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For impersonating an officer, he’ll play a real prisoner

By on January 26, 2021

first_img Mathews, 33, was sentenced this week to six years in jail for his multiple impersonations as a peace officer, fire marshal, Marine veteran, emergency medical technician, firefighter and constable.Judge John Stevens on Monday imposed sentence on Matthews, who pleaded guilty in 2017.At times during Harvey rescue efforts, Matthews wore a Houston Fire Department shirt, carried handcuffs and wore a holstered handgun. His personal vehicle, a black Chevrolet Impala with emergency lights in the front windshield, appeared to be an unmarked police vehicle. Staff reportBEAUMONT — For David Roy Matthews Jr., the aftermath of Hurricane and Tropical Storm Harvey last September provided the perfect backdrop for posing as a first-responder.But Texas law enforcement and the state courts didn’t play along. “We would like to recognize the excellent work of the DPS Troopers, who were dispatched from other regions of Texas to assist Jefferson County law enforcement during a very difficult time for our community,” said Assistant District Attorney Michael Morgan, who prosecuted the case.center_img Prosecutors said Matthews responded to several fire and EMS calls during Harvey while driving county vehicles and fire trucks, endangering the public and other emergency personnel.They said alert DPS troopers on special assignment to Jefferson County observed Matthews and became suspicious, discussed their suspicions with other officials who had worked with Matthews, and after questioning him and conducting a background check, discovered Matthews had a prior arrest in Jefferson Davis Parish, Louisiana, for false personation of a peace officer.last_img read more

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VDH COVID-19 Update: Asymptomatic cases younger and more common with more testing

By on December 31, 2020

first_imgHospitalized under investigation Number Contacts monitored 1,752(3 new) Currently hospitalized Daily Update on Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)September 30, 2020New information is in red and bold.This update is available online at healthvermont.gov/covid19(link is external)Click the “See the Latest Update” button.Please visit the Vermont Department of Health’s COVID-19 web and data pageshealthvermont.gov/covid19(link is external)Vermonters with COVID-19 and SymptomsNearly three in four Vermonters with COVID-19 experience symptoms. In our latest Weekly Data Summary(link is external) Spotlight, learn more about who experiences symptoms in Vermont versus who is asymptomatic. You can view data by sex, race and age, in addition to seeing how the number of cases with symptoms has changed over time.Time to Get Your Flu Shot!It’s more important than ever to get your flu shot this year ─ when both flu viruses and the new coronavirus may be spreading at the same time.There are many more unknowns this year, like how common it would be to get the coronavirus and the flu, or if having the flu makes you more susceptible to getting COVID-19. We also don’t know whether a surge in cases of COVID-19 and the flu could happen at the same time — overwhelming our health care system and putting people at risk.There is no shortage of flu vaccine this year. Many health care providers and pharmacies have doses available, and if they don’t yet, they will soon.Who should get a flu shot? Anyone over 6 months old, with rare exceptions. And it’s especially important for anyone in a high-risk group(link is external) or who has underlying health conditions.Where can I get my flu shot? Through your provider, your local pharmacy, or look for a clinic near you. If you don’t have insurance, reach out to your local health office.Find a flu shot at healthvermont.gov/flu(link is external).Return to School GuidanceAll schools are now in Step III of the safety and health guidance. Read the guidance for more details: Strong and Healthy Start: Safety and Health Guidance for Vermont Schools(link is external)Questions about what this change means? Read Strong and Healthy Start FAQ: Transitioning From Step II to Step III(link is external).Additional guidance includes:Mental Health: A Strong and Healthy Start: Social, Emotional and Mental Health Supports During COVID-19(link is external)Sports: Fall Sports Programs for the 2020-2021 School Year(link is external)Child care: Health Guidance for Child Care and Out of School Care(link is external)Find additional resources on our Schools, Colleges and Child Care Programs web page(link is external).COVID-19 Testing Data for Colleges/Universities and SchoolsPreK-12 Schools: A table of School-Based COVID-19 Transmission is now available at healthvermont.gov/currentactivity(link is external). The table is updated weekly.Colleges/Universities: The Department of Financial Regulation’s School Reopening web page(link is external) includes links to each Vermont college and university with information about their COVID-19 testing results.Case InformationCurrent COVID-19 Activity in VermontAs of 12 p.m. on September 30, 2020 Description 1 8,929 * Includes testing conducted at the Health Department Laboratory, commercial labs and other public health labs.+ Death occurring in persons known to have COVID-19. Death certificate may be pending. Hospitalization data is provided by the Vermont Healthcare Emergency Preparedness Coalition and is based on hospitals updating this information.Find more at the data dashboard: healthvermont.gov/currentactivity(link is external).Guidance for VermontersGet the information you need at our Frequently Asked Questions(link is external).If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1 or go to the hospital.If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19(link is external), call your health care provider.Maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet and wear a mask when near others(link is external).Traveler InformationVisit our Travel to Vermont(link is external) web page for continually updated information and guidance, including about quarantine requirements, testing, and to sign up with Sara Alert for symptom check reminders(link is external).The cross-state travel map(link is external) is now updated each Tuesday.Getting Tested for COVID-19Anyone can get tested, but not everyone needs to get tested.Talk with your health care provider If you think you should be tested for COVID-19.If you don’t have a provider, dial 2-1-1, or contact the nearest federally qualified health center(link is external) or one of Vermont’s free & referral clinics(link is external).Visit our testing web page(link is external) for more guidance and where to get tested if you do need it.Business GuidanceVisit the Agency of Commerce and Community Development’s website(link is external) for “Work Safe” guidance.Take Care of Your Emotional and Mental HealthIf you or someone you know is in crisis or needs emotional support, help is available 24/7:Call your local mental health crisis line(link is external). Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline(link is external) at 1-800-273-8255.Text VT to 741741 to talk with someone at the Crisis Text Line(link is external).For more information visit healthvermont.gov/suicide(link is external).Get self-help tips and connect to mental health services at COVID Support VT(link is external).See ways for Coping with Stress(link is external). For more information:COVID-19 health information, guidance and case data: healthvermont.gov/covid19(link is external)Governor’s actions: governor.vermont.gov/covid19response(link is external)The state’s modeling: dfr.vermont.gov/about-us/covid-19/modeling(link is external) 1,606 493 Total cases* 2 Total people recovered Deaths+ People completed monitoring Travelers monitored 41 People tested 58 162,727last_img read more

