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Dublin: New Blog For Citizen’s Free Press Ireland.com

11 Oct

FOLLOW THIS LINK FOR FUTURE POSTS:

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Dublin: Dame Street Occupied By Protesters In Tents: UPDATED

10 Oct

A group of people are continuing to protest outside the Central Bank plaza in Dublin city centre.

The protests are under the banner of ‘Occupy Dame Street’, which saw demonstrators set up camp outside the building on Saturday afternoon.

The group has said its mission is to end corporate corruption and keep the IMF and ECB out of Irish affairs.

The group is also demanding the return to the Irish people of oil and gas reserves off the Irish coast.

It is acting in solidarity with movements including ‘Occupy Wall Street’ in the US and similarly aims to be a non-violent, leaderless resistance movement with no political affiliations.

Keywords:  protest, dublin, dame street

NEWS UPDATE:

A group of people are continuing to protest outside the Central Bank plaza in Dublin city centre.

The protests are under the banner of “Occupy Dame Street”, which saw demonstrators set up camp outside the building on Saturday afternoon.

The group has said its mission is to end corporate corruption and keep the International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank out of Irish affairs.

The group is also demanding the return to the Irish people of oil and gas reserves off the Irish coast.

It is acting in solidarity with movements, including “Occupy Wall Street” in the US, and similarly aims to be a non-violent, leaderless resistance movement with no political affiliations.

The protests have led to heated debate in the US, with much of the criticism coming from Republican politicians.

“It’s anti-American,” Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain said on CBS’ Face the Nation yesterday.

“Even though we have our challenges, I believe that the protests are more anti-capitalism and anti-free market than anything else.”

His comments were echoed by fellow Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich, who said “I think the sad thing is this a natural product of (President Barack) Obama’s class warfare”.

But Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic leader in the House of Representatives, told ABC’s This Week “I support the message to the establishment, whether it’s Wall Street or the political establishment and the rest, that change has to happen.

“When we said everyone should pay their fair share, the other side (Republicans) said that’s class warfare … No, it’s not. It’s the most endearing American value, fairness.”

London: Beat The Burglars and Say Safe At Home:

10 Oct

Barely a day goes past without another news headline proclaiming someone viciously attacked, robbed or worse in their own home.

The past year has seen domestic burglaries rise 14 per cent, while recent figures for England and Wales revealed a householder is attacked by a violent burglar every 30 minutes.

But the crime statistics needn’t make you feel like a victim-in-waiting in your own front room. 

 There are some easy steps you can take to make your house a safer place to be. 

To mark this year’s National Personal Safety Day (October 10) the Suzy Lamplugh Trust – set up following the disappearance of the 25-year-old estate agent in 1986 – has launched a campaign to get more people taking simple safety precautions.

So what can you do to minimize the risks at home?

Protect against bogus callers

Install a door chain and outside lighting – and never answer the door before you’ve checked through a spy-hole or window if you know the caller. If not, put the chain on before opening the door and ask for ID.

Don’t be rushed into accepting their claims – keep them waiting even if that means calling the company they say they work for to check.  And once you have let the caller in, never leave them alone while you go into a different room. Thieves often work in pairs so don’t open the front door to a stranger without locking your back door first.

Keep doors and windows locked
Invest in good door and window locks. Check all locks before leaving the house and keep front and back doors and accessible windows locked to outsiders even when you are in.
It may sound extreme, but the Lamplugh Trust advises avoiding opening doors and windows wide even in summer. The Trust insists: “It’s safer to open a lot of windows a little way (and locking them to prevent them being opened further) than it is to open one or two windows far enough for someone to climb through.”

Pretend you’re in when you’re not
If you’re out, try to make your house look like someone is in. That means cancelling the milk to avoid bottles piling up, asking a neighbour to collect post and leaving a light on or installing an automatic light on/light off system – and even a system that switches radios on and off. Other tips from the Metropolitan Police include: encourage a neighbour to park on your drive, draw the curtains if you will be out after dark and install a burglar alarm or a dummy alarm box as a deterrent.

Keep hedges trimmed
Along with security lighting it is a good idea to keep hedges and bushes trimmed to allow clear views and avoid having places where someone could hide. But it is also advisable to have a secure boundary around your back garden, which is high or awkward enough to make scaling it difficult.

Get crunchy gravel

Crunchy gravel on driveways and paths will make any approach noisier – a useful warning for householders and a deterrent for intruders.
 
