ACTRA Toronto call upon the government of the people to stand up

first_imgACTRA Toronto calls upon the government of the people to stand up for Canada and Canadian performers Login/Register With: Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Facebook Twitterlast_img

How do you survive as an indie filmmaker We heard it from

first_img Facebook At NYFF 2016, a panel of accomplished independent filmmakers came together to share both personal challenges and keys to survival. It was a great mix: director Roger Ross Williams (Life Animated), cinematographer Ellen Kuras (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), director Ira Sachs (Little Men), and actor-turned-director Rose McGowan (Dawn). Each one of these artists is fiercely independent; each one of them has had to fight hard to survive. All value their own original voice far more than money or fame.So how do they survive in the indie world? A mix of difficulties overcome—part harrowing, part exhilarating—and wisdom gained. By the end of the panel, one thing was clear: none of these artists would trade creative freedom for the studio system, and all of them had advice for aspiring filmmakers. Below are the high points of their advice.Roger Ross Williams: “Be passionate”When asked what keeps him moving forward, Roger Ross Williams was insistent: “For me, it has to be a story that is so deeply personal, and so painful to make, that you have to do it. That’s what will carry you through the long journey as a filmmaker..” Advertisement Advertisement Take it from a man whose passion has gotten him far. Williams was not only the first African-American to win an Academy Award for a documentary short (Music by Prudence, 2010), but also the first African-American director to win for producing a film, short, or feature. He has since directed two independent feature-length documentaries, God Loves Uganda (2013) and Life, Animated (2016), both of which were nominated for and won numerous awards on the festival circuit.Williams started off in mainstream media as a journalist and producer for TV Nation, ABC News, NBC News, CNN, PBS, Comedy Central, and the Sundance Channel. He was miserable. “I like to say I’m a recovering journalist because I hated it,” he said. “I was frustrated working for the man.”He recalled covering the Sundance Film Festival in the late ‘90s and interviewing all the filmmakers in competition: Neil LaBute for In The Company of Men (1997) and Darren Aronofsky for Pi (1998), among others. This was a turning point. Advertisement Login/Register With: Twitter LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment last_img read more

John Levi warrior chief speaks to APTN about antifracking protest

first_imgAPTN National NewsHe says he’s a warrior chief defending the land from environmental destruction.John Levi leads a group from Elsipogtog First Nation in New Brunswick who are fighting against a fracking company looking for shale gas.The battle may be unwinnable, but Levi isn’t giving up.APTN’s Ossie Michelin has the story.last_img

Protests violence in Haiti prompts international call for realistic and lasting solutions

The so-called Core Group is made up of the head of UN Mission MINUJUSTH, Helen Meagher La Lime; and the UN ambassadors of Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Spain, the European Union, the United States, and the Special Representative of the Organization of American States.They took note of the demands expressed by demonstrators on Thursday, aimed at a worsening economic crisis that has led to a drop in living standards, inflation at around 15 per cent, a growing national deficit, and allegations of corruption levelled at President Jovenel Moise, before he took office. The group “deplores the loss of life and property damage caused by the unacceptable acts of violence that took place on the margins of the rallies, while acknowledging the professionalism demonstrated by the Haitian National Police,” said the statement issued on Monday.According to news reports, at least four were killed and dozens injured during four days of protests in the capital Port-au-Prince, and other cities across the Caribbean island nation. Annual carnival festivities were cancelled in parts of the country at the weekend.Opposition groups called for demonstrations after a court report alleged that officials and former Government ministers had reportedly misappropriated millions of dollars in loans made to Haiti by Venezuela after 2008.“The Group members call on political and civil society leaders to “engage in a constructive and inclusive dialogue in order to identify and implement realistic and lasting solutions to the political and economic crisis currently occurring in Haiti.”The Government needs to “accelerate its structural reforms aimed at promoting a better management of the State’s resources” said the communique, “improve the living conditions of the most vulnerable, fight inequalities, and foster a conducive investment climate to stimulate the development of productive sectors – essential to catalyzing the country’s growth.”“Change must come through the ballot box, and not through violence,” said the statement, which concludes by urging the Government and legislators “to collaborate for the electoral law and the 2018-2019 budget law to be adopted and promulgated as soon as possible. It is only through these actions that the elections scheduled by the Constitution for October 2019, can be held in a free, fair and transparent manner, and that an institutional vacuum will be avoided.” read more

Poll Do you think the Obamas should get the Freedom of Dublin

first_img Feb 7th 2017, 9:26 AM Image: /Photocall Ireland Tuesday 7 Feb 2017, 9:26 AM YesNo I don’t knowVote 27,038 Views Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article http://jrnl.ie/3226678 Share93 Tweet Email Image: /Photocall Ireland Poll: Do you think the Obamas should get the Freedom of Dublin? The award acknowledges the contribution of certain people to the life of the city, important visitors to Dublin, or people who have made significant changes internationally.center_img By Cliodhna Russell 95 Comments No  (8641) Yes (7517) Short URL I don’t know (981) FORMER US PRESIDENT Barack Obama and his wife Michelle are set to become the 82nd and 83rd people to be awarded the Freedom of the City of Dublin.It comes after the proposal was ratified at a monthly Dublin council meeting yesterday evening.However, several councillors belonging to the Anti Austerity Alliance, People Before Profit and the Workers Party staged a walk-out in protest.They’re opposed to the Freedom of the City being offered to the Obamas because of US drone air strikes carried out under President Obama.So today we’re asking, do you think the Obamas should get the Freedom of Dublin?  Poll Results:last_img read more

