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‘Fight for $15’ tells bosses to raise wages

first_imgAtlantaBoth big and militant, the day started with a rally on the Atlanta University campus with a wide variety of low-wage workers representing fast food, home health care, domestic, retail, airport workers and adjunct professors. Various unions, including the Teamsters and the Communication Workers, came with signs and banners, as did the NAACP, SCLC, DSA and others. The International Action Center had two banners.The crowd of about 600 took the streets, marching to a nearby McDonald’s where they rushed in, filling the place with chants. Militant protesters stood on tables, waving their signs. Hundreds surrounded the building, shutting it down for about half an hour before marching two blocks to Walmart. The crowd blocked the entrance, which management had already locked when they saw the demonstration coming. Security let customers out but no one in. The protesters chanted there for about 30 minutes. The police were there throughout, but didn’t take any action to stop the protest from taking the streets, swarming inside the McDonald’s or blocking the Walmart doors.—  Dianne MathiowetzMemphisThe wage protests started early around 6, with a group of about 20 people in front of one of the busier McDonald’s. The group remained small until it moved to the University of Memphis campus, where students and some professors quickly swelled the ranks to at least 100. A table was set up by the people who organized the day’s protests: the MidSouth Peace and Justice Center and the Show Me 15 members, who handed out T-shirts, stickers, signs and buttons. The crowd heard from local workers and university personnel brave enough to speak out. Between speakers there were chants of “Show me $15 and a union.”After an hour on campus, a larger group marched through the University Student Center, with chants of “Who shuts shit down? We shut shit down!” and calls echoing off the walls for fast food workers to come join us. The group then marched to another McDonald’s, where it spread out along the block, and we heard from more local workers. Many cars honked approval.Shortly before we were to depart for Ferguson, Mo., a charter bus from Little Rock arrived, swelling our numbers to around 250 to 300 people. The atmosphere was incredible; there was a tangible feeling of pride and optimism that we had beaten the apathy that often plagues many social and political movements in Memphis, if even only for a day. The police had been hands-off, allowing us to march where we wanted so long as we stayed on public property. A couple even spoke to a small group privately and voiced their support for our protest.The only trouble that we experienced was when we went to board the buses to Ferguson. The only white driver refused to transport part of the group when he realized we were protesters and made a claim that some had threatened him. A few in the crowd labeled that racism, but group leaders were quick to stop that by finding alternative transport. About 200 protesters —young and old, students, workers and professionals — crammed into two charter buses and several small vans in preparation for the five-hour drive.— Brent FordChicagoThousands of low-wage workers flooded the streets here demanding $15 and a union. Workers walked out of their workplaces all over the city protesting during the morning commute at a McDonald’s restaurant and then at a massive afternoon rally at the University of Illinois Chicago before protesters marched and gathered outside another McDonald’s restaurant in the Loop.“April 15 showed the world our growing strength as low-wage workers organizing to better our lives,” said Tommy Cavanaugh, a low-wage worker from Rockford, Ill., who traveled to the Chicago protests with two dozen of his fellow workers and supporters. “With each strike we gain more workers who understand that standing together is the only way we can live with dignity. The bosses have tried to stop us through ignoring us, intimidation and most recently attempting to buy us off with phony raises for a tiny section of workers. The unprecedented number of strikers and support from all sectors of the working class and oppressed showed without a doubt that the bosses’ tactics have failed to slow the rising tide of low-wage workers organizing and fighting back.” Cavanaugh is also an organizer with Rockford Fight Imperialism, Stand Together (FIST), which is helping to assist and organize low-wage workers. (facebook.com/RKFDFIST)MilwaukeeRaise Up MKE and Wisconsin Jobs Now, with major support from numerous labor-community organizations, held a series of actions. The day began with a 6 a.m. protest at a McDonald’s and then a rally took place at Red Arrow Park, the site where Dontre Hamilton, a 31-year-old African American man, was killed by Milwaukee police officer Christoper Manney  on April 30, 2014. Dontre’s brother, Nate Hamilton, spoke in solidarity with the Fight For $15 workers and supporters. A protest by Wisconsin Jobs Now was held at Grand Avenue Mall in downtown Milwaukee, and SEIU custodians and other members joined a march down Wisconsin Avenue, the major street in downtown Milwaukee. The day concluded with a rally of hundreds of low-wage workers and their supporters demanding $15 and a union at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. (facebook.com/RaiseUpMKE)Madison, Wis.Beginning with a march down East Washington Avenue, where workers at multiple fast food restaurants joined the growing march, protesters gathered at Library Mall at the University of Wisconsin Madison to demand $15 and a union. These actions were organized by Wisconsin Jobs Now, AFSCME, Industrial Workers of the World and the Workers’ Rights Center. At UW-Madison, the Fight For 15 members and supporters, which included teaching assistants and adjuncts, did outreach at Memorial Union. Like many campuses nationwide, UW Madison has a swamp of low-wage restaurants, campus offices and classrooms where students, staff, faculty and other community workers toil for below-poverty wages.Luke Gangler works with the UW Madison Student Labor Action Coalition, which protests against UW’s licensing agreement with Jansport, a Wisconsin company based in Appleton. Gangler urged worker unity with all those fighting for a living wage and protesting union busting and related austerity measures. The UW administration refuses to cut ties to Jansport’s parent company over working conditions in Bangladesh and says jobs are provided in the Appleton factory. “But the Appleton workers don’t make a living wage; their fight is the same fight as the Bangladeshi workers thousands of miles away,” said Gangler. (madison.com)Wausau, Wis.Numerous workers here briefly walked off their jobs to demand $15 and a union.