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first_imgPredictions on the future of learning discussed at Limerick Lifelong Learning Festival Linkedin WhatsApp TAGSGardaílimerickmobile phoneOperation Handsfree Limerick Ladies National Football League opener to be streamed live Limerick Artist ‘Willzee’ releases new Music Video – “A Dream of Peace” Limerick’s National Camogie League double header to be streamed live NewsLimerick Gardaí team up with mobile phone suppliers to cut road deathsBy Staff Reporter – September 19, 2016 595 Phone suppliers and Gardai are urging Limerick motorists to “go handsfree”WITH almost 2,000 drivers found using mobile phones in Limerick during the first eight months of the year, the message from An Garda Siochana is clear, “put the phone down while driving – it could cost you your life”.Operation Handsfree was launched in Limerick on Monday as a joint initiative involving Gardaí and local mobile phone businesses who are introducing special offers to encourage drivers to purchase handsfree kits and to stop holding phones while driving.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up Inspector Paul Reidy of the Limerick Divisional Traffic Corp said that the aim of the initiative is to reduce fatalities on the road and the number of serious collisions.“Unfortunately we are at ten fatalities on Limerick roads so far this year while last year there were four for the entire 12 months. We are very concerned about that and we want to do everything we can about that’” he said.From Monday, September 19 to October 1, associated local businesses will be running special offers on handsfree kits for drivers to install and use in their cars.“We want to encourage people to avail of the offers and to cease the practice of holding a phone while driving” Inspector Reidy said after he said that 1,996 people have been detected committing the offence so far in 2016.Chief Superintendent Dave Sheahan said that the Limerick divisional traffic corp had “carried out a number of blitz detections and were catching 40 or 50 people using their mobiles while driving.“That should not be part of our job. We want to get the message across but, for some reason, it is not getting out there.“The aim of the initiative introduced by Inspector Reidy and local mobile phone business affiliated to Limerick Chamber is to create awareness rather than having people getting caught.“We want people to have the information. It is important to convince people that the idea of using a mobile phone while driving is a non-runner and everyone knows how dangerous it is but yet people still try to do it.“If you look at some of the hard hitting advertisements on radio and television that are out there now, it’s hard to understand why the message isn’t getting through” Supt Sheahan said.“I know in my house some people turn the television off because the advertisements are so graphic and hard hitting. What we are trying to do with this initiative is to try and create that extra awareness. We are not out there to try and catch people using their mobile phone. We are out there trying to save their lives. End of story.” WATCH: “Everyone is fighting so hard to get on” – Pat Ryan on competitive camogie squads center_img Advertisement Twitter RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Previous articleLimerick is falling behind on Sport Capital Grant fundingNext articleCompetition winner Staff Reporterhttp://www.limerickpost.ie Facebook Print Email Billy Lee names strong Limerick side to take on Wicklow in crucial Division 3 clashlast_img read more

Heiko Küverling/iStockBy MEREDITH DELISO, ABC News(NEW YORK) — Volunteers turned out in droves over the weekend to help clean up their hometowns following the (sometimes violent) protests sparked by the death of George Floyd.In downtown Reno, Nevada, one local politician estimates that at least 3,000 people went out to help repair the city on Sunday — more than the number of people who protested the day before.“They showed up and made a positive difference in a community that they love,” Donald Abbott, a councilman in nearby Sparks, Nevada, told ABC News. “Today was special. Today was just us coming together for the benefit of our community as a whole.”Some volunteers went out once Washoe County’s 7 a.m. curfew lifted to sweep up glass from the sidewalks and scrub graffiti off the Virginia Street Bridge, which was especially hit hard by vandalism, Abbott said. There were 23 arrests made on Saturday and Sunday from protests in the region, the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office said Sunday.“If you didn’t know what happened last night, you wouldn’t know that something happened down here, it looks pretty good,” Abbott said.Similar cleanup efforts were reported over the weekend in Seattle; Chicago; Nashville, Tennessee; Raleigh, North Carolina; Los Angeles; Cincinnati and Minneapolis, among other cities.San Antonio Spurs player Lonnie Walker was among the volunteers cleaning up downtown San Antonio on Sunday.“I got a lot of love for you all,” Walker said in a video he posted on Instagram. The NBA player handed out bottles of water and joined efforts to remove graffiti from the side of a building.In Houston, truck driver Brian Irving was seen power washing a federal building early Saturday morning.“I said, ‘Let me go down there and let me clean up my city,’” Irving told ABC station KTRK-TV in Houston. “What came to my mind was what JFK said: ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, but ask what you can do for your country.’ I’m coming down here to put my little bit in.”Protests have erupted in cities across the country after Floyd, a black man, died on Memorial Day after he was pinned down by a white Minnesota police officer in Minneapolis. The National Guard was activated in Washington, D.C., and 17 other states. Mayors from Portland, Oregon to Atlanta have set weekend curfews to help limit further property damage, and business owners braced for more protests on Sunday.“We were blessed, we didn’t have any damage last night,” Larry Rosenberger, owner of Kilwins chocolate shop in downtown San Antonio, told ABC News on Sunday. “We are concerned about today. We’ll probably end up closing a little early, and be mindful of letting our team get out of downtown safely.”Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved. read more

