Four human rights and equality watchdogs have been

first_imgFour human rights and equality watchdogs have been snubbed by the minister for disabled people after raising serious concerns about how her government dismissed a report that found it guilty of “grave or systematic” violations of the UN disability convention.The UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD) said last month that the UK government had discriminated against disabled people across three key parts of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).But the government responded to the report by dismissing its conclusions and all 11 of its recommendations.Now the UK’s official independent mechanism (UKIM) for monitoring implementation of the convention – the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland and the Scottish Human Rights Commission – has called on the UK government to “urgently reconsider” its response to the UN report.It has written to Penny Mordaunt (pictured), the minister for disabled people, to express its concerns about both the findings of the report, and the government’s response.But a DWP spokeswoman refused even to acknowledge the letter, after being asked for a comment by Disability News Service.Instead, the spokeswoman said that “everything the government has to say about the UN inquiry is contained in its comprehensive official response [to the CRPD report]”.In its analysis of the government’s response to the inquiry, UKIM says it has failed to show that it is giving “due regard to the need to promote the equality of disabled people or their broader human rights, when developing new law and policy”.It says in the letter: “We welcome the publication of the inquiry report, and we are concerned by its conclusion that the UK Government’s programme of social security reform since 2010 has resulted in grave or systematic violations of disabled people’s human rights.“Of even greater concern is the UK Government’s response, which suggests that it will not be taking action on any of the recommendations.”The letter calls on the government to reconsider its position in the light of the “continuing impact on disabled people’s lives”.The four commissions defend the way that CRPD researched the report, which they say was “robust and comprehensive” and “based on a rigorous review of the available evidence”.UKIM itself contributed “detailed evidence” to the committee for its report.This contrasts with comments made by work and pensions secretary Damian Green, who last month described the report as “patronising and offensive”.UKIM points out that “similar concerns” to those outlined by CRPD have been raised in previous reports by the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and in a letter from the UN special rapporteurs on housing, disabilities, poverty and food.It calls on the government to “enhance the status” of the convention in UK law, and introduce a way to scrutinise policy and legislation to ensure it complies with UNCRPD.And it calls on the government – like many other organisations before, including grassroots organisations of disabled people such as the WOWcampaign and Pat’s Petition, and EHRC itself – to “urgently” carry out a “human rights-based” assessment of the cumulative impact on disabled people of all of the social security reforms brought in since the coalition took power in 2010.The four commissions also call on the UK government to take “urgent steps” to provide “sufficient independent living funding to each [local authority] to meet the needs of disabled people in their area”, following the closure of the Independent Living Fund.And they say the government should provide councils with guidance on how to fulfil their duties to meet the convention’s independent living duties, and ensure that every local authority can report on independent living funding in its own areas.The commissions also urge the UK government to commission independent research on the impact of its legal aid reforms on disabled people, and “take concrete steps to mitigate any adverse impacts identified”.Linda Burnip, co-founder of Disabled People Against Cuts, the grassroots network of disabled people that persuaded the UN to carry out its inquiry, welcomed the UKIM intervention.But she said: “DPAC tried working with EHRC in 2011 in an attempt to get them to challenge the government’s actions, which were eroding the rights of disabled people so badly.“Therefore we’re very pleased to see some action at last, even if it is five years too late.”Meanwhile, a new report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) has found that – once account is taken of the higher costs faced by disabled people – half of people living in poverty are either disabled or are living with a disabled person in their household.The report says that there are 4.2 million disabled people in poverty, and 7.1 million people in poverty who are either disabled themselves or live in a household with a disabled person.Disability Rights UK said the JRF report was “a damning indictment of government policy towards disabled people”.last_img read more