— Workers World Milwaukee bureauBay Area, CaliforniaAll the McDonald’s in Oakland and a number of others across the Bay Area were shut down simultaneously at 8 a.m. as part of the national day for $15 and a union. The Oakland workers and community activists then converged on the McDonald’s on Telegraph Avenue and 45th Street, packing it and massing a huge overflow crowd in the parking lot outside. Later about 1,000 low-wage workers and community members from all over the Bay Area rallied at the University of California Berkeley campus, then marched to downtown Berkeley, shutting down yet another McDonald’s.— Terri KaySeattleSeattle’s new minimum wage law finally went into effect on April 1, and40,000 workers at big companies got raises to $11 an hour The new law will raise the wages of 100,000 low-wage workers. Companies employing 500 or more workers will have to pay the $15 an hour minimum by Jan. 1, 2017.While governmental groups like the city and the county boosted pay to $11, the rich University of Washington refused raises to student workers. After two militant protests by students and workers, UW caved and agreed to pay 2,600 student workers the $11an hourOn April 15, under the slogan “15 is just the beginning; inequality ends with us,” workers held marches and other actions in at least 12 Washington cities. With coordination from the Service Employees, Food & Commercial Workers, the Teamsters, and 15Now, 800 to 1,000 marched in Seattle. The demonstration of fast food and retail workers, child care and home care workers, drivers and adjunct professors, airport workers and more marched 2 miles through downtown.The march went to Uber headquarters, the alternative taxi business and a high-priced, high-profit, poverty-wage company. Uber’s immigrant workers are organizing a drivers’ association supported by the rest of the labor movement. The march also encircled Macy’s downtown store, where one-third of the workers got raises on April 1. But UFCW told the crowd that Macy’s workers’ hours have been cut and they’ve suffered other attacks.The march then went to Seattle University, where adjunct professors making poverty wages have been held back from gaining union recognition. The university, claiming a religious exemption, won’t allow a vote count for union recognition, which the teachers believe they will win.After hundreds of workers crowded into the SU business school for an occupation, the march then moved to a large nearby intersection. Twenty-one workers, representing many low-wage occupations, sat down and refused to leave until they were arrested by the cops. They symbolized the determination to resist until $15 and a better world is won for all workers.— Jim McMahan BaltimorePhoto: Bill HughesLow-wage workers in the tens of thousands, in 263 cities and towns, went on strike from coast to coast on April 15 for $15 an hour and union representation without retaliation. It signaled a growing escalation in the workers’ struggle in the U.S.Joined by protests in 40 countries on five continents — from San Paulo, Brazil, to Seoul; Amsterdam to Auckland, New Zealand; Toronto to Tokyo — April 15 represents an emerging global movement against low wages.Nothing like this upsurge of working-class protest has been seen in the U.S. since the national May Day demonstration in 2006, led by thousands of migrants from many nations.DetroitWW photo: Abayomi AzikiweOrganizers deliberately called the nationwide protest on April 15, Tax Day, to emphasize that taxpayers subsidize mega-billion-dollar imperialist giants like McDonald’s and Walmart that pay workers poverty wages. A study, released April 13 by the Labor Center at the University of California Berkeley, reports $153 billion for such public assistance as food stamps, Medicaid and housing subsidies is needed to sustain underpaid working families.A report by the National Employment Law Project, also released April 13, found nearly half the U.S. workforce (42 percent) makes less than $15 an hour. Women and people of color are disproportionately represented in the underpaid workforce, with over 50 percent of African-American workers and nearly 60 percent of Latino workers making less than $15.Three new layers broaden struggleNew YorkWW photo: Anne PrudenWorkers in the fast food industry started this struggle two and a half years ago. This time other sectors were also on board with walkouts, marches, rallies and die-ins, from Atlanta to Los Angeles. In addition to members of community and faith-based groups and unionized workers proudly showing solidarity, three new groups came out for the first time: workers in other low-wage jobs, activists in the Black Lives Matter movement and students.Legions of underpaid, unorganized home care and child care workers, car washers, adjunct and graduate student teachers, retail and dollar store clerks, unorganized construction laborers, airport service and laundry workers, and all kinds of part-time, temporary and contract workers joined the Fight for $15.For the first time, manufacturing workers joined the strike. Members of the United Electrical Workers Local 150 in Whitakers, N.C., who work at the Cummins Inc. Rocky Mount Engine Plant, held a press conference to announce their support for Fight for $15: “Thousands of manufacturing workers, including over 100 RMEP workers, are paid even less