LBS Workers Union Upset Over Low Budgetary Allotment

first_imgLBS Workers Union head, Mr. DorborPlans to boycott elections process, if…Workers of the Liberia Broadcasting System (LBS) have expressed disappointment over the low budgetary allotment allocated to the system in this fiscal year. Moses Dorbor, president of the union, who spoke to journalists during a press conference, said despite appeals made during the budget hearing, the crafters of the national budget allotted US$750,000 to LBS for the 2017/18 fiscal year for operations and salary issues.He said the amount represents a significant reduction from previous budget allotments to the LBS, which has failed to address salary adjustments or increments in the past.“LBS employees who work for the national broadcaster remain the least paid among government workers and have not had the opportunity of salary increments since 2005/6,” he said.Mr. Dorbor said LBS, a national entity that focuses on propagating government policies and programs, pays its reporters, for example, a monthly salary of L$9,000, “which is unfair,” adding that they plan to boycott the elections process.According to him, the LBS employees have over the years committed their lives to promoting the government and its key actors, but continue to be overlooked in the budget preparation process, something workers see as disappointing. President Dorbor explains that the low budgetary allotment to LBS continues to keep the employees among the lowest income earners in the country as the system’s management has said time and again that it cannot increase workers’ salaries because of the amount of money given it by the government.“The LBS workers union expresses grave disappointment over the failure of the honorable National Legislature to raise the budget of the state broadcaster to a considerable level to enable the entity effectively discharge its statutory duties,” he added.This move by the lawmakers, he said, amounts to denying the Liberian people access to adequate information and education, “especially during this critical period in our nation’s history where they are about to witness a key transition that has not taken place for about seven decades.”It maybe recalled that during the budget hearings, the leadership of the LBS workforce pleaded with the Legislature to increase the entity’s budget to at least US$1.5 million to enable the management to boost its broadcast facilities across the country, as well as increase the wages of workers of the system.“We believe that our lawmakers who gave us the assurance that no efforts would be spared to address the LBS situation, but instead chose to make a mockery out of the system by just adding US$50,000 to the previous budget, which was also cut down by the crafters of the current national budget,” he added.According to Dorbor, the workers are particularly disappointed with lawmakers from the southeastern region of the country, where LBS is poised to install a new broadcast equipment.“The question here is that how do lawmakers expect the equipment, when it is installed in the absence of adequate budget? We are saying that it is unbelievable for people who are the direct representatives of the citizens in government to ignore the priority needs of the masses,” he added.He used the medium to inform Liberians that the staff of LBS, especially those on air, are the “longest hour service workers on a daily basis among government employees and subsequently they are the most underpaid in the government.”“Imagine newsroom staff starting their duties at eight in the morning and closing by ten at night only to receive what can be described as peanuts, taking into consideration the current exchange rate. We strongly believe this is unfair to the workers who have committed themselves to providing information and education to the people, which are vital to their everyday lives. We are, however, now convinced that legislators who professed to be direct representatives of the Liberian people in government do not actually represent the interest of the masses,” he said.“Therefore, while it is true that we are not politicians, it is important that we make the Liberian people understand the unfolding development surrounding the funding gap of LBS operations. This budget shortfall will adversely affect elections coverage; meaning plans earmarked by LBS management to provide media coverage of the election activities across the country will not be fully executed. This will deny you, the Liberian people, rights to information and education you will need to make an informed decision on the caliber of leaders you need to elect.“Finally, we think it is about time that the Public Broadcaster Act before the National Legislature be passed into law so as to give the national broadcaster free hands to work for the Liberian people.“In the absence of the passage of this Act, LBS will continue to be strangulated and the Liberian people will continue to be denied their rights to access to the state broadcast house in the years to come,” he concluded.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Technician slapped with attempted murder charge

first_imgA technician of D’Urban Backlands Squatting Area, Georgetown, was on Monday remanded to prison on an attempted murder charge.Accused: Himchan Kenswin (centre) being escorted by PoliceHimchan Kenswin was not allowed to plead to the indictable charge which stated that on April 14, 2018 at D’Urban Backlands he unlawfully and maliciously wounded Trevor Smith with intent to murder him.The prosecution is contending that following the incident the 22-year-old fled to the interior and was only captured on June 7, 2018.Reports are on the day of the incident, Smith reportedly requested that Kenswin move from the stairs of his home. The defendant allegedly refused, which prompted Smith to file a complaint with the Police.Upon Smith’s return, Kenswin confronted him about the Police report and allegedly dealt him several lashes to his head with a piece of wood.Smith was taken to the Georgetown Public Hospital where he was admitted with serious head injuries.Kenswin was remanded to prison by Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan. The case will continue on June 18, 2018.last_img read more

