Province Takes New Step to Fight Crime

first_imgThe province is making sure crime does not pay. Justice Minister Ross Landry has created a unit that will take possession of property acquired through, or used in, unlawful activities. “This initiative sends a strong message, that unlawful activity doesn’t pay,” said Mr. Landry. “This is an excellent opportunity for government and law enforcement agencies to fight crime together in our communities.” The Civil Forfeiture Unit has a manager and a lawyer. The unit receives cases referred from law enforcement agencies where there is evidence of wrong doing but criminal charges are not laid, such as bootlegging or selling stolen property. “The Civil Forfeiture Act is another tool to address illegitimate activity in our community,” said Chief Frank Beazley of Halifax Regional Police. “This act will take the profit out of crime, ensure people are not benefitting from criminal activity and enhance community safety.” The unit is based in Halifax, but will serve all of Nova Scotia. Revenues from the program will fund the Civil Forfeiture Unit and provide financial support for crime prevention and victim services programs. “Removing proceeds of crime and assets from criminals sends a clear message to those who are trying to live off of criminal activity,” said RCMP Supt. Brian Brennan. “The RCMP embraces this new legislation and looks forward to establishing strong relationships with the provincial Civil Forfeiture Unit to make an impact on criminal activity, quickly and effectively.” Nova Scotia will soon be able to share information with British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Ontario and New Brunswick, which have similar civil forfeiture legislation. The provinces are set to enter into a memorandum of understanding that will allow them to share case-related information to strengthen the effectiveness of their civil forfeiture units. “This program is meant to deter criminals from engaging in illegal activity,” said Mr. Landry. “Victims of these crimes can rest assured, knowing that people are not benefitting from the crime.” In 2009, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that government can freeze assets and attempt to take the profit out of unlawful activity to compensate victims and fund other programs. In Nova Scotia, all property forfeited will be sold through standard government procedures by the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. In cases where charges are laid, and property is not seized by an enforcement agency or forfeited by the criminal court, the Civil Forfeiture Unit will have the ability to seize the property and seek forfeiture in Civil Court. Forfeiture means transferring the property from the owner to the Crown. It does not result in the conviction of a person. The unit will begin reviewing cases immediately. The Civil Forfeiture Act and Assets Management and Disposition Act, the legislation that makes the unit possible, came into effect April 29.last_img read more

ZEE5 looks at Israel for AIbased solutions ties up with Applicaster

first_imgTel Aviv,: ZEE5, the OTT destination and digital entertainment platform of media and entertainment major ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Ltd., has announced a strategic partnership with Applicaster, one of the leading global cloud platforms for media app development and management in the media space. The collaboration inked last week in the presence of Pavan Kapoor, the Indian Ambassador to Israel, will focus on redesigning the entire interface of the ZEE5 app, given the evolving trends and preferences of the new-age OTT viewer. Also Read – SC declines Oil Min request to stay sharing of documents The collaboration is one among many that ZEE5 is undertaking with the Israeli startup’s excelling in bringing in Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools to enhance user experience and allow the streaming service to make its platform interactive. More that a dozen Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) have already been inked by ZEE5 with thw Israeli company focusing on use of deep technology to gauge user behaviour and generate content best suited to a user’s needs. Also Read – World suffering ‘synchronized slowdown’, says new IMF chief The partnership between ZEE5 and Applicaster will ensure a high-quality entertainment experience to the former’s 61.5 million monthly active user base. Via the partnership, Applicaster will work with ZEE5 to enhance the latter’s user interface and experience, leveraging its state-of-the-art technology and industry knowledge on the evolving trends across the globe. ZEE5 has been consistently focussed on enriching the platform with multiple tools which can enhance the experience for the viewer. Applicaster will also enhance ZEE5’s over functionality offering a seamless content viewing experience to the viewers. “India is the world’s fourth largest app market and one of the most crowded one for OTT players. ZEE5 has been a frontrunner in bringing the best-in-class experience for subscribers seeking entertainment content in multiple Indian languages,” Tarun Katial, CEO, ZEE5 India, said. “And today we have become the first to harness the capabilities of Israeli tech startups and their expertise in the mobile entertainment space. With the warming up of relations between the two advanced countries, we are confident of building a winning proposition for all involved. “Our journey over the past year has given us immense insights in terms of the changing behaviour of OTT viewers. This knowledge complemented by the technological prowess of Applicaster will result in a delightful experience for the ZEE5 viewers the world-over,” Katial added. Applicaster is a world-leading cloud-based platform for app development and management, providing the tools and insights needed to own and engage audiences across mobile and connected TV platforms. It has successfully developed and enhanced applications for some of the finest news and media global brands like DirectTV and Televisa. ZEE5 is home to 1 lakh hours of On Demand Content and more than 80 live TV channels. With over 3,500 films, over 500 TV shows, more than 4,000 music videos, LIVE TV Channels across 12 languages, ZEE5 provides one of largest content pool for its viewers in India and abroad. The platform also offers features like 11 navigational languages, content download option, seamless video playback and Voice Search.last_img read more

Van attack looks unrelated to national security threat level unchanged Goodale

first_imgOTTAWA – There remains no information to warrant a change in Canada’s risk level, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale reiterated Monday following what he described as a “horrendous” midday van attack in Toronto that killed 10 pedestrians and injured 15 others.Goodale was on hand for a news conference in the northern Toronto neighbourhood where the deadly attack took place earlier in the day — and where police revealed both the identity of the driver of the van and that the death toll had reached double digits.“The events that happened on the street behind us are horrendous, but they do not appear to be connected in any way to national security, based on the information available at this time,” he said.Goodale and Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland happened to be in the city Monday for a meeting of G7 foreign and security ministers when news emerged of the incident, which took place without warning on a crowded city sidewalk under brilliant spring sunshine.He told an earlier briefing with reporters that the precise details of what had happened, as well as the motive behind the “attack,” were still unknown, and he confirmed Canada’s risk level would remain unchanged.“There is no information available to me at the present time that would lead us to conclude that there should be a change in risk level.”Not long after the incident and not far from the scene, a man seen standing near a badly damaged white rental van was taken into custody following a dramatic standoff with police that was captured on video by a bystander.During the evening news conference, Toronto police Chief Mark Saunders identified the man as Alek Minassian, 25, of Richmond Hill, Ont., but said it was still too early to speak of a motive.“We are looking very strongly to what the exact motivation was for this particular incident to take place,” Saunders said.Canada’s current threat level is medium, where it has been since October 2014, when a gunman killed a sentry at the National War Memorial in downtown Ottawa before storming Parliament Hill, where he died in a hail of gunfire.Both Goodale and Freeland expressed admiration for police and first responders on the scene and offered sympathies to the victims and their families.“I think all of our hearts go out to the people hurt in this incident and to their families and loved ones,” Freeland said. “It’s a very sad moment.”In a statement Monday night, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau offered his condolences to the loved ones of those who were killed.“We should all feel safe walking in our cities and communities,” Trudeau said. “We are monitoring this situation closely, and will continue working with our law enforcement partners around the country to ensure the safety and security of all Canadians.”The prime minister also thanked first responders “who managed this extremely difficult situation with courage and professionalism.”“They faced danger without hesitation, and their efforts no doubt saved lives and prevented further injuries,” he said.News of the incident sent shockwaves through the House of Commons, with many politicians and staffers closely monitoring social media for updates. Police provided little detail through the afternoon, adding to the ongoing sense of confusion and concern as the hours passed.Ali Ehsassi, MP for the Willowdale riding where the incident occurred, said there were many pedestrians in the area at the time.“It’s a very busy area,” he said, adding he did not know any reason why the area might have been targeted. “(I’m) very much shaken up, as you can imagine, and just been glued to my phone just trying to obtain as much information as I possibly can.”Ehsassi said his own home is just two minutes away from the Yonge Street scene. He shared condolences for his neighbours and constituents.“My heart goes out to them. They’re in my heart, they’re in my thoughts and I’m very much looking forward to heading back home as soon as possible.”Earlier in the day, Goodale said he understands there are many questions that remain unanswered, but said law enforcement is working hard to get as much information out as quickly as possible.“We cannot come to any firm conclusions at this stage. The police are conducting their thorough investigation to determine exactly what happened and why it happened.”last_img read more

