Petersburg OKs cruise fee for 2019

first_imgLocal Government | Southeast | TourismPetersburg OKs cruise fee for 2019February 28, 2018 by Joe Viechnicki, KFSK-Petersburg Share:The National Geographic ship Quest tied up to Petersburg’s drive down dock in 2017. (Photo by Nora Saks/KFSK)Petersburg will start charging a $5-a-head fee for passengers on cruise ships in 2019.Petersburg’s borough assembly gave final approval Monday to the new charge, despite a lawsuit over a similar fee in Juneau and concerns from the cruise ship industry.Audio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Among Southeast communities, Petersburg will join Juneau and Ketchikan in charging a local fee on passengers, sometimes called a head tax.Petersburg’s assembly has gone back and forth over what to call it because of concerns that the industry has sued Juneau over use of head tax money.This month they agreed to change the name back to a marine passenger fee, instead of an infrastructure fee.Eric Castro agreed to reverse course from the name change he suggested at the last meeting.“After we received a letter from our attorney, she made a good point mentioning how the term infrastructure only refers to physical structures and that we shouldn’t probably limit the way we can spend money on so severely,” Castro said. “So for example we might be able to be able to use the marine passenger fee to be able to fund training of personnel, an activities director, any type of part time position and many things that aren’t a physical building.”Cruise companies that stop in Petersburg, haven’t opposed the fee but have asked for changes.Rick Erickson of the Cruise Line Agencies of Alaska wrote to the borough asking to table the ordinance and come up with a more narrowly focused fee for infrastructure that would aid cruise ships.“The broad nature of the proposed ordinance to allow for funding of services to passengers and not just vessels is at the heart of the legal debate between Cruise Lines International Association of Alaska and the City and Borough of Juneau,” Erickson wrote.Other companies have asked for a delay in implementation, because they’ve already priced their cruises for the next two years, or ways to encourage ships to start and end their trips here.Assembly member Jeff Meucci proposed an amendment clarifying that ships starting and ending a cruise in Petersburg will only be charged once.Kurt Wohlhueter wanted to consider an exemption for boats homeported here.“We’re in a unique position right now where we could be the only community in Southeast that doesn’t charge a head tax for anybody who wants to homeport out of Petersburg and I think that’s something that we need to consider,” Wohlhueter said. “Because they’re gonna to bring that money in here, they’re gonna spend the night here, their ships are going to be moored here, we’re gonna make more money on those people then those that just do touch and gos. So instead of passing this amendment, you know we should consider, if they want to homeport here, not to charge them any head tax at all and then let main street benefit from the added income that they’re gonna spend here.”Nevertheless, Meucci’s amendment passed with only Wohlhueter voting no.Only smaller to mid-size ships stop in Petersburg, which doesn’t have a deep water port to accommodate the larger vessels.Because of that, the community only sees a few thousand passengers a year. At best, the new fee is expected to raise about $30,000 a year, not the millions paid to larger communities in Southeast.Assembly member Jeigh Stanton Gregor thought it would still pay for important improvements.“That could be great money to invest let’s say new bathrooms, more subtle infrastructure over time that could also contribute to a ship wanting to homeport here, being able to invest that back into our infrastructure for that,” Stanton Gregor said. “I know it’s not a ton of money but, we’re so limited in exactly what we can use it for it’d be a good asset for the cruise industry as well.”Use of the money will be determined by the assembly during the annual budget process, but the ordinance also includes a broad list of the types of expenditures it can go toward.Those include capital improvements for ships or their passengers, land or building purchases to help the industry, along with passenger surveys, along with personnel and equipment needed as a result of cruise ship visits.Mayor Mark Jensen didn’t want a lawsuit over Petersburg’s fee.“I just am concerned about not generating enough money,” Jensen said. “I know it would add up but I’m just worried about any kind of litigation towards the city, so I will be voting no on this.”Jensen and Wohlhueter were the only no votes and the amended fee passed on a 5-2 vote in third and final reading.It takes effect in January 2019 and will be based on passenger manifests of ships docking in Petersburg’s harbors.It also exempts ships with 20 or fewer passengers.Share this story:last_img read more

