Category: ukusiftf

Skills shortages as CRB crisis deepens

first_img Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article Skills shortages as CRB crisis deepensOn 3 Sep 2002 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos. Employers in the health and charity sectors are losing out on new staffafter having to wait for up to six months to receive clearance for recruitsfrom the crisis-hit Criminal Records Bureau (CRB). Tracy Myhill, president of the Association of Healthcare Human Resource Management,said some members were reporting delays of between 12 weeks and six months forthe bureau to complete checks on new staff who will be working with children. “This has led to delays in appointments at a time when we cannot affordthem,” she said. Myhill is concerned the situation could get worse after the Governmentordered the CRB to ensure all school staff are cleared to work with children intime for the start of the autumn term following the Soham tragedy. The Home Office has redeployed 100 extra staff to cope with demand, but theCRB is struggling to cope with a backlog of 195,000 applications. Clare Smith, HR director of charity Leonard Cheshire, which employs 7,500people and provides care staff for the disabled, said her organisation iscurrently losing around 25 per cent of its new recruits who are findingalternative jobs because of the processing delays. The crisis is set to deepen over the coming months because the new NationalCare Standards mean existing staff will also have to be checked by April 2003. “Checks on existing staff will lead to a million new applications fromthe care sector alone,” said Smith. A spokesperson for the Home Office said the CRB had implemented a recoveryplan and was improving response times, although no date had been set forreaching the original target response rate of completing checks in three weeks.Plans to offer all employers basic checks on staff have been postponedindefinitely because of the huge backlog of applications. By Ross Wigham The CRB’s roleThe Criminal Records Bureau opened inApril 2002 to check the criminal records of staff working with children orvulnerable adults.It took over responsibility for the service from the police.It offers three types of disclosure:Standard: For staff working with children or vulnerableadults. This gives details of all convictions, including those that are spentas well as cautions and reprimandsEnhanced: Similar to standard but includes policeintelligence and information on suspected or alleged criminal activityBasic: All staff can be asked by employers to obtain acertificate of basic disclosure which will show all unspent convictions(postponed indefinitely)last_img read more

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Gail’s Bakery eyes sites outside of London

first_imgGail’s Artisan Bakery has revealed plans to expand out of the capital, but has turned down opportunities to go into travel locations.Tom Molnar, joint founder of Gail’s, told British Baker he had ambitions to open sites within 50 miles of London, in places such as Oxford, Cambridge, St Albans or Guildford.Molnar said: “We are talking about the greater metro area – that’s all the scope I have really thought about seriously. If I were to go any further, I would have to think about moving everything over.”When asked about travel locations, Molnar said he would rather stick to what he refers to as “neighbourhood” locations.He explained: “I think the whole travel location thing is changing, so it may be more interesting to us later, because they are becoming places rather than just through-places, but until they become that, I like neighbourhoods. I’ve said ‘no’ to a lot of them.”Gail’s now has 19 sites throughout the capital, and will open a 20th in Abbeville Road, Clapham, in the near future.The company has also set up a delivery service to provide catering for business meetings in London.last_img read more

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The Disco Biscuits Announce Great Openers For Three-Night Philadelphia Run

first_imgAfter an incredible New Year’s run down at The Tabernacle in Atlanta, GA, The Disco Biscuits are now setting their sights on a triumphant return to their hometown of Philadelphia from February 2nd-4th. There’s never any shortage of fun when the Biscuits hit their hometown, as the energy in the room is always palpable whenever the band hits the stage. The group will return to The Fillmore Philadelphia for the run, and today has announced stellar supporting acts for each night of the three-night stand.Watch The Disco Biscuits’ Full Performance On Night Two Of NYE Run [Pro-Shot]Joining the Biscuits will be up and coming jam band Aqueous on February 2nd. The group is coming off a stellar 2016, having released two EPs and recently rang in the New Year with Twiddle. The Buffalo-based, high-energy band is poised bring it in 2017, and will prove to the Bisco faithful why they are the real deal.On February 3rd, the fiery Philly funk extravaganza that is Swift Technique will get things heated up at The Fillmore nice and early. The band has supported everybody from the Wu-Tang Clan to The Meters, and Turkuaz to The Motet, and more for a reason. They bring that straight up F-U-N-K right to your trunk.And on February 4th, what else needs to be said about long-time friend and Electron cohort Tom Hamilton and his American Babies that hasn’t been said already? The Joe Russo’s Almost Dead guitarist is one of the busiest musician’s in the scene, between that project, Billy & The Kids (with Aron Magner), playing with Bob Weir, and….do we really need to keep going? Tom Hamilton’s American Babies is one of the best original projects going in the scene, hands down.Whenever the Disco Biscuits ascend onto Philly, the shows tend to be of epic proportions, and these shows are sure to be no different. With old friends and new, expect some exciting collaborations to punctuate an awesome three night hometown run. Tickets for all three shows are currently on-sale and can be purchased here. For additional show information and updates, check out the Facebook Event page.last_img read more

