a small population scattered around a landscape riven with fjords and high mountains.Closely watched The process will be watched closely in Europe by Switzerland, Denmark and Britain, where listeners have taken strongly to digital radio and which all plan plan to shut down FM radio broadcasts at some point in the future.The UK has not set a date but has said it will switch off the FM signal when 50% of all radio listening is digital – the figure is currently over 35% – and when the DAB signal reaches 90% of the population.There are no plans to phase out FM radio in Ireland, although legislation passed in 2009 provides for the future development of digital services here. Streaming apps from RTÉ and commercial broadcasters also allow listeners around the country to access a wide range of local, national and specialist stations.“RTÉ operates a DAB service from five sites around the country and there is also a commercial trial DAB service undertaken by a company called DB Digital Broadcast,” a spokesperson for the Department of Communications said in a statement.The trials are being operated from Three Rock in Dublin, and in the Cork area.The statement added:While there are no plans at present to rollout DAB services on a national basis, the BAI will continue to monitor and consider the potential for the development of digital radio in Ireland.© – AFP 2017 with reporting from Daragh Brophy Read: Driverless cars – another step towards Big Brother? >Read: Meet Kirobo, Toyota’s new friendly robot that could cure your loneliness > Saturday 14 Jan 2017, 9:00 AM 98-year-old Judith Haaland sits next to her decades-old radio set in Stavanger, Norway. center_img 24 Comments Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Norway is killing FM radio – against the wishes of most listeners There are no plans to phase out FM radio in Ireland, the Department of Communications has said. Share Tweet Email1 By AFP Jan 14th 2017, 9:00 AM Image: AP/Press Association Imageslast_img read more

Read More

Scientists Reveal Worlds First 3DPrinted Heart

first_imgStay on target In Israel, scientists revealed what they claim is the world’s first 3D print of a heart with human tissues and vessels, stating that it’s a “major medical breakthrough” that might benefit transplants in the future.On Monday, journalists were shown the 3D print of a heart, which is roughly the size of a rabbit’s heart, at Tel Aviv University in Israel, AFP reported. The scientists, which published their findings in the journal Advanced Science, hope that this project will one day lead to other “hearts” that will be suitable enough for human heart transplants and advance the global medical field.VIDEO: Scientists in Israel unveil a 3D print of a rabbit-sized heart with human tissue and vessels, calling it a “first” and a “major medical breakthrough” that advances possibilities for transplants pic.twitter.com/Tu3N5DpypE— AFP news agency (@AFP) April 15, 2019Tal Dvir, a professor who led the project, told AFP that it marked “the first time anyone anywhere has successfully engineered and printed an entire heart replete with cells, blood vessels, ventricles, and chambers.” He added, “People have managed to 3D print the structure of a heart in the past, but not with cells or with blood vessels.”Professor Tal Dvir holds a 3D-printed heart made from human tissue in his laboratory in Tel Aviv University on April 15, 2019. (Photo Credit: Amir Levy/Getty Images)However, there are many challenges that need to be addressed before 3D-printed hearts become available for patient transplants: Scientists now have to teach each printed heart “to operate” like real hearts. The cells in the 3D print of a heart are able to contract, however, they’re not able to pump yet. Once this key issue is solved, the scientists plan to transplant the 3D prints of hearts into animal models first, possibly in about a year, Dvir told AFP.Regular heart transplants are also very complex: According to the World Health Organization, cardiovascular diseases kill 17.9 million people annually, and heart transplants are sometimes the only treatments available for very serious cases. However, there are a limited number of donors worldwide, plus bodies can also reject the heart transplant, which is a dilemma that scientists hope to overcome with their ongoing cardiovascular research.Tel Aviv University Scientists Print First 3D Heart Using Patient’s Own Cells. For the first time ever Israeli scientists have created a vascularized human heart that fully matches the properties of a human patient.This is a major breakthrough and great news for world medicine pic.twitter.com/bdtTLfpp0Q— Emmanuel Nahshon (@EmmanuelNahshon) April 15, 2019The team’s research required them to take a biopsy of fatty tissue from patients used in the creation of the “ink” for the 3D print of a heart. First, patient-specific cardiac patches were developed, followed by the entire 3D print. According to Dvir, using the patient’s own tissue was key, so the risk of an implant being rejected would be eliminated, BBC news noted.The next step? The scientists will have to figure out how to expand cells to have enough tissue to create a human-sized heart for transplants. Even though this might be challenging, the 3D print of a heart with human tissue and vessels is a start for advancing human heart transplants and cardiovascular patient treatment.More on Geek.com:First 3D-Printed Rib Implant a Success3D Model of Neanderthal Rib Cage Sheds Light on Ancient Human AnatomyFlorida Man Killed By Cassowary, the ‘World’s Most Dangerous Bird’ Watch: Dolphin Leaps Feet Away From Unsuspecting SurferNASA Says 2 Asteroids Will Safely Fly By Earth This Weekend last_img read more