WWE announces new campaign beginning September 5 to benefit cancer research for

first_img WWE issued the following press release on Thursday.WWE® CONTINUES SUPPORT FOR PEDIATRIC CANCER RESEARCHSTAMFORD, Conn., September 1, 2016 – In an effort to help find a cure for pediatric cancer, WWE (NYSE: WWE) today announced the first-ever “Get the Gear, Give the Gear” campaign, where fans, beginning Monday, September 5 through the end of the month, can purchase bracelets and bandanas with 100 percent of net proceeds benefiting Connor’s Cure, to support pediatric cancer research.WWE will utilize its global assets including WWE Network and TV broadcasts, live events, PSAs, digital and social media to generate awareness and encourage fans to get involved. Throughout the month, the WWE announcer table, entrance ramp, ring skirts and ring posts will go gold to promote the fight against pediatric cancer. Additionally, WWE Superstars will visit pediatric cancer patients at hospitals across the country.“WWE is extremely proud to expand our support of Connor’s Cure around Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month,” said Stephanie McMahon, WWE Chief Brand Officer. “The continued effort to raise awareness and funds in the fight against pediatric cancer is important to help find a cure for this devastating disease. We are grateful to the WWE Superstars, fans, The V Foundation and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh for their continued support.”“The V Foundation is excited to recognize Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month with such a fantastic and motivated partner,” said Susan Braun, CEO of The V Foundation. “We are both driven to end this disease, and working as a team to meet that goal means success can come more quickly.”All funds raised through Connor’s Cure will be distributed through the V Foundation’s grant making process. In addition, WWE will donate a Connor’s Cure bracelet or bandana to a child battling pediatric cancer for every item purchased. Fans will also be able to give a donation during checkout on WWEShop.com and can use the Connor’s Cure bracelet filter on their Facebook and Twitter profiles to show their support.Earlier this year, WWE and The V Foundation announced a multi-year partnership to support pediatric cancer research nationally through funds raised by Connor’s Cure. In 2014, Connor’s Cure was created by Stephanie McMahon and her husband, Paul “Triple H” Levesque, to support pediatric brain and spinal cord cancer research. Connor’s Cure was established in honor of 8-year-old WWE fan Connor Michalek, a patient at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC who battled medulloblastoma, a rare tumor that affects the brain and spinal cord. To date, Connor’s Cure has raised more than $1 million and assisted more than 100 families around the world.Every year, 12,000-15,000 children are newly diagnosed with cancer in the U.S. Through the efforts of The V Foundation, progress is being made with cure rates for most pediatric cancers dramatically improving. The V Foundation has awarded nearly $20 million through 66 pediatric research grants to-date, including more than $5 million to pediatric cancer research in 2015.About The V Foundation for Cancer ResearchThe V Foundation for Cancer Research was founded in 1993 by ESPN and the late Jim Valvano, legendary North Carolina State basketball coach and ESPN commentator. Since 1993, The Foundation has funded more than $150 million in cancer research grants nationwide. It awards 100 percent of all direct cash donations to cancer research and related programs. Due to generous donors, the Foundation has an endowment that covers administrative expenses. The Foundation awards peer-reviewed grants through a competitive awards process vetted by a Scientific Advisory Committee. For more information on The V Foundation or to make a donation, please visit www.jimmyv.org.About WWE:WWE, a publicly traded company (NYSE: WWE), is an integrated media organization and recognized leader in global entertainment. The company consists of a portfolio of businesses that create and deliver original content 52 weeks a year to a global audience. WWE is committed to family friendly entertainment on its television programming, pay-per-view, digital media and publishing platforms. WWE programming reaches more than 650 million homes worldwide in 25 languages. WWE Network, the first-ever 24/7 over-the-top premium network that includes all live pay-per-views, scheduled programming and a massive video-on-demand library, is currently available in more than 180 countries. The company is headquartered in Stamford, Conn., with offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Mexico City, Mumbai, Shanghai, Singapore, Dubai, Munich and Tokyo.Additional information on WWE (NYSE: WWE) can be found at wwe.com and corporate.wwe.com. For information on our global activities, go to http://www.wwe.com/worldwide/.Recommended videosPowered by AnyClipIs WWE Losing Its Audience?Video Player is loading.Play VideoPauseUnmuteDuration 0:29/Current Time 0:05Loaded: 100.00%0:05Remaining Time -0:24 FullscreenUp NextThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Replay the list Facebook Now Playing Up Next Seth Rollins Defends WWE On Two Separate Occasions WhatsApp Google+ Is WWE Losing Its Audience? Videos Articles Triple H Pinterest WWE Rescheduling San Jose NXT Live Podcast: Reviewing and discussing WWE Clash of Champions from Charlotte Wrestleview Live #65: Reviewing and discussing WWE Clash of Champions from Charlotte center_img Adam Martin RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Now Playing Up Next Vince Mcmahon Twitter Roman Reigns is in Remission Now Playing Up Next Bully Ray Calls Out Ring Of Honor Fan On Twitter Now Playing Up Next Videos Articles Now Playing Up Next Clash of Champions Highlights: Luke Harper returns, Rollins/Strowman, Becky against Sasha last_img read more

Melissa Etheridge to rock ilani stage

first_imgSome folks might think of Melissa Etheridge as “the female Bruce Springsteen,” but as far as her die-hard fans are concerned, Bruce is only the male Melissa Etheridge.Etheridge, the raspy-voiced rocker whose songs range from fierce declarations of love and longing to battle cries for progressive politics, will play a concert July 31 in the Cowlitz Ballroom at ilani. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday for $35 and $55.Etheridge was born in Leavenworth, Kan., and she started playing the guitar at age 8. Her intense, confessional style is sometimes called “heartland rock,” but folks in the heartland may not have realized that Etheridge is a lesbian until she said so publicly. That was in 1993, long before homosexuality had gained anything like general acceptance in American culture — but Etheridge’s rock ‘n’ roll star was rising fast by then. Ironically, the album release where she declared herself a lesbian, “Yes I Am,” is the same album release that made her a mainstream rock star.Etheridge has been nominated for Grammy awards 15 times, and won twice; she also won an Academy Award for Best Original Song for “I Need to Wake Up,” which was featured in Al Gore’s climate change documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.” While known as a soulful rocker, Etheridge has also made a name for herself as an activist for LGBTQ and environmental causes. She was open about her battle with breast cancer, her endorsement of medical cannabis and the fact that her tour bus got busted in 2017 at the U.S./Canada border. (She was carrying cannabis oil, which she said she takes for post-op cancer pain.)Now, Etheridge is back with a new album called “The Medicine Show.” Some critics have wondered if the big, rocking album is Melissa Etheridge trying a little too hard to sound like Melissa Etheridge — but many more critics and fans are lapping it up. “The Medicine Show” reached No. 1 on the Americana/folk album charts in April.“Calling the album `The Medicine Show’ puts straight up, front and center, that this is about health, wellness … however you want to understand it,” Etheridge said. “It influences every song on the album.”last_img