first_img Experts detail vaccine unknowns, need to continue masking, distancing Now that COVID-19 vaccines are finally here, employers have begun looking ahead to an eventual full return to the workplace in the coming months. But even though their offices may look exactly as they did last spring when most white-collar organizations shifted to remote operations, they will find that things will be very different, say Harvard Business School (HBS) faculty who study the work world.The pandemic has sped up macro trends in consumer behavior, business management, and hiring. That, along with insights gained by months of adjustments to work roles, schedules, routines, and priorities, have prompted employers and employees to reconsider many default assumptions about what they do along with how and why they do it.The changes will vary by field and employer, but experts predict flexibility and safety will be top priorities that could bring, for instance, a rethinking of the five-day work week and the way employees earn and spend vacation time. Also, the power dynamics between employers and employees will shift as each reappraise the other’s roles in light of what they learned during the pandemic. And organizations will likely give more attention to employees’ mental health care, getting a closer look at the daily personal pressures their staffs face.“It’s the Next Normal we’re headed to, not ‘back to normal,’ and that, for a lot of companies, is going to feature changes in work practices, changes in employee expectations of their employer, and companies learning from this duress about what they can do to be more effective and efficient and attractive employers,” said Joseph B. Fuller, professor of management practice and co-founder of Managing the Future of Work project at HBS.One of the first challenges businesses face will be the question of whether to ask, or even insist, that employees be vaccinated before coming back to work. For a variety of reasons, not everyone will agree to do so, leaving employers to struggle with how to protect their other employees, customers, and clients, while not violating civil rights laws.One year into the pandemic, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the federal regulatory agency that oversees private sector workplace safety in all 50 states, had not established national COVID safety standards under President Trump, leaving individual companies and industries, like meatpacking, to set their own protocols and policies.“It’s bananas to entrust our public health decisions to disaggregated, atomized employers making their own decisions about what’s good enough and what’s not,” said Terri Ellen Gerstein, director of the State and Local Enforcement Project at Harvard Law School’s Labor and Worklife Program. “With OSHA abdicating its responsibility, that’s been happening in too many places.”,President Joseph R. Biden Jr. signed an executive order Jan. 21 directing OSHA to issue revised COVID-19 safety guidance for businesses within the next two weeks. The order also calls for the agency to consider setting emergency temporary COVID safety standards, including whether masks should be required in workplaces, by March 15; a top-to-bottom review of OSHA enforcement efforts, which worker advocates, including Gerstein, have called lax; and begin focused enforcement on firms engaging in large-scale violations. The order did not, however, address the issue of whether workers could be required by employers to receive vaccinations before returning to their workplaces.Employers should “absolutely recommend” employees get vaccinated, if that’s their goal, but not demand they do so, advises Ashley V. Whillans, a behavioral psychologist at HBS who recently surveyed 44,000 remote workers in 44 U.S. states and 88 countries to study how the pandemic is affecting workplace attitudes and behaviors.“Make it an opt-out policy but have a formal process for opting out that doesn’t involve having to email your boss or talk to a specific manager in the office. We’ve shown in other contexts that having formal policies that don’t involve speaking to another person who’s directly responsible for your compensation can help employees feel confident in making decisions that are more aligned with their personal values and less likely to make decisions based” on how others may perceive them, she said.“I think the workplace issues in our country so often are dealt with in this zero-sum way, where worker interests are seen as adversarial to business interests,” said Gerstein. “And this is really a situation where everyone has to make sure that people are safe at work.”That’s just the beginning. The pandemic has jolted the foundation of a workplace model that had been relatively unchanged since the late 1920s: employees traveling from home to a workplace five days a week, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., to complete their obligations.Since March, employers have had time to reassess which jobs and employees are truly essential to the success of their business, while workers have been able to reconsider the daily demands their jobs place on their lives, such as travel, commuting, or following rigid work day schedules, and whether they’re still willing to tolerate them, said Fuller, who also co-chairs the Project on Workforce with Harvard Kennedy School and Harvard Graduate School of Education faculty.That’s led to once less-common trends like workplace flexibility, “work from anywhere,” and virtual meetings becoming more mainstream. With