Read More

Pochettino revealed his plans with Winks

first_imgHarry Winks renewed his old ankle injury back in November and he hasn’t fully recovered since then – but Mauricio Pochettino counts on him and the midfielder was handed a brand new 5-year deal.The Argentinian has previously insisted for a couple of times that the young player is a very important part of his squad and he will be given all the time that he needs to recover well and come back properly.The former Southampton coach spoke about Winks as he said, according to Football London:Jose Mourinho is sold on Lampard succeeding at Chelsea Tomás Pavel Ibarra Meda – September 14, 2019 Jose Mourinho wanted to give his two cents on Frank Lampard’s odds as the new Chelsea FC manager, he thinks he will succeed.There really…“It’s tough for him because he still doesn’t feel in the way he needs to feel.”“We’re trying to help him to feel perfect. It’s a little bit sad because he tries and we try to help. Of course, he’s not in his best mood. But sure that with the help of the whole coaching staff, we’re going to help him achieve again the same level, how he felt before the problem.”“It’s not only confidence, it’s because he feels something in his ankle that he cannot express himself in the way that he can.”last_img read more

Read More

Former Governor General Sir Orville Turnquest will visit Logos Book Store in

first_img Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, TCI, December 9, 2016 – Author and former Governor-General Sir Orville Turnquest will sign copies of his book “What Manner of Man is This? The Duke of Windsor’s Years in The Bahamas” from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Logo’s Bookstore in the Harbour Bay Shopping Centre on Friday. (Photo by Kovah Duncombe for DPA.)Former Governor-General Sir Orville Turnquest Will Visit Logos Book Store in Nassau on Friday to Sign Copies of ‘What Manner of Man Is This?’  Author Sir Orville Turnquest, who served as the fifth Governor-General of an independent Bahamas from 1995-2001, will sign copies of his book “What Manner of Man is This? The Duke of Windsor’s Years in The Bahamas” from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday at Logos Bookstore at Harbour Bay Shopping Plaza in Nassau.In a foreword, Sir Sidney Poitier calls the book “an unvarnished fresh look” at a crucial period in Bahamian history while the Rt. Hon. Hubert A. Ingraham calls the book “an insightful, informative piece, and an important addition to the literature of the development of The Bahamas.”Since its official launch at Government House on Monday, the book has already been selling out at local stores around New Providence. Copies are available in hardcover, paperback and on Amazon.com.last_img read more

