“Discriminatory” bank shuts Palestine Society’s account

first_imgCo-op bank closes Palestine Society’s bank account 19 clubs and societies co-release press statement condemning the “discriminatory action”, including five OUSU liberation campaigns and Wadham SU PSC has filed legal action under sections 13 and 29 of the Equality Act 2010 and has similarly called for members and supporters to move their funds away from Co-operative Bank accounts.They have said, “It appears that the decision was taken because of PSC’s support for Palestine. A decision based on active support of Palestinian causes – or on the nationality or religion of the Palestinian people – would be discriminatory. It is in the wider public interest to ensure that banks are held to account for their decision making processes; a bank cannot be above the law by virtue of its status.”A group of more than 15 Oxford student clubs and societies have condemned the bank’s actions. These include Rhodes Must Fall Oxford, the Oxford University Labour Club, the OUSU Women’s Campaign, the Oxford Students’ Jews for Justice for Palestinians and the Wadham College Student Union.A statement co-released by the groups reads, “We, the undersigned student clubs and societies at the University of Oxford, condemn in the strongest possible terms the discriminatory action taken by the Co-operative Bank against the Oxford Students’ Palestine Society, in closing their account. The bank has offered no transparent explanation, asserting that the Palestine Society, a university registered society, is ‘high risk’ and ‘no longer fit[s]’ within the Co-op’s ‘risk appetite’.“We view this as part of a process undertaken by the Co-operative Bank in the context of racist and discriminatory ‘counter-extremism’ measures, which has involved closing down the accounts of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and over 20 Palestine Solidarity Campaign branches and Palestinian human rights groups across the UK.” Oxford University’s Students’ Palestine Society (Pal Soc) has revealed that its bank account had been closed by the Co-operative Bank.A statement released today claimed that there was “no reasonable justification for this action,” and that the bank’s stated reason for the account closure was that the society is “high risk” and “no longer fits within [the bank’s] risk appetite.”A spokesperson for Pal Soc wrote, “The closure of Pal Soc’s account is part of a recent broader attack on solidarity organisations advancing Palestinian human rights across the UK. The Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC), together with a further 20 grassroots organisations working for Palestine have also had their accounts closed by the Co-operative Bank. Pal Soc has therefore resolved to join the legal case launched by PSC against the Co-operative Bank on the grounds of discrimination. PSC and its legal team believe the Bank’s actions are discriminatory and contravene the Equality Act 2010.”They further called for “all Oxford University student societies, JCRs, MCRs, individual faculty, staff, and students, as well as all College and University bodies to show their solidarity by withdrawing their bank accounts from Co-op, and until such time as the bank accounts of all those grassroots and civic rights associations working for Palestine in the UK are reopened.”Student societies including @OxUniLabour and @RMF_Oxford in solidarity w PalSoc against @CoopBankUK account closure: https://t.co/gentCCYCyp— Oxford PalSoc (@PalSocOxford) December 11, 2015center_img Society to join Palestine Solidarity Campaign in legal action against the bank A group of students are preparing an SU motion to close our @CoopBankUK charities account after they shut down Oxford PalSoc’s #NotMyCoOp— Wadham SU (@WadhamSU) December 11, 2015But a representative for The Co-operative Bank explained that the closure was entirely a reflection of its legal obligations.She told Cherwell, “I would like to reassure you that this is not a reflection on the work carried out by many of our customers throughout the world, or a statement about the causes they support. We remain a committed supporter of many charities which can meet the industry level requirements.“In common with all banks, we have to perform due diligence on our customers, their accounts and the payments they make to ensure the Bank complies with anti-money laundering obligations and to manage the Bank’s risk. This is part of our normal banking processes and is an area where the Bank has made some changes recently to bring it into line with the industry generally. You may have seen in the press recently that there can be significant financial penalties when banks do not have adequate controls in place so these changes are timely and appropriate.“For customers who operate in, or send money to, high risk locations throughout the world, advanced due diligence checks are required by all banks to ensure the funds do not inadvertently fund alleged or proscribed activities. Depending on the particular circumstances it may not be possible for us to complete these checks to our satisfaction and the decision to close a number of accounts (including the PSC and some of its affiliates) is an inevitable result of this process. Unfortunately, after quite extensive research, the charities involved did not meet our requirements or, in our view, allow us to fulfil our obligations.“I would emphasise this is not a political or discriminatory decision but one based on our obligations. Clearly we have to meet our legal and regulatory requirements and we believe in the round our decision is consistent with our ethical policy. Our position has been discussed with and has the support of the Values and Ethics Committee which noted this is primarily a matter of adhering to banking regulations. I would also like to emphasise that these decisions have been made by the Bank’s management and have not been influenced by external agencies or our shareholders.“This does not mean that we cannot or will not facilitate humanitarian, educational, medical and human rights donations to the Gaza region. Many well known, national, registered charities do excellent work in these fields in Gaza and elsewhere and we make regular donations to some of these organisations through our current account and credit cards.”last_img read more