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Beyond the Brain

By on December 9, 2020

first_imgThe New York Times: It’s a pattern as old as time. Somebody makes an important scientific breakthrough, which explains a piece of the world. But then people get caught up in the excitement of this breakthrough and try to use it to explain everything.This is what’s happening right now with neuroscience. The field is obviously incredibly important and exciting. From personal experience, I can tell you that you get captivated by it and sometimes go off to extremes, as if understanding the brain is the solution to understanding all thought and behavior.…The first basic problem is that regions of the brain handle a wide variety of different tasks. As Sally Satel and Scott O. Lilienfeld explained in their compelling and highly readable book, “Brainwashed: The Seductive Appeal of Mindless Neuroscience,” you put somebody in an fMRI machine and see that the amygdala or the insula lights up during certain activities. But the amygdala lights up during fear, happiness, novelty, anger or sexual arousal (at least in women). The insula plays a role in processing trust, insight, empathy, aversion and disbelief. So what are you really looking at?Read the whole story: The New York Times More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more

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Kids of Helicopter Parents Are Sputtering Out

By on December 8, 2020

first_imgSlate:Academically overbearing parents are doing great harm. So says Bill Deresiewicz in his groundbreaking 2014 manifesto Excellent Sheep: The Miseducation of the American Elite and the Way to a Meaningful Life. “[For students] haunted their whole lives by a fear of failure—often, in the first instance, by their parents’ fear of failure,” writes Deresiewicz, “the cost of falling short, even temporarily, becomes not merely practical, but existential.” Those whom Deresiewicz calls “excellent sheep” I call the “existentially impotent.” From 2006 to 2008, I served on Stanford University’s mental health task force, which examined the problem of student depression and proposed ways to teach faculty, staff, and students to better understand, notice, and respond to mental health issues. As dean, I saw a lack of intellectual and emotional freedom—this existential impotence—behind closed doors. The “excellent sheep” were in my office. Often brilliant, always accomplished, these students would sit on my couch holding their fragile, brittle parts together, resigned to the fact that these outwardly successful situations were their miserable lives.Read the whole story: Slate More of our Members in the Media >last_img read more

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NEWS SCAN: Yellow fever in Uganda, imported-food safety, breast-feeding report

