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Emery hopeful of Arsenal signings

first_imgUnai Emery is confident that Arsenal are working as hard as possible to bring in a new signing before the transfer deadline amid talk of a move for Ivan Perisic.The Gunners have been linked with midfielders throughout January, with interest in Barcelona’s Denis Suarez widely reported while Inter winger Perisic sat out his side’s defeat to Torino on Sunday. The Serie A giants claim he has asked to leave.Both names were put to Emery on Monday ahead of Tuesday’s home Premier League clash with Cardiff City and, although the Arsenal boss could not identify a specific player, he is keen to see an arrival this week. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! “It’s one thing the club is working on, the possibility with different players,” he told a news conference.”I don’t know exactly which players, but it’s players with the possibility to help us, who can play on the wing, right or left. I think any player who can come here and help us is good news. “[Suarez] is the same [as Perisic]. This transfer is not easy and the message is that the club are working on different players. The possibility, if it can be [done], is good for us.”I don’t know [what will happen] because this transfer window is not easy. I know the club are doing all they can to achieve one player to help us.”Emery confirmed Arsenal are looking at two players specifically and retains hope both may arrive, adding: “Between nil and two [signings]. Two because we are looking at two different players who have the possibility to come here.”Arsenal have injury problems in defence, with Laurent Koscielny and Sokratis Papastathopoulos both absent for Tuesday, yet Emery does not believe another signing is required at the back.”We can only bring players that we are very convinced will be able to help us with a good performance,” he said. “We have enough players who can play centre-back in the squad.”The problem is we’re having a lot of injuries in this position. We have enough players. If we brought in another player, and all the other players we have are well to play, then we could maybe have a problem in the future.”last_img read more

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Pep Guardiola ‘happy and proud’ as Manchester City draw with Liverpool

first_imgPep Guardiola won 21 trophies in seven years while in charge of Barcelona and Bayern Munich but said his Manchester City side’s 1-1 draw with Liverpool in the Premier League on Sunday was one of his happiest moments in management.It was quite a statement from the Spaniard who was clearly still as breathless as the fans who watched a classic encounter at the Etihad Stadium when he spoke after the match. (Manchester City hit back to earn a draw with Liverpool)”You cannot imagine. It is one of the happiest days of my career as a manager. I am so proud,” Guardiola, whose side were knocked out of the Champions League by Monaco in midweek, said.”After the Champions League, the last few days at training people were so, so sad, people don’t talk too much.”We arrive here against Liverpool who have no Europe all season and one week to prepare. The spirit, how we played, it is one of my happiest days as a manager.”Guardiola’s side fell behind to James Milner’s 51st-minute penalty but earned a point thanks to Sergio Aguero’s equaliser.Aguero wasted a gilt-edged opportunity to put City ahead, volleying over with the goal gaping, while Adam Lallana also missed a sitter for Liverpool.The draw meant both sides dropped points in what is becoming a fierce battle to finish in the top four. City are 12 points behind leaders Chelsea and two behind second-placed Tottenham Hotspur while Liverpool are a further point back.Asked why his side’s performance had filled him with pride, Guardiola said it was because of how they responded to their bitter European exit.advertisement”When you approach one game after 10 games winning, it’s nothing special. But you have to consider the situation we played this game, how we played against them, a top team,” he said. “They have exceptional players. This means a lot to me. That is why I am so happy.”Guardiola, winner of two Champions Leagues and three La Liga titles with Barcelona plus three Bundesliga titles with Bayern, said his side had deserved all three points.”We are a little sad because we deserved to win,” he said. “We conceded some chances but we created more than them. Our problem is we don’t score when they are easy goals. It was the same against Chelsea and Tottenham.”last_img read more