Gray Days

first_imgUncategorizedGray DaysBy Shayna Rose Arnold – December 21, 2010421ShareEmailFacebookTwitterPinterestReddItIt’s been cold and rainy the last few days, and more than once I’ve found myself repeating some subtle and surprising line, half a refrain or part of a verse from a David Gray song in my head. There’s something easy and sometimes melancholy about his music that makes it perfect listening for this kind of weather. That, and he’s been on my mind since earlier this month when I watched him tape two short but stunning sets and an interview for KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic in producer Bob Clearmountain’s Santa Monica studio.Dressed in a grey three-piece suite, the English singer-songwriter performed “Only the Wine,” “Flame Turns Blue,” and “Sea” on the acoustic guitar with his look-a-like band, then moved behind the piano for tender renditions of “Jackdaw,” “Holding On,” and “Kathleen.” But it was a solo rendition of “When I Was in Your Heart” that fully hushed the crowd of music execs, KCRW supporters, and members of the press more prone to fidgeting through shows.Between sets, Gray brightened up while talking with Jason Bentley about his family (“They are mental. That’s English for very well.”); “Foundling,” Gray’s ninth and latest studio album, recorded alongside 2009’s “Draw the Line” and released during his summer tour with Ray LaMontagne; and his hope to get back on the road with a small-venue show in February.“I’m not much in the songwriting mood at the moment,” he said. “It comes down to wanting it.”  Gray was being characteristically sincere, but it’s news I’m not taking to heart. Moods are funny. Some change with the weather.David Gray Live will air on Morning Becomes Eclectic tomorrow.Photograph by Larry Hirshowitz TAGS2010December 2010L.A. CulturePrevious articleA (Good!) Beach Traffic ReportNext articleBlack GoldShayna Rose Arnold RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHORFollow in Pee-wee Herman’s Footsteps Across L.A.What Defines a Successful Immigrant?The Undocumented Immigrants Who Are Redefining ‘American’last_img read more

Former Euromoney Global Capital worker takes on singing odyssey

first_img Show Comments ▼ Wednesday 7 October 2015 10:00 pm Former Euromoney Global Capital worker takes on singing odyssey whatsapp whatsappcenter_img Share Caitlin Morrison There’s a bit of a trend developing for breaking loose from finance to try to make it as an opera singer.First, former finance director at EY Michael Bracegirdle leapt on to the classical music scene when he played the role of villain Don Jose in a production of Carmen back in August.Now a former editor at Euromoney Global Capital has stepped up to the plate, fitting in rehearsals between editorial work ahead of the first night of new opera Ulla’s Odyssey on Sunday.Ex-special reports editor Sarah Minns was sucked into her City job when she moved to London for her singing career. She told The Capitalist: “When I moved to London, I ran out of money, and joined the team at Euromoney on their grad scheme. I did try to leave the City a few times, but you get so used to the money!”  Minns finally broke free of finance two years ago, and plays the lead role in Ulla’s Odyssey this weekend after years of sneaking into churches around the Square Mile to work on her solos. She even blasted out a few arias in the office loos. “I would wait till a Saturday when I knew there were fewer people around, but the office was a pretty good space to practice in,” she said. Apparently, there’s a whole social set of musical moneymakers flitting between Fleet Street and London’s opera houses: “It is nice when you finally get to find each other. I think many of us feel a bit trapped by the routine of an office job. There’s a lot of bankers who love classical music and opera, too, so often I’d be singing at client events and functions, and they loved it.” Perhaps serenading the foreign investors is the real way to make it in the City… More From Our Partners Supermodel Anne Vyalitsyna claims income drop, pushes for child supportnypost.comInstitutional Investors Turn To Options to Bet Against AMCvaluewalk.comRussell Wilson, AOC among many voicing support for Naomi Osakacbsnews.comPolice Capture Elusive Tiger Poacher After 20 Years of Pursuing the Huntergoodnewsnetwork.orgWhite House Again Downplays Fourth Possible Coronvirus Checkvaluewalk.comNative American Tribe Gets Back Sacred Island Taken 160 Years Agogoodnewsnetwork.orgKiller drone ‘hunted down a human target’ without being told tonypost.comAstounding Fossil Discovery in California After Man Looks Closelygoodnewsnetwork.orgBrave 7-Year-old Boy Swims an Hour to Rescue His Dad and Little Sistergoodnewsnetwork.orglast_img read more

