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Drought, distance drive health woes: CWA

by admin on 18/04/2019

CWA NSW President Annette Turner says the service gap in the bush is now on the brink of crisis.Regional and remote communities hundreds of kilometres from medical and mental health services are neglecting their wellbeing as drought tightens its stranglehold, the NSW Country Women’s Association warns.
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President Annette Turner says the service gap in the bush is now on the brink of crisis.

Health services for those around the far western community of Whitecliffs, where Ms Turner lives, are often remote.

When people there need specialist treatment, she said, they must to travel to a city and the costs quickly stack up.

“While you’re there you’re leaving the farm, the family, the cost of accommodation is exorbitant,” she told AAP on Tuesday.

“It’s very expensive and people are going to the first, initial visit and not going back because they can’t afford it.”

Ms Turner has spent the week speaking out about the lack of GPs, psychologists, dentists and substance abuse counsellors in the bush in a bid to raise awareness of the divide between urban and regional NSW.

Top of her mind are regional ns who she says are putting cancer treatment aside because they can’t afford to leave the farm – their only income source.

“They’re putting it on the backburner but we all know the outcome of cancer,” she said.

The drought might hit the farm first but it doesn’t take long before the regional towns which depend on agriculture feel the pinch. And social problems soon follow.

Data from the Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research reveals all but two regions of NSW, outside Sydney, have experienced increases in methamphetamine use and possession over the past five years.

Ms Turner said alcohol and drugs were impacting whole families and meal times in the bush “aren’t happy times” with parents worried about bills with dry fields.

“Obviously we know what happens without (drug and alcohol treatment) services,” she said.

“We need to be aware of this with the drought – it’s so easy to have that extra beer and wine to forget what’s happening in the world. It can sneak up on you.”

Isolation and long working hours also drive up mental health risks, she added.

“People are not getting out and seeing each other, it’s so difficult. You can’t ask people if they’re okay, they’re working daylight till dark – and longer.”

Telehealth, video chatting with doctors in urban centres, could fix some of the issues, Ms Turner said.

“But we still don’t have great connectivity in some areas.”

What her branch of the CWA are calling for is financial incentives and infrastructure investment that will see GPs and other service providers to move to the bush and stay.

“Seven million ns live outside our major cities but when it comes to allocating health funding, this level of representation doesn’t seem to count for much,” she said.

Amway founder Richard DeVos dies at 92

by admin on 18/04/2019

Over five decades, Richard DeVos’ Amway became a multibillion-dollar international corporation.US billionaire Richard DeVos, co-founder of direct-selling giant Amway, owner of the Orlando Magic and father-in-law of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, has died. He was 92.
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Family spokesman Nick Wasmiller says DeVos died at his western Michigan home due to complications from an infection.

DeVos was born in Grand Rapids, not far from Ada, the community about 220km west of Detroit where he later lived and died.

In 1949, he and friend Jay Van Andel took $US49 ($A68) and invested the modest amount into manufacturer and vitamin direct-seller Nutrilite. They became independent vitamin distributors and later used the company’s person-to-person selling approach when starting Amway in Ada with an all-purpose household cleaning product.

They coined the name Amway as an abbreviation of American Way. Over five decades, Amway became a multibillion-dollar international corporation. Van Andel died in 2004.

“Rich and my father built this company from the ground up, and in many ways Rich was the heart and soul of Amway,” said Steve Van Andel, Amway’s chair. “His vision and spirit inspired our employees and independent business owners for more than 50 years.”

Michigan’s Republican governor described DeVos as “an incredible businessman, philanthropist and true Michigander.”

Former President George W. Bush called DeVos “one of the great entrepreneurs – and great Americans – of our time”.

“He used his business to empower others and advance the universal values of freedom, opportunity, compassion, and personal responsibility,” Bush said. “Rich made his country and his community better, and he was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather.”

DeVos, who served as Amway’s president until 1993, also was involved in the NBA, buying the Magic from a group headed by Orlando real estate developer William duPont III in 1991 for $US70 million ($A97 million).

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said DeVos formed a deep bond with the city of Orlando, “and whether hosting the finals or All-Star festivities, he was always incredibly welcoming to the NBA family.”

His son, Dick, is married to Betsy DeVos, who was appointed Education Secretary by President Donald Trump. He is also survived by three other children, two sisters and a number of grandchildren.

Services have not been finalised.

Libs could blame Canberra for a Wagga loss

by admin on 18/04/2019

With the NSW government facing potential defeat in the Wagga Wagga by-election this weekend, Premier Gladys Berejiklian appears ready to blame Liberal Party bloodletting in Canberra.
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The contest is so tight you could “flip a coin” to decide Saturday’s poll, one senior state Liberal told AAP.

The MP claims the messy federal leadership coup that saw Malcolm Turnbull dumped as prime minister, combined with a local corruption scandal, has seriously eroded the party’s once safe 12.9 per cent margin in Wagga.

Ms Berejiklian on Friday conceded the Liberals could be punished for focusing on themselves rather than the community over the past few months.

“What I’ve learned during this campaign is that the focus always has to be about the community – not about politicians, not about what we say to each other,” Ms Berejiklian told reporters in Wagga.

“There is a possibility we may not hold the seat.”