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World XI tour to Pak will send out positive message: ICC CEO

first_imgKarachi, Sep 13 (PTI) The ICC Chief Executive Officer Dave Richardson feels that the World XIs tour to Pakistan ushers a new beginning for international cricket to return to the country. “The World XI tour will send out a positive message to the world cricket community that the security situation in Pakistan has improved and satisfactory,” Richardson said at a news conference in Lahore. The World XI led by the South African captain Faf du Plessis played their first T20 International yesterday against Pakistan before a packed Gaddafi Stadium. The tour has been backed by the International Cricket Council, which has borne expenses for the visit of security experts to Pakistan to finalise the security arrangements for the series. Richardson made it clear that if everything went according to plan, ICC could plan future events in Pakistan. “Pakistan is an unavoidable part of the international cricket community and the Pakistani people are very passionate about the game. The ICC is very serious about reviving international cricket in the country and we are happy the first step has been taken with the World XI tour,” he said. The ICC official said security issue is not just confined to Pakistan but is a global concern. “There are security concerns in other sports as well in the world. We decided to support this tour after a very positive report by Giles Clarke,” he said. Clarke heads the ICCs special task force on Pakistan cricket and has been given a royal treatment while visiting Lahore with the World XI squad. The ICC official, however, made it clear that restoration of international cricket in Pakistan would be a slow process as tours by ICC member nations would all be linked to the prevailing security situation in the country. “It is a step by step process and will take time. But the first step has been taken with this tour,” he said. He said if Pakistan Super League matches are held in Pakistan it would help in boosting the confidence of the international cricket community about the security situation in the country. PTI Cor CM CMadvertisementlast_img read more

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Law to change to make sex between coaches and 16- and 17-year-olds illegal

first_imgReuse this content Read more Sport Share via Email Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Anne Tiivas, the head of the NSPCC’s child protection in sport unit, said: “We know that some sports coaches spend years grooming young people and then, as soon as their 16th birthday comes around, they target them for sex. Ever since the football abuse scandal broke we have been strongly urging government to close this loophole that leaves children in sports and other out-of-school clubs vulnerable to adults who want to prey on them.”It is almost exactly a year since Andy Woodward’s interview with the Guardian, which led to hundreds of his fellow victims coming forward and the uncovering of football’s sex abuse scandal. There have also been allegations of inappropriate relationships between coaches and athletes in canoeing and archery.Speaking at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport parliamentary questions session, Crouch said: “A year ago, Andy Woodward reported historic allegations of sexual abuse in football. It was very brave of him to do so. I’m pleased to announce that I have secured ministerial agreement to change the law on positions of trust to include sports coaches.”In June, the Guardian revealed that police were investigating a suspended senior coach at British Canoeing after several allegations were made of child grooming and sexual assault.In January the NSPCC called for the closure of a “loophole” allowing coaches to have relationships with 16 and 17-year-olds under their care.“This announcement is a much-needed step in the right direction but we are keen to hear more about their plans,” added Tivas, “We will not rest until the Government makes this change which will protect children up and down the country.” One year after football’s child abuse scandal broke, stories are yet to be told Topics Share on WhatsApp Share on LinkedIncenter_img Changes to the law are set to make it illegal for sport coaches to have sex with 16- and 17-year-old children in their care in the wake of abuse and athlete welfare scandals across sport.The sports minister, Tracey Crouch, informed parliament that the Ministry of Justice had agreed changes to the law which would bring the sport industry into line with other sectors. It is illegal for teachers to sleep with pupils under the age of 18 and for care workers to have sex with 16- and 17-year-olds but at present the same strictures do not apply in sport. Children Support The Guardian news … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share on Messenger Share on Pinterest Child protection Since you’re here…last_img read more