than the $10.10/hr minimum wage President Obama has advocated. We are also fighting against companies’ violating our union rights.” (UE press release)Voting spontaneously to walk off the job in Chicago were a group of about 50 unorganized drivers and security guards at Brink’s, the global security company. They’re fed up because the company recently reduced its contribution to their 401(k)s; now pays for only five hours of overtime, though they often put in 60- to 80-hour weeks; and new messengers and drivers make less than $15, while United Postal Service and FedEx workers make over $20 an hour. (In These Times, April 15)African-American youth linked the Black Lives Matter movement to the low-wage struggle. A banner headline on the Facebook page of Fast Food Forward proclaims: “Economic justice is racial justice.” Dramatic links were made when early-morning demonstrators in Brooklyn, N.Y., picketed a McDonald’s wearing T-shirts reading, “I can’t breathe, Fight for $15.” And a die-in was staged at noon in front of a McDonald’s on the Upper West Side of Manhattan for four minutes and 15 seconds — to symbolize the struggle.“We joined the Fight for $15 because, for us, racial justice is economic justice,” said Charlene A. Carruthers, national director of Black Youth 100. “We believe that Black workers have paid undeserved debts to greedy corporations for far too long.” Her nonprofit organization started the Black Work Matters campaign, also known as Fight for $15. (Common Dreams, April 15)After demonstrating in Memphis, more than 200 workers and students, joined by forces from Little Rock, Tenn., boarded chartered buses and several small vans for the five-hour drive to join the Fight for $15 action in Ferguson, Mo.College and university students came out in droves, driven by the burden of student loans and foreseeing a debt-ridden future. “It’s important for students to be involved,” said Robert Ascherman, a student activist from New York University, “because even if we aren’t working for McDonald’s or Walmart, we are still on McDonald’s or Walmart type of wages.” Even now, some students have to choose between buying food or buying textbooks.Mary Kay Henry, Service Employees international president, said that students on 170 campuses were expected to join the struggle. On a recent tour of six colleges, she “saw students everywhere on fire to fight for their future and link arms with these workers … to change this low-wage economy.”Even the Wall Street Journal, the ruling-class mouthpiece, ran an article April 15 stating that though $15 an hour for fast food workers “seems a real stretch” … [it] “may not be such a reach,” citing cities like Seattle and San Francisco where workers are now making $15 an hour and noting struggles in many cities and states to boost their minimum wage.The working-class genie that popped out of the capitalist bottle on April 15 — asserting the collective might of a determined working class — cannot be shoved back into that bottle.Fight for $15 RoundupMembers and friends of Workers World who participated in or observed the Fight for $15 and a union struggle on April 15 sent in reports from their cities. Excerpted or lightly edited versions appear here.Syracuse, N.Y.Over 100 people spilled into the street at a Fight for $15 sidewalk rally called by the Workers Center of Central New York and Service Employees 1199 Local 200United. “Strike poverty!” was the cry, as several low-wage women workers spoke of their struggles. One said of her part-time fast food job: “I work as hard as any factory worker.”Community and labor support was dramatic. Organized labor turned out, from many building trades locals — including roofers, insulators, plumbers—to members from transit, civil service, health care, teacher and writer unions. Present were local members of the United Auto Workers who had militantly refused New Process Gear’s offer to “save their jobs” — they gave thumbs down to a paycut to $16 an hour.Organizations in support included the Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars, Syracuse Peace Council, Spanish Action League, Green Party and local churches.— Minnie Bruce PrattPhiladelphiaOver 500 marchers demanding a $15 minimum wage and a union, some of them fast food store strikers, took over JFK Boulevard near the 30th Street Station as part of the largest U.S. low-wage worker protest in modern history.Adjuncts and students at Temple University and the University of Pennsylvania, airport, laundry, health care, nursing home and restaurant workers marched with a large contingent of purple-shirted Service Employee members and other union and social activists. The protesters stopped for a short rally in front of the Comcast Headquarters, a $130 billion company which pays very little in Philadelphia taxes, yet actively opposes sick leave for low-wage restaurant workers.Rallies also took place on North Philly’s Temple campus, on West Philly’s UPenn campus and in South Philadelphia before eventually joining this city’s largest low-wage protest to date.— Joseph PietteBaltimoreOver 100 people participated in a spirited rally and march to demand $15 an hour and a union. Protesters called for a livable wage and no police terror, racism and water shutoffs — referring to the city’s plan to shut off water to 25,000 Baltimore city and county residents. Community and Black Lives Matter activists came together with trade union members and low-wage workers.Courtney Jenkins, American Postal Workers Union member and the new head of the Young Trade Unionists, along with Sharon Black, of the People’s Power Assembly, chaired the event. Low- wage workers testified to the hardships they encountered on the job. Fred Mason, president of the Maryland and D.C. AFL-CIO, spoke along with APWU Local 181 President George Askew. University of Maryland, Baltimore County student Benji Shulman helped to lead songs, along with Dick Ochs and Andre Powell, who is an American Federation of State, County, Municipal Employees delegate to the Baltimore Metropolitan Council.The group marched to a nearby McDonald’s