Noah Cyrus Wants You To Boycott The Circus

first_imgJust days before Ringling Bros. arrives for its opening night in her hometown of Nashville, 13-year-old Noah Cyrus is urging the city’s school board — with a written and video appeal — to boycott the circus.Video: Noah Cyrus Calls For Boycott Of The Circus“Ringling routinely gives discounted tickets to schools, including Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools, in order to increase its profits,” she writes in a letter. “The only thing that kids learn from a circus performance is that it’s acceptable to bully animals for human entertainment. That’s a terrible lesson that should never come with the school’s endorsement.”Cyrus also stars in a new video targeted toward teens and tweens that reveals that circuses beat elephants and tigers to force them to perform. She hopes her young fans will say no whenever their friends, family members, or teachers suggest that they take a trip to the circus.“We all know how awful bullies are, and circuses bully animals every day,” Cyrus says in the video. “Elephants used in circuses are forced to perform tricks by trainers who beat them and jab them with metal hooks. . . . And as for tigers—they get whipped when they don’t do exactly what the trainers want.” She adds, “You have the power to stop this cruelty by refusing to go to circuses and by telling your friends and family why.”The abuse starts early for elephants at Ringling: PETA has obtained compelling photos taken inside Ringling’s breeding facility that expose how baby elephants are stretched out, slammed to the ground, gouged with bullhooks, and shocked with electric prods. In 2011, Ringling Bros. paid the largest fine in circus history — $270,000 — for violations of the Animal Welfare Act.Known for her film voiceover work and her appearances with sister Miley on Hannah Montana, Cyrus joins a growing list of celebrities — including Alec Baldwin, Edie Falco, Jada Pinkett Smith, Cloris Leachman, and Wilmer Valderrama — who have teamed up with PETA to speak out against circuses that abuse animals.For more information, please visit PETAKids.com.Source:PETAlast_img read more

Nunavuts failing grade on climate change sign of greater problem

first_imgKent Driscoll APTN NewsNunavut is not doing enough to prepare for climate change according to the latest report by the Auditor General of Canada.“The impacts of climate change are visible across Nunavut. We found that the Government of Nunavut was not adequately prepared to respond to these impacts,” said Jim McKenzie from the auditor general’s office.If Nunavut is not ready, then why not? After all, the government put a plan in place in 2014.“Human resource capacity challenges within the government and those make it difficult to sustain effort and attention,” said McKenzie.This is nothing new for Nunavut residents.In the last decade the auditor general’s office has issued reports on social workers, child safety, justice and jails. All of them found major problems.And each time the Nunavut government agreed and promised to make changes.But those changes don’t happen.One reason is there isn’t enough people to get the jobs done with 27 per cent of government jobs currently vacant.The auditor general’s office did suggest a way to get out of the understaffing cycle: pick fewer things and do them right.“I think it’s important, because resources are limited, that they try not to do everything,” said McKenzie.kdriscoll@aptn.calast_img read more

Catch limits increase for key West Coast groundfish species

first_imgPORTLAND, Ore. — Federal officials said Tuesday they are increasing catch limits for several species of West Coast groundfish that were severely depleted more than a dozen years ago, posing a threat to the commercial and sports fishing industries.Limits for yelloweye rockfish will more than double, while substantial increases will be allowed for California scorpionfish, bocaccio and Pacific Ocean perch, the National Marine Fisheries Service said.Those species have recovered enough to allow for the greatest expansion of a West Coast fishery in years. The formal announcement of the revised catch limits will be published Wednesday and the changes go into effect on Jan. 1, the first day of the new fishing season.Fishing income in California, Oregon and Washington could increase $60 million because of the changes, with the potential for 900 new jobs and at least 200,000 more angler trips a year, according to a preliminary report.“It’ll actually allow us to fish,” said Tom Marking, a recreational fisherman from Eureka, California.“Right now, there are a lot of places you just avoid because they’re known as yelloweye hot spots. You just stay away from them. If they allow us to go to 30 fathoms or 40 fathoms or all depths, it’ll allow the fleet to spread out.”Between 1999 and 2002, nine West Coast groundfish stocks were declared overfished as surveys documented declining numbers.Because more than 90 total groundfish species share the same habitat, anglers fishing for a permitted species risked also catching restricted fish and exceeding the overall limit — a mistake that could mean an end to the fishing season for that particular species.The limits devastated the fishing industry along the West Coast. Many businesses went under and tensions between the industry and federal regulators ran high for years.“Back then, one boat could catch all the quota for one species in one day,” said Jason Cope, a research fisheries biologist at the National Marine Fisheries Service. “There was a lot of avoidance, a lot of places you couldn’t go and probably a lot of paranoia. It was a lot of kind of walking on eggshells.”Improved population numbers mean there’s now a buffer for such mistakes and anglers can go to places they haven’t fished in years without as much worry, he said.Key to these changes is the recovery of the yelloweye rockfish, one of several species of rock fish that were in trouble just 15 years ago.The combined annual catch limit for the yelloweye will increase from 20 metric tons to 48 metric tons in 2019, although regulators could begin to make adjustments to fishing restrictions when the catch approaches 39 metric tons to allow room for error.Anglers will be able to fish at greater depths and in locations that were previously off-limits. One immediate effect will see fewer fishing boats crowded near the shore where anglers were less likely to net the overfished species.Several other species of groundfish have already recovered to levels that have allowed greater catch limits. Those species include petrale sole, widow rockfish and canary rockfish.There are more than 65 species of rockfish off the West Coast from Alaska to California. Some types can live up 150 to 200 years, Cope said, and they give live birth.John Holloway, a member of the Pacific Fisheries Management Council, which recommended the changes, said the increased catch limit will be transformative for the industry.“This will basically affect all the fishing sectors to some degree or another,” he said. “Every fishing sector … runs up against yellow eye rockfish, including the trawl fleets and all that.”___Follow Gillian Flaccus on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/gflaccusGillian Flaccus, The Associated Presslast_img read more

Finnish official named to head advisory group for UN Peacebuilding Fund

The Peacebuilding Fund, launched last year, is a multi-year standing trust fund that has an initial funding target of $250 million and so far has collected deposits worth $143.8 million from donor countries.It has approved grants of more than $46 million to 19 projects in Burundi and Sierra Leone, the two countries currently under consideration by the Peacebuilding Commission, and also $700,000 in emergency funding to support dialogue between opposing forces in divided Côte d’Ivoire.Ms. Rasi – currently Under-Secretary of State for Development in Finland – and the other nine members of the Peacebuilding Fund’s Advisory Group are tasked with providing advice and oversight of the Fund’s performance and management and the speed and appropriateness of its resource allocations. The members are independent and appointed for two-year periods.The other members are: Paulo Roberto Campos Tarrisse da Fontoura (Brazil), Wu Gang (China), Nataša Mikuš (Croatia), Mounir Zahran (Egypt), Yukio Takasu (Japan), Vidar Helgesen (Norway), Joseph Mutuboba (Rwanda), Dan Smith (the United Kingdom) and Carlos Pascual (the United States). 5 September 2007Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has designated Finland’s Marjatta Rasi to serve as the first chair of the advisory group to the United Nations fund set up to help meet the immediate needs of countries emerging from conflict. read more