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Java in the genes

first_imgAn international research team has found six new genes underlying our coffee-slurping ways.The work, led by Marilyn Cornelis, a research associate at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, found a total of eight genes, two of which had been identified in prior work by Cornelis and others. Two of the new genes were related to metabolism of caffeine and two were related to its psychoactive effects.The two remaining genes are related to lipid and glucose metabolism, but their role in coffee consumption is unclear. They present a possible avenue of investigation, Cornelis said.The discoveries provide insight on why caffeine affects people differently, and how these effects influence coffee-drinking behavior, Cornelis said. One person, for example, may feel energized on a daily cup of coffee, while another might need four cups to feel the same effect. If the one-cup-a-day person consumes four cups, Cornelis said, he or she might feel jittery or experience digestive issues, discouraging that level of consumption going forward.The new genes explain about 1.3 percent of our coffee-drinking behavior, which is about the same as that reported for other habitual behaviors, such as smoking and alcohol consumption. Photo by Julius Schorzman/Creative CommonsThough there has been disagreement over coffee’s health effects in the past, Cornelis said evidence of its benefits has been mounting. In fact, Cornelis herself — who never liked coffee — has been persuaded to try to cultivate the habit.“I’m not a coffee drinker; I hate the taste of it,” Cornelis said. “If there were more people like me in the study we wouldn’t have found those genes.”The new genes explain about 1.3 percent of our coffee-drinking behavior, Cornelis said. Though that may seem like a small amount, it is about the same as that reported for other habitual behaviors, such as smoking and alcohol consumption, she said.Culture is a probably sizable influence, researchers said, but there’s also a strong chance that additional genes remain to be found, perhaps many more. The findings were published Tuesday in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.The work was conducted by the international Coffee and Caffeine Genetics Consortium, which was launched two years ago, Cornelis said, by investigators who had published parallel work on caffeine-related genes. The researchers joined forces and recruited additional investigators, with each team contributing DNA samples and data sets, including surveys of the coffee-drinking habits of 120,000 people of European and African-American ancestry.The analysis involved searching for consumption patterns and single “letter” changes in the genetic code called single-nucleotide polymorphisms, or SNPs. The study’s senior author, Daniel Chasman, a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital, said in a statement that the work is an example of how genetics can influence habitual behaviors.The genes found so far might represent only the tip of the iceberg on coffee consumption, Cornelis said. Not only may there be more genes involved in caffeine metabolism, coffee is rich in active compounds in addition to caffeine, some of which may also have physiological effects.“The next question is who is benefiting most from coffee,” Cornelis said. “If, for example, caffeine is protective, individuals might have very similar physiological exposure to caffeine, once you balance the metabolism. But if coffee has other potentially protective constituents, those levels are going to be higher if you consume more cups, so they might actually be benefitting from non-caffeine components of coffee. So it’s a little bit complex.”last_img read more

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3 Ways to Build Your IT Skills as Data Centers Modernize

