…implementation to enable better services for consumersThe Guyana National Bureau of Standards (GNBS), the Tourism and Hospitality Association of Guyana (THAG), and the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) have inked a new agreement which will improve the quality of services that are offered to customers at restaurants.These entities have stated that Tourism Month 2018 will play a concrete role in the promotion and implementation of the new document, the National Standard for Restaurants: Code of practice for quality and management in the restaurant service.“Through the implementation of the Standard, it is anticipated that restaurants and other food establishments would generally improve the quality of service offered toTHAG Director Mitra Ramkumar (second from left) along with representatives of the GNBS and GTAconsumers”, they have said.Additionally, Head of the Marketing and Communication Department of the GNBS, Syeid Ibrahim, highlighted that the GNBS will be embarking on a ‘corporate marketing venture’ with the two partnering organisations to endorse the Standard. According to him, this will be done in a phased manner that would include reviewing the Standard to fill any possible shortfalls and making the Standard available to all sizes and categories of establishment.Technical support to establishments will also be provided, based on stipulated requirements and evaluation. A certification of compliance will most likely be issued.Ibrahim admitted that this initiative will take some time for establishments to get accustomed to the required Standards, but he said it is necessary for economic revolution.President of THAG, Mitra Ramkumar, applauded the GNBS for the new code of practice, and believes that it would yield the level of conformity businesses need in order to offer the best quality of service. Ramkumar also believes that compliant restaurants would benefit significantly when the oil and gas industry develops further.Commenting on behalf of the GTA, Licensing and Training Manager, Davina Layne, specified that having quality tourism offerings is critical for customers to have value for their money.She said quality is key for any visitor to a food establishment, and having a Standard which was specifically developed to enhance the quality of services offered by restaurants would give guidance on how they should consistently deliver in terms of experience and products.“By adapting to best practices and following quality control measures, restaurants will be able to gain customers’ confidence, realise return visits by customers, grow revenues, increase efficiency and productivity, and reduce overhead costs,” she said. The GNBS will be offering the Restaurant Standard for sale at a reduced cost, so as to encourage all categories of restaurants to get on board with the initiative. It is expected that by the end of 2019, a majority of these establishments will be in conformity.
Aurora Goldmines…union says workers want representation…company denies unlawfully hindering unionisationMatters have come to a head at Aurora Goldmines (AGM), owned by Guyana Goldfields, where reports have emerged of some workers going on strike over grievances related to their unionisation and severance payments.According to a source, workers at Aurora Goldmines were even threatened with having their Wi-Fi – vital to ensure they can communicate from their Cuyuni/Mazaruni location to the coast— cut off.When contacted by this newspaper, Guyana Goldfields Human Resource Manager Peter Benny denied that the company turned off the Wi-Fi to isolate workers, claiming that there are times when technical difficulties may cause them to prioritise business links over worker’s personal communication links.The human resource manager also confirmed that while there was a strike, it did not spread through the entire Aurora Goldmines operations but rather, only a part. Asked if the strike had to do with STRACON— which signed an open-pit agreement with Goldfields last year— Benny insisted that the contractor was performing.“The STRACON contractors are performing their duties,” Benny said when contacted on Tuesday morning. “There’s been a crew from the AGM who had a stand down to discuss issues that were affecting them”.According to Benny, workers have been known to call meetings among themselves to discuss grievances. Asked what issues the company has with paying severance, Benny denied that there were any.“We pay severance to all employees who are severed. All employees. There’s never a problem paying severance. Persons laid off are paid severance and redundancy, in keeping with the law,” Benny said.In a similar fashion, Benny denied that the company is deliberately hindering the process for its workers. But he noted that while the National Mining Workers Union (NMWU) is only seeking to represent workers at Buckhall, Benny stressed that the union needs to get the required percentage of support from workers drawn from its entire operation.