Neymar signs 5year deal with PSG in worldrecord transfer

A Sport newspaper frontpage is displayed with a picture of FC Barcelona’s Neymar and a headline reading in Spanish “Pay and go away”, as journalists wait for his arrival at the Barcelona airport in Prat Llobregat, Spain, Thursday, Aug. 3, 2017. Neymar has told Barcelona that he plans to leave the club, with a blockbuster move to Paris Saint-Germain seemingly imminent. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez) by Samuel Petrequin And Joseph Wilson, The Associated Press Posted Aug 3, 2017 11:30 am MDT Last Updated Aug 3, 2017 at 5:20 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email PARIS – Six years after taking over perennial underachiever Paris Saint-Germain, the French club’s wealthy owners finally got what they wanted by hiring Neymar — a player they believe will bring them Champions League glory.The Brazil star became the most expensive player in soccer history after completing his blockbuster transfer from Barcelona for 222 million euros ($262 million) on Thursday. By paying the release clause in his contract, PSG shattered the world transfer record to sign arguably one of the top three best attacking players in the game, alongside Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.The previous transfer record had been set a year ago when Manchester United paid 105 million euros (then $116 million) to bring Paul Pogba back from Juventus.Ironically, the 25-year-old Neymar signed a five-year contract with the French league side just five months after playing a decisive role as Barcelona produced a comeback that made Champions League history – at PSG’s expense.Having lost their first leg match 4-0 in France, Barcelona was trailing 5-3 on aggregate in the 88th minute in Spain, only for Neymar to score twice in the final minutes before Sergi Roberto’s winner in added time sealed a humiliating exit from the Round of 16 for PSG.Next season, it will be different.“Paris Saint-Germain’s ambition attracted me to the club, along with the passion and the energy this brings,” Neymar said in comments released by PSG. “I played four seasons in Europe and I feel ready to take the challenge. From today, I will do everything I can to help my new teammates, to open up new horizons for my club and to bring happiness to its millions of supporters around the world.”PSG would certainly welcome the kind of success that Neymar enjoyed in Spain.In his four seasons there, Neymar scored 105 goals as Barcelona won the Champions League, Club World Cup, two Spanish league titles and Copa del Rey three times.Now he will look to emerge from the shadow of five-time world player of the year Messi at Barcelona, becoming the biggest star in the French league in a team without the track record of success to match his former club.While Barcelona has lifted the European Cup five times and won the FIFA Club World Cup three times, PSG is yet to win either prestigious competition.Since Qatar Sports Investments took over the club in June 2011, PSG has spent several hundred million dollars on top-class players — including the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Marco Verratti and Edinson Cavani — in its effort to build a team capable of winning Europe’s top club competition.But the big names were not enough to bring success on the continental stage, and PSG has yet to make it through the quarterfinals of the Champions League under its Qatari owners.Maybe that’s about to change.“I am extremely happy to join Paris Saint-Germain,” Neymar said. “Since I arrived in Europe, the club has always been one of the most competitive and most ambitious. And the biggest challenge, what most motivated me to join my new teammates, is to help the club to conquer the titles that their fans want.”It’s a mission that is clearly shared by the club’s top management.“Neymar Jr is today one of the very best players in world football. His winning mentality, strength of character and sense of leadership have made him into a great player,” PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi said. “He will bring a very positive energy to this club.“In six years, we have built a very ambitious project that has already taken us to the highest level of national and European football. Today, with the arrival of Neymar Jr, I am convinced that we will come even closer, with the support of our faithful fans, to realizing our greatest dreams.”PSG’s announcement put an end to a saga that started about two weeks ago with rumours of his possible transfer, though the club had already tried to lure him to the City of Light last summer.Neymar is expected in Paris on Friday and will hold a news conference early in the afternoon, PSG said. He might make his debut on Saturday when PSG starts its new league campaign against promoted Amiens at the Parc des Princes.Not surprisingly, his transfer has not gone down well in Spain.In a statement, Barcelona said “the club will pass on to UEFA the details of the above operation so that they can determine the disciplinary responsibilities that may arise from this case.”The comment followed a claim by Spanish league president Javier Tebas on Wednesday that Neymar’s move would break Financial Fair Play rules introduced by UEFA, European soccer’s ruling body.Barcelona did all it could to stop Neymar from leaving, and had vowed to complain to UEFA if his seemingly untouchable release clause was triggered.The payment of the release clause was the second attempt Neymar’s representatives had made on Thursday to break his bond with Barcelona. Earlier in the day, his lawyer Juan de Dios Crespo had tried to deposit the enormous sum at the Spanish league’s offices in Madrid, but he was turned away.Tebas had told Spanish sports daily AS that he wouldn’t let the league act as an intermediary to an operation that he, like Barcelona, believed violated UEFA’s FFP rules. He had called PSG a “state-supported club.” The club’s Qatari owners are closely linked to the energy-rich ruling family.___Joseph Wilson reported from Barcelona. Neymar signs 5-year deal with PSG in world-record transfer read more

France launches inquiry into racist online attacks after mixedrace teen chosen to

first_img Image: Shutterstock/ReflectedLight Feb 23rd 2018, 7:47 PM France launches inquiry into racist online attacks after mixed-race teen chosen to play Joan of Arc “Joan of Arc was white,” read one Twitter post. “We are white and proud of being white, don’t change our history.” She will deliver our French history to everyone, as have previous Joans before her.Orleans mayor Olivier Carre also rushed to the teenager’s defence.“In 2018 as for 589 years, the people of Orleans will celebrate Joan of Arc played by a young woman who shows her courage, faith and vision,” he wrote on Twitter. But the announcement has been met with a flurry of posts on Twitter and on far-right websites branding her nomination an exercise in “diversity propaganda” and an attempt to re-write French history.“Joan of Arc was white,” read one Twitter post. “We are white and proud of being white, don’t change our history.”Another comment, on anti-Muslim site Resistance Republicaine, complained: “Next year, Joan of Arc will be in a burqa.”Women’s equality minister Marlene Schiappa stepped into the row on Wednesday, offering her support to the student.“The racist hatred of fascists has no place in the French republic,” she tweeted.France has now opened an inquiry into incitement to racial hatred as a result of the online criticism, according to the Guardian.‘Chosen for who she is’Benedicte Baranger, president of the committee in charge of picking a girl for the honour, said she was saddened by some of the reactions.“This girl was chosen for who she is, an interesting person and a lively spirit,” Baranger said. Mathilde has all these qualities.Aside from her school work, Gamassou is a student of opera at the prestigious Orleans Conservatory and is learning to fence.The end of the brutal six-month Siege of Orleans was a turning point in the Hundred Years War between France and England and the first major French victory.Over the course of the war between 1337 and 1453, England lost nearly all its territories on the other side of the channel.Joan of Arc, who was burned alive at the stake in 1431, is a heroine for many in France but is particularly venerated by the far-right as a symbol of national resistance.© – AFP 2018Read: North Korean general should be ‘hanged in the streets’ not going to Olympics, says S. Korean politicianRead: Donald Trump says armed officer who didn’t confront school shooter may be ‘a coward’ http://jrnl.ie/3869131 Short URL A statue of Joan of Arc outside Reims Cathedral in northern France. Image: Shutterstock/ReflectedLight She responds to our four criteria – a resident of Orleans for 10 years, a student in an Orleans high school, and a Catholic who gives her time to others. 152 Comments center_img FRANCE’S STATE PROSECUTOR has launched an inquiry into racist attacks made online after a mixed-race teenager was chosen to play the folk heroine Joan of Arc for a local annual festival.On Monday, 17-year-old Mathilde Edey Gamassou was chosen among 250 girls to play Joan for a spring festival marking the victory of the Catholic warrior saint in breaking the English siege of Orleans in 1429.Gamassou’s father is from Benin and whose mother is Polish, is set to ride horseback through the central city dressed in armour for an annual celebration dating back nearly six centuries. Friday 23 Feb 2018, 7:47 PM Qu’importe la couleur de peau, ce qui compte c’est que les jeunes filles de France soient fidèles aux valeurs qu’incarne la figure de Jeanne d’Arc, que les fêtes johanniques d’Orléans témoignet de la persistance de son message dans notre société. Bravo à #MathildeEdeyGamassou ! pic.twitter.com/TT00jRtB08— Gaël Nofri (@GaelNofri) February 23, 2018 Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article 16,101 Views Share90 Tweet Email1 By AFP A statue of Joan of Arc outside Reims Cathedral in northern France. Source: Gaël Nofri/Twitterlast_img read more

