Disabled people will only be protected from online

first_imgDisabled people will only be protected from online abuse when they have “equal and fair” hate crime laws, a leading disabled campaigner has told MPs.Anne Novis, chair of Inclusion London, told the Commons petitions committee that the abuse targeted at disabled people online was “just an echo” of what they experienced on the streets.And she said that the law fails to protect them in both cases.She was speaking to the committee as part of its investigation into online abuse of disabled people, which was launched following a petition set up by former model Katie Price which was signed by more than 220,000 people.Price’s petition called on the government to create a new criminal offence covering online abuse, and to set up a register of offenders.She set up the petition following years of disablist and racist abuse targeted at her teenage son, Harvey, who met members of the committee before the evidence session.But Novis (pictured), who is an adviser on hate crime to the Metropolitan police, the Crown Prosecution Service and British Transport Police, said she did not want to see a separate offence for online abuse or the creation of a register of online offenders.Instead, she said, disabled people just needed “an equal and fair hate crime law”.There is currently no stand-alone offence of disability hate crime, as there is with race hate crime, she said, and disabled people are excluded from offences that protect other groups from the incitement of hatred against them.This means disabled people are not protected from posts on social media that would be breaking the law if they targeted people on the basis of their ethnicity.Novis told the committee: “We desperately need government to take on board that we need an equal and fair hate crime law.”She added: “We know that none of these people will get prosecuted unless they lay hands on us, then they can be arrested for violence and get an aggravated sentence because it’s hate crime.“But apart from that they can be as rude and vitriolic [as they like] and spit in my face, they can target me [for having a] blue badge, they can target me online as much as they like, and they will not get charged with a crime. That is our reality.”She warned that online stalking of disabled people can, and has, led to crimes of serious violence, including torture and even murder.Novis told the committee: “We need that justice and we need you to take it very seriously and understand that people feel they have permission to be horrible to disabled people.”She said many people had “jumped on the bandwagon of welfare reform and the rhetoric around scroungers”.She said: “It’s normal for me to be called a scrounger and assume that I don’t work.“I have an MBE for my efforts but it’s assumed I don’t do anything, that I’m a waste of space, and a burden on society, and the man and the woman on the street, and online, picks up those messages and distorts them.”Novis said she had never had a successful response to reporting online abuse to social media providers.And she said that other countries, such as Germany, were much “firmer” with the owners of social media services like Facebook and Twitter.Price, whose mother also gave evidence about the abuse, had told the committee that the problems faced by her son had grown “worse and worse” over the last few years, with online abuse targeting his skin colour, his size and his impairments.Although two of those responsible were eventually arrested and questioned by police, they never faced court proceedings because there were no appropriate offences to charge them with.She said her son was seen as “an easy target” and she added: “At least I have a voice to speak. People who mock Harvey, they know he hasn’t got a voice back.”Among those who have targeted her son are the comedian Frankie Boyle, who once joked on Channel Four that Harvey was going to rape her.She said: “Frankie Boyle, the disgusting things he said, he said that Harvey was going to rape me.“I complained to Channel Four because they were advertising for the Paralympics and then after the ad break they would have Frankie Boyle on talking about Harvey raping me.”She said that neither Boyle nor Channel Four had apologised.She added: “There’s so many people that have got love for Harvey but then there’s so many people that just find him a good excuse to pick on.”Amy Clarke, a digital assistant for the charity Mencap, also gave evidence to the committee.She said that online abuse “affects people a lot” and she called for stronger laws.She described how she had joined an online Dr Who forum but had to leave it because someone called her “nasty names, such as retard”.She said: “It was aggressive, and I felt very shocked. It made me leave the forum and I reported the person.”She said that police need “to take it seriously. Believing people is really important and not seeing the disability, see the person.”Clarke said there should be “a big button to report abuse online”, which should be “accessible and easy to use”.She said it would also be useful to be able to have a live online chat with a member of staff from the social media provider to make it easier to report abuse.Helen Jones, chair of the committee, said after the evidence session: “What Katie and her family have experienced is extreme and shocking, and other families of people with disabilities can tell similar stories.“Many people suffer online abuse, but the evidence today shows the government must not ignore the particular needs of disabled people in drawing up plans to tackle it.“We will be hearing from more disabled people, their families and other experts as the inquiry continues.”The committee is likely to produce a report on its investigation, and demand a government response, before holding a Commons debate on the issue.last_img read more