COUNCILLOR WANTS HSE TO ENSURE DOCTORS IN DONEGAL HAVE STANDARD OF ENGLISH

first_imgA Donegal council is calling on the Health Service Executive to make sure doctors have fluency in the English language.Buncrana Town Council backed a motion by Cllr Mary Kelly.Cllr Kelly made the call after a number of constituents claimed they could not understand doctors at various medical facilities locally. Cllr Kelly told Donegal Daily the situation is becoming so serious that she fears a patient will be misdiagnosed if something is not done.“I raised the issue because I fear it is a genuine cause for concern and it is only getting worse.“A number of people have come to me with various incidents and expressed their concern.“People are embarrassed if they cannot understand a doctor and they simply agree with them in the end and that is a dangerous thing. “I do fear that there will be a misdiagnosis if something is not done,” she said.  COUNCILLOR WANTS HSE TO ENSURE DOCTORS IN DONEGAL HAVE STANDARD OF ENGLISH was last modified: May 14th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:cllr mary kellyHSElast_img read more

Humboldt State football set to play annual spring game under the Redwood Bowl lights

first_imgArcata >> Over the years, Friday night football at the Redwood Bowl has been usually reserved for Arcata High School home games.Come tonight, the big boys will get to turn back the clock a little bit.Rather than a traditional Saturday afternoon conclusion to spring workouts, the Humboldt State football team will host its annual spring game at the Redwood Bowl under Friday night lights, with a 6 p.m. start time scheduled at the Redwood Bowl.“It’s going to be a little different,” said …last_img read more

Over $350m for Horn of Africa relief

first_img29 August 2011 The African Union (AU) last week secured over US$351-million in cash and some $28-million in kind at a pledging conference for the drought in the Horn of Africa. The South African government responded to the humanitarian crisis by raising R8-million towards the famine relief programme, R4-million of which was donated to the South African NGO, Gift of the Givers, towards transportation and logistical costs of delivering aid to Somalia. The AU pledging conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia last Thursday sought to fill the $1-billion gap in the $2.4-billion needed to address the humanitarian crisis in the Horn of Africa. Representatives from China, Japan, Germany, India, Brazil, Canada, Australia, Venezuela, Azerbaijan, United Arab Emirates and Mexico were also among the attendees. Compounded by conflict Countries of the Horn of Africa have been gripped by severe drought and famine – the worst in 60 years, said AU Commission Chairperson Jean Ping, adding that the situation in Somalia had been compounded by conflict and insecurity, lack of access to affected areas, high food prices, and human and livestock diseases. Jerry John Rawlings, former president of Ghana and AU High Representative for Somalia, said African governments needed to contribute at least $50-million urgently to the AU Humanitarian Disaster Fund. According to Ping, Ethiopia and Kenya have been making huge contributions by opening their doors to Somalis, receiving them in large numbers, even though they themselves have been affected by the drought.center_img On Thursday South Africa pledged a further $280 000 for relief efforts in the region. Addressing the root cause South Africa, which has been providing support to the vulnerable communities in Somalia, was represented at the pledging conference by International Relations and Cooperation Deputy Minister Marius Fransman. Source: BuaNews Senior officials from member states as well as heads and representatives of regional organisations and AU partners gathered at the conference organised under the theme, “One Africa, One Voice against Hunger”. Fransman said South Africa would continue to work with the AU, the Africa Group in Rome and the UN in general to ensure not only that immediate humanitarian relief operations and needs were being addressed, but to strike a balance between the short-term relief responses and the need for development in the long term to address the root causes of the crisis. “If we do not act urgently, they face slow, certain death by starvation,” he said.last_img read more

