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School superintendent says unbelievable mistake to give kids graphic sex guide

first_imgCRANBROOK, B.C. — The manager of a public health nurse says she is sorry for mistakenly giving a class of British Columbia students a sex-education guide that contained graphic images, including a picture of bondage between cartoon animals.Roger Parsonage, executive director of clinical operations for the East Kootenay region served by the Interior Health Authority, says he’s not sure why the adult booklet was distributed to students in Grades 6 and 7 after a session on sexual health.Parsonage says the nurse was teaching at Erickson Elementary School in Creston, B.C., with a student nurse when the children were given the explicit booklet containing information about sexually transmitted diseases and drug use during sex.He says material used for future classes will be reviewed by Interior Health and the school district before it’s provided to students.Parsonage says he is not sure why the booklet was brought to the school in the first place but any material that is used in future classes will be reviewed in advance by Interior Health and the school district.He says third-party material is used to teach sexual health but it must be appropriate for school-aged children.“All of us are sorry that this happened,” Parsonage says. “And we’ve apologized to the parents as well as to the school, the principal and the school district. This was a mistake that shouldn’t have occurred and we’ll take steps to ensure it won’t happen again.”Christine Perkins, superintendent of the Kootenay Lake School District, says the “unfortunate, unbelievable mistake” last week had parents complaining at a public board meeting.She says parents were shocked when children brought home the booklet, produced by a Toronto group called CATIE — the Canadian Aids Treatment Information Exchange.“I was shocked when I looked at it,” she says, adding the booklet clearly states it’s for mature audiences. “I think of myself as fairly open minded and liberal and I was appalled,” she says.Perkins says a school psychologist phoned all the parents and offered counselling at the school this week or group counselling next week but no one has taken up the offer so far.“We have increased and improved our vetting of anything that comes through the schools so we’re hyper vigilant now after this happened. It was just way too graphic and way too adult for Grade 6 and 7 students and that’s just the bottom line.” The Canadian Presslast_img read more

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Bombardier expected to double down on CSeries sales drive in China

first_imgMONTREAL – Bombardier Inc. is expected to double down on its efforts to snag a CSeries order from China after the U.S. announced hefty duties that threaten to shut it out of the large American market.“The CSeries business is probably not viable longer term without access to the U.S. market, but Bombardier may be able to find enough international customers to still ramp up production in the next few years,” says analyst Cameron Doerksen of National Bank Financial.He said uncertainty over the overbudget aircraft remains the biggest investor concern, but anxiety can be alleviated by a new order from a large airline outside the U.S.Bombardier’s (TSX:BBD.B) shares lost more than seven per cent to close at $2.10 Wednesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange as investors weighed the prospect of a 220 per cent duty on U.S. sales of its flagship CSeries passenger jets and the European merger of two railway rivals.Analysts say the U.S. Department of Commerce’s preliminary duty decision, which was much harsher than expected, raises questions about the future of a key order for up to 125 CS100 jets by Delta Air Lines.The department ruled in favour of Boeing, which alleged that Bombardier used unfair government subsidies to sell aircraft at artificially low prices. U.S.-based Delta Air Lines has argued that Boeing doesn’t even make the 100-seat planes it needs.Bombardier’s last CSeries order for two aircraft came in December but the company has suggested it was confident of signing new deals by year-end.The Montreal-based company has been targeting buyers in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. A published report suggested talks with Chinese airlines could lead to a deal that could be announced when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is on a state visit to the country.Bombardier didn’t respond to requests for comment about the viability of the CSeries but late Tuesday called the size of the proposed duty “absurd.”Doerksen doesn’t expect any U.S. airline will order the CSeries until the Boeing challenge is resolved. A final department ruling is expected in December, followed by a decision by the U.S. International Trade Commission on alleged injury to Boeing in February. Still, appeals could keep the CSeries out of the American market for years.That would put pressure on Bombardier since the U.S. accounts for about 26 per cent of global sales for this size of plane. That still leaves three quarters of the world open to the CSeries, said Addison Schonland of aviation consultant AirInsight.“I think the CSeries goes on,” he said in an interview. “Is the U.S. important? Absolutely, but is it critical and a must have? Maybe not.”While the ruling may not be good news for Bombardier, it’s no apocryphal, Schonland said.Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard said Bombardier, in which the province has invested US$1 billion, will continue to sell the aircraft around the world.“Boeing may have won a battle but let me tell you, the war is far from over and that we shall win,” he said in Quebec City.Aerospace rival Embraer said a WTO dispute panel will be established on Friday to review the Brazilian government’s complaint against the CSeries across the world.Analyst Richard Aboulafia of the Teal Group said Bombardier has no choice but to stay the course and hope things get better.He said Boeing may have won a hollow victory since it may have unleashed a political battle that could lead to lost military contracts in Canada and Britain and the ire of Delta, which could turn to Airbus or Embraer.“The only way Boeing could help the CSeries in some markets is by doing this,” he said. “It sends the message that they take the CSeries extremely seriously and that frankly elevates the jetliner’s status.”last_img read more

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Robots walk talk pour beer and take over CES tech show