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Texas Football Could Break A School Record This Year

first_imgA general view of Texas' football stadium.AUSTIN, TX – SEPTEMBER 04: A general view of fans during the game between the Texas Longhorns and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium on September 4, 2016 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)When Texas upset Georgia in the Sugar Bowl this past season, Sam Ehlinger didn’t shy away from saying the football program is back. Well, it turns out the star quarterback made a pretty accurate statement.The Longhorns still have to prove themselves this upcoming season, but Tom Herman has them on the right track. After winning seven games in 2017, Herman led the team to a 10-4 record the following year.Expectations will be high this year in Austin, which should apply some pressure on the football program. However, it also means the fan base will be out in full force.In 2010, the Longhorns reached an all-time mark for ticket sales with roughly 62,500. This happened right after Texas made the BCS National Championship. Clearly, the win over Georgia has Texas fans ready for the 2019 season because the school could break their ticket sales record very soon.With ticket sales available to the general public, the Longhorns are expecting a potential record-breaking number of sales.From Hookem.com:“It could’ve happened this morning, for all I know while we’re on the phone,” said Drew Martin, UT’s director of external affairs who oversees ticketing. “Our initial goal was 60,000. Then we saw how well we were doing and moved the goal to 63,000.”Texas should be one of the favorites to win the Big 12.The Longhorns are looking for their first title since 2005.[Hookem.com]last_img read more

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivers Christmas message to Canadians

first_imgPrime Minister Justin Trudeau says this year’s holidays are about spreading kindness and light to one another.In Trudeau’s Christmas message to Canadians, he encourages families to spend time together and partake in holiday activities.Trudeau also says some families are having a tough time this season as loved ones may not be able to celebrate Christmas.He acknowledges low-income families struggling to make ends meet, and he says the federal government is thinking of them this holiday season.Trudeau also says he is grateful to members of the Canadian Armed Forces and he thanks them for their service.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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Concert Tickets Help Charity

first_img2013 Grammy Nominees and past Grammy Winners have teamed up with Tickets-for-Charity so fans can get great seats while helping raise money for great causes!Green Day, Katy Perry, The Black Keys, Carrie Underwood, Matchbox Twenty, Taylor Swift, Widespread Panic, Trace Adkins, Coldplay, Brad Paisley, Linkin Park, James Taylor, Eric Church, Jason Aldean, Toby Keith, Blake Shelton, Zac Brown Band and more performing artist superstars have teamed up with Tickets-for-Charity.com to raise money for more than 100 worthy charities.Any fan can shop at Tickets-for-Charity.com and buy premium tickets — only email sign-up required to become a Fanlanthropist: The ticket prices are the same or less than sold elsewhere — but seats are always in the first several rows so fans can finally get to see their favorite performing artists and bands up-close! Tickets-for-Charity also offers exclusive tickets for special VIP events to meet the artists, such as the current “VIP Eat & Greets” now on sale.“Fans are able to buy some of the best seats in the house to concerts nationwide, pay the same or less than sold elsewhere, with a portion of the price going to charity — great seats to help great causes where everyone becomes a Fanlanthropist,” said Jay Whitehead, Tickets-for-Charity CEO.Concert ticket purchases at Tickets-for-Charity.com benefit charities aligned with each artist plus a charity that customers can choose from list of 100+ partners. Through a proprietary technology platform, Tickets-for-Charity.com produces a clear receipt to show customers exactly how much money they spent on their tickets and how much they can claim as a donation for tax purposes.last_img read more

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Modis tenure as Gujarat CM a black spot Maya

