A new user-led campaign has issued a controversial call to replace out-of-work disability benefits with a new system that recognises that many sick and disabled people cannot find work because of their “reduced productivity”.The Dead Parrot campaign is the latest to call for the government to scrap employment and support allowance (ESA) and its eligibility test, the work capability assessment.But its emphasis on “reduced productivity” and the argument that a replacement for ESA must recognise the “ruthless” nature of the labour market has led some disabled activists to brand the campaign as “dangerous”.Pat’s Petition and CarerWatch, the two user-led groups that have launched the campaign, say the labour market allows only people who “can do the most work for the least money” to find employment.They argue that this means that many sick and disabled people will never find work, because of their “reduced productivity”, even if employers make reasonable adjustments for them.Because the government has made it so tough for people to claim unconditional support – through the ESA support group – many have been left in no-man’s land, not qualifying for the support group but with no chance of finding paid work.Pat’s Petition and CarerWatch say the government could address this by easing the ESA support group eligibility criteria, amending equality laws and intervening in the jobs market.They say: “Until this changes, people whose productivity is reduced won’t be able to gain employment and so need a safe secure income without threats and conditionality.”So they argue that the replacement for ESA should be paid – without any conditionality – to anyone who cannot find work because of reduced productivity.The idea has won support from some prominent disabled campaigners, including Professor Peter Beresford, Spartacus researcher Stef Benstead, union activist Sean McGovern, and Rick Burgess, formerly with the New Approach campaign and the WOW petition.Pat’s Petition (PP) and CarerWatch are now encouraging other campaigners to discuss the idea on the PP Facebook page and website.But their campaign has already divided disabled campaigners, particularly because of its focus on “reduced productivity”.A statement from the national steering group of Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) said this focus – with the phrase mentioned three times on the website – was “dangerous” because it implied that all disabled people have “reduced productivity”.DPAC said the new campaign failed to focus on disabled people’s support needs, or attempt to challenge issues such as government cuts to Access to Work.DPAC said: “We feel this has not been thought through properly in terms of negative implications.”And it warned that the new campaign was “totally naïve” in suggesting that the government would consider signing up to its demands.It also warned that the campaign could provide ammunition for work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith, who has suggested that people in the ESA work-related activity group could work a few hours a week, and welfare reform minister Lord Freud, who has spoken approvingly of paying some disabled people a lower hourly rate because they are “less productive”.DPAC also pointed to the controversy in 2011 when the right-wing Tory MP Philip Davies argued in a Commons debate on the minimum wage that employers should be allowed to pay people with mental health conditions less than the minimum wage because they were not “as productive in their work as someone who does not have a disability of that nature”.The DPAC statement adds: “The DPAC national steering group feel there are too many problems and negative implications with [the campaign] to give our support to it.”Frances Kelly, a founder member of PP and CarerWatch, accepted that their campaign risked entrenching employer discrimination, but said it was vital to find a new approach that “closely models reality in the job market and helps and protects everyone”.She said they had been left with no option to their new model by the government’s insistence that “the only way out of poverty is work”, even though the job market was “ruthlessly competitive”.Kelly said the system assumed a “cliff face” from the support group to everyone else, which made life intolerable for those who cannot compete on a level playing-field.Pat Onions (pictured), founder of Pat’s Petition, said: “We hope that this campaign will put pressure on Iain Duncan Smith to ensure a safety net that supports all sick and disabled people into work at their own pace, without the sanctions that have been such a major part of the current system.”She added: “We are aware that we are liable to being accused of siding with [ministers] and of suggesting that sick and disabled people are less productive and therefore of less value.”But she added: “We want to acknowledge that some of us are indeed less productive: why are people so scared to say the obvious? But that does not make any of us less valuable for that.”