State Regents Exams Canceled Due To COVID-19 Outbreak

first_imgShare:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) Alberto G. / CC BY 2.0 ALBNAY – New York State’s Regents exams that were slated for June have now been canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak.The state’s Board of Regents Chancellor Betty Rosa announced the news Monday in a statement.“The COVID-19 pandemic has put a tremendous burden on many New Yorkers and our schools and children are no exception,” Board of Regents Chancellor Betty A. Rosa said. “The regulations passed by the Board today will allow schools, students and professionals much-needed flexibility while they adapt to this rapidly evolving situation.”A series of amendments address numerous issues resulting from the interruptions districts, institutions of higher education and licensed professionals are experiencing caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, officals said. We have listed the changes below: ProfessionsAmendments to the Commissioner’s regulations will allow the Department to excuse the continuous experience requirements for speech language pathology, audiology, and occupational therapy where such continuous experience cannot be completed due to the State of Emergency declared by the Governor.Further, the Department will accept passing examination scores from Public Accounting applicants that are outside the required 18-month examination window where such examinations could not be completed within 18 months due to the State of Emergency declared by the Governor.Additionally, the Department will be authorized to modify professional educational program requirements for licensure, to the extent authorized by law, and grant an exemption for in person supervision experience requirements for licensed clinical social work, licensed master social work, mental health counseling, marriage and family counseling, creative arts therapy, and psychoanalysis where such requirements and/or in person supervision cannot be completed due to the State of Emergency declared by the Governor.School and District AccountabilityThe federal government has provided New York State with a one-year waiver from provisions of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) pertaining to State assessments and school and district accountability determinations due to the unique circumstances that have arisen as a result of the COVOID-19 crisis.  Therefore, the Department amends the Commissioner’s regulations to specify that the Commissioner will not conduct a review of school and district performance using 2019-20 school year data. The accountability status of public schools and districts for the 2020-21 school year will remain the same as for the 2019-20 school year; and 2018-19 school year results shall be used in any instance where 2019-20 school year results would have been used as part of the process of making 2021-22 school year accountability determinations.Additionally, the proposed amendment provides that the Commissioner may, upon a finding of good cause, modify timelines for the 2019-20 through 2021-22 school years [any required timelines] pertaining to notifications, plans, reports, or implementation of activities required of schools and districts because of their accountability status during those school years.Special EducationThe Commissioner’s regulations are amended to ensure that State approved private schools, State operated schools, Special Act School Districts, State supported schools and preschools will not be penalized because they are unable to provide instruction or operate for 180 days where such schools are closed pursuant to an Executive Order of the Governor.  The amendments also permit impartial hearing officers to conduct special education due process hearings by video conference during the COVID-19 crisis.  Additionally, the amendments allow hearing officers to extend cases up to 60 days rather than 30 days while schools are closed pursuant to the terms of the Executive Order(s) issued by the Governor.In regard to requirements that preschool providers make-up missed services within 30 days of the missed session, the amendment allows providers to not include days that the school is closed pursuant to the terms of the Executive Order(s) issued by the Governor. Additionally, the regulations extend the time period to arrange for special education programs and services to be provided where a school is closed pursuant to an Executive Order issued by the Governor.Bilingual EducationThe Commissioner’s regulations are amended to not include any day(s) where a school is closed pursuant to an Executive Order of the Governor to count toward the following timelines:English language learner identification process timeline;parental notification and information timeline; andthe English as a New Language/Bilingual Education placement timeline.The amendments will also provide an exemption to students from the unit of study requirements where a student is unable to meet such requirements due to schools being closed pursuant to an Executive Order and otherwise achieves the learning outcomes.Additionally, the amendments provide that for the 2019-2020 school year, there will be no English language learner annual assessment due to such assessment being suspended as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.Curriculum and InstructionThe Department amends the Commissioner’s regulations to provide an exemption to students from the unit of study requirements where a student is unable to meet such requirements due to schools being closed pursuant to an Executive Order of the Governor and where such student otherwise achieves the learning outcomes of such portion of unity of study completed.Charter SchoolsThis amendment will permit the Commissioner to excuse delays of up to 30 days in required reporting and payment by charter schools to public schools for the length of time a school closure is ordered by an Executive Order of the Governor.The Commissioner’s regulations were further amended to require charter schools to provide notice on their website of the date, time and place of lotteries for the random selection process for charter school student applicants if such lottery is provided during a school closure ordered pursuant to an Executive Order of the Governor. Additionally, amendments to the regulations will permit these lotteries to be held remotely, provided that the public has the opportunity to view or listen and such lottery is recorded and later transcribed.Home InstructionThe Department will amend the Commissioner’s regulations to provide that an alternative form of evaluation for students receiving home instruction, in lieu of an annual assessment, will be permitted for all grades in the 2019-20 school year due to the State of Emergency declared by the Governor.Higher EducationThe Department amends the Commissioner’s regulations to:permit the Dignity for All Students Act (DASA) training to be conducted entirely online during the time period of the State of emergency declared by the Governor pursuant to an Executive Order for the COVID-19 crisis;create an edTPA safety net for candidates in registered educator preparation programs whose student teaching or similar clinical experience in spring 2020 was impacted by COVID-19;extend the Statement of Continued Eligibility (SOCE) application deadline for special education teachers who teach a special class in grades 7-12 from June 30, 2020 to June 30, 2021; andextend the time period by which full-time, acceptable teaching experience must be completed for the SOCE or limited extension from June 30, 2020 to June 30, 2021.State AidThe amendments permit public school districts, public schools and charter schools to operate for less than 180 days without a reduction in State Aid if a school  is closed pursuant to the terms of Executive Order(s) of the Governor. This amendment also permits missed instructional hours for any day that a school is closed pursuant to the terms of an Executive Order of the Governor to count toward the minimum annual instructional hour requirements.Early LearningThe regulations are amended to permit prekindergarten programs to operate for less than the 180-day requirement for a full-year program and the 90-day requirement for districts who started a half-year program using their Expanded Prekindergarten Grant, where such programs were scheduled to operate, but the school where the program operates is closed pursuant to the terms of an Executive Order of the Governor.  Additionally, regulations will permit Department staff who are unable to conduct their annual visit of nonpublic nursery schools due to the COVID-19 pandemic to do so as soon as practicable when they reopen.310 Appeals to the CommissionerThis amendment will permit service of pleadings and supporting papers for appeals to the Commissioner by alternative means during the time period of any movement restrictions or school closures directed by the Governor.Part 83 and Part 87 AppealsRegulations are amended to excuse the filing timeframes where required submissions are late due to a State of emergency declared by the Governor relating to:appeals to the Commissioner of a hearing officer’s determination of good moral character;due process procedures for prospective employees’ clearance for employment; andappeals of the Department’s determination to deny prospective school.Additionally, the definition of “prospective school employee” is amended to include any individual who will reasonably be expected to provide services which involve online communication or interaction directly to students under the age of 21 during the period of a school closure ordered pursuant to an Executive Order of the Governor.Office of State ReviewThe amendment to Commissioner’s regulation allows the State Review Officer to authorize certain filings through electronic means during the State of emergency declared by the Governor.last_img read more