Film festival for South African and international stories

first_img14 July 2015The opening film, Ayanda, at the 36th Durban International Film Festival (Diff) sets a feel-good, ‘coming of age’ theme for the first night at this year’s festival.It will take place from 16 to 26 July. Hosted by the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Creative Arts, the event will attract film-lovers and industry representatives from across Africa and abroad.“The Diff is a ten-day celebration of world class cinema which screens new feature, documentary and short films from around the globe with a special focus on African film,” says festival organisers.AyandaSet in Yeoville, Johannesburg, Ayanda is about a 21-year-old woman who fights to save her late father’s legacy – a car repair shop – when it faces closure.“She’s thrown into a world of greasy overalls, gender stereotypes and abandoned vintage cars once loved, now in need of a young woman’s re-inventive touch to bring them back to life again,” reads the festival’s website.The film stars Fulu Mugovhani and Nigerian actor OC Ukeje, with a South African cast including Ntathi Moshesh, Kenneth Nkosi, Jafta Mamabola, Thomas Gumede, Sihle Xaba and veteran star of stage and screen Vanessa Cooke.“We are pleased that this feel-good film will open this year’s festival,” says festival director, Pedro Pimenta. “The opening film of this, the most prestigious international film event in SA, needs to reflect a clear priority established by the festival to reach and develop local audiences.”Movie director Sara Blecher says they are very proud of the film and the team is thrilled it’s being used to open the festival. “The film had a very successful screening in Cannes last month and we look forward to screening it to festival-goers in Durban,” she says.“Ayanda celebrates the diversity of our country and revels in the fact that we are a multicultural, colourful and exciting melting pot of Africa,” says co-producer Terry Pheto. “With this film we have tried to capture the Afropolitan nature of our country and the energy of its people.”Other screeningsThe documentary Coming of Age follows teenagers over two years as they grow up deep in the southern African mountain kingdom of Lesotho.Other African documentaries include Beats of the Antonov which portrays the musical lives of a war-torn community in Sudan, Sembene! which documents the life and career of African master Ousmane Sembene, and Paths to Freedom, which explores the genesis of Namibia’s armed struggle against South Africa.South African documentaries include Blood Lions, which follows a South African conservationist and an American hunter on their journey through the lion hunting industry, Glory Game – The Joost van der Westhuizen Story chronicles the famous rugby player’s battle with Motor Neuron Disease, and The Shore Break documents the attempts by a foreign mining company to mine titanium in the Eastern Cape.The line-up will also feature Breathe – Umphefumlo, the Isango Ensemble’s contemporary adaptation of Puccini’s La Boheme, the low-budget horror The Actor from Aiden Whytock, and the politically inclined Bonnie-and-Clyde tale Impunity from Jyoti Mistry.There are also a variety of themes. Diff Beat will celebrate musicals, Just One Earth will present titles on environmental sustainability, and a selection of surf films will be shown in the Wavescape Surf Film Festival.There will also be seminars and workshops with notable industry figures.Economic benefitsThe film industry contributes R3.5-billion to the gross domestic product, says the Department of Trade and Industry.According to the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF), Leon Schuster’s Schuks Tshabalala’s Survival Guide to South Africa is the country’s highest grossing film, at R38-million.“South Africa’s potential growth on local productions has improved over the last few years. Local film production is benefitting from increased assistance from government, co-production treaties with various countries and ordinary success of the film,” says the NFVF.The film industry supports 25 175 full time jobs, says the foundation.Source: SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Resource Discovery: The National Fatherhood Initiative

first_imgThis post was written by Kimberly Quinn, University of Florida M.Ed./Ed.S. Candidate, 1LT Florida Army National Guard.  She is a member of the MFLN Family Development (FD) team which aims to support the development of professionals working with military families. [Flickr, Portfolio of Susanna Avery-Lynch by Susanna Avery-Lych, CC BY-ND 2.0] Retrieved on September 17, 2015In previous posts we’ve discussed the benefits of father involvement for both fathers and their children. This week’s featured resource is the National Fatherhood Initiative website which aims to equip fathers with education and resources needed to engage in their children’s’ lives. The  website includes information specific to military fathers making it a resource that professionals working with military families can use to equip families at any point in their military life cycle. In its aim to:“…improve well-being of children by increasing the proportion of children growing up with involved, responsible, and committed fathers…” The National Fatherhood Initiative website houses Quality Resources, Professional Technical Assistance, and Trainings and Workshops for military personnel as well as resources for professionals serving them. Topics in the training program range from becoming a new father to preparing for deployment with young children. In 2010, the National Fatherhood Initiative equipped over 40 National Guard sites with fatherhood resources. They have also distributed pamphlets and information kiosks to active installations across the country.last_img read more