Inside the race to diagnose cancer from a simple blood draw

first_img Newsletters Sign up for Daily Recap A roundup of STAT’s top stories of the day. Please enter a valid email address. Megan Scudellari BOSTON — It’s a medical puzzle that has snagged the attention — and the money — of Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, and venture capitalists across the nation: Is it possible to diagnose cancer from a simple blood draw?Surgical biopsies are the norm, but they’re invasive, expensive, and carry the risk of infection. So investors have poured hundreds of millions into the goal of developing “liquid biopsies.”There has been some progress: Blood analysis is now used to identify the best treatments for certain cancers — and to update treatments as the cancer mutates. But so far, no one has scored the ultimate success: diagnosing incipient cancer from a vial of blood drawn from a patient who looks and feels perfectly healthy.advertisement Related: Liquid biopsy researchers Dr. Daniel Haber and Mehmet Toner in their Boston lab. Josh Reynolds for STAT Some 38 companies in the US alone are working on liquid biopsies. Most are trying to analyze blood for fragments of DNA shed by dying tumor cells.In a lab overlooking Boston Harbor, an unlikely duo is taking a different path.advertisement Cambridge-based Exosome Diagnostics just snagged $60 million in investor funding and has already released a lung cancer liquid biopsy to detect tumor mutations via those vesicles. The company has three other tests scheduled for release this year, some of which co-analyze exosomes and ctDNA as a way to gather information from both living and dying cancer cells in the body.Haber chalks up the industry’s enthusiasm for cell-free tests to how complicated and expensive it has been to isolate rare cells from the blood. But that is changing, he said.“We’re on the cusp now of having a very standardized, affordable technology that will change the whole equation again,” he said.It’s been 10 years since Haber and Toner started this journey.“It’s time to renew our vows,” Haber joked, turning toward his friend. “You look good for an old guy.”Toner laughed, adjusting his round, black spectacles.Janssen Diagnostics, which funded the research, is pleased with the iChip emerging from their lab. “The engineering is almost ready,” Villacian, the chief medical officer, said.Though the grant has now run out, Janssen and MGH are now in talks about starting a biotech company to move the technology toward commercialization, Haber said.Currently, Haber and Toner are designing several large clinical trials to demonstrate when and where the iChip will be most useful. Their plans should be ready in, oh, two or three more cross-country flights. Companies seek to diagnose cancer from a blood sample The most current device, the “iChip,” is made of thin, lightweight plastic etched by a laser with microfluidic grooves just visible to the naked eye. This time, the chip is round, due to the fact that it is manufactured on old CD equipment.Blood first passes through a series of short rods on the chip, like a miniaturized pachinko machine. Smaller objects move more quickly, bouncing from post to post, so red blood cells and plasma are quickly sorted out and expelled as a red fluid.Chunky white blood cells and tumor cells, on the other hand, move more slowly through the channels and are funneled single-file into the next section of the chip. Here, the white blood cells, previously labeled with magnetic beads, are removed via a magnetic field and also expelled, as a milky white solution.At last, the unmarked, untagged tumor cells drip into a pristine test tube. With those cells, the world is Haber’s oyster.Vials of blood and tumor cells shuttle back and forth in the lab he and Toner share in MGH’s research facilities at Charlestown Navy Yard. They use the material in a dozen ongoing studies, studying how hormonal drugs affect prostate cancer, how immunotherapy alters tumors, and how breast cancer mutates in response to chemotherapy.“The information content from whole cells and the ability to look at how each cancer cell is different from the other is very powerful,” Haber said.A pair of machines in Haber and Toner’s lab that screen blood through a filter to extract whole tumor cells. Josh Reynolds for STAT  The fragment hypothesisBut as more researchers and biotech companies enter the field, most of them have shied away from whole cell capture. Instead, the focus is on small DNA fragments shed from dying tumor cells, called circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA).One study found that ctDNA was detectable in the blood of anywhere from half to nearly 90 percent of patients, depending on the type of cancer. The study also found that the ctDNA could be used to identify clinically relevant gene mutations, which could help oncologists select which specific medication might work best against a given tumor.California-based biotech Guardant Health — formed in 2012 and recent recipient of $100 million from eager investors — uses that technique to search for 70 actionable mutations in solid tumors.Yet another novel approach is also making waves in the field: Detecting tumor mutations via DNA, RNA, and proteins isolated from tiny vesicles called exosomes that are expelled by living cells. Shoddy biopsies deny cancer patients a shot at personalized treatment In the LabInside the race to diagnose cancer from a simple blood draw And last fall, federal regulators upbraided San Diego-based Pathway Genomics for selling a liquid biopsy kit that purported to screen healthy, at-risk individuals for early signs of cancer. The Food and Drug Administration called it “a high risk test that has not received adequate clinical validation and may harm the public health.”Nonetheless, Gates and Bezos recently teamed up with Illumina, a leading DNA sequencing company, to launch yet another liquid biopsy startup — this one ambitiously called Grail.The field is such a roller coaster that Haber and Toner make a point of being cautious and methodical.