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Local groups hit out at budget cuts

first_imgWHILE there is an acceptance in Limerick that Minister Michael Noonan’s budget was not as tough as had been predicted, proposals to cut payments to the handicapped were met with anger by the Limerick Down Syndrome Associaton.And there are fears that hikes to the Drugs Payments scheme threshold could have serious consequences.The ministers decision not to increase personal tax bands was seen as a plus factor.Roger Kingston, chairman of the Limerick Down Syndrome Association, described as “outrageous,”  cuts of up to 46 per cent in payment to the handicapped.“We’ll march in the streets – this country is morally bankrupt if we allow this to happen”.However, it has emerged that the Government,  following nationwide outcry on the issue, have agreed to push the ‘pause’ button.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up St Vincent de Paul welcomed the fact that welfare payments were not cut but are concerned about the cumulative effect of other measures.Regional president, Michael Murphy, says: “Cutting the fuel allowance is a nasty one. There are houses in this city where the only source of heat is still a fire in the front room”. Increased petrol costs, car-tax and VAT are all burdens which could push struggling earners over the brink, he added. “There are many families seeking our help already even though there is a working parent – people on lower wages are being very badly hit”.Padraig Malone, Limerick Resource Centre for the Unemployed, said that much is being made of not cutting the basic welfare rate.“But they are paying it for five days now instead of six and they have cut so many important supports that unemployed people are going to be worse off,” he said.Maire McConn, pharmacist at Hogan’s in Upper  William Street, says the increase in the Drugs Payment Scheme threshold from €120 to €132 a month will prompt people with long-term conditions to stop taking medication.“The preventative inhalers are very expensive and while the relievers for Asthma cost just a few euro, people will  buy the cheaper versiond”.And warning that this could have tragic consequences, Jean Houlihan of the Asthma Society of Ireland, said:  “Relievers are cheaper but they are not treating the condition. We have more people in Ireland suffering from Asthma than there are people signing on the Live Register”. Jim Prior, manager of the Southill Family Resource, centre warned that changes in payments to lone parents will cause huge difficulties. “Here in Southill we have the highest rate of lone parents in the city. Now, when the youngest child turns seven, they revert to jobseekers allowance but the real problem will be affordable childcare for a seven- year- old if the parent takes up a course or gets work “. Previous articleRestorative Justice Project focuses on needs of victims and offendersNext articleIncreased spending crucial to economy admin Linkedin Facebook Advertisement WhatsAppcenter_img Email NewsLocal NewsLocal groups hit out at budget cutsBy admin – December 8, 2011 622 Print Twitterlast_img read more

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Investigation continuing into burglary in Ballybofey

first_img WhatsApp Loganair’s new Derry – Liverpool air service takes off from CODA By News Highland – March 2, 2021 Homepage BannerNews WhatsApp Google+ RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Important message for people attending LUH’s INR clinic An investigation is continuing into a burglary in Ballybofey. The incident happened yesterday at a house in the Meencarrigagh area between 3pm and 7.30pm.The resident of the house came home from work to discover their front door laying open and a number of TV’s had been moved from bedrooms and the sitting room to the hallway.Upon further inspection of the house they discovered that their wallet containing bank cards and their Playstation 5 had been stolen from their bedroom.Gardai are appealing to residents in the area of Meencarrigagh to contact them in Letterkenny on 074-9167100 if they observed anything in the area yesterday evening that may assist with their investigation. Investigation continuing into burglary in Ballybofey Previous articleGrounds of local soccer pitch vandalisedNext articleGarda warning after high level of drink/drug driving detections News Highland Facebookcenter_img News, Sport and Obituaries on Monday May 24th Google+ Pinterest Pinterest Facebook Twitter Arranmore progress and potential flagged as population grows Twitter Nine til Noon Show – Listen back to Monday’s Programme Community Enhancement Programme open for applicationslast_img read more

