4 days agoChelsea matchwinner Marcos Alonso: We’re getting better and better

first_imgChelsea matchwinner Marcos Alonso: We’re getting better and betterby Paul Vegas4 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea matchwinner Marcos Alonso says beating Newcastle United was the ideal way to return from the international break.Alonso expected Newcastle’s resistance and felt the home side’s patience finally paid off in the second half.”They played in a very compact style so it’s not easy to find space to attack and create chances,” he told chelseafc.com. “In the second half, we did very well and were intense in our play. That makes it hard for them to hold for 90 minutes so we were able to get the goal and the three points.”We were prepared for them to play like that. Maybe in the first half, we were lacking a bit of patience and finesse in the final third but we always had belief that the goal would come.”We have many options in the team and this is good. The team is getting better, we are improving game by game and we need to continue in this way. We are moving the ball quickly, our press is good and we are doing a good job as a team. We have clear ideas and we have to continue in this way.”Alonso felt the three Premier League points were particularly important coming in the first game back from an international break and he emphasised that hard work was paying off with results as we secured a fifth consecutive win in all competitions.”It was very important to win after the international break,” he admitted. “We played with a lot of patience and at the end we got the goal, we kept grafting and got a good reward”It’s a new season with new staff and there’s room for improvement but since the beginning we have improved a lot. We need to keep focused on each game and work hard in training.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Coalition of regional parties fizzle out as constituents go separate ways

first_imgDarjeeling: The coalition of regional parties in Darjeeling Hills and the exercise to field a consensus candidate fizzled out with the constituents deciding to go their own ways. Even Congress and Left Front have fielded their own candidates.The Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) has decided to form an alliance with the Bimal Gurung faction of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha. The coalition will be supporting the BJP candidate from the Darjeeling constituency. Also Read – Bengal family worships Muslim girl as Goddess Durga in Kumari PujaInterestingly, the bigwigs of the Bimal Gurung faction of the GJM, namely Gurung and Roshan Giri, are absconding. In a joint press conference in Delhi on Monday, the GNLF-GJM (Bimal faction) pledged their support to the BJP. “This has been done in the greater interest of the Gorkhas and to defeat anti-Gorkha forces,” stated Niraj Zimba, spokesperson, GNLF. The coalition feels that the BJP alone can fulfill the aspiration of the Gorkhas. When questioned on the public demand for local candidates for the Darjeeling constituency, Binu Sundas of the GJM (Bimal faction) said: “We had thought of this but had to compromise.” The BJP has not yet announced the names of candidates. Also Read – Bengal civic volunteer dies in road mishap on national highwayWhen questioned on the GNLF-GJM (Bimal faction) coalition, Binay Tamang, president of the GJM said: “The GNLF does not have any base in the Hills. The leaders of the other party are absconding. How will the coalition matter?” Meanwhile Shanker Malakar, the sitting MLA of Matigara-Naxalbari, has been fielded by the Congress for the Darjeeling constituency. The name of Saman Pathak was declared by the Left Front on Tuesday as their candidate for Darjeeling.last_img read more

Imran Khan welcomes PM Modis greetings on Pakistan National Day

first_imgIslamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has welcomed his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi’s greetings on the eve of its National Day, saying time has come to begin a “comprehensive dialogue” between the two countries to address and resolve all issues, including the “central issue” of Kashmir. According to official sources in New Delhi, Prime Minister Modi sent a letter to Khan, greeting people of Pakistan on the eve of its National Day and highlighting the importance of a terror-free South Asia. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c details Modi, in his message, said it was time for the people of the sub-continent to work together for a democratic, peaceful, progressive and prosperous region, in an atmosphere free of terror and violence, they said. Khan, in a tweet, welcomed Modi’s message and said the time has come to begin a comprehensive dialogue between the two countries to address and resolve all issues, including Kashmir. “I welcome PM Modi’s message to our people. As we celebrate Pakistan Day I believe it is time to begin a comprehensive dialogue with India to address & resolve all issues, esp the central issue of Kashmir, & forge a new relationship based on peace & prosperity for all our people,” Khan tweeted on Friday. Also Read – Tourists to be allowed in J&K from Thursday India has made it clear to Pakistan that cross-border terror attacks and talks cannot go hand in hand. India last year called off a planned meeting of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi on the sidelines of the annual session of the UN General Assembly in New York after blaming Pakistan-based entities for killing of three special police officers in Kashmir. Earlier, Khan also tweeted Modi’s message. “Received msg from PM Modi: ‘I extend my greetings & best wishes to the people of Pakistan on the National Day of Pakistan. It is time that ppl of Sub-continent work together for a democratic, peaceful, progressive & prosperous region, in an atmosphere free of terror and violence’,” Khan said. Modi’s message to Khan came in the midst of severe strain in ties between the two nuclear-armed neighbours following the Pulwama attack and the subsequent air strikes by India on a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror camp in Pakistan’s Balakot. Significantly, India Friday boycotted a reception at the Pakistan High Commission here to mark Pakistan’s National Day, objecting to invites extended to several separatist leaders from Jammu and Kashmir for the event. The official sources in New Delhi said the prime minister sends a customary message on National Days to other heads of state and government and added that his message to Khan highlighted the importance of a terror-free South Asia. Tensions between India and Pakistan escalated after a suicide bomber of Pakistan-based terror group JeM killed 40 CRPF personnel in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district in February 14. India launched a counter-terror operation in Balakot. The next day, Pakistan Air Force retaliated and downed a MiG-21 in an aerial combat and captured its pilot, who was handed over to India on March 1. Every year on March 23, Pakistan celebrates its National Day commemorating the Lahore Resolution passed on March 23, 1940 and the adoption of the first constitution of Pakistan on March 23, 1956.last_img read more

In a first UK voters oust criminal MP

first_imgLondon: Voters in eastern England will elect a new member of parliament next month after ejecting the incumbent in the first move of its kind, it was announced Thursday. Fiona Onasanya lost her seat after voters in the city of Peterborough signed a recall petition triggered by her conviction for lying over a speeding offence. The 35-year-old was expelled from the main opposition Labour party after she was jailed for three months in January for perverting the course of justice. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince Salman ‘snubbed’ Pak PM Imran, recalled his private jet from US: ReportShe had hoped to continue as an independent MP, but 28 per cent of eligible voters signed the petition, well over the 10 percent threshold required to oust her. MPs who receive sentences of less than a year in prison are not automatically excluded from parliament. Following the announcement of the results on Wednesday night, Labour moved a motion in the House of Commons on Thursday for a new election for June 6. It is fielding a new candidate, but is likely to face intense competition in a marginal seat complicated by shifting political allegiances over Brexit. Also Read – Iraq military admits ‘excessive force’ used in deadly protestsOnasanya took the seat from Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservatives in 2017 by a majority of just 607 votes, and the party will fight hard to win it back. But Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party is also hoping to capitalise on the strong anti-EU feeling in Peterborough to try to win its first seat in the House of Commons. Farage himself — a major campaigner in the 2016 referendum on leaving the EU — is reportedly not planning to stand. “We will give it our best shot,” he tweeted. Onasanya is the first MP to be removed by the recall process, which was introduced by former prime minister David Cameron in 2015. It applies to MPs convicted of an offence and sentenced to jail, suspended from the Commons for at least 10 sitting days, or found guilty of false expenses claims. Onasanya had claimed someone else was driving her car when it was caught speeding in July last year.last_img read more

Gattuso confirms Silva Kalinic will stay at Milan

first_imgAC Milan manager Gennaro Gattuso has confirmed that he intends to retain both Andre Silva and Nikola Kalinic for next seasonSilva joined the Rossoneri last summer from FC Porto in a €38m deal, but had only found the back of the net 10 times in his 40 appearances.Prior to joining Milan, the 22-year-old had scored 21 goals in 44 matches for Porto.Meanwhile, Kalinic completed a €25m move to Milan but he has appeared to be a mere shadow of the player he was during his time at Fiorentina and the Croatia international only scored six goals all season.Cristiano Ronaldo, JuventusSerie A Betting: Match-day 3 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Considering there is a number of perfect starts so early in the Serie A season, as well as a few surprisingly not-so perfect ones….But, despite a lacklustre season from both of them, Gattuso intends to keep the pair at the San Siro.“Kalinic and Andre Silva? I hope that they will improve, Andre Silva has scored. All of you keep talking about an exit for them but we will hold onto them both, tightly,” said Gattuso, via Calcio Mercato.last_img read more