first_imgLucknow: Hitting out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BSP president Mayawati on Wednesday said his legacy as the chief minister of Gujarat is a “black spot” and “burden” on the BJP as well as the communal history of the country.The former Uttar Pradesh chief minister also said that Modi was “unfit” as chief minister and prime minister and his tenure has seen “anarchy and hatred”. “My tenure as chief minister of UP for four times has been clean and works done on law and order, development, peoples welfare front are remembered even today. PM Modi has been CM of Gujarat for a longer time but his legacy is such it is a black spot not only on himself but also on the BJP and a burden on communal history of the country,” she said here. Also Read – 2019 most peaceful festive season for J&K: Jitendra Singh”It is clear how fit the BSP president is on issues of peoples welfare and national interest and how unfit the prime minister is,” she said. “During our government, UP remained free of anarchy and riots but Narendra Modi’s tenure not only as the Gujarat CM but also as the prime minister has been full of anarchy, violence, tension and hatred and so it can be said that he has failed in holding public office and is unfit,” Mayawati said. “As the Chief Minister of Gujarat, he had been unfit in adhering to the ‘raj dharma’ in accordance with the Indian culture, Constitution and the law and has also been unfit as the prime minister,” she said. Also Read – Personal life needs to be respected: Cong on reports of Rahul’s visit abroadAlleging that the BJP forced GST and note ban on the country in an immature manner, she said it had been done so as to prove themselves as ‘doodh ka dhula'(honest) and others as wrong. “Their favourite and corrupt capitalists fled the country with the money of the common people deposited in banks. This was made possible only with connivance of Modi government,” she charged. The BSP president said BJP appears to be suffering from the “disease” of proving themselves as honest and others as wrong and “corrupt” but the country knows that most of those having benami properties and corrupt are connected with the BJP. “But like he is an OBC on paper, prime minister is honest only on paper.The BJP and PM are different in reality and their actual accounts are kept hidden under a carpet,” she charged, adding all efforts to defame her proved futile as the accounts of her party were clean. On some Opposition parties terming the BSP president as ‘daulat ki beti’ instead of ‘dalit ki beti’, Mayawati said this has been done mostly by those who had casteist and narrow mindset.last_img read more

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UN sends experts to assess threat of dam collapsing into lake in

A similar release of toxic, odourless carbon dioxide from Lake Nyos, in the Northwest Province of the West African country, killed more than 1,700 people in 1986, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said today.In response to a request for assistance from the Government of Cameroon, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and OCHA joined in sending in two experts from the Netherlands to collaborate with experts from the national Ministry of Territorial Administration in assessing the situation at the crater lake.A preliminary report is expected soon, OCHA said.”The potential for damage if the dam were to collapse is severe,” it said. “Not only would tens of thousands of individuals living downstream in Cameroon and Nigeria be affected by the ensuing flooding, but there is also a possibility that toxic carbon dioxide gas stored in the deeper layers of the lake could be released.” read more

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Suncor restarts operations

Suncor restarts operations AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Just days before people start going back to Fort McMurray, oilsands production has restarted at one plant.Suncor announced initial production got underway at its Firebag in-situ facility last week.Startup activities are also progressing at the MacKay River and base plant. The company is forecasting initial production there by the end of this week.Fort Hills should be ready to go in a matter of days as well.More than 4,000 employees and contractors are now back in the area, and another 3,500 will be brought in over the next week.Alberta Health Services gave Suncor the go ahead Friday to start using their lodges again, that’s where many of the workers are staying. by 660 NEWS Staff Posted May 30, 2016 7:22 am MDT read more

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UN rights office warns Boko Haram over sale of Nigerian schoolgirls as