Un Américain de 15 ans développe un test pour dépister le cancer

first_imgUn Américain de 15 ans développe un test pour dépister le cancer du pancréasParmi les grandes innovations médicales qui ont marqué l’année 2012, une des plus honorables est sans doute celle d’un test pour détecter le cancer du pancréas mis au point par un jeune Américain de 15 ans. Chaque jour, de nouvelles innovations issues de la recherche médicale apportent de nouveaux espoirs aux malades. Parmi celles-ci, il existe désormais un test de dépistage du cancer du pancréas dont on doit l’existence à un jeune prodige de 15 ans, Jack Andraka. C’est dans le cadre d’un projet d’école que cet étudiant du collège North County High School dans le Maryland, aux États-Unis, a décidé de se lancer dans des recherches sur ce cancer. Son but : imaginer un moyen de diagnostiquer la pathologie de manière fiable avant qu’elle n’atteigne le stade critique.Ce sont finalement deux articles scientifiques libres d’accès sur internet qui l’ont mis sur la voie. Le test de dépistage de Jack Andraka se base sur la mise en évidence d’un bio-marqueur appelé mésothéline ou MSLN. Cette protéine, est présente naturellement dans les cellules du mésothélium, tissus biologiques, mais est produite en très grosse quantité dans les cellules tumorales. Au delà d’un certain seuil, la concentration de MSLN dans le sang et l’urine est suffisant pour affirmer le développement d’un cancer du pancréas mais aussi des ovaires ou des poumons. Sous forme de bande, le test nécessite alors une simple goutte de sang. Une fois son projet rédigé, le jeune garçon l’a envoyé à près de 200 illustres chercheurs et a essuyé par la suite de nombreux refus. Cependant, Anirban Maitra, spécialiste en oncologie et ingénierie biomoléculaire à l’Université Johns Hopkind de Baltimore, a décidé de lui donner sa chance et lui a ouvert son laboratoire afin qu’il mette au point le test. Au bout du compte, le protocole de dépistage mis en place a alors obtenu un franc succès. Un test 8 fois plus rapide et 26.000 fois moins cher À lire aussiDengue : symptômes, traitement, prévention, où en est-on ?Quelques centimes d’euros et cinq minutes de manipulation sont nécessaires pour obtenir une réponse fiable dans près de 90% des cas ce qui en fait un examen 8 fois plus rapide, 26.000 fois moins onéreux et 400 fois plus sensible que ce qui existe actuellement. Grâce à cette nouvelle découverte, Jack Andraka a remporté le prix scientifique Gordon E. Moore du concours Intel International Science and Engineering Fair et a été récompensé d’une somme équivalente à près de 74.000 euros. Prix qu’il vient de recevoir cette semaine.Désormais, il entend donc poursuivre ses travaux afin de produire le test à grande échelle et le rendre disponible pour tous. “Essentiellement, ce que j’envisage ici est que ceci pourrait sur l’étagère de votre pharmacie. Disons que vous suspectez que vous avez une maladie… vous achetez le test pour cela. Et vous voyez immédiatement si vous l’avez. Au lieu que votre docteur fasse le docteur, vous êtes le docteur”, a commenté Jack Andraka pour TakePart.com. Comme il l’a précisé, son test est par ailleurs d’autant plus intéressant qu’il pourrait être appliqué pour d’autres maladies, simplement en changeant de bio-marqueurs. Il serait ainsi possible de dépister de la même manière la tuberculose, les infections par E.coli, par des salmonelles, voire le SIDA.Le 30 janvier 2013 à 14:43 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

Officials identify 21yearold Marine Corps enlistee who died from cardiac arrest

first_img Posted: March 27, 2018 SAN DIEGO (CNS) — Military officials Tuesday released the name of a 21-year-old Marine Corps enlistee who died following a weekend medical emergency at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego.Patrick Armando Vega of Ventura was pronounced dead from cardiac arrest late Sunday morning at Naval Medical Center San Diego, where he was being treated after being stricken at MCRD the previous day, base officials said.A drill instructor found Vega, who was undergoing recruit training, unresponsive in his bed at the training depot near Lindbergh Field.“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Pvt. Vega during this difficult time,” said Brig. Gen. William Jurney, commanding general of MCRD San Diego and the Western Recruiting Region.The death is being investigated by the Marine Corps and by medical officials at the Balboa Park-area naval hospital, according to MCRD public affairs. KUSI Newsroom, Updated: 8:36 PM Officials identify 21-year-old Marine Corps enlistee who died from cardiac arrestcenter_img Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom March 27, 2018last_img read more

San Diego County cities lag in tobaccocontrol report

first_img KUSI Newsroom, San Diego County cities lag in tobacco-control report January 30, 2019 Categories: Health, Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter Posted: January 30, 2019 SAN DIEGO (CNS) – San Diego County cities scored largely below-average grades in the American Lung Association’s annual assessment of tobacco- control policies released Wednesday, with only two cities collecting B grades and five areas receiving Fs.No cities in the county earned the top grade of A.The San Diego County cities receiving B grades were El Cajon and Solana Beach. Receiving Fs were Imperial Beach, La Mesa, Poway, Santee and unincorporated San Diego County area. The city of San Diego received a D.The municipal grades are issued based on a review of four areas — smokefree outdoor air, smokefree housing, reducing sales of tobacco products and addressing emerging issues such as flavored tobacco products.According to the report, California overall leads the nation in efforts to reduce and prevent tobacco use, scoring an A grade for its smokefree air policies, and B grades for funding of tobacco-prevention programs, state tobacco taxes, access to services to help people stop using tobacco and having a minimum age of 21 for the purchase of tobacco.“We are proud that California continues to make progress in addressing the lung health of its people,” according to a statement from Lindsey Freitas, senior director of advocacy for the American Lung Association in California. “By passing a strong tobacco tax in 2016, continuing to support smoking-cessation programs and other key quit tools and standing up to the billions spent in lobbying by Big Tobacco, the state remains a leading nationwide advocate for health lungs and clean air.”But the report cites emerging threats, particularly the popularity of e-cigarettes and vaping, as particularly disturbing. Lung Association officials said there was a 78 percent increase in high school e-cigarette use between 2017 and 2018 nationally.“The tobacco industry continues to find creative ways to hook new generations of smokers by marketing and selling new products,” according to the report. “Local tobacco-control efforts have remained diligent in taking common sense approaches and pushing necessary policies to address new challenges.”According to the report, 50 percent of the state’s population lives in communities receiving a D or F grade, while only 20 percent live in areas with an A or B.According to the Lung Association, the number of cities and counties that received an overall A grade has increased from 18 in 2013 to 39 for 2018. KUSI Newsroom last_img read more