first_imgLAS VEGAS — Robots that walk, talk, pour beer and play pingpong have taken over the CES gadget show in Las Vegas again. Just don’t expect to find one in your home any time soon.Most home robot ventures have failed, in part because they’re so difficult and expensive to design to a level of intelligence that consumers will find useful, says Bilal Zuberi, a robotics-oriented venture capitalist at Lux Capital. But that doesn’t keep companies from trying.“Roboticists, I guess, will never give up their dream to build Rosie,” says Zuberi, referring to the humanoid maid from “The Jetsons.”But there’s some hope for others. Frank Gillett, a tech analyst at Forrester, says robots with more focused missions such as mowing the lawn or delivering cheeseburgers stand a better shot at finding a useful niche.ROBOTS THAT DELIVERThere are so many delivery robots at CES that it’s easy to imagine that we’ll all be stumbling over them on the sidewalk — or in the elevator — before long. Zuberi says it’s among the new robot trends with the most promise because the field is drawing on some of the same advances that power self-driving cars.But it’s hard to tell which — if any — will still be around in a few years.Segway Robotics, part of the same company that makes electric rental scooters for Lime, Jump and Bird, is the latest to get into the delivery game with a new machine it calls Loomo Delivery. The wheeled office robot can avoid obstacles, board elevators and deliver documents to another floor.A similar office courier called the Holabot was unveiled by Chinese startup Shenzhen Pudu Technology. CEO Felix Zhang says his company already has a track record selling robots in China, where its Pudubot robot — which looks like shelves on wheels — navigates busy restaurants as a kind of robotic waiter.Nearly all of these robots use a technology called visual SLAM, short for simultaneous localization and mapping. Most are wheeled, though there are outliers — such as one from German automotive company Continental, which wants to deploy walking robotic dogs to carry packages from self-driving delivery vans to residential front doors.A delivery robot will need both sophisticated autonomy and a focused mission to stand out from the pack, says Saumil Nanavati, head of business development for Robby Technology. His company’s namesake robot travels down sidewalks as a “store on wheels.” The company recently partnered with PepsiCo to deliver snacks around a California university campus.ROBOTS FOR DOGSDoes man’s best friend need a robotic pal of its own? Some startups think so.“There’s a big problem with separation anxiety, obesity and depression in pets,” says Bee-oh Kim, a marketing manager for robotics firm Varram.The company’s $99 robot is essentially a moving treat dispenser that motivates pets to chase it around. A herd of the small, dumbbell-shaped robots zoomed around a pen at the show — though there were no canine or feline conference attendees to show how the machines really work.Varram’s robot takes two hours to charge and can run for 10 hours — just enough time to allow a pet’s guilt-ridden human companion to get home from work.ROBOTS ON GRANDPARENT WATCHSamsung is coming out with a robot that can keep its eye on grandparents.The rolling robot can talk and has two digital eyes on a black screen. It’s designed to track the medicines seniors take, measure blood pressure and call 911 if it detects a fall.Samsung didn’t say when Samsung Bot Care would be available, but some startups are putting similar ideas in action. Israeli company Intuition Robotics used CES to announce the upcoming commercial launch of ElliQ, a robotic voice assistant that can sit on end tables and help older adults communicate with family members without having to fiddle with a computer.ROBOT FRIENDSLovot is a simple robot with just one aim — to make its owner happy.It can’t carry on long conversations, but it’s still social — approaching people so they can interact, moving around a space to create a digital map, responding to being embraced.Lovot’s horn-shaped antenna — featuring a 360-degree camera — recognizes its surroundings and detects the direction of sound and voices.Lovot is the brainchild of Groove X CEO Kaname Hayashi, who previously worked on SoftBank’s Pepper, a humanoid robot that briefly appeared in a few U.S. shopping malls two years ago. Hayashi wanted to create a real connection between people and robots.“This is just supporting your heart, our motivation,” he says.___AP video journalist James Brooks contributed to this report.___This story has been corrected to say that robots pour beer, rather than brew.Matt O’Brien And Joseph Pisani, The Associated Presslast_img read more

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Worries that China trade talks are stalling weigh on stocks

BANGKOK — Asian shares are mixed as investors fret over the status of China-U.S. trade talks after U.S. benchmarks closed mostly lower.Japan’s Nikkei 225 index lost 0.4 per cent to 21,475.97 Thursday while the Shanghai Composite also fell 0.4 per cent, to 2,943.42. The Kospi in South Korea dropped 0.6 per cent to 2,222.19. But Australia’s S&P ASX/200 edged 0.1 per cent higher to 6,155.40 and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong also rose 0.1 per cent to 28,785.57.Comments from a key U.S. trade negotiator stoked doubts overnight over how much progress was being made on resolving the trade war between the U.S. and China.There was more discouraging economic news from China, where a survey released Thursday showed manufacturing activity fell to a three-year low in February amid the tariff battle with Washington.The monthly purchasing managers’ index by the government statistics bureau and an industry group fell 0.3 points to 49.2 on a 100-point scale on which numbers below 50 indicate activity contracting. That was the lowest level since February 2016.Chinese manufacturers have been hurt by President Donald Trump’s punitive tariffs in a fight over Beijing’s technology plans and cooling consumer demand at home and abroad.The trade battle and has rattled Chinese consumers, some of whom say they are putting off big purchases until the economic outlook is clearer. That sets back Beijing’s campaign to nurture self-sustaining economic growth based on domestic consumption instead of exports and investment.“Unless the trade war truly turns into an extended truce, the weakening trend may not end quickly,” Irene Pang of ING said in a report.Major U.S. stock indexes closed mostly lower Wednesday after wavering for much of the day between small gains and losses. Health care, communications and technology companies took the heaviest losses, while financial, industrial and energy stocks notched gains.Stocks headed broadly lower in early trading after U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told a panel of lawmakers that “much still needs to be done” before the U.S. and China can reach an agreement. China has offered to make major purchases of U.S. goods, such as soybeans and natural gas, in a bid to resolve the conflict, but Lighthizer said such steps wouldn’t be enough.“The issues on the table are too serious to be resolved with promises of additional purchases,” he said. “We need new rules.”President Donald Trump has postponed increasing tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods that would have been effective March 2. He has not given a new date for the higher tariffs if negotiations falter.WALL STREET: The S&P 500 index dropped 1.52 points to 2,792.38 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average gave up 0.3 per cent, to 25,985.16. The Nasdaq composite gained 0.1 per cent to 7,554.51, while the Russell 2000 index picked up 0.2 per cent to 1,581.05. Major indexes in Europe declined.ENERGY: U.S. crude lost 5 cents to $56.89 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It climbed 2.6 per cent to settle at $56.94 a barrel on Wednesday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, slipped 21 cents to $66.37 per barrel. It gained 1.9 per cent to close at $66.58 a barrel in London.CURRENCIES: The dollar declined to 110.90 yen from 110.99 yen on Wednesday. The euro strengthened to $1.1378 from $1.1367.___AP Business writers Damian J. Troise and Alex Veiga contributed.Elaine Kurtenbach, The Associated Press read more