People on the Move 121108

first_imgCondé Nast named Julie Raimondi editor in chief of Brides.com. Raimondi also will remain in her role as editor-in-chief of the 16 Brides local mgazines, the publisher said.Robert W. Merry, the former longtime president andeditor-in-chief of Congressional Quarterly, was appointedpublisher of global intelligence publisher STRATFOR, beginning inJanuary. CQ was acquired this summer by the Economist Group, which formed the CQ-Roll Call group.Lebhar-Friedman’s Nation’s Restaurant News announced a number of personnel changes: retail and foodservice groups group publisher Randall Friedman was named publisher, replacing Tom Larranaga; national sales director Chris Keating was promoted to associate publisher; and executive editor Robin Lee Allen and online executive editor Sarah Lockyer were appointed co-leaders of the editorial team, replacing Ellen Koteff.American Express Publishing named Toby McKenna advertising director of digital at TravelandLeisure.com. Also, Amy Koblenzer was named photo director of Travel + Leisure. Koblenzer most recently served as photo editor at Gourmet, a position she held for six years. United Business Media’s Think Services Game Group promoted Simon Carless to global brand director. Carless replaces Think Services executive vice president Kathy Astromoff, who recently took on a broader management role.Rachel Wintner was appointed to the newly-created position of vice president of sales at Glam Media. Previously, Wintner served as associate publisher of Conde Nast’s Style.com. Playboy Enterprises Wednesday named senior vice president of strategic planning and treasurer Robert D. Campbell interim CFO, effective January 1, 2010. Campbell replaces Linda G. Havard, who announced her resignation last month and plans to leave the company by the end of the year. The company said it hired BridgeGate LLC to lead the CFO search and that it will bconsider both internal and external candidates. Hearst Magazines International named Sophia Stewart executive director of digital. Most recently, Stewart served as executive director of mobile at Hearst Magazines Digital Media.George Brooks announced his retirement as executive vice president of Norfolk, Virginia-based magazine publisher Dominion Enterprises and as president of Dominion Market Media. Brooks’ departure will be effective January 22, 2010.As part of a restructuring, Tracey Altman was let go as publisher of Reader’s Digest magazine. Her responsibilities will be taken over by Eva Dillon, president of the Reader’s Digest Community. While Altman told FOLIO: she has since contacted her legal counsel, she called it “standard procedure” and said she is not planning legal action against RDA, as was initially reported.last_img read more

Tata Steel May Sell Stake Worth Rs 5500 crore in Tata Motors

first_imgTata Steel is reportedly planning to sell its 5.5% stake in sister company Tata Motors.As per reports, the steel manufacturing arm of Tata Group is expected to execute the stake sale worth Rs 5,500 crore in “one or two tranches”.Surprisingly, the buyer is none other than its parent company Tata Group, a section of media reported quoting sources.Tata Steel also seems to be contemplating to “sell cross holding across Tata Group companies”. The company is expected to undertake debt refinancing to reduce interest charges.However, Tata Steel told CNBC-TV18 that the reports on stake sale in Tata Motors to Tata Group were “speculative”.”The company is committed to making disclosures to regulators and the investing community,” it said.Tata Motors, which will announce its earnings for June quarter on Friday, is struggling to increase its revenues due to declining volumes in China. China is the largest market for Tata Motors’ Jaguar Land Rover (JLR).Tata Motors earns more than 80% of its revenues from JLR sales. A drop in business volumes in China, which accounts for 20% of total JLR sales, weighed heavily on its profits in the March quarter last financial year (2014-15).The company profit slumped by 56.19% to Rs 1,716.50 crore in the January-March quarter compared to Rs 3,918.29 crore in the same quarter a year ago (2013-14).”Overall the environment and the numbers for Tata Motors doesn’t look good for the next couple of quarters,” said Sudip Bandopadhyay of Destimoney Securities.Owing to the weak outlook, share prices of Tata Motors have fell sharply by about 32% since the beginning of April this year.last_img read more

Libya mosque attack kills one injures 62

first_imgMembers of the self-styled Libyan National Army, loyal to the country`s east strongman Khalifa Haftar, patrol the roads leading into the eastern city of Benghazi on 7 February, 2018. Photo: AFPTwin bomb blasts struck a mosque in Benghazi in eastern Libya on Friday, killing one person and wounding more than 62, the city’s main hospital said.The explosions hit the mosque at the start of weekly prayers in Libya’s second city, which lies 1,000 kilometres (620 miles) east of Tripoli, a security source told AFP.One bomb was hidden in a coffin in the courtyard of the mosque and another in a shoe cabinet at the entrance, the source added.At least one person was killed and 62 wounded, according to a spokeswoman for the city’s Al-Jala hospital, Fadia al-Barghathi.The blast follows twin car bombings on 24 January outside a mosque in Benghazi that left nearly 40 people dead.There was no claim of responsibility for that attack, which underscored the ongoing chaos in the Benghazi region which is controlled by the forces of military strongman Khalifa Haftar.Haftar, who opposes a UN-backed unity government based in Tripoli, announced Benghazi’s “liberation” from jihadists in July last year after a three-year campaign, but sporadic violence has continued.Libya has been wracked by violence and divisions since dictator Moamer Kadhafi was toppled and killed in a 2011 NATO-backed uprising.On 11 September, 2012, suspected jihadists linked to Al-Qaeda attacked the US consulate in Benghazi, killing ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans.last_img

Cardinals Sit in Third After Day 1 At ACC Championships

first_imgFlorida State is atop the standings with 174 points, followed by Virginia (173), Louisville (156), Duke (146), Notre Dame (144), North Carolina (120), NC State (116), Virginia Tech (107), Georgia Tech (100), Miami (94), Pitt (70) and Boston College (62).”Congratulations to our divers tonight,” said Arthur Albiero, UofL head coach. “Molly Fears and Michaela Sliney did a fantastic job in prelims and they both earned their spots in tonight’s A-final. They contributed significantly for our highest point total after Day One.”  In the 800 free relay, Sophie Cattermole finished her leadoff leg (1:45.94) to put the Cardinals in 6th place and handed the race over to Arina Openysheva, who went 1:45.44 to move in to fifth. Alena Kraus made up even more time in her leg with a 1:45.33 to move the Cards into fourth and handed over to Mallory Comerford, who anchored in 1:41.01 for the fastest splint in the field to move the Cards into the silver medal slot in 6:58.93 for the fifth fastest time in school history.  The event was won by Virginia, with the Wahoos putting up a 6:55.22 for an A-cut and a meet record.”Our  relays were solid, but we feel strongly that we can continue to improve on both events for NCAAs next month,” said Albiero.  2019 ACC Wednesday Full Results Competition continues on Thursday when the 500 freestyle, 200 IM, 50 Free, 3M men’s diving and the 200 freestyle relay with the finals being contested beginning at 6 p.m. ET. Print Friendly Version In the 200-Medley Relay, the Cards were in sixth place after the first three legs before Casey Fanz put up the second fastest anchor leg of the field to put the Cards into the wall fourth with a time of 1:36.54. Alina Kendzior (24.33), Mariia Astashkina (27.11), Grace Oglesby (23.17) and Fanz (21.93) got the NCAA A-cut. The event was won by NC State’s time of 1:34.52, an ACC meet and conference record.  After one day of competition at the 2019 ACC Swimming and Diving Championships, the University of Louisville women are in third place. Louisville put two women in the 3M diving finals, Molly Fears finished fourth with a total score of  313.00. Michaela  Sliney was eighth with a score of 260.25.  The event was won by Miami’s Alicia Blagg In the men’s 1M diving, after the preliminary round of six dives, Daniel Fecteau (9th) posted a 286.05 to just miss making the final field of eight and Daniel Pinto scored a 284.15 for tenth. Freshman Kivanc Gur finished 23rd with a 242.10. The men dive during the women’s week of championships.  Story Linkslast_img read more

New Ikea Video Suggests at Least Two SonosPowered Speakers Coming to Be

first_imgIkea is getting ready to unveil the smart speaker products it has been building with Sonos: The furniture giant will unveil its first smart speakers at the Milan Furniture Fair next month, it announced Thursday.And with the announcement also come a few hints of what to expect, thanks to a teaser video. The 40-second video features a stylized living room and kitchen, complete with two strategically blurred-out areas.The positioning and size of those masked spots suggests that the company may be getting ready to introduce at least two speakers with distinct form factors: A speaker shelf that would fit on a kitchen wall, and a standalone speaker that one might place on an end table.Ikea first previewed design concepts for its Sonos-powered products last year, including one that doubled as a shelf. The company specifically called out this prototype in its press release Thursday, calling it “a book-shelf speaker that will give customers a great connected speaker that enables a multi-functional usage in the home, at an affordable price.”Ikea’s smart speakers will apparently also integrate with the company’s Tradfri smart light systems. ‎”Together with Sonos we wanted to combine our home furnishing knowledge with their expertise in creating great sound experiences for every room of the home, and in Milan we want you to experience the real difference that sound and light makes in your life,” said Ikea smart home business leader Björn Block in a statement. Ikea plans to unveil the final version of its Sonos speakers on April 9 in Milan. The company previously announced that the speakers will go on sale in August.The cooperation could be a big boost for Sonos, with executives telling investors in a recent earnings release that it could “potentially introduce millions of new households to the Sonos app and experience.” ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15center_img Popular on Variety last_img read more

Tea tales

first_imgThe Delhi based artiste Seema Kohli stands poised to gave back to the city, that has given her so much, in her innovative Cutting Chai installation at The NDMC Palate Mini from March 13 -15 at Nehru Park, Chanakyapuri, Delhi’s plush park spread over 80 acres boasting of a dazzling collection of blossoming flowers.The Cutting Chai installation is made of metal servers traditionally called ‘Cheekka’ used to serve tea in rural areas. Chai being the common accomplice to any conversation in all strata holds a very recognisable space. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Says Seema Kohli, “While painting I can hold my conversation intact with my canvas and me. I have used teacups and the idea of tea as a means of introspection, leading to final liberation. It holds an important dialogue between me and my inner, my outer, my social and my spiritual world. Hence the need for this installation.”The Cheekka holds cutting tea glasses with tea lights in it. The size of the installation can be increased or decreased according to the space allotted. The materials used include metal wire, glass, acrylic colour and tea. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixSeema Kohli’s art practice involves various disciplines from drawing, painting, sculptures, installations and performance. The most significant one to emerge is ‘Performance Art’. Decay, hybridisation and transformation: Creating new identity; reshaping belongings; intimacy; a dialogue of matter and memory, all these constitute the language of her work.‘Time’ as a factor, is central to her practice, whether it’s a wrapped object or a performance. She uses time as medium, which is extended, assembled and captured. The aspects of continuity, repetition, vulnerability, duration, temporality, awareness, situation and public involvement are also inherent qualities that inform her art practice. The process before and after the performance is equally important and challenging.last_img read more