“You can’t try to recognise a small scope of workers. The law requires that you seek to have the membership, 41 per cent of the bargaining unit. Not a part of the bargaining unit,” Benny continued.Benny was asked why the union’s President, Mining Advocate Sherwyn Downer, was not being allowed to meet workers and seek their support. Benny admitted that while the company was not averse to Downer meeting workers, it has to be off-site. He advised that an off-site meeting with works be sought by Downer.WorkersThis publication spoke to several workers attached to the Aurora site where a picture that differed from the Human Resource Manager was painted. According to one worker who works with the blasting (explosives) crew, workers have several grievances against the company.“We have a situation where there is a merger. They told us in April that we’re merging. April gone, May gone, they put a deadline to July 1 that the merger would happen and we would be paid off severance. Now when the 1st reach, we call the manager and the manager said he wasn’t aware of that and we have to go back to work,” the worker said.“We said we’re not going back to work, this has to be solved. We told them the situation is very tense. This is very disrespectful to us. The manager is saying he doesn’t know this, he doesn’t know that… now, there are about 300 workers on the ground stand down,” the employee, who spoke under the condition of anonymity, said. He added that the mills, part of the AGM operation, also stood down with them.UnionMeanwhile, President of the NWMU, Sherwyn Downer, confirmed that he is in receipt of the workers’ complaints and has been apprised of the situation at the mining camp. According to Downer, he stands ready to work to ensure a solution and noted that he will be making contact with the company and the Labour Department to facilitate a trip. Later, he noted that when he contacted the Social Protection Ministry, he was told that workers wanted to meet with the ministry and not the union, at odds with media reports.“NMWU is concerned for the welfare and safety of Guyanese workers at Guyana Goldfield….and urges the Guyana Government to intervene on behalf of Goldfield Inc. employee in the absence of a union and restore or raise the bar of confidence in the Department of Labour and Social Protection Ministry,” Downer subsequently said in a statement.
0Shares0000Fans wear masks of Brazil’s Neymar, who is home with his famous right foot recovering from surgery as the rest of the Brazil squad prepare to face hosts Russia in their penultimate World Cup warmup © AFP/File / Nelson ALMEIDAMOSCOW, Russian Federation, Mar 22 – Training between mounds of snow without Neymar, Brazil may be forgiven for feeling out of their element as they prepare to face hosts Russia in their penultimate World Cup warmup.The most expensive football player on the planet is back home, celebrating his sister’s birthday with his famous right foot recovering from surgery in a protective boot. But things are deadly serious in Moscow, where the Selecao play on Friday at the Luzhniki Stadium in which they will hope to lift a record sixth World Cup trophy on July 15.Coach Tite will try to make sure his superstars have learned from the unmitigated disaster of their 7-1 drubbing by Germany, whom Brazil play on Tuesday, on home soil back in 2014.That fateful World Cup semi-final four years ago was played without the injured Neymar or suspended centre-back Thiago Silva.Now, as then, Brazil are looking vulnerable in defence and missing their 26-year-old hero.Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar “is a different player. He is one of the top three in the world,” said Tite.“But a strong team should not depend on specific names.”– Fighting for a spot –Without Neymar, Tite is entrusting the left wing to Juventus’s in-form Douglas Costa.With Neymar out, Brazil coach Tite is entrusting the left wing to Juventus’s in-form Douglas Costa © AFP/File / MIGUEL MEDINAThe 27-year-old is in the prime of his career after spending much of it tucked away in Ukraine playing for Shakhtar Donetsk.Costa has only found the net three times in 22 appearances in a yellow jersey but this is his time to shine, and he does not seem phased by the occasion.“Replacing Neymar is an enormous challenge, but we have a lot of class acts on the team who have big potential,” said Costa.“Neymar’s absence gives the other players a chance to show themselves, to show their best side.”Costa will be paired up front with Chelsea’s graceful winger Willian and Gabriel Jesus, who has scored 11 times for Manchester City this season.It is a dizzying array of stars and Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro may have put it most succinctly when contemplating the effect of such strong internal competition.“I do not want to lose my place to anyone,” said Casemiro.