Read More

STUDENT SPOTLIGHT 10 Wilmington Students Named To Deans List At Emmanuel College

first_imgBOSTON, MA — In honor of their outstanding academic achievement, Emmanuel College has named more than 700 students to the Dean’s List for the Spring 2019 semester.The following local students were awarded:Caroline BriereJulia BurkeJillian FinoTheodore MieleStephen O’BrienSamantha OnessimoJill RocheCarly SilvaTristyn SurprenantHeather TritesTo earn a spot on the Dean’s List, Emmanuel students must achieve a grade point average of 3.5 or higher for a 16-credit semester.About Emmanuel CollegeEmmanuel College is a co-educational, residential institution with a 17-acre campus in the heart of Boston’s educational, scientific, cultural and medical communities. Enrolling more than 2,200 undergraduate and graduate students, the College provides boundless opportunities for students to expand their worldview through rigorous coursework, significant internship and career opportunities throughout the Boston area and beyond, collaborations with distinguished and dedicated faculty, and participation in a dynamic campus community. Emmanuel’s more than 60 programs in the sciences, liberal arts, business, nursing, and education foster spirited discourse and substantive learning experiences that honor the College’s Catholic educational mission to educate the whole person and provide an ethical and relevant 21st-century education.(NOTE: The above announcement is from Emmanuel College via Merit.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedSTUDENT SPOTLIGHT: 3 Wilmington Students Named To Dean’s List At Regis CollegeIn “Education”STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: 3 Wilmington Students Named To Dean’s List At MCPHSIn “Education”STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: Wilmington’s Ferreira & Knibbs Named To Dean’s List At QuinnipiacIn “Education”last_img read more

Read More

Best sound bars under 200

first_img Read CNET’s review Vizio’s SB362 solo sound bar is great value for money Sarah Tew/CNET Sarah Tew/CNET Read CNET’s review Can you spend a bit more? For $300 not only will you get better sound, but a better assortment of features including a subwoofer as standard and a greater number of inputs. Some of them even have Alexa built in. Check out the gallery below for our picks. Best sound bars under $300 3 Read CNET’s review Tags Sarah Tew/CNET 18 Photos See at Walmart Now playing: Watch this: Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. Yamaha YAS-108 ($200) See at Walmart Speakers Bluetooth Vizio See at Amazon Sarah Tew/CNET The speakers built into your TV are terrible. You want better sound for movies and TV shows, and maybe something that can Bluetooth from your phone to play Spotify too. But you’re on a tight budget. Plenty of dirt-cheap options exist from no-name brands, and they probably sound better than your TV. But for just $100 and up, you can grab a bar that performed well in CNET’s hands-on tests. All three of the affordable sound bars on this list have Bluetooth (for wireless music streaming from your phone) and an optical connection (for hooking to a TV), plus a remote control. The Yamaha YAS-108 also includes HDMI, which makes connectivity even easier. And the subwoofer lends the Vizio SB3621n-e8 more authority and musicality — in other words, bass — making it our favorite overall.Disclaimer: CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page.  Share your voice Despite the lack of a subwoofer, the sleek Yamaha YAS-108 offers excellent sonic intelligibility and a great mix of features. The included HDMI ports, available on no other bar from this list, ensure optimum soundtrack compatibility with connected devices like Blu-ray players. If you have a bit more to spend, this Vizio is worth it. Thanks to the included wireless subwoofer, the SB3631 is an absolute movie machine, and it sounds impressive with music over Bluetooth as well. It’s our favorite budget soundbar, and earns our Editors’ Choice in the category. 1:52 If your budget is a Franklin and no more, the best option is this Vizio. With a larger-than-most cabinet the SB362An-F6 offers levels of bass that even the $200 Yamaha YAS-108 can’t touch. It doesn’t boast as many features as some of the bars below, but it does have Bluetooth. If you just want the best sound quality for the lowest price, this is it, but if you can spend a bit more, keep scrolling. Vizio SB3621n-e8 ($130) Vizio SB362An-F6 ($100) Commentslast_img read more