broader acceptance, Fuller expects many knowledge-based industries will move to a four-day work week, cut back significantly on travel for internal activities like training and sales meetings, and do away with vacation policies tied to an employee’s years of service. Instead, workers could take as much time off as they wish provided their work is done, an approach first embraced by Silicon Valley firms.,It has also disrupted the balance of power at work. Where employers used to set the terms of employment — where, when, and how the work gets done — Fuller said the question of “who decides” is now much more up for grabs.Organizations that offer employees the ability to work flexible workday schedules, to choose when and how they come into the office, and that have adopted increased COVID safety precautions score highest with their own workers, Whillans said her COVID survey data shows. So as employers prepare to reopen, they would be wise to maintain and emphasize work flexibility and safety regulations and allow staff to come back to the workplace at their own discretion.“Organizations need to clearly communicate with employees their expectations for employee engagement, how often they assume that employees need to come in, and if there are any changes to office policies, like lunches or common spaces not being available, they should clearly communicate this as a safety precaution,” said Whillans. Too often, firms “under-communicate” out of fear of how messages will be received, when research shows that conveying as much information as possible, being almost “overly transparent,” helps businesses win trust.One effect of the pandemic that will persist long after businesses reopen is employees’ mental health, Whillans and Fuller say.The virus’ physical, social, and economic impacts have not been felt equally, which has led to “significant” mental health strains, including increased anxiety and depression, on people at every level within organizations and across industries. Even those who did not become sick or laid off report worries about their own health and that of loved ones, the possibility of losing income, or just the constant uncertainty over when, or if, their lives will return to normal, said Whillans. “This is really a situation where everyone has to make sure that people are safe at work.” — Terri Ellen Gerstein, Harvard Law School Related Disruption of work relationships adds to mental-health concerns during pandemic Pandemic pushes mental health to the breaking point Experts say young, frontline workers could suffer long-term effects Study says these ties have more weight because we are less interconnected these days center_img How COVID turned a spotlight on weak worker rights “We are observing high levels of burnout and stress,” even among workers who still appear to be high functioning, said Whillans. With the current economic recession, employees are “disincentivized to speak openly and honestly about their stress and frustration” out of fear, or they cope by minimizing its effect with comparisons with others who seem to be worse off.“Workplaces don’t have a good grasp on the depths of the stress that employees are experiencing,” she said.Fuller said many business leaders got a “real wake-up call” about the ubiquity of mental health issues among employees during this work-from-home period, especially the stress and depression caused by the pandemic, and “it’s been sobering” for them to see firsthand how acute the effects can be. It’s also given many a better understanding of the daily complexities their staff members must navigate, like caring for young children or elderly parents, just to be able to get to the office and be productive. “It’s caused them to have to reflect on the totality of their workers’ life experience,” he added.In the coming months, employers will need to provide more support to employees than ever before, either in the form of temporary relief, job sharing, or other incentives, in order to help them deal with the increased stress they’ve been experiencing, said Whillans. Block and Sachs point to flaws in the social safety net, an indifferent OSHA, and a system that favors employers over employees Fauci says herd immunity possible by fall, ‘normality’ by end of 2021 “Organizations are likely to miss thinking about well-being as one of the decision-making factors that goes into whether they open and how they open,” she said. “I would really underscore the importance of organizations not overlooking employees’ health and safety concerns because burnt-out employees are going to be less productive and more likely to quit.”Virtually every business has discovered new things, both good and bad, about themselves over the last 10 months, but the smartest ones will have used the time to also ask new and different questions of themselves, said Fuller.“They should use their learning from this period to ask themselves questions like: What have I learned about what allows people to be productive and have a better quality of work life? And, should I be revisiting the way we do things around here based on that? What have I learned about communicating with my workforce? And what do I want to make sure we continue to do because [the] practice that we developed in this crisis is better than what we were doing?”last_img read more