at Light and Baltimore streets. A heavy police presence guarded the McDonald’s entrance. After a second rally there, the group took to the streets and marched to the Main Post Office in solidarity with postal workers who had turned out in large numbers. The postal workers are fighting the privatization of postal services and the plan to turn union work over to low-wage, non-union Staples.The Baltimore action in support of low-wage workers was initiated by the People’s Power Assembly, its sister group “We Deserve Better” Workers Assembly and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Baltimore Chapter. The Baltimore Metropolitan Council of the AFL-CIO endorsed the action and sent information  to all their affiliates.Organizers noted that Baltimore is deeply impoverished, with one out of every four people living in poverty, with low wages a major reason. The number of unionized workers in Baltimore is low because the majority of work is in traditional low-wage jobs like fast food and retail. Many of the major industries like steel and auto have closed their plants.— Workers World Baltimore bureauRaleigh, N.C.Thousands gathered together from all across the state, many with the assistance of a fleet of buses carrying people from as far afield as Charlotte, on the campus of Shaw University, the birthplace of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee 55 years ago, to demand that all workers earn a living wage of $15  an hour for their labor. The crowd, excited in spite of the rain, beheld with rapt attention a diverse array of speakers, drawn from the ranks of students, adjunct faculty and fast food, home care, child care, public service and farm workers, all of whom articulated their need to be treated with dignity for their socially necessary labor. They also univocally condemned the conditions of poverty which their various employers have deemed fit to foist upon them.A keynote address was delivered afterwards by North Carolina NAACP President Rev. Dr. William Barber, in which he castigated material deprivation as itself being a form of violence, highlighted links between the struggles for economic and racial justice, and cited Dr. King’s proclamation on March 18, 1968, that unless the United States addresses the issue of poverty it will, like Dives for refusing to aid Lazarus, “Go to Hell.”The crowd then began a march, first crossing over a pair of footbridges, which shook under the weight of the multitude, spanning the three lanes of S. Blount Street, then striding through another block of Shaw’s campus before ultimately spilling out onto S. Wilmington Street. They then headed north toward, E. South Street, as they filled the air with chants such as “We can’t survive on $7.25.” As they walked around the block and passed under the bridges they had earlier crossed, a large segment of the crowd began to chant “Black Lives Matter,” recognizing in that slogan, not solely opposition to the heinous murders of Black people at the hands of the police, but also  affirmation that Black housing, Black health care, Black employment and Black wages matter.The procession continued around the block back to Wilmington Street, where it stopped near a sign commemorating the founding of SNCC in 1960. Underneath the sign more workers offered testimonials of their maltreatment by the rapacious capitalist class.— Patrick SnipesWhitakers, N.C.At a press conference here, United Electrical Workers Local 150 members at Cummins Inc. Rocky Mount Engine Plant announced that they are joining the international fight for a $15 minimum wage and union rights. The movement started with fast food workers; RMEP workers are the first known manufacturing workers in the country to join this movement. Today’s press conference was the only known activity in Eastern North Carolina that was part of this international day of action.Jimmie Thorne, chair of the DTZ workers branch of the UE150 Union, said, “We are here to support fast food and other service workers. Thousands of manufacturing workers, including over 100 workers RMEP workers, are paid even less than the $10.10/hr minimum wage President Obama has advocated. We are also fighting against companies’ violating our union rights.”Marilyn Williams, quality inspector and union member at RMEP contractor Tri-County Industries, makes only $7.50 per hour. “We can’t live on that. While contract workers are not direct employees of Cummins’ RMEP, RMEP must spend some of the billions in profit so that we can make a $15-an-hour minimum wage.”Rev. Vivian Lucas, of the National United Church of Christ, committed the ministry to “support a living wage for workers at the RMEP plant and all Eastern N.C. manufacturing workers [many of whom are African American].” Black Lives Matter in the workplace and community; workers, their families and communities are in a literal life-and-death situation.A unique aspect of this fight is that the union is holding RMEP accountable for the wages of all workers, including the contractors. RMEP contractors do housekeeping, maintenance, delivery, inspecting, packing, security and other jobs. DTZ, Tri County Industries, Manpower, Insource, Universal Protection Services and FDY are some of these contractors. Other workers joining the overall national fight movement are child care, home health care and adjunct/temporary university faculty.The Carolina Auto, Aerospace and Machine Workers Union is also calling for a $2 hour technician pay scale increase for Cummins workers at RMEP: Raise entry pay from $13.19 to $15.19, raise top pay from $20.91 to $22.91 and raise all levels of the 14-step pay scale by $2 an hour.Recently 500 workers from North Carolina and ten other southern states gathered at Dr. King’s Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta to build the movement for economic and racial justice and pledge to organize the South. They were joined by members of the 1968 Memphis sanitation workers’ strike who marched with Dr. King before he was assassinated.— UE150 press release FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