Read More

It is law of the ruler not rule of law

first_imgAmir Khosru Mahmud ChowdhuryBangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) leader Amir Khosru Mahmud Chowdhury on Monday alleged arrest warrants against BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia were a part of greater plot, saying there is no rule of law in the country.“There is no rule of law here. It is the law of the ruler. Whatever the ruler says is the law here.” said Khosru, a standing committee member of country’s principal opposition political party BNP, while addressing a discussion in the capital.A pro-BNP platform, Swadhinata Odhikar Andolan, organised the discussion, demanding withdrawal of arrest warrants against Khaleda, also a former prime minister.“What can we expect in Bangladesh? There is no specific framework of rules in the ruler’s law. The ruler will enact and enforce laws at convenience and if necessary, will amend the constitution too,” he noted.Amir Khosru alleged the current government is an “unelected one”.“An unelected government has changed the constitution to enact laws in its own interests and the laws have been passed in an unelected parliament. It is imposing anti-country laws on the people as well,” he alleged.Urging the ruling Bangladesh Awami League to pave the way for a fair election, the BNP leader said, “A country cannot run in this fashion. The people of a country should not face such dangers at every step. So, I will urge the government to return to the path of democracy and to hand over the ownership of the country to its people through a neutral election.”The BNP leader alleged that the issuance of warrants for the arrest of BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia in two graft cases was a part of the government’s evil design.UNB adds: He said the government is trying to establish its full control on the judiciary to perpetuate its power.Khasru said the government forced chief justice Surendra K Sinha to quit as he tried to establish justice and uphold the independence of the judiciary.last_img read more

Read More

Texas Teachers Health Care Explained State Program Was Created To Save Districts

first_imgJacob Villanueva/iStock/Via The Texas TribuneToday’s Texplainer question was inspired by reader Jason Johnson.Hey, Texplainer: Are all school districts covered by the state’s health care plan for teachers? Do any other options for health care exist?In 2002, Texas created a health care plan designed to help small districts provide affordable health coverage for their employees. Since then, most school districts — big and small — signed up. According to the latest enrollment numbers, nearly 90 percent of Texas school districts participate in the program, known as TRS-ActiveCare.But in recent years, frustration has grown with the state’s support of the program, and a few larger districts have lobbied to leave. State law currently doesn’t allow that, however, and bills designed to give the districts permission to depart have failed in the Texas Legislature.One key complaint: The state hasn’t kept up with the rising costs of health care. Since 2002, the state’s $75 per employee per month contribution for teacher health care has remained flat. Meanwhile, employees’ shares of premiums have more than doubled.Larger school districts had the negotiating power to get a good deal with a private insurer, so they weren’t required to join TRS-ActiveCare in 2002. Some large districts, like Dallas ISD, decided ActiveCare rates were better than what they could get locally. Other large districts, including Austin ISD and Houston ISD, still provide health insurance locally.Districts are banned from backing out once they’ve joined the plan to avoid a problem known as adverse selection, said Ann Fickel, associate executive director at the Texas Classroom Teachers Association.“If they have the freedom to jump and in out, only the sickest, most expensive districts are going to join the TRS plan when it’s to their benefit,” Fickel said. “And that’s not to the benefit of the plan.”That has frustrated some districts. El Paso ISD opted into the state’s health insurance program in 2011. Melissa Martinez, the district’s executive director of community engagement, said the administration formed two committees to look into joining TRS-ActiveCare, and both recommended against it. But some board members argued that school districts shouldn’t be in the insurance business and that TRS-ActiveCare would “remove that piece from our plate,” Martinez said.Since 2015, some El Paso school district employees and lawmakers have been asking the state to let them leave the program, Martinez said. Allowing districts to opt out of TRS-ActiveCare has been the subject of several bills, none of which have succeeded.In 2017, Texas state Rep. Lina Ortega, D-El Paso, sponsored a bill to let districts with more than 1,000 employees withdraw from TRS-ActiveCare. State Rep. J.M. Lozano, R-Kingsville, meanwhile, introduced legislation to let districts opt out regardless of their size. A fiscal analysis of that proposal found that it would likely increase school district employees’ premiums.El Paso ISD wants to leave TRS-ActiveCare because the cost of care has gone up and school districts and employees have to cover the difference, Martinez said. Health insurance rates are lower in El Paso, and the district has identified cheaper plans, Martinez said. The district currently pays $34 million per year for TRS-ActiveCare.“It really hinders us because if you’re in the traditional marketplace, if your plan goes up you start to shop around and see what your options are,” Martinez said. “We don’t have that option right now,” she said. “If it goes up, we can’t do anything about it.”But TRS Chief Health Care Officer Katrina Daniel said in an email that health care costs for teachers would go up if legislation passed allowing districts to opt out.“If legislation was passed to allow districts to opt out, districts with lower health care costs would likely opt out to seek low-cost options …” Daniel said. “Over time and as more lower-cost districts leave the plan, the plan would become increasingly unaffordable and therefore unsustainable.”Not everyone is unhappy with the plan. For some districts, especially smaller ones, TRS-ActiveCare has improved accessibility to care, said Amy Beneski, deputy executive director of governmental relations at the Texas Association of School Administrators.“There were many districts that couldn’t even get health care,” Beneski said. “Or if they could get health care for their employees, it was so exorbitant. One of the benefits of ActiveCare has been having a large pool of people and hoping that would spread some of the costs out among districts across the state.”Beneski said some problems districts have with the state’s coverage, like the rising cost of care, are also happening in the private market.“TRS-ActiveCare isn’t any different than any other insurance issues that are out there in that [it has] suffered from inflation,” she said.Cristela Rocha teaches 6th grade reading and writing at Del Valle ISD and has been covered by TRS-ActiveCare since 2013, when the district switched. She has some problems with TRS-ActiveCare — she pays more for health care under the plan and finds that providers have less knowledge about her plan, which has led to some expensive procedures not covered by her insurance.She said she feels more secure under TRS-ActiveCare, but thinks the state needs to increase its contribution.“I feel a little bit more safer because I know it’s not going to go anywhere — if we maintain it,” she said.The bottom line: The state’s health care plan for teachers was created to help districts provide affordable coverage. Some districts think they can get better deals elsewhere, but once a district has started using the state’s TRS-ActiveCare, it’s stuck. Legislative solutions haven’t been successful.Disclosure: The Texas Classroom Teachers Association has been a financial supporter of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune’s journalism. Find a complete list of them here. Sharelast_img read more

