Flint crisis drags on

first_imgThe struggle for justice continues in Flint.The crisis of lead contamination, caused by a failure to add anti-corrosive chemicals to water drawn from the Flint River, did not end when Flint returned to its previous source, Detroit Water and Sewerage.While Detroit water comes properly treated, Flint’s estimated 15,000 aging lead service lines are still leaching lead into the water. One reason is that the pipes were damaged during 18 months of exposure to untreated river water. Another is that residents are still limiting their use of the toxic water, which prevents phosphates from coating the lead pipes.The filters provided for some residents are ineffective in homes where the water has more than 150 parts per billion of lead. Many residents are without filters at all. Thus, untold numbers of people, including children, still do not have safe drinking water.Moreover, lead is not the only contaminant in the water. Showering and bathing still cause skin rashes, hair loss and breathing trouble, with disinfectant byproducts a possible factor.The people of Flint are weary of endless trips to procure bottled water, which is getting harder to come by as the state cuts back. The amount of waste is staggering, yet the fire stations, which have served as both water distribution and recycling centers, have stopped accepting empty bottles.The struggle has turned ordinary residents into celebrities, the latest being Amaryana “Mari” Copeny, whose appeal brought President Barack Obama to Flint. “Little Miss Flint” is recognized in public and often complimented. Yet 8-year-old Mari has been the subject of racist attacks over misspelled words and how she speaks.By holding a meeting in Flint the president did more than Gov. Rick Snyder, who lives just 45 minutes away in Ann Arbor but has yet to meet with residents. Obama lost all credibility with Flint residents, however, when he drank city water to support the government’s position that the water was safe to drink. Snyder infuriated residents when he pulled the same publicity stunt and then left the country, avoiding Flint water for 10 days.The president made a point of telling Flint that help is on the way, but the federal government is only sending an $80 million revolving loan fund — for all of Michigan.The latest outrage is the announcement that Flint water bills, already among the highest in the country, are expected to double over the next five years. The point of disconnecting from Detroit was supposedly to save money.Residents sue for pipe replacementOn May 13, attorneys presented initial arguments in a lawsuit charging state and city officials with violating the federal Safe Drinking Water Act. Melissa Mays, founder of “Water You Fighting For,” filed the suit along with Flint-based Pastors for Social Action, the Michigan American Civil Liberties Union and the Natural Resources Defense Council. Plaintiffs are seeking injunctive relief in the form of a court order to replace all of Flint’s lead service lines.State attorneys filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit, arguing that the state is complying with a remedial order from the federal Environmental Protection Agency. NRDC attorney Dimple Chaudhary pointed out that the state is trying to get out from under that very order. “Pipes continue to leach lead. Lead is not minimized. There is continued harm to residents of Flint,” Chaudhary told the judge.More than 100 people attended the Detroit hearing. Activists in solidarity with Flint packed the chambers, with latecomers straining to hear the proceedings outside the doorway. The plaintiffs are waiting on federal Judge David Lawson to decide if the case, one of many lawsuits by Flint residents seeking justice, will go forward.What is needed?Lead has been known to be toxic for ages, but was used in paint, gasoline, piping and other products with no regard to worker or community safety. Lead at any level is poisonous, especially to young children, who suffer developmentally. Water is only one route of entry into the body. Untold numbers of children — particularly children of color — were harmed by contact with lead-based paint until its use was banned.Many communities across the country have aging lead pipes that need to be replaced. High levels of lead in water have been reported in large cities, small towns and on Native reservations. On March 17, USA Today reported that “hundreds of schools across the nation” have water lead levels in “excessive amounts.” Earlier, the same paper reported that 2,000 water systems across the country had elevated lead content. Lead above cautionary levels has been found in school drinking fountains in Detroit and even in the well-off suburb of Grosse Pointe in Michigan.Fixing the problem would be a massive undertaking. It would cost billions upon billions of dollars and require a massive endeavor of human labor. But what is more important?Many of the cities where excessive lead has been reported in the water also have high rates of poverty and unemployment. Flint, the poorest city in Michigan, has an official poverty rate of more than 40 percent. Detroit’s rate is only a percentage point behind Flint’s. Why not put residents to work fixing pipes?It is time for a massive public works program similar to the Works Project Administration of the 1930s. The state and federal governments, the banks and corporations like General Motors who created the environmental and economic havoc, should be made to pay for what the plaintiffs are suing for: Fix the pipes now!FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

Live alone or die together? How should bookmakers offer esports?

