Four campaigning disabled models have set up a petition to demand that ministers address the “blatant disablism” within the fashion industry.They want the government to punish the industry for its failure to meet its legal obligations under the Equality Act.The four disabled women – Chelsey Jay, Elesha Turner, Katie Knowles and Gemma Flanagan (pictured, from left to right, outside parliament) – are members of Models of Diversity (MoD), a campaigning group which wants the fashion industry to use a more diverse range of models.They have launched the petition on the UK parliament’s website, and hope to gain 100,000 signatures within the next six months, which should ensure the issue is debated in the House of Commons.They want to see a change in attitudes within the fashion industry so that its use of disabled models reflects the proportion of disabled people in the population.Jay, director of disability at MoD, said: “I want every sixth model in shows to have a disability. The same goes for advertising campaigns.“We certainly want punishment for people who don’t do this. The fashion industry aren’t going to change [if there are no penalties] because there are no ramifications for not doing it.“I think a whole demographic of society is being completely excluded. People are growing up with this idea that disabled people aren’t normal, they aren’t part of anything. That is so damaging.”She added: “The modelling agencies say they can’t take on a disabled model because they won’t get the work, and the brands say there aren’t any disabled models on the books of the agencies.”Jay said she is “literally laughed at in my face” by the industry, including designers, fashion brands, modelling agencies and advertisers, when she suggests they should use disabled models regularly.She said: “We have got the legislation, the Equality Act, but for some reason it doesn’t apply to the fashion industry.“The government needs to apply this legislation. They have to regulate it. No change will happen unless all of these people accept responsibility.”When told about the campaign, Justin Tomlinson, the minister for disabled people, said: “Models of Diversity raise an important issue about equality in the fashion industry and I thank Disability News Service for bringing the campaign to my attention.“I will look closely at this and see what action we may be able to take to address the challenges faced by people with disabilities working as, or aspiring to work as, models.”Jay, who welcomed the minister’s response, said they wanted to do something very different to other campaigns, which have seen brands – particularly in the US – use a single disabled model in a “tokenistic” way.She said: “That is just not what we are about. We don’t want [people] to feel sorry for us. We are saying, ‘These people are disabled and they want a job, they are employable.’“We don’t want special treatment, we want the same treatment. The tokenistic stuff – even though the designers might have their hearts in the right place – is so damaging to the bigger picture.”Jay said attitudes within the fashion industry were “quite shocking”.One industry person MoD met with explained that they couldn’t use disabled people all the time because “it’s like sometimes we can’t have people with brown hair, it’s not always in fashion”.Other companies tell Jay: “We don’t see why there’s a problem, because three months ago we used a child with a disability.”But Jay said there was hope that the campaign could be making some headway, with MoD in discussions with next year’s London Fashion Week to hold a show, backed by a designer brand, which would feature a diverse range of models, including some who are disabled.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is facing questions over why it failed to release the results of a pilot project that was supposed to correct a fatal flaw in its “fitness for work” test.DWP had promised a judge that the pilot project would test ways of making the work capability assessment (WCA) safer for claimants with mental health conditions and learning difficulties, by ensuring that the necessary medical evidence was collected from their healthcare professionals.Many disabled people claiming out-of-work disability benefits have been unable to prove they could not work because the WCA process has been focused on an unfair and discriminatory face-to-face assessment, and they were unable to provide enough written evidence to back up their cases.Ministers promised a tribunal appeal hearing two years ago that they would carry out the pilot project, but nine months after it ended they do not appear to have passed on its findings to the lawyers representing the two disabled people who took the long-running legal case, or even informed them that the pilot project had finished.The Mental Health Resistance Network (MHRN), the user-led group that was behind the legal case, said this week that this apparent failure was “extraordinary”.Denise McKenna, MHRN’s co-founder, said this suggested that DWP had not addressed the WCA’s fatal flaws.She said: “I am not confident that what they have come up with is going to be robust enough, that it’s going to include other medical evidence in enough cases.