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The Waikato Times’ review of our Road Show

first_imgFamily First roadshow visits TaumarunuiStuff.co.nz 28 September 2016Family First Comment:  “It was held at the Baptist Church in Matapuna last Wednesday evening and a large crowd gathered inside the hall. McCoskrie made no apologies for his views that a nation’s negative social outcomes were a result of weakening families and marriages. Tackling issues from child abuse to family violence, he said he could link reasons for the breakdown in families. Using government research and statistics to back up his claim he also pointed out obvious solutions to fix the current social problems.”Family values advocate Bob McCoskrie stopped in Taumarunui as part of the Strong Marriage, Strong Families, Strong Nation roadshow.It was the only stopover in the Ruapehu District and the Family First advocate’s message was clear.“By the end of my presentation if there’s something you haven’t disagreed with then you’ve possibly nodded off halfway through.“I want to get under your skin.”It was held at the Baptist Church in Matapuna last Wednesday evening and a large crowd gathered inside the hall.McCoskrie made no apologies for his views that a nation’s negative social outcomes were a result of weakening families and marriages.Tackling issues from child abuse to family violence, he said he could link reasons for the breakdown in families.Using government research and statistics to back up his claim he also pointed out obvious solutions to fix the current social problems.“I will show what we need to do to strengthen families and what we need to do to actually solve the problems in family violence and child abuse but we’ve got to be willing to talk about some of the major presenting issues which I don’t think we are.”He said changes made on better enforcement of protection orders made last week and were important but more needed to be done.“I’m talking about the ambulance at the top of the cliff.” I’m asking how do we prevent it and stop the next generation of our underbelly of society going down the same track because it’s getting worse.”Drugs and alcohol were addressed as a major contributor.McCoskrie said going soft and liberalising laws would make matters worse.By pointing out the “elephants in the room” he had two hours to identify the core issues.Prepared for a controversial evening McCoskrie didn’t hold back telling the crowd he wanted to get people thinking.“Speak up and start speaking commonsense back into the debate.” We’re not willing to talk about what is quite obviously the major issues causing our social problems.”The lobby group also has another fight on their hands.After winning their charitable status against the Charities Commission he said  they may be back in court.“I think we all should be concerned when a government body or organisation of the day determines what is controversial or acceptable in  contemporary New Zealand society.”http://www.stuff.co.nz/waikato-times/news/ruapehu-press/84685839/family-first-roadshow-visits-taumarunuilast_img read more