SAINTS are delighted to announce that they will do

first_imgSAINTS are delighted to announce that they will donate £10,000 to St Helens Autism Support – thanks to the fans and businesses that got behind the fantastic special edition Autism shirt.The figure was reached through the sales of the Autism Awareness shirt that Saints wore at the Magic Weekend, the auction of the players’ shirts, a golf day and other donations.Response to the shirt has been phenomenal with people from all over the sporting and entertainment world backing the cause.It was also praised in Parliament too via an Early Day Motion, whilst Debbie Abrahams MP, Marie Rimmer MP and Conor McGinn MP lent their support.Tom Jackson from St Helens Autism Support said: “Our charity was created with the twin aims of raising awareness of autism and providing funds for projects within the Borough to support local, impacted people.“Thanks to the supporters, players and staff of St. Helens Rugby League Club, we have progressed on both of these aims.“There is nothing not to like about this ground-breaking initiative and everyone involved, especially the rugby league public, should feel justly proud of their involvement.“The project has been far reaching; schoolchildren to parliamentarians have all played a part.“On behalf of St. Helens Autism Support, the Trustees would like to wholeheartedly thank all of those who have put their hands up to support autism awareness through this campaign.”Dave Hutchinson, General Manager at Saints added: “St.Helens R.F.C. were delighted to help with raising awareness of autism and in particular to personally assist with the fundraising for St Helens Autism Support.“Fans, staff and players all got behind a social media campaign to help drive the specifically designed jersey to help raise money for the SaS.“We had celebs from the NRL, Premier League football, world of music and acting all throw their weight behind it. We estimated that well in excess of 11 million people were exposed to the shirt.“We also had some fantastic messages from people all over the country, thanking us for getting involved and even attracted a family of Leicester City fans who came up to buy shirts and watch a game.“The club will continue to support SaS and thank everyone for getting involved to help make a difference.“A massive thank you to all the fans who made this donation possible.”last_img read more

CFPUA representatives to speak to House committee Thursday

first_imgWILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Representatives from CFPUA are speaking to House Committee Thursday.Mike Brown, Chairman of the Board, and Frank Styers, Chief Operating Officer, will give a presentation to the House Select Committee on North Carolina River Quality in Raleigh. WWAY will be there and have updates starting on WWAY NEWS at Noon.- Advertisement – Brown and Styers are scheduled to present their plan to potentially implement funding provided by the General Assembly in HB 56 Amend Environmental Laws. Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed that measure last week.The meeting’s agenda released today shows the session will include presentations from state agencies, local utilities and university researchers.Rep. Ted Davis (R-New Hanover) is the senior chair for the committee. Other members include Rep. Holly Grange (R-New Hanover), Rep. Frank Iler (R-Brunswick) and Rep. William Brisson (D-Bladen).Related Article: Trump, Japan’s Abe at odds over North Korean missile tests“The agenda for our initial meeting continues the process of obtaining information necessary to address numerous questions from citizens concerning the quality of their drinking water,” Davis said in a news release. “This committee will continue to meet so that additional legislation can hopefully be recommended for the House to act upon and successfully address as many concerns as possible of our constituents throughout the state.”Every Monday and Friday, CFPUA staff reads the meter at the free water station in Ogden Park to monitor how much water is being withdrawn from the station. Monday’s reading showed that a total of 14,958 gallons have been withdrawn since July 18, the day CFPUA installed the meter. The running average is 217 gallons per day.last_img read more

Local paddleboarder looks to take another top Surf to Sound Challenge title

first_imgWRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WWAY) — Wrightsville Beach will be packed this weekend as the Surf to Sound Challenge kicks off.The 6.5 mile competition gives amateur stand-up paddlers the chance to compete with internationally ranked professionals.- Advertisement – The race starts with paddlers beginning in the ocean, moving over to Masonboro Inlet, and then racing in the channel. The finish line will be the Blockade Runner Beach Resort.Two professional paddlers were at the resort Friday holding clinics including Wilmington native April Zilg. She taught competitors how to enter and exit the ocean quickly and safely on their paddle boards, then gave people advice on their techniques.“It’s unique in that it utilizes the ocean as well as the sound side,” professional paddleboarder April Zilg said. “A lot of races they’re very flat, they’re very boring, this race can be very very exciting depending on the ocean swells. So that and the community.”Related Article: Locals, UNCW team try to rescue stranded whale on Masonboro IslandIt’s a great event for families to enjoy outside and there’s even contests for kids!This weekend will mark the seventh year for the state’s Surf to Sound Challenge.last_img read more