“The other thing is I am not confident that they will pay any heed to the medical evidence anyway. They just don’t want to take account of medical evidence.“They just want everything to be resting on that Mickey Mouse interview, that Mickey Mouse assessment.”MHRN and other activists believe that many disabled benefit claimants – particularly those with mental health conditions – have lost their lives because of DWP’s failure to collect all the medical evidence necessary when assessing whether people were eligible for employment and support allowance (ESA).The legal case had concluded that the WCA discriminated against some disabled people with mental health conditions and learning difficulties.DWP has now admitted that it completed this pilot project – which took place in Glasgow – last May.DWP only admitted that the pilot project had been completed in a response to a Disability News Service (DNS) story about Mark Wood, a disabled man who starved to death after he was found “fit for work”.His mother, Jill Gant, had questioned why DWP had still failed to act on the issue of further medical evidence, nearly seven years after a coroner in another case had warned ministers that they needed to address the problem, or risk other disabled people losing their lives.She had tried for two years to persuade DWP ministers Mark Harper and Priti Patel to act.Wood died in the summer of 2013, more than three years after the coroner’s letter to DWP ministers.His mother blames his death on the failure of DWP and Atos assessors to collect the medical evidence needed to demonstrate that he was eligible for ESA.A DWP spokesman said the department had updated guidance for the assessors who carry out WCAs – now carried out by the US company Maximus, rather than Atos – but that he could not say how the guidance had changed.He said: “The outcomes have been that we’ve updated our general practices and guidance for assessments, which fits in with our ongoing process to ensure the WCA provides the right service for claimants.“The new guidance provides examples of situations when further evidence should be requested by healthcare professionals in the WCA process, especially for people with a mental health condition.”But he said he could not release the new version because the department was “currently in the midst of discussing guidance and the training for healthcare professionals with our provider”.
Tags:Labour Party /Labour /TSSA /Fleur Anderson /wandsworth /Candida Jones /People’s Vote /Bonnie Craven /Leonie Cooper / Selection meeting is tomorrow. Thanks for all the support so far. I’ll campaign with all #Labour members, local residents, and community groups to win in Putney, Southfields and Roehampton. We can work together to rebalance our society in favour of the many and not the few. pic.twitter.com/LgfMAQn787— Fleur Anderson (@CllrFleur) November 23, 2018 Labour members in Putney have chosen local councillor Fleur Anderson as their parliamentary candidate in the next election.The Wandsworth councillor’s success will be seen as a victory for those campaigning within Labour for a fresh Brexit referendum, as she is a firm ‘people’s vote’ supporter. Putney voted heavily to remain in the 2016 public vote.Anderson, who co-founded Wandsworth Welcomes Refugees, is now expected to step down as joint deputy leader of Wandsworth Labour.The new PPC was congratulated on Twitter by south London MPs Marsha de Cordova and Dr Rosena Allin-Khan.I’m honoured and delighted to have been selected to be the next #Labour Parliamentary candidate for #Putney. Thanks to @LeonieC @candidaj and @BonnieCraven for such a positive campaign. @LondonLabour @PutneyLabour pic.twitter.com/hmUea6uWKm— Fleur Anderson (@CllrFleur) November 24, 2018The result came as a surprise to many local activists. Bonnie Craven was understood to have been the Labour leadership’s preferred candidate. A trade union officer at TSSA with experience of running as an MP, Craven was backed by many frontbenchers including Angela Rayner, Richard Burgon, Barry Gardiner, Andrew Gwynne, plus Chris Williamson, Emma Dent-Coad and Owen Jones.The other shortlisted candidates, Wandsworth councillors Leonie Cooper and Candida Jones, are both ‘people’s vote’ supporters. Cooper was backed by Assembly Members such as Len Duvall and Florence Eshalomi, while co-deputy group leader Jones was endorsed by London mayor Sadiq Khan.Last year, former Lambeth mayor Neeraj Patil slashed Greening’s majority from 10,180 to 1,554 votes, making Putney a marginal seat and a key target for Labour at the next election.Full House for our selection meeting fantastic turnout. pic.twitter.com/McPhWirynb— Putney Labour Party (@PutneyLabour) November 24, 2018