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Judge orders Montana congressman photographed fingerprinted

by Matt Volz, The Associated Press Posted Aug 21, 2017 2:17 pm MDT Last Updated Aug 21, 2017 at 9:40 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email HELENA, Mont. – A judge has ordered Montana Rep. Greg Gianforte to be photographed and fingerprinted for assaulting a reporter, opening the possibility of political opponents using the congressman’s mug shot next year when he is up for re-election.Justice Court Judge Rick West ordered Gianforte, a Republican, to report by Sept. 15 to the jail in Bozeman to be booked for the assault charge.“Greg remains focused on meeting with Montanans from all of the state’s 56 counties and being a strong voice for Montana in Washington,” Gianforte spokesman Travis Hall wrote in an emailed statement. “Attorneys are reviewing the order and considering options for appeal.”The judge issued the order last week, and it was first reported Monday by the Bozeman Daily Chronicle.Gianforte had argued he should not have to be photographed and fingerprinted because he was never formally arrested for attacking Ben Jacobs, a reporter for Britain’s the Guardian newspaper. Jacobs was trying to ask Gianforte a question about health care legislation when the assault occurred on May 24, the eve of Gianforte’s election.Prosecutors countered that Gianforte, even though he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanour without being arrested, was still subject to the formal booking process at the Gallatin County Detention Center.Jacobs said Gianforte “body-slammed” him and broke his glasses. Audio recorded by Jacobs documented the sounds of a scuffle followed by Gianforte yelling, “Get the hell out of here!”Gianforte’s campaign initially characterized Jacobs as the aggressor, but Gianforte pleaded guilty to the misdemeanour charge in June and said in an apology letter that he alone was responsible for the attack.The day after the assault, Gianforte defeated Democrat Rob Quist in a special election to replace Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke as Montana’s only congressman. Gianforte has already filed paperwork to run for re-election in 2018 and has one Democratic challenger so far, Billings attorney John Heenan.Gianforte contested the judge’s original order that he be booked, fingerprinted and photographed. His attorneys said the judge did not have authority to order a defendant to be photographed or fingerprinted and argued Gianforte was exempt from the requirements because he was charged with a misdemeanour, not a felony.West said in his order, signed Thursday, that the court has the authority to order fingerprinting and photographing. If Gianforte doesn’t comply by Sept. 15, he will be in contempt of court, West wrote.It’s virtually guaranteed that Democrats will use a Gianforte mug shot to try to persuade voters not to vote for him in the next campaign. Montana Democratic Party spokesman Roy Loewenstein said Monday the mug shot is part of Gianforte’s story.“We’re intending to help explain to Montana voters who Gianforte is,” Loewenstein said. “We’re going to make sure they see the complete record.”Gianforte was fined $385 and ordered to complete 40 hours of community service and 20 hours of anger management counselling. He also apologized to Jacobs and gave $50,000 to the Committee to Protect Journalists.Gianforte plans to work off his community-service sentence with a Bozeman organization that builds custom wheelchairs for children.___This version corrects that the order was issued on Thursday, not Friday. FILE – In this June 20, 2017 file photo, Rep.-elect Greg Gianforte responds to questions at his home in Bozeman, Mont., about an election-eve confrontation with a reporter. A judge has ordered Gianforte to be photographed and fingerprinted for assaulting a reporter, opening the possibility of the congressman’s mug shot to be used by political opponents next year when Gianforte is up for re-election. (AP Photo/Bobby Caina Calvan, File) Judge orders Montana congressman photographed, fingerprinted read more

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Opinion 4 key players behind Oregons success

Oregon then-redshirt-junior defensive back Erick Dargan runs back an interception during a game against Kansas State in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl at the University of Phoenix Stadium on Jan.3, 2013. Oregon won, 35-17.Credit: Courtesy of TNSDALLAS — The Oregon Ducks proved their depth with a 59-20 thrashing of Florida State in the Rose Bowl, but the team has thrived throughout the season on both sides of the ball.When the Ducks take on Ohio State in the College Football Playoff National Championship, there will be a number of key players on offense and defense whom the Buckeyes will have to pay attention to. Offense:Marcus Mariota, redshirt-junior quarterbackFor obvious reasons, Mariota is the main focus for the Buckeye defense heading into the College Football Playoff National Championship.The Honolulu native accounted for 56 total touchdowns on his way to the Heisman Trophy this season, and totaled more than 4,800 yards to spearhead the Ducks’ attack. He’s been the starter in Eugene, Ore., for three seasons, but Mariota still found time to praise the players around him for the offense’s success this year.“It’s like being a point guard on a basketball team,” Mariota said Saturday. “It’s fun to dink and dunk and watch those guys make plays.” Defense:Erick Dargan, redshirt-senior defensive backLike Marshall, Dargan has had success throughout the season when it comes to catching the football.The main difference is, his catches come from the opposing team.Dargan is tied for third in the nation with seven interceptions this season, and said his ball-hawking ability comes from his preparation and increased knowledge of the game.“I’m just around the ball,” he said. “Understanding the defense a lot better, understanding where the ball might go within the defense on certain calls, and just making plays when they present themselves.”But forcing turnovers isn’t all Dargan can do, as he also leads the team with 90 total tackles and has added 2.5 tackles for loss. Byron Marshall, junior running backMarshall is listed as a running back, but has played the part of a pass-catcher for most of the season.He leads the team with 66 receptions and 834 receiving yards and has caught five touchdowns through 14 games. But Marshall has still been involved with the running game, racking up 383 yards and another score on the ground.On Saturday, Oregon coach Mark Helfrich said Marshall has taken the switch to receiver in stride on his way to becoming a key part of the Ducks’ offense.“We know what he can do as a tailback, we know what he can do as a receiver, and we’ll just continue pushing that envelope,” Helfrich said. “But I think just from a selflessness standpoint, it was a great move for him and our team.” DeForest Buckner, junior defensive linemanBuckner and his defensive teammates might not get as much attention as Mariota and the Oregon offense, but he’s found a way to be disruptive to opponents throughout the season.Buckner has totaled 73 tackles with a team-high 13 tackles for loss, and he sits fourth on the team with four quarterback sacks. He’s also tallied a trio of quarterback hits and forced one fumble.OSU redshirt-sophomore quarterback Cardale Jones — the player Buckner will likely be going after for much of the game Monday night — said the Oregon defense is an underrated part of the team’s success.“They don’t get as much credit as they deserve,” Jones said. “One thing that really sticks out to me is the way they play as a unit. They don’t blow many coverages. They don’t miss many tackles. They don’t make many solo tackles. There’s a lot of guys to the ball.”While playing his role in that unit, Buckner has been disruptive in pass defense as well, registering four pass break-ups so far this season.The Buckeyes and the Ducks are set to square off at 8:30 p.m. EST Monday in Arlington, Texas, with the first-ever College Football Playoff National Championship on the line. read more