“I want to play for my country, play in all the matches, and I am ready to show my best at training to do it.”If Tite is spending any sleepless nights, it might not be because of Neymar’s absence but due to his defence.Despite boasting a trio of Neymar’s PSG teammates: Silva, Marquinhos and Dani Alves, Brazil have a weakness at left-back should something happen to Real Madrid’s Marcelo.His regular replacement Filipe Luis suffered a broken leg playing for Atletico Madrid last week and is expected to be out for two months.Despite boasting a trio of Neymar’s PSG teammates: Silva, Marquinhos and Dani Alves, Brazil have a weakness at left-back should something happen to Real Madrid’s Marcelo (L) © AFP/File / JAVIER SORIANOThird choice Alex Sandro of Italian champions Juventus was injured during the first training session in Moscow.As a result, Tite had to call up the uncapped 28-year-old Ismaily — named after an obscure 1956 British film called “Smiley”.He is a complete unknown in his homeland and his selection was perhaps more due to his geographic proximity — he plays for Shakhtar Donetsk in Ukraine — than anything else.Rio’s Globo Esporte newspaper pointed out incredulously that Ismaily was the 10th left-back called up by Tite since he took over in 2014.Despite the problems, and temperatures due to drop to -9 Celsius (16 Fahrenheit) in Moscow, Brazil are hoping to leave a legacy.“We will be playing in the stadium that will host the final, and we want to leave a wish,” said Casemiro.“We want to come back here in the summer and try to win the title.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
1 Interim Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink is a popular figure at Stamford Bridge Should Roman Abramovich look a little closer to home to find his next permanent Chelsea manager?Since replacing Jose Mourinho at the end of last year, Guus Hiddink, employed for a second time on an interim basis until the end of the season, has reinvigorated what was a miserable dressing room and restored faith among the Stamford Bridge faithful.In his two spells with Chelsea, he has a success rate of 64 per cent out of 22 Premier League matches – winning 14, drawing seven and losing only once.And the club’s latest victory, a 5-1 demolition of an inexperienced Manchester City side in the fifth round of the FA Cup, has even lifted many a Blues supporter into believing that silverware could still be delivered, despite a seemingly woeful campaign.While Diego Simeone, Massimiliano Allegri and Antonio Conte have persistently been linked with the permanent position in the summer, is Hiddink therefore the man most deserving of the job?Read what a section of Chelsea supporters have to say on the subject and cast your vote on whether the Dutchman would be the right man to lead the defending English champions forward below.
As part of ‘Culture Night’ 2016, the County Donegal Heritage Office, Cultural Services Division, Donegal County Council will be hosting a built heritage walk in Letterkenny with Colm Murray, Architecture Officer with The Heritage Council on Friday, September 16 starting at Dunnes Stores Car Park, Lower Main Street at 6:30pm. This short walking tour entitled ‘A Walk through Lawrence’s Letterkenny’ will highlight 100 years of the built heritage and changing streetscapes of the town.Drawing upon historical photographs from the Lawrence Collection (1880-1914) taken by photographer Robert French, Colm will identify clues to the development of the built environment of Letterkenny and highlight the importance of some of its historic buildings and the contributions they make to our streetscapes and built heritage.The walk will start at Dunnes Stores Car Park, Lower Main Street, Letterkenny, proceed along the Main Street and finish at the County Museum at 7:30 p.m. leaving participants free to enjoy the numerous other events taking place in Letterkenny for ‘Culture Night’ including historical re-enactments, heritage open house, exhibitions, live music, film screenings, literary events, a heritage debate, intercultural celebration, a hands-on art room, workshops, music, dance and comedy. For more information, visit the Donegal County Council website at www.donegalcoco.ie Fancy taking a walk through Lawrence’s Letterkenny? was last modified: September 9th, 2016 by StephenShare 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:Culture NightdonegalletterkennyWALK
DONEGAL SFC: Kilcar got their championship campaign off to a great start when they powered past Gary Boyle’s Naomh Muire side in Towney.Patrick McBrearty showed his class throughout and his first-half goal sent them on their way to a comfortable win.In truth the damage was inflicted in the opening period and this game was practically over as a contest by half-time.Darragh O’Donnell got a second goal after the interval and Eoin McHugh and Mark Sweeney along with Stephen and Patrick McBrearty were very impressive for the hosts. Naomh Muire only registered a solitary point in the first-half, but improved greatly in the second-half.Naomh Muire kicked seven points after the break and Gary Boyle’s side are a talented young side who will fancy their chances of advancing into the quarter-finals of the Donegal SFC.With home matches against other group rivals Termon and Killybegs they’ll be confident of making the last eight despite the heavy defeat to Kilcar. DONEGAL SFC: KILCAR POWER PAST CHALLENGE OF NAOMH MUIRE was last modified: May 24th, 2015 by Mark ForkerShare 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:GAAkilcarnewsSport