first_imgTechnology marches on. And so must we.As IT professionals, we need to be agile: constantly transforming skills to adapt, if not anticipating, the constantly changing business and technology landscape.Today, that means you need to learn new skills along with data center infrastructure transformation and digital transformation of businesses.  These modernization trends are clear:Instead of integrating separate compute, storage and network components themselves, more and more IT teams are buying pre-engineered/pre-manufactured converged systems.Instead of relying on traditional brick-and-motor business models (run on traditional CRM, ERP and financial applications), more businesses are turning to service-oriented business models run on social, mobile and big data applications.This white paper from the Enterprise Management Associates analyst group outlines IT/business transformation trends and includes in-depth interviews with two enterprises who successfully transformed.Here are three important use cases that you need to keep in mind as you tune up your skills to ride this wave along with IT and business.Use Case 1: Must Modernize Data Center to Support Core Business AppsProblem: Infrastructure supporting core business applications (SAP, Oracle, Microsoft, vertical industry-specific suites) is aging.  The data center needs a refresh and more capacity, but space, support staff and budget for OPEX are limited.Solution: Converged infrastructure systems, pre-engineered and manufactured with the latest technologies (storage arrays, compute blades, network and hybrid cloud for “anything as a service”) give you the latest technologies. This delivers the performance, headroom and resiliency that mission critical applications require, while requiring less hand-holding (i.e., OPEX) and a smaller footprint.Skill Transformation: Less effort to “keep the lights on” frees you to become more consultative with customers and more agile, so you can upgrade and deploy new services faster – be recognized for it.Use Case 2: Must Scale-out the Data Center for Digital Business TransformationProblem: Need to provide infrastructure and environments for “third platform applications”  that deliver revenue-generating services via web, social media and mobile devices.Solution: Rackscale hyper-converged systems that start small, scale-out massively, and support native hybrid cloud platforms for rapid application development and deployment.Skill Transformation: Master the art of  the software-defined data center, so you’re not left behind the next phase on infrastructure evolution and are recognized for helping drive your business to its next reincarnation.Use Case 3: Must Assure Infrastructure Meets Stringent Operating Level and Security ObjectivesProblem: Revenue, customer satisfaction and loyalty and IT’s reputation depend on round-the-clock application availability and no service degradations. Traditional siloed IT processes are too slow when new capacity needs to be reallocated, when security bugs strike without warning and when you need to upgrade firmware to address a technical issue.Solution: Converged infrastructure management tools with cross-silo intelligence, automation and visualization.Skill Transformation: Learn how to manage, support and sustain compute, storage and network resources as a single system and multiple systems as a unified pool of resources. This will make you a more valuable player who is collaborative across silos, proactive and solves problems faster.last_img read more

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This Week’s Picks! Idina Menzel, Andrew Rannells & More

first_img Sing the Hits with Liz (and Beth) Available in stores and online August 18 Don’t lie—we know you sing “Here I Go” from If/Then in the shower every morning. Now you can accompany yourself on the piano, guitar or recorder (um, actually we’re not sure how that last one is possible), thanks to this handy dandy If/Then songbook, featuring all the hits from the musical! (Idina Menzel not included.) Hey you. Yeah, you, the one who insists nothing happens on Broadway in August. Well, you’d better cancel that beach vacation because we’re about to prove you wrong. This week, there’s a new transgender rock goddess from communist East Berlin in town, two screen stars and a fashion maven making their Broadway debuts, a Mormon singing a capella (aca-scuse me?) and tons more. Check out our top picks! Spend the Night with a Mormon August 18 & 25 at 54 Below Ben Platt is one talented guy: He’s the star of Broadway’s The Book of Mormon, he made the ladies swoon with his a capella stylings in Pitch Perfect, and he’ll be back to get aca-awesome once more in the movie’s sequel. Now, you can hear him sing everything from soul to pop to R&B at NYC hotspot 54 Below—oh, and he’ll share stories about his “family of singing Jews,” too. Click for tickets! Hit the Books with Santino & Mario  August 18 at The Triad, Stage 72 What’s better than reading a celebrity’s autobiography? Having actually celebrities read it for you! For your listening pleasure, Broadway faves Mario Cantone, Santino Fontana, Gina Gershon and more will perform selections from a variety of hilarious celeb autobiographies—that are never, ever written by ghostwriters. Click for tickets! Travel Back to 1982 Begins performances August 18 at the Cort Theatre Kenneth Lonergan’s iconic slacker play This Is Our Youth is back on Broadway, but the show’s young stars are anything but slackers. Screen stars Michael Cera and Keiran Culkin and fashion wunderkind Tavi Gevinson are all making their Broadway debuts in the new production, directed by Anna D. Shapiro (August: Osage County). No, we can’t spot you the cash for tickets, you’ll have to ask your parents. Click for tickets! Bow Down to Andrew Rannells Beginning August 20 at the Belasco Theatre Ladies and gentlemen…Andrew Rannells is stepping into the glittery gold boots of Hedwig and the Angry Inch star Neil Patrick Harris! He’s played the role before in a regional production, and we know he does a killer “Origin of Love,” but will he nail Hedwig’s infamous “carwash”? Guess we’ll have to see the show and check out his lap-dancing skills firsthand. Click for tickets! View Commentslast_img read more