13yearold boy found hanging at home in Uttarpara

first_imgKolkata: Mystery shrouds the death of a 13-year-old boy whose body was found at his residence in Uttarpara in a strangulated condition.The incident triggered tension among locals. The family members of the victim, however, alleged that he was murdered following some family rivalry. Police are probing into all possible angles behind the incident. The victim has been identified as Subhojit Jana. He was a class VIII student of Uttarpara Amarendra Vidyapith in Hooghly. The incident took place in Mondalpara area of Uttarpara on Saturday evening when his parents were not Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeat home. According to the preliminary investigation, police suspect that the victim might have been playing with a piece of cloth when the incident occurred. They are also investigating if or not the victim was trying to enact a scene that he might have watched on television. It was learnt from the police sources that when his parents reached home they found that he was lying on the floor with a piece of cloth tied around his neck. They immediately took the victim to Uttarpara State General Hospital where the doctors pronounced him brought dead. The family members of the boy told the police that they suspect foul play behind the incident as there was a family rivalry going on for sometime. They demanded a high-level probe. The senior police officers in the district assured the family members that they are looking into all possible angles. Police have sent the body for an autopsy.last_img read more

Pocketfriendly stop for students

first_imgOne of the oldest lane surrounding the north campus – ‘Hudson Lane’ – has stood the test of time, competing with fancy restaurants and cafes in the Capital. But what is so special about this place that people choose it over lavish restaurants?With a plethora of hangout options that are not only easily accessible but exceptionally budget-friendly, it is an ideal place for foodies. Lying close to the Kamla Nehru College, the place is highly popular among the students. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”I went to this place on the first day of my college and haven’t been able to get enough of it,” said Harshit Jain, a student of Kamla Nehru College, adding, “This is one place where all my friends meet every single day. Besides offering myriad flavors from different cuisines, the aura of the place is amazing. It’s a stop where can just sit and chill for hours, without any sort of restriction.”Despite the sudden rise in cafes and changing food scene of the lane, this place stays true to its roots. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive”I have seen this place grow and change. When I was a student, I used to be excited all the time for Charan Singh’s food van or Surinder’s chole bhature. Eating shahi paneer and rajma chawal over a few laughs was one of those memories I still cherish. The best part was interacting with the cooks in the food joint while learning how to make our favourite dishes. People in this area have always been extremely friendly and cheerful. We feel at home when we come here,” said Tanmay Goel, student from Shaheed Bhagat Singh. Though Satya Niketan – the area surrounding south campus, is equally popular among the college goers, Hudson lane gets an upper hand when it comes to a society meeting or a casual lunch gathering. One of the major reason for people choosing Hudson over Satya Niketan is the open space it has. Hudson is designed over a big place and the cafes are widely spread. People don’t have to necessarily to go and sit in cafes. They can eat street food or sit in parks in this area. On the other hand, Satya Niketan is congested and has cafes next to each other, making it extremely crowded. Even though new restaurants are opened on a daily basis in this cute-little lane, people preferably sit and eat in their favorite old restaurants. “I personally love trying new cuisines and places. But even though there are quite a few nice cafes that have opened up in this area, Ricos, Hudson Cafe or BYD will always remain my favourite. It’s not that I don’t like the new cafes, but the old ones have a homely feel to it. We are accustomed to the ambiance and are really not over it yet,” said Anushi Arora, Miranda House.If you haven’t visited the area yet, go and check out. It has a number of options which will convince you to come back again.last_img read more

Recap Delays continue as A500 reopens four hours after car fire

first_img We pay for stories! Send your videos to video@trinitymirror.comThere are long delays on the A500 due to a vehicle fire this afternoon – with the D-roads northbound carriageway shut for several hours as a result. A number of readers contacted us about the fire on the carriageway between City Road and Stoke Road – which is believed to have started just before 4pm. The fire was near the bridge near the Civic Centre and Glebe Street – with congestion reported on other major roads across the area and the northbound A500 reopening shortly before 8pm. The southbound carriageway was also closed but is now reported to have reopened, according to traffic data company Inrix. The fire led to long delays throughout the city, with motorists reporting hours added to journeys in some cases. A Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service spokeswoman said: “We received a call at 15.59, two appliances – one from Hanley and Longton have attended. It is a vehicle fire. Read MoreMan, 25, arrested on suspicion of rape after sex attack in park Paramedics confirmed no one was injured. The video will start in 1Cancel Play now Follow us on Twitter @SOTLive – the official account – real news in real time. We’re also on Facebook – your must-see news, features, videos and pictures throughout Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire & South Cheshire. Want to tell us about something going on where you live? Let us know – Tweet us @SOTLive or message us on our Facebook page . And if you have pictures to share, tag us on Instagram at StokeonTrentLive .19:50Police confirm A500 has reopenedStaffordshire Police have confirmed the A500 has reopened.19:14Latest from Highways EnglandA Highways England spoksman said: “On the A500 near Stoke, we’ll soon be re-opening the northbound carriageway following an earlier car fire. Local roads and alternative routes in and around Stoke are busy. Allow extra journey time still.”18:41Latest on the A500 from Inrix A500 D Road Northbound closed, queueing traffic due to car fire from A519 (Hanchurch Interchange, Staffordshire) to A52 (Stoke Road Interchange, Stoke-on-Trent). Congestion to M6 J15 (Stoke-On-Trent). A50 is also struggling towards the Sideway Roundabout, because traffic is forced southbound. Both the A52 and A34 heading into Stoke is also struggling as traffic diverts away. Traffic heading Southbound on the A500 from Basford R.Although the fire has now been put out, the closure has been pushed back to the Hanchurch Interchange around 18:00, to help manage traffic Traffic was also held Southbound but has been released. Long delays on surrounding roads as traffic tries to avoid. 18:28Highways England confirm carriageway remains closedA Highways England spokesman said: A reminder that the A500 in Stoke remains closed northbound while Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service and Staffordshire Police deal with a vehicle fire. “18:10Delays on A34 due to traffic avoiding A500Stop-start traffic on A34 Grovesnor Roundabout in both directions from B5038 Whitmore Road to A527 Barracks Road (Grosvenor Roundabout).Traffic using this route to avoid the problems on the A500. (Image: Inrix)17:54Latest from InrixA500 D Road Northbound closed, queueing traffic due to vehicle fire from A52 City Road (City Road Interchange) to A52 (Stoke Road Interchange). Congestion to M6 J15 (Stoke-On-Trent). A50 is also struggling towards the Sideway Roundabout. Both the A52 and A34 heading into Stoke is also struggling as traffic diverts away.Despite social media suggesting a closure at the A50 sensors show traffic getting off at City Road. Traffic was also held Southbound but has been released. Causing bad congestion through Stoke town and on the A53 as traffic finds alternative routes. 17:52Delays on A52 due to traffic on A500Queueing traffic on A52 in both directions from A527 Queen Street to A527 Barracks Road.Not helped by the ongoing problems on the A500. 17:50Queuing traffic on A50Queueing traffic on A50 Westbound from A5005 Lightwood Road (Longton / Dresden) to A5006 (Sideway Roundabout).Not helped by the problems on the A500.17:25Police commentA Staffordshire Police spokesman said:A500 northbound in Staffordshire is currently closed due to a vehicle fire at Glebe Street near Stoke, with a closure in place at the Sideway junction by the A50. Please expect delays in the local area and find an alternative route where possible .”17:24Latest on A500A Highways England spokesman said: “On the A500 near Stoke a car has caught fire. “ Traffic has been temporarily halted in both directions between the junctions of the A519 and the a34, while Staffordshire Fire and Rescue tackle the blaze. Expect delays.”17:20Latest from InrixA500 Queensway in both directions blocked, queueing traffic due to all traffic being temporarily held and vehicle fire from A52 City Road (City Road Interchange) to A52 (Stoke Road Interchange).A vehicle fire on the Northbound carriageway has resulted in traffic being held in both directions. Sensors show traffic is being affected between Sideway Roundabout and Kidsgrove / Tunstall turn off as well as the A53 and going through Stoke town. 16:51Ambulance service confirm no injuriesA West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said:We were called at 4.06pm to reports of a car on fire on the A500. One ambulance attended. There were no injuries and we are now clear of the scene.” 16:38Delays on surrounding roadsInrix reports traffic is being affected between Sideway Roundabout and Kidsgrove / Tunstall turn off as well as the A53 and going through Stoke town. 16:37Latest photo from the sceneLatest photo from the fire on the A500 (Image: Mart Lowe)16:36What we know so farTraffic is being held on the A500 in both directions due to an SUV fireThe fire is near the Civic Centre in StokeFirefighters were called shortly before 4pmMotorists are being advised to avoid the area16:34Video from the sceneDawn Bridges took this video from the scene.16:33Traffic queueingInrix, the traffic data company, confirm traffic is queuing on surrounding roads.16:28Further statement from the councilA Stoke-on-Trent City Council spokesman said:“Motorists are advised that a vehicle on fire on the A500 Queensway is causing serious congestion on the ring road, which may have a knock-on effect on other routes. “Emergency services are on site but check your route before travelling and avoid the area as much as possible. “16:28Location of the fireThe fire is near Glebe Street bridge (Image: Inrix)16:26Another image from the scene (Image: Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service)16:23Council advising motorists to seek alternative routesA Stoke-on-Trent City Council spokesman said:There is a vehicle fire on the A500 near the Stoke Road junction. Traffic is very heavy in the that area so please avoid if at all possible. “Motorists are advised that a vehicle on fire on the A500 Queensway is causing serious congestion on the ring road, which may have a knock-on effect on other routes.” 16:21Another picture of the fire posted in our Traffic and Travel Group Click to playTap to play Dad slams ‘disgusting’ hospital window Video Loading Video Unavailable A500 fireVideo Player is loading.Play VideoPauseUnmute0:01/0:07Loaded: 0%0:01Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE-0:06 SharePlayback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedSubtitlessubtitles settings, opens subtitles settings dialogsubtitles off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMute0:00/0:00Loaded: 0%Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenClose Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. UP NEXT:UP NEXT: Click for Sound Police search for missing woman Video will play in center_img The fire on the A500 Latest photo from the fire on the A500 (Image: Mart Lowe) A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: “We were called at 4.06pm to reports of a car on fire on the A500. One ambulance attended. There were no injuries and we are now clear of the scene.” We’ll bring you further updates as we get them on live feed below. Want to keep up to date with the latest traffic and travel news?Each day Stoke-on-Trent Live journalists bring you the latest news on the roads and railways across Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire, South Cheshire and further afield to help keep you on the move. For the very latest updates on roads including the M6, A500, A50 and more, visit our dedicated traffic and travel news channel here. We also run a live news feed each weekday, which you can access on our website’s homepage from 7am to 9pm from Monday to Friday. And for more as-we-get-it updates on the roads across the region and beyond, join The Sentinel’s traffic and travel Facebook group here. For the latest news and breaking news visit www.stokeontrentlive.co.uk Get all the big headlines, pictures, analysis, opinion and video on the stories that matter to you. Read MoreTop stories on StokeonTrentLive Driver named following fatal collision Punter found hiding in bushes Watch again Share this video Watch Nextlast_img read more