A disability charity has refused to apologise for

first_imgA disability charity has refused to apologise for holding a fundraising comedy night in an inaccessible London venue.Action onHearing Loss (formerly known as RNID) was raising money as part of its DeafAwareness Week with an evening of stand-up at The Comedy Store in London.Performers included Angela Barnes, Samantha Baines, Ed Gamble, Eshaan Akbar, Russell Howard (all pictured, left to right) and John Bishop, three of whom have hearing loss themselves.But thevenue chosen by the charity is not accessible to many disabled people, with TheComedy Store warning on its website that it only has a “chair lift”which “cannot bear the weight of a person in a wheelchair”.This meansthat any wheelchair-user “must be able to leave their wheelchair, descend viathe chairlift, then retake their wheelchair once at the bottom of the stairs”,so “large electric wheelchairs are unable to gain access” to the auditorium.Alan Benson,a disabled campaigner and activist from London, said: “Funding is a challengefor everyone so events like this are very important, but it’s vital that we getthem right. “In asociety that routinely discriminates against disabled people we must make surethat we support each other and run fully inclusive events. “I know thatthose with hearing impairments routinely face barriers to participation so Iwould have hoped for better.”Benson, whouses an electric wheelchair himself, added: “London has many great accessiblevenues so there is no excuse not to use them. “By usingvenues like The Comedy Store, we validate their inadequate provision. “To justifythe event by saying it was accessible to some disabled people is simply notgood enough.”Whenquestioned about the inaccessible venue, Action on Hearing Loss (AHL) refusedto apologise or say why the event was held in a venue which was not accessiblefor many wheelchair-users. It alsorefused to say what kind of message that decision sent to wheelchair-users withhigh support needs, and whether it suggested that raising money and “awareness”of AHL’s work was more important than including people who use electricwheelchairs.But aspokesperson said in a statement: “At the launch of Deaf Awareness Week, it wasimportant that the charity gave people with deafness and hearing loss theopportunity to attend an iconic comedy venue that has played host to some ofthe most famous performers in the world. “To achievethis, the show was supported by BSL interpreters, live subtitling and a hearingloop. “But it wasnot just those with deafness and hearing loss who came to the show, people withvarious disabilities were also in attendance, including those usingwheelchairs. “We arecommitted to breaking down the barriers that prevent inclusivity for all and wewill continue to work with venues to help improve their accessibility.”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

The best possible price to renew your Membership w

first_imgThe best possible price to renew your Membership will remain open until Wednesday October 31.Lachlan Coote, Kevin Naiqama, Joseph Paulo and Joe Batchelor will be Saints in 2019 … will you?The quartet will join up with our established core of experienced players and young guns, alongside those who are looking to build on strong performances through 2018, next season.The likes of Matty Lees and Jack Ashworth have come to the fore this year and will look to kick on in 2019.Then you have six 2018 Dream Team members – Jonny Lomax, Tommy Makinson, Mark Percival, James Roby, Danny Richardson and Luke Thompson – who all came through the Saints Academy system.We’re Saints and Proud and we want you to continue the journey with us.We have again expanded your exclusive benefits and it will cover 14 home games in 2019.You can also make your Membership a simple monthly payment with our very popular Direct Debit plan. Each season lots of fans take advantage of this to pay for their Membership over ten months to spread the cost.Alternatively, you can also take up an eight or six month package later on in the off-season.For example a West Stand renewal for an adult would equate to just £25.06 per month.And an ‘adult and child’ in the Family Stand would be just £27.49 per month.Your Membership covers all Saints’ Betfred Super League home games and to discover Benefits, Prices and more here www.saintsrlfc.com/membershipsWe are Saints and Proud.#saintsandproud,The best possible price to renew your Membership will remain open until Wednesday October 31.Lachlan Coote, Kevin Naiqama, Joseph Paulo and Joe Batchelor will be Saints in 2019 … will you?The quartet will join up with our established core of experienced players and young guns, alongside those who are looking to build on strong performances through 2018, next season.The likes of Matty Lees and Jack Ashworth have come to the fore this year and will look to kick on in 2019.Then you have six 2018 Dream Team members – Jonny Lomax, Tommy Makinson, Mark Percival, James Roby, Danny Richardson and Luke Thompson – who all came through the Saints Academy system.We’re Saints and Proud and we want you to continue the journey with us.,We have again expanded your exclusive benefits and it will cover 14 home games in 2019.You can also make your Membership a simple monthly payment with our very popular Direct Debit plan. Each season lots of fans take advantage of this to pay for their Membership over ten months to spread the cost.Alternatively, you can also take up an eight or six month package later on in the off-season.For example a West Stand renewal for an adult would equate to just £25.06 per month.And an ‘adult and child’ in the Family Stand would be just £27.49 per month.Your Membership covers all Saints’ Betfred Super League home games and to discover Benefits, Prices and more here www.saintsrlfc.com/membershipsWe are Saints and Proud.#saintsandproudlast_img read more