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African delegation

first_imgBy Brad HaireUniversity of GeorgiaRepresentatives of nine African countries toured University of Georgia research facilities and commercial farms April 26-29. They wanted to learn more about Georgia agriculture and investigate potential partnerships in the state.The delegation included the minister of agriculture from Angola and Washington-based ambassadors from Senegal, Tanzania, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Mauritius and Mozambique. Tim Williams, a researcher with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, organized the tour.”There was intense interest to come and see what is happening in Georgia,” said Williams, who also coordinates the Peanut Collaborative Research Support Program at UGA.Poverty is a problem for many of these countries, he said. For some, as much as 95 percent of the population survives solely on 1 to 2 acres of land. Many live on $2 per day, he said.”You would have to go back to the days of sharecropping in the United States to get an idea of how farming is done in some of these countries,” Williams said.Agricultural tourThe delegation toured an egg processing operation in Jasper County and a broiler facility in Oglethorpe County in northeast Georgia.They visited a UGA broiler microprocessing facility in Athens, Ga. It matches industry standards and provides a place for students to learn all areas of poultry processing. They work to develop new poultry food products there, too.”The delegation wished to see and hear about poultry in Georgia because they knew it was important in the state and that it was an efficient and wholesome protein source that might help the food and nutrition situation in their countries,” said Mike Lacy, head of the CAES poultry science department.The delegation went to the UGA campus in Griffin, Ga., to learn about food science research and about Peanut CRSP projects to combat aflatoxin, a group of potentially deadly toxins produced by fungi. It can appear in peanuts, corn and other crops.”Aflatoxin exposure is a serious problem for many developing countries,” Williams said.In south Georgia, the delegation toured new climate-controlled peanut warehouses in Wilcox County. And on the UGA campus in Tifton, Ga., they learned how peanuts, cotton and vegetables are grown and marketed in Georgia.Productive relationsMozambique Ambassador Armando Panguene wants to develop relationships between his country and learning institutions across the United States. He hopes this will help his country grow. About 80 percent of the population there works on farms.Mozambique farmers, he said, need to learn how to increase their production. But this will depend on developing new markets. “The markets for our production are very limited,” he said.Mozambique has traditionally been linked to Europe, Panguene said. “But now the U.S. is a new market we want to explore.””If we can work and trade with these countries and help them develop,” Williams said, “it would benefit all by making these countries less dependent on food assistance. … And there is much we can learn from them.”UGA, the Partnership to Cut Hunger and Poverty in Africa and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service sponsored the diplomats’ visit.last_img read more

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Chilean Lieutenant Colonel Joins Military Exercise at Fort Bragg

first_imgSince 2003, the Armed Forces of the two countries have participated in PANAMAX, sponsored by the U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM). This exercise involves the operational deployment of forces to protect the Panama Canal and the Central American region. Originally proposed by Chile, PANAMAX was launched as the result of coordinated efforts between Chile, Panama, and the United States, and has grown significantly since it began. Chilean Army Lieutenant Colonel Carlos Parra Meier recently took part in the multi-national Combined Joint Operational Access Exercise 15-01 (CJOAX 15-01), a training operation designed to enhance co-operation and inter-operability among its participants. “Chile and the United States are creating a common vision of security issues in the hemisphere, and this exercise is part of that vision,” said Miguel Navarro, a researcher at the National Academy of Political and Strategic Studies (ANEPE) of Chile. “It’s important for Chile to have interoperability with NATO forces in order to have a more active participation in international operations.” A large airborne operation The exercise, held April 10-21, was the largest U.S.-U.K. bilateral airborne training operation at Fort Bragg in the past 20 years; it featured Paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division’s (82 ABN DIV) – 2nd Brigade Combat Team and about 900 Paratroopers from the United Kingdom’s 3rd Battalion, The Parachute Regiment, 16 Air Assault Brigade. “This Chilean participation in a major military exercise on U.S. soil summarizes all the work of collaboration and cooperation among the two nations. Today, more than ever, strengthening ties and gaining experiences are as vital for a country as it is to have well-trained Army officers in multiple disciplines.” By Dialogo July 02, 2015 Excellent work, this should be the army’s function during peacetime. Saving the new generations and making the future more human. Marines from the 2nd Marine Division at nearby Camp Lejeune, meanwhile, participated in the exercise April 12-17. “More than 2,100 American and British paratroopers jumped into Fort Bragg, North Carolina, on April 13 for the start of a massive exercise,” the fort’s press office reported. They leaped from American C-17s and C-130s as well as Royal Air Force aircraft before moving to seize an airfield, evacuating non-combatants, and executing offensive and defensive operations. Exercises promote inter-operability The CJOAX 15-01 began with a warning and strategic deployment from the nearby Pope Field Air Force base in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Participating Troops performed a Forcible Entry Joint Operation that night, followed by seven days of tactical exercises. Lt. Col. Parra joined in the airborne assault on April 13, and thereafter served in the command post of the Task Force on the Future Operations Department, deployed by the 82 ABN DIV – 2nd Brigade Combat Team and Regiment 3, where he worked with British and U.S. officers. In addition to general training, the exercises also promoted inter-operability; they gave participants the opportunity to learn about each others’ equipment, tactics, and standard operating procedures, according to Lt. Col. Mike Shervington, commander of 3 Para, a Global Response Force U.S./ Military unit, the Army Times reported. The Chilean Army reported that it “continues to position itself with an international presence, in order to enhance its combat capability and working staff for the benefit of multinational interoperability.” In 2014, Military personnel and integrated staff members from Brazil, Belize, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, France, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, and the United States participated in PANAMAX, which also featured cooperation from the United Nations and Conference of Central American Armies. The exercise at Fort Bragg is not the first time Chile and the United States have cooperated on a Military exercise. These exercises were “quite beneficial, in this case not only to Lt. Col. Parra, who won a real international experience in his field,” but also to Chile in general, said David Rozowski, a security analyst and CEO of Citizen Security Foundation in Chile. Also, Cadets from the Chilean Military School participated in the 49th annual Sandhurst Military Skills Competition at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in April. The Chilean team won fifth place overall in the competition. Chile and U.S. also cooperate in PANAMAXlast_img read more

