A note from the editor Please consider making a v

first_imgA note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please remember that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS… A Deaf campaigner has launched a legal action aimed at stopping the government discriminating against users of British Sign Language by preventing them from serving on juries.David Buxton, chief executive of the London-based disabled people’s organisation Action on Disability, is seeking a judicial review of the government’s failure to allow him to sit on a jury.He was called up for jury service at Kingston Crown Court earlier this year, but when he told the Jury Central Summoning Bureau he was Deaf, he was informed that he was not required.A crown court judge later deferred a decision on whether he would be allowed to serve as a juror.In his claim for judicial review – which is being funded by the Equality and Human Rights Commission – Buxton is arguing that justice secretary David Gauke is discriminating against him and breaching the Equality Act’s public sector equality duty, and the Human Rights Act, by not allowing him to serve on a jury with the assistance of an interpreter.The Ministry of Justice said this week that allowing a non-juror into the jury room during its deliberations breaches common law.But Buxton’s call is backed by the UN committee on the rights of persons with disabilities, which said last September that the UK government should enable BSL-users “to fully and equally participate as jurors in court proceedings”, under article 13 (access to justice) of the UN disability convention.The committee, in its concluding observations on the government’s implementation of the convention, said it was concerned that “regulations exclude persons with hearing impairments from participation in jury proceedings, and that personal assistants/interpreters are not deemed to constitute procedural accommodation”.The refusal to allow BSL-users to take part as jurors is a long-standing source of frustration for many Deaf campaigners.Jeff McWhinney, at the time the chief executive of the British Deaf Association (BDA), was told by a crown court judge in 1999 that he could not let him serve as a juror because the law prevented him bringing an interpreter – a “13th person” – into the jury room.The Labour government said it was considering a change in the law at the time, but successive governments have failed to take steps to do so in the last 19 years.BDA said it had persuaded the Ministry of Justice to look at this and other issues affecting d/Deaf people across prisons, courts and juries, but that the government had yet to take any “meaningful action”.Now Buxton, himself a former BDA chief executive, has launched another legal bid to force a change in the law.He spoke out this week as the high court rejected his separate judicial review claim that the government had discriminated against him and other BSL-users by imposing an Access to Work cap that affects those with the highest support needs (see separate story).Buxton said that ruling showed that the Equality Act “does not sufficiently protect Deaf people using BSL despite ministers and MPs repeatedly saying that it does.“This judicial review judgment shows how hard it is to protect our rights as Deaf people using BSL as our first or preferred language.“The government supports the economies of cost over our basic human rights, therefore we have to campaign for the Equality Act to be strengthened, especially as there is no legal status for BSL in this current act.”He said that one reasonable adjustment that would solve the problem of the “13th person in the jury room” would be for the court to provide an interpreter in another room while he watched a video relay screen in the jury room.The failure to allow BSL-users to serve on juries is further evidence, Buxton believes, that the Equality Act 2010 does not provide sufficient protection to Deaf people who use BSL, “despite ministers and MPs repeatedly saying that it does”.A BDA spokeswoman said: “The current UK practice of denying Deaf people the right to sit on a jury is an overt form of institutional discrimination and failure to accord Deaf people their rights as full citizens.“Justice should not only be received but also dispensed by all sections of the community including Deaf people.”Louise Whitfield, Buxton’s solicitor, from legal firm Deighton Pierce Glynn, said the jury case would “further test the government to show its commitment to the spirit of the Equality Act or to continue simply ignoring the fact that it is possible for Deaf people to serve as jurors in this modern, inclusive and accessible society without any direct or indirect discrimination”.A Ministry of Justice spokeswoman said: “It would be inappropriate to comment while legal proceedings are ongoing.”last_img read more