“You find strange things, you question yourself, and you test it over and over again to be sure it is right,” Haber said.Flipping haystacksIn 2006, Haber was fresh off identifying a mutation that makes lung tumors susceptible to a particular class of drugs, while Toner was testing a microfluidics technology to sort rare cells, such as fetal cells in the blood of a pregnant woman.Each had worked at Massachusetts General Hospital for over a decade without ever crossing paths, until Dr. Kurt Isselbacher, founding director of the MGH Cancer Center, brought them into his office for lunch and suggested they work together to capture tumor cells in the blood.At the time, there was one FDA-approved liquid biopsy on the market, Janssen Diagnostics’s CellSearch, a device that counts the number of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) in the blood of patients with metastatic breast, colon, and prostate cancers to predict a good or bad prognosis.But little was known about CTCs in the blood. How many were there? From what types of tumors? Could they be efficiently separated out and analyzed?“The biology of these cells was a mystery,” said Toner. Leave this field empty if you’re human: Flying without a compass, Toner and Haber worked painstakingly on the same idea that had been successful with CellSearch: “positive selection” or actively pulling cancer cells out of the blood by labeling them with sticky, specific molecules called antibodies.The first iteration of their test was a thick, rectangular silicon chip. It worked: They published a paper showing it could detect tumor cells in the blood of patients with lung, prostate, pancreatic, breast, and colon cancer. But the technology was prohibitively expensive, more than $1,000 per chip, and painfully slow — it took several days to identify one tumor cell.CTCs, it turns out, are extremely rare in the blood — an estimated one in a billion.Haber and Toner brainstormed alternative approaches from 40,000 feet in the air. Both men frequently travel to conferences and talks, so when they fly together, they’re sure to get aisle seats across from one another. That way, they can pass ideas back and forth on — what else? — cocktail napkins.“We solve a lot of problems that way,” said Toner with a happy shrug.Unless the flight attendants get in the way, Haber added pointedly.Soon, they had a solution. “Since we know everything about blood cells, we flipped the problem,” said Toner. “Instead of going after a needle in the haystack, we decided to get rid of the haystack.”In other words: They’d filter out all the healthy components of the blood and look for tumor cells left behind.It was about this time that Johnson & Johnson stepped in and offered validation — and a big check — for the duo’s efforts, committing $30 million over five years to construct the next generation of the technology. Please enter a valid email address.center_img The newest cancer therapies don’t work on everyone. Now, doctors have a clue why By Megan Scudellari March 21, 2016 Reprints Privacy Policy Related: Related: Mehmet Toner and Dr. Daniel Haber — a Turkish bioengineer and a Jewish geneticist — joined forces a decade ago, in a partnership forged over tuna sandwiches. While other scientists scan blood for scraps of tumor DNA, Toner and Haber filter out all the healthy components of the blood — then scoop up any whole tumor cells left behind.The process is costly and time-consuming. And their peers mock it as hopelessly old school.Mention the idea of capturing whole tumor cells to venture capitalists and “they roll their eyes,” said John Boyce, chief executive of Exosome Diagnostics, which recently launched a liquid biopsy test to identify lung tumor mutations.But Toner and Haber are undaunted. They’re convinced whole cells will give doctors valuable information about cancer. A fragment from a dying tumor cell, Haber said, “doesn’t tell me anything about the biology of the living tumor.”Haber and Toner use a filter made from old CD equipment in their research into liquid biopsies. Josh Reynolds for STAT A tumultuous marketIf liquid biopsies work as hoped, the market in the US alone is projected at $29 billion, according to a 2015 report from investment bank Piper Jaffray.“It is the one area of oncology you see featured at every single conference,” said Dr. Jorge Villacian, chief medical officer at Janssen Diagnostics, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, which has the sole FDA-approved liquid biopsy on the market. “There’s a great deal of enthusiasm.”And a great deal of drama.On-Q-ity, a liquid biopsy startup based in Waltham, Mass., folded in 2013. One of its investors said the technology would likely not be market-ready for another five to 10 years. Privacy Policy [email protected] Startup backed by big names aims to detect early cancer in blood Newsletters Sign up for Morning Rounds Your daily dose of news in health and medicine. About the Author Reprints Related: Tags biopsycancerdiagnostics Leave this field empty if you’re human: last_img read more