Medical examiner Man died of smoke inhalation in Ridgefield fire

first_imgThe Clark County Medical Examiner’s Office on Thursday confirmed Dale Shoemaker was the man who died in the fatal fire near Ridgefield late Tuesday.Shoemaker, 59, died of smoke inhalation, the medical examiner said in a bulletin. The manner of death was accidental. Shoemaker was found in his home after the fire.About 25 firefighters, nine fire engines and three water tenders from Clark County Fire & Rescue and Clark County Fire District 3 responded to the fire just after 8:15 p.m. Tuesday. It took them about an hour to gain control over the fire.The fire was caused by improper use of a wood stove, said Fire Marshal Richard Martin.“If you’re going to use a wood stove, you have to clean it out on a fairly regular basis,” he said. He said people should avoid keeping combustible materials close to it, operate it in the way it was meant to be, and keep the door closed while using it. He said people should also clean their chimneys on a somewhat regular basis.last_img read more

National Weather Service Stagnant air to last through Friday

first_imgThe National Weather Service has issued an air stagnation advisory for southwestern Washington, increasing the potential for low air quality in the Vancouver area. Air stagnation is the result of high pressure and light winds. Because there is very little air movement, the potential for pollution is increased and those sensitive to air quality may experience difficulty breathing along with other health problems, the weather service reports. The advisory will last through noon Friday. Wednesday’s forecast shows patchy, freezing fog before 10 a.m. that is expected to gradually clear. High temperatures are expected to be 39 degrees, with temperatures dropping to as low as 27 degrees tonight.last_img read more

Huawei reportedly calls for international cybersecurity standards

first_img Share your voice 2 2:43 Tech Industry Politics Comments Tagscenter_img Huawei  is in the thick of discussions about cybersecurity. Ramon Costa/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images Huawei reportedly wants everyone on the same page about cybersecurity. At the opening of a cybersecurity center in Brussels on Tuesday, Huawei Chairman Ken Hu urged governments, regulators and the telecom industry to create a common set of cybersecurity standards, according to Reuters. The Chinese telecom company’s center reportedly lets customers and governments test its source code, software and products. “The fact is that both the public and private sectors lack a basic common understanding of this issue,” Hu said, according to Reuters. “As a result, different stakeholders have different expectations and there is no alignment of responsibilities.”That’s just part of a complicated picture. Huawei has come under scrutiny because of worries that it could be a security risk given its ties to the Chinese government. International tensions were heightened in December with the arrest of CFO Meng Wanzhou over alleged violations of Iran sanctions. Canada on Friday granted the US’ request to extradite Meng.US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in February that the US won’t partner with countries that use Huawei’s technology because they would pose security threats. Huawei didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. Now playing: Watch this: Huawei Mate X is a foldable phone with 5G Huaweilast_img read more

Poll Majorities Of Both Parties Favor Increased Gun Restrictions

first_imgJohn Moore/Getty ImagesShop owner Jeff Binkley displays an AR-15 “Sport” rifle at Sarge’s Sidearms on Sept. 29, 2016 near Benson, Ariz.In the wake of the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, most Americans — regardless of party — favor tightening restrictions on firearms, according to a new NPR/Ipsos poll.But significant partisan divides remain — and perhaps relatedly, they exist alongside divides in knowledge about guns in America.Eight-in-10 Americans told the pollsters they favor bans on assault weapons, high-capacity ammunition magazines and “bump stocks,” an accessory used by the Las Vegas shooter that allows a semi-automatic rifle to fire like an automatic weapon.Eight-in-10 likewise said they favor a federal database to track all gun sales. On each of these questions, majorities of Democrats, independents and Republicans all were in favor of the restrictions to some degree.But the share who were in favor, as well as the intensity of their agreement, varied by party — sometimes widely. For example, 91 percent of Democrats, along with 76 percent of independents and 70 percent of Republicans, said they are for banning assault-style weapons.However, 74 percent of Democrats “strongly favor” this kind of restriction, as opposed to “somewhat favoring” it, compared to only 48 percent of Republicans “strongly” in favor and 45 percent of independents who said so.Similar divides existed on other restrictions — fully 88 percent of Democrats, 77 percent of Republicans, and 82 percent of independents favor banning bump stocks. But while three-quarters of Democrats “strongly favor” this kind of ban, only around half of Republicans and independents do.This kind of discrepancy in intensity can be important to show the softness of support for a measure — and can be an indication of how the group less “strongly” in favor can be swayed as arguments become more hotly political on specific topics, like an assault-weapons or a high-capacity magazine ban.This isn’t the only indication post-Vegas that Americans have an appetite for more gun control. A recent Morning Consult/Politico poll likewise showed that a majority of Republicans, along with Democrats and independents, favoring several different types of gun-control laws, including banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, as well as creating a national gun-sale database.But the new interest may be short-lived, Ipsos Public Affairs President Cliff Young said.“What we know actually is that gun violence like this typically has a short-term effect on public opinion where there’s a crystallizing event” that temporarily bumps support for gun control upward, he said. “We expect there should be some sort of half-life to it.”And importantly, while Republicans and Democrats alike support specific restrictions, the general idea of tighter gun control is much more firmly supported by Democrats than anyone else — 84 percent of Democrats said gun laws should be “a lot” or “somewhat” stricter than today, compared to 61 percent of independents and 55 percent of Republicans.One-third of Republicans said gun laws right now are “about right,” compared to 23 percent of independents and just 9 percent of Democrats.Partisan differences also showed up in exposure to guns — significantly more Republicans than Democrats have fired guns, own guns and have friends who own them, the survey shows.And that dovetails with some particularly wide partisan gaps on attitudes toward guns. Two-thirds of Republicans agreed with the statement “owning a gun would make me feel safer,” compared to around just a third of Democrats.Likewise, 72 percent of Republicans agreed with the statement, “The benefits of gun ownership outweigh the risks.” Democrats were the near opposite of that, with 60 percent disagreeing.And those different attitudes play into partisan gaps in Americans’ knowledge about gun facts, Young said. “Democrats see the issue through the lens of the risks that gun ownership presents, and Republicans don’t,” he added.Young points to a true-false question in which 59 percent of Democrats responded correctly that it’s true that households with guns are more likely to experience a fatality from crime, accident or suicide than households without them. By comparison, 37 percent of Republicans and 39 percent of independents also responded “true.”Republicans are more likely to own guns — and believe that the benefits of gun ownership outweigh the costs. The poll also showed that they tend to have more proximity to guns but less proximity to violence than Democrats. Altogether, that may contribute to Republicans perceiving guns as less harmful.There was also a partisan gap in Americans’ knowledge of what Congress did (or didn’t do) after the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting, which left 20 children and seven adults dead.Just 42 percent of Americans responded correctly to the statement, “After the Sandy Hook massacre, Congress put tough new background check laws in place.”That’s false. There was an effort to pass stricter background checks, but it never passed.More Democrats (52 percent) knew that than Republicans (36 percent).The NPR/Ipsos poll was conducted online, surveying 1,006 adults from October 10-11. For the full sample, there is a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points. For Democrats in the sample, it’s 6.1 percentage points; for Republicans-only, it’s 5.8 percentage points and for independents, it’s 8.2 percentage points.Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Sharelast_img read more