By on November 18, 2020

first_imgJan 20, 2011More yellow fever reported in Uganda as vaccination launch nearsA yellow fever vaccination campaign targeting 905,000 people will start Jan 22 in northern Uganda, where 226 probable cases with 53 deaths have been reported in 12 districts, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in a statement yesterday. The agency said just five cases have been confirmed by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but 226 cases compatible with the clinical case definition, including 53 deaths, have been reported. The outbreak, which began in October, is the country’s first since 1972. A report last week had put the number of cases at 190, with 48 deaths. On Jan 4 Uganda requested 1 million doses of vaccine from the International Coordinating Group on Yellow Fever Vaccine Provision, and the doses from the emergency stockpile were shipped on Jan 11. The WHO statement did not predict how long the vaccination campaign will take.Jan 19 WHO statementSurvey: Americans question safety of foods from China As the US government prepares to increase oversight of imported foods, a survey says Americans are most concerned about the safety of foods form China, according to a Reuters report. In the online survey of 571 people, respondents were asked to name the two countries or regions they perceived as having the least food safety oversight. Eighty-one percent picked China as one of the two, and 51% picked Mexico. Further, 48% chose Africa, 27% picked South America, and 11% chose the United States, the story said. The survey was conducted for Reuters by SupermarketGuru.com. In other findings, when people were asked to name two regions whose food products they avoid buying for safety reasons, three-quarters picked China, 42% picked Africa, 41% chose Mexico, and 24% said South America. Forty-nine percent of respondents said they believe organic and kosher foods are safer than most. The foods regarded as most dangerous were poultry (including chicken) and lettuce. The food safety law passed in December calls for the Food and Drug Administration and importers to increase scrutiny of imported foods.Jan 19 Reuters storySurgeon general report touts breast-feeding’s disease-fighting roleCiting low levels of breast-feeding at 6 months and the health benefits of the practice, US Surgeon General Regina Benjamin released a report today that outlines steps for removing obstacles to breast-feeding. The 88-page report, Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding, said that breast-feeding protects babies from infections and adverse conditions, including diarrhea, ear infections, pneumonia, asthma, and obesity. Breast-feeding can also lower cancer risk in mothers. Benjamin said that women who want to breast-feed may face many barriers, such as a lack of support, lack of role models, insufficient information, and a lack of time and privacy at work. “Whether you’re a clinician, a family member, a friend, or an employer, you can play an important part in helping mothers who want to breastfeed,” she said in a news release today from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The release said that while 75% of mothers start out breast-feeding, the level drops to 13% by the time the baby is 6 months old. Rates are particularly low among African-American women. Examples in the report for overcoming barriers include having communities expand mother-to-mother support programs, improving training for healthcare personnel on how to care for breast-feeding moms, and encouraging employers to establish paid maternity leave and high-quality lactation-support programs in the workplace.Jan 20 HHS press releaselast_img read more

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Governor Appoints Two Tourism Commissioners