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Government wont use Bank of Ireland stake to oppose Bouchers €843k salary

first_imgBANK OF IRELAND shareholders are expected to approve an €843,000 pay packet for the chief executive of Bank of Ireland later this morning, after the government said it would not use its own stake in the bank to vote against it.Junior finance minister Brian Hayes said yesterday that the government’s policy was not to use its shareholding in the country’s banks to determine pay levels – and that it would instead wait for banks to return their own proposals for how to tackle pay.Last night a slew of Labour backbench TDs called on the government to utilise its 15 per cent stake in the bank – accrued through a €4.7 billion taxpayer bailout of the bank – to vote against Boucher’s salary, which is well above the government’s €500,000 salary cap for bank employees.A resolution confirming the pay for the chief executive and other senior staff will be considered at the bank’s Annual General Meeting in Ballsbridge this morning.Bank of Ireland’s annual report revealed that Boucher could actually have received a total pay packet of €910,000 – but he had waived €67,000 of his salary.Kevin Humphreys, Robert Dowds, Anne Ferris, Ann Phelan and Arthur Spring all said it was inappropriate that when other workers around the country were facing pay cuts or an uncertain future, the chief executive of a bank saved by public money could be paid so much.However, Hayes told the TDs that the government’s policy was to manage the banks on an ‘arm’s-length’ basis – meaning the government would not use its 15 per cent stake in the bank to directly vote on pay matters.“These frameworks, which are bank-specific, are published on the website of the Department of Finance, having been agreed with our international partners, the Troika,” Hayes said, saying each bank was expected to delivery a strategy on how to cut pay by the end of April.‘Up to banks to decide how to cut pay’“However, I expect that any measures proposed will require sacrifices at all employee levels and strong leadership to be exercised by the banks in delivering in a timely manner. The stakes for all are high,” Hayes said.He said that Bank of Ireland was complying with policies on banking pay, however – saying the previous government had authorised Boucher’s pay in excess of the salary cap, but said: “I am reluctant to discuss the remuneration details of an individual on the floor of the House.The strong legal advice available to this and previous Governments is that pre-existing contractual commitments have to be honoured. In the case of the new CEO appointments at AIB and Permanent TSB, respectively, the Minister ensured the policy on remuneration was observed and it continues to be held.Kevin Humphreys said the request wasn’t a case of asking a minister “to interfere in the day-to-day operations of the banks – rather, I am asking him to operate the taxpayer’s 15 per cent shareholding.”Illustrating frustration among Fine Gael backbenchers as well as Labour TDs, Robert Dowds said his Fine Gael colleague Peter Mathews had illustrated Boucher’s pay as being “the equivalent of nine Deputies’ salaries.”Arthur Spring urged finance minister Michael Noonan to use the 15 per cent shareholding “on behalf of the people”.Read: Bank of Ireland CEO received total pay of €843,000 last yearlast_img read more

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The Central Bank Governor on why deposit limits are not targets but

first_img Wednesday 23 Nov 2016, 2:47 PM Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article 94 Views By Philip Lane Short URL Share9 Tweet Email1 http://jrnl.ie/3097627 Governor, Central Bank of Ireland Philip Lane 13 Comments IT IS OFTEN assumed that the mortgage measures are of relevance only to house buyers. This is not the case.In line with the Central Bank’s mission to safeguard stability and protect consumers, the mortgage measures are central in ensuring the stability of the financial system as a whole. And every person has a stake in that crucial objective.In Ireland, we know only too well the painful problems caused by reckless lending and over-indebtedness.The mortgage measures are designed to ensure that banks lend sensibly, house buyers do not over-borrow and excess credit does not build up within the Irish financial system.Given the importance of this framework, it is wise to review the mortgage measures on a regular basis.Today’s review is based on wide-ranging analysis by the staff of the Central Bank and has benefited from the approximately fifty external submissions we received from our public consultation process over the summer.Overall, the review has confirmed that the mortgage measures have been successfully implemented – the banks are operating within the measures, leading to sensible lending patterns, which in turn are contributing to financial stability. The overall framework is appropriate.The evidence shows that the probability of default for mortgages taken out under the measures is lower. Put simply, those who bought properties under the measures are better prepared to manage their mortgage payments in the event of a future downturn in the economy.The framework requires borrowers to satisfy two requirements: A maximum loan to income (LTI) ratio and a minimum deposit relative to the size of the loan, known as the loan to value (LTV) is not too high.Excessively high LTV ratios fail to provide sufficient insulation in the event of a downturn in house prices, pushing borrowers into negative equity. The Central Bank says that the rules are to guard against spiralling credit rather than rising house prices. Source: AP/Press Association ImagesTime for changeToday, we are announcing some limited refinements to improve the effectiveness and sustainability of the LTV regulations, ensuring a more durable framework for the long-term.All first-time buyers will now be required to provide a minimum deposit of 10% of the value of the property, with the LTV ceiling set at 90%.This replaces the current system whereby a deposit of 10% was required on the first €220,000 of the price of a property and 20 per cent on the balance above €220,000.The requirement for second and subsequent buyers to provide a minimum deposit of 20% when taking out a mortgage remains unchanged.The buy-to-let requirements also remain unchanged, requiring investors to raise a minimum 30% deposit.Why the change in the case of first-time buyers?There are two main reasons for this refinement. First, the current system is complex and would require regular updating, given that the economic and financial impact of the €220,000 threshold would necessarily shift in line with the evolution of incomes, house prices and other factors.Under the new system, the measures should require adjustments only if wider macro-financial conditions – such as material shifts in credit patterns or financial stability conditions – warrant revisions.As an illustration, this simplification shifts the LTV ceiling for a €300,000 mortgage from 87.3% under the previous system to 90%.Second, there was evidence at the time of the introduction of the measures showing that first-time buyers defaulted less than second-time and subsequent buyers, with the differential in default probabilities especially strong in the case of lower-valued properties.However, the most recent data show that the differential in default probabilities is no longer weaker for higher-value homes than for lower-valued homes, eliminating an important justification for the current asymmetric treatment of lower-valued and higher-valued properties in the LTV regulations. A new estate agents shop advertising private houses in Kilcullen Village in Co Kildare. Source: Eamonn Farrell/Photocall IrelandWe are also refining the degree to which lenders can grant loans in excess of the LTV limits for a limited percentage of their loan books.Providing some capacity to lend in excess of the LTV limits allows banks to take into account the specific circumstances of individual borrowers, which sometimes may justify a higher LTV ratio.There will now be separate allowances for first-time buyers and second and subsequent buyers.In the long-term, this will give the Central Bank flexibility to adjust these specific limits in a calibrated way if threats to financial stability emerge.The 20% allowance for banks to lend in excess of the LTI ceiling remains unchanged.Finally, we have also decided to extend the current valuation period from two months to four months, to take account of the fact that some sales can take longer than the average of three months.It is critically important to appreciate that our framework sets limits on the size of mortgages: the LTI and LTV ratios are not targets but ceilings.In buying a home, households should take into account the risk protections offered by higher deposits, meaning they have less reliance on mortgage debt.Equally, lenders should assess the loan-bearing capacity of each mortgage customer and restrict the size of the mortgage if indicated by the credit risk analysis.Everybody gains from the prudent borrowing and lending patterns that are essential for a stable financial system: this is precisely what the Central Bank is seeking to protect through its mortgage measures.Philip Lane is Governor of the Central Bank of Ireland. He is a Professor of Political Economy at Trinity College Dublin and a former assistant professor at Columbia University. He graduated with a PhD in Economics from Harvard University in 1995.  Nov 23rd 2016, 2:47 PM The Central Bank Governor on why deposit limits are ‘not targets but ceilings’ Governor Philip Lane explains why the Central Bank wants to make things easier for first-time buyers. last_img read more