The Cost of Pet Ownership in the Military

first_imgBy Carol ChurchThe unconditional love, companionship, acceptance, and emotional support our animal friends have to offer can be especially valuable to members of the military and their loved ones. Children missing an absent parent may find comfort in a beloved dog or cat. After moving to yet another new location, a pet makes a new area feel like home, and can even make it easier to make friends. And when one member of a couple is deployed, the spouse remaining at home may rely on the pet as companion, and even as protection.Aleksey Mnogosmyslov /PhotospinHowever, as pet owners know, owning a pet can also be expensive! According to Experian, the average annual cost of owning a cat or dog is about $600-700 a year. (The first year of ownership is significantly more expensive due to the cost of set-up.) Over its lifetime, a cat or dog could run you anywhere from about $6,000-$12,000, or possibly more.Of course, this figure is only a rough average. Depending on the size, health, and lifestyle of the pet, as well as a family’s lifestyle and choices, costs may be higher or lower. For instance, some families spend thousands on cancer treatment or ACL replacement for a failing canine or feline friend, while others will be hard pressed to afford a monthly medication. In 2011, the U.S. Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook reported that about half of dog owners and about 20% of cat owners do not take their pets to a vet at all in a given year. Of those, about 20-30% say this is because the cost is too high.What’s more, significant extra costs can also accrue to service members who own pets. Unfortunately, shelters near bases often report high rates of pet relinquishment. Though logistics are often the culprit here, finances can play a role as well, particularly when it comes to moving. Don’t forget about how pet ownership limits options when renting a home—many places will not rent to pet owners at all, or only with a sizable deposit, which may be lost if the pet does damage to the home or apartment.To be both financially responsible and a responsible pet owner, military families need to ask themselves these questions:Do we have a realistic sense of the cost of pet ownership? Can we afford this cost?Have we considered what we will do with this pet if we must PCS? What if the location is very distant or out of the continental US? What if we are flying but the pet cannot fly due to time of year (extreme temps can preclude flying?)Who will be the primary caretaker of this pet? If it is the service member, are other family members prepared to take his or her place in the event of deployment?Are we investing in pet insurance or setting aside funds for pet-related emergencies?How do we feel about the reality that pet ownership may limit our options when renting and buying?Do we know what we will and will not spend the money for when it comes to “heroic measures” for a pet in need?Special Considerations for Service membersPCSing may require shipping a pet by air and/or boarding one while trying to find a new housing. A special kennel is required, as is a certificate from a vet, and some destinations charge fees or require quarantine. Flying with a pet can be relatively reasonable (about $150-$200 for some destinations within the US) or significantly more costly (overseas flights may be several thousand dollars). Various specialized companies perform this service and some do offer military discounts.Depending on the situation, service members may also need to find somewhere to house their pet before their new home is ready to occupy. Pet boarding can easily run into the hundreds of dollars. Pet-friendly lodging may be a possibility, as many hotels near bases know that families need this service. Petswelcome offers an easy way to search for hotels open to animals.If a service member absolutely cannot afford the costs of PCSing with pets, there is help. Through Operation Military Pets, SPCA International offers financial assistance to families in need whose cost to ship their pets exceeds $400 domestic and more than $500 internationally. There are various regulations involved in this program.Active Deployment and PetsWhile not technically a financial issue in most cases, deployment can become a problem for pet owners without family to care for the pet in their absence. Fortunately, various nonprofits have sprung up to assist with this, offering pet “foster parents” who will care for a service member’s animal free of charge while he or she is deployed. Some reliable options include:Dogs on DeploymentGuardian Angels for Soldier’s PetPACT for Animals Military Foster ProgramIn the next installment, we’ll cover some simple ways that families with pets can save money on their care over the years.last_img read more