“Maybe they mean that we are asking for something that we don’t deserve. I think they’re wrong,” she said. “I see all these men starting to build up this mob mentality…this attack on women is also an attack on men.”Claire Schlecht drums and chants.In fact several others at the rally made a point of addressing men’s role in advancing the rights of women. Lulu Reboyoso, a women’s rights activist from Mexico, brought up the plight of female workers suffering abuse in the workplace — or, in the case of agricultural workers, in the fields. But she also called out to men to ask for their support in advancing women’s rights.“It’s not a fight against them. It’s a fight against a system,” she said.Lara, the Horace Mann teacher, called on other men to support women in their push against discrimination. He noted that as a teacher, conversations with the families of his students often involve only the mothers, many of whom are working two jobs to keep their families afloat.“Men, instead of trying to be helpful, we’re often an additional weight,” Lara said. “It’s the women who have fought and struggled…the men need to get with the program.”Frank Lara encourages men to support women in their pursuit of equality.The rally, which proceeded unhindered by the hecklers, was organized by a group of activist organizations advocating for women’s rights, socialism, and social justice and drew a crowd of some 30 people during the Saturday afternoon showers to listen to speakers, listen to the music of Vixen Noir, and garner support and interest from passerby.Performer Vixen Noir sings about power and femininity.One speaker took particular aim at men who abandon the mothers of their children and at governments that legislate restrictions on abortion and women’s health services.“There are laws that dictate what I can and cannot do with my body,” said Rosa Peñate, a Mission resident. “We, the women, are governed by laws created by men who basically make up the government.”A man dances to the songs and chants of women at a women’s rights rally.Tina Landis of the Party for Socialism and Liberation also attributed the oppression of women to systemic economic problems.“Workers are being squeezed more and more every day…and women often bear the brunt of this system, especially women of color,” she said.Sexism also contributes to the creation of “rape culture,” an especially pronounced problem on school campuses, one speaker said.“I’m 17, and in my high school I know many people who have been sexually assaulted” said Ruby Elson, who helped facilitate and animate speakers at the rally. She decried the attitude that women owe men affection or sex in exchange for courtesy, saying, “women are not machines to put kindness coins into until sex falls out…We don’t owe anyone anything. Not a smile, not a giggle, not our time.”17-year-old Ruby Elson addresses women gathered for a feminist rally. At a rally for women’s rights to mark International Women’s Day, a few passerby shouted “bitch” and “shut up” at speakers who assembled in the rain on Saturday afternoon at the 24th Street BART Plaza.“You’re a bitch,” one man shouted at Frank Lara, a teacher at Buena Vista Horace Mann school nearby and one of a handful of men to attend the rally, as Lara encouraged men to support women in their pursuit of equality.As speakers addressed rape culture, violence against women and economic and racial inequality, every once in a while a voice could be heard shouting back trying to silence them – unsuccessfully.Claire Schlecht, an organizer with Women Organized to Resist and Defend — the primary organization behind the rally — attempted to rebuke the hecklers as she concluded the rally. 0% Tags: protests • women Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0%
Email Address,0% Local Democratic Socialists to host politician on the rise Tuesday — and hope their time is next Update (7/31/18): The venue has been changed to Grey Area on Mission Street. But, alas, any extra tickets sold out faster than one could say, “Ocasio-Cortez.” Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — the 28-year-old political newbie who upset Democratic party fixture Rep. Joe Crowley in a New York primary in June — will stop by the Mission District’s El Rio bar on Tuesday. For many of the city’s young and left-leaning denizens, the visit is a big deal. All 300 tickets sold out in seven hours, shortly after they became available last Wednesday afternoon, said organizer Claire Lau, an interim co-chair of the San Francisco Progressive Alliance. “We’re exploring larger venues,” she said. “There are a lot of people who are wanting to buy tickets, and we’re trying to see if we can accommodate.” Around 5,000 people were interested on Facebook, she said — but she and other organizers are unsure they will be able to locate a larger venue in time. Ocasio-Cortez, who less than a year ago was bartending at a Mexican restaurant in New York City, earned instant celebrity status after she unseated Crowley, a 10-term Congressman and aspiring House Speaker, in New York’s 14th Congressional District. She is expected to defeat her Republican opponent, Anthony Pappas, in November — and become the youngest woman ever to be elected to Congress. Her win has further galvanized a new movement of mostly young Democratic Socialists around the country. Democratic Socialists of America membership jumped to 47,000, from 41,000, nationwide following her win. Ocasio-Cortez’s visit is also a nod to this city’s ascendant DSA movement. In San Francisco, DSA membership gained around 180 members since June, and now stands at 1,000. But, perhaps more importantly, the group has proven itself to be a political force in this city. The DSA was instrumental in passing June’s Proposition F, which would provide city-funded attorneys for tenants facing eviction. At the same time, it played a major role in organizing against the Police Officers Association’s Taser measure, Prop. H, which would have rapidly armed officers with the electronic weapons and broadly permitted their use on members of the public. Despite the police union’s well-funded effort and pre-election polls claiming nearly 80 percent of city residents supported Taser use, Prop. H went down in flames by a 60-40 split. In short, the local DSA and national candidates like Ocasio-Cortez are having a moment — one that could be a first step to large-scale political relevancy. “Before [Ocasio-Cortez] won, a lot of people could marginalize socialist movements by saying, ‘They’re never going to win and they’re on the fringe,’” said Shanti Singh, a co-chair of the San Francisco DSA. “It builds on, locally, what we were able to do with Prop. F. People are starting to realize that [democratic socialism] is a force that can deliver.” San Francisco’s DSA chapter was virtually nonexistent before summer 2016. It was then made up of only “five bearded white dudes,” Singh said. But during the heat of the 2016 presidential election and rise of Bernie Sanders — who considers himself a Democratic Socialist — membership steadily grew. “We now have 16 committees in San Francisco alone,” Singh said, adding that those committees are focused on a range of local issues, such as housing, homelessness and environmental justice.This has, for a certain stripe of San Francisco or Bay Area politician, become an attractive label to self-apply. Several candidates for city office are now identifying as Democratic Socialists. In San Francisco, Tony Kelly, a longtime activist and a member of the DSA and San Francisco Berniecrats, is running for District 10 supervisor in November. And Dean Preston, who narrowly lost to London Breed two years ago in District 5, is now running for that seat again as a Democratic Socialist. In the East Bay, Cat Brooks is running for mayor of Oakland as a Democratic Socialist. Gayle McLaughlin, the former Richmond mayor and a Green Party member, is running for California lieutenant governor with the backing of the East Bay DSA. Richmond City Council Member Jovanka Beckles, who is running for the California State Assembly, also has the endorsement of the East Bay DSA, which grew 260 members since Ocasio-Cortez’s win and now has a membership of around 1,200. It’s Beckles, an openly lesbian African American woman who, more than any other Bay Area politician, gives local DSA members hope they’ve found their West Coast Ocasio-Cortez. Ocasio-Cortez’s visit will only further inspire an existing local movement, said District 6 Supervisor Jane Kim, who helped organize the Congressional candidate’s journey to the Bay Area. “There’s strong interest in her, and we want to make sure we’re supporting her in San Francisco,” Kim said. Progressive activist movements, like DSA and the Berniecrats, have long been present in San Francisco, Kim continued. “What’s different now,” she said, “is a connection to a national movement.”Example A: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. “She’s the embodiment of what we want the next generation of people who work in government representing us to look like,” Lau said. “Running our own candidate has been on people’s minds for a while. The most inspiring thing is: It’s actually doable now.” Subscribe to Mission Local’s daily newsletter