Family and friends of three men shot by police officers visited the sites of the shootings in a Sunday morning procession they dubbed the “River of Sorrows.”The procession is part of an ongoing effort to keep the shootings in the public eye and to foster a sense of community among their families.The extended family of Luis Demetrio Gongora Pat, a 45-year-old Mexican – Mayan immigrant and restaurant worker who had been living in a homeless encampment on Shotwell Street when he was shot by police on April 7th of this year, joined a public action for the first time. Though politely reserved with their statements out of respect for Gongora’s wife, two family members expressed their frustration with the situation.“I’m still not prepared in my head for this, but I am grateful for all of those who are supporting us” said Gongora’s cousin, Luis Poot Pat. “With time, hopefully we will know more about what happened here…The police doesn’t want to give us any information. The only information is what [we] heard from the police town hall.” Tags: police shooting Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0% 0% Evelyn del Rosario Poot Balam, the 11-year-old daughter of Gongora’s other cousin Carlos Poot Pat, reacted to the news of Gongora’s death with a poem, which organizer Adriana Camarena read aloud on her behalf at the site of Gongora’s death.“I hope the freaking police are reading this,” she wrote. “The Latinos police have killed also want to defend their lives.”In her poem, Evalyn wrote that she did not cry the first time she heard about Gongora’s death. At the scene of the death, however, she couldn’t hold back a few tears.Gongora’s extended family joined Elvira and Refugio Nieto, the parents of 2014 police shooting victim Alex Nieto, and neighbors of Amilcar Perez Lopez, a 20-year-old Guatemalan immigrant who lived and was shot by officers on Folsom Street on Feb. 26th, 2015.“For me, Amilcar Perez Lopez and Luis Gongora Pat are very connected,” said Florencia Rojo, who was Perez Lopez’ neighbor and a driving force behind the neighborhood’s investigation of the incident and subsequent efforts to push for criminal charges from the District Attorney’s office.Perez Lopez, an independent autopsy and a city autopsy both confirmed, was shot in the back – a fact which activists say disproves the police claim that he had lunged at officers with a knife.“When I heard about Luis Gongora Pat and I heard the police version of events, I thought, I’ve heard this story before. It’s not even a different lie – it’s the same lie,” Rojo said.After the shooting, police said Gongora had been brandishing a knife. Officers had reportedly been called to the scene by members of a Homeless Outreach Team because Gongora had been swinging his knife at a tree. Police said they first shot him with first beanbags, then bullets. Camarena said, however, that security video, an excerpt of which was released to the San Francisco Chronicle, showed the officers shooting Gongora and also showed several unfazed individuals and a police cruiser passing by where Gongora was sitting in the minutes before his death.Unlike many recent protests calling for major changes in police use of force and demanding criminal charges against officers, Sunday’s action was more of a healing ceremony. Already, protesters and a hunger strike by five activists effectively contributed to Mayor Ed Lee’s decision this month to ask for Police Chief Greg Suhr’s resignation.Camarena called it the “River of Sorrows” after Mission Dolores Creek, which runs under what is now 18th Street. She compared the creek, now hidden out of sight except for a few places like in the basements of the Armory and Mission High School, to the flood of suffering of those who experience loss, poverty, displacement, and police use of force. The walk from one shooting site to the next further emphasized the metaphor.“With everything going on, it felt like it was a way to honor Luis, but also to have the families walk together,” Camarena said.Children rode their scooters or were carried by their parents. A mandolin player led some in the procession in songs. Refugio Nieto, father of police shooting victim Alex Nieto, told the story of the dog his son had left behind, Lil’ Mama – and how he rechristened her, more appropriately in his estimation, “La Gorda,” or Fatty. He thanked supporters and Gongora’s family for joining him again.“This process will be long, it will take lots of time, but here we are” Refugio Nieto told a group gathered at Bernal Heights Park, where his son had been killed.At the end of the two-and-a-half-mile procession, and a noon mass at Mission Dolores Basilica, more of Gongora’s family members awaited the group with a Yucatecan feast, with masses of slow-cooked pork known as cochinita pibil as a centerpiece.“When this happened, I thought we were alone,” Luis Poot Pat said. “At the beginning we didn’t have help from anyone…my family, now, is you all.”