Bristol Bay fishermen tour the East Coast

first_imgDuring a whirlwind east coast tour this month, a group of young Alaska fishermen had the chance to visit the Boston Seafood Show, participate in Slow Fish in New Orleans, and share their concerns with Alaska’s congressional delegations.Download AudioAlaska fishermen meet with Sen. Dan Sullivan during a stop in Washington D.C. while touring the East Coast with the Alaska Marine Conservation Council in March.(Photo courtesy of AMCC) For Bristol Bay drifter Michael Shangin, of Port Heiden, the most memorable part of his first east coast trip was running through the nation’s capital with Sen. Lisa Murkowski.“We actually got to go watch Lisa speak on the Senate floor,” Shangin said. “She took us through underground tunnels and the senator’s subway – we had like 12 people crammed up in the little trolley – and she set us in her family booth, which I thought was pretty cool.”Murkowski’s speech that day was about drug addictions and the challenges Alaskans face in accessing recovery programs. Shangin said it rang true to what he’s seen in the region.Naknek’s Mili Vukich, another Bristol Bay drifter, said that sort of access characterized much of the trip, including the stop in Washington D.C.In D.C., the participants worked together to figure out what message they could share with Alaska’s congressional delegation that they all agreed on, and learned how to effectively approach policy-makers, she said.“We ended up being pretty united on, we want access for younger people into fisheries,” Vukich said. “I definitely agree that for the rest of the United States and Alaska, it should be more accessible – and a little easier to get loans and funding to get in the fishery. So we were really united on that front.”That message was well-received, and a staffer for Murkowski even asked questions that helped them think about what specifically could improve fisheries access, and how they could most effectively advocate for it, Vukich said.She and Shangin were two of ten fishermen who participated in the east coast tour organized by the Alaska Marine Conservation Council. Vukich said each stop was an opportunity to learn more about Alaska’s fisheries, the industry at large, and even how to work together more effectively.Aside from the D.C. visit, both Shangin and Vukich said the enjoyed learning more about other fisheries and interacting with other fishermen.Vukich said she doesn’t get as much opportunity to spend time with young fishermen in Naknek, and enjoyed that aspect of the trip. In Boston, the group also met with other young fishermen to hear about their experiences on the east coast.“It’s really cool being able to be around other fishermen who are just as passionate as I am about being a fishermen and learning about fishing policy and learning what we can do to make it better,” she said.At the seafood show, Vukich said there was lots to learn about, but she approached it with an eye toward improving the direct marketing effort she’s undertaken to help sell her family’s salmon in the Lower 48 states. She came to the realization that a high quality product with a story behind it might be the strongest selling point for Bristol Bay sockeye.Shangin is a Bristol Bay drifter who grew up seining in the Chigniks, and has participated in a wide-range of other commercial fisheries in the state: putting out pots for crab, longlining for halibut, and seining for herring. The trip still taught him quite about fisheries elsewhere in the country, he said.At the Slow Fish conference in New Orleans, he learned an unexpected fact.“There’s still people out in the world that use trap fisheries and I thought that was gone a long time ago,” he said.Shangin also shared his own fishing experiences there, offering those outside of Alaska a glimpse at some western Alaska fisheries. In Boston, he said he got a better sense of how Alaska fits in to the bigger fisheries scene.“I’ve learned that Alaska is just a small key player in the seafood industry,” he said. “I was at the Boston seafood show and there was things in this world I never thought I would see. It was so huge, and we think in Alaska that we’re big key players in the game, we’re wrong. It’s a big industry out in the world. It’s pretty amazing to experience, to see what’s actually happening out there. Just mind-boggling.”last_img read more

Kingfisher Airlines Faces Trading Suspension from Dec 1

first_imgThe Bombay Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange of India Ltd., India’s two main stock exchanges, will suspend trading of shares of grounded Kingfisher Airlines Ltd from December 1 for failing to comply with rules on reporting financial results, the bourses said in separate notices.Kingfisher, founded by liqour baron Vijay Mallya and once India’s No.2 carrier, has not flown for more than two years for want of cash. The company last reported its financial results for the three months ended December 2013.The exchanges will also suspend trading of UB Engineering Ltd, part of Mallya’s UB Group, from Dec. 1, they said citing the company’s failure to report financial results for two consecutive quarters to end-June.Several other smaller companies are also facing trading suspension for the same reason, according to the stock exchange notices. bit.ly/1xs89fP and bit.ly/1tojnxxThe companies can avert trading suspensions if they comply with the financial results reporting rules and pay required fines by Nov. 25, the exchanges said on Friday, adding the founder holding in the companies had been freezed, effective Nov. 7.last_img read more

Miss World Manushi Chillar to make Bollywood debut opposite Ranveer Singh

first_imgManushi Chhillar to make Bollywood debut.InstagramMiss World 2017 Manushi Chillar is reportedly all set to make her Bollywood debut soon, and rumours suggest she will be seen sharing screen space with none other than Ranveer Singh.According to DNA, Manushi has grabbed a big Bollywood movie and has already started prepping for it. Although the report stated that Ranveer is going to be cast opposite her in the movie, it also said that the rumours of him being the male lead could also be just speculations.Manushi, who idolises Priyanka Chopra and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, had reportedly started getting film offers soon after winning the pageant, but she wanted to take her own sweet time before taking the big call.A few months ago, it was reported that Farah Khan, who had given break to Deepika Padukone, had signed Manushi for her next directorial film.”Farah Khan is quite impressed with Manushi Chillar and thinks that she should be venturing into Bollywood. She too has considered the offer. As for Farah, she is quite excited about tapping into this unexplored genre of biopic,” Bollywood Hungama had quoted a source as saying.It will be interesting to see if the diva is now actually going to enter Bollywood or this again turns out to be just rumours.last_img read more

Inclusive democracy key to inclusive growth Rehman Sobhan

first_imgChairman of the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) professor Rehman Sobhan addresses a seminar titled `Pursuing Inclusive Growth: Priorities for the New Government` at a city hotel on Sunday. Photo: UNBChairman of the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) professor Rehman Sobhan has observed that inclusive democracy is needed to achieve inclusive growth.”If you want inclusive growth, you’ve to have inclusive democracy in your process,” he said while addressing a seminar titled “Pursuing Inclusive Growth: Priorities for the New Government” at a city hotel on Sunday.Rehman Sobhan also said the issue of quality education is not discussed in parliament as children of about 90 per cent MPs are studying in English medium schools, calling for conducting a study on the education situation. “There’re chances that 90 per cent of MPs’ children study in English medium schools.”The seminar was addressed, among others, by planning minister Abdul Mannan, deputy minister for education Mohibul Hasan Chowdhury, former finance minister M Syeduzzaman, Gonoshasthya Kendra founder Zafrullah Chowdhury, eminent physician Rashid-E-Mahbub, eminent environmentalist A Atiq Rahman and educationist Rasheda K Chowdhury.CPD executive director Fahmida Khatun made the keynote presentation on the topic while its distinguished fellow professor Mustafizur Rahman moderated the seminar.Presiding over the seminar, Rehman Sobhan said that the country’s education system has a serious structural problem. “But I never witnessed any debate in parliament in the last 10 years on the issue of quality education.”He said although the prime minister has announced a ‘zero-tolerance’ policy against corruption, the costs of different projects are overrunning. “But those are not being investigated.”Terming poverty as the country’s main problem, planning minister Abdul Mannan said the government is fighting hard to eradicate it.He questioned what the government can do if people want their children to study in English medium schools with money that comes from their family members working in the Middle East or the UK.Deputy minister for education Mohibul Hasan Chowdhury admitted that there are some bad communal contents in school textbooks and blamed it on the influence of a reactionary group that had been in the administration.He said Awami League has prepared its election manifesto in light of the country’s present reality.Former finance minister M Syeduzzaman said Bangladesh badly needs private investment for enhancing growth. “But unfortunately, Bangladesh’s position is even lower than Myanmar in this regard,” he observed.Zafrullah Chowdhury alleged that the attorney general office is creating obstacles to obtaining bail by those accused in ‘fictitious’ cases. “This is a big barrier to good governance.”He also underscored the need for delegating power to the local level administration.Rashid-e-Mahbub said he feels bad to see that the country’s medical care system is in its ‘worst’ situation. “The poor are getting poorer and it has been biggest challenge to ensure rationality in providing medical care services.”Rasheda K Chowdhury said the young community is skeptical about whether they will get job on completion of their education.She said communal contents are still in school textbooks although those have already been identified.Appreciating the High Court verdict banning coaching business by teachers, the educationist said children will now get time to go to playgrounds.She also said if repression on women stops and corruption is uprooted, this will increase 2 per cent GDP.last_img