The BBC is gearing up for the most digital Glasto

first_imgThe BBC is gearing up for “the most digital Glastonbury ever,” with live multi-feed coverage, similar to that seen at the Olympics, planned for the iconic music festival. The BBC said it will air more than 120 live performances over the three days of this summer’s festival on TV, red button, online and radio and will live-stream footage from the six main stages for the first time.The cross-platform online coverage will give viewers access to 250 hours of live coverage on PC, mobile, tablet and connected TV – including smart TVs and games consoles. The festival will also feature on TV channels BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Three and BBC Four.Mark Friend, BBC Controller, multiplatform across radio and music, said: “Just as we did with sport at the Olympics, our ambition this year is to bring our audiences even closer to the music they love at Glastonbury.”Additionally, the BBC’s commercial arm, BBC Worldwide, will broadcast the festival on its bouquet of international channels around the world. A six-hour live broadcast of the iconic festival will run on its final day, Sunday, June 30.The live stream and a 1x90mins highlight package will be carried on the BBC Entertainment channel in Asia, Latin America, Poland, Nordics and South Africa.It will also be on the BBC Knowledge channel in parts of Asia and BBC HD in the EMEA region and Latin America.In Australia and New Zealand the music festival content will be carried on UKTV.Tracy Forsyth, VP commissioning, content, BBC Worldwide, ordered the festival coverage for the international channels.She said:  “The scale and quality of Glastonbury and its consistently stellar line-up of music acts have given it a well-earned reputation as one of the world’s not-to-be-missed events, so we are excited to be bringing our viewers closer than ever before.”The Glastonbury 2013 highlights and live coverage will be produced by BBC Music Television and Glastonbury Festivals Limited.last_img read more

Russian DTH provider Orion Express has launched a

first_imgRussian DTH provider Orion Express has launched a regional multiplex, providing regional TV channels as part of its offering from the 85° East position.The multiplex currently provides 10 regional channels – Pervyy Tul’skiy, Yurgan, NTM – Pervyy Yaroslavskiy, Stavropol Regional TV, BST, Kuray , Mir Belogor’ya, 12 Kanal – Omsk, Ekspress and Don – with others to follow.A number of Russia’s regional TV channels could be threatened with the loss of terrestrial distribution when the country completes digital switchover, leaving satellite and cable as their only viable options.last_img read more