Interview: Behind the Scenes with Producer Bonnie Curtis

first_imgFrom Jurassic Park to Dietland, the films that producer Bonnie Curtis has worked on have yielded valuable lessons. We talk about what she’s learned.Cover image via AMC.Not every small-town Texas girl can go to Hollywood and make it big, but producer Bonnie Curtis shows us that with curiosity and tenacity, and by surrounding yourself with people you love, your odds can get a whole lot better.Bonnie Curtis.PremiumBeat: Everyone has a unique origin story, so I understand you can’t offer a step-by-step guide on how to be successful in Hollywood, but huge people in this industry such as Steven Spielberg, Kathleen Kennedy, and Glenn Close have put their trust and faith in you. Can you identify any qualities you have or actions you took that were valued and rewarded?Bonnie Curtis: I think a strong work ethic and personal confidence . . . and a bit of common sense . . . helped me immensely. Always doing something instead of waiting to be told to do it . . . not being afraid to be wrong. Most of the work “moments” in my life that I credit with being turning points for me were usually because of luck, a decision someone else made . . . and just being there in that moment, working hard. And attitude — that’s a biggie. Tackling the sublime to the ridiculous with a smile on one’s face.Jurassic Park (image via Universal Pictures).PB: You’ve been involved in huge studio productions (Schindler’s List, Minority Report, Jurassic Park) and intimate, independent films (Albert Nobbs, The Chumscrubber). How does the role of producer change when the scope of the production is different?BC: The role of the producer is a bit different on every project . . . but the basic elements remain the same whether the budget is large or small. Script, budget, schedule . . . casting . . . crewing. On a studio project, there is a political element that independent film more often does not experience. You have to spend quite a bit of your time communicating with the Studio about every element of your film on a studio production. And there is an approval process tied to that. Independent film is exactly that — independent of those approvals. With independent film, the stress comes from the financing. It is a challenge particularly in the world of Netflix, to get the equity to make an independent film.To The Bone (image via Netflix).PB: The films you worked on with Spielberg were of one sensibility, but the projects you’ve independently produced have had very different subject matter and tone. What do you currently look for in a project when you are considering signing on to produce? Is it the material, the attachments, the logistics, or a combination of elements?BC: Absolutely varies from project to project . . . but I do always like to find my way in. Sometimes it’s the director. Sometimes it’s the actor. Sometimes it’s the subject matter. And currently it’s the franchise — the opportunity to bring Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) back to the big screen in a franchise that was formative to me as a young filmgoer — that made this current Terminator film we are doing worthwhile. We also love the company that is co-financing the endeavor — Skydance Media. Passionate and very good people who love movies.PB: In life, we form relationships that feed our soul — I’ve noticed that your creative soul is also led by meaningful relationships. You’ve partnered with producer Julie Lynn, actor Glenn Close, and currently with Marti Noxon on the Netflix film To the Bone and AMC’s Dietland. How important is building a creative partnership, and why do you think you formed bonds with these particular artists?BC: I love artists. And I love artists who are trying to say something. I also love good people. And those three you have listed above are three of the most incredible human beings I have ever met. They have their feet on the ground. They love their children. They love art. They love walking around a city and discovering things. And they love me . . . that helps too!The Chumscrubber (image via Go Fish Pictures).PB: Arie Posen was a first-time feature director when you worked with him. From a producer’s perspective, what gave you the confidence to take a chance on him, and what did you see during the two films you produced of his in terms of a learning curve that other first-time directors should adopt? Any newbie mistakes that are common?BC: I loved Arie’s script, The Chumscrubber. And I loved his short film “Over My Dead Body.” Arie had something to say, and he knew how to move the camera. He is also a cinephile . . . he considers the art of making film an art. He loves seeing a perfect movie. And his work ethic is staggering. I love working with Arie. We have a TV show we are about to sell . . . can’t wait. As for mistakes — there are no mistakes. Making a film is messy . . . and you learn a lot in hindsight. But the the messy collaboration is what makes the art form incredibly unique. “Mistakes” can become the most beautiful part if you lean into them and don’t fight them.Dietland (image via AMC).PB: Dietland incorporates animation sequences, and clearly there is a colorful visual esthetic — how much influence as a producer do you have with the choices made by the director and/or DP?BC: I was deeply involved with Marti on the animation and visual effects aspect of Dietland. Simply because I have quite a bit of experience in this area. So I raised my hand. Marti’s brain is an absolute wonderland . . . and getting what she was seeing out of her head and onto the screen — that was our task. Our visual effects supervisor, Ivy Agregan, and the animation team at Six Point Harness made all our dreams come true. Once we got in a rhythm, it just rolled and rolled and rolled, and Marti got to play and play and play. I love the animation in the series.As for the looks outside of that animation . . . I left that to Marti and our amazing DP Alison Kelly. We all loved the footage at every turn . . . so there was no need to step in at any point.The Face of Love (image via IFC Films).PB: You filmed The Face of Love and To the Bone with the ARRI Alexa. Was that a filmmaker or producer choice, and how have these new cameras made the process easier both financially and artistically?BC: The Alexa was a game changer . . . but that seems like centuries ago now! Digital is all we’ve been shooting on for many, many movies. It would be fun to make one on film again. It makes zero difference to me . . . you just have to decide in enough time to plan properly. Budget properly. It’s all in the planning — the war is won in prep.Albert Nobbs (image via Lionsgate).PB: When a young filmmaker moves to L.A., they often are going to have to get a “day job” to pay the bills while they try to set up their own creative projects. What kind of job would you advise that would help them grow both creatively and professionally?BC: I always tell folks to just get their foot in the door somewhere. Take a temp job answering phones. My take on it is the real jobs in this business happen at a moment’s notice, and if you are on-site, you will more than likely get the gig. Do anything . . . get people’s lunch, pick up their laundry . . . and add your own flare to that endeavor . . . make it the best dang lunch they have ever had . . . make them remember you.Looking or more industry interviews? Check these out.Interview: Keeping Score with Film and Television Composer Nathan BarrInterview: The Film Collaborative on Filmmaking Rights and DistributionInterview: The Editor of “This is America” on Building the Iconic VideoSet Your Film Right: On Location with Robert FoulkesAn Interview with Andrew Shulkind, DP of Netflix Original film The Rituallast_img read more