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O’Shea confirms Kieran Bergin’s broken bone

first_imgO’Shea said the Killenaule man suffered a broken bone in his hand during a club game over the weekend and is believed to have undergone surgery on his finger today. Bergin went off injured against Offaly in the League quarter-final, but came on at half-time on Sunday for his side’s victory over Éire Óg Annacarty in the Senior Hurling Championship. The hand injury he sustained yesterday means he won’t be available for selection when the Premier County battle it out with Waterford this weekend in the semi-final of the National Hurling League in Nowlan Park.last_img read more

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Tokyo Olympics volunteers worry about pandemic impact

first_imgThe Tokyo metropolitan government on Thursday confirmed a fresh single-day record of 367 new cases of the novel coronavirus.Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike said that the Japanese capital is “facing a critical situation” and is “on the verge of an explosive increase of infections.”New daily infections in the capital of 14 million have topped the 200-mark on nine of the past 10 days, with the cumulative total on Wednesday reaching 12,228 infections, of which around 50 percent were confirmed in this month alone.Koike said Wednesday that containing the spread of the new coronavirus in the Japanese capital is the very first step toward the successful hosting of the postponed Olympics and Paralympics next summer.She also said the Tokyo metropolitan government is holding talks with the International Olympic Committee, the games organizers and the Japanese government to realize the targeted simplification of the games’ operation.XinhuaShare on: WhatsApp Tokyo, Japan | XINHUA |  More than 60 percent of the volunteers for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics are “worried or anxious” about the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the Games, a survey has found.Japanese state broadcaster NHK said on Friday that Tokyo 2020 organizers conducted the survey this month of volunteers who will be working mainly at event sites.About 26,000 out of the 80,000 people who have signed up responded to the survey which allowed multiple answers for each question.Asked what their main causes of worry or anxiety about the Games were, 66.8 percent said they were how the pandemic will affect the format of the event and how infection preventive measures will be carried out during the Games, NHK said.Thirty-four percent also said that they did not have much opportunity to know about their work because their training had been postponed.Some commented that they were worried about the risk of infection when they work as volunteers. Others mentioned uncertainty over whether the Games will actually be held.On Thursday, the organizing committee began asking volunteers if they still want to work at the games, which have been rescheduled for July 23 to August 8, 2021.last_img read more

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Masterworks Choral Ensemble To Perform “Deo Gloria!”