The coalition’s primary vote has plummeted to 25 per cent, according to a recent ReachTel poll published by News Corp ahead of the by-election, which was prompted by the resignation of disgraced local Liberal MP Daryl Maguire.

Running a Nationals candidate may have limited the damage following Mr Maguire’s dodgy dealings, insiders say, but no coalition candidate would have been immune from the fallout of the federal leadership coup.

“Who would have foreseen the shit show in Canberra happening weeks before the Wagga by-election,” the senior Liberal MP said.

The Nationals agreed not to run in the by-election to avoid a three-cornered contest but Labor candidate Dan Hayes says that’s pushed some local Nats to support the main independent rather than the Liberal Party’s Julie Ham.

“They’re not here handing out for the Liberal candidate, the Nationals have absolutely vacated this space and some have shifted over to Joe McGirr,” Mr Hayes, a local councillor, told AAP.

Dr McGirr, a local doctor and academic running as an independent, believes voters have been turned off by the Liberals’ sense of entitlement and is confident they have the appetite for change.

“A lot of people are really excited today, there’s a sense to make a change,” he told AAP at a pre-polling booth in Wagga.

“It has been encouraging and it has been good for the seat; it energises people, it gets them thinking.”

Labor leader Luke Foley argues Wagga voters have a “once-in-a-generation” opportunity to elect a non-Liberal MP in a seat that’s been held by the conservative party for 60 years.

“This is the one chance the people of this electorate get, perhaps in their lifetimes, to send a very strong message to the Liberals and that’s ‘Stop taking us for granted’,” Mr Foley told reporters.

Oscars scrap new ‘popular film’ category

by admin on 18/04/2019

The Academy had sowed confusion by not detailing how it would determine the category’s eligibility.The Academy of Motion Pictures says it will not go ahead with its proposed new ‘Popular Film’ Oscar category at next year’s ceremony.
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The proposal, announced just a month ago, was met with a huge backlash from the movie industry and film reviewers who said it would create a two-tier system of popular and unpopular films.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said in a statement that “implementing any new award nine months into the year creates challenges for films that have already been released” and that the proposal needed further discussion.

It said it would “not present the new Oscars category at the upcoming 91st awards” in February 2019.

“There has been a wide range of reactions to the introduction of a new award, and we recognise the need for further discussion with our members,” Academy Chief Executive Dawn Hudson said in Thursday’s statement.

The idea of a separate category for popular films was widely seen as a bid to increase television viewers for the annual Oscar ceremony. The US audience for the March 2018 ceremony was 26.5 million viewers, the smallest in the awards’ 90-year history

Critics said the idea would pit “popular films,” such as superhero box office hits, against what would be seen as “unpopular,” smaller art house fare.

In recent years, Academy voters have chosen independent films like Moonlight and The Shape of Water, as best picture winners, rather than box office hits like the Star Wars franchise or superhero movies such as 2017 blockbuster Wonder Woman.

The Academy in August sowed confusion by not detailing how it would determine eligibility for which films would compete in the popular film category, as opposed to the traditional best picture race.

On Thursday, the Academy said it would go ahead with plans to shorten the annual awards show to three hours. It said between six and eight categories would be presented during commercial breaks in the televised ceremony, and then edited and aired later in the broadcast.

It did not specify which of the 24 awards handed out at the ceremony would be presented off camera, but said they would be rotated each year. Technical awards such as editing, costumes, and sound are expected to be most affected by the change.

The 2019 Oscar ceremony will take place in Los Angeles on February 24.

Activist locked to coal train in third Newcastle port protest this week

by admin on 18/04/2019

FOR the third time this week protesters shut the coal line at Sandgate.
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A young Frontline Action on Coal activist, identified only asCeder, locked on to the side of acoaltrain stopping all rail into Newcastle Port.

About 6.45am Friday police were called to therail corridor.It took the work of Police Rescue and the Bomb Disposal Unit to remove the woman

The 18-year-old was uninjured during the incident and arrested at the scene.

She was taken to Newcastle Police Station and charged with enter enclosed lands, obstruct a railway, and not to interfere with train.

The woman was granted conditional bail and is expected to appear in Newcastle Local Court on October 4.

“I’m scared, I want a future, I want to be able to live in this world and not face the effects of polluted air, polluted water,eat food and eventually have kids of my own some day that can experience the beauty in this world, not live in a toxic wasteland,” a statement from Ceder read.

On Wednesdaya Newcastle teenager suspended himself from a 10-metre tripod at the same location.

Officers attended and arrested a 22-year-old man and the17-year-old boy.

The man was charged with enter inclosed lands interferes with, or attempts or intends to interfere with, the conduct of the business or undertaking and cause obstruction to railway locomotive or rolling stock.

Activist locked to coal train in third Newcastle port protest TweetFacebook This week’s protestsHe was granted conditional bail and is due to appear at Newcastle Local Court on Thursday September 27.

The teenager was charged with enter enclosed lands interferes with, or attempts or intends to interfere with, the conduct of the business or undertaking, enter enclosed land or not prescribed premises without lawful excuse and cause obstruction to railway locomotive or rolling stock.

He was granted conditional bail and is due to appear at a children’s court on Monday September 24.

On Monday university student Sarah Barron kicked-off the week of disruptions after she also suspended herself over the rail line at Sandgate. She was one of three people arrested and charged.

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