Improving health care with the simple act of listening

first_img About the Author Reprints First OpinionImproving health care with the simple act of listening Privacy Policy Please enter a valid email address. [email protected] Dr. Olveen Carrasquillo conducts a checkup at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. Joe Raedle/Getty Images The idea that more is better has many Americans going from doctor to doctor to doctor, getting test after test, and becoming increasingly anxious about our health while increasing the cost of health care.We’ve been told that a big problem with health care is inefficiency and waste. (It is.) We’ve been told that old fashioned doctoring results in huge variations of care. (It does.) We’ve been told that constant electronic nudging will make doctors better. (Maybe.) Doctors are being told they must make their productivity numbers to keep their jobs and prove they are efficient. (Sad but true.)Pioneering cardiologist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Dr. Bernard Lown has said that the usual rules of efficiency are inverted in medicine. The more time a physician spends with patients, the more efficient he or she becomes. Listening costs next to nothing, and so is infinitely more cost-effective than drugs and devices. Listening promotes healing and causes no harm. In fact, it’s the bedrock of a genuine trusting relationship — something everyone wants from their doctors and nurses. In the tone of voice, in the subtlety of the pattern of pain, in getting the sequence of events right — that’s how a correct diagnosis is made and the person emerges from the patient. If all health care providers listened better, we would save billions of dollars and transform the system. So why don’t we have the time we need to listen?Because clinicians have been put on a treadmill driven by the pitiless demands of a false concept of efficiency. Money has replaced quality care as the measure of health care. The idolatry of the market is driving a race among hospitals, insurers, and manufacturers to get bigger and bigger.To fix health care, we need a genuine democratic dialog. To start that, our society needs a massive dose of listening to understand what really matters to patients and communities.This week, close to a thousand doctors, nurses, and patient activists are making extra efforts to highlight the lost art of listening as part of Right Care Action Week, which is sponsored by the organization I run, the Lown Institute. In order to listen to Americans talk about their own health and the health care they receive, they will set up listening booths on busy streets, participate in health care “story slams,” and call patients to ask what worries them most. Tags health carelisteningRight Care Action Week @DrVikasSaini She’s calling for a health care revolution. The radical first step: listen to patients Leave this field empty if you’re human: If listening matters in the exam room, it matters even more in our society.In the early 1960s, a decade into the civil rights movement, students went to Mississippi to organize partly because it was the most difficult place in which they could imagine being successful. When they arrived, they met with scores of leaders in the churches and NAACP chapters. They solicited ideas from ordinary local people like sharecroppers and farm laborers. It was through this months-long process of intensive listening that the students learned what people wanted from the civil rights movement: “What we want is to be able to vote.” The next phase of the movement was born, and together they made history.We face a similar moment today in our efforts to fix health care. To make a difference, we must first identify what matters most to patients, health care providers, and communities. To do this, we must all learn to ask open-minded questions and listen carefully. That’s why doctors, nurses, students, patients, and community leaders are listening hard across the country this week. It’s the necessary prelude to action.Vikas Saini, MD, is a cardiologist and president of the Lown Institute in Brookline, Mass., which sponsors Right Care Action Week. Related: By Vikas Saini Oct. 17, 2016 Reprints Vikas Saini In medical school, doctors-in-training are taught that 85 percent of a diagnosis comes from a careful history, and another small portion comes from the physical exam. But these days we are so busy testing that it’s easy to miss the subtle — and sometimes not so subtle — indicators of a patient’s health. It’s certainly quicker to order the test, get some numbers, and then treat the numbers instead of the patient.The doctor-patient visit is becoming a commodified transaction rather than a collaboration. Clinical life feels more and more like sprinting on a hamster wheel, chasing unproven metrics to get graded on “quality.” It’s no wonder that burnout is exploding among physicians across the country.advertisement Newsletters Sign up for First Opinion A weekly digest of our opinion column, with insight from industry experts. Ten years ago, a woman with a heart murmur who experienced a bout of dizziness saw me for a second opinion. Another cardiologist had told her she needed open heart surgery to replace a valve in her heart. The idea of surgery terrified her, in part because she believed she would lose her job if she took time off from work. She knew she needed a new valve at some point, but hoped to put it off until she retired in eight years.Her cardiac ultrasound looked horrible and, based on that alone, qualified her for surgery. But the more I listened to her story, the more it didn’t add up. Her dizziness had been fleeting, likely from a virus. She was extremely active, exercising vigorously several times a week with absolutely no symptoms. Her pulse wasn’t worrisome, nor was sound of her heart murmur through the stethoscope. I asked her to do a treadmill exercise test, which she passed with flying colors.So I ignored the ultrasound results and listened to what my patient and her body were telling me. When I said it would be perfectly reasonable for her to wait on surgery and check in with me every six months, she overwhelmed me with her gratitude and relief, like I had commuted a death sentence. This year, 10 years later, she finally had her valve replaced.advertisementlast_img read more