Subscribe to Mission Local’s daily newsletter It felt like the mass of people had gathered for a sporting event or an outdoor music festival — or even a New Year’s Eve celebration. The countdown started, caught on and spread: “Five! Four! Three! Two! One!” At the stroke of 4:20 p.m. on Saturday, 4/20, cheers erupted. So, too, did a great and grand exhale of marijuana — a collective breath picked up and bandied about by a wind that clocked in at 28 mph at SFO.No matter. “The day of marijuana,” as one ice cream vendor called 4/20, partied on to the good of all. “If there are more people, there are more sales,” the vendor said in Spanish.And customers abounded. Coachella T-shirted people stood in long, snaking lines for the bathrooms. The din of conversations blended together with music playing on portable speakers. Dogs’ ears perked up and noses pointed attentively at the odor of food mixed with marijuana. Some friends greeted each other with high fives, and another pair of friends walked along a promenade holding beer bottles in one hand and their cell phones in the other.“Edibles!” a vendor shouted into the wind as he walked through the crowd. Email Address Groups huddled along the slope of the hills and on the flats trying to smoke weed. “Ah, this lighter doesn’t go,” said one female park-goer as she attempted to light a yellow glass pipe in the biting wind on the top of a hill. But many of the lighters and matches worked just fine.Nearby, a gust of wind caught a random puff of smoke that appeared several feet wide.A man wearing a plush cheetah onesie carried what seemed to be a children’s scooter over his shoulder.The gay rights activist group Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence marched solemnly around the border of the park — drag queens dressed in all-white nun outfits with gaudy makeup and chest hair prominently displayed. The sisters marched (mostly) silently, as is the custom, in observance of their organization’s 40th anniversary. There will be a Hunky Jesus competition on Easter Sunday.Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. Photo by Brian PerlmanSan Francisco Park Ranger J. Whitted spoke calmly as he sat in his all-terrain vehicle — 4/20 is just another day at work for him. Most of the other park rangers patrolled Golden Gate Park for the officially-sanctioned, and much more massive, 4/20 event.Whitted said his task today was to protect community members and help them celebrate safely and responsibly. He knows that there will be much marijuana use, and he said he would try to curtail it by writing some warnings, but he’s mainly concerned with the violation of other park rules, such as bringing glass or grills into the park or barbecuing.He was also concerned that other hard drugs that might be in the mix. “There’s some stuff that could be mixed with fentanyl. Fentanyl has been a very bad drug that people have been ingesting, and in some cases, dying from it,” he said, acknowledging that there haven’t been any recent fentanyl incidents in this park that he can recall. “This year has been good, so I can’t complain,” he said.Downhill, San Francisco State University students walked through the crowd selling lumpia, and another student sat on a park bench selling Cheetos with hot sauce. They were raising money for their student organization, Devoted Women for Change.One of the students said that their organization’s mission is “to empower women, allowing women of all cultures to be welcome with us.”It was Dolores Park as it often is, except that on 4/20 especially, the high revelers puffed, smoked, vaped, and hit bongs on into the late afternoon and evening.
SAINTS have announced their 19-man squad for Sunday’s First Utility Super League match against Castleford Tigers.Jon Wilkin, Adam Swift and Lance Hohaia are recalled to the side but Alex Walmsley is unavailable through suspension.Nathan Brown will choose from:2. Tommy Makinson 3. Jordan Turner, 5. Adam Swift, 6. Lance Hohaia, 7. Luke Walsh, 8. Mose Masoe, 9. James Roby, 10. Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, 11. Sia Soliola, 12. Jon Wilkin, 13. Willie Manu, 15. Mark Flanagan, 17. Paul Wellens, 22. Mark Percival, 24. Gary Wheeler, 26. Matty Dawson, 27. Greg Richards, 28. Luke Thompson, 33. Andre Savelio.Daryl Powell will choose his Tigers side from:2. Kirk Dixon, 3. Michael Shenton, 4. Jake Webster, 5. Justin Carney, 6. Luke Dorn, 7. Marc Sneyd, 8. Andy Lynch, 9. Adam Milner, 10. Craig Huby, 11. Grant Millington, 12. Weller Hauraki, 13. Nathan Massey, 14. Daryl Clark, 16. Oliver Holmes, 18. Frankie Mariano, 19. Scott Wheeldon, 20. Jamie Ellis, 26. Liam Finn, 32. Lee Jewitt.The game kicks off at 3pm and the referee will be Richard Silverwood.Tickets are still on same for the game from the Ticket Office at Langtree Park, by calling 01744 455052 or by logging on here.