first_imgFacebook31Tweet0Pin0 Submitted by Masterworks Choral EnsembleThe title of Masterworks Choral Ensemble’s April 20th concert is “Deo Gloria!” This translates as “Glory to God.” Both of the featured composers in this concert, Bach and Vivaldi, spent their lives expressing their faith through their music. Bach even wrote “Soli Deo Gloria” (Glory to God alone) on all his compositions. The concert features two masterpieces from choral literature: Bach’s “Magnificat” and Vivaldi’s “Gloria.” The program begins at 7:30pm and is preceded by a concert chat at 7pm.The “Magnificat” is based on Luke I: 46-55 and is a song celebrating the Virgin Mary. It was originally written in 1723 for Christmas Vespers. Some years later Bach revised it and now the piece is suitable through the year. The beauty of the “Magnificat, and all of Bach’s music is his remarkable ability to balance, yet at the same time to exploit to the fullest, the spiritual and dramatic elements of each text.Vivaldi’s “Gloria” is one long meditation of praise to God. The text comes from the “Gloria” portion of the Latin Mass. This work is characterized by its light, bouncy almost dance-like feel and its movement “Domine Fili Unigenite” is one of the most popular of all choral movements from this period. In addition to the larger choral ensemble, the smaller group, “The Masterworks Singers” will perform a parody piece by the fictitious composer, P.D.Q. Bach called, “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love.”Also included in this concert are two special events: Masterworks presentation of its annual Salute to the Arts award and a performance by youth guest artist, Caddie Derby, on the violin. Diane Gaile, founder and owner of Mariah Collaborative Arts Center, is MCE’s 2013 Salute honoree for her significant contributions to the arts in our region. Caddie Derby won the middle school division in last year’s Youth Music Competition.Masterworks received a generous grant from Olympia Federal Savings and Loan that made this event possible. Tickets are available at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts at their box office and online at www.olytix.org.last_img read more

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San Jose Golden State Warriors: The untold story of what almost happened

first_imgCLICK HERE if you are having trouble viewing the photo gallery on your mobile device.OAKLAND — Tuesday marks the start of the Golden State Warriors final season at Oracle Arena. Then, off they go to San Francisco. Of all the history etched in Oakland during the team’s 46-year run here, one piece remained largely buried, until now:How close the Warriors came in 1995 to moving to San Jose.Close enough to schedule a press conference — cancelled with just hours to spare — to announce the news. …last_img read more

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Africa’s hotel room numbers surge

first_img13 April 2016The number of planned hotel rooms in Africa has soared to 64 000 in 365 hotels, up almost 30% on the previous year, according to figures from the annual W Hospitality Group Hotel Chain Development Pipeline Survey, published on 11 April.The number of planned hotel rooms in Africa has soared to 64 000 in 365 hotels, up almost 30% on the previous year, according to survey.— Fin24 (@Fin24) April 12, 2016The increase was largely the result of strong growth in sub-Saharan Africa, which was up 42.1% on 2015 and was significantly outstripping North Africa, which achieved only a modest 7.5% pipeline increase this year, the survey found.In a major shake-up in the rankings by country, Angola, never before listed in the top 10, pushed Egypt out of second place, as a result of a major deal there signed by AccorHotels.The W Hospitality Group survey is published ahead of the African Hotel Investment Forum (AHIF). The conference attracts all the major international hotel investors in Africa and is being held for the first time in Lome, in Togo on 21 and 22 June. A second AHIF will take place in Kigali, in Rwanda from 4 to 6 October.“The evidence from our survey is clear – investors remain confident about the future of the hospitality industry on the continent,” said Trevor Ward, W Hospitality Group managing director. “Even when pummelled daily by low commodity prices, exchange rate problems, political challenges and poor infrastructure, Africa remains resilient.”The International Monetary Fund forecast for economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa is for an increase of 4% this year and 4.7% in 2017, up from 3.5% in 2015, according to a press release from conference organisers Bench Events. “Overall this is down on the 5% to 6% increase enjoyed over the past decade, but it’s still double or more the forecast for the world’s advanced economies, such as Europe, the USA and Japan.”“Africa is still on the up. For business, trade and capital investment, the continent remains an attractive proposition, leading to continuing demand for accommodation and other hospitality services,” said Matthew Weihs, managing director of Bench Events.Detailed analysisThis is the eighth annual pipeline survey, which looks at hotel industry growth in Africa, particularly international chains signing new deals. The 2016 survey provides a full picture of hotel development across the continent – 36 hotel chains and 86 brands with more than 64 000 rooms in 365 hotels.The inaugural survey was completed in 2009. In that year, there were 19 international and regional hotel chains contributing, with a pipeline of 144 hotels and just under 30 000 rooms.Angola dominated the 2016 report. In July 2015, AccorHotels signed with AAA Activos LDA for the management of 50 hotels with about 6 200 rooms. All were under construction and many were ready to open, according to the survey.Across the continent, the north-south divide on hotel development continued. In 2011, the number of pipeline rooms in the five countries of North Africa was about 25% higher than that in sub-Saharan Africa. Today, it was less than half.“There are two reasons why development activity in North Africa is now somewhat subdued,” Ward explained. “Firstly, the markets there are more mature and have already seen much development, so there are fewer opportunities for new hotels. Secondly, there is the political turmoil – in Libya, which has seen a 40% drop in the pipeline, and also Egypt, parts of which are experiencing drastic reductions in the number of tourists.”Nigeria remained the country with the most rooms in the pipeline, up 20% on 2015. Together with Angola, the two countries accounted for 17 782 rooms, almost 30% of the total pipeline and 40% of the signed rooms in sub-Saharan Africa. South Africa came in ninth, with 2 058 rooms and 11 hotels in the pipeline.Source: Africa- Newsroom.comlast_img read more