Disabled people who need to receive letters from t

first_imgDisabled people who need to receive letters from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in alternative formats have been facing lengthy delays with their benefit claims, apparently because of a dispute between DWP and private sector contractors.It has been claimed that a dispute between DWP and the US print services giant Xerox, and potentially other contractors as well, has led to disabled people experiencing delays receiving vital letters about their benefit claims in formats such as large print and – for people with dyslexia – on yellow paper.Claimants across the country are believed to have been experiencing delays for at least 18 months.Xerox may now have become the latest in a string of outsourcing giants – such as Atos, Capita and Maximus – to face allegations of incompetence over DWP benefit-related contracts.Xerox originally claimed this week that it was not involved in the alternative formats contract.But after being shown a link to a press release from 2007 announcing how it led a consortium that won a contract to provide DWP with “print and associated services”, a Xerox spokeswoman changed her position to say that Xerox “no longer is involved in that contract”.She repeatedly refused to say when Xerox stopped providing these services to DWP.A DWP spokeswoman said she believed that Xerox did still have a contract with Xerox. She had not been able to clarify the position by 1pm today (Thursday).One disabled claimant, Michael Owen, from South Yorkshire, has had repeated problems obtaining DWP letters on yellow paper relating to his claims for employment and support allowance (ESA) and personal independence payment, and the repayment of loans under the old Social Fund.He has experienced delays of up to 13 weeks in receiving DWP letters from the alternative format team (AFT).As a result of the delays, the former youth and community worker has missed appointments for face-to-face work capability assessments, which have led to his ESA being suspended.He told a senior DWP manager in an email in July: “The constant stress and strain I am having to endure, not only has further impacted on my mental health, it has also rendered me feeling physically sick even when dialling the PIP and ESA numbers and no one should feel like that.”In an email he received from a senior DWP manager in July, in response to his complaint, Owen was told: “These delays clearly fall below an acceptable level of customer service and I am sincerely sorry that you have been experiencing difficulties in receiving mail within an acceptable timescale.“The AFT have provided an assurance that they will endeavour to process your future correspondence within 48 hours.”Although DWP is now aware of the delays with his paperwork, he is concerned that his ESA will again be suspended – he is currently in the work-related activity group – if he fails to receive the ESA 50 form he needs on yellow paper by the deadline next month.Owen told Disability News Service: “I can’t keep to any of their timescales because I don’t see any of their paperwork in the correct timeframe.”He has previously been told that the problems were the fault of Royal Mail for losing the relevant letters, but he says he has now been told by a DWP manager that the delays were caused by a dispute with Xerox over its performance on the contract.His complaint is being investigated by the independent case examiner (ICE).A DWP spokeswoman said: “DWP has its own staff who provide letters in alternative formats, to ensure these are handled as swiftly as possible.“Once we are aware that someone needs this service, all their letters are managed by DWP directly.  “We have apologised to [Mr Owen] for the delays he experienced, and our staff now manage his post in alternative format.”Asked when DWP began to provide this work itself, rather than contracting it out, and why it apparently decided to bring the work in-house, and when and why Xerox seems to have ended its involvement in providing these services, she failed to respond by 1pm today, and also failed to explain what had been causing the delays. A note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS…last_img read more