Read More

Even A Murderous Clone Doctor Needs His Companions

first_imgThe Ninth Doctor—a very angry reproduction, at least—returns this week in Sin Eaters: Part Two.Cavan Scott’s continuation of “Arkham Asylum in Space,” as Rose called it, takes readers into the darkest parts of the Time Lord’s mind.Still on the Hesguard “rehabilitation unit,” where the Doctor Patient 280 is being detained on multiple murder charges, Rose reunited with Tara, former nurse and Lieutenant in UNIT, and alleged murder victim.This isn’t any ol’ intergalactic jail, though. Hesguard employs the Bad Wolf Process, by which negative emotions are purged from a patient’s mind via so-called Sin-Eaters. Negative emotions are absorbed and dispersed; the weeding practice, according to Director Highsmith, ensures the subjects become incapable of experiencing anger, hatred, or fear.But the Doctor, an alien time-traveller, isn’t like everyone else.“My mind isn’t that easy to control,” he says. “All you’ve done is given my dark side a life of its own. You’ve given it free will.”While a Hulked-out version of the Ninth Doctor terrorizes the penitentiary, Rose and Tara discover the Sin-Eaters are free—they’re alive.After all, the Doctor, even a murderous clone of him, needs his companions.Sin Eaters: Part Two is on sale now for $3.99 in print and digital forms.Titan ComicsThe Twelfth Doctor, when not fighting Daleks and Emojibots, enlists his friend Hattie Munroe to help investigate mysterious goings-on at the seaside in 1979.But before the story continues, the Doctor’s mind is thrust back to a previous adventure in interlude “The Boy With the Displaced Smile.”When the TARDIS drops him in what can only be described as a lost episode of The Andy Griffith Show, the Doctor meets Penny & Co., hiding from what a “gibbering horde” of locals under the spell of a giant toothy grin in the sky.“From where I’m sitting, that looks like a serious failure of local law and order to me,” the Doctor says, antagonizing Deputy Decker.It seems, he explains, that the town of Sweet Haven is engulfed in a “reality storm”—created by a family of Saprophyte, reality-warping emo-parasites from the Oblivion Shallows.Can the Doctor and Penny save the day? Find out in “The Boy With the Displaced Smile,” written by James Peaty and illustrated by Warren Pleece, available now for $3.99 in print and digital versions.last_img read more