La Liga president critical of decision to end Ligue 1 season

first_img“In Spain, football is an important economic driver that we need to reactivate like many others. We continue to focus on this reactivation, in a responsible manner and adhering to health recommendations, as soon as possible.”As things stand, Barcelona sits atop La Liga, maintaining a two-point lead over rival Real Madrid through 27 matches.Sevilla and Real Sociedad currently sit in the other two Champions League spots, with Getafe, Atletico Madrid and Valencia all within five points of third place. La Liga president Javier Tebas on Tuesday criticized France’s decision to end the Ligue 1 season, comparing matches behind closed doors to working on an assembly line or fishing boat as Spanish football moves closer to a return.Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced Tuesday that professional athletes, including footballers, may return to a limited form of training as soon as May 4. The return to training is the first of what Sanchez sees as four phases, with the second being a step up in training at performances centers.At the third step, outdoor activities with fewer than 400 attendees can begin before the final phase: a return to “the new standard.”With Sanchez’s statement, the Spanish government made it clear that it believes the La Liga season can still be finished, despite the recent cancellations of France’s Ligue 1 and the Netherlands’ Eredivisie.Tebas was critical of France’s decision to end its season altogether because of the coronavirus pandemic, saying that giving up on the season was not a wise economic or social decision.He says he wants the Primera Division to get back to play while taking all the precautions necessary to make sure players and staff are safe.”I do not understand why there would more danger in playing football behind closed doors, with all precautionary measures, than working on an assembly line, being on a fishing boat on the high seas, etc.,” Tebas said in a statement.”If important economic sectors cannot restart, in a safe and controlled manner, they could end up disappearing. That could happen to professional football.”In other countries, teams are already training, that’s the example to follow.last_img read more