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Man in his 30s stabbed repeatedly by gang of youths in Longford

first_imgMan in his 30s stabbed repeatedly by gang of youths in Longford The incident happened just after 8.30pm last night. 44 Comments Short URL Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Mar 18th 2017, 10:03 AM Saturday 18 Mar 2017, 10:03 AM http://jrnl.ie/3294289 Share Tweet Email3 New Street, Longford Town Source: Google MapsA MAN IN his 30s has been seriously wounded after suffering multiple stab wounds in an assault in Co Longford.The incident happened on New Street in Longford Town just after 8.30pm on St Patrick’s Day.The man “suffered apparent stab wounds when he was assaulted by a number of youths” according to a Garda spokesperson. He has been taken to Midland Regional Hospital in Mullingar, where his condition is understood to be critical.An 18-year-old man and two male juveniles were arrested in connection with the crime a short time later. They are currently being detained at Longford Garda Station.The scene of the incident has been preserved pending a technical examination. Investigations are ongoing according to gardaí.They have appealed for any witnesses or anyone who has information regarding the incident to contact them at Longford Garda Station on 043 3350570, on the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666111, or at any Garda station.Read: Man shot dead at Paris airport after taking soldier’s gunRead: Man to appear in court this morning in connection with fatal Artane stabbing By Cianan Brennan 31,138 Views last_img read more

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Half a century of experience in teaching Greek

first_imgFor more than five decades the Greek Orthodox Community of Oakleigh and Districts has been educating children in the Greek language, establishing itself as an integral stakeholder in the local and wider Greek community.Last year saw the introduction of many new and exciting curriculum initiatives at Sts Anargiri Greek Language Centre. Apart from the traditional Greek dance classes that are conducted at the school, a music program was offered to students. A number of students undertake bouzouki lessons in group and private sessions conducted in a formal setting with a music curriculum developed based on each individual student’s level of competency. Advanced classes have also been added to the curriculum to accommodate students who have recently arrived from Greece or those wanting to deepen their Greek language skills in an engaging and challenging setting. The curriculum covered in the advanced classes is based on that taught in schools in Greece.A number of students undertook the examination for the Certificate of Attainment in the Greek Language, achieving excellent results in comparison to other schools in the local area. Students were well supported by their teachers in preparing for this examination, with many extra sessions designed to provide students with the utmost opportunity to achieve the best possible outcome. As of 2015, Sts Anargiri Greek Language Centre became one of only a handful of schools throughout Victoria offering Classical Greek as a VCE subject. This provides students with an opportunity to not only study the ancient Greek language but also gain valuable extra points on their ATAR score. Now 2016 is looking to be another exciting year as the school aims to build on developing the curriculum to meet the needs of students while also providing many more opportunities for them to immerse themselves in the Greek language through engaging learning programs. A cultural program will be introduced, providing those students who choose to participate with engaging activities to develop their Greek language skills even further through song, dance and drama. Another key focus in 2016 will be to encourage students and parents to engage in the Greek language outside of the classroom setting, and the school aims to assist in equipping students and parents with tools and strategies in order to do this successfully. This year the school will also be looking to extend its educational offerings to adult learners. The introduction of adult Greek language classes this year will provide an excellent opportunity for those wishing to learn Greek by undertaking a course specifically designed to cater for the needs of adult learners. If you wish to improve your skills and knowledge of Modern Greek or simply want to experience the richness of the Greek language, then this course is perfect for you. Making the right choice about your child’s education is of utmost importance for their future. Therefore, it is important to take into consideration what the school can provide in order to achieve the best possible outcomes for their learning. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more

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Strange Whirlpool Hole in the Sky Spotted Over UAE and Oman

first_imgStay on target Locals were mystified after a strange “whirlpool hole” in the sky appeared over UAE and Oman this weekend.Images and videos posted to Twitter and Facebook show a large circular patch in the sky, appearing as if somebody “punched a hole” in the atmosphere.شوهدت هذه الظاهرة النادرة والجميلة صباح اليوم في مدينة العينتُسمى hole punch cloudأو ظاهرة fallstreak hole pic.twitter.com/NbOd9zofNk— إبراهيم الجروان (@ibrahimaljarwan) March 17, 2019Meteorologist Ebrahim Al Jarwan, who posted video of the strange sight, said that the “rare and beautiful” phenomenon was referred to as a “fallstreak hole” or “hole punch cloud.”A fallstreak hole is a large circular or elliptical gap that can appear in cirrocumulus or altocumulus clouds, according to the National Weather Service (NWS). Mini Satellite View of Hurricane Dorian Shows Intense Storm ActivityWild Horses of NC to Ride Out Hurricane With ‘Butts to the Wind’ center_img Fallstreak holes usually form in mid- to high-level clouds, which are often composed of tiny water droplets that are much colder than freezing, but have yet to freeze. These “supercooled” water droplets need a “reason” to freeze, which usually comes in the form of ice crystals. Airplanes passing through the cloud layer can bring these ice crystals.Once the ice crystals are introduced, the water droplet quickly freeze, grow and start to fall. A hole is then left behind, which will start to expand outward as neighboring droplets start to freeze, NWS said.Because of their strange appearance — and rarity —  are often attributed to UFOs because they form as large circular gaps in cirrocumulus or altocumulus clouds. But rest easy, they are just super-cool cloud formations.More on Geek.com:Incredible Images of Historic ‘Bomb Cyclone’ That Blasted Central USRare ‘Super Bloom’ Erupts in Southern CaliforniaWatch: Sinkhole the Size of Football Field Shuts Down Zoolast_img read more