THE 2016 Rugby League season will be kick-started by popular rock band We Are The Ocean at this year’s Rugby League Rocks event that is being held at New Dock Hall, Royal Armouries, Leeds on Saturday January 30 from 7.00pm.Fresh from their recent appearance on Channel 4’s Sunday Brunch programme, the Essex four-piece will embark on a European tour on January 17 taking in countries such as Germany, Holland and Switzerland before heading to Leeds to treat fans to a lively performance that should set the season up in style.We Are The Ocean, who consist of Liam Cromby (vocals), Alfie Scully (guitar), Jack Spence (bass) and Tom Whittaker (drums), released their fourth album ‘Ark’ last year – tracks ‘Ark’, ‘Holy Fire’ and ‘Good For You’ were all play listed at BBC Radio 1.Their most recent release is a cover version of London Grammar’s hit ‘Hey Now’ after amazing responses to the band’s performance of the song in Radio 1’s Live Lounge in November.“We’re delighted to be playing at the launch of Super League 2016. Rugby League has attitude and pace that few other sports can match. This season can’t come soon enough,” said Liam Cromby.First Utility Super League General Manager, Blake Solly added: “Last year’s Rugby League Rocks event was an instant hit with fans which showcased the talent within our game alongside first-class entertainment. As always, we’re going to go bigger and better in 2016.“Music and sport go hand in hand. Booking a band like We Are The Ocean really sets the bar high for our season launch. Rugby League supporters love a high energy performance – I’m confident this will deliver.“It seems like such a long time since last season ended in dramatic style. We can’t wait to get started. It promises to be another ‘stop & take notice’ year for Rugby League.”Tickets for Rugby League Rocks at New Dock Hall, Royal Armouries, Leeds cost just £10. To purchase your tickets, please visit www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk or call the Rugby League Ticket Hotline on 0844 856 1113.
ANYONE witnessing Friday’s game could be forgiven for thinking that the Saints Reserves had just been thrown together an hour before kick off without a game plan and told to go and play. In defence of coaches Ian Talbot and Paul Wellens that couldn’t be further from the truth, writes Graham Henthorne.The problem is that for most of the game the team just didn’t stick to it. But when they did they scored and in the end still managed to come away with the win.The first half definitely belonged to the visitors as the Reserves gifted them possession and position allowing them to show what a good side they are.Two tries in the first quarter opened up a 12 point lead but both came off the backs of good Saints play that came unstuck with poor passing.The first was a 90 metre sprint to the line after a massive 70 metre touch-finder signalled the return from injury of Danny Richardson.The second came two tackles after an 80 metre interception had been superbly run down by Ben Morris.The Saints finally put a good series of sets together putting the visitors under pressure with a repeat set coming from a high spiral Richardson bomb and a fabulous chase from Chris Follin, Alex Eckley and Olly Davies which forced the full back in goal.From the restart Follin and Regan Grace set the stage for a flowing passing move to the right from which Shannon McDonnell set Dave Eccleston through the line and the centre’s high ball put his winger Ricky Bailey in at the corner. Richardson’s majestic conversion against the grain from the touchline sealed the score.Five minutes later and the Saints could have gone in level as Grace bounced off four defenders before escaping through the line. The speedster was away from the line with only the full back against him and Richardson screaming up on his outside. He did everything right apart from passing the ball instead deciding to hold on and was swallowed up by the full back.It could only get better, couldn’t it? That was the gist of the half time talk and from a possession point of view things certainly did with the Saints completing at 85% which ultimately took its toll on the bigger FC pack as the half drew on.But not before the Saints went further behind to a missed tackle try under the posts.The final 20 minutes, however, well and truly belonged to the Saints as the Reserves gained repeat set after repeat set due to some fabulous last tackle kicking from Tom Connick and second half substitute Brad Billsborough.The comeback was started by Jake Spedding who made amends for some earlier mistakes jinking his way over down the left.Minutes later Captain Olly Davies knocked on over the line but was soon back on the attack as the visitors knocked on. Having swapped positions with McDonnell Bailey showed how dangerous he