Kinks Erotic Dungeon More Horror Than Sex

first_img“The dude who cut his dick off after binging off coke — that made me squirm,” said her boyfriend Danny D.The coked-out man was one of the milder characters in the haunted house. After being led down to the basement in a group of five, we were handed surgical masks that had to be worn at all times and that inevitably fogged up glasses.“Let me guess, your glasses fog up,” said the same man who had asked us about our medical conditions, again, not too kindly. “Deal with it.” Deal with it we did, the mist on our lenses just one more layer of blindness in an already smoke-filled dungeon. First came a leather-strapped woman who laughed hysterically and made us circle up, instructing us to remember a phrase — “We yearn what we fear” — before cackling further and leading us into a room full of chairs and plastic bags.Another man lead each of us to a chair and sat us down, picking up the plastic bags on the floor and covering our heads with them. We were then walked, blind, into another room and made to hold onto a rope above our heads, pushed forward across a wet and uneven floor. We were eventually stopped and had the bags removed from our heads. A woman sat sprawled on the floor in front of us, in tears and apparent agony, mumbling about her baby and asking for help. A man in a red-demon costume stood nearby watching our group.Naturally I reached out, trying to pull her up onto her feet. Instead, she guided my hand down to her groin and wrapped it around something slightly moist — a plastic bag, it turns out, meant to be her baby, that I then yanked out and gave to the demon man. He chased us out of the room and into an adjacent shower, where a naked woman huddled in a corner with a hood on her head. Again, I gingerly approached and removed her hood, waking her up: She screamed at our group and chased us down a dark hallway, prodding us to run faster and faster.All semblance of plot disappeared after this: Over the next 20 minutes, there appeared a 50s housewife who took a family photo of our group before being yanked away by a man in a bear mask, who eagerly salivated over and sniffed our faces. And of course the coked-out man from earlier, who sat our group down in a bar and feigned cutting off his penis. He stroked our faces with the fake phallus before chasing us out of his establishment.A particularly memorable character was the prisoner chained to the wall who invited us into his jail cell for a religious blessing. Wearing only a diaper, the man dug into his nether regions and produced fake feces, making a cross on each of our foreheads “in the name of the father, the son, and the holy shit.” The phrase from earlier eventually came back in what was the most titillating part of the night. Two fully-nude women laid together on a bed in apparent bliss before approaching our group and stroking our bodies, teasingly asking each of us “What do you desire?”One of the less-distracted members of the group remembered “We yearn what we fear,” and the naked women stopped their caressing and lead us out to end the tour.In the lighted lobby, everyone agreed it had the desired effect.“I was fucking scared,” said Diamond, who was in the group behind ours. It was more horror than sex, however, and Diamond said she had expected more explicit situations, a feeling shared by others.“We thought there would be more kink involved actually,” said Lesle Lawrence, who was with her husband of three weeks. The pair flew in from Georgia to attend a friend’s wedding, and enjoyed their one night of freedom doing something unavailable in the South. “You don’t get kink in Georgia.”The haunted house will continue through Halloween, and tickets cost $40. “Do you have asthma, epilepsy, or a history of seizures?” So began this year’s “Hell in the Armory” erotic haunted house. The question was barked at us by a man pointing a flashlight in our eyes, and only once everyone had answered “no” were we allowed into a small fog-filled room with flashing strobe lights. The haunted house on October 14 was the second such event put on at the Armory, the headquarters of internet pornography company Kink.com. Once again, it transformed its basement into a series of erotic dungeons, though this year’s event was more psycho than sexual.“It was super twisted,” said Stephanie Diamond, who said she’s into “psychological mind fucks” and went through with her boyfriend. “My blood pressure and heart rate were for sure elevated — in a good way.” Tags: Kink.com Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0%center_img 0%last_img read more

Join Mission Local and Read Like a Zombie

first_img 0% Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0% If you read the news like a zombie just to stay informed, join Mission Local now! Let’s make the Mission one of the first neighborhoods to have a fully supported news site with real reporters (who, yes, sometimes feel like zombies).  Join. last_img

Photos Whirling stepping and drumming through Carnaval

first_imgPhoto by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp. Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp. 0% Tags: Carnaval Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0% Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.Photo by George Lipp.last_img read more

OFFICIAL Partner of Super League BRUT for Men is o

first_imgOFFICIAL Partner of Super League BRUT for Men is on the hunt for the St Helens Fan of Pride – someone who is a huge Saints supporter and is committed to the sport in their local community.Fans have until midnight on June 25 to make their nominations at www.brutformen.co.uk/superleagueSt Helens BRUT Fan of Pride player ambassador Alex Walmsley – who will be part of the shortlisting judging panel – is calling on all fans to nominate their friends and family for this prestigious award before it’s too late.There are some fantastic prizes on offer for Fan of Pride winners, including the chance to go behind the scenes at a Super League club of their choice, season tickets, Grand Final tickets, an invitation to the end of season Man of Steel Awards and, of course, BRUT product.Nominate now at www.brutformen.co.uk/superleague or via hard copy forms, which can be collected from the Langtree Park.last_img read more