Typhoon rips through Hong Kong as Philippines toll rises

first_imgA delivery worker delivers his last order ahead of the arrival of Super Typhoon Mangkhut in Yangjiang in China`s Guangdong province on 16 September 2018. Photo: AFPTyphoon Mangkhut rocked Hong Kong en route to mainland China on Sunday, injuring scores and sending skyscrapers swaying, after killing at least 30 people in the Philippines and ripping a swathe of destruction through its agricultural heartland.The world’s biggest storm this year left large expanses in the north of the main Philippine main island of Luzon underwater as fierce winds tore trees from the ground and rain unleashed dozens of landslides.In Hong Kong weather authorities issued their maximum alert for the storm, which battered the city with gusts of more than 230 kilometres per hour (142 mph) and left over 100 injured, according to government figures.As the storm passed south of Hong Kong, trees were snapped in half and roads blocked, while some windows in tower blocks were smashed and skyscrapers swayed, as they are designed to do in intense gales.The Philippines was just beginning to count the cost of the typhoon, but police confirmed at least 30 were killed when it smashed into northern Luzon on Saturday.In the town of Baggao it demolished houses, tore off roofs and downed power lines. Some roads were cut off by landslides and many remained submerged.Farms across northern Luzon, which produces much of the nation’s rice and corn, were sitting under muddy floodwater, their crops ruined just a month before harvest.”We’re already poor and then this happened to us. We have lost hope,” 40-year-old Mary Anne Baril, whose corn and rice crops were spoilt, told AFP.”We have no other means to survive,” she said tearfully.Nearly five million people, almost a quarter of whom survive on just a few dollars per day, live in the storm’s path.A car is stranded in seawater as high waves hit the shore at Heng Fa Chuen, a residental district near the waterfront, during Typhoon Mangkhut in Hong Kong, China on 16 September 2018. Photo: Reuters- Flooding in Hong Kong and Macau -An average of 20 typhoons and storms lash the Philippines each year, killing hundreds of people.The latest victims were mostly people who died in landslides, including a family of four. In addition to the 30 killed in the Philippines, a woman was swept out to sea in Taiwan.The Philippines’ deadliest storm on record is Super Typhoon Haiyan, which left more than 7,350 people dead or missing across the central part of the country in November 2013.In Hong Kong, waters surged in Hong Kong’s famous Victoria Harbour and coastal fishing villages, from which hundreds of residents were evacuated to storm shelters.Some roads were waist-deep in water with parts of the city cut off by floods and fallen trees on Sunday afternoon as the rains continued.In the fishing village of Tai O, where many residents live in stilt houses built over the sea, some desperately tried to bail out their inundated homes.”Floodwater is rushing into my home but I’m continuously shovelling the water out. It’s a race against time,” Tai O resident Lau King-cheung told AFP by phone.The government warned people to stay indoors but some ventured out, heading to the coast to take photos.A couple and child were seen by an AFP reporter taking pictures on a pier known as a popular Instagram spot as waves surged into it and almost submerged it.Others stayed at home but were terrified by smashing windows in their apartments.”The entire floor and bed are covered in glass,” one resident told TVB after her bedroom window shattered. “The wind is so strong.”Almost all flights in and out of Hong Kong were cancelled.High waves hit the shore at Heng Fa Chuen, a residental district near the waterfront, as Typhoon Mangkhut slams Hong Kong, China on 16 September 2018. Photo: ReutersIn the neighbouring gambling enclave of Macau, all 42 casinos shut Saturday night and businesses were shuttered Sunday morning, some boarded up and protected by piles of sandbags.As the storm moved south past Macau, its streets became submerged under water gushing from the harbour.Rescue workers navigated the roads on jetskis, rescuing residents trapped in their shops.The government and casinos are taking extra precautions after Macau was battered by Typhoon Hato last year, which left 12 dead.Preparations were in high gear on China’s southern coast, including in Yangjiang, which is not often hit by major typhoons and where the city’s 2.4 million people were bracing for a direct hit.Further down the coast preparations were also underway in Zhanjiang, where some villagers feared for the worst.”I couldn’t sleep last night, I saw the typhoon on television and how intense it was,” said 55-year-old Chan Yau Lok.last_img

How The Bathroom Bill Helped Push A Republican PAC To Spend Millions

first_img Share Facebook campaign pages/Marjorie Kamys CoteraTop row, left to right: Republican runoff candidates Thomas McNutt and Cody Harris, HD-8; Ben Leman and Jill Wolfskill, HD-13. Bottom row, left to right: Brad Buckley and Scott Cosper, HD-54; Steve Allison and Matt Beebe, HD-121.In September, the Texas Capitol was finally starting to calm down.A couple of contentious legislative sessions had pitted the Legislature’s Republican centrists against hard-line conservatives, largely over measures regulating which restrooms transgender Texans could use. Members had returned to their districts, almost certain the “bathroom bill” would surface as an issue in the 2018 primaries. And House Speaker Joe Straus ’ surprise retirement announcement was still weeks away.For the Associated Republicans of Texas, it was time to go all out.The group, founded in the 1970s to flip the Legislature red, had built a record defending Republican lawmakers aligned with the moderate wing of the party — but for years had waited to wade into re-election bids until the state’s primaries ended. Now, ART was about to pump an unprecedented amount of its money into GOP primary races for like-minded candidates — and even one challenger to an incumbent — locked in competitive intra-party battles.“If we waited until after the primary to engage, we were limiting the effectiveness we could have,” Cyndi Taylor Krier, an ART leader and former state senator said. “If you say, ‘Well, I’m just going to wait until November,’ you’re giving them half your vote.”With its emergence in the GOP primaries, ART is now a significant counter force to Empower Texans, a prominent Tea Party group that’s long thrown its financial weight behind hard-line conservatives running for office. ART’s increased efforts also come ahead of a pivotal vote next year in the Texas House to pick the next speaker — and the elections this year will shape the ideological profile of the lower chamber’s next leader.So what prompted the group to end decades of tradition and step up its involvement? As Gaylord Hughey Jr., one of ART’s leaders, put it, the catalyst was the “bathroom bill.”“We felt like we had to engage in the primaries … to invest in candidates of reason,” Hughey, an East Texas oil and gas attorney and a major GOP fundraiser , told The Texas Tribune. “There was a growing concern about the influence of Empower Texans and the ultra-conservative policies that they were pushing, which were not necessarily in the best interest of this state.”ART has already doled out $2.3 million in advertising, donations, polling and consulting so far this election cycle — about four times the amount it spent on those same items for the 2016 primaries and runoffs, campaign finance reports show. That money has helped moderate Republicans in the House and Senate largely fend off competition from Empower-backed challenges in the March 6 primaries . And it may have a similar effect in Tuesday’s runoffs.May 22 runoffsWith the March 6 primaries in the rear-view mirror, seven GOP primary races for the state House are set for runoffs. ART is knee-deep in all of them.And a big chunk of the group’s funding has come from a handful of key supporters — including Straus, who has given the group $350,000 this year. John Nau, a co-chair of ART who’s also a Houston beer distributor and Gov. Greg Abbott ’s campaign treasurer, has donated $150,000 to the group since July. And two El Paso businessmen — ART board member Woody Hunt and Paul Foster, vice chairman of the University of Texas System Board of Regents — have also dumped in $450,000 and $250,000 since July, respectively.The Empower Texans PAC, plump with donations from Midland oilman Tim Dunn, has also dumped tons of money into races this election cycle — around $3.5 million for advertising, donations, polling and consulting.In the open-seat race for House District 13, a rural district east of Austin, ART has given former Grimes County Judge Ben Leman over $100,000 in in-kind contributions via digital and radio advertising and direct mail, campaign finance reports show. Leman’s opponent, Bellville businesswoman Jill Wolfskill, has criticized ART as a “liberal Austin group.” She’s received $50,000 in support from Empower Texans PAC.In another open race, House District 8, ART shelled out around $181,000 in in-kind contributions to Cody Harris, a Palestine businessman who faces Thomas McNutt, whose family owns the Corsicana staple Collin Street Bakery, in the runoff for House District 8. Empower Texans’ PAC has spent over $300,000 on McNutt.The HD-8 seat is highly coveted for both sides of the party — state Rep. Byron Cook , the retiring Corsicana Republican who has represented the district since 2003, was one of the House leaders most closely tied to the death of bathroom bill legislation.ART has also spent nearly $125,000 on state Rep. Scott Cosper , a Killeen Republican who’s in a primary runoff in his bid for a second term. Cosper, asked about the help ART has given him this cycle, told the Tribune in April that it was a gesture to show their “appreciation and commitment to bring back a member that represents Texas well.”The group has also made some last-minute contributions to candidates in the other House GOP runoffs, including Steve Allison, who is running for the San Antonio-based seat Straus is vacating.“The establishment strikes back”ART first dabbled in primary politics during the 2016 election cycle — a decision the group in part made, as Krier, one of ART’s leaders recalled, to combat special interest groups within the “far right part of the party” that were funding aggressive campaigns against Republican incumbents.“This is the establishment strikes back,” said Mark Jones, a political science fellow at Rice University’s Baker Institute. “Movement conservatives have gone all out against centrist conservatives in House and Senate races … slowly eroding the ranks of the establishment.”This cycle, the group had an impressive number of wins on March 6 — but also a couple of sizable losses. State Rep. Cindy Burkett , a Sunnyvale Republican who received almost $180,000 in in-kind contributions this year from ART, came up short in her bid to oust state Sen. Bob Hall , R-Edgewood. Others backed by ART in their re-election bids, such as state Rep. Wayne Faircloth , R-Galveston, and state Sen. Craig Estes , R-Wichita Falls, were defeated by challenges running to their right.Yet Hughey, the oil and gas attorney, said ART’s efforts this cycle have produced more incoming House members that fit the group’s description of helping elect “reasoned, conservative leadership” to the state Legislature.“Without the financial resources and other resources that ART provided, the makeup of the Texas Legislature would have been far different than what is likely to be the case come January,” Hughey said. “That, in turn, I think is going to impact who the next speaker is, and we’ll also have a more balanced Legislature as a result of ART’s involvement.”Disclosure: John Nau, Woody Hunt, Paul Foster, the University of Texas System and Rice University have been financial supporters of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune’s journalism. Find a complete list of them here .last_img read more