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest This time of year, to cope with the climatic changes they face, some animals hibernate and some migrate, while others stay put, growing thick coats and consuming extra food. Hibernation is one of the most intriguing methods animals use to survive cold weather. When an animal hibernates, its heart rate, body temperature and other life processes slow down, putting them into a kind of a “deep sleep.”February’s favorite mammals, groundhogs, are popular hibernators, according to Geoff Westerfield, a wildlife biologist with the ODNR Division of Wildlife.“Groundhogs hibernate nearly the entire winter,” Westerfield said. “They won’t reemerge until the first few weeks of February, when some signs of spring begin to show.”During a groundhog’s hibernation — which lasts an average of five months — its body temperature lowers by almost half and its heart slows down from 160 to four beats per minute.When outside temperatures drop dangerously low, skunks, raccoons, chipmunks, and opossums are known to go into a temporary hibernation. During those frigid periods, they seek shelter in trees, logs, beneath rocks or underground where they “hole up” and sleep for about five days until the weather breaks.Many migrating birds fly thousands of miles away from Ohio, seeking warmer climates and nutrient-rich habitats to set up shop until warm weather returns up here. Other flying creatures — such as the Indiana and little brown bat — not only migrate, they hibernate too. Roosting inside caves, the bats often ride out winter in southern Ohio or points just south.Frogs, snakes, turtles and most other cold-blooded animals crawl into holes or burrows where they remain inactive all winter. Some snakes gather family-style in the same den and weave together in a “ball” to help insulate themselves.Whether hibernating or staying active, body fat is an important factor in an animal’s winter survival. In the fall, birds and mammals eat extra food so that when supplies are scarce, their bodies can draw energy from fat reserves. Many people think feeding wildlife in the winter is humane, but experts urge well-meaning people to think about the consequences.“Feeding wildlife should be conducted in a manner where wild animals will not make a direct connection between food and humans,” Westerfield said. “Clean, well-maintained bird feeders are a good example of how to enjoy the presence of wildlife, but also how to avoid that direct connection. Once a wild animal loses its natural fear of humans, it can become habituated which is bad for the animal as well as for people.”He also explained that the unnatural gathering of many species to one food source can promote the spread of disease and often the foods provided do not meet the nutritional needs the animals require. For example, feeding bread to ducks and geese is terrible for their digestion and can potentially be fatal for them.Animals will also switch their diets based on the foods available to them. For non-migratory birds such as cardinals and some robins, with their warm season diet of insects, worms and other invertebrates no longer available, they switch to a winter diet of seeds and fruit. Westerfield suggests an alternative to placing food outside for wildlife and instead being mindful of what is planted on a landowner’s property. Incorporating a variety of plants, shrubs, and trees can provide a assortment of food resources for wildlife including species that provide food into the winter months. Crabapples, wild berries, and other plants that produce seeds late in fall are great choices. It is also important to provide wildlife with shelter. Native species of evergreen trees and shrubs give animals protection from wind and rain and these plant species can sustain in Ohio’s climate.If you own a larger parcel of land in the country, brush piles and thick patches of briers provide excellent winter cover for songbirds, cottontail rabbits, and other small animals. Planting food patches of corn, sorghum and millet give numerous wild animals a good source of energy to maintain their body heat in cold weather conditions. I witnessed that firsthand when a farmer friend planted sorghum seeds last spring and the resulting patch of thick cover and food held all manner of wildlife through last month’s spell of snowy weather.