Fortnite Maker Epic Games Buys ComcastBacked Video Chat App Houseparty

first_imgSocial video chat app Houseparty has been acquired by Epic Games, the maker of Fortnite, it announced with a blog post Wednesday morning. Financial details of the deal haven’t bee announced.“Houseparty brings people together, creating positive social interactions in real time,” said Epic CEO Tim Sweeney in a statement. “By teaming up, we can build even more fun, shared experiences than what could be achieved alone.”“Joining Epic is a great step forward in achieving our mission of bringing empathy to online communication,” added Houseparty co-founder and CEO Sima Sistani. “We have a common vision to make human interaction easier and more enjoyable, and always with respect for user privacy.”Houseparty started out as a video chat app, but has since added a number of additional social features, including mini games, chat and more. The app has been installed by approximately 35 million iOS and Android users worldwide, according to a new estimate from app analytics specialist Sensor Tower, with 40% of those users residing outside the U.S. Popular on Variety ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15center_img Those numbers are dwarfed by the user base of Fortnite, which has over 250 million players, according to Epic. Still, Houseparty could be a good addition for the gaming company, which also develops the Unreal game engine. It may allow Epic to build social and chat functionality for games that keeps users in the fold, doing away with the need for third-party voice and video chat services.Houseparty has raised a total of $70 million from Sequoia Capitial, Greylock Partners, Comcast Ventures and others.last_img read more

VIDEO Super chill bro went surfing for the first time during the

first_imgNew York City and most of the Northeast is buried under several feet of snow after getting tagged by the biggest blizzard of the year.While the majority of the population is staying inside until the weather passes, one super chill surf bro thought it was the perfect time to shred some tasty waves.A reporter with NYC Pix 11 interviewed the frozen Spicoli after he exited the water to find out what the hell he was thinking.Incredibly, the guy said that it was his first time ever surfing. He also asked the reporter if he could bum a ride back to his place. Mr. Hand put it best when he said, “Am I hallucinating here? Just what in the hell do you think you’re doing?”h/t Terez Owens Advertisementlast_img read more

Motorcyclist taken to hospital after accident on A521

first_imgDriver named following fatal collision Dad slams ‘disgusting’ hospital window Police search for missing woman Punter found hiding in bushes center_img Get the biggest Daily stories by emailSubscribeSee our privacy noticeThank you for subscribingSee our privacy noticeCould not subscribe, try again laterInvalid EmailA motorcyclist has been taken to hospital after an accident on a Staffordshire Moorlands road this afternoon. Emergency services, including the air ambulance, were called to the A521 Cheadle Road near Forsbrook shortly after 4pm today. The motorcyclist, a man, was taken to Royal Stoke University Hospital by land ambulance – with his injuries not believed to be life-threatening. The road remains partially blocked following an accident this afternoon, according to traffic data company Inrix. A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokeswoman said:  “We were called at 4.15pm to reports of an RTC involving a car and a motorcycle. Read MoreNew inquest to be held into death of boy, 3, at scandal-hit Stafford Hospital over claim milk killed him   “One ambulance, two paramedic officers and the Midlands Air Ambulance from Tattenhill attended. “We treated one patient, a male motorcyclist, who has been by land ambulance to Royal Stoke University Hospital. “His injuries are not thought to be life-threatening.” Elsewhere in Staffordshire this afternoon a man was airlifted to hospital after a car overturned in a two-vehicle collision near Uttoxeter. A woman was also taken to hospital via land ambulance following that incident. Read MoreTop stories on StokeonTrentLive Want to tell us about something going on where you live?  Let us know – Tweet us    @SOTLive    or message us on    our Facebook page. And if you have pictures to share, tag us on Instagram at StokeonTrentLive.last_img read more