first_imgSolar self-generation rises sharply in Spain FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享El País:Solar power is paving the way for a rise in self-generated energy in Spain. Installed capacity grew for the second year running in 2018 with a 94% hike on 2017 figures – and 90% of that was self-generated.Installed solar power in Spain passed the 5,000-MW mark of installed capacity last year, indicating a decade of vertiginous growth. Despite a slowdown in 2012, solar energy is once again powering ahead with both companies and homes installing the technology in a bid to curb costs.In 2018, 261.7 MW of new solar power was installed, of which 26 MW are connected to the grid and the remainder, 235.7 MW, self-generating installations.José Donoso, managing general of Spain’s Photovoltaic Union (UNEF), believes the 80% drop in the cost of the technology over the past 10 years is responsible for the upward trend, coupled with the European Union’s self-generated renewable energy drive.For years, self-generated energy was punished in Spain by administrative obstacles and fees from the central government, such as the so-called “sun tax” levied by the Popular Party (PP). However, Pedro Sánchez’s Socialist Party (PSOE) government ditched the tax last October and is now preparing to regulate self-generated electricity practices and the financial compensation for feeding energy into the grid – which could increase the value of the technology. The regulations are set to be ready by May. After this date, UNEF believes self-generated energy will grow between 300 and 400 MW a year.If the projections are right, 2019 will be a record year for renewable energy in Spain, and solar power in particular. According to Donoso, 4,000 MW of solar installed capacity is on the cards.More: Self-generated energy soars in Spain as solar panels plunge in pricelast_img read more

first_imgThe Boynton Beach Police department has charged a 19-year-old woman with animal cruelty after they say her 9-month-old puppy was found starving death and laying in a pile of it’s on waste inside the woman’s room.Officials say they received a call from Animal Care & Control after the 19-year-old’s roommate discovered the dog’s condition and contacted them.At the time of the call, the roommate reported that he had not seen his roommate, Elizabeth Rebecca Ebben, in over 3 weeks and just found out that the dog had been in her room the whole time.The dog, a pit bull mix, was described as weighing only 14 pounds and being “skin and bones.”A veterinarian also discovered that the animal had hookworms, muscle loss, and was suffering from “starvation.”When investigators finally got in touch with Ebben, she told them that she acquired the dog from a Facebook post a few months ago, but after initially taking care of it, she began staying out with her friends a various locations and would only come back to the apartment every other day to take care of the dog.Ebben also told police that she is “ashamed and embarrassed” for her behavior.The animal was put in the custody of Animal Care & Control where he was nursed back to health. He was then placed with Peggy Adams Rescue League, and has since been adopted.Ebben is now facing charges of felony cruelty to animals and unlawful confinement of animals/animal abandonment.last_img read more

first_imgReid Lidow, a senior majoring in international relations and political science, received a Gates Cambridge Scholarship this past week, which grants him a full scholarship at the University of Cambridge starting this fall.International researcher · Dornsife senior Reid Lidow discussed his independent research trip in Burma for his senior thesis in 2012. – Courtesy of Reid LidowA total of 40 scholars were chosen from 800 U.S. applicants. The scholarship program’s goal is to support leaders who are committed to “improving the lives of others,” according to Lidow.Lidow is the second Trojan to receive this award. A Dornsife College of Arts, Letters and Sciences student, Lidow is currently participating in the Teaching International Relations Program at USC and has been a volunteer teacher in the program since his freshman year.Lidow said students are fortunate not just because of academic programs, but also because of the many opportunities to make an impact on and off campus.“Here at USC, we are not blind to the fact that the community surrounding USC is — socioeconomically — a little bit down on its heels,” Lidow said. “We don’t live in a bubble. TIRP is a great way to make a difference in the community surrounding USC.”Steven Lamy, professor of international relations, initially introduced this program to Lidow. Lamy remembers him as one of the students completing all of the assignments and attending all class sessions.“When you see a student who takes his education very seriously, it’s important to work with those students and help them to develop as scholars,” Lamy said. “We are looking for students sitting in [the] first few rows that’s really interested in subject matter. These students ask great questions and are not overly concerned about grades. They are more concerned about learning and understanding.”Lidow has been Professor Lamy’s research assistant for three years.In 2012, Lidow went on an independent research trip to Burma to answer the question, “Why is Burma opening up to the world?” His senior thesis explored both the external and internal factors that motivated Burma’s reforms.“Burma today is cut from the Tale of Two Cities image — it’s the best of times and the worst of times,” Lidow said. “Right now in Burma, there are people who never had it better, who are feeling the reforms and benefiting considerably. And there are some people who never had worse — some of the ethnic minorities.”Professor Lamy emphasized the importance of participating in global action, and how having a mentor can help.“What students need to do is find a faculty member who you can identify with; that can not only help answer questions, but also point out the opportunities,” Lamy said.Lidow believes undergraduate research should arise naturally and not be forced.“If you want to do an independent research [project], that requires a lot of patience,’ Lidow said. “I recommend waiting for that ‘Aha!’ moment.”Lidow emphasized the importance of continuously asking questions when conducting academic research.“I think the most important thing is to be curious,” Lidow said. “Those questions then usually lead to someone seeking to conduct their own research — And there is always a research channel or road you can take.”last_img read more