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A Look Back at the Brutal Winter of 2015

first_imgNow, let’s talk about the dreaded snow. For the season, the weather service measured 56.6 inches of snow at MacArthur Airport, more than double the historic seasonal average of 24.8 inches. With our luck this year, that number may increase. The weather service’s “snowfall season” runs from November through April. The most recent storm to hit LI dumped upwards of 8 inches on the Island, a reminder that although spring is only days away, anything is possible. Here’s the good news: National Weather Service forecast through Wednesday. (Photo credit: National Weather Service)You’re not hallucinating, folks. The reprieve we’ve all been waiting for is upon us. Let’s just hope it stays that way. Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York We’re not quite counting our chickens yet, Long Island, but it appears the worst may be behind us—at least we can only hope it is. If Thursday’s winter storm was indeed Old Man Winter’s last hurrah then we’ll gladly put away those over-utilized shovels and box up the salt and sand—all the while letting out a triumphant cheer, the likes of which we haven’t uttered in what seems like ages. As we look ahead to next week’s glorious forecast—sunny skies and temperatures in the 40s (!!) for most of the week—we do so with a bit of trepidation, knowing full well that at any moment Mother Nature can shatter all of our hopes and dreams and unleash copious amounts of snow and brutally cold temperatures on us—something we’ve unfortunately become accustomed to in recent weeks. Sure, this hellish winter may not officially be over, but we feel like it’s our duty to conduct a sort-of post-mortem on Winter 2015. Long Islanders don’t need statistics to back up their point that this winter has been especially unbearable, but we’ll provide some talking points anyway. According to National Weather Service’s Upton office, February was the coldest month on record for Long Island (temperature readings are taken at Long Island MacArthur Airport), going back to 1984, when the agency officially began to record data. The average temperature in February was a skin-piercing 21.6 degrees. February’s stunning temperatures are even more mind blowing when you consider temperature readings at Central Park, where records date back to 1869. Central Park posted an average daily temperature of 23.9, making it the third coldest February over the 146-year period that records have been kept, and the ninth coldest month overall. The average temperature of 24.6 captured at John F. Kennedy International Airport (records date back to 1948) made it the coldest February on record, and second coldest month overall. last_img read more

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Filene: Troubling drift in CU corporate governance

first_img 12SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by: Keith LeggettIn 2010, the Filene Institute released an interesting study on corporate governance at U.S. and Canadian credit unions.The report found that there “is a troubling drift away from truly cooperative and democratic governance.”The report argued that there is a failure by credit union members, who own the assets, to participate in running their credit unions. It is management that drives the change process at credit unions.This decline in member involvement has arisen at the same time as the common bond has been diluted. The liberalization of the common bond has fueled credit union membership and asset size growth requiring professional managers.For example, the study found that less than 1 percent of U.S. credit union members attended the annual general meeting.The study also found unsurprisingly that for the vast majority of credit unions the number of candidates for the board of directors is the same as the number of vacancies. The authors concluded that “competition for board positions … is not intense… and once one is nominated, achieving a position on the board is a formality.” continue reading »last_img read more

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