Today we have the great pleasure to introduce you

first_imgToday we have the great pleasure to introduce you to James Turk, a well-known investment guru, international investor, and co-founder of the increasingly popular GoldMoney.com.In this interview, James will talk about:His past and the lessons of relevance to all those who want to live an international life.Current trends and what people can do to protect themselves during these volatile times.His GoldMoney service, one which we receive quite a few questions about here at International Man every month.So, without further ado, let’s begin…International Man: For those who aren’t familiar with you or your work, can you tell us a bit about yourself?James Turk: I have over 40 years of experience in international banking, finance and investments. I began my career with Chase Manhattan Bank, now JPMorgan Chase, which is one of the big New York banks. I then worked with one of the world’s top commodity traders, before moving to Abu Dhabi where I managed the commodity department for its sovereign wealth fund. It was one of the seven countries in which I have lived, but I now live in Europe.I have written extensively over the last 25 years about money and investments. Many of my articles are posted on the Internet, but I am particularly proud of a book I co-authored with my friend, John Rubino, The Collapse of the Dollar and How to Profit from It. It was first published in 2004 and correctly laid out the reason for owning gold and why banks and other financial companies like Fannie Mae were heading for trouble. We also explained why the bubble then prevailing in the housing market was ready to burst.In the late 1990s I formed GoldMoney with my oldest son, Geoffrey, who is now its CEO. Since its launch in 2001 GoldMoney has become a leading provider for buying gold, silver, platinum and palladium online to buyers worldwide. It is presently storing in vaults in London, Zurich and Hong Kong over US$2.2 billion of precious metals owned by customers located in more than 100 countries.Lastly, I am also a director of the GoldMoney Foundation, a not-for-profit educational organization dedicated to providing information on the role of gold and silver as money and currency and their importance to society. I am a firm believer that gold’s use as money is inextricably interlinked with human liberty. The Foundation promulgates this key point through published material, videos and conferences.IM: When did you personally start living and investing overseas?JT: I always wanted to live abroad and travel, which is one reason I joined Chase. They promised an overseas assignment when I completed my training program in New York City, and in 1971 I moved to Thailand. I spent most of that decade living and working in Asia. It was a great experience and provided a strong base on which to build my business career.It was the early 1970s when I first began international investing for my personal portfolio. I don’t remember the year, but I remember the event well. I tried to invest in a fund managed by Robeco, a big Dutch asset management company. They didn’t accept my application because I used my US address, and the fund was not registered with the SEC.That irritated me, being self-reliant and believing that I did not need any government agency watching over my shoulder when I made an investment. It also made clear to me the nanny-state environment in which we lived back then, which in my view has become even more onerous and oppressive today. But that event from 40 years ago had a useful outcome. It set me on a path to learn the ins-and-outs of international investing and the arcane rules governments imposed.IM: What motivated you to look outside your home country for fortune and opportunity in the first place?JT: Though I was born and raised in the States, I had an international perspective as long as I can remember, probably because my father was born in Europe. As Shakespeare so wisely advised, the “world is your oyster”. In this regard, I have always believed that you can do or achieve anything you want in life. It just takes planning and a lot of hard work.Everyone has the freedom to do so, but not everyone has the same motivations. Nor does everyone have the goal to view the whole world as an opportunity to improve their situation in life and to make sure their children have a better standard of living than they did as children. This objective was important to my parents. So maybe I learned it from them, but then again, maybe it is just human nature because I have seen that motivation time and again in many countries and many different cultures.IM: What steps have you taken personally to plant flags overseas?JT: There are many. I live in Europe and have travelled to over 50 countries. The company I founded is European-based, but has a global customer base. My wife and youngest son are British. I could go on, but those are the ones that immediately come to mind.IM: In a previous conversation, it was mentioned to me that Doug Casey’s book, The International Man, was an important influence on your way of thinking. Can you elaborate on that?JT: Yes, it was one of the sources of good information that I read back in the 1970s. There was not a lot of material back then on how to internationalize your life, which was my objective. So I bought a copy and learned a lot from it. There are two ways to gain useful experience – “reading” and “doing”. Both are invaluable.TrendsIM: In a recent article, you mention the “Last Plane Account“, which basically suggested setting up structures overseas so that if all domestic assets were seized, one would have a nest-egg available to still live a comfortable life. When did you first realize such a plan was needed for US citizens?JT: The name “last plane account” was an informal one that we used in Chase to refer to a marketing program that explained the necessity for southeast Asian businessmen to have bank deposits outside their home countries. The idea was that if turmoil wracked the country where you lived, you and your family could get on the “last plane” and live somewhere else in the same manner to which you were accustomed, even if you needed to leave behind many assets – like a house and your company’s factory.Remember, the domino theory still prevailed back in the 1970s, and everyone wondered and worried about what country in that part of the world would be the next to fall to communism. If it did, you clearly would want some of your wealth invested globally so that you and your family could live comfortably if forced to flee your home country, or just because you simply chose to do so. The idea was that you could then return to your home country once a sane political climate was restored with a rule of law that protected property rights.At first I didn’t realize that everyone needs a “last plane account” – even Americans. But my thinking began to change not long after moving to Thailand. I became friends with a wealthy Thai businessman whose family lost a fortune in real estate when the Chinese Red Army under Mao took control of that country. They left China only with their suitcases, which fortunately for them carried some gold and jade. After fleeing China, they settled in Thailand and through hard work re-built their fortune with the capital they were able to bring with them. It was actually a story that I eventually heard many times over the years I was in Asia.Then in late 1974, I agreed to move to Beirut, Lebanon, which back then was a plum assignment in the bank. However, the civil war there began before I could pack my bags, and because I had a family, the assignment was cancelled with mutual consent. It was a wake-up call for me. Like the experience related to me by my Chinese friend, it opened my eyes, and I began to really recognize that there are a lot of unsafe places in the world. More to the point, over the years I’ve seen dozens of countries change from good to bad, while some changed from bad to good.Sometimes the change occurs rapidly, as it did in Lebanon. Sometimes the change occurs slowly, which is what happens in most countries. The change can be so slow as to be imperceptible to most people living there, which is one of the reasons I recommend that people live for a time in different countries. It gives you a different perspective.When I look at the States, Thailand and the other countries where I have lived, from outside, I see things that I missed when I lived there. I think this perspective is important to understand that we live in a world that is constantly changing. So regardless of which country you were born, I recommend that everyone travel and live abroad, at least for a time, to gain some useful and unique experiences. When you do, I think you will better understand the reasons for a “last plane account” and appreciate the need to prepare for an uncertain future.IM: Can you tell us what such an account would consist of?JT: Clearly, I would not recommend today what we at Chase were offering back then, namely, bank deposits. These do not make sense in today’s topsy-turvy world.I would put into the account the same thing that you would put in any portfolio. There would be undervalued assets as well as safe assets in a mix that would enable you to sleep well at night knowing you were prepared to live comfortably somewhere in the world if you left your home country.The safe assets would of course be gold and a home for shelter. The undervalued assets would primarily be stocks, particularly a globally diversified portfolio and one that paid reasonable dividends to provide income. I don’t recommend commercial real estate, but other real estate – like an apartment building, farmland or timberland – could also be a safe asset in the right jurisdiction.Remember though, there is a fundamental difference between visible wealth and wealth that cannot easily be seen. Visible wealth is always a potential target for governments around the world looking for assets to tax or even confiscate, and one must factor in that risk. In fact, this risk is one of the reasons for diversifying globally. Diversification always mitigates risk.IM: With all this money printing in the world do you see hyperinflation in the US dollar and hence the world?JT: Sadly, yes, I do expect hyperinflation, and we are getting very close. Hyperinflation manifests itself in two ways, depending on the nature of the currency. In Weimar Germany in the 1920s and Zimbabwe more recently, very few people had bank accounts. Nearly all commerce was conducted with cash-currency. In contrast, in Argentina in 1991 nearly everyone had a bank account, with the result that nearly all commerce was conducted with deposit-currency. In other words, payment for goods and services was conducted through the banking system with checks, wire transfers, plastic cards and the like. All three countries experienced hyperinflation, which always has the same cause, regardless how it manifests itself. It boils down to a simple chain of events.A government spends too much, forcing it to borrow. Because governments have difficulties cutting back on spending when they have unlimited access to their central bank and no external discipline or constraints imposed on politicians’ aspirations to spend, eventually these borrowings become bigger than the market has the capacity or willingness to lend. The central bank then steps in to create the currency the government wants to spend, whether it is running a printing press in Zimbabwe or the computer in Argentina.Both examples are generally referred to as “printing money”, but now it is usually called “quantitative easing”. Maybe governments think that by giving it a name change, the process somehow becomes acceptable. Call it what you will, but it is the same thing and if not stopped, inevitably leads to hyperinflation. Given that the president and Congress don’t seem willing to change direction, and given their plans for more spending and more deficits, the US dollar is clearly on the path toward hyperinflation.IM: If so, what will the end of the US Dollar look like for the man on the street?JT: It will look like the Continental, America’s first currency, or the currencies of dozens of other countries that followed the same path. The dollar will be worth nothing. This outcome is particularly tragic because we failed to learn from the framers of the American Constitution. One of the reasons they aimed to create “a more perfect Union” was because of the economic hardships and dislocations caused by the collapse of the Continental. They purposefully created with the Constitution a common market and common currency. Their intent was made clear by one of the first acts of the new Congress, The Coinage Act, which George Washington signed into law in 1792. It was the law of the land until being ignored in the 20th century by politicians wanting to expand the scope of the federal government. To achieve that aim, they needed to spend money. But they could not do that with the dollar being tied to gold and silver.Precious metals cannot be created “out of thin air”, so they provide the necessary discipline on government spending. The US, and indeed, the entire world has abandoned that discipline and money is now created capriciously by central bankers.IM: For those who have followed the gold and silver commentaries for the last number of years, they will already know that you are exceptionally bullish on precious metals right now. However, in your mind, could something happen where the trend towards higher prices stalls for a while or potentially even reverses?JT: I assume you are asking about a major price reversal, and not just some temporary setback. In my view, only one thing would cause that. There would have to be a massive reduction in the quantity of dollars, and I don’t see any prospect for that. The Federal Reserve doesn’t seem intent on doing that given it has said it is committed to preventing deflation.Of course, at any moment in time the price of gold or silver can have a setback. That is the nature of bull markets. But don’t let these periodic corrections shake you out of the market. The key to successful investing is to accumulate assets when they are undervalued, and continue to hold them through periodic corrections. Only sell them when they become overvalued. It sounds easy, but can be hard to do in practice because people often get emotionally attached to assets, be it a house, a stock or gold.To eliminate the emotion, I always rely upon objective measures of value. Two that I use most frequently for gold and often write about are my Fear Index and my Gold Money Index. Both of these indicate that gold remains undervalued. But aside from these objective measures, I think there is also a good anecdotal one. I expect all fiat currencies to collapse. Consequently, you will not sell your gold when it becomes overvalued; you will spend it. In other words, gold will once again become currency, which is one of the goals we are working toward at GoldMoney. At that future time when gold becomes overvalued, you will take the gold you are now accumulating and spend it to invest in assets that are undervalued or spend it buying consumer goods. We are still far away from that moment.IM: What are your thoughts on possible confiscation from government or forced buy back of gold from its citizens, and is there some safety by owning precious metals with a service like GoldMoney?JT: The future of course cannot be predicted, but we nevertheless know that respect for private property is declining in many parts of the world. In the 20th century gold was confiscated by Lenin in Russia, Hitler in Germany, Mussolini in Italy and Franklin Roosevelt in the US. So don’t assume that confiscations can’t happen in the 21st century. I always say to prepare for the worst, while hoping for the best. In this way you will still get by, even if by an unfortunate turn of events the worst possible outcome happens.Because the future is unknowable, it is impossible to determine the perfect strategy to take advantage of future events. The best we can do is to protect ourselves from wealth destroying future events, like confiscation. I believe the best way to do that is through diversification. In other words, don’t put all your eggs in one basket, and GoldMoney can be helpful in diversifying your precious metals.When you buy physical gold and silver – and I only recommend physical metal, not any of the paper products purporting to offer physical metal – there are only two ways to do it. Buy it and store it yourself, or buy it and have someone store it for you, which is what GoldMoney offers.Each alternative has advantages and disadvantages. If you store gold yourself, you have it at hand, but run the risk of theft. Also, if