“We are deeply concerned about the outrageous claims made in a video believed to be by the leader of Boko Haram in Nigeria yesterday,” Rupert Colville, the spokesman for the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), said in a briefing in Geneva. “[We] warn the perpetrators that there is an absolute prohibition against slavery and sexual slavery in international law,” the OHCHR spokesperson warned. “These can, under certain circumstances, constitute crimes against humanity.”He added that there was no statute of limitations for such grave international crimes, including slavery and sexual slavery, “Anyone responsible could be arrested and prosecuted at any time in the future”. These strong warnings come as the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reports the abduction today of eight more girls in Nigeria. “This is an outrage and a worsening nightmare for the girls themselves and for the families of the more than 200 girls who have been stolen from their communities in the last several weeks,” said the agency in a news release, which deems it “especially abhorrent” that the girls were allegedly abducted to prevent them from attending school. “UNICEF calls on the abductors to immediately return these girls unharmed to their communities, and we implore all those with influence on the perpetrators to do everything they can to secure the safe return of the girls – and to bring their abductors to justice,” said the statement.High Commissioner Navi Pillay has condemned the violent abduction of the girls, believed to be between 15 and 18 years old, seized at gunpoint on April 14 after Boko Haram insurgents stormed a school in the north-eastern town of Chibok.“The girls must be immediately returned, unharmed, to their families,” her spokesperson said.As for what could be done if Boko Haram does not respect Ms. Pillay’s demands, Mr. Colville said the primary responsibility lay with the Nigerian State, which was “large and strong”, and he stressed that it was “particularly important to ensure greater cooperation among various authorities for the greater good, which was the release of the girls”.OHCHR has also said that the authorities need to undertake effective measures to protect their people within the remits of international law. Failure to do so would be a violation of human rights.During a visit to Nigeria earlier this year, Ms. Pillay had said Boko Haram had grown “increasingly monstrous” in its actions. She said that the group is now targeting some people because of their religion and occupation – “and in this case, simply because the girls were enrolled in school”. The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), whose spokesperson Christophe Boulierac was also participating in the briefing, said the agency had underscored in earlier statements that such acts of violence were “absolutely unacceptable, and represented a crime against international law”. The UN World Food Programme’s (WFP) Elisabeth Byrs added that the right to education was a fundamental one and that “young girls had to be allowed to attend school”, which WFP encourages. Last year, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) reported that there is reason to believe that Boko Haram had committed crimes against humanity, referring to reports of murder and persecution. read more

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Emery responds to Gazidis rumors

first_imgThere is some speculation that Ivan Gazidis will leave his Arsenal position to join Italian Lega Serie A club AC MilanThere has been some media speculation that Arsenal’s chief executive Ivan Gazidis will leave the English Premier club in the following weeks.Gazidis has been linked to a move to Italian Lega Serie A giants AC Milan.But according to The Gunners boss Unai Emery, he’s unsure of the 54-years-old future but they everytime they meet they just talk Arsenal.Cristiano Ronaldo, Nemanja Vidic, Manchester UnitedVidic: “Ronaldo is the most professional footballer I’ve seen” Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Nemanja Vidic opened up on how a 21-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo’s professionalism left him stunned at Manchester United.“First of all, every conversation with him is speaking about us and about our work here every day,” the Spaniard said to The Daily Star.“I don’t know any other news from him. Every conversation with me is speaking about us [Arsenal].”“About our performance. About our ideas. Our process. [About] his future, we didn’t speak. I think it’s a question for him,” Emery added.Meanwhile, Italian media report the chief executive is close to signing for AC Milan, but there’s no official news yet.last_img read more

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AlexanderArnold wants to recover spot on starting XI

first_imgThe 20-year-old Liverpool right-back believes the injury sustained against Brighton and Hove Albion is in the past now.On January 12, Trent Alexander-Arnold suffered a knee injury while Liverpool played against Brighton and Hove Albion.And the 20-year-old spent almost a month without playing, until last Saturday, when he came off the bench in the 3-0 win over Bournemouth in the English Premier League.Now that he’s back, he wants to show he can recover his position in the starting eleven with the Reds.“I feel good; it was good to get a bit of fitness in there at the weekend and that’ll help me get back to full fitness and to push on and hopefully start a few games in the next few weeks,” he was quoted by Sky Sports.“It was something I’ve never really experienced before in being injured.”“It was something new and something to get my head around, so it was tough to me. But it’s thanks to the manager, the physios and the medical department in helping me get back so quickly – ahead of schedule.”“It was difficult because you feel like you’ve got no control at all, whereas when you’re on the pitch, you have a little bit the sense of being able to influence the game, impact the game in some way,” he added.Harry Maguire, Manchester UnitedLiverpool legend Nicol slams Harry Maguire’s Man United form Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Steve Nicol believes Harry Maguire has made some “horrendous mistakes” recently, and has failed to find his best form since joining Manchester United.“It was difficult for me knowing I wasn’t going to be able to influence the games at all, but I was there and trying to support the lads as well as I could.”“We didn’t get the results we wanted, but we remained undefeated and bounced back at the weekend with three points,” he concluded.Trent Alexander-Arnold is a product of the Liverpool youth system that he joined in 2004.In 2016 he played with the senior team for the first time, debuting in the professional stage.Warming up for the rest of the season 🔥⚽️ @LFC pic.twitter.com/Cn0kQ6R4FY— Trent Arnold (@trentaa98) February 12, 2019last_img read more