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The sorcerer’s apprentices

first_imgThe sorcerer’s apprenticesOn 4 Mar 2003 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos. Anyone who applies for a job in one of B&Q’s DIY stores is in for ashock. Not for B&Q the terse little letter, asking promising candidates tocome in for interview, or informing the unsuccessful of their doom. Instead,candidates will receive a document with a graph on it plotting theirpersonality against population norms on such factors as conscientiousness,cleanliness and integrity, and a commentary explaining why they may or may notbe cut out for a life in customer service. Thanks to an ‘Automated Telephone Screening Interview’ – a telephone-basedpsychometric questionnaire – the store claims to be able to tell which of the200,000 applicants each year might be suitable for one of 15,000 jobs. Bypressing numbers on a phone, B&Q tests personalities to see if applicantsfit with the kind of ‘culture’ it wants in its shops. “I prefer to have myclosest relationships outside work rather than with a colleague,” thesystem asks, or “I believe most people will steal if they can get away withit.” You press five for ‘very like me’ or numbers down to one for ‘nothinglike me at all’. Brave new techniques Following the ‘interview’, the system works out a score and generates thedocument. The successful go on to a database so managers at one of the 320stores can pick from a shortlist. Only then will candidates be asked aboutdrill bits, paint finishes and pyracanthas. There is always a section of the HR community who become incontinent withexcitement about go-ahead psychological sorcery like this. Imagine, they say tothemselves, a whole shop of people sharing personality traits – everybodyyes-siring and can-doing and going the extra mile – but not swiping stock orimpregnating their colleagues. Fantastic! But isn’t it all a bit too Brave New World? Recruitment is becoming atool for breeding social stability in the workplace, a kind ofpseudo-scientific caste system. The next step might be hatching employees inincubators. It is with a certain cheek, that the company has ‘respect forpeople’ as one of its five ‘values’ adorning wall plaques in stores across theland. Prospective scoffers should not be too quick, though. B&Q has beenoutspokenly progressive on HR. It is in the vanguard of employers who havetaken up the cause of older workers (they know more about DIY), has verygenerous profit-share policies and has pioneered flexible working and elearning. Moreover, its automated recruitment scheme has the advantage ofconsistency and does not discriminate on race or gender. Store managerswhittling down a pile of applications by the time-honoured method of capriceand prejudice is not exactly ideal. The psychometric commentary is part of an effort to provide feedback toapplicants (part of psychometric best practice). Yet the most powerful argumentin its favour is a simple one: since the psychometric system was adopted in1999, staff turnover has fallen, from 35 per cent a year to 29 per cent. Psychometric tests, of course, remain controversial. To some they are wickedbecause they are darkly accurate, boiling down personalities to theiralchemical essence. To others they are wicked because they are inaccurate, withas much predictive veracity for employment as sorting by birth weight. But assuming the technical bona fides of B&Q’s test, it seems to methere are two good grounds for questioning if this sifting mechanism is, well,quite up to the job. Dubious wisdom First, it is very intrusive. Prying into the quirks and ticks of humanindividuality for the sake of an entry-level job does not seem proportionate,let alone wise. How would you like it if you went for a job selling paint, werequizzed about your relationships, and received an analysis of your personality?Second, it is dubious how this system fits with the guidelines of the BritishPsychological Society (BPS), the body that supposedly promotes responsible testuse. The BPS code of good practice says test users should “use tests only inconjunction with other assessment methods and only when their use can besupported by the available technical information”. In B&Q’s system, more than 150,000 applicants are being rejected on thebasis of a psychometric instrument alone. Fortunately for B&Q, the BPS is not clear what its own guideline means.Does it mean psychometric tests should not be the only tool used to accept orreject someone? Or does it mean a company should use interviews and referencesin addition to psychometrics in its overall recruitment armoury? David Bartram, chairman of the BPS steering committee on test standards andresearch director of SHL, says the latter: it’s a question of overallrecruitment and B&Q is safe. Yet Colin Selby, a member of the division ofoccupational psychology at the BPS and a consultant with Penna, says theformer: no-one should be rejected solely because of a psychometric test score. To have such a confused message is a fudge of real psychological genius onthe part of the BPS, leaving organisations to invent their own rules – ablyassisted by suppliers with an interest in marketing psychometric applications.The truth is neither efficient nor modern: there are significant ethicaldownsides to relying on psychometrics as an initial filter that never existedwith old-fashioned manual short-listing. Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. last_img read more