can be from full back scoring with a lovely arcing run to the right corner.The Saints were completely dominant now and yet another repeat set was followed by a Billsborough try as the young scrumhalf reached out of the tackle to put the Saints ahead for the first time.The frustration started to manifest itself in the visitor’s ranks as a trademark big hit from Liam Cooper resulted in a little scuffle.More was to come, however, as a scrum on the FC 10 metre line was won by the Saints as they pushed the bigger but wearier pack off the ball and they didn’t like it at all. From the resultant penalty Billsborough put the Saints six clear and they played out the final minutes to take the win.In the cold light of day this was a good win for a young, inexperienced side against a side filled with bigger, older players which was built around a good defensive display and a massive will to win. But it could and should have been so much easier had anyone been able to take control of the play and stick to the game plan.There were yet more debuts at this level for Jorge Lewtas, Jordan Olmez and Josh Eaves as the Reserves continues to fulfil its purpose of exposing players to greater challenges.Match Summary:Saints:Tries: Ricky Bailey (30 & 66), Jake Spedding (60), Brad Billsborough (71).Goals: Danny Richardson 1/1, Brad Billsborough 3/4.Hull FC:Tries: Mike Adlard (7), Jack Downs (17), Jez Litten (52).Goals: Harry Tyson-Wilson 3/3.Half Time: 6-12Full Time: 24-18Teams:Saints:23. Shannon McDonnell; 29. Ricky Bailey, 3. Dave Eccleston, 33. Jake Spedding, 34. Regan Grace; 6. Tom Connick, 31. Danny Richardson; 8. Levy Nzoungou, 9. Aaron Smith, 22. Olly Davies, 11. Owen Smith, 12. Ben Morris, 13. Liam Cooper. Subs: 4. Chris Follin, 7. Brad Billsborough, 10. Alex Eckley, 14. Josh Eaves, 15. Lewis Furlong, 16. Jordan Gibbons, 17. Jorge Lewtas, 18. Jordan Olmez, 20. Callum Hazzard, 22. Tom Whittle.Hull FC:1. Jack Sanderson; 2. Mike Adlard, 3. Connor Bower, 4. Zeus Silk, 5. Callum Lancaster; 6. Bobby Downs, 7. Harry Tyson-Wilson; 8. Masimbaashe Matongo, 9. Josh Wood, 10. Brad Fash, 11. Jansin Turgut, 12. Jack Downs, 13. Jordan Lane. Subs: 14. Niall Sidney, 15. Ash Bastiman, 16. Brad Clavering, **. Ross Osbourne, **. Jez Litten.
The duo will feature in England’s first World Cup final for 22 years.Roby will start the match which kicks off at 9am UK time, whilst Walmsley will come off the bench.England’s most capped player, James Graham, will take his total up to 39 at the weekend as the prop forward appears in his first World Cup final for his country.The fomer Saint made his England debut back in 2008 and has featured in three World Cup tournaments (2008, 2013 and 2017) for the national side.England Squad:1. Gareth Widdop 2. Jermaine McGillvary 3. Kallum Watkins 4. John Bateman 5. Ryan Hall 6. Kevin Brown 7. Luke Gale 8. Chris Hill 9. James Roby 10. James Graham 11. Sam Burgess 12. Elliott Whitehead 13. Sean O’Loughlin © 14. Alex Walmsley 15. Thomas Burgess 16. Ben Currie 17. Chris Heighington 18. Jonny Lomax 19. Scott Taylor 20. George Williams 21. Mark Percival
Chaulk pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter.Matthew EsyterShe sold the controlled substance Opana, a time-released opioid based pill, to Eyster in April of 2016. Eyster overdosed and died.Chaulk received two consecutive sentences. A judge sentenced her to between 19 to 32 months in prison for involuntary manslaughter and between 14 to 26 months for selling a controlled substance.Related Article: Hundreds to attend North Carolina summit on opioid epidemicAssistant District Attorney Jason Smith says this is going to hold more drug dealers accountable for deaths of addicts. BURGAW, NC (WWAY) — A Pender County woman is going to prison for selling drugs that led to an overdose.Melinda Chaulk was originally charged with 2nd degree murder in the death of Matthew Eyster, but in court Wednesday morning, she accepted a plea deal.- Advertisement –
The lot’s owner, Richard Burnette, is selling the property for $500,000.According to town documents, the town would buy this property as open space, which would be part of their adopted parks, recreation, and open space master plan.At the meeting, council will also consider adopting a new 35 mile per hour speed limit ordinance. They will also discuss setting a public hearing to amend allowances for food trucks.Related Article: Food disposal and household waste sites in Carolina BeachA public hearing will also take place Tuesday night to allow a pedal powered pub that sells alcohol. CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) — The Town of Carolina beach is considering an offer to purchase part of Freeman Park.On Tuesday night, council will vote whether to adopt a motion to buy a narrow strip of land known as Lot 6B.- Advertisement –