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Keith Lee makes his debut tonight on NXT Interviews following Smackdown Live

first_img Google+ Jason Namako RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Twitter Pinterest WhatsApp WWE NXT airs tonight on WWE Network at 8:00 PM ET.Set for tonight is the following:* Johnny Gargano vs. Aleister Black* Keith Lee makes his NXT TV debut* Ricochet in action* Mae Young Classic Qualifying Match: Vanessa Borne vs. Taynara ContiWrestleview.com will have a recap of NXT later tonight.Interviews following Smackdown Live in OrlandoWWE posted the following videos from after last night’s episode of Smackdown in Orlando.center_img NXT TakeOver: Toronto Results – 8/10/19 (Adam Cole vs. Johnny Gargano for the NXT Title) Facebook Video: Triple H speaks about the condition of Cole and Gargano following TakeOver: Toronto Video: Johnny Gargano receives standing ovation after NXT TakeOver went off the air last_img read more

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Manchester City star apologizes to referee

first_imgManchester City’s Raheem Sterling has issued an apology to referee Viktor Kassai after he won a comical penalty during the team’s 6-0 victory over Shakhtar Donetsk on Wednesday.With the Premier League champions 1-0 up in the first half, Sterling burst into the area and tripped over as he tried to dig his foot under the ball to chip Andriy Pyatov in the Shakhtar goal.There was no player making any form of contact with the former Liverpool man, yet the experienced Kassai pointed to the spot.“I went to chip the ball and don’t know what happened. I didn’t feel contact. I scuffed the ball. Apologies to the ref,” Sterling said after the game, according to Reuters.Shakhtar Donetsk manager, Paulo Fonseca laughed when he was asked about the decision.“It is difficult to speak about a penalty after a result like that — but it’s ridiculous, that’s all I can say,” he said.Pep Guardiola, Raheem Sterling, Manchester CityGuardiola: Sterling must ignore Ronaldo & Messi comparisons Andrew Smyth – September 13, 2019 Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola advised Raheem Sterling to ignore comparisons to Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, who he rates as incomparable.“Everyone saw it, but it is not because of the penalty we lost the game,” he added.Meanwhile, Man City boss Pep Guardiola agreed that the referee got it wrong and said the incident highlighted the need for the video assistant referee (VAR) system to be introduced.“We realised it wasn’t a penalty. We don’t like to score in that situation,” said Guardiola, who conceded Sterling could have told the referee at the time.“You know VAR and what it is — the referee must be helped because they don’t want to make mistakes.”“The game is so quick, so fast these days. It would take 10 seconds for somebody to say something to the referee,” he added.last_img read more

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No death penalty for gang member who killed Escondido woman during shootout

first_img Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom KUSI Newsroom, March 29, 2018 No death penalty for gang member who killed Escondido woman during shootout Catherine Kennedy, 55VISTA (KUSI) — Prosecutors won’t seek the death penalty against an alleged gang member charged in a shootout in Escondido that killed a woman driving home from church, it was announced Thursday.Dionicio Torrez Jr., 25, is charged with murder, a special circumstance gang allegation, attempted murder of rival gang members, and shooting at an occupied vehicle in connection with the death of 55-year-old Catherine Kennedy.Torrez will face life in prison without parole if convicted at a trial scheduled for May 22, said Deputy District Attorney Laurie Hauf.The victim was found shortly after 9 p.m. on March 7, 2017, alongside eastbound Grand Avenue near Midway Drive, suffering a gunshot wound to her head. Her silver Toyota Camry crashed into a parked vehicle.Investigators believe Kennedy was struck by a stray bullet fired by one of at least two gang members shooting at each other. Kennedy was taken to Palomar Medical Center, where she died.A 16-year-old boy was also arrested in the case and charged in Juvenile Court. Posted: March 29, 2018last_img read more

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Bird flu monitoring underway as duck season opens

first_imgGreen-winged teal. Photo: Fish and Wildlife Service.Duck season opens Sept. 1. An outbreak of pandemic bird flu in the Lower 48 has wildlife managers monitoring migratory waterfowl nationwide, including in Alaska.Download AudioEarlier this year a hunter in Washington state shot a green-winged teal that tested positive for pathenogenic bird flu. Since then, it’s been detected in most other Western states and several midwestern states, which means efforts to monitor the current outbreak are well underway.Dan Rosenberg with the Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game is the statewide waterfowl coordinator.“It’s not likely that we’re going to find birds with highly pathenogenic influenza in Alaska, but the possibility is always there.”There are two active flu strains being dubbed “highly pathenogenic” right now. Rosenberg clarifies that terminology:“Highly pathenogenic refers to their effects on poultry. It’s not in reference to effects on wild birds or on humans.”Fish and Game is advising hunters to abide by a lot of the normal protocol for safe game handling:“We are always advising hunters not to handle or eat obviously sick birds,” Rosenberg says.….Wear rubber or disposable Latex gloves when you handle birds. Wash your hands, knives and countertops after handling waterfowl…..“Don’t eat, drink or smoke when you’re handling the animals so there isn’t that tendency to take your hand from the bird to the food to your mouth,” Rosenberg says. “And thoroughly cook birds to 160-degrees Fahrenheit.”Bird hunters in the Palmer Hayflats and the Anchorage Coastal Wildlife Refuge may run into field technicians asking for samples from hunter-shot birds.Also new this year: the price of a federal duck stamp goes from $15 to $25. And in Alaska, the rules for exactly who needs a federal duck stamp have changed.Bag limits for certain goose species have also changed in certain hunting districts.Find those changes and more specifics from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.last_img read more