you need to sell, it can be a bother to take your coins or bars to a dealer, who may then require them to be refined, which adds cost.With GoldMoney, you do not have your gold at hand, but it is stored for you in specialized vaults in London, Zurich and/or Hong Kong at your choice and is insured. You also have nearly instant liquidity. You can easily sell your metal back to GoldMoney. The proceeds are immediately wired to your bank account, which, depending on the time zone in which you live, may mean you receive the proceeds the same day. It is also convenient because all transactions are done online 24/7.GoldMoney BasicsInternational Man: You’ve referenced it a few times already, but, for those of our readers not yet familiar with GoldMoney.com, can you give us a really brief overview? James Turk: GoldMoney allows customers in 105 different countries to buy gold, silver, platinum and palladium online, and store these metals at secure vaults in London, Zurich and Hong Kong. Customers can conduct transactions in nine major currencies and also take physical delivery of their gold in the form of 100 gram and 1kg gold bars. Our governance procedures and regular audits provide assurances of integrity to our customers that their precious metals are being stored safely with us. IM: What prompted you to start GoldMoney in the first place? JT: The idea for GoldMoney came to me in 1979. I had been reading extensively, including many great works like Howard Buffett’s brilliant 1948 speech and dozens of books on money, particularly those of Ludwig von Mises and the Austrian school of economics. I re-read Atlas Shrugged and some of Ayn Rand’s other works. Another influential book from back then that comes to mind is The Market for Liberty. From these and other works I began to understand the importance of re-establishing gold’s role as currency. It was clear to me that human liberty and gold were inextricably interlinked because gold money controls government spending. When this spending has limits, so do government depredations. I wanted to live in a world where property rights were respected and the rule of law was followed, and naturally assumed other people shared that same aim, which meant that my idea for creating a technologically advanced gold money offered a profit opportunity. Of course the technology to make my vision possible was not available back then, nor did I think the technology would become available in my lifetime. Fortunately, the rapid advances in communications and computers over the next twenty years eventually made GoldMoney possible. My son and I formed GoldMoney in the late 1990s, which we launched in early 2001. I have not lost sight of my original vision and the important outcome that can be achieved by enabling gold to circulate once again as currency. IM: What makes GoldMoney different from some of the other options out there? JT: Buying allocated physical bullion, as facilitated by GoldMoney, guarantees you hold and own the metal in your name. Our stringent governance procedures and regular audits provide our customers with assurances that their metals are safe and that they are the undisputed owners. The freedom and ease of accessing the global precious metals markets online, 24 hours a day, and the variety of metals, storage facilities and accepted currencies offer a high level of comfort and diversification. This makes GoldMoney a uniquely secure and convenient precious metals provider. IM: Can you briefly take us through the process of signing up for an account? JT: People with residency in the US, Canada and 42 other countries are eligible for fast tracking – meaning they can sign up for what we call a Basic Holding quickly and easily online by clicking on the “Free Sign Up” button on our website GoldMoney.com. The entire process takes only a few minutes and customers can start funding their Holding in order to purchase metals immediately. Customers can upgrade to a Full Holding free of charge at any time. IM: In your mind, what is the single greatest reason someone signs up for a GoldMoney account – for speculating on the price of the metal, for savings, as a way to internationalize, something else? JT: People may of course have different reasons for opening a Holding. But I always say that precious metals should be thought of as your savings rather than as something that you “invest” in or speculate on. After all, an ounce of gold today is exactly the same as an ounce of gold 50 years ago. Like a quart, ton or meter, it is a consistent measuring stick. What changes is the value of currency in relation to that ounce of gold. Over time, the purchasing power of gold is preserved – in contrast to fiat currencies, where your purchasing power declines. More and more people are realizing this, and come to the conclusion that it makes sense to hold gold and other precious metals rather than national currencies, particularly now because one hardly earns any interest income with today’s artificially low interest rates. As precious metals regain mass acceptance as a medium of exchange and store of value, those who have been steadily accumulating them will recognise the benefits.Gold Money ChallengesIM: What are the challenges with running a company like GoldMoney? JT: There are of course many, just like there are in any company. But as we face and overcome these challenges, we always have one objective in mind, which is to serve our customers’ best interests. One of the many things I learned from Von Mises is that the “Customer is King”, which is a guiding principle always foremost in our minds and actions. In short, companies are built by serving their customers’ best interests efficiently and continuously. IM: Over the past year, I’ve heard some of the announcements that GoldMoney has had to suspend or even shut down operations in various jurisdictions such as the Netherlands. Is this something you feel can be rectified so that you can enter such markets again? If so, how? JT: This is unique to the Netherlands, owing to the unusual burdens placed on us by the Dutch regulators, the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM). The AFM has the view that precious metals are included within the concept of “investment objects” which are to be regulated by the AFM. We are of the opinion that Netherlands’ regulation is not applicable to GoldMoney because we operate in Jersey, British Channel Islands, rather than within the Netherlands – but we have been unsuccessful in changing the AFM’s view. As we do not want to subject ourselves, and by extension our customers, to unnecessary and unpredictable regulatory requirements, we reached the difficult conclusion that the only way to resolve this situation was to cease all business with individuals resident in the Netherlands. We do have every intention of accepting business from Dutch residents again in the future should the regulatory environment there change. IM: I have an associate who has a GoldMoney account and his wife has another. For a while, he would regularly transfer goldgrams to her without issue. As of the beginning of the year, that particular function has been suspended. Can you tell us why that happened and whether that particular benefit of your service will be implemented again? JT: Our decision to turn off the facility to transfer metals between GoldMoney customers in all countries except Jersey is based on lack of customer demand and increasing regulatory burdens. It is our intention to offer this service again in the future, which will depend on customer feedback and regulatory changes. IM: If a company like GoldMoney can’t use gold as money because of legislative and regulatory burdens, what does this say about any other competing currency? JT: Governments today seem to think that they should enjoy monopoly control of money and currency, even though both are products of the market just like any other good or service. Consequently, all free-market currencies will have a difficult time in gaining a foothold against national currencies. But because national currencies are losing purchasing power rapidly, it is inevitable that gold will once again return to its traditional and rightful role at the center of global commerce. After all, gold has been money for 5000 years, and it still preserves purchasing power better than any national currency, which for 40 years now have been backed by nothing. But the growing financial and monetary problems today make clear that this 40-year experiment with fiat currency is going badly. This result is inevitable, as proven by the dozens of other attempts throughout history to make fiat currency work through central planning and control. Eventually gold returns to center stage as the dominant money and currency in global commerce, and I suspect that this time will be no different given that the future of fiat currency is looking increasingly doubtful.Protecting GoldMoney ClientsIM: What safeguards has GoldMoney established to ensure that the person who buys physical metal is protected if the business happens to fail? Would they lose their assets? JT: Although this is an extreme unlikely scenario, customers will receive their physical metal in any of the gold, silver, platinum and palladium bars we offer, provided they have a balance greater than one bar. This includes the London Good Delivery Bars, as well as the 100 gram and 1 kilogram gold bars. Alternatively, customers can receive the equivalent value of their metals in one of the 9 national currencies we offer. A court appointed liquidator would complete this winding-up process. IM: How does GoldMoney ensure that the goldgram amount is actually in the client’s account? Couldn’t it all be just a game of numbers? JT: The quantity of metals allocated to customers’ Holdings that is recorded in GoldMoney’s database is equal to the amount of metal that is being stored in the vaults at all times. This one-to-one ratio is always maintained and forms a key part of our governance model. 100% customer ownership is assured by top-quality independent third-party reports and audits from the vault operators, Inspectorate – a commodity testing and inspection firm – and by regular audits by a big-4 accounting firm. GoldMoney is simply a guardian of its customers’ assets. IM: When someone buys metal from GoldMoney, are they officially an owner of their holdings or simply another creditor to the company itself? JT: Customers who own precious metals with GoldMoney own it in the form of allocated physical metal. This means that they are direct owners of their metals, and that GoldMoney does not have any claim on its customers’ assets. Customers’ metals do not appear on GoldMoney’s balance sheet, meaning that our customers do not have any counterparty risk.Common QuestionsInternational Man: What are some of the more common reasons people say they don’t want to use GoldMoney? James Turk: Some people prefer to have their gold and silver in their hands. They want to be able to touch and feel it. Given all that’s gone in the financial world over the last few years, and with the MF Global debacle still fresh in people’s minds, this is understandable. But there are real risks to storing large quantities of metal at home. It is therefore natural that people would look to store their metal in other ways and other countries, and this is where GoldMoney can help. GoldMoney’s governance and audit procedures are rigorous and stringent and the Certificates & Reports are available for review on our website. With regards to storing metals at home or some other private location, GoldMoney can help customers by supplying physical metal, as we deliver 100-gram and 1-kilo gold bars produced by Baird & Co. of London to our customers’ home address. The main risk of storing metals at home is burglary, and liquidity and geographical diversification are limited. IM: What would you say to someone who would be a bit nervous buying “paper” / “promise to pay” gold through GoldMoney? JT: GoldMoney does not sell any “paper gold“. It only sells physical metal, which is always what I recommend owning. “Paper gold” offers exposure to the gold price, but that is all. The buyer does not own gold, but rather a claim to gold. Futures, options, ETFs and gold certificates are examples of paper-gold products, and they all have counterparty risk. None of these items give you the guaranteed 100% ownership of allocated gold that you have when transacting with GoldMoney. Because all customers’ metals within GoldMoney are stored in vaults, and because we deal exclusively in the physical bullion markets with a variety of dealers, there will always be bidders for customers who wish to sell, and sellers for those customers eager to buy. Bringing supply and demand into equilibrium is what the price discovery process is all about. Therefore, GoldMoney will always be able to honor your sell or buy order in a prompt manner.Logistical QuestionsIM: What are the options available to customers for taking delivery of their gold? JT: Customers can take physical delivery of their gold at any time in the form of 100 gram and 1 kilogram bars. These bars, which have a purity of 99.99%, are refined by Baird & Co. Ltd. in London and shipped to our customers’ home address by insured mail. The customer places the delivery order online through their Holding, and we will automatically process it. We can also arrange the delivery of 400oz Good Delivery Bars. If you wish to diversify your metals and move your metal balance in your Holding partly or entirely for storage in a different country, you also have the option to do that when logged into your Holding. IM: Where are the holdings stored? JT: Customers can store their gold and silver at VIA MAT vaults in London, Zurich and Hong Kong. You can also store gold and silver at a G4S vault in Hong Kong. Platinum is stored by VIA MAT in Zurich and Hong Kong, and the same company also stores palladium in Hong Kong. IM: Which are the most popular of these companies to store holdings? JT: The largest holdings are at VIA MATs gold and silver vaults in London and Zurich.MiscellaneousIM: Do you have any merchants that currently allow you to purchase items with GoldMoney? JT: Currently there are no merchants that accept GoldMoney because we have turned-off the payment capability to customers in all countries except Jersey, where we are based. IM: What is currently the breakdown among your client base in terms of allocations between gold, silver, platinum and palladium? What metal the most popular? JT: With the launch of GoldMoney in 2001 we offered gold only and introduced silver in 2006. Platinum followed in 2009 and Palladium in January 2011. Given gold’s long established bona fides as money, you probably won’t be surprised to learn that most of our customers’ metals in terms of US dollars are held in gold. However, silver is a close second to gold in terms of total USD value. Platinum and palladium holdings with us are smaller, though the popularity of these metals is likely to grow. The amount of metals and currencies held on behalf of our customers are disclosed in the monthly report on our website. IM: What is the average size of account in GoldMoney? JT: It has been growing since inception, and is presently $103,000. However, the median account size is only about $10,000. There is no minimum or maximum amount you can purchase and hold, so we have a wide range of customers from small to large. IM: For those who want to find out more, what’s the best way? JT: Our website www.goldmoney.com offers detailed information about our services and governance procedures. We also have a Research section that provides background information on the precious metal markets. The Frequently Asked Questions section offers guidance for new and prospective customers and our customer support team is always happy to answer any questions – by phone, email or through our secure internal message system. IM: Sir, it was a pleasure. Thank you.JT: Thank you for the opportunity to speak with you as well.[To interact with other international men and women all around the world, consider joining the International Man Network. It’s completely free to join, plus you’ll have access to a private forum of thousands of like-minded individuals who are sharing their “boots on the ground” tactics and experience on how to internationalize one’s life and wealth. Sign up here.]About the Author: Inspired by the work of best-selling author and renowned speculator Doug Casey, International Man is a global network of freedom-seekers, investors, adventurers, speculators and expatriates looking to live an international lifestyle – be it asset, income, personal diversification or any combination of the three. Learn more at www.internationalman.com.last_img read more