Against a history of medical mistreatment, African-Americans are distrustful of hospice care

first_imgCorrection: an earlier version of this article incorrectly referred to Dr. Alvin L. Reaves’ affiliation with Emory University. It is his past employer, not his current one. By Bob Tedeschi April 5, 2017 Reprints Young women with breast cancer learn to celebrate life — and say goodbye Patrick Dillon, a Kent State University communications professor who has researched this topic, said some who opted for hospice care faced accusations of rejecting the “we-take-care-of-our-own” ethos that is common in many African-American families.“It’s caused fractured relationships with friends, family, people in the church,” he said. “There’s a social risk associated with this decision.”Dillon said that physicians who would approach African-Americans about the benefits of hospice care would do well to understand that there are often many more people affecting the decision than are visibly present.Focusing on the idea that hospice is a valuable tool for taking care of a family member — and not an abandonment — may help. It would be even better if the message were echoed by a local clergy member or another trusted member of the community who is not a physician.There’s a growing appetite for ideas like these among black doctors who serve those at life’s end. At a national meeting of palliative care and hospice clinicians in February, Dr. Alvin L. Reaves, of Regional Medical Center in Orangeburg, S.C., organized the first meeting of a group of black professionals, patients, and families in the palliative care community. “So afterwards I asked her, ‘What the hell did I do?’ And she said, ‘Ivan, you were not talking to them. You were talking to your academic staff. You have to come down to the people.’”Turns out, it was much more than just that.Medical researchers who are working to unpack the issue view minority access to hospice care as a matter of social justice. It’s typically paid for by the government, can reduce patient suffering, and relieve family members of the burdens of caring for a dying loved one.Why should African-Americans continue to suffer more at life’s end than others?There’s a lot to sift through, starting with the medical industry’s long and at times ugly history of neglect and abuse of blacks.Doctors can also fail to account for the pervasive belief among many African-American faithful that God has an ability to heal the sick through miracles.Finally, there’s the reality that some in tighter-knit African-American communities can direct harsh judgments toward those who choose hospice. Some see hospice as an abdication of caretaking responsibilities, at best, or, at worst, a hastening of a loved one’s death. (Research actually shows hospice patients live longer than those who opt for more aggressive end-of-life treatments.) At a hospice facility for children, a long goodbye is made a little less lonely EndnotesAgainst a history of medical mistreatment, African-Americans are distrustful of hospice care Related: Armella Leung for STAT Related: Reimagining hospice care — for the living “All of them looked at me with a cold face,” he said. “And then this volunteer takes over for me, stands up, and says, ‘God is good!’ And everybody’s like ‘A-MEN!’” The medical community has long known that African-Americans resist hospice care at far higher rates than other groups. But Dr. Ivan Zama, a hospice and palliative care physician, felt like he could still change some minds when, in 2010, he was asked to address a group of African-Americans at an assisted-living facility in Maryland.Zama, who is black and was born in Cameroon, prepared his most persuasive slides. He enjoyed a warm introduction from a facility volunteer. Then he made his case.Crickets.advertisement Related: Roughly 40 others attended, trading tips about what worked, and what didn’t, in their respective practices.Many things don’t work, Zama said after the meeting.Zama took away some ideas, he said, and offered some of his own.He has, at times, relied on his Catholic background to convince patients and family members that hospice does not run counter to Christian tenets, pointing out that Pope John Paul II chose to die at home without life-extending measures. (Greg Schleppenbach, a spokesman for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, called hospice “laudable and beautiful.”)That approach is in keeping with a method that Zama said he developed not long after his hospice presentation debacle. In his second presentation — this time to a different group — he ditched the PowerPoint.“I walked in there and I said, ‘You know, God says that we all have a mission.”He paused, and hoped.“A-MEN!” Zama, who is amiable and fit, with a thick accent, laughs now at the memory.advertisement Tags end of lifelast_img read more