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Man killed in police gunfight

first_img.A suspected robber was killed during a reported gunfight between a gang of robbers and law enforcement in Naljani area of Gazipur district on Sunday, reports UNB.The deceased is Afaz Uddin from Gafargaon upazila of Mymensingh.Police also arrested two other members, Rubel and Alam, of the gang from the spot.Joydebpur police station officer-in-charge Aminul Islam said acting on tip off that a gang of robbers were preparing to commit robbery, they conducted a drive in the area.“Afaz sustained bullet injury during the gunfight and was declared dead when taken to a hospital,” he said.The body was sent to Shaheed Tajuddin Ahmad Medical College for an autopsy, he added.last_img

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Bridging gaps with celluloid

first_imgFilms being a major form of communication, Chinese Consulate in Kolkata in cooperation with Nandan West Bengal Film Center, has brought The Chinese Film Festival to be held from 17 to 20 July  at Nandan Center in order to bridge the communication gap between the two nations. Seven of the best Chinese films of all time will be shown at the film festival. After each screening, a quiz will be held, and those giving right answers will each get a souvenir. Some films will also be screened at the schools and universities in Kolkata, as well as in other cities or states covered by the Consulate. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The event was inaugurated on Sunday evening at the Nandan Center in the presence of a number of invited celebrities and film stars like MP Dinesh Trivedi, actor Rituparna SenGupta, film-maker Mahesh Bhatt as well as Principal Secretary of the WB Ministry of Information and Cultural affairs, Atri Bhattacharya.    The Festival is being held against the backdrop of enhanced cultural exchanges between China and India and it is hoped that the film festival can contribute in a small way to increased a better understanding of the neighboring country by people in Kolkata. It is also hoped that Indians will get to know that they have a lot in common with the Chinese.last_img read more

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SC Sekhars Mansarovar

first_imgVisitors to Mansarovar have often recorded the majesty and myriad energies of Mount Kailash and stated that there is a certain light, which is found only in the mountains, and it embraces us, gets into our inner being and travels with us as we ascend.At the Shridaharani Gallery, S.C. Sekhar’s exhibition is one that reflects the fabric of India’s faith. And amidst the holy city of Varanasi and many other images, it is his Mansarovar image that stands as the piece de resistance of a pilgrim’s journey, in search of the sacred and the sublime. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”Mansarovar is difficult to shoot,” says Sekhar who has been one of the best brains in the finance world who retired as EVP of ITC Hotels. As an astute meticulous finance chief, his travels over nearly four decades mirror his finesse with his camera.The Mount Kailash image is one that encompasses the five elements of Creation. The scene is one of atmospherics, the cumulus cloud that passes by seems to have bathed itself in the golden light that kisses the mountain peak. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThis is an image of many hues, it is as if the world beckons at its foothills. Legend has it that the Mother Goddess would come down from Kailash to take a dip in the Mansarovar’s waters at dawn. “A dip in the waters is an experience that washes over your inner senses and soul,” says Sekhar who had taken the trip with the Shankaracharya of Hampi.”Everything about Mansarovar and its lake is enchanting,” says Sekhar.”The air is crisp and clean, and it is the light that is distinct as well as different.” What emerges is a scene that invites you to imagine the split sunbeams on the mountaintop, the layers of rocks emanating the refractive indices of light that seemed to have quietened its little crevices to manifest divinity at its imperial best. You cannot look at Mount Kailash and not think of Nanda Devi. In Hindu mythology, Nanda Devi is the mountain bride of Lord Shiva, who sits in meditation on Mount Kailash. Travelers have said that if we were to ride on the wings of a Himalayan griffon across the mountains, soaring from Bandarpunch to Nanda Devi, then follow a straight line towards Tibet, the trajectory of our flight would take us directly to Kailash, no more than 300 kilometers away. This show unveils as a maze of ancient faiths and modern facts, citing Hindu and Buddhist religious rituals as well as modern-day tales of experiences.Another image that is riveting in its poise and still life perspective is ‘Trishul’. Scarlet painted trishuls grouped together at a wayside wall on the road to Sikkim is at once a brilliant rustic, reflection on religious rituals and practices that alternate with wry observations on the eccentricities of some of the Indian pilgrims.Among the most famous of all transcendental weapons is Lord Shiva’s trishul-astra. This three-pointed astra is one of the symbols most commonly associated with Shiva in Vedic iconography. The origin of the trishul-astra is described in the Vishnu Purana. Created in association with Lord Surya – the Sun God, it is said to have been carved out of matter from the Sun. The beauty of this image is the multiple references it throws up to us.Lord Shiva’s Trishul-Astra, or trident, has come to be associated with numerous triad attributes. Held in Shiva’s right hand, it represents the three gunas. The three prongs represent three shaktis of Shiva: iccha (will), jnana (knowledge), and kriya (action). Trishul’s points also symbolizethree aspects of Shiva: paramashiva, parashakti (paranada or shiva-tattva) and parabindu (parameshvara or shakti-tattva). Shiva is known as the Lord of Omkara (Omkareshvara), thus in transcendental sound, the three points of trishul-astra are associated with the three syllables of Omkara: A (akara), U (ukara) and M (makara).The show runs till September 20 at Shridharani Gallery.last_img read more

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How Apples App Store Changed Business at Its Core