WAYNE Bennett has named Jonny Lomax and Mark Perci

first_imgWAYNE Bennett has named Jonny Lomax and Mark Percival in his England 19-man squad for this Saturday’s international Test against France in Avignon at Parc des Sports (6.30pm CET).They are part of six uncapped players which include Luke Gale, Scott Taylor, Stefan Ratchford and Stevie Ward.England head coach Wayne Bennett said: “The players have trained well all week and are looking forward to the trip to France.“There’s plenty of competition for places in this squad and it’s good to see a few new faces in there possibly having a run out in Avignon.“The week leading into this game has been good and the training facilities in London at the Honourable Artillery Company have been outstanding.“France are a passionate team and will have plenty of support behind them in Avignon. There’s talent in their side and some Super League experience so we know what to expect on Saturday. As the away side, it’s the kind of environment that I want my side to be challenged in this international Test.”England 19-man squad (professional club and community club in brackets):Kevin Brown (Widnes Vikings, Thatto Heath Crusaders)George Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor)Thomas Burgess (South Sydney Rabbitohs, Dewsbury Moor)Daryl Clark (Warrington Wolves, Fryston Warriors)Mike Cooper (Warrington Wolves/St George-Illwarra Dragons, Latchford Albion)Liam Farrell (Wigan Warriors, Wigan St Patricks)Luke Gale (Castleford Tigers, Middleton Marauders)James Graham (Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs, Blackbrook)Ryan Hall (Leeds Rhinos, Oulton Raiders)Josh Hodgson (Canberra Raiders, East Hull)Jonny Lomax (St Helens, Orrell St James)Jermaine McGillvary (Huddersfield Giants, Deighton Juniors)Mark Percival (St Helens, Halton Farnworth Hornets)Stefan Ratchford (Warrington Wolves, Wigan St Patricks)Scott Taylor (Hull FC, Skirlaugh)Stevie Ward (Leeds Rhinos, Churwell Chiefs)Kallum Watkins (Leeds Rhinos, Latchford Albion)Elliott Whitehead (Canberra Raiders, West Bowling)Gareth Widdop (St George Illawarra Dragons, King Cross)The game against France will be broadcast live in UK from 5.20pm on the BBC Red Button and BBC Sport website allowing fans get a first glimpse of Wayne Bennett’s England team in action.last_img read more

Saints will take on Catalans Dragons on Sunday Aug

first_imgSaints will take on Catalans Dragons on Sunday August 5 at the Macron Stadium in Bolton.The game kicks off at 12:30pm and a massive Saints contingent will make the short journey to back the boys.You can buy CAT 3 tickets online, via the Ticket Office and from 01744 455 052 – they are priced at £25 for adults, £17.50 for concessions and £12.50 for juniors.If you’re a 2018 Member who didn’t take advantage of the exclusivity period then you can still claim your discounted tickets from the Ticket Office and via 01744 455 052.All tickets are Reserved Seating and on purchase you will receive the best available.Prices: Cat 3 (Non-member) Cat 3 (Member’s Discount)Adults£25£21Concessions£17.50£13.50Juniors (16 & under)£12.50£8.50Please note Concessions are Senior Citizens 65 and over, Students upon production of a valid student card and Serving Military with valid ID.Fans can travel with us too – prices are £9 members and £11 for non-members. The coach leaves the Totally Wicked Stadium at 10am. Fans have to pre-book either at the Ticket Office, by calling 01744 455 052 and non-members can buy at www.saintssuperstore.com.last_img read more

Water main break causing water outages in New Hanover County

first_img Hagerty said he does not know how many customers are affected or how long it will last.We will bring you more information as it becomes available. NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Cape Fear Public Utility Authority is working to repair a water main break in northern New Hanover County.CFPUA spokesman Vaughn Hagerty said a water main broke somewhere near 1014 Kenningston Street.- Advertisement – last_img

Air Malta set to carry 146m passengers this year

first_img <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> Air Malta estimates it will be carrying over 1.46 million passengers over the next seven months with a fleet of ten aircraft.This is part of the airline’s ambitious summer schedule which launches on Sunday and intends to offer 188 weekly flights to 42 destinations.Air Malta is also looking to increase the frequency of its flights to key destinations like Paris Charles De Gaulle and Tunis, as well as the return of services to Cairo Egypt and for the first time to Warsaw, Poland.Preparing for the launch of the Summer services, Air Malta’s Chief Executive Capt. Clifford Chetcuti said, ‘The planned increase in customers, routes and increased frequencies, highlight our efforts to better connect the Islands. This schedule signifies a strong commitment by Air Malta towards the local tourism industry and shows the support the Airline gives to the Islands’ economic growth. In line with our stated objective to improve customer experience, this summer we will welcome two more brand new Airbus A320NEOs to our fleet which will offer added comfort to our customers.’In alphabetical order, these are all the locations that Air Malta will be flying to from March 31st; Amsterdam, Birmingham, Berlin, Bristol, Brussels, Bucharest, Cagliari, Catania, Casablanca, Cairo, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Geneva, Hamburg, Ibiza, Lisbon, Leipzig, London Gatwick, London Heathrow, London Southend, Lourdes / Tarbes, Lyon, Kiev, Malaga, Manchester, Marseille, Munich, Milan, Moscow, Palermo, Paris Charles De Gaulle, Paris Orly, Prague, Rome, St Petersburg, Tel Aviv, Tbilisi, Tunis, Venice, Vienna, Warsaw and Zurich.WhatsApp SharePrintlast_img read more