first_imgSuraj Gosai, BlinkpoolKey decision makers across the esports and gambling industries will discuss and debate the differing methods deployed by bookmakers to effectively target the coveted esports demographic in London next week. The “Live Alone or Die Together?” bookmakers’ panel will be one of six exceptional panels over September 13-14th at Betting on Esports at Olympia, London.The expert panel will discuss the various approaches taken by different companies at the intersection of esports and gambling, with the virtues and pitfalls of each.CEO of Unikrn Rahul Sood; Head of Esports at Danske Spil Kasper Nemeth; CMO of PVP.me Michael Doyle and CEO and Co-Founder of Blinkpool Suraj Gosai will share their experiences from differing perspectives as the wonderful world of esports betting continues its growth. Sanjit Atwal, Co-Founder of Dark Site and Squawka will chair the panel. The panel presents a snapshot of the current state of the esports gambling industry, with a mixture of approaches taken across the industry.There are very few bookmakers now who don’t include esports in some capacity. There’s the no-fuss integrated sportsbook approach exhibited by many operators, separate portals within a traditional operator setup and we’ve seen the emergence of esports dedicated bookmakers. Industry leaders will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the aforementioned and shed some light on what they believe is optimal, both now and in the future.Rahul Sood of Unikrn noted: “There are a ton of things happening in the esports betting space right now.  In addition to the incredible growth, cryptocurrencies are a new area that betting operators should take a look at.  Unikrn is at the cutting edge of both areas and I’d like to share some of my insights in this area.”Blinkpool’s Suraj Gosai commented: “Esports is divisive within the betting industry, with a number of operators taking very different approaches to the vertical.“Esports are the first spectator activity (dare I say sport!), drawing in monstrous online audiences, that has been created in the internet age; this is a unique situation for the online betting industry. I’m looking forward to discussing the differences and similarities of the audience, and the opportunities this present to established and new companies within the space.”With Betting on Esports proudly boasting six panels across two days at SBC’s Betting on Sports Conference, firms and prospective attendees are encouraged to sign up now or risk missing out on the best betting conference esports has witnessed.There’ll also be a FIFA tournament and networking parties each evening, in addition to the numerous panels over three tracks, for all attendees to enjoy. Tickets include access to the full Betting on Sports 2017 conference, with over 1,000 delegates, 190 speakers, 60 exhibitors and more confirmed! – BOOK HERETo read more about the event, download the agenda and see the whole list of speakers and attendees, visit the Betting on Esports website HERE.last_img read more

Wellington Police Notes: Tuesday, March 26, 2013

first_imgWellington Police Notes for Tuesday, March 26, 2013:•4:31 a.m. Officers investigated an assault of a known suspect in the 900 block. W. 7th, Wellington.•10:24 a.m. Jessica D. Henton, 36, Medford, Okla. was arrested and confined on Sumner County arrest and detain order.•9:07 p.m. Officers investigated a vehicle fire in the 2000 block. E. Lincoln, Wellington involving a vehicle owned by Edith O. Foreman, WF, 40, Wellington.•8:15 p.m. Officers took a report of a suspicious activity by a known suspect(s) in the 1700 block. E. 16th, Wellington.•11:30 p.m. Anthony J. Coleman, 24, Wellington was issued a notice to appear charged with defective headlamps.•11:55 p.m. Scott A. LeValley, 44, Wellington was issued a notice to appear charged with failure to obey traffic signal.last_img read more

LEEWARG Calls for Responsible Post-Elections Media Reporting

first_imgAmb. Tunde Ajisomo (center) reading the group’s press statement.Presents its first post-elections preliminary findingsThe Liberia Elections Early Warning and Response Group (LEEWARG) has called on the Press Union of Liberia (PUL) to ensure that media practitioners in the country uphold the ethics of the profession in this crucial electoral period and going forward if peace is to be maintained.Addressing journalists over the weekend at its second post-elections press conference on its preliminary findings before and during the October polls, the chairman of LEEWARG, ECOWAS Ambassador to Liberia, Tunde O. Ajisomo, said while it is a good thing to have press freedom, the responsibilities associated with that freedom should not be abused; and most importantly, must not neglect the need to protect the hard-earned peace.“The Press Union of Liberia should ensure that media institutions maintain its code of ethics in providing the public credible information on the electoral processes and avoid bias and sensationalism in their reportage. This will help avoid ethical transgression that may inflame electoral violence,” he said.Making reference to what happened at the Calvary Chapel Mission School precinct in Paynesville, Montserrado District #6, Amb. Ajisomo said journalists who visited that voting center nearly “let heaven lose” based on their inflammatory reportage about happenings as the polling went on.“Those journalists who were in huge numbers, over-reported about the electoral irregularities such as late arrival of ballots, incompetence of some polling staff, among others that unfolded,” he said, adding that it is about time the PUL becomes proactive in monitoring the operations of media houses and their employees who report from the field.Touching on his organization’s electoral findings, he said inasmuch as there were challenges, the general atmosphere of the polls was peaceful.He explained that his organization’s key observations on the electoral process include, but are not limited to, “voting done on October 11 in Saygbeken, Debepo, Sinoe electoral District #2 instead of the previous day due to the late arrival of elections materials.”“Challenges with voter registration card matching with final registration roll (FRR) at many centers led to the discouragement of voters. In the case of Margibi County, Rock Church Community, District #1, including other areas, people left the polling centers because they were told that their names were not on the FRR and therefore they could not vote,” Amb. Ajisomo noted.He added that in Korduah community of Buchanan, Grand Bassa electoral District #3, a precinct center was relocated to a new vicinity without the knowledge of those who were to vote there, thereby creating tension after the relocation was discovered by a few voters.He named Grand Gedeh District #1, Gbarpolu District #1 and Montserrado Districts #6 and 17 as areas where challenges were identified because of the polling staff’s inability to identify the serial numbers on voters’ cards.InterventionsAmb. Ajisomo said upon discovering the challenges, LEEWARG made calls to the NEC, LNP and other key stakeholders in Monrovia to address issues emanating from those polling centers.“We held four press conferences to provide situational reports on the elections and to generally appeal for calm and respect for the electoral process,” he noted, adding that a shuttle diplomacy was conducted with some key political leaders and stakeholders to encourage them to have confidence in the NEC’s delivery of a credible electoral outcome.Amb. Ajisomo called on state security, especially the LNP, to continue to be responsive to emerging security threats to the electoral process.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more