Read More

Starbucks to sell Tico brand in Costa Rica store

first_imgFrom the print editionBella Vista Coffee, hailing from Tres Ríos, southeast of San José, will be the first Tico coffee for sale in Starbucks’ new Escazú location, southwest of the capital, the daily La Nación reported.The new store is the coffee giant’s first in Costa Rica. The chain, which has been a major buyer of Costa Rican coffee for years, will open its new store on Avenida Escazú sometime in the next two weeks, where patrons will find 250 gram bags of Bella Vista beans for sale.“We are some of the principal suppliers of Starbucks, and they are the No. 1 individual buyer that Costa Rica has for its coffee,” Ronald Peters, executive director of the Coffee Institute of Costa Rica told The Tico Times in February. “Opening a café here gives national consumers a style [of drinking coffee] that is known globally, and in this way promotes the consumption of coffee. That is important for us” (TT, Feb. 3).Starbucks administrators told La Nación they selected Bella Vista Coffee because it is grown between 1,350 and 1,500 meters above sea level, and has good quality, flavor and acidity. Facebook Comments Related posts:Starbucks opens second Costa Rica location on Thursday First Starbucks in Costa Rica opens in Escazú Residents split on Starbucks announcement The first Starbucks in Costa Rica will open in Maylast_img read more