10 Favorite Tools That Frontline Salespeople Nominate As Their Favorites

first_img Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Register Now » February 5, 2016 Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global 8 min read In sales, every minute saved is another opportunity gained. And for busy salespeople, time is a luxury. Fortunately, a plethora of tools exist to make selling fast and efficient. The only problem is that time-pressed people may have difficulty finding the time to experiment with different technologies.Related: 3 Tips to Make Sure Your Tech Investments for Your Sales Team Aren’t a Waste of MoneyThat’s why my team at Tenfold has stepped in to help. I asked several of these sales experts to nominate their 10 favorite time-saving tools. So, to help readers identify apps and software that may save them hours of work each week, here are their 10 favorites. 1. ConspireFor the longest time, LinkedIn was the easiest way to source warm introductions to leads. But, as users began accepting invitations to connect from professionals they hardly knew, the value of a LinkedIn intro became diluted. Currently, it is common to ask for an introduction on LinkedIn only to find out that your first-degree connection isn’t actually familiar with your prospect. Sadly, a second-degree connection isn’t what it used to be.To get a high-impact intro, Patrick Hogan, our CEO, uses Conspire. Conspire is a tool that analyzes email data to identify how well your contacts know one other. It displays a “connection strength” among people in your network, and gives you access to professionals in their network who they have a warm relationship with.Who else uses it: Companies such as Distil Networks, startup investors like Brad Feld and tech influencers, including Rand Fishkin, all use the service. Currently, users can connect with more than six million people through the Conspire app.Cost: Free for all users.2. CalendlyScheduling meetings is a nightmare. Often, finding a mutually agreeable time to speak with a customer is chaotic and unproductive. In fact, a 2010 survey revealed that professionals waste 4.8 hours each week on scheduling meetings.To make booking calls and demos easier, Xand Griffin of PeopleMetrics employs Calendly, an appointment-scheduling app. Calendly syncs with your calendar to show prospects when you are available so they may choose a time that works for them.Who else uses it: Organizations that use Calendly include Betterment, the University of Georgia and Xero.Cost: Free for unlimited meetings with one event type. $8 per month per seat for the upgraded plan.3. BoomerangMost salespeople juggle hundreds of opportunities at a time and own thousands of contacts. And to keep conversations fresh and relevant, many use Boomerang, a Gmail app that allows users to schedule email sends in the future and create reminders to address incoming messages.Aalap Shah of SoMe says he uses Boomerang to “pre-write notes, thank you notes, and other materials and schedule [emails] out one day a week. This allows me to stay in touch, be consistent in communication, and never forget to write a follow-up note.”Who else uses it: According to Google Chrome, the company boasts 1,042,277 users for its Chrome extension.Cost: The basic plan (free) offers 10 monthly credits. The personal, pro and premium plans cost $4.99, $14.99 and $49.99 per month, respectively.4. RapportiveA quick snapshot of who your buyer is can reveal a world of information. According to Jeremy Boudinet of Ambition, Rapportive saves salespeople loads of time by centralizing everything there is to know about an individual in one place.Instead of manually searching for a person’s Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter profiles, salespeople use Rapportive to surface personal details about a prospect including his location, interests and past work experience.Who else uses it: So far, 422,362 people use Rapportive’s Chrome extension. Some 18,188 users own the Firefox add-on.Cost: Free as an add-on for Firefox and Chrome.5. KitedeskFor a more powerful alternative to Rapportive, Boudinet recommends Kitedesk, saying, “Our clients use it to automate putting data into their CRM and organize their daily sales outreach, which are both huge time savers.”Kitedesk pulls a lead’s email address, phone number, social accounts, past interaction data and company size to give sales reps fast and reliable insights into who the person is and what happened in previous conversations.Who else uses it: On G2 Crowd, companies rated Kitedesk 4.8 stars out of 5.Cost: Plans are a flat-rate $49 per month per user.Related: 6 Powerful Productivity Tools That Can Supercharge Every Solopreneur’s Workflow6. QuoteRoller (now PandaDoc)To save time at the proposal stage, Henry O’Loughlin of Nectafy uses QuoteRoller (now PandaDoc) to create contracts instantaneously. With templates, O’Loughlin plugs in client-specific information before he delivers his proposals digitally. Using QuoteRoller’s e-signature function, document analytics and in-line comments, prospects can request specific changes to the proposal and execute the contract from their desktop computers or mobile devices.Who else uses it: PandaDoc is used by companies like FreshBooks, Panasonic, VentureBeat and Patagonia.Cost: Plans start at $19 a month per user when billed annually ($29 per month when billed month-to-month) and go up to $49 per month per user.7. HarvestTo increase their productivity, salespeople must first track how they spend their time. And O’Loughlin insists Harvest is the best tool for that. He says, “It provides reports of how we spend our time on the sales process, so we can cut out inefficiencies.” Armed with data, sales teams can begin to systematically improve how they sell and they may eliminate or outsource responsibilities that waste time.In an article for Harvard Business Review, Bain & Company partners Dianne Ledingham, Mark Kovac and Heidi Locke Simon state, “Companies that use a scientific approach to sales force effectiveness have found that reps in the lower quartiles show dramatic improvement, with productivity jumps of 200%.” With Harvest, salespeople can monitor how long certain tasks take to complete and measure time spent against ROI.Who else uses it: Multinational brands like Amnesty International, Kiva, Nike, and Volkswagen all trust Harvest.Cost: Free for one user, four clients and two projects. Solo plan costs $12 per month, Basic $49 and Business $99.8. ZoomLast year, a study commissioned by Larato found, “Salespeople spend 11% of their time traveling.” Instead of being on trains, planes, taxis, and buses, sales reps can instead leverage video conferencing to host face-to-face meetings with prospects. To do that, O’Loughlin licenses Zoom, an online meeting software.“We find that video meetings help build trust a lot more than simple phone calls. If you can’t meet in person, a video call saves a ton of time and helps build rapport better than the phone,” says O’Loughlin. In fact, sales execs prefer video calls over in-person meetings. Data from PGi suggests that, “70% of people would rather video conference than travel to a meeting.”Who else uses it: More than 140,000 companies use Zoom including SolarCity, Texas A&M and Nudge.Cost: Free plans limit video calls up to 40 minutes each. Paid plans cost $14.99 for the Pro tier and $19.99 for the Business tier. Enterprise customers receive custom quotes.9. LeadcasterSome 97 percent of website visitors engage with your business more than once. With tools like VisiStat’s Leadcaster, salespeople can proactively discover customers’ identity, interests and needs. Jason Brewer of Brolik uses Leadcaster to generate “a daily report on [which] companies are on our site and what pages they are viewing, which helps to identify potential leads and the services they are interested in.”Who else uses it: VisiStat boasts more than 60,000 customers and 100 partners.Cost: The Starter plan costs $350 a month for a single user. Pro plans cost $500 a month for up to five users. For bigger accounts, pricing is customized.10. DatanyzeHigh-impact sales execs know granular details about their best customers. As VP of sales for LeadPages, Kyle Hale says he believes that, “Marketing teams that use Hubspot or Marketo and at the same time run paid ad campaigns via Google ads or webinars have a higher likelihood of closing for my team.” Knowing that, he leverages Datanyze to find companies which fit his ideal customer profile to maximize his team’s sales prospecting productivity. With Datanyze, Hale can crawl millions of sites around the web to identify which technologies each employs.Hale explains, “Getting to the right companies and contacts much faster than you could say even two years ago is important. When you multiply the hours saved in prospecting across my team of six, it adds up very, very quickly over the course of weeks, months, years, etc.”Who else uses it: 21,110 users have downloaded Datanyze’s free Chrome extension.Cost: Standard licenses for the full product suite cost $600 a month. Pro licenses cost $1,200. Enterprise plans come with custom pricing.Final thoughtsSalespeople spend less than one-third of their time actually selling. And that’s a shame. By using each of these tools, frontline sales reps can free up their schedules to have more frequent and higher quality interactions with prospects.Related: A Slew of New Technologies Is Making a Science of the Art of Saleslast_img read more