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Theres Still Time to Apply for the 2015 ASA DuPont Young Leader

first_imgThe American Soybean Association (ASA) and DuPont are seeking applicants for the 2015 Young Leader Program. Interested applicants can apply by clicking here.  The ASA DuPont Young Leader program has a long standing tradition of identifying and cultivating farmer leaders who not only help shape U.S. soybean industry but all of agriculture.  Through the training, participants strengthen leadership skills while building valuable grower networks with farmer leaders from around the country.The 2015 class of ASA DuPont Young Leaders will participate in a two-phase training program beginning with a session Nov. 18 – 21, 2014 at DuPont Pioneer’s Headquarters in Johnston, Iowa. Young Leaders will continue their training in Phoenix, Ariz. Feb. 24 – 28, 2015. While in Phoenix, Young Leaders will also have the opportunity to participate in Commodity Classic.The program has a long standing tradition of identifying and cultivating farmer leaders who not only help shape U.S. soybean industry but all of agriculture. Through the training, participants strengthen leadership skills while building valuable grower networks with farmer leaders from around the country.ASA, its 26 state affiliates, including the Grain Farmers of Ontario and DuPont Pioneer will work together to identify the top producers to represent their state as part of this program. One couple or individual per state will be chosen to participate.last_img read more

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Dad builds wheelchairfriendly igloo for children with special needs

first_imgCINCINNATI (WSVN) — A father is melting hearts across the internet after he unveiled his specially built igloo that is wheelchair-accessible.Greggory Eichhorn built the giant igloo for his kids to enjoy. He and his wife adopted nine kids with special needs, and two of them Zahara and Elijah use wheelchairs.“It didn’t feel like a big deal. All of our kids, since they come from different places, we really just we love adoption.”Not wanting them to feel left out, he came up with the idea of an igloo equipped with a handicap-accessible entrance.A friend shared the story online and it has since gone viral.Eichhorn hopes his story will spur others to open up their hearts to adoption.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

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WOW Accepting Applications From Wilmington Families In Need Of Holiday Gift Assistance

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — We’re One Wilmington is currently accepting applications from individuals and families in need of holiday gift support. Applications are due by November 19.If you or someone you know is in need of a helping hand this holiday, please complete the Holiday Gift Assistance form and return the completed and signed application with photo ID and proof of residency.For those wishing to purchase gifts for a family this holiday, WEF will be adding them to the Volunteer page on its website as they come in, as well as tagging them on their Angel Giving Tree during the Festival of Trees. Be sure to check both places.(NOTE: The above announcement is from We’re One Wilmington’s latest e-newsletter.)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… RelatedWe’re One Wilmington Accepting Applications From Wilmington Families In Need Of Holiday Gift AssistanceIn “Community”QUESTION OF THE DAY: Do You Know A Wilmington Family Who Needs Holiday Gift Assistance?In “Question of the Day”We’re One Wilmington Collecting Christmas Presents For 20 Local Families In NeedIn “Community”last_img read more