Check in with friends and family
If you live alone, try to ensure someone always knows where you are and that you are OK. Even a quick text to let a friend know you’re home and safe after a night out is enough.

Don’t get comfortable in your own street
Stay alert when approaching your home, until you are safely indoors. Have your keys to hand so you are not fumbling on the doorstep and think of safe places you could go if you felt threatened, whether that be a shop, friend’s house or a pub.

Carry a personal safety alarm
These devices, costing as little as £5, can shock or disorientate an attacker, giving you vital seconds to get away. Pick one with the shrillest, loudest siren possible.

Don’t  shout about it
Avoid broadcasting – whether on sites such as Facebook or when you’re out or at work – that you live alone or will be alone in the house at a certain time. Similarly, don’t boast about your upcoming holidays to anyone you don’t know well.

Keep keys hidden
Never leave a spare key concealed anywhere near the front door – as the Met Police note: “Burglars know all the hiding places.” Also never store keys near the front door to avoid letterbox burglaries, and never label your house keys in case you lose them.

IRELAND: www.garda.ie

Killarney, Co Kerry: Drug Culture Can Be Changed By Tackling Social Issues

8 Oct

THE prohibition system favoured in this country in the fight against drugs has failed miserably and should be abandoned to facilitate a more practical and workable policy, a leading criminologist has insisted.

Dr Paul O’Mahony, associate professor of psychology at Trinity College, Dublin, said the traditional “cops and docs” method, combining the criminal justice system with the health service, is totally inadequate and new legislation is urgently needed if matters are to improve.

He said medics and law enforcers obviously have significant roles to play but to totally rely on them is a farce that provides an excuse for the Government to do nothing.

“We need to tackle the whole issue of social justice, culture and our love of mood-altering substances through education and prevention.

“We have an almost universal and irresistible urge to indulge in mood-altering substances and problems have been created by doctor-caused epidemics through the supply of tranquillisers and drugs such as Prozac,” he remarked.

Speaking at the annual Getting A Grip conference in Killarney — organised by Kerry Life Education and the Southern Regional Drugs Task Force — he said the whole drug culture takes on a glamour that is appealing to rebellious young people.

“They resist attempts at control and need to establish independence and autonomy as they grow. It’s as if drug use proves maturity.

“Prohibition has created a criminal monopoly that enriches those willing to defy the law who are ruthless enough to use violence and intimidation to turn a profit.”

Dr O’Mahony said that while there was a flow of “showcase successes” highlighting major drugs seizures made by gardaí, prohibition has been a massive failure as situations where there is huge profit are being created and spread through the prison system.

“We are spending huge amounts of money on law enforcement that’s simply not working.”

The respected criminologist said triggers for drug abuse include the stresses of attempting to maintain materialistic lifestyles, more competition in education and in the workplace, and the increased pace and intensity of life.

“We had a mad situation where people were buying houses 50 or 60 miles away and commuting for two hours to work while their children were in care for 10 or 12 hours a day.”

He said that another major problem is what he termed “the X-Factor scenario” in which expectations of success are limitless but there was not much to go around.

“All of these interacting changes have impacted dramatically on our way of life and on the quality of life and people have become more susceptible to the allure of drugs,” he said.

He said the way to succeed was through legislation and not medicalisation and with ubiquitous and energetic educational programmes highlighting the destructive use of drugs.

www.drugsfreeworld.org  & www.drugs.ie

London: Police Appeal To Public In Hunt For “Dangerous” Most Wanted Men

5 Oct

Murderers, rapists and robbers are among more than a dozen “dangerous” men wanted abroad and thought to be hiding in the UK.

One suspect is wanted for three murders, while two are brothers who police believe raped a young girl.

Another one of the 14 men being hunted as part of Operation Sunfire is said to have cut the throat of his victim with a beer bottle.

Police Hunt 'Dangerous' Men Hiding In UK

Det Sgt Pete Rance, of Scotland Yard’s extradition squad, said: “We are hoping the public’s vigilance can help us trace these men.

“They are dangerous and not to be approached.

 “If you spot them or believe you know where they are living, working or frequenting, then I urge you to call Crimestoppers so we can find and arrest them.

“The countries where these crimes happened want these men back to face justice for these offences and it is in the interests of London to help find them.”

Among those being sought is 41-year-old Ndrieim Sadushi, who is suspected of committing three murders and an attempted murder in Albania in 1997.

Polish brothers Wojciech and Dariusz Glowacki, aged 29 and 33 respectively, are wanted for the rape of a young girl – and are thought to be living in London.