Wilmington man accused of sharing sexually explicit photos

first_imgBRUNSWICK COUNTY,  NC (WWAY) — A Wilmington man is in the Brunswick County Detention Center accused of sharing private photos of someone without their consent.Francis Christopher Zober, 33, faces multiple counts of disclosure of private images.- Advertisement – According to arrest warrants, Zober shared the images with ‘the intent to harass, demean and humiliate’ the victim. Warrants state the victim’s intimate parts were exposed. In some of the images, the victim was engaged in sexual conduct.The alleged crime happened September 20.Zober was booked early Tuesday morning and placed under a $100,000 bond.last_img

Frozen valve leads to Boil Water Advisory for Brunswick Forest in Leland

first_img Vigorous boiling for one minute should kill any disease-causing organisms that may be present in the water.Boiling water concentrates any levels of nitrates that may be present in the water. Infants below the age of six months and pregnant women should use an alternate water supply whenever possible.This advisory remains in effect until further written notification is issued.We are aware of a water service outage in the Brunswick Forest community. Crews are working to determine the cause and solution. We do not have more information at this time, but will provide updates here when we do. Thank you for your patience.— Town of Leland (@Townofleland) January 2, 2018Related Article: Chef offers recipes for your Super Bowl partyUPDATE: The cause of the issue was a frozen valve, which our crews have addressed. Residents of Brunswick Forest are instructed to boil water until further notice. Thank you.— Town of Leland (@Townofleland) January 2, 2018 LELAND, NC (WWAY) — Water consumers in the Brunswick Forest in Leland experienced periods of low water pressure and outages around 9:00 am Tuesday.Periods of low or no pressure in the water distribution system increases the potential of bacteria, therefore the Town of Leland advises that water consumers in the Brunswick Forest neighborhood boil all water used for human consumption, including drinking, making ice, brushing teeth, washing dishes and food preparation, or use bottled water.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Alleged victim declines pursuing charges in UNCW soccer coach investigation