By on October 19, 2020

first_imgSANTA FE ― Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has appointed Tania Armenta, President & CEO of Visit Albuquerque and reappointed Belia Alvarez, Director of Community Relations for Heritage Hotels and Resorts, to serve on the Tourism Commission. Prior to her role as Corporate Director of Community Relations with Heritage Hotels & Resorts, Alvarez also served as General Manager and Regional General Manager within the company. Alvarez commits her time to numerous leadership organizations, including the Las Cruces Hispanic Chamber Board, New Mexico Hospitality Association Board of Directors, New Mexico State University School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management Advisory Board, Ambassadors for Spaceport America, and the Advisory Board for Visit Las Cruces. Alvarez previously served as Chair for the former Convention & Visitor’s Bureau Board (currently Visit Las Cruces) from 2012-2014. Alvarez is a Las Cruces native. “Both Tania and Belia are incredibly dedicated professionals who will add new perspective to the commission,” Tourism Secretary Jen Paul Schroer said. “The New Mexico Tourism Department and the tourism industry will be well-served with Tania and Belia on this commission.” STATE News: Alvarez’s professional career in hospitality and tourism spans 23 years. As Corporate Director of Community Relations, Alvarez is responsible for preserving and cultivating cultural partnerships and recognition, managing statewide community relationships and advocating for collaborative opportunities to bring awareness to New Mexico’s culture and tourism. Armenta and Alvarez will each serve 7-year terms on the 7-person commission. With the appointment of Armenta and the reappointment of Alvarez, the Tourism Commission is now represented by three women, the most since 2013. Armenta was 1 of 12 women recently featured on Corporate & Incentive Travel’s cover story titled “CVB Leaders: Remarkable Women Share Insights and Wisdom on Leading a CVB,” along with being named one of Smart Meetings “2016 Smart Women in Meetings” award recipients. Armenta is also a former recipient of the “40 Under Forty” awards by Albuquerque Business First. “I am truly honored to be reappointed to the Tourism Commission by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham,” Alvarez said. “Tourism remains an important economic driver for New Mexico, with continuous year-over-year growth.  I remain committed to our remarkably successful New Mexico True campaign and will work diligently to promote and protect the culturally unique tourism resources that we call our own.” “I am very honored to be appointed by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham to serve as a member of the New Mexico Tourism Commission,” Armenta said. “Tourism is one of New Mexico’s most effective economic development strategies, and we have tremendous opportunities for increased growth and success in our immediate future.” Visit Albuquerque President & CEO Tania Armenta Heritage Hotels and Resorts, Director of Community Relations Belia AlvarezArmenta’s time with Visit Albuquerque spans 20 years, and she has served as President & CEO of Visit Albuquerque for the past three years. Armenta serves on several national and local boards including the US Travel Association’s Destinations Council, Destinations International DMAP Board and The Jennifer Riordan Foundation Advisory Board, and the New Mexico Hospitality Association Board of Directors as Board Chair. last_img read more

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ABP’s AMEP Judicial Review Denied

By on October 6, 2020

first_imgThe High Court has refused the application by ABP seeking a judicial review of the Government’s decision Secretary of State for Transport to grant a Development Control Order for the AMEP project.In her decision Mrs Justice Patterson found against ABP on all the grounds it put forward in applying for Judicial Review, describing their claim as “unarguable.”Peter Stephenson, Able’s Executive Chairman, commented:“Their claims surrounding the so-called Killingholme Triangle…the small area of land which is needed for AMEP…have now been rejected by the hugely detailed and lengthy planning process, overseen by senior planning inspectors, a Government Minister, a Joint Parliamentary Committee—and now by the High Court.’“Every other interest on the Humber—including the Local Enterprise Partnership, the local business community, local authorities, local Members of Parliament and their constituents—have looked on in despair as time after time a development of such importance to the area has been delayed and put in jeopardy by the actions of a single company.“ABP can now seek to challenge Mrs Justice Patterson’s comprehensive rejection of their arguments through an oral hearing but that would once again delay AMEP and yet again highlight that ABP are more concerned with defending their near monopoly position on the Humber against the interests of the whole region and the UK for that matter.”On the other hand, ABP expressed disappointment by saying they will “carefully consider the reasons given before commenting further.”According to the developer, the GBP 450-million project is set to create over 4,000 direct jobs and cover an area of around 900 acres.Image: ablelast_img read more

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Volga-Dnepr appoints three

By on September 29, 2020

first_imgThe new global directors have been added in order to spearhead the continued growth of the airline’s transport and logistics solutions in the aerospace, oil and gas, and humanitarian sectors, said Volga-Dnepr.All three global directors are based at Volga-Dnepr’s US office in Houston, and will be responsible for the introduction of the charter sales and marketing corporate business model and management structure for their respective market segments. This will include building industry-based teams in Volga-Dnepr’s regional offices.”We have seen sustained growth in these three sectors over many years and have developed strong working partnerships with leading companies and organisations, that value our transport and logistics expertise,” said Dennis Gliznoutsa, vice president, sales at Volga-Dnepr Airlines.”Axel, Fayçal and Colon are already well-known and highly respected in their respective sectors. These appointments will enable them to focus their energies and share their knowledge and expertise in a way that continues to add the greatest value for our customers.”      www.volga-dnepr.comlast_img read more

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Investigations continue at the critical interface