0% Photo by Sawsan Morrar“People are just waking up to the fact that we are privileged,” attendee Dace James Hines said. “The plea for allies is strong, but a lot of people don’t know where to start.”Let’s Take Action, an organization that supports Black Lives Matter, started as a Facebook post. Morgenstern, also a local filmmaker, asked friends what could be done after Alton Sterling and Philando Castile were shot and killed by Baton Rouge, Louisiana and St. Anthony, Minnesota police in two separate incidents this year. Morgenstern called their deaths “a precipitating incident.”“It brought into the limelight what a crucial and vital issue this is right now,” Morgenstern said. “I think it was the point where a lot of people stood up said, ‘I can’t take this anymore. All the other priorities I have in my life are not as nearly as important as addressing this horribly racist system.’”The organizers focus on education through reading groups and discussions, resource mapping, and calls to action.Let’s Take Action has only had three meetings since its early summer launch, including one earlier this year also at Gray Area. But many attendees have done their research, including “The New Jim Crow” by Michelle Alexander and attending nearby protests. Harmon said it’s important for people to take the steps to “unlearn and relearn” and look at their society from a different perspective.When asked how he felt about being the only black attendee, and as the speaker nonetheless, Harmon laughed.“People who look like me don’t have the free space and time to even think about attending the movement because they are so busy trying to survive,” he said. “Someone who allies with the movement should take into consideration what allows them the opportunities to be in that space, and why others that don’t look like them don’t make it to those spaces.”But Harmon and others think the “safe space” is important. Organizer Michelle Lessans recalled how awkward the first meetings were for attendees, and that’s exactly how organizers intended to make it.“We are not taught to talk about race, we are not used to being uncomfortable,” Lessans said. Some attendees shared actions or microaggressive comments they have made that would make them racist or bias.“It’s a place for you to shift your perspective without the fear of people judging you,” Hines said. “We cannot expect black leadership to hold our hand through that or to take a lead in guiding conversations. We have to have that conversation ourselves.”Let’s Take Action meets next on Tuesday, October 11 and will discuss skills for navigating tough conversations about race. Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0% San Francisco tech workers and their friends packed the Gray Area Art & Technology Theater on Tuesday in an effort to talk about one thing: racism.“How many of you get stopped at the airport?” Marquis Harmon asked.Harmon addressed the largely white audience of about 40 people, discussing racism against the black community and the prison industrial complex. He was the only black person in the theater.Michael Morgenstern, a tech worker and organizer of the event, acknowledges that many of the attendees have one thing in common: some level of privilege. And that is largely acknowledged in the various meetings and readings groups the organization hosts.
SAINTS face Widnes and Castleford in important friendlies over the next two weeks with their eyes set firmly on the Betfred Super League opener with Leeds.Keiron Cunningham’s men will lock horns with the Rhinos on Thursday February 9 – and it’s a clash the head coach is looking forward to.“At this time of year it is all about us and making sure we are heading in the right direction on and off the field,” he said. “There’s only so much you can take out of pre-season and Leeds will be in a similar position. What we do know is that they will be fit after having lots of injuries last year.“But we aren’t a bad side ourselves and with the recruits we have brought in we are a better side than last season.“We wouldn’t want a better opening to the season. We want to sink our teeth into the comp from round one and therefore there isn’t a juicer tie than Leeds at the Totally Wicked Stadium.”Cunningham is expected to run with a large squad for Sunday’s clash before whittling it down to around 21 or 22 for the game with Castleford.Tickets for those games – and the opener – are now on sale from the Ticket Office, by calling 01744 455 052 or online here.