Florida man pleads guilty to killing wife, leads police to remains

first_imgRELATEDTOPICS Advertisement Advertisement AdvertisementTags: florida manmurder Florida man sentenced to life in prison for machete slaying at grow house June 16, 2021 WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) — A Florida man has been convicted of killing his estranged wife, who went missing earlier this year.David Anthony, 44, pleaded guilty Monday to second-degree murder and kidnapping, the Palm Beach Post reported. His plea agreement calls for 38 years in prison at his sentencing early next year.As part of the deal with prosecutors, Anthony had to tell authorities where he dumped his wife’s remains after killing her in March. Later Monday, investigators found the remains of what they believe are Gretchen Anthony about 3 miles from her Jupiter home, Jupiter Police Chief Daniel Kerr said during a news conference.Security-camera footage from Gretchen Anthony’s home, neighbors’ testimonies and other evidence connected David Anthony to his wife’s death and disappearance, officials said. AdvertisementShortly after Gretchen Anthony disappeared, David Anthony left the state, officials said. He was arrested in New Mexico about a week later.Gretchen and David Anthony married in March 2015 in Nevada. Court documents showed the filed for divorce at the beginning of 2020.center_img Cape Coral man tries to figure out meaning of his 25-year-old tattoos June 16, 2021 Naples soldier facing charges for wife’s murder June 16, 2021 AdvertisementDC Young Fly knocks out heckler (video) – Rolling OutRead more6 comments’Mortal Kombat’ Exceeded Expectations Says WarnerMedia ExecutiveRead more2 commentsDo You Remember Bob’s Big Boy?Read more1 commentsKISS Front Man Paul Stanley Reveals This Is The End Of KISS As A Touring Band, For RealRead more1 comments AdvertisementRecommended ArticlesBrie Larson Reportedly Replacing Robert Downey Jr. As The Face Of The MCURead more81 commentsGal Gadot Reportedly Being Recast As Wonder Woman For The FlashRead more29 comments “Person of interest” identified in disappearance and death of teenager Molly Bish June 7, 2021last_img read more

21st Century Feudalism

first_img News RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR News News SHARE Entire border patrol unit in North Hamgyong Province placed into quarantine following “paratyphoid” outbreak AvatarLee Kwang Baek, UMG, President There are signs that North Korea is running into serious difficulties with its corn harvest center_img Facebook Twitter News By Lee Kwang Baek, UMG, President – 2007.07.10 10:20am 21st Century Feudalism [imText1]Since 2006, raising rabbits has become common in North Korea. A public order now dictates that everyone must contribute 4 sheets of rabbits’ fur every year. In response, several farms have been converted into rabbit farms, displacing production facilities for rice, corn, and cereals. In some cases the military assisted with the conversions. In each of the Pyongyang districts and Kangdong-gun, Seungho. Kangsan-gun, and Sangwon-gun, 7or 8 farms have been constructed according to the Daily NK’s inside sources. Residents must raise rabbits at home and dedicate the fur to the government. If the rabbits cannot be raised at home, the fur should be bought at the Janmadang (markets), then given to the government. Therefore, the price of rabbit fur has risen from 800 won to 4,000~5,000won (US$1.4~1.7). Rabbit fur is not the only material that people have to dedicate to the regime. Other mandated offerings to the Dear Leader include 0.35g of alluvial gold, dog skin (costs 18,000~20,000 won), 35kg of pork, and 10kg of corn every year. These items are not counted as national tax income but instead as presents to Kim Jong Il. 10kg of corn is called “Pheasant fodder.” “No. 1 fodder” because it is livestock feed for the animals consumed by Kim Jong Il. In medieval times the system of ownership assumed that the land, its produce, and the people themselves were essentially property of a king. To present precious goods to the king was the natural duty of each citizen. Following the collapse of social classes and the beginning the democracy, taxes were substituted for presents to the king and were used by citizens to manage their communities. In North Korea, however, presents to the king are still required, though the regime declares that social classes no longer exist. People dedicate their meat, produce, and fur to the Dear Leader while their children go hungry and under clothed. It is our hope that democracy and a free market system come to North Korea soon. Its citizenry must be freed from disgorging their private property and allowed to regain control of their nation’s destiny. North Korea tries to accelerate building of walls and fences along border with Chinalast_img read more