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first_img Related Content Video Player is loading.GE Cardiographe cardiac CT scanner at SCCT19Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:38Loaded: 26.15%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:38 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. 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Videos | Radiation Therapy | July 30, 2019 VIDEO: Use of Radiotherapy to Noninvasively Ablate Ventricular Tachycardia Pierre Qian, MBBS, read more Video Player is loading.Mahadevappa Mahesh discusses trends in medical physics at the 2019 AAPM meetingPlay VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 4:01Loaded: 4.04%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -4:01 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. Sponsored Content | Case Study | Radiation Dose Management | August 13, 2019 The Challenge of Pediatric Radiation Dose Management Radiation dose management is central to child patient safety. Medical imaging plays an increasing role in the accurate… read more October 4, 2013 — A team of pediatric neurosurgeons and neuroradiologists at the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center has developed a way to minimize dangerous radiation exposure in children with a condition that requires repeat computed tomography (CT) scans of the brain. The experts say they reduced exposure without sacrificing the diagnostic accuracy of the images or compromising treatment decisions.The approach, described ahead of print in a report in the Journal of Neurosurgery, calls for using fewer X-ray snapshots or “slices” of the brain taken by CT scanners, seven instead of the usual 32 to 40 slices. The approach, the study found, reduced radiation exposure by an average of nearly 92 percent per patient compared with standard head CT scans, while still rendering the images diagnostically accurate.“The traditional thinking has been that fewer slices would, by definition, mean less clarity and less accuracy, rendering a CT scan suboptimal, but our findings show otherwise,” says lead investigator Jonathan Pindrik, M.D., chief neurosurgery resident at Johns Hopkins.The research involved analysis of CT scans of patients with excessive fluid in the brain, a condition known as hydrocephalus that requires periodic fluid-draining surgeries and a head CT before each procedure. The investigators compared two standard CT scans with two limited-slice, low-dose CT scans for each one of 50 children, ages 17 and younger, treated for hydrocephalus over five years at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center. The standard CT scan images were performed prior to the launch of the new radiation-minimizing protocol.In all 50 patients, the radiation-minimizing technique produced clear and 100-percent accurate images of the brain ventricles — the draining system that carries cerebrospinal fluid in and out of the brain. When capturing changes in ventricle size, however, the low-dose approach resulted in a 4 percent error rate: Two of the 50 images were visually ambiguous, generating confusion among the clinicians who reviewed them.There were no false negatives in the low-dose images, but three false positives, the study showed. In other words, there were no instances of clinicians falsely perceiving normal ventricular size, but three instances of clinicians perceiving a change in ventricular size when there was none. On balance, the radiation-minimizing approach was clearly adequate, the researchers say, and would have not compromised treatment outcomes.The Hopkins team says the radiation-minimizing technique could be especially valuable in pediatric emergency rooms, where the need for quick diagnosis precludes the use of more cumbersome, radiation-free imaging alternatives like magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). It also can be used for routine evaluation in smaller community hospitals that may lack MRI equipment, the researchers say.CT scans are invaluable imaging tools that have revolutionized the diagnosis and treatment of many conditions by providing fast, reliable and accurate images, but they have driven up levels of radiation exposure in both children and adults, the investigators say. Ionizing radiation, used in X-rays and CT scans, has been long implicated in the development of certain cancers because of its ability to damage DNA. Children are especially vulnerable to the effects of radiation because of their smaller size, growing tissues and rapidly dividing cells, and because of their longer lifespans that allow slow-growing cancers to emerge decades after exposure, the researchers note.“We have been searching for ways to minimize radiation exposure in kids without sacrificing the diagnostic accuracy of the images — which is no easy feat — but we believe our limited-slice CT scans achieve that balance,” said senior study investigator Edward Ahn, M.D., a pediatric neurosurgeon at the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.Hydrocephalus is often treated by placing a catheter that drains excess fluid from the brain into the abdomen, a procedure known as ventriculo-peritoneal shunting. Children with brain shunts require periodic imaging to assess catheter position and function. Shunt failure that occurs when a catheter dislodges or infection sets in is a common and dangerous complication and considered an emergency. However because shunt failure often causes non-specific symptoms such as headache, vomiting and fever, a definitive diagnosis requires a brain scan.There are more than 62 million CT scans performed each year in the United States, four million of them in children. Experts estimate that radiation from medical imaging is the single largest source of radiation exposure in the population, and that up to 2 percent of all cancers stem from exposure to medical radiation.The work was funded by The Hartwell Foundation. Co-investigators included Thierry Huisman, M.D.; Mahadeveappa Mahesh, M.S., Ph.D.; and Aylin Tekes, M.D., all from Johns Hopkins.For more information: www.newswise.com/institutions/newsroom/63 FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 Video Player is loading.Pierre Qian explains radiotherapy to ablate VTPlay VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 7:34Loaded: 2.19%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -7:34 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. 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Videos | CT Angiography (CTA) | August 07, 2019 VIDEO: Walk Around of a Siemens Go.Top Dedicated Cardiac Scanner This is a quick walk around of the new Siemens Somatom Go.top cardiovascular edition compact computed tomography (CT) read more Video Player is loading.Arthur Agatston explains the history of CT calcium scoring Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 9:54Loaded: 1.67%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -9:54 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. 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Videos | Cardiac Imaging | July 30, 2019 VIDEOS | EP LAB | JULY 26, 2019 VIDEO: What Electrophysiologists Need From CT Imaging Prior to AF and VT Ablations Mark Ibrahim, M.D., F read more The CT scanner might not come with protocols that are adequate for each hospital situation, so at Phoenix Children’s Hospital they designed their own protocols, said Dianna Bardo, M.D., director of body MR and co-director of the 3D Innovation Lab at Phoenix Children’s. News | Artificial Intelligence | August 05, 2019 Montefiore Nyack Hospital Uses Aidoc AI to Spot Urgent Conditions Faster Montefiore Nyack Hospital, an acute care hospital in Rockland County, N.Y., announced it is utilizing artificial… read more Videos | CT Angiography (CTA) | August 07, 2019 VIDEO: Walk Around of a GE Cardiographe Dedicated Cardiac CT Scanner This is a quick walk around of the GE Healthcare Cardiographe dedicated cardiac CT system on display at the… read more Videos | Cardiac Imaging | July 30, 2019 VIDEO: The History of CT Calcium Scoring Arthur Agatston, M.D., clinical pro read more Video Player is loading.Cynthia McCollough explains new advances in CT technologyPlay VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 13:56Loaded: 1.17%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -13:56 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. 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Video Player is loading.Mark Ibrahim explains what EPs need from CT imagingPlay VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 5:23Loaded: 3.08%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -5:23 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. 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News | CT Angiography (CTA) | August 06, 2019 Artificial Intelligence Improves Heart Attack Risk Assessment When used with a common heart scan, machine learning, a type of artificial intelligence (AI), does better than… read more Videos | Computed Tomography (CT) | July 30, 2019 VIDEO: New Advances in CT Imaging Technology Cynthia McColl… read more News | October 04, 2013 Johns Hopkins Experts Devise a Way to Cut Radiation Exposure in Children Needing Repeat Brain Scans Videos | AAPM | July 29, 2019 VIDEO: Trends in Medical Physics at the AAPM 2019 meeting … read more Siemens Go.Top CT scanner at SCCT19Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 1:05Loaded: 15.14%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -1:05 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.last_img read more