In This Issue BLS reports 171000 new jobs Bi

first_imgIn This Issue.*BLS reports 171,000 new jobs. *Bias to buy dollars intensifies. *RBA to announce a rate cut this afternoon. *Euro falls though 200-Day moving avg.And, Now, Today’s Pfennig For Your Thoughts!Who Is The BLS Attempting To Fool?Good day.  And a Marvelous Monday to you! The last day before the Big Election Day here in the U.S. I hope you all enjoyed the Big Boss, Frank Trotter’s, analysis of the election, in the Sunday Pfennig & Pfriends. On top of all the other things that Frank does better than most people, he also writes! He will be able to fall back on that when he retires one day. And he’ll be better than anyone else doing it at that time!Now, you may think I’m just trying to build up some brownie points with the Big Boss. But I’ve told him this to his face for years now, and have invited him to participate in the Pfennig, whenever he feels like it. Besides, at my age, I’ve learned that those brownie points don’t really matter when the rubber meets the road!OK. On Friday, I told you that the bias to buy dollars was strong, and that traders were pricing in a disappointing Jobs Jamboree. However, a funny thing happened on the way to the forum. Instead of a disappointing Jobs number for October, the number was questionable once again. Yes, I’ll just throw that out there, and get it on the discussion board, Front & Center this morning.  Oh! And traders changed horses in the middle of the stream, and decided that the number of jobs created was worth switching their reason to buy dollars.So. The Bureau of Labor Statistic (BLS) said that the economy added 171,000 jobs in October.  Here’s what questionable. of the 171,000, 90,000 were added by the BLS for the birth/ death adjustment.  Now, why do I say that 90,000 jobs added out of thin air, is questionable?  Well, long time readers know that the Birth / Death Model, tries to account for new businesses that open up and aren’t online with reporting jobs yet. (they also are supposed to subtract for businesses that close). And just last week I reported to you that CEO’s had reported that they were laying off and firing large numbers of workers. So, if little old me came across that story, they had to have at least “heard about it” at the BLS, right?  So, then, why would they add 90,000 jobs knowing all too well that more jobs are being lost right now?So, here’s how my mind works.  171,000 minus 90,000 and you get 81,000, which is much closer to the 111,000 I called for on Friday, and. would be considered disappointing, right?  And then to just muddy up the picture even more. The BLS tells us 171,000 jobs were added but the Unemployment Rate increased to 7.9% from 7.8%…  (remember last month, the BLS said we added 114,000 jobs and the unemployment rate fell from 8.1% to 7.8%?)  is your mind spinning around and performing carnival tricks in an attempt to make sense of this Unemployment Rate? Mine is. and that’s why I say the BLS just throws a dart at numbers on the wall to get the rate!OK. if only I could hold to my thought from a month ago that I was not going to let any economic data report that printed before the election carry any weight. Unfortunately, the markets were all over this BLS Jobs data like a cheap suit. So. since I write about the markets, I have to spend time on this. I don’t buy the number. You can’t make me! HA!So. like I said above, currency and metals traders decided to change horses in the middle of the stream, and switched back to the trading pattern that rewards the dollar for strong U.S. economic data.   I think that the overnight markets that were gone for the weekend when the Jobs number printed on Friday, saw this data last night when they returned to their desks, they laughed. The chuckled and probably fell out of their chairs. But, then, they pulled themselves back up, and decided to keep the bias to buy dollars in place.Then in the morning sessions of Europe, the traders there kept the bias to buy dollars in place. The euro has really taken it on the chin in the past week. And there really hasn’t been any news from the Eurozone to make the euro lose 2-cents in the past week. Greece’s Gov’t will present a new austerity package to the Greek Parliament today, with a vote announcement expected on Wednesday. I look for this new package to pass. Look, Greece really has no choice, except to drop out of the euro and default.  So, the Greeks might not like being told that these austerity measures are coming, but there’s not much they can do about, except burn down the library.Tonight, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) will meet. and even though I’ve been telling you how the aggressive calls to cut rates in 2013, have been getting pared back, that doesn’t change what the markets had already priced in. and that is one final cut for 2012. And I believe we’ll see that tonight. The markets are probably thinking the rate cut will come in December, as they are marking up the Aussie dollar (A$) (one of the few currencies in the black this morning) this morning. But. I believe it will come this afternoon. so look for that. but remember, this cut is already priced in. so the actual pain to the A$ will be muted. at least that’s my opinion, and I could be wrong.Well. I really don’t believe that much that happens today and tomorrow, data wise, is going to garner much attention, as all eyes are on the U.S. election tomorrow. I was watching some football yesterday, and the announcers for the Washington Redskins and Carolina Panthers game, said that since 1940, the outcome of the Redskins’ game prior to the election had been the indicator of who wins 17 of 18 times. So. if the Redskins won, the incumbent won, if the Redskins lost the challenger won. Well. if that means anything to you. the Redskins lost yesterday.Funny little indicators always intrigue me, I have no idea why. I guess it plays well with my loving a good conspiracy theory!  I just know that I’ll be so happy to not see election ads on the TV going forward.So, I already told you about the RBA meeting tonight, but that’s not all for this week! We’ll also see the Central banks of the Eurozone (ECB) and the U.K. (BOE) meet this week. I really don’t believe the ECB will have any rabbits up their sleeve, but the BOE could very well, add to their current total of Quantitative Easing (QE).  The outcomes for the euro and the pound sterling won’t be driven by the Central Bank meetings this week though.  But there’s always that “chance”, eh?I’ve watched the price of Gold go from down $1 to up $2.75 this morning, not much movement, not like the further taking down of the shiny metal last week. Did you see the story that appeared late last week that Gold is in short supply in Nepal, and that bullion traders had stopped sales of Gold bars and coins due to a failure by the commercial banks to deliver supply.  Hmmm. and price of Gold fell?  Supply & demand.  What don’t the price manipulators understand?  This is a crying shame that this gets to continue on and on and on, like the Energizer Bunny.The price of Gold is still above the 200-day moving avg, so the shiny metal has that going for it! But, you have to wonder if the price manipulators (PM’s) have the goal of taking down the price of Gold below that 200-day moving avg?  Hey! If you’re not going to get your wrists slapped for doing the deed, then you just continue doing the deed, eh? You betcha!  And like I’ve said before the PM’s would get their due if we could muster up enough demand for physical Gold & Silver. It’s got to be physical, not ETF’s. Folks, those ETF’s are not Physical Gold. and you can’t get physical Gold out of them!The euro fell below its 200-day moving avg overnight (1.2830) to trade in the 1.27 handle.  It’s not been a good year for the euro, as it spent the first 8 months of the year below the moving avg, and then things looked brighter, and the last two months it traded above the moving avg.  This move lower could be the beginning of another period of euro weakness folks. I would watch carefully for that. for this is what normally happens when a currency recovers, and then can’t add to that recovery, it eventually goes for a ride on the slippery slope.Then There Was This. I have a good friend that goes back to my days at Mark Twain Bank. her name is Ellie, and she has an excellent mind for investments (and other things!) she has written a couple of books on investing through the years.. Well, when Ellie sees something that makes a lot of sense, she sends it to me.. As so it was on Saturday, when I received an email from Ellie.  It was my friend John Mauldin’s outside the box article. Here’s a snippet from investment analyst guru, Charles Gave. “So the solution to our current malaise is very simple: We have to stop now. Reduce government spending, stop manipulating money, let market pricing return – or the result will be a vicious cycle of low growth and rising debt, or certain depression.The choice is just as simple for investors: Stick with countries that have avoided the worst of the bad policies, like Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Poland, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong or even Korea. All of these countries either kept fiscal balances and taxes low (or started reducing them), and/or regulated their financial systems to prevent casino madness.Consider certain countries that are improving on the margin. This includes the UK. It also includes China, which is opening its capital account and liberalizing its financial system. “Chuck again. Thanks to Ellie for sending this to me, and thanks to Charles Gave for his thoughts on what needs to happen here in the U.S. and then some choices as alternatives should the U.S. continue down this vicious cycle.To recap. The bias to dollars that existed Friday, was given a boost as the Jobs Jamboree as reported by the BLS showed a rise of 171,000 jobs in October. I say hogwash! But it is what it is.  The RBA meets tonight, and Chuck expects to see a rate cut tonight. The BOE and ECB also meet this week, with only more QE to be announced by the BOE. Greece presented a new austerity package to the Parliament for a vote Wednesday. And Gold gets taken down again.Currencies today 11/5/12. American Style: A$ $1.0360, kiwi .8240, C$ $1.0035, euro 1.2780, sterling 1.5980, Swiss $1.0590, . European Style: rand 8.7365, krone 5.7495, SEK 6.7060, forint 221.05, zloty 3.2265, koruna 19.7405, RUB 31.70, yen 80.25, sing 1.2255, HKD 7.75, INR 54.60, China 6.2447, pesos 13.06, BRL 2.0335, Dollar Index 80.83, Oil $84.87, 10-year 1.69%, Silver $31.07, and Gold. $1,682.40That’s it for today. Happy Birthday Rachel! Ugly steel gray days with raw temperatures, are back for us all to enjoy (NOT!) Typical November. My poor Missouri Tigers outplayed Florida throughout their game last Saturday, but managed to lose it anyway. UGH! Next up is Tennessee this week. Still no hockey. I got out my Blues baseball cap in hopes it will be good luck for a settlement!  Fat chance, eh?  Well. time to go. last day before the election. Like I said I’ll be glad to see it over with! Hopefully we won’t having any hanging chads or any other nonsense with voting fraud. I hope you have a Marvelous Monday!Chuck Butler President EverBank World Markets 1-800-926-4922 www.everbank.comlast_img read more