This AI Tool Helps Companies Eliminate Hiring Bias in the Name of

first_img 7 min read In this series, The Way We Work, Entrepreneur Associate Editor Lydia Belanger examines how people foster productivity, focus, collaboration, creativity and culture in the workplace.If your criminal record is a clean slate, you probably don’t think too much about background checks. But probability suggests it’s almost certain that someone you work with has one.What constitutes a criminal record can range from minor to major crimes, from fishing without a license to speeding to driving under the influence to murder. But historically, some background check processes haven’t distinguished among offenses of varying degrees.The Ban the Box movement has pushed to remove the “Have you ever been convicted of a crime?” checkbox on job applications that can automatically land a candidate’s app in the trash, regardless of what that crime might have been. A company might look at its large candidate pool and decide to pass on anyone with a criminal record, unwilling to spend the time and human resources to vet them.Related: 7 Practical Ways to Reduce Bias in Your Hiring ProcessThe time-consuming nature of background checks was the initial inspiration for background check software company Checkr. Co-founders Daniel Yanisse and Jonathan Perichon were working as engineers at on-demand delivery startup Deliv back in 2013, when the “gig economy” had first taken shape. Suddenly, consumers were trusting strangers employed for contract work by startups to clean their homes, drive them around, deliver their dinner and more. Deliv needed lots of drivers, but existing background check technology made the screening process take a week or more.Today, using AI, Checkr automates background checks, and the process only takes a day or two. The San Francisco-based company’s 10,000-plus customers include gig-economy giants such as Uber, Lyft, Instacart, Postmates and Grubhub, as well as staffing companies, retailers and more.Background checks vary in their thoroughness. Some include driving records, employment verifications and drug tests. Checkr gathers data from various sources, including criminal records from courthouses at the county, state and federal levels. Many of these databases are digital, but for those that still keep records on paper, Checkr dispatches a contractor to manually collect the information. Employers typically pay $35 per applicant screening. Checkr pricing varies based on the information requested and the volume of checks a customer runs.Checkr also adds a layer of quality assurance, confirming that, say, two guys with the same name, birth date and state of residence aren’t confused for each other. Finally, it’s programmed to account for differing background check regulations at the state level.“That would take multiple days for humans to review and do the work,” Yanisse says, “so we’ve automated that with algorithms, which is more accurate and faster.”But the Checkr team didn’t set out to help the Ubers of the world reject convicts faster. From day one, Yanisse says they’ve designed the software to reduce bias in hiring and give more qualified candidates a chance at employment. He points out that the U.S. economy loses roughy $87 billion annually because people with criminal records can’t get hired, and that nearly 75 percent of formerly incarcerated individuals are still unemployed a year after release, according to ACLU research.People who have criminal records but don’t have quality jobs that pay a living wage are more likely to commit a crime again. That translates to more people on government assistance or in jail — and more taxpayer money to pay for it. Meanwhile, employment retention rates are higher among people with criminal histories than the general population, which translates to lower long-term recruitment costs for companies who hire them, according to the ACLU.Related: Evernote’s Head of ‘People’ Explains How the Company Employs Tech Tools to Reinforce Its Values“When you look at statistics, it’s extremely rare to have workplace violence or crime, especially if you have a good interview process and good HR practices in place,” Yanisse says, explaining that the background check industry has long relied fear-mongering as a marketing tactic. “So we just want to rebalance.”Checkr also corrects for variation and biases among humans who are trying to hire fairly. It is unrealistic to hold a large company to one hiring standard. If someone has the discretion to reject or advance a candidate, he or she might have trouble standardizing the approach.Each Checkr client can customize the software to ignore or never surface data about certain criminal offenses that they don’t deem relevant to the job at hand. Someone applying to be a customer service representative, for example, could perform the job perfectly well even with traffic violations on their record. A ride-hailing driver? Perhaps not. Companies can also specify time windows: If the crime happened before a certain year, it’s no longer a concern.“In reality, when you would get a background check report in the past, if there was a long list of things, even if it was just a long list of traffic variations or things like that, you probably were going to be biased,” Yanisse says. “Like, ‘Ooh, there are a bunch of flags here. I’m not sure I want to take the risk.’”When it comes to AI, many people worry about the potential for AI to reflect the biases of the human software engineers who built it. But Yanisse insists that doesn’t come into play with Checkr, because the AI is not determining if a candidate is qualified for the job or make hiring decisions for its user companies.“We are not predicting if the person is going to be a good fit for the job,” Yanisse says. “We’re using AI for classifying data. Like, is this a driving violation or is this a physical crime? Those things are more fact-based.”Yanisse likens Checkr to the advent of the credit score. Pre-FICO and credit bureaus (the automation of credit score determinations), a loan officer at a bank could pass judgement or discriminate against a credit applicant.“It removes the ability for employers to use a background check as a proxy to screen people out,” says David Patterson, Checkr’s head of communications. “Historically, employers would often tell people who were minorities that they didn’t get the job and use the background check as an excuse, like, ‘Oh we couldn’t hire them because they had this like minor thing on their record.’ But that may have not been the actual reason.”At the moment, Checkr is focused on measuring its impact and calculating how many candidates would have been rejected with or without its software. Last year, the company reports that it helped 8,000 candidates get accepted instead of declined. For 2018, its goal is 80,000. It aims to achieve that not only by signing on more clients, but getting its existing clients to fine-tune their use of the tool.“Initially, I think it was quite binary how decisions were made. Either you’re clean and you haven’t done anything and you’re a good person, or you have some flags in your background, so we’re not going to hire you,” Yanisse says. “But when you get into the details, you realize that that’s not the case. There’s no good or bad people, there’s a whole spectrum. People make mistakes, and there are different severities of mistakes.”Related video: How Making Naïve Mistakes Led Me to Ultimate Success Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. May 30, 2018center_img Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Register Now »last_img read more