CCMR to play a major role in fight against financial wrongdoing: Wetston

first_img The creation of the Co-operative Capital Markets Regulatory System (CCMR) would help regulators, police and other agencies in improving the effectiveness of enforcement in the fight against financial wrongdoing, said Howard Wetston, the former chairman and CEO of the Ontario Securities Commission, in a speech at the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists’ financial crime forum in Toronto on Tuesday. “[The CCMR] should lead, in my opinion, to enhanced enforcement efforts and results, not only in securities matters, but also in areas of financial crime, such as money laundering,” said Wetston. “It would be the first time that the federal government is actually participating in an agency with the provinces [not only] to regulate the capital markets, but also to deal effectively together in areas of enforcement as well.” Keywords National securities regulatorCompanies Co-operative Capital Markets Regulator Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Morisset’s term as CSA chair extended Rudy Mezzetta Facebook LinkedIn Twitter National regulator effort effectively dead The CCMR — a federal-provincial regulatory body that includes the federal government, five provincial governments, and two territorial governments and is intended to serve as the first step toward a de-facto national securities regulator — would reduce the current fragmentation in regulation and allow a better sharing of resources across jurisdictions, Wetston said. (Ontario and British Columbia have joined the proposed organization; Quebec and Alberta have not.) “In Canada, responsibility for enforcing financial crimes is divided among many agencies and many statutes,” said Wetston, who stepped down in November after five years as head of the OSC. “The public is predictably confused about the roles of the federal and provincial law enforcement and regulatory agencies. It’s not assisted in Canada by having 13 securities regulators.” In terms of increasing the effectiveness of enforcement, overall, the key lies in establishing and maintaining partnerships between regulatory bodies and enforcement agencies, Wetston said. This is particularly vital because securities regulators in Canada do not have the authority to pursue criminal activity directly. “To be truly effective, a securities enforcement program needs to cover the full spectrum of financial misconduct, including criminal behaviour,” Wetston said. “That’s what the public expects and, frankly, that’s what the public deserves.” As a prime example of a successful initiative, Wetston pointed to the introduction in 2013 of the Joint Serious Offenses Team (JSOT), a partnership between OSC, the Ontario Provincial Police’s anti-rackets branch and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police’s financial crime program. In combining police resources and criminal code tools with the OSC’s specialized team of litigators and other experts, the JSOT has executed 120 search warrants, and laid 25 criminal code or quasi-criminal charges. “It’s really starting to show results,” Wetston said of the JSOT. Related news Budget promises funding for national regulator effortlast_img read more

ACT ahead of pack on worker’s rights and protections

first_imgACT ahead of pack on worker’s rights and protections Minister for Industrial Relations and Workplace Safety Mick Gentleman today met with Federal, State and Territory Ministers for Workplace Safety to discuss the implementation of Marie Boland’s 2018 Review of the Model Work Health and Safety Laws.“We agreed to take action on all 34 recommendations of Boland Review to improve the model work health and safety laws,” Minister Gentleman said.“However, I was very disappointed that the Federal Government did not vote in favour of introducing industrial manslaughter as an offence under the model laws.“The ACT voted with other Labor States and Territories in favour of new industrial manslaughter laws.“But we knew we could not count of the support of the Federal Minister – this is why we have moved ahead on our own to introduce industrial manslaughter in the Work Health and Safety Act. This will include jailtime is a penalty for industrial manslaughter.“Every worker has the right to return home safely from work and governments and employers have an important role to play in this. We want to ensure families of those killed in the workplace have access to justice.“I was pleased that a majority of states agreed to make regulations to deal with psychological hazards in the workplace. Bullying, harassment and sexual harassment are never okay – they are health hazards that must be managed under work health and safety duties.“The ACT Government has already commenced work on regulations and a Code of Practice for managing psychosocial hazards, such as bulling and sexual harassment in the workplace.“We also discussed deaths and injuries of gig economy workers. Although there was an agreement to take further action, these are unfortunately a bandaid solution to a larger problem.“The gig economy model relies on insecure work and unsafe conditions and is fundamentally stacked against worker rights. Because these workers are not recognised as employees , they may be denied basic rights and entitlements and rights such as fair pay.“This creates the dangerous conditions that have contributed to so many gig-economy injuries and deaths. I implore my colleagues to work together and take further action to ensure that these vulnerable workers are protected. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:Act, ACT Government, agreement, Australia, bullying, code of practice, Economy, Employees, Federal, federal government, gig economy, Government, harassment, health, health and safety, justice, Ministerlast_img read more