By on September 28, 2020

first_imgINTERNATIONAL: ‘We cannot ignore the management of the interface’, insisted Semih Kalay of TTCI. Addressing delegates at the Contact Mechanics 2009 conference in Firenze, he pointed out that a better understanding of the complex forces at play in the contact patch between wheel and rail translated directly into maintenance and renewal costs, which for larger railways could amount to ‘very substantial sums’.Hosted by Prof Andrea Bracciali from the University of Firenze, the eighth International Conference on Wheel/Rail Interaction attracted more than 230 delegates from 27 countries, with 149 papers presented over three full days. Academics, suppliers and operators from across the rail sector came together to share their work and discuss their findings. Topics for the 30 parallel sessions ranged from wheel profiles and rail wear through contact forces and friction management to adhesion, noise and environmental impact. As chairman of the international committee, Peter Mutton from Australia’s Monash University pointed out that the many past papers represented ‘a huge body of work’ which showed ‘just how much has been learned since 1982’. With this in mind, he explained, the focus has expanded from current research to consider industry challenges which could shape the need for future research work. Emphasising this need for closer links between research and application, Roger Enblom of Stockholm’s KTH pointed out that ‘we are living in a market environment’, which had led — in his case — to expectations for increased performance of wheels, with a particular focus on the cost of maintenance and renewals. Thus KTH is working closely with Bombardier’s Västerås plant to try and predict future patterns of wheel wear. Enblom pointed to the challenges posed by interoperability, where railways had adopted different rail and wheel profiles, and the introduction by infrastructure managers of differential access charges dependent upon the track forces imposed by different vehicle types. Making the case for condition-based maintenance, Daniel Magnus of US-based KLD Labs also emphasised the need to ‘treat the wheel and rail as a unit’, using as an example an investigation into flange-climbing derailments caused by the operation on the same route of two vehicle types with different wheel profiles. Rolling contact fatigue continues to drive research into wheel and rail steels, preventive grinding and other maintenance strategies, as well as fundamental research to improve understanding of the mechanisms which initiate and propagate cracks. Many of these areas are being addressed in the EU-funded Innotrack research programme, which is due to conclude at the end of this year. Meanwhile, new phenomena continue to emerge, and Stuart Grassie highlighted the recent appearance of ‘STUDs’ — or Squat-Type Unidentified Defects. These look similar to squats on the railhead, but occur in different places and do not seem to propagate in the same way, he suggested. Failure to identify correctly between potentially harmless and dangerous defects could pose a safety risk on the one hand or unnecessary increases in maintenance costs on the other, he warned, urging the need for further investigation. The next CM conference is to be hosted by Southwest Jiaotong University of Chengdu in September 2012.last_img read more

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JDTAN Announces Annual General Meeting on September 20

By on September 27, 2020

first_imgThe Jamaica Diaspora Taskforce Action Network (JDTAN), the sector-based network with members across 21 countries, will host its Annual General Meeting (AGM) under the theme Reflections from Our Partners: Diaspora Engagement for Jamaica’s Growth and Development. The JDTAN AGM takes place on Sunday, September 20, 2020, at 4 PM US ET and 3 PM Jamaica time and will be moderated by Dervan Malcolm, popular Power 106 Broadcaster of the Saturday morning show, Diaspora Live. Lesleyann Samuel, Chair of  the AGM added that “JDTAN has invited these various partners that Taskforces have collaborated with over the years to share their thoughts on the ways the Diaspora has tangibly impacted their mandates and to suggest additional ways to collaborate in achieving Jamaican Vision 2030.” The AGM is open to the public go to, www.JDTAN.org/AGM2020  for details. Other speakers include: Dr Robert Runcie,  Jamaican Superintendent of Broward County Public Schools; Dr. Carey Wallace, Executive Director of the Tourism Enhancement Fund; Dr. Hansel Fletcher, Loma Linda University; Dr. Elizabeth Molina, Broward College; Dr. Rosalea Hamilton, CEO of the LASCO Chin Foundation; Charles Clayton, Program Director, Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ); Mary McLaughlin, CEO of the Trees That Feed Foundation and Jasford Gabriel, President of the Jamaica Teachers Association (JTA.) “Mr. Jarret has a special relationship with the Diaspora and we are elated to have him as our Keynote speaker. The Diaspora movement has come a long way and he has been a major part of the transformation. We will learn from his broad experience with Diaspora matters, I’ve heard him present; He truly understands Diaspora engagement,” remarked Leo Gilling, Chairman, JDTAN. The keynote speaker for the AGM is none other than Chief Executive Officer of the Jamaica National Group – Earl Jarrett.last_img read more

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