WWAY news station in Leland. (Photo: WWAY) LELAND, NC (WWAY) — At the end of April WWAY began broadcasting from our new state-of-the-art facility in Leland.This weekend is your chance to go behind the scenes.- Advertisement – WWAY is holding a grand opening Saturday.You’ll be able to meet some members of the WWAY team and get a tour around the studio.It’s from noon until 2 p.m. at 1224 Magnolia Village Way in Leland.
00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave Settings BURGAW, N.C. (WWAY) — A Burgaw family has completely recovered a sunken sailboat that they discovered at the bottom of the Cape Fear River.“Turns out that when boats go underwater and the boat goes down, so does the price,” said Edwards.- Advertisement – Most people would not jump to buy a sunken sailboat. But for Trevor Edwards, it was an underwater treasure, and the boat his family always wanted.“Coming up and down the area with our boat, we had noticed the sailboat and said it’d have a nice interior and a place to sleep and spend the night on the water. And we always have to go home at the end of the day, so we thought it’d be a good idea to look into maybe getting a sailboat one day,” said Edwards.When they found out the boat had sunk, Edwards thought it was the perfect time to buy. But his family was pretty skeptical.Related Article: By the numbers: Reasons why Florence was a historic storm“My wife claimed that I had bought a submarine, not a sailboat. And my son told me I’d bought a catfish trap,” said Edwards.The boat was entirely submerged, only being held up by ropes that still hold it in place today. But Edwards’ whole family dove in and dragged the boat all the way up in just one day.Their 37 ft. gem will have two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a kitchen. The family cannot wait to hop on and spend their nights out on the lake.“We got to work together and create an accomplishment that we’ll remember for a lifetime. So it’ll be something that we can all use throughout the future and have a good time, hopefully make a lot more good family memories with it,” said Edwards.These memories are now possible because Edwards was not afraid to get his feet wet.
Each Care Fair takes place in the parking lot of Walmart from 5-8 p.m. This Thursday, it is in Southport. On September 18, it will be in Shallotte.There will be eye glass adjustments, dental consultations, A1c screens, blood pressure screens, mammography screens, giveaways, a kid zone with fun and educational activities and grocery store tours where individuals go around the grocery store and get tips on how to eat healthy on a budget.The events are free to attend and BWC said if you don’t have insurance, you will still be seen.Related Article: Mom to Mom: Weekday MealsFor more information, follow Brunswick Wellness Center on Facebook.BWC was made possible by a grant from the Duke Endowment. Brunswick County was 1 of 10 counties in NC to receive the funding and be part of the Healthy People, Healthy Carolinas initiative. 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave Settings BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The Brunswick Wellness Coalition is working to provide access to healthcare services and education after normal business hours with multiple Care Fairs across the county.The purpose of the Brunswick Wellness Coalition is to promote healthy eating and active living to prevent the onset of disease and help people better live a better quality life.- Advertisement –
In September 1999, Hurricane Floyd came ashore near Cape Fear as a Category 2 storm that dumped about 2 feet of water on a region already soaked days earlier by Hurricane Dennis. The result was the worst natural disaster in state history, a flood that killed dozens of people and left whole towns underwater, their residents stranded on rooftops.The bloated carcasses of hundreds of thousands of hogs, chickens and other drowned livestock bobbed in a nose-stinging soup of fecal matter, pesticides, fertilizer and gasoline so toxic that fish flopped helplessly on the surface to escape it. Rescue workers smeared Vick’s Vapo-Rub under their noses to try to numb their senses against the stench.Florence is forecast to make landfall in the same region as a significantly stronger storm.Related Article: Heading to Wrightsville? Parking could soon cost you more“This one is pretty scary,” said Jamie Kruse, director of the Center for Natural Hazards Research at East Carolina University. “The environmental