When will Ploof Road in Leland be open

first_imgLELAND, NC (Star News) — Though Ploof Road construction work has dragged on for months, Shane Lippard with Right Angle Engineering feels optimistic that the road could potentially open next week.Lippard said construction crews are getting to the “tail end” of the developer-driven project, which aims to connect Tradeway Drive, originally called Ploof Road Extension, to Ploof Road. It will create a connection between the planned Leland Shopping Center and the existing Walmart and Ocean Gate Plaza shopping center, both of which are off U.S. 17.- Advertisement – Crews recently finished adding an extra left turn lane from U.S. 17 onto Ploof Road, and are currently working to get the old Ploof Road widened, Lippard said.Lippard said the newly constructed road system is projected to open May 4, though they may still have some “loose ends” to tie up after it’s officially open to drivers.Click here to read more on Star News Online.last_img read more

Shots fired at car in Columbus County

first_imgCOLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The Columbus County Sheriff’s Office is investigating after someone fired several shots at a couple in their vehicle.It happened Monday just after 5:00 a.m. in Tabor City.- Advertisement – Investigators say a couple saw a man standing on Peacock Road, in the area of Clyde Norris Road.After they drove past the man, they heard gunshots hitting their vehicle.The sheriff’s office says no one got hurt … but the vehicle was struck multiple times.last_img read more

Museum of Coastal Carolina and Ingram Planetarium summer schedule

first_img Dome Theater Shows11:00 Monday – Thursday & Saturday: Kaluoka’hina: The Enchanted ReefBack by popular demand. Great for families!12:00 Monday – Thursday & Saturday: NEW Apollo 11: Man’s First Step on the MoonSpecial showing July 20 at 7 pm.1:00 Monday – Saturday: Earth, Moon and SunA Kid Favorite2:00 Monday – Saturday: NEW The Sun – Our Living StarInvestigate the marvel that is our home star, the Sun3:00 Monday – Saturday: Tales of the Maya SkiesExplore the rich history behind Mayan astronomy4:00 Monday – Saturday: The Sky TonightExplore Stargazing!Evening Laser Music ShowsMonday7:00 Beatles8:00 Pink Floyd: The Wall*Tuesday7:00 80’s Night8:00 Led ZeppelinRelated Article: One hospitalized after being struck by kite in Sunset BeachThursday7:00 La Electronica Laser8:00 Metallica*Saturday7:00 Michael Jackson (Excludes July 20)8:00 Pink Floyd: Dark Side of the Moon* Not recommended for kidsStars at Sunset (7 pm)June 7, July 5, August 2Explore what’s up in the Carolina sky and learn about exciting events in space exploration. Telescope viewings will be held after, weather permitting.Budding Scientist Mini LabsThursdays – 12:15 and 2:15 pmExplore hands-on science at Ingram Planetarium in our Paul Dennis Science Hall with our experienced educators.Ingram Planetarium is located at 7625 High Market Street in Sunset Beach, NC. Admission is free for Planetarium members, dual Planetarium/Museum members, active military and disabled veterans with valid military ID. Non-member per-show admission (including NC sales tax) is $9.50 for adults, $8.50 for seniors (62+), $7.50 for children (3-12), and free for age 2 and under. For more information, call 910-575-0033, visit www.museumplanetarium.org, or like us on Facebook.com/IngramPlanetarium. (Photo: Ingram Planetarium) SUNSET BEACH, NC (WWAY) — Ingram Planetarium’s summer season begins on May 24 and runs through September 2. During that time, the planetarium will be open from 10:30 am – 5 pm Monday through Thursday, Fridays from 12:30 – 5 pm and Saturdays 10:30 am – 5 pm. For scheduled night programs, doors will reopen at 6:30 pm.Visit our immersive theater and science hall to experience the night sky and the sciences or catch a sensory-rich laser show after dark!- Advertisement – last_img read more