first_img The sheriff’s office confirms this is the only investigation they have conducted involving Coach Cairney. A spokeswoman with the Wilmington Police Department also confirmed they do not have any prior investigations involving Cairney.UNCW placed Cairney on administrative leave on December 8 to conduct a personnel inquiry. UNCW will not confirm whether this relates to allegations of sexual misconduct.Many students are still concerned and confused.Related Article: ONLY ON WWAY: Addison Spruill calls arrest ‘learning experience’“It definitely scares me but it’s nice that they’re looking into it now.But I just wish that this could’ve happened, like not looking into it until 2007 when it happened in 1994,” student Molly Crum, said.Anonymous tweets from last summer and again in November and December, accuse Cairney of sexual misconduct at a UNCW Soccer Camp more than two decades ago.Many students on campus believe the “#MeToo” movement contributed to this and say now is the best time to deal with it.“For an issue like this to be prevalent and dealt with accurately and adequately, I think it’s today as much as any time,” said student Ben Young. “But I also think it’s important that UNCW’s faculty and staff to heavily hard press this issue and make sure if there is any sexual misconduct, that’s it’s dealt with appropriately.”“I think now it’s re-surfacing because there’s been so many movements against this type of misconduct. People are trying to stop it and they probably remember this and brought it back up to try to make sure it wasn’t being covered up,” student Jillian Klosek, said.According to the UNCW website, Cairney has been with the soccer team since 1994. He became the head coach in 1996.We reached out to UNCW and asked if they had received any other allegations into Coach Cairney or any other complaints from students. We also wanted to know if we could speak with someone to explain the procedures for summer camps.We are still waiting on a response.WWAY reached out to Coach Cairney’s attorney, Bruce Mason, who responded to the allegations Wednesday night saying in part:“The allegation against Coach Paul Cairney is false. The accusation alleges an incident occurring in 1994. This claim was fully and thoroughly investigated by the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Department in 2007. Paul cooperated in that investigation.”We reached back out to Mason about the latest developments and he responded Thursday evening with the following statement:“The recent statement made on behalf of the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Department indicates a positive step in this matter,” Mason said. “UNCW is still obliged to conduct a complete and independent administrative inquiry into this claim. Coach Cairney has trust in the process and a great deal of respect for the team appointed by UNCW to conduct the investigation. Paul looks forward to continuing his cooperation in the process. There has been an overwhelming number of requests by the media to interview Paul or his attorney. Coach Cairney believes that any media interviews will only serve to harm the integrity of the inquiry. Although appreciated, all requests for interviews by the media will be declined. Paul firmly believes this course of action is in the best interests of the UNCW family, the public-at-large, and his family.” WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office confirms they investigated UNCW women’s soccer coach Paul Cairney for indecent liberties with a minor back in 2007, but at the time, the victim in the case did not want to pursue prosecution.Sheriff’s Office Spokesman Lt. Jerry Brewer says due to recent social media posts, the sheriff’s office and UNCW Police reached out to the victim, who again declined a further criminal investigation.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Ag Chief Steve Troxler makes 300Mplus request on Florence aid

first_imgA hemp farmer in Bladen County lost everything after Hurricane Florence destroyed his crops. (Photo: Kylie Jones/WWAY) RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina’s agriculture agency asked state legislators Monday for over $300 million to address cleanup and recovery after Hurricane Florence, with most going toward direct payments to farmers who lost crops and livestock to help them stay in business.Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler made the impassioned pitch to a General Assembly committee a week before the legislature reconvenes to take its second step in addressing last month’s massive rains and historic flooding.- Advertisement – “This is an unprecedented crisis for North Carolina agriculture. Florence was an unprecedented storm that could not have come at a worse time for agriculture,” Troxler told the agriculture oversight panel. Some key legislators, however, wanted more information before endorsing the payment program.Troxler said without substantial state assistance, some agriculture communities won’t survive.“We’re at a crossroads and a crisis in agriculture and it’s going to be your leadership that determines whether we lose a whole generation of farmers or whether we help this foundational industry move forward and out of this crisis,” Troxler told lawmakers.Related Article: Evacuation order continues in Kelly as water keeps risingLawmakers set aside $50 million to match federal disaster relief funds during a special session last week. Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper is expected to have his own list of monetary and policy needs for next week.Troxler, who is also elected statewide, said $250 million of his $310 million request would go into a yet-developed Farmer Recovery Reinvestment Program. It would pay farmers with uninsured and underinsured crop, livestock and poultry losses to help them remain in agriculture.Preliminary crop and livestock damage is at least $1.1 billion, with the economic impact at $2.8 billion, Troxler said.He said farming took a deeper blow from Florence than what Hurricane Matthew gave it in October 2016 because the storm came while most if not all of row crops had yet to be harvested. Farmers also were dealing with recent low commodity prices, pressure from new tariffs on agriculture exports, and debt incurred when crops failed previously.“We have to figure out a way to keep our farmers afloat. They don’t need another loan. They can’t pay back hardly what they’ve got now,” Chief Deputy Commissioner David Smith said.Troxler said direct similar payments were made to farmers after Hurricane Floyd in 1999 and following mountain floods in 2004. Legislators wanted more answers to how qualifying farmers would be chosen and what safeguards would be in place to minimize financial waste.“Fundamentally I’m not opposed to it. I just don’t know if I have enough substance right now to just buy into it,” said Rep. Chuck McGrady, a Henderson County Republican and one of the House’s chief budget-writers. He said the program could set a precedent for small businesses and tourism-related activities that may seek similar help.McGrady and fellow budget-writer Sen. Brent Jackson, a Sampson County Republican and farmer, asked Troxler to provide more information before next week’s session. McGrady suggested the program could wait until the next scheduled return of the General Assembly in late November.Duplin County farmer Morris Murphy told lawmakers he believed farmers would support the program in principle but approving it without details in place “could prove a government fiasco.”Lawmakers sounded largely on board with the $60 million in other requests made by Troxler. They include funds for state or federal matches to remove debris from streams, repair farm ponds and roads and provide hay deliveries to help livestock through the winter.The state has about $2 billion in its rainy day reserves, and this year’s state budget left $560 million unspent.last_img read more