ScImage Introduces PICOM ModalityGuard for Cybersecurity

first_imgTechnology | Cybersecurity | August 07, 2019 ScImage Introduces PICOM ModalityGuard for Cybersecurity ModalityGuard protects unsecure DICOM and HL7 data during transfer while maintaining PACS workflow flexibility Technology | Contrast Media | August 05, 2019 Bracco Receives FDA Approval for Varibar Thin Liquid for Oral Suspension Bracco Diagnostics Inc. announced U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for Varibar Thin Liquid (barium… read more News | Artificial Intelligence | August 08, 2019 Half of Hospital Decision Makers Plan to Invest in AI by 2021 August 8, 2019 — A recent study conducted by Olive AI explores how hospital leaders are responding to the imperative read more Technology | Radiographic Fluoroscopy (RF) | August 09, 2019 Shimadzu Medical Systems Receives FDA 510(k) for FluoroSpeed X1 RF System Shimadzu Medical Systems USA, a subsidiary of Shimadzu Corp., announced they have received U.S. Food and Drug… read more The CT scanner might not come with protocols that are adequate for each hospital situation, so at Phoenix Children’s Hospital they designed their own protocols, said Dianna Bardo, M.D., director of body MR and co-director of the 3D Innovation Lab at Phoenix Children’s. News | PACS | August 09, 2019 Lake Medical Imaging Selects Infinitt for Multi-site RIS/PACS Infinitt North America will be implementing Infinitt RIS (radiology information system)/PACS (picture archiving and… read more News | PACS | August 08, 2019 NetDirector Launches Cloud-based PDF to DICOM Conversion Service NetDirector, a cloud-based data exchange and integration platform, has diversified their radiology automation options… read more Sponsored Content | Case Study | Radiation Dose Management | August 13, 2019 The Challenge of Pediatric Radiation Dose Management Radiation dose management is central to child patient safety. Medical imaging plays an increasing role in the accurate… read more center_img News | Medical 3-D Printing | August 08, 2019 RSNA and ACR to Collaborate on Landmark Medical 3D Printing Registry The Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) and the American College of Radiology (ACR) will launch a new medical… read more August 7, 2019 — ScImage Inc. is bridging the gap between security and functionality with the introduction of the PICOM ModalityGuard. Health institutions no longer need to choose between being prepared for security threats and having a flexible and interoperable picture archiving and communication system (PACS) workflow.In a standard workflow, every data packet that is transferred between PACS, electronic health records (EHRs) or financial systems are heavily encrypted to protect patient data — everything except DICOM and HL7 traffic. This represents a significant security risk, as simple packet capture software could reveal patient information in plain text.“PICOM ModalityGuard delivers a highly secure, lightweight, transparent device to isolate unsecure DICOM and non-DICOM devices from the enterprise by placing them in an isolated private network” said ScImage’s founder and CEO, Sai Raya, Ph.D. “PICOM ModalityGuard™ provides transparent DICOM C-Store, C-Find, C-Move, MWL services to these devices. Legacy medical devices can operate the way normally operate and they are fully protected from cybersecurity threats.”For a ScImage customer that is already using PICOM365 Enterprise PACS, the traffic between PicomGateway and the PICOM365 is already secure; but, third-party enterprise PACS can introduce new security risks that are solved by PICOM ModalityGuard. Organizations are also protected in situations where patient data is captured in a non-DICOM format.PICOM365 by ScImage allows physicians, practices and patients to securely access any image, anytime, from anywhere. Deployable on-premise, in the cloud or in a hybrid environment, PICOM365 is a flexible, scalable and secure solution for any size organization to read, report and exchange imaging data in a DoD, SCAP and STIGs approved system.For more information: www.scimage.com FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 Related Content News | Artificial Intelligence | August 05, 2019 Montefiore Nyack Hospital Uses Aidoc AI to Spot Urgent Conditions Faster Montefiore Nyack Hospital, an acute care hospital in Rockland County, N.Y., announced it is utilizing artificial… read more News | Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) | August 06, 2019 Canon Medical Introduces Encore Orian MR Upgrade Program Canon Medical Systems USA Inc. is helping to provide low-cost patient care solutions for its customers with the launch… read more News | Breast Imaging | August 02, 2019 Volpara to Distribute Screenpoint Medical’s Transpara AI Solution Volpara Solutions and ScreenPoint Medical BV signed an agreement under which Volpara will sell ScreenPoint’s Transpara… read morelast_img read more