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The two largest farming groups in the United States called for swift passage of the farm bill by a congressional conference committee.Faced with the lowest farm income in 12 years, the presidents of the American Farm Bureau Federation and National Farmers Union are asking Senate and House conferees to move quickly. Everything from commodity price supports to childhood nutrition, soil and water conservation, trade promotion and more depend on swift passage.“America’s farmers and ranchers persevere even in the toughest times, but the farm economy has gone from bad to worse,” said Zippy Duvall, AFBF president. “Tariffs and stagnant global demand for commodities have left the agriculture economy in the worst shape we have seen since the farm crisis of the 1980s. Lender surveys and our own experience tell us spring could bring a wave of farm closures unless there’s major improvement in the marketplace.“Farmers and ranchers need the certainty that the farm bill provides to maintain the food security that all Americans want and need. It is more important than ever that Congress get the job done.”AFBF and NFU, together with more than 150 other organizations, also sent a letter to the Senate and House Agriculture committees asking the farm bill conference committee to pass an on-time, five-year farm bill before the September 30 expiration of the 2014 farm bill. A copy of the letter is attached.“Family farmers and ranchers are in need of certainty right now,” said Roger Johnson, NFU President. “Low farm prices due to international trade disruptions, commodity market oversupply, and domestic policy uncertainty are putting significant financial strain on farmers. If Congress is to provide real relief and certainty to those who feed, clothe and fuel our nation, as well as continue the important environmental sustainability work and diverse market promotion of past farm bills, they need to pass a strong farm bill before Sept. 30.”
Maharashtra is all set to roll out the World Health Organization (WHO)-recommended triple-drug therapy for lymphatic filariasis to speed up elimination of the disease. A pilot project was rolled out in Nagpur on Sunday. While Nagpur is one of the six high-prevalence areas, the therapy may be rolled out in other areas in future.Lymphatic filariasis, commonly known as elephantiasis, is a neglected tropical disease. According to the WHO, infection occurs when filarial parasites are transmitted to humans through mosquitoes. The infection is usually acquired in childhood, causing hidden damage to the lymphatic system.Dr. Mahendra Jagtap, the State’s entomologist, said the prevalence is down to six districts, Chandrapur, Gadchiroli, Nagpur, Bhandara, and Thane, from 17 a few years earlier. “We inaugurated the initiative on Friday. The three-drug combination will make a lot of difference,” said Dr. Jagtap. Marathi actor Swapnil Joshi will be the brand ambassador for the elimination of lymphatic filariasis.The State currently has a two-drug regimen consisting of diethylcarbamazine citrate and albendazole. The drugs are distributed in endemic areas through a Mass Drug Administration (MDA) exercise,which is carried out once a year. In the triple-drug regimen, one more drug called ivermectin will be added.During the MDA in Nagpur on Sunday, people were administered the three-drug combination while other areas got the two drugs. “We managed to cover nearly 85% population in the endemic areas. If people have these drugs, the disease can be prevented,” said Dr. Japtap. However, he said, it is a challenge to convince people to take them because very few understand the concept of prevention. Everyone in the community except for pregnant women, children below one year and chronically ill patients were given the drugs.Experts say the MDAs are better for prevention as those living in filariasis-endemic areas may be carrying the infection without symptoms. The drugs, which are safe to be taken for a non-infected person as well, kill the microfilariae (minute larvae) and clear intestinal worms if any. “We are trying to create as much awareness as possible,” said Dr. Japtap.
Yesteryear superstar Rajesh Khanna was admitted to the city’s Lilavati hospital on Sunday evening due to weakness, a week after being released from there, sources close to him said.”He is in the hospital,” a hospital source said, without divulging the reason behind the hospitalisation of the 69-year-old actor, fondly called Kaka.However, sources close to the actor said that he was shifted to hospital due to weakness and Khanna’s estranged wife Dimple Kapadia and daughter Rinkie are with him.Earlier on June 20, it was reported that Khanna had stopped taking food. But the next day, he emerged at the balcony of his home Aashirwad in carter road in Bandra and waved to his fans.Soon after that, on June 23, he had to be admitted to hospital due to exhaustion and weakness. He was discharged on July 8.Earlier also in the month of April he was admitted to Lilavati hospital for three-four days after he complained of uneasiness and exhaustion.Khanna had recently appeared in his first TV ad for for Havell’s fan, directed by R Balki.