And Adrian Vasilescu, 31, is wanted in Romania for an attack in which he allegedly cut his victim’s throat using a beer bottle.

Police say he may be living in or around the Manor Park area of the capital.

Details and images of all 14 of those wanted can be found at:

 www.crimestoppers-uk.org

 In Ireland: www.garda.ie

 

Dublin: Homeless People Afflicted By Addiction and Ill Health: Report

3 Oct

Report highlights ill health suffered by homeless people

DEPRESSION, dental decay and the threat to health from alcohol and drug use feature heavily among homeless people, almost half of whom suffer from both physical and mental ill health, according to a report.

To add to their tragedy, members of the homeless community are plagued by a range of conditions, including hepatitis, arthritis, asthma and high blood pressure.

Nor are they faring well mentally: the survey shows out of 600 people surveyed by Simon Communities of Ireland, more than one third suffer from depression, while schizophrenia, panic attacks, bipolar disorder and social anxiety disorders feature in up to 10%.

Among the other alarming findings of the National Health Snapshot study, published today to mark the start of Simon Week, are:

* 50% used alcohol, of whom 44% reported health complications as a result.

* 31% used drugs (more than half intravenously) causing abscesses, hepatitis C and B, vein collapse, overdose and deep vein thrombosis.

* More than three quarters using drugs used one or more types of drugs (polydrug use), with heroin the most popular (58%), followed by cannabis, prescribed methadone, unprescribed benzodiazepines and headshop drugs.

* 12% had a diagnosed intellectual disability, most commonly attention deficit disorder and autism.

* 19% self-harmed, almost one quarter expressed suicidal thoughts and 17% attempted suicide in the previous six months.

Niamh Randall, Simon’s national research and policy manager, said the results showed an ongoing need for targeted interventions for the homeless as well as better access to mainstream services.

“For instance in Cork, we have a multidisciplinary team which can address a multitude of needs at the same time.

“Or in Dublin, we have Safetynet, a primary care network where GPs come to the hostels and provide primary care intervention on site, which, when you are homeless, provides a point of contact for people who might not necessarily show up at a surgery.”

Ms Randall said there had been no decrease in the 5,000 people using Simon’s services in the past couple of years and the challenge was to maintain services in the face of decreased funding from the Department of Health.

The stark findings of today’s report come hot on the heels of two reports published last week which found Dublin Simon recorded a 26% increase on last year in the number of people sleeping rough during the early summer months and Merchants Quay Ireland said it was providing 1,100 extra meals every week for mainly homeless and financially desperate people, up 26% on last year.

* The Simon National Conference, Health and Homelessness — Making the Link, takes place today at the Radisson BLU Hotel, Golden Lane, Dublin.

London: Children With ‘Green Fingers’ Behave Better’: Research

3 Oct

 

Teaching children how to garden helps them to become responsible, realise where food comes from and calms their behaviour, a survey suggests.

A poll by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) reveals that more than eight in 10 (81.6%) parents garden with their children.

But it also raises concerns that today’s parents may be outshone by their youngsters and their own parents, because few of them were taught to garden at school.

Teaching children how to garden helps them to become responsible, a survey suggests

Almost half of the parents questioned (48%) said their child knows more or the same amount about gardening as they do. And four fifths of parents said their own parents know more or the same about gardening as they do.

The RHS warned that a lack of gardening instruction at school had left today’s generation of parents without proper horticultural knowledge.

Less than 1% (0.6%) of parents were taught to garden by a school teacher, the RHS claimed, compared with 55% of grandparents and 40% of children.

Just 26% of parents said they had a school garden when they were a child, while 58.8% said their child now has access to a school garden, with 76.2% revealing their youngster uses the facility.

Sue Biggs, director-general of the RHS, said: “These findings suggest that today’s parents, who attended school during the 1980s and 90s, missed out on a huge opportunity, especially as gardening dropped off the agenda.

“When children learn to garden it is a skill that stays with them for life, something they will use and fall back on as they grow up. This is evident from the grandparents we surveyed, among whom nearly 80% say they like to garden, and more than a third of them grow their own fruit and vegetables.

“From the schools we work with we know they are desperate for more help from local parents and other adults to build and maintain school gardens. But with 65% of parents admitting that their own parents (now grandparents) know more about gardening than they do, and nearly half believing their own children, aged 4-11, have equal or better horticultural knowledge than themselves, it would seem today’s parents are shy of volunteering their time probably due to a lack of knowledge.”