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Parents: ‘UK media are cheerleaders for harmful idea that kids can be trans’

first_imgThe Christian Institute 5 May 2017Family First Comment: “….the BBC has shown again and again that it is only prepared to publicise one side of the debate.”Just like in New Zealand.The NZ media are the cheerleaders for transgender agenda – without asking the hard and necessary questions.The UK media has facilitated the harmful idea that children can be transsexual, a parental campaign group has warned.Transgender Trend, a group of concerned parents who challenge pro-trans propaganda, says the media – and the BBC in particular – are responsible for introducing and normalising the idea that children can be ‘trapped in the wrong body’.In an article published earlier this week, it set out the results of a study of media output from 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017.EndorsementTransgender Trend argues that the media has facilitated a rapid public acceptance, not just of transsexualism, but of “the completely new belief that children are ‘transgender’, together with the idea that invasive medical intervention is a necessity”.It says a quick search reveals that the “BBC alone has covered the subject of ‘transgender kids’ in at least 35 online articles, 23 radio broadcasts and 7 TV shows” in a twelve month period.Its examination of newspaper coverage also found that 114 UK-based articles on transsexual children were published between April 2016 and March 2017.After analysing the language in each of the articles, the group discovered an overwhelming tendency towards endorsing the trans lobby’s agenda.Trans languageIt identifies 25 articles that suggested a risk of suicide if a child does not ‘transition’, 67 mentioned drugs to help a child transition and 28 mentioned future surgery.There were 36 references to transsexual organisations and numerous references to gender-neutral language, gender-neutral toilets and gender-neutral school uniforms.However, across all the articles, the risks involved with childhood ‘transitions’ were only touched upon a total of 22 times.In the research, steps were taken to remove duplicates, and the group states the findings give an overall picture of press coverage.FiguresTransgender Trend was speaking after new figures emerged from the Tavistock clinic’s Gender Identity Development Service, an NHS trust which works with children diagnosed with ‘gender identity disorder’.Referrals to the clinic have risen from 1,419 in 2015/16 to 2,016 in 2016/17 – a 42 per cent increase.The figures show that referrals have been increasing at an alarming rate since 2009, when there were under 100.READ MORE: http://www.christian.org.uk/news/parents-uk-media-cheerleaders-harmful-idea-kids-can-trans/Keep up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.last_img read more

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Wins for Walton Hall and Devonshire Castle in Lall Brothers T20 tourney

first_imgBy Errol StephneyWALTON Hall registered an exciting four-wicket victory over Young Achievers on Sunday at the Walton Hall ground in the Lall Brothers Memorial T20 Tournament as play continued in North Essequibo.After winning the toss, Walton Hall chose to bowl first. Penetrative spells from off-spinner Uvindra Balgobin -3-18 (4 overs) and seamer Lochin Persaud 2-26 (3 overs) aided in restricting Young Achievers to 138-7 from their allotted 20 overs.Only Tameshwar Dhanpaul’s counterattacking 34,which included 3×6 and 2×4,served to bolster the innings. In reply, Walton Hall,despite losing three wickets within six overs,eventually consolidated and reached their target of 140 in 18 overs,losing 8 wickets in the process.It was left-handed Latchman Singh’s responsible yet colourful innings of 48( 5×4) that ease the tension and gained victory for his team.In the second match at the same venue, Devonshire Castle remained unbeaten with an authoritative display against Charity.Winning the toss and batting first, Devonshire Castle tallied 135-7 from their 20 overs with skipper Anthony Persaud top scoring with 34 ,including 2×6 and 2×4.He was supported by Essequibo’s senior batsman Avinash Persaud with 25( 3×6). A hostile spell of fast bowling by Ajay Jailall( 4-14 from 4 overs) was mainly responsible for Charity’s demolition for just 48 from 18 overs. The Competition continues.Meanwhile ,Walton Hall and Imam Bacchus Sports Club will compete for the title in the Dillip Singh Double ‘D’ Mall’s 20/20 tournament in this Sunday’s final at the Walton Hall ground.Representing Imam Bacchus will be former national batsmen Yogeshwar Lall, Latchman Rohit and Rovindra Parasram,while Walton Hall will feature Essequibo’s senior inter-county players Vishwanauth Lall, Lochin Persaud and Uvindra Balgobin.The third place play-off will be between Ravens and Charity.That game will be played first from 2:30 pm. The finals will then be played under floodlights. Both matches will be officiated by Deva Dass and Wazeer Dhanraj along with Hakim Khan who will perform the duties of Match Referee.Trophies and cash incentives will be presented by sponsor Dillip Singh,and he will be assisted by representatives of the North Essequibo Cricket Committee. Regional Executive Officer of Region 2,Mr. Rupert Hopkinson,is also expected to grace the occasion.last_img read more