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Ousted Military Affairs Official Returns As Senate Media Strategist

first_imgA recently ousted military affairs official has been hired by the Alaska Senate Majority to guide their media strategy. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez reports.Download AudioMcHugh Pierre was asked in September to step down as deputy commissioner of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, as part of then-Gov. Sean Parnell’s attempts to reform the Alaska National Guard. His resignation came shortly after the release of a federal report that concluded the Guard suffered from leadership failures and a toxic command climate. The next month, Pierre established a public relations firm, Quantum Communications. Pierre has now been brought on to help the Senate’s Republican majority caucus in their communications with the press.Senate President Kevin Meyer made the hire, and he considers it essential.“It’s only 90 days, but we need all the help we can to get our message out to the general public and to our constituents,” said Meyer in a phone interview.Last month, Meyer joined other legislative leaders in calling upon Gov. Bill Walker to enact a staffing freeze in response to a multi-billion-dollar budget shortfall. Because his caucus’ press office had a vacancy, Meyer does not see that order conflicting with Pierre’s hire. He added Pierre will not be on payroll as a state worker, but instead will be awarded a four-month contract paid out of the Senate Majority’s funds. The contract has not yet been signed, but Meyer said it will not exceed $35,000. Anything over that amount requires a vote of the 14-member Legislative Council.“My expectation would be it would be closer to $30,000,” said Meyer.Meyer said he interviewed other candidates for the position before reaching out to Pierre. He added that he asked his colleagues if they took issue with the hire. Sen. Anna MacKinnon, an Eagle River Republican who will co-chair the finance committee, noted that Pierre was married to her chief of staff, but did not find that to be a problem. Meyer said MacKinnon’s office was not involved with the hire, nor was his own spouse, who is a special assistant in military affairs commissioner’s office.“Absolutely not,” said Meyer. “My wife is so not political that she didn’t even know about it until I mentioned it to her last night.”Though Pierre started off as a television reporter, he’s spent the bulk of his career in state government. He managed public affairs for former Gov. Frank Murkowski, and did similar work for the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. He also served as a spokesperson for the Alaska Republican Party.When Pierre stepped down from his deputy commissioner post in September, his letter listed his accomplishments and said he was ready for “new adventures in the private sector.” But it didn’t make any reference to problems in the Alaska National Guard, which reached a crisis level during the Parnell administration.Parnell did not provide a reason for Pierre’s dismissal, except to say it was connected to his National Guard reform effort. Records released in response to a lawsuit by Alaska Public Media and the Alaska Dispatch News contain a June e-mail from Parnell to his top aides, ordering that Pierre “have absolutely nothing to do with cases where Guard members are under investigation or subject to review – especially as they relate to two people he is personally connected to” after Pierre reportedly involved himself in a former classmate’s disciplinary matter. Separately, chaplains, who had confronted the governor and legislators about the mishandling of sexual assault in the Alaska National Guard, have complained that Pierre directed them to sign a confidentiality agreement.Sen. Kevin Meyer said he considered Pierre’s resignation when deciding to award him the contract, but that he could not find concrete information that Pierre acted inappropriately.“I’ve asked around to try to figure out what he’s been accused of or what he’s guilty of, and nobody knows,” said Meyer. “So I don’t how much of that was political hype, and how much of that is reality. But certainly if we find out that if he was involved in any way that’s illegal, then yeah, we would terminate his contract immediately.”In a phone interview, Pierre said his removal was part of a larger program to change Guard leadership.“I was asked to resign because the governor was ready to have someone new in that position. You serve at the governor’s pleasure, and it was clear that he didn’t want the senior leadership to stay,” said Pierre. “I never did anything wrong. I don’t believe the organization did any wrong. I think the organization did everything it could to support its members.”Pierre will work directly out of Meyer’s office. The other members of the press shop will handle day-to-day operations, while Pierre will focus on the broader communications strategy.“We’ll be coordinating the message plan,” said Pierre. “The voters sent the right people to Juneau, and I want to make sure they’re effective in communicating to the voters what they’re trying to do and how they’re trying to do it.”Going into the legislative session, a number of lawmakers say reforming the Alaska National Guard is a priority. The federal report by the National Guard Bureau’s Office of Complex Investigations found that Alaska guardsmen were reluctant to report cases of sexual assault because of a lack of trust in the system, and that the Alaska force has problems with favoritism and fraud. Senate Judiciary Chair Lesil McGuire, an Anchorage Republican, has expressed interest in holding National Guard hearings, and Gov. Bill Walker is currently screening candidates for a special investigator position.Pierre said he will not handle communications strategy related to the Alaska National Guard.last_img read more