JIMMY DUFFY’S ANNAGRY NOTES: DEATH OF FRANCES O’DONNELL AT THE AGE OF 102

first_imgJimmy Duffy’s Annagry Community Notes November 12CRAFT FAIRThe Annual Craft Fair held in Caisleain Óir Annagry will take place on Friday December 5th. To book a table contact Seamus at 074 9548723 or Caisleain Óir Hotel at 074 9548113. THE LATE FRANCES O’DONNELLThe death has taken place in England of Frances O’Donnell nee Rodgers formerly of Kerrytown. Aged 102 years, she was a daughter of late Hughie Rodgers (Den) and Annie McBride (Thimlín). Frances was predeceased by her husband the late Patrick O’Donnell (Eoin Phádraig) and her brothers the late Dan and Tim Rodgers Kerrytown. The sympathy of the community is extended to her family, nephews, nieces, relations and friends.ACTIVITIESThe autumn season of activities and classes is presently underway at Annagry Community Hall. On Mondays Pilates, Set Dancing and Boxing, Tuesdays Dressmaking and Fly Tying, Wednesdays Guitar, Social Media, Crochet and Boxing, Fridays Foróige and Boxing, Saturdays Hip Hop. For further information contact [email protected] or 074 62591. TABLE QUIZThere will be a table quiz in Casadh an tSugain Loughanure on Friday night November 14th starting at 9.30pm. The proceeds are in aid of Loughanure Christmas lights. Please come out and supportSYMPATHYSympathy of the community is extended to her relatives and friends of the late Margaret Roarty, St Peter’s Terrace Dungloe and formely of Cúl a’ Cnoic Annagry and Diane Byrne Bunaman (see obituary next week) who died recently.LOTTO There was no winner of the €2420 jackpot in the Naomh Muire Club Lotto for November 5th. The numbers drawn were 2-4-13-23. Brian O’Donnell Belcruit West, Kevin White Loughanure, Neil Doherty Loughanure, Ryan Gallagher Mullaghduff and Francis Sharkey Ranamona matched 3 numbers. The jackpot on October 12th is €2480 If you’re not in, you can’t win!100+ DRAWThe following people who won in the 100+ October Draw co-ordinated by Naomh Muire CLG were €500 Neil Boyle (Peter) Annagry. €200 Nora Greene Rann na Feirste. €100 Phil Ward Belcruit, Grace Boyle Mullaghderg, Brian Gillespie Mullaghduff. €50 Mary Ward (H) Belcruit, Nigel McBride Meendernasloe, Mark Sharkey Mullaghderg, Billy Mooney The Cope Annagry, John Gallagher Toin a’ Bhaile, Hughie Hanlon Calhame, Margaret Trimble Loughanure and Ronan Conlon Mullaghduff. The next draw will take place on November 26th. There is a limited number of spaces available, so if you wish to join draw contact Naomh Muire Club committee members.COMHGHAIRDEAS Congratulations to the local participants in this year’s Oireachtas na Samhna held in Killarney recently. Brian Ó Domhnaill (Danny Minnie) as Anagaire was second in Corn Uí Riada singing competition. Bríd Anna Ní Baoill as Rann na Feirste won first prize in the Dreas Cainte competition. Clann Mac Suibhne from Loughanoran Annagry was most successful in winning prizes in Storytelling, Recitation and Agallamh Beirte.TABLE QUIZA Table Quiz in aid of Make A Wish Ireland will be held in Caisleáin Óir Annagry on Wednesday November 12th at 10pm. Teams of four €20 per table. Thank you for your continued support.SCÓR NA NÓGComhghairdeas le Róise Nic Ruairí o Chlub Óige Rann na Feirste agus Fo Chumann CLG Naomh Muire atá fríd go dtí Comortas Conndae Scór na nÓg i mBaile Dhún na nGall ar an 23ú Samhan. Bhí Róise i gcomortas aisteoracht. Míle bhuíochas do na paistí eile agus Bríd Anna, as an taispéantas fiuntach a thug said i nGleann Fhinne oiche Shatharn.JIMMY DUFFY’S ANNAGRY NOTES: DEATH OF FRANCES O’DONNELL AT THE AGE OF 102 was last modified: November 11th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Annagry newsCommunity newslast_img read more