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Michael’s strong play pushes SU to NIT 3rd round

first_img Comments As Nicole Michael emerged from the locker room and went through her routine halftime drills Monday, something was visibly different in her demeanor. No facial expressions. No chatting with teammates. Nothing.With her team trailing at the intermission, Syracuse’s all-time leading scorer had only registered three points on two shots from the field. And with her squad on the brink of elimination from the WNIT, and with SU head coach Quentin Hillsman pleading, the senior had to do something.‘I had to respond to Coach’s halftime speech,’ Michael said. ‘It was pretty … yeah … it wasn’t good, so I just responded to that.’ Prompted by a challenge from her coach, the killer instinct returned.Behind Michael’s 15 second-half points, the Orange came from behind to secure a late 69-55 victory over Richmond in the second round of the WNIT at Manley Field House in front of a crowd of 316. The win gives SU a program record 24 wins on the season heading into Friday’s matchup against another Richmond, Va., squad — Virginia Commonwealth.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAfter an uneventful first half, Michael and the Orange snapped out of its first-half funk and put on an offensive clinic in the second. Jumping out to an 8-2 run through the first 2:20 of the half, the Orange began imposing its will upon the smaller, less-athletic Spiders. SU outscored the Spiders 46-26 in the second half.‘Take away her 15 points in the second half and we would’ve lost,’ junior guard Erica Morrow said. ‘She’s just so big on every play, whether it’s a tip, an offensive or defensive rebound or a shot. She’s a key part to our success and without her, it would be tough to win.’The Orange played uninspired basketball for the first 20 minutes. Only six trips to the charity stripe. Fifteen turnovers to just four assists. The hustle plays, seemingly nonexistent.But that changed in the second half, largely thanks to Michael. From the first minute after halftime, she made her presence felt. Slashing to the basket, post up, and drawing fouls in the paint led to easy points. Just 1:23 into the half, Michael stripped the ball from Richmond guard Crystal Goring, and weaved through two defenders on the fast break before easily getting to the rim. On the ensuing possession, Michael immediately took it right at Richmond guard Danielle Bell on a post move, using her obvious height advantage and length around the basket. That kind of scoring mentality was evident on nearly every possession. ‘We have a lot of different sets that we can run to get her the ball,’ Hillsman said. ‘We went back to freshman year when we gave her the ball every possession, and we just did a few things to give her the ball in the spots closer to the basket where she can score and didn’t have to put the ball on the floor a lot. And that was big.’ Though Michael had an obvious size advantage, she said she was a bit hesitant when Hillsman told her to go down in the post and do some damage. But after connecting on a few early baskets, she kept going back to what came naturally.‘At first I was kind of surprised that (Hillsman) wanted me to go into the post, but I just responded to what he wanted me to do,’ Michael said. ‘I went down, played strong down there and did pretty well.’With Michael leading the way, SU started clicking on all cylinders. Following Michael’s example, the Orange started imposing its will. According to Morrow, SU started doing the ‘little things’ that it wasn’t doing in the first half.  Aside from Michael’s scoring, Morrow said that was the difference. After committing more than a dozen turnovers in the first half, the Orange turned the ball just four times in the second. With the turnovers held to a minimum, SU went 15-of-27 from the field. It was a tale of two halves for SU. As a result, Hillsman’s squad survives and advances to the third round of the WNIT. And in the locker room after the game, Michael was uncharacteristically all smiles.‘I just wanted to win,’ Michael said, trying her best to hide the grin. ‘And my team wanted to win. We just wanted to keep playing. So I was just happy every time I made a good play, every time my team made a good play.’[email protected] Published on March 22, 2010 at 12:00 pmcenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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