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Cops told to respond calls promptly in crimeprone areas

first_imgVikarabad: District Special Branch Inspector Venkateshwarlu conducted vertical awareness training programme with the officials of petrol car, here at district headquarters on Sunday. Speaking on the occasion, the inspector told them to be sincere, dedicated and get along well with people and complainants and should also have sound knowledge over the technology. He told them to respond to the calls promptly and patrol in the crime-prone areas.Mominpet Inspector Nagesh was appointed as vertical in-charge for the patrol car. CCS Inspector Srinivas Rao and vertical officers of petrol car from various stations were present.last_img read more

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Union Budget 2017 Highlights of railway budget withdrawal of service charge on

first_imgAfter uncertainty over whether Budget 2017 would go ahead due former union minister E Ahamed’s death, it was decided that it would go ahead as scheduled on Wednesday. This is the first time the rail budget has been a part of the Union budget.Also read: Live Union Budget 2017: Here is FM Arun Jailtley’s speech, top highlightsCapital and developmental expenditure for FY2018 for Indian Railways increased to Rs 1,31,000 crore from Rs 1,21,000 crore in FY2017.The rail budget focussed on rail safety and improving infrastructure. Apart from allocating a massive corpus for rail safety the railways is also looking to eliminate unmanned broad guage to increase safety. The Finance Minister announced some perks for those who do digital bookings through IRCTC. The government is also going big on changing to clean energy sources. The Indian Railways will also be looking to increase its network this year. The railways, which already employees one third of Union government employees, is working to increase job creation with a new metro rail policy. It is also looking to create more differently-abled friendly stations. “Unified budget provides an opportunity for integrated transport solutions by synergising rail, road & waterways transportation investments,” Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said. “Railways will integrate end to end transport solutions for selected commodities through partnership,” he added. Here are 13 things Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced in his rail budget 1. Rail safety fund with corpus of Rs 100,000 crore will be created over a period of five years. 2. A new metro rail policy will be announced, which will open up new jobs for youth. 3. Atleast 25 stations expected to be awarded during 2017-183. 500 stations to be made differently abled-friendly by providing lifts and escalators. 6. Unmanned broad gauge to be eliminated by 2020. 7. As much as 3,500 km railway lines to be commissioned in 2017. 8. Dedicated trains for pilgrims will be launched. 9. As many as 7,000 railway stations to be solar powered. Already 300 stations have been solar powered. 10. All coaches of the Indian Railways will have bio-toilets by 2019. 11. Cashless transaction has gone up from 58 percent to 68 percent. 12. Service charge for those booking through IRCTC to be removed. 13. IRCTC, IRCON to be listed this year.last_img read more

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Gaibandha law enforcers resume Antiterrorism drive

first_imgLaw enforcers resumed anti-terrorism drive in the remote char areas of Saghata upazila in the district on Saturday aiming to prevent subversive activities, reports news agency UNB.The raid conducted by members of district police, Detective Branch (DB) of police and a team of Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit, began around 4:00am and suspended at 8:00am for today.After a day gap on Friday, the joint forces have again started the anti-terrorism drive in the upazila, said Mashrukur Rahman Khalek, superintendent of Gaibandha police, adding that the drive was a part of regular anti-terrorism drive.During today’s raid, none was detained and nothing was recovered from the scene, he also said.On Tuesday night, the joint forces launched the drive and raided different chars of the Teesta, Jamuna and Brahmaputra rivers in Fulchari, Sadar, Sundarganj and Saghata upazilas of Gaibandha, Islampur upazila of Jamalpur district, Sariakandi upazila of Bogra district and Chilmari upazila of Kurigram.Later, the law enforcers suspended their drive on Thursday afternoon.last_img read more