Moviment Graffitti appeals approved Burmarrad ODZ fuel station

first_imgIn a statement on Tuesday, Moviment Graffitti explained its reasoning behind the appeal, saying that the PA Board has shown disregard for the policies regulating development in Malta.Citing the 2015 Fuel Service Station Policy, Moviment Graffitti said that it “clearly specifies that fuel stations are not to be relocated on good agricultural land”. Further Moviment Graffitti pointed out that while the policy states that fuel stations shall not have footprint which exceeds 3,000m², the approved fuel station’s size is 3,700m².The NGO listed a number of grounds on which it is appealing the decision.WhatsApp <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> SharePrintcenter_img Moviment Graffitti filed an appeal in front of the Environment and Planning Review Tribunal against the Planning Authority’s decision to approve a fuel station on land designated as out-of-development zone.The Planning Authority board approved the application in question in April, where a fuel pump will be relocated on 3,700m² agricultural land. In addition to the fuel station, the development also includes a number of retail facilities.last_img read more

Airtel Africa Partners with MicroEnsure for Mobile Micro Insurance

first_imgAdvertisement Bharti Airtel, announced the establishment of a strategic partnership with MicroEnsure, the world’s leading provider of mass-market insurance products, to provide insurance services to Airtel customers in Africa.Mobile network operators in Africa have identified the growing demand for financial services, and micro insurance – a form of insurance designed specifically for low-and-middle income consumers – is no exception.  According to a study published by Making Finance Work for Africa, from 2010 to 2012 micro insurance grew more than 200% on the continent.  Even so, fewer than 20 million Africans outside South Africa have any form of micro insurance, less than 5% of the potential 400 million customers in sub-Saharan Africa.With this announcement, Airtel is the first mobile network operator in Africa to position insurance as a strategic portfolio product in partnership with a global micro insurance specialist. – Advertisement – [related-posts]The range of Airtel-branded insurance products will include life, accident, health, agriculture, and other forms of cover. Airtel will bring the products to market and promote the service with its local brand, marketing and distribution infrastructure.  MicroEnsure will design and implement products, provide technology, facilitate local and international underwriting support, and perform administration and customer service.  The parties intend to expand services to several African markets over the next year.Andre Beyers, Chief Marketing Officer for Airtel Africa, said during the partnership announcement, “In many of our markets, less than 5% of our customers have any formal insurance products and there is demand for insurance offerings that are simple, affordable and reliable.  Our partnership with MicroEnsure will deepen our value added services to our customers and provide access to insurance.”Peter Gross, Regional Director of Africa for MicroEnsure, concurred.  “With Airtel’s initiative to prioritize insurance in its product portfolio, insurance in Africa will change forever. The peace of mind that Airtel subscribers will have through insurance will support Airtel’s aspiration to be the most loved brand in Africa.”last_img read more

SouthAfricans to get free WiFi in designated areas

first_imgAdvertisement South Africa is going to endeavour to provide the nation with better broadband connectivity and free Wi-Fi in designated areas.This was revealed by President Jacob Zuma as he unveiled the African National Congress’s 2014 election manifesto in Nelspruit, South Africa over the weekend.The president highlighted that the government would invest heavily in broadband.“We will invest in a comprehensive plan to expand broadband access throughout the country and substantially reduce the cost of communication,” he said. – Advertisement – The party would further expand the current national broadband network, and once again highlighted his government’s plan to have most of the nation fully connected to the internet by 2020.“We aim to connect all schools, public health and other government facilities through broadband by 2020, and at least 90% of our communities should have substantial and superfast broadband capacity by 2020″.Concerning the free national Wi-Fi, Zuma said that emerging entrepreneurs would be roped in to make it reality. Government will support and develop free-WiFi areas in cities, towns and rural areas. The local electronics sector and emerging entrepreneurs will be stimulated as part of our efforts to support the manufacturing industry.The ruling party has also promised to focus on clean energy sources. “Both traditional and green energy will be expanded to ensure a platform for growth and social inclusion, including the use of nuclear power for energy generation in a safe and environmentally sustainable manner.“Solar and wind power will feed into the electricity grid to increase our generation capacity and promote environmental sustainability. Further hydro-electric energy will be secured domestically and regionally for the national grid.” he added.Source: www.itnewsafrica.comlast_img read more