impacts will be from concentrated animal feeding operations and coal ash pits. Until the system gets flushed out, there’s going to be a lot of junk in the water.”North Carolina has roughly 2,100 industrial-scale pork farms containing more than 9 million hogs — typically housed in long metal sheds with grated floors designed to allow the animals’ urine and feces to fall through and flow into nearby open-air pits containing millions of gallons of untreated sewage.During Floyd, dozens of these lagoons either breached or were overtopped by floodwaters, spilling the contents. State taxpayers ended up buying out and closing 43 farms located in floodplains.To prepare for Florence, the North Carolina Pork Council says its members have pumped down lagoon levels to absorb at least 2 feet of rain. Low-lying farms have been moving their hogs to higher ground.“Our farmers and others in the pork industry are working together to take precautions that will protect our farms, our animals and our environment,” said Brandon Warren, the pork council’s president and a hog farmer. “The preparations for a hurricane began long before the past few hours or days. Our farmers take hurricane threats extremely seriously.”The Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday that it would be monitoring nine toxic waste cleanup sites near the Carolinas coast for potential flooding. More than a dozen such Superfund sites in and around Houston flooded last year in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, with spills of potentially hazardous materials reported at two.Also of concern are more than two dozen massive coal ash pits operated by Duke Energy, the state’s primary electricity provider. The gray ash that remains after coal is burned contains potentially harmful amounts of mercury, arsenic and lead.Since power plants need vast amounts of water to generate steam, their unlined waste pits are located along lakes and rivers. Some of the pits were inundated during past storms, including during Floyd and Hurricane Matthew in 2016.After a 2014 spill at a Duke plant coated 70 miles of the Dan River in toxic gray sludge, state regulators forced the Charlotte-based company to begin phasing out its coal ash pits by 2029. Because that work was already underway, wastewater levels inside the ash ponds have been falling, Duke Energy spokesman Bill Norton said Tuesday.“We’re more prepared than ever,” said Norton, adding that crews will be monitoring water levels at the pits throughout the storm.The company is also preparing for potential shutdown of nuclear reactors at least two hours before the arrival of hurricane-force winds. Duke operates 11 reactors at six sites in the Carolinas, including the Brunswick Nuclear Plant located south of Wilmington near the mouth of the Cape Fear River.The Brunswick plant’s two reactors are of the same design as those in Fukushima, Japan, that exploded and leaked radiation following a 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Following that disaster, federal regulators required all U.S. nuclear plants to perform upgrades to better withstand earthquakes and flooding.The Nuclear Regulatory Commission said Wednesday its inspectors were on-site at nuclear plants in the storm’s path, monitoring the preparations. Regulators have also been in contact with personnel at Global Nuclear Fuels-America, a Wilmington plant that manufactures fuel rods for nuclear power plants.Duke Energy did not respond to requests for information about specific changes made at Brunswick, other than to say emergency generators and pumps will remove stormwater at the plant if it floods. The company issued assurances this week that it is ready for Florence, which is predicted to pack winds of up to 130 mph (209 kph) and a 13-foot storm surge.“They were safe then. They are even safer now,” said Kathryn Green, a Duke spokeswoman, referring to the post-Fukushima improvements. “We have backups for backups for backups.” Hurricane Florence’s heavy rains could cause an environmental disaster in North Carolina, where waste from hog manure pits, coal ash dumps and other industrial sites could wash into homes and threaten drinking water supplies.Computer models predict up to 3 feet of rain in the southeastern corner of the state, a fertile low-lying plain veined by brackish rivers with a propensity for escaping their banks. Longtime locals don’t have to strain their imaginations to foresee what rain like that can do. It’s happened before.- Advertisement –