Only 108 child migrants given US asylum in 2014

first_img Facebook Comments Just 108of the thousands of unaccompanied minors illegally crossing the U.S. border have been granted asylum in 2014, in a process that often takes more than a year, members of the U.S. Congress heard on Tuesday.Many more children who entered the country are likely to be provided asylum status later this year, and experts say there are several other avenues through which minors can seek to stay in the country. But the process, especially for asylum-seekers, is cumbersome and slow, contributing to what U.S. President Barack Obama labeled a humanitarian crisis on the southwest border.Since October more than 57,000 unaccompanied minors have been apprehended crossing the border, and about three-quarters of them are from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras — Central American countries where youths are fleeing poverty and gang violence.More than 1,500 child migrants who arrived in the United States without papers or parents applied for asylum in fiscal year 2014, according to U.S. Customs and Immigration Services Director Leon Rodríguez.But with immigrants usually making their formal asylum requests more than 10 months after first being apprehended, most of those applicants arrived the previous year.“Of the 167 unaccompanied children asylum cases adjudicated on the merits in [Fiscal Year 2014] through the third quarter, 108 have been granted asylum status,” Rodríguez told a House panel.But in a sign of how the process is mired in legal hurdles and delays, only two of those minors granted asylum were apprehended this year, he said.“For those who do apply, the delays in the process are very significant,” Anwen Hughes, a senior counsel at Human Rights First told AFP. “It is taking over a year for asylum applicants to get an initial hearing before the immigration court in some jurisdictions.”Hughes said that nearly half the child migrants are not represented by a lawyer when they appear in immigration court for the first time.Obama is seeking $3.7 billion in emergency funding aimed at boosting the number of immigration judges, improving care for detained minors and deterring illegal immigration.Congress members are likely to trim his request dramatically.Senate Democrats have introduced a $2.7 billion package, but House Republicans on Tuesday unveiled funding pared down to just $659 million.The House plan would tweak a 2008 law targeting child trafficking that expanded legal rights for Central American child migrants, essentially revoking some of those rights to allow for speedier deportations.The Senate bill would not change the 2008 law, which many Republicans blame for fueling the immigration wave.House Speaker John Boehner said he hopes to pass legislation this week, before lawmakers leave town on a five-week recess, but that would require significant compromise between the two chambers before Friday. Related posts:Central American kids risk everything on road to US Obama calls wave of children across US-Mexican border ‘urgent humanitarian situation’ Fix the immigration crisis at its root US to spend $750 million to attack Central America poverty woeslast_img read more

Mexico fines firefighters others for bear abuse

first_img Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day The 3 1/2-year-old female bear caught this week on the outskirts of Zaragoza, a city in the northern border state of Coahuila, about 30 miles (50 kilometers) southwest of Eagle Pass, Texas, is recovering from mouth and paw wounds suffered after being caught by local people and turned over to volunteer firefighters and civil defense workers.It was the emergency workers who decided to “celebrate” the catch with a photo that someone later distributed on social media sites showing the helpless, bloody-mouthed bear being spread-eagled by ropes tied to each of its paws. One man was pulling its ears.“This is outrageous,” Environment Secretary Juan Elvira Quesada said. “We are going to go after these people with all the force of the law.”Javier de Jesus Rodriguez, the environmental crimes prosecutor for Coahuila state, said the local volunteer fire department and civil defense office were each fined 15,000 pesos ($1,170). He said the fine “for mistreating an animal” was levied collectively, rather than on individuals.“Obviously, it was low, because physically the animal is in good shape,” he said.Rodriguez said the government released the bear back into the surrounding mountains Friday, near where she had been captured in the foothills of the Sierra de la Burra mountain, an area known for its large bear population. “Today, she was in good spirits,” he said. Sponsored Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Associated PressMEXICO CITY (AP) – A photograph showing firefighters and civil defense personnel holding down a young, bound bear spread-eagled and pulling its ears has sparked outrage in Mexico and brought down fines Friday on those involved.Black bears are bouncing back in Mexico after being hunted to near-extinction 40 years ago. And after two years of drought, forest fires and hot weather are causing larger numbers to wander into populated areas, where they face traditions of brutal bear capture and baiting left over from the old days. “The residents were the ones who tied up the bear this way. The civil defense and firefighters showed up and, instead of helping, they joined them … and that’s where they committed their error, by taking pictures with the bear and allowing it to continue to be tied up,” Rodriguez said.Mistreatment of bears is a not-uncommon problem in Mexico, said Manuel Muzquiz, chief inspector of wildlife and parks for Nuevo Leon, another northern border state.“This is a situation that happens on a lot of communal farms. We get reports of people capturing these animals, and because they have no equipment to capture them, they lasso them and tie them up, like they did in this case,” Muzquiz said.Muzquiz, a biologist, said 2012 has been a peak year for bear incursions in Nuevo Leon, which is home to Mexico’s third-largest city, Monterrey. He said about three dozen bear incursions have required official response so far this year.He said the main reason more bears are wandering into urban areas is a series of unusually dry, hot years and forest fires.“There really has been a change in the climate,” he added. “The hot season has become a lot longer.” Comments   Share   Top holiday drink recipescenter_img Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix 3 international destinations to visit in 2019 Rodriguez said the same appears to be true for Coahuila state.“There is a tremendous drought, and for that reason the bears come down out of the mountains, looking for sources of food and water.”Once found well into north-central Mexico, black bears were hunted out of about 80 percent of their original habitat in Mexico in the last half of the 20th century. Declared a protected species in 1994, the bears have rebounded, especially in extreme northern Mexico near the U.S. border, though estimates of their total numbers are still being studied.Fernando Cortes, a veterinarian and bear specialist for the federal Environment Department, said that during field worker, he and others “have seen a lot more bears.”While studies on total bear population levels in Mexico are still being carried out, Cortes says “we have data that suggest the bear populations are recovering.”“In some cities in the north, we have been having bear sightings, something that wasn’t common years ago,” Cortes said.He said another reason for the rising number of bear encounters could be due to the expansion of human settlements into bear habitats.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Top Stories last_img read more