Flaming Amys to be on the Cooking Channel

first_img A representative from the channel talked with owner Jay Muxworthy in recent weeks to make the plan, StarNews reports.Barber said she couldn’t confirm what show will be filming. The Cooking Channel airs programs such as “Late Night Eats,” “Good Eats: Reloaded,” and “Food Truck Nation.” However, word has it that “Man vs. Food,” which typically airs on the Travel Channel and is also owned by parent company Discovery, may be the show that’s coming. In each episode, host Casey Webb travels the country searching for America’s most delicious dishes and ultimate eating challenges. The Cooking Channel will be coming to Wilmington to film at Flaming Amy’s Burrito Barn in February 2019. (Photo: Allison Ballard/StarNews) WILMINGTON, NC (StarNewsOnline) — The Cooking Channel will be coming to Wilmington to film at Flaming Amy’s Burrito Barn later this month.A film crew is scheduled to appear at the well-loved local restaurant at 4002 Oleander Dr on Feb. 26, said Marlie Barber, one of the managers.- Advertisement – last_img read more

Bladen Co man arrested in connection to North Myrtle Beach sexual assault

first_img Police say Sykes allegedly made contact with a 16-year-old girl who was swimming in the ocean near 4th Avenue North. Sykes allegedly grabbed the teen and sexually assaulted her, according to police.Sykes was spotted on a surveillance camera at a nearby business, according to police. You can read more here. Derby C. Sykes of Bladenboro, North Carolina, (Credit: City of North Myrtle Beach) NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WPDE) —  A 32-year-old man was arrested Friday in North Myrtle in connection to a sexual assault on June 25th, according to a spokesperson for the City of North Myrtle Beach.Derby C. Sykes of Bladenboro, North Carolina is charged with criminal sexual conduct, third degree.- Advertisement – last_img

New law allows restaurants to reuse oyster shells as serving dishes

first_imgA new law allows restaurants to repurpose oyster shells. (Photo: Kylie Jones/WWAY) WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — There’s a new way of serving seafood. A new law now allows restaurants to repurpose oyster shells.Chef Keith Rhodes over at Catch Seafood Restaurant says they go through thousands of oyster shells every week.- Advertisement – This new law will allow restaurants to reuse these shells for more than one dish.Rhodes says they will be able to reuse the shells as serving dishes for anything from entrees to sauces.“We also do various types of ceviches and seafood dishes where we could just serve that in more of an all-natural presentation, and it would really be fitting of being here on the coast to just kind of highlight that whole experience,” he said.Related Article: Hurricane Florence impacts both seafood industry and coastal restaurantsRhodes says they will boil the shells before reusing them.He says oysters are already extremely popular along our coast, so why not introduce the new law?“Anytime we can cut out a step,” he said. “A labor where someone’s washing dishes. Anytime we can cut out a step where we’re throwing away something, that is a plus. You can be as creative as you like.”Not only is it a new serving style, Rhodes says it’s a great way to repurpose thousands of shells and help the environment all at once.Rhodes says the new law will benefit a coastal city like Wilmington in quite a few ways.He says some breweries also use oyster shells to make certain beers.last_img read more