Ministers on the Isle of Man are to scrap their ve

first_imgMinisters on the Isle of Man are to scrap their version of the UK government’s much-criticised “fitness for work” test, prompting calls by disabled activists for the UK government to follow their lead.The decision, announced to members of Tynwald, the Isle of Man* parliament (pictured), follows years of criticism of the assessment on the island, mirroring concerns raised repeatedly and publicly in the UK.The statement by Treasury minister Alfred Cannan followed a report by Tynwald members into what is known on the island as the personal capability assessment (PCA), which is based on the UK’s work capability assessment (WCA).In the UK, there has been nearly a decade of evidence that the WCA is unsafe, inaccurate, unfair, and lacking in empathy, while it has been repeatedly linked with the deaths of claimants.In November 2015, public health experts from the Universities of Liverpool and Oxford showed in a study that, across England, the process of reassessing incapacity benefit claimants through the WCA between 2010 to 2013 was “associated with” an extra 590 suicides, 279,000 additional cases of self-reported mental health problems, and the prescribing of a further 725,000 anti-depressants.Concerns arose on the Isle of Man after a new scheme was introduced to reassess most of the island’s 2,000 long-term claimants of incapacity benefits through a face-to-face PCA, firstly through a pilot programme in 2012-13 carried out by Atos, the outsourcing giant which was itself being heavily criticised at the time for its role in the assessment process across the UK.The Isle of Man reassessment scheme was then taken on by another company, Dependability Ltd, which eventually had its contract terminated after it emerged that some of the assessments were not being carried out by registered healthcare professionals.Just as in the UK, there were criticisms of the “tick box” nature of the assessment process, the failure to deal fairly with claimants with fluctuating conditions such as ME and multiple sclerosis, and the use of unqualified and unsympathetic assessors.An independent review of the PCA, published in December 2016, reported “widespread” criticism, with concerns about the qualifications of assessors, and an “oversimplified” assessment which was unsuitable for those with more complex impairments.The review added: “Many people believed that they had been treated with a lack of respect and that the system lacked compassion.”It recommended the replacement of the PCA by a new “holistic multidisciplinary assessment” that would be “supportive” of the claimant and “based on trust and compassion underpinned by clear, open and honest communication”, with claimants “fully involved in developing a realistic return to work plan”.A report by a committee of members of Tynwald that supported the recommendations of the independent review was approved by the parliament last November.Cannan has now told the parliament that ministers are “minded to implement” the “complete removal of the existing personal capability assessment process” and replace it with a new “holistic approach”.Any decision to change the relevant regulations will need to be approved by members of Tynwald later this year.A spokesman for the Scottish-based, user-led grassroots network Black Triangle praised the Isle of Man government for taking the decision to scrap the PCA.He said: “We warmly congratulate them. They have done what any humane government would have done and it is now absolutely essential that the UK government follows suit.”A Department for Work and Pensions spokeswoman declined to comment on the Isle of Man government’s decision.But she said in a statement: “We are committed to ensuring that people with health conditions get the right support that they need, and work capability assessments ensure that everyone gets the benefits they are entitled to.“If a claimant’s condition changes then we will consider any new evidence presented by the claimant’s GP or medical professional.“Anyone who disagrees with the outcome of their assessment can appeal the decision.”*The Isle of Man is not part of the UK or European Union, but is a crown dependency with its own parliament and government, although under the supervision of the UK governmentlast_img read more

Disabled people who died in the Grenfell Tower tra

first_imgDisabled people who died in the Grenfell Tower tragedy had their human rights breached by public bodies that failed to plan how they would evacuate their homes in the event of a fire, a report by the equality and human rights watchdog has concluded.The Equality and Human RightsCommission (EHRC) report says the safety of wheelchair-users and other disabled and older people wasoverlooked when they were housed on the top floors of the high-rise building.It says thatdisabled people and other residents of Grenfell Tower and other nearby housingexperienced a series of breaches of their human rights before the fire,including through the failure to ban the combustible cladding that was wrappedaround the building, or at least strengthen rules for its use.But it alsosays that disabled people’s rights were repeatedly breached in the days andmonths after the fire.Disabledpeople, children, migrants and older people were among the 72 people who diedin the Grenfell Tower fire that began in the early hours of 14 June 2017, inhomes managed by the state in west London. The EHRCresearch, carried out with the social policy think-tank Raceon the Agenda,suggests that the right to life of disabled people, older people and familieswith children was not properly considered in fire safety arrangements, with“particular concerns” about the lack of appropriate planning for evacuatingdisabled people and other residents.There isalso evidence that the safety notice given to Grenfell residents was onlyavailable in English, a language not spoken by many of them.The report alsohighlights a continued lack of support after the fire, amounting to inhuman anddegrading treatment, particularly in “the inconsistent, and sometimes absent,immediate and long-term support such as medical treatment, counselling, mentalhealth care and adequate housing”.The reportsuggests there were breaches of the right to life; the right to safe, adequatehousing; and the right to freedom from cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment;while disabled people and other groups also faced discrimination in how theywere treated after the tragedy.The reportsays: “The fact that people with limited mobility were living high up inGrenfell Tower, and faced greater difficulties escaping the fire, raisesimportant questions about discrimination against certain groups, accessibilitystandards, and whether authorities assessed the impact on disabled people ofallocating housing in Grenfell Tower.”The reportincludes a series of examples of how disabled people had their rights breachedin the days, weeks and months after the fire.One disabledwoman, who had been left traumatised by losing five members of her family inthe fire, had her out-of-work disability benefits cut after being assessed by agovernment contractor just five days later. The woman,who lost her brother, his wife, and their three children in the fire, had beenassessed for her fitness for work on 19 June 2017, five days after the fire.Her husband,her full-time carer, told researchers that when they told the healthcareprofessional carrying out the work capability assessment that she had lost herfive relatives in the fire, “she didn’t care” and “didn’t consider thesuffering” that his wife had been through.His wife hadpreviously been in the support group for employment and support allowance, forthose not expected to carry out any work-related activity, but after theassessment she was placed by the Department for Work and Pensions in thework-related activity group.The report’sresearchers were told that she had since been told to attend a work trainingscheme, even though her health had worsened since the fire.One disabledolder person, who lives on the 14th floor of a block of flats nearGrenfell Tower, told the researchers that he told his children “every day” thatif there was a similar fire to the one that devastated Grenfell, they shouldleave him to struggle down the stairs on his own.He said:“There are five floors above me… So, if I go down and I stop in the middle, thepeople behind me will not be able to pass. So, we discussed all these issues.”The reportfound that none of the local residents they had spoken to who had been forcedto leave their homes after the fire had accepted permanent accommodation, butsome said they had felt pressured to return home or take unsuitable offers.One wheelchair-userwas pressured to accept the offer of a permanent flat, even though it was notwheelchair-accessible and she could not access some of the rooms.She wastold: “Oh don’t worry, we’ll get a carer in to look after you, help you outwith the kids.”She was thentold that if she did not agree to move into the flat, she would be viewed asmaking herself intentionally homeless.The reportalso describes a wheelchair-user with young children – believed to be the samewoman – who was left in emergency housing with just one room and no cookingfacilities and had to visit the local swimming pool if she wanted a shower.The report, GrenfellResidents’ Access to Public Services and Support – part of the commission’sFollowing Grenfell project – describes the lived experience of people who hadbeen “displaced, traumatised and distressed” by the fire.It shows the“ongoing difficulties and uncertainty they have faced in accessing a range ofadvice and support services such as housing, immigration, welfare support andhealthcare”.Among itsconclusions, the report says: “There was poor recognition of additional needsand reasonable adjustments when making housing decisions, particularly fordisabled people, older people, women and Muslim families. “Residentsdescribed the dire state of both emergency and temporary accommodation whenbeing rehoused, posing a threat to their physical and mental health.”EHRC’sFollowing Grenfell project aims to influence the Grenfell Tower Inquiry, otherpublic bodies and the public about the equality and human rights issues raisedby the fire and its aftermath.David Isaac,EHRC’s chair, said: “Everyone has the right to life and the right to safe,adequate housing, but the residents of Grenfell Tower were tragically let downby public bodies that had a duty to protect them.“It is our hope that the Grenfell Inquiry finds this information relevant and useful as they continue with their work, but we also need to see action taken by public bodies so we never see a repeat of this tragedy.”Picture: Close-up of Grenfell Tower with banners in June 2018 (c) by Carcharoth is licensed under Creative CommonsAttribution-Share Alike 4.0 International A note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS…last_img read more