first_imgJuly 12, 2013 6 min read In raw numbers, the Apple App Store’s reach is undeniable, with more than 50 billion downloads and about 900,000 apps in total. Though the stats are impressive, what matters more is the transformative influence the App Store has had in the business world, affecting everything from the logic of pricing to startup culture itself.Even as Apple got people used to the idea of having a supercomputer in their pocket, it significantly changed how businesses interact with consumers around the world, says Brian Blau, research director for consumer technology and markets at research firm Gartner. Thanks to Apple’s innovation, the way we think about product sales and delivery, about marketing and customer loyalty, and about what a hot new startup looks like will never be the same.PricingThe sweet spot for app pricing, when the app isn’t free, is usually $0.99. This “has been a magic number for lots of businesses,” says Sucharita Mulpuru, an analyst at research firm Forrester, noting that it was Apple’s price for iTunes song downloads even before the App Store launched. Another tech titan that has borrowed this pricing logic is Amazon, which offers many 99-cent ebooks for its Kindle reader.The advantage of such pricing, says Mulpuru, is that “it’s a micropayment, it’s something you almost don’t even think about.” But, she adds, it may be a strategy best suited to large companies doing a high volume of sales: “You have to sell a hell of a lot of whatever it is you’re selling to make any decent money.” Nevertheless, by reducing payment friction — the consumer’s resistance to parting with hard-earned cash — Apple changed the game.Related: Apple’s App Store Turns 5: A Look Back at the Most Popular Business AppsProduct deliveryIn changing the way digital goods are acquired, the App Store also spurred product companies to reinvent themselves in creating offerings for the digital space. “Amazon was king of delivering physical books to your house,” says Blau. “Now you can get ebooks.”Similarly, print media brands such as Wired magazine have developed apps to deliver custom content to their readers. And traditional magazines are now forced to compete with free apps such as Flipboard and Feedly, which mimic the experience of reading a magazine while also pulling in content from social media, blogs and other sources.The expectation now is that delivery of goods, whenever possible, should be instant and accessible from anywhere, Blau says. We have the App Store largely to thank for that.SellingWith a supermajority of iOS apps being offered for free — more than 90 percent, Blau says – companies have turned en masse to a business model in which customers pay for extra features. In this freemium model, “you hook the user with some amount of free content, [and] if they like it, that’s where the hook gets embedded and they’re going to pony up a dollar,” says Blau. In Hipstamatic, a photo-taking app, users might pay for special lenses and filters; in a mobile game, transactions might unlock extra levels or weapons.Pricey apps do exist, such as Traktor DJ, a professional disc-jockey app that sells for $4.99 on iPhone and $19.99 on iPad. But these are mostly niche apps with a user base that is willing to spend the money, Blau says. The freemium model reigns supreme. It’s also known as the “razorblade model” after the way men’s razors are sold cheaply, with replacement razors being expensive, but it was Apple that provided a platform on which this business model could flourish widely.Related: First Look: A Visual Tour of Apple’s iOS 7 for iPhoneMarketingWhen it comes to your marketing initiatives, the App Store has been a double-edged sword. While it created a new platform for advertising, it also created a new problem for brands, namely how to appear at or near the top of search results in Apple’s store, Blau says. The dynamic is similar to that of Google keyword searches — if you aren’t in the top five or 10 results, people will be much less likely to find you.”People will tell me an app’s name and I still can’t find it in many cases,” Mulpuru says. But while it can be hard to attract new users, apps are great customer loyalty tools. Mulpuru offers Pinterest and Houzz, an app for interior design and decorating ideas, as examples of how frequently updated content encourages users to check back regularly, making the app part of their daily life.”They have so much content, but they just move it around, and given that any session I have with them is maybe five minutes, they just need to move around the good content and that’s how I get exposed to more,” Mulpuru says. In this way, the company gets to drive engagement without spending too much time developing new content.Startup cultureThe App Store also revolutionized startup culture. Suddenly, three students in a dorm room or a couple of recent graduates could code an app and build a company on it, getting venture funding and millions of users along the way. The most spectacular success in this vein was Instagram. Stanford University graduates Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger’s app for sharing photos grew from 80 users to 1 million users within two months of its launch.But a phenomenon like Instagram is rare. Where Mulpuru sees the most opportunity is in the realm of “micropreneurs” — people with development skills, she says, “who can build a little something on the side and potentially make a nice side income from it.”Coders who have no desire to launch their own app have benefited too, as the App Store has driven demand for programming talent at companies in a wide range of industries. Says Mulpuru, “I think every parent should look at the App Store and think, ‘This is the future of wealth creation,’ and recognize how important programming is for a core curriculum at a very young age.”Related: Mobile App Marketing 101: How to Spread the Word About Your App Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now Enroll Now for Free Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience.last_img read more

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Helsinki Airport is the Best Airport in Northern Europe

first_img2018 Best in Northern Europe Heikki KoskiHelsinki Airport is the Best Airport in Northern EuropeHelsinki Airport has been voted the Best Airport in Northern Europe by passengers in the SKYTRAX World Airport Awards. The results were announced at Passenger Terminal EXPO in Stockholm, Sweden on 21 March 2018.”It is an honour to receive this award by passengers all around the world. It is the best way to verify that our hard work towards enhancing customer experience in Helsinki Airport is paying off. At the same time, I want to warmly thank our Finavia personnel and all of our partners here in Helsinki Airport; without their contribution, this result could not have been possible”, says Helsinki Airport Director Ville Haapasaari from Finavia.Finavia is constantly developing services at Helsinki Airport, keeping customers’ point of view always on the top of our minds. Currently, the airport is carrying out a 900 million euro development programme in order to prepare for serving 30 million passengers.“We want to move people as smoothly as possible. We do our best to ensure smooth travelling and high customer satisfaction – also in the future. We offer safe, reliable and a unique customer experience. I welcome everyone to feel the positive atmosphere of Helsinki Airport”, Haapasaari concludes.The 2018 World Airport Awards are based on 13.73 million airport survey questionnaires that were completed by over 100 nationalities of airport customers during the survey period. The survey operated from August 2017 to February 2018, covering more than 500 airports and evaluating traveller experiences across different airport service and product key performance indicators – from check-in, arrivals, transfers, shopping, security and immigration through to departure at the gate.We celebrate the award with our passengersOn Thursday, 22 March 2018, at 12-17, the airport will have an award celebration at departure gate 29. Passengers will have a chance to be photographed by a photo wall. One picture will end up to airport’s guestbook, one picture will travel with a passenger. In addition, some smoothies with wishes for a pleasant journey will be served: For smooth travelling!Helsinki Airport is the best connected airport in Northern Europe with 145 non-stop destinations all around the world by over 50 airlines. It is an important air traffic hub between Europe and Asia. To Asia, the number of direct routes totals 20 and the number of departures per week over 100. In 2017, Helsinki Airport served 18.9 million passengers, which was 9.9% more than the year before. In 2018, the airport expects to reach the 20 million passengers milestone.The SKYTRAX World Airport Awards are the most prestigious accolades for the airport industry, voted by customers in the largest, annual global airport customer satisfaction survey which has operated every year since 1999. The Awards are widely regarded as the quality benchmark of airport excellence for the world airport industry, assessing customer service and facilities across 550 airports. The survey and awards are independent of any airport control or input and represent an impartial benchmark of airport excellence and quality. The World Airport Awards are widely known as the Passengers Choice Awards. www.worldairportawards.comMore information on Helsinki Airport accoladesSource = Finavialast_img read more