Read More

Mexico City murders deepen threatened journalists fears

first_img‘No kind of life’Espinosa, a photographer for the prestigious investigative magazine Proceso, had moved to Mexico City two months ago after receiving threats in Veracruz.He had also been beaten by state police in 2013.Another Veracruz colleague sheltering in the capital said Espinosa’s killing had brought his old hometown fears back to his doorstep.“After what happened to Rubén, your fear returns. We exiles don’t feel so safe among the multitude anymore,” said the political cartoonist, who spoke on condition of anonymity.The cartoonist fled the state in 2012 after finding a threatening note in his car. “Calladito,” it said — “Quiet.”That one word chilled his blood and convinced him to flee the country, he said. But he later returned to Mexico, counting on the sheer size of the sprawling capital to keep him safe.Living in self-exile is “no kind of life,” he told AFP.“It’s a life of constant anguish, nightmares, crying. It’s a life of not telling people where you are, not arriving where you say you will, changing your phone number, mistrusting everyone, even your friends,” he said.Currently around 15 Mexican journalists are reported to be living in self-exile abroad.The number of colleagues seeking to join them has increased substantially in recent years, said Philippe Olle-Laprune, the head of the Citlaltepetl House of Refuge in Mexico City, which shelters persecuted journalists and artists from around the world.He called Espinosa’s killing “a horrible wakeup call,” adding that “the violence hits closer to home every day.” In 2014 @article19mex documented 41 attacks against the press in Veracruz, the most dangerous state for journalism https://t.co/u1EYMibuWO— ARTICLE 19 (@article19org) August 4, 2015 MEXICO CITY – Mexico City was once seen as an island of refuge in one of the world’s most dangerous countries for reporters, but the brutal killing of a prominent photojournalist along with four other people has shattered that image.The death of news photographer Rubén Espinosa in an awful five-victim homicide has unleashed new fears for other journalists who, like him, have fled to the capital after receiving threats in their hometowns.There are currently at least a dozen journalists from around the country sheltering in Mexico City because they fear for their safety in a nation where, according to Reporters Without Borders, at least 88 of their colleagues have been murdered in the last 15 years. Relatives and friends of murdered Mexican photographer Rubén Espinosa mourn at the Dolores Cemetery in Mexico City, on Aug. 3, 2015. Alfredo Estrella/AFPOnce seen as a sort of ceasefire zone — or at least a place to hide out anonymously amid nine million people — Mexico City suddenly seems a lot less safe since Espinosa was found Friday with a bullet through his head, his hands bound and his body showing signs of torture.Four women killed alongside Espinosa were found in similar condition. They included human rights activist, anthropologist and dance company producer Nadia Vera Pérez, who was sexually abused and tortured before she was killed. Just eight months ago, in a video interview with Rompeviento TV, Vera chillingly told her interviewers that if anything happened to her, members of her family, or members of her fellow activist collective, she held Veracruz Governor Javier Duarte and his “entire Cabinet” responsible.“We want to be very clear: Our security is entirely the responsibility of the state, because it is precisely they who are ordering our repression,” Vera, who was a member of the group #YoSoy132 in Xalapa, told her interviewers, who described her as extremely anxious and nervous during the filming. Judicial authorities released surveillance footage of the alleged killers Tuesday night.“This was the armored city, and now it’s broken,” said a colleague at Espinosa’s funeral Monday who, like the slain photojournalist, hails from Veracruz.The eastern state has been described as the deadliest in Mexico for journalists by rights group Article 19, which says 17 journalists have been killed there in the last 15 years — 13 of them since current Governor Duarte came to power in 2010. ‘Flimsy’ protection The Committee to Protect Journalists ranks Mexico the eighth deadliest country in the world for reporters.Seeking to combat the violence, the government has launched a protection program for threatened journalists and rights activists, plus a special prosecutors’ office for crimes against free speech.But one former journalist enrolled in the so-called “protective mechanism,” Balbina Flores, said the program “has a lot of problems,” particularly its slow registration procedures.The Inter American Press Association agreed, criticizing the program’s “flimsy, inefficient performance.”Espinosa had opted not to register with the program, saying he did not trust the authorities.His death has left journalists in the capital living in a climate of “fear, uncertainty and defenselessness,” said Flores, who now heads the free-speech program at the city’s human rights commission. Colleagues of murdered Mexican photographer Rubén Espinosa place their cameras beside his grave. Alfredo Estrella/AFPThe Tico Times contributed to this report. Facebook Comments ¿En qué país se escapa el narco # 1, matan 43 estudiantes en Iguala y 15 periodistas de Veracruz, descubren Casa Blanca…y nadie renuncia?— JORGE RAMOS (@jorgeramosnews) August 4, 2015 Related posts:Attacks on Mexico journalists surge, says rights group Mexico horrified by suspected massacre, incineration of 43 students Nestle tweets a joke about the 43 students missing and presumed dead in Mexico Parents of 43 missing students in Mexico wage hunger strikelast_img read more

Read More

UNSECO sites put Germany on the map

first_imgIn 2014, the German National Tourist Office (GNTO) will focus on attracting more cultural travellers, with marketing efforts focused around the country’s UNESCO sites.Boasting 38 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, with an additional two added this year, GNTO Australia director marketing and sales Susann Schwachenwalde said next year’s theme will help put Germany on the map.According to the tourist board’s director, currently the World Heritage Sites are the incentive for up to 31 percent of cultural tourists to Germany.“Our UNESCO sites bring visitors to Germany every year,” she explained.Germany’s UNESCO list covers a range of attractions including the Aachen Cathedral, Pilgrimage Church of Wies, The Wadden Sea and the Wartburg Castle.Meanwhile, 2014 is also set to be a big year in Germany, as the country celebrates 25 years since the unification.According to Ms Schwachenwalde, the country will host a range of celebrations to commemorate the 25 years since the Berlin Wall came down. Source = ETB News: N.J. Germany target cultural travellers.last_img read more

Read More

February 2 2002 construction has reached the seco

first_imgFebruary 2, 2002 constructionhas reached the second level. Reinforcement steel layout and slab formdetails are checked by the crew {TT] The shoring postsbeneath the second floor slab forms are an integral part of themulti-storied construction system. The alignment is adjusted before thebraces are applied to stabilize the system. [TT]last_img

Read More