Americas East Coast travel sellers set to pitch New Zealand

first_imgAmerica’s East Coast travel sellers set to pitch New ZealandThe Tuku Iho exhibition in Washington DC has been a backdrop for training that has seen over 500 travel sellers from America’s East Coast schooled up on New Zealand.“The training took place alongside the popular exhibition and leveraged the sense of excitement that it created about New Zealand” says Bjoern Spreitzer General Manager, Americas and Europe.Developed by the New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute, the exhibition showcases around 80 Māori works of art. It includes traditional and contemporary displays of art, live waka building, carving, live ta moko, kapa haka and contemporary performances.“We incorporated elements from the exhibition in into the training including participants attend the exhibition and enjoy a traditional dance lesson from the talented Tuku Iho performance group”The exhibition has seen thousands of people walk through the doors since opening late July and included a haka performance on the steps of the Lincoln memorial attracting a huge crowd with thousands more viewing online.“It’s a fantastic backdrop to work from because there are people are leaving the exhibit interested in coming to New Zealand then visiting a travel agent who we have just trained up on what’s on offer.”“Around 28 million Americans are actively considering New Zealand as a holiday destination, it’s a huge market for us to further tap into that is well supported by growing air capacity.”Around 20 representatives from the New Zealand industry took part in the training and gave the US travel sellers a real sense of the range of experiences on offer and how easy it is to get to and around the country. Training was held in Washington DC, New York, Boston and Philadelphia.Gisela Purcell, International Marketing Manager, Nelson Regional Development Agency said “The event created lots of opportunities for us to capitalise on and I’m so glad that we were able to be involved. I’ve shared the video with some local tourism operators and it’s a great example of the work going on to showcase the region.  There are real advantages in being involved with something bigger than our own marketing would ever allow, which our operators fit into, support and will benefit from it.”Another major training event targeting travel sellers from the West Coast will take place in October.America is New Zealand’s third largest international visitor market with 210,000 Americans holidaying in New Zealand in the past year (YE May), a 32 per cent increase on the previous year.Source = Tourism NZlast_img read more

CBO Fields Winners Losers in Obama Refinance Program

first_img Speaking before a joint session of Congress Thursday evening, “”President Barack Obama””:http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/president-obama unveiled a $447 billion jobs bill – and plans to allow millions of eligible homeowners to refinance their mortgages at current rates, a staggering measure that White House officials hope will lift home prices from squalor and pad the empty pockets of American families. A “”Congressional Budget Office””:http://cbo.gov/ftpdocs/124xx/doc12405/09-07-2011-Large-Scale_Refinancing_Program.pdf (CBO) report walked a strictly nonpartisan line by dispelling the hype and criticism with both good and bad news.[IMAGE]The refinance initiative snagged a few lines toward the end of his prime time address, following an outline heavy with references to infrastructure programs, tax incentives for small businesses, reform aimed at the tax code, and more.But even those few lines shook the industry.Pledging help for “”responsible homeowners,”” Obama confirmed a slew of reports by saying that the White House will “”work with federal housing agencies to help more people refinance their mortgages”” at current interest rates.The president added that the refinance proposal would prop up American families to the tune of $2,000 a year, giving “”a lift to an economy still burdened by the drop in housing prices”” in the process.Despite high-flying rhetoric from either side of the aisle, the CBO released a report clarifying the gains to be had from a major refinance program under the Obama administration. A model used by the federal agency revealed that borrowers could reduce their mortgage payments by approximately $7.4 billion, netting about $2,600 in savings per homeowner.The report also offered up clear winners and probable losers in unmistakable terms.The winners? Mortgage borrowers suddenly able to refinance their loans at current rates and government entities like the GSEs and “”Federal Housing Administration””:http://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/program_offices/housing/fhahistory, which back over $11 trillion in federally insured loans, according to the CBO.[COLUMN_BREAK]That means struggling homeowners could reap a bevy of benefits from mortgage rates, which “”Bankrate.com””:http://www.bankrate.com/ and “”Freddie Mac””:http://www.freddiemac.com/ “”found””:https://themreport.com/articles/plummeting-mortgage-rates-set-new-records-2011-09-08 setting record lows Thursday at 4.35 percent and 4.12 percent, respectively, for benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgages. The rates continue a slump unlikely to stop, as investors fleeing euro zone markets buy up more Treasury debt, spreading yields, against which the industry benchmarks rates, in the process.The losers? Investors in mortgage-backed securities, lenders, servicers, and mortgage insurers could all see their losses eclipse any benefits.A swath of investors with stakes in federally insured mortgage-backed securities ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô financial institutions, overseas investors, state and local governments, among others ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô could see their pockets empty if the bill passes. The CBO fixed losses for non-federal investors at anywhere between $13 billion and $15 billion as more homeowners refinance their government-backed mortgages.Unable to slice and dice the specifics without a look at the legislation, the CBO simply added a rough forecast for lenders, servicers, and other institutions that would lose their existing obligations and warranties with mortgage borrowers that opt to refinance.Market conditions could also derail any attempts by homeowners to refinance their mortgages en masse, the CBO said. REO-laden financial institutions still struggling with low loan volume could lack the wherewithal to meet overwhelming demand.The federal agency further highlighted the role played by servicers and lien holders, which may not make the same concessions as the FHA or GSEs.All these potential stumbling blocks aside, a refinance initiative under the Obama administration would need to jump another hurdle: the “”Federal Housing Finance Agency””:http://www.fhfa.gov/ (FHFA).Writing for the “”_Washington Post_””:http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/can-the-obama-administration-refinance-your-mortgage/2011/08/25/gIQAQs3BeJ_blog.html, columnist Ezra Klein underscored the part played by FHFA acting director Edward DeMarco, a Bush administration holdover who would likely oppose the initiative, along with Republican lawmakers from both chambers, he said.The refinance initiative confirms reports by multiple news outlets that the Obama administration planned to float the idea. It was unclear Thursday how much the White House pulled from a “”widely reported proposal””:https://themreport.com/articles/print-view/nyt-obama-administration-floating-refi-proposal-2011-08-25 by two “”Columbia Business School””:http://www4.gsb.columbia.edu/ professors, who had originally urged officials to adopt a massive expansion in refinancing activity as a way to encourage the economic recovery.In his speech, the president said he planned to deliver the highly anticipated bill to Congress in 10 days. CBO Fields Winners, Losers in Obama Refinance Program Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Bankrate Existing-Home Sales Fannie Mae FHA FHFA Fixed-Rate Mortgage Freddie Mac Home Prices Housing Affordability Investment Investors Jobs Lenders & Servicers Mortgage Rates Mortgage-Backed Securities Processing Refinance Service Providers 2011-09-08 Ryan Schuette Sharecenter_img September 8, 2011 402 Views in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicinglast_img read more