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Energy Predictions vs. Energy Performance

first_imgPV estimates are closeAs for the actual solar PV generation (8,189 kWh), it pretty well split the difference between the installer’s predicted 9,300 kWh/year and the PHPP prediction of 7,321 kWh/year. I think this past year was on the cloudier side for sure. We had a lot of rain in the spring and even more in the fall, which is very unusual. Followed by an extremely early snowfall, which seriously cut into our PV generation (see October – brutal). It probably would be closer to the installer’s prediction on a typical year. (We’ll have to see what 2017 brings.)Still, based on the actual numbers, our solar panels did cover nearly 45% of our overall energy use for 2016. We would, however, need to double the number of our solar panels (add another 6.2-kW array) to meet net zero consistently. Who knows, maybe in the coming years the costs will drop more and perhaps government incentives will increase. One can hope.Comparing our house to the average Saskatchewan home consumption of 30,555 kWh, we did very well. We used 37% less energy then the average home. And when you take into account the solar energy generated, that drops us further, to 65% less energy then the average house! Sweetness.Considering that we are completely on electric energy, it makes sense to make the house as energy-efficient as possible. The cost of electricity for us is $0.12224/kWh (while the cost of natural gas power is about $0.04/kWh equivalent), which works out to an electricity bill of $1,321.54/year (10,811 kWh x 0.12224).We do, however, have to pay a basic service fee of $32.61/month (even when we are net positive in a month), which sucks, and then 5% tax. That brings our absolute costs for the year to $1,798.50/year or $149.88/month, which is about half the cost of our previous homes power and electricity bill.I’m OK with that. Actual energy consumption and PV generationJanuary: Solar generated = 315 kWh vs. energy use = 3,323 kWh.Yikes! I was a pretty worried when I saw this. That being said, January was very cold and has very short, dark days (-20° to -30°Celsius most days, or -4° to -22° F. We kept the house around 71°F).February: Solar generated = 553 kWh vs. energy use = 2,706 kWh.February is always a cold month. Although you can see the solar was getting a bit more sunlight already as the days lengthened.March: Solar generated = 603 kWh vs. energy use = 1,716 kWh.This was getting a bit better still. I lowered the house temperature to 69°F. It was getting warmer outside and we were getting more solar gain.April: Solar generated = 979 kWh vs. energy use = 1,385 kWh.April was warm and sunny. Nice spring weather. Started to not need the in-floor heat on at all during the day, but still ran it during the night.May: Solar generated = 960 kWh vs. energy use = 1,029 kWh.Almost net zero for the month. It was a very nice month. We were running our river pump frequently to water new grass, which I think increased energy use quite a lot.June: Solar generated = 1,434 kWh vs. energy use = 989 kWh.Net positive in a big way. Beautiful month. Obviously the longest days of the year.July: Solar generated = 956 kWh vs. energy use = 511 kWh.The first two weeks of July were cloudy and rainy which is unusual for July.August: Solar generated = 950 kWh vs. energy use = 645 kWh.This month was very rainy as well, which again, is not normal. August is usually very hot.September: Solar generated = 778 kWh vs. energy use = 611 kWh.Cool and cloudy. I replanted grass seed and was running the river pump a lot again.October: Solar generated = 315 kWh vs. energy use = 1,478 kWh.October sucked! 315 kWh is the same as January! It snowed on October 4. We had to turn the heat back on. There were only two or three sunny days all month.November: Solar generated = 390 kWh vs. energy use = 1,750 kWhCloudy month, but we had some mild days mid-month with above-freezing temperatures. Still, we generated more solar in November than we did in October, which should not happen.December: Solar generated = 229 kWh vs. energy use = 2,857 kWhShortest days of the year and extremely cold (-40°F). What do you expect?Actual totals:Actual solar PV generated = 8,189 kWh.Actual household energy consumed = 19,000 kWh.Actual total net energy used (consumption – PV) = 10,811 kWh. Energy use was less than expectedI’m extremely pleased with these numbers! I’ve been waiting for two and a half years to know what our actual energy use would be.The annual output of the 6.2 kW solar array at the Canadian superinsulated home of Kent and Darcie Earle was close to predictions and, overall, supplied about 45% of total energy use.We actually used less overall energy then was predicted by either the HOT2000 (19,328 kWh/year, although it was close) and a lot less than was predicted by PHPP (22,868 kWh/year), which is surprising. It makes me wonder how close we would be to meeting the Passive House standard given that our actual energy use is 3,868 kWh less than it predicted… Hmm. Maybe we should have tried to hit that airtightness target of 0.6 ach50 after all. Oh well.Nonetheless, the overall energy use of 19,000 kWh is very good (and such a nice round number, too!). We did not do anything different in terms of our behavior, except to just be smart and not be wasteful. I still baked bread every weekend and we used our larger appliances just like we normally would. We have two refrigerators and two deep freezers in the house. All the lights are LEDs. We try to hang our clothes to dry. We used our wood stove occasionally, maybe two or three times per week, but mostly just for ambiance and occasionally on the extremely cold days.That being said, based on the predicted numbers, the heating energy likely accounts for about 50% of our overall energy use. That makes me wonder, too, how much better we could do if we burned wood a bit more often? We had spent a lot of time planning and designing a house that would be energy-efficient, aesthetically pleasing, and cost-effective. This is a fine balance to try to find. However, it really is a big guessing game until you actually live in the space and track its performance. You can run all of the computer programs you want, but you really don’t know how things will be until you’ve moved in and you’re living your normal life.We had installed PV panels on the house to compensate for some of our energy use, with the hope that someday we could work towards a net-zero energy home. But this, too, seemed to be a big guess as to how well it would perform. In the planning and designing stages of the house we ran a couple different energy models on the house. The first is called the HOT2000 program. This is an energy simulation and design tool for low-rise residential buildings. The software is widely used across Canada to support program, policy, and regulatory development and implementation. HOT2000 is developed and managed by the Office of Energy Efficiency at Natural Resources Canada (NRCAN). It was originally designed for use with the R2000 energy efficiency program, which was an early promoter of green home building in Canada.We later used the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP), which is now a widely used software program for building highly efficient homes worldwide.My intent with this article is to report the varying predictions of the these two programs, as well as our predicted solar generation, and also to show our actual energy use for the year of 2016 – our first full year in the new house. I’ll also report some considerations and possible options for the future. Editor’s note: Kent Earle and his wife, Darcie, documented construction of their superinsulated house on the Canadian prairies in a blog called Blue Heron EcoHaus. GBA published a number of those posts in a series that wrapped up last year. Recently, Kent wrote to say he has been monitoring energy use at the house and offered this followup.center_img RELATED ARTICLES Pre-build energy modelingI had been very curious about this when we were in the early stages of planning the house. Most of what I read concerned predicted energy use in various homes, but I’d only come across one house that actually tracked and reported its energy use — the Mill Creek Net Zero House in Edmonton, Alberta. Although it used exceptionally little energy, it did not meet its net-zero target. That being said, it was very close.I fully did not expect our home to be anywhere close to net zero, but we hoped that over the next number of years we could gradually build our solar panel array (as costs come down) to eventually reach our goal.OK, let’s get to the numbers:HOT2000 Predictions:Annual space heating energy consumption: 7,159 kilowatt-hours (kWh).Annual domestic hot water (DHW) energy consumption: 3,409 kWh.Annual appliance energy consumption: 8,760 kWh.TOTAL = 19,328 kWh/year.PHPP Predictions:Annual space heating energy consumption: 7,584 kWh.Annual DHW energy consumption: 3,974 kWh.Annual appliance energy consumption: 11,310 kWh.TOTAL = 22,868 kWh/year.PV Array Predictions (6.2 kW)PHPP estimation: 7,321 kWh/year.Solar installer’s estimation: 9,300 kWh/year.So obviously there are discrepancies between the HOT2000 and the PHPP. Although their predictions of heating and DHW are quite close, surprisingly the appliance use was significantly different. Also, surprising, was the discrepancy in the solar predictions – I was a bit disconcerted by the drastic difference of 2,000 kWh/year!For comparison’s sake, according to Stats Canada website’s most recent 2011 home energy use data, a Saskatchewan home consumes an average of 30,555 kWh/year (110 GJ), of which electricity for appliance use is 8,889 kWh/year (32 GJ). Energy Modeling Isn’t Very AccurateEnergy Modeling SoftwareIs Modeling a Four-Letter Word?Energy Modeling Has a Very Fast Payback Drum roll, pleaseActually, first some clarifications. All I have is our actual overall energy use. I cannot separate out heating vs. DHW vs. appliances, unfortunately, although this would be interesting. The following information is taken from the solar panel’s generation and the electrical meter. I tracked each month and have recorded it below.OK, now the drum roll.last_img read more

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Love Jones Concert set for Shore Club

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, TCI, February 10, 2017 – Grand Turk native, Crystal TESS Charles is preparing for a big night on Tuesday, her Love Jones concert is set for Valentine’s Day and in a media release, the blossoming songstress says she will be performing covers from artists like Luther Vandross, Anita Baker, Patti Labelle and Jill Scott.  Hers will be the first show at Providenciales’ newest resort, the Shore Club in Long Bay, and tickets are available there, at Five Star Concierge and at Island Printing.Love Jones by Tess Charles also features: Raj the Entertainer, Dexter Landy, Phillippa Mayhem, Carl “Choice” Lewis, Hudson Vixamar and Dean Sparks.   The show gets started at 9pm on Valentine’s Day.#MagneticMediaNews #LoveJonesConcert Related Items:#LoveJonesConcert, #magneticmedianews Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

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