PHOTOS: Minister Montague Cuts Ribbons to Open Pilot Lounge

first_imgMinister of Transport and Mining, Hon. Robert Montague (seated), enjoys the comfort of the newly opened pilot lounge at the Tinson Pen Aerodrome in St. Andrew. The Minister officially opened the lounge during a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday (May 16). Also pictured (from left) are Director, Navair Jamaica Ltd, Dr. Sylvia Mitchell; Managing Director, Navair Jamaica Ltd, Captain Alson Mitchell; and Trainee Pilot, Caribbean Aviation Training Centre, Richard Gordon. Mr. Montague has mandated that all Jamaican aerodromes be fitted with a pilot lounge as part of continued efforts to transform Jamaica’s transportation sector into a world-class industry. This is the first of the new lounges to be officially opened by the Minister.last_img

Stars Issue a Call to Amnesty International in Open Letter

first_imgMore than 400 national and international women’s rights groups, including the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW), human rights advocates, medical doctors, actors and directors, fashion designers, faith-based organizations and concerned individuals from over 30 countries signed an open letter to Amnesty International expressing their dismay at its policy proposal calling for the decriminalization of the sex industry.If passed at Amnesty’s International Council Meeting in Dublin from Aug. 7–11, this policy would in effect advocate the legalization of pimping, brothel owning and sex buying — the pillars of a $99 billion global sex industry.Within 24 hours of learning about Amnesty’s proposed policy, scores of Hollywood stars and prominent individuals began to join an international grassroots campaign urging Amnesty to stand with those exploited in the sex trade, who are mostly women, rather than with their exploiters. Among the signatories are Oscar-winning actress, Meryl Streep, chef and activist, Alice Waters, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Anna Quindlen, author, Hannah Pakula, poet and human rights activist, Rose Styron and 2008 Amnesty International Human Rights Award winner, Lydia Cacho. Others include: Angela Bassett, Emily Blunt, Jonathan Demme, Grace Hightower De Niro, Lena Dunham, Anne Hathaway, Sarah Jones, Kevin Kline, Lisa Kudrow, Kyra Sedgwick, Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, Eve Ensler, Marcia Gay Harden, Carey Mulligan, Ali Wentworth and many more.The response to the open letter issued by CATW was so exceedingly positive that it is now a campaign on Change.org and is open for more signatures.As the letter states, campaigners firmly agree with Amnesty that those who are prostituted must not be criminalized or brutalized by law enforcement and governments. However, full decriminalization of the sex trade renders pimps “businesspeople” who sell vulnerable individuals, overwhelmingly with histories of poverty, discrimination, homelessness and sexual abuse, to buyers of sex with impunity.“I hope and believe that Amnesty will understand the parallels with other forms of economically compelled body invasion — for instance, the sale of organs,” added Gloria Steinem. “The millions who are prostituted experience trauma and shortened lives. Legalization keeps pimps, brothel keepers, and sex-slavers in freedom and riches. Criminalization puts the prostituted in prison. What works is the ‘third way,’ the Nordic model, which offers services and alternatives to prostituted people, and fines buyers and educates them to the realities of the global sex trade.”Extensive evidence shows the catastrophic effects of legalizing or decriminalizing pimping and brothels, demonstrated in Germany and the Netherlands, for example. With impunity for the commercial sexual exploitation of marginalized populations comes an increase in sex trafficking to satisfy the demand for prostitution. Studies and survivors’ testimonies demonstrate that the sex industry is predicated on dehumanization, degradation and gender violence that can cause life-long physical and psychological harm.“A vote calling for legalizing pimping would in effect support gender apartheid, in which some women in society can demand protection from rape, discrimination and sexual harassment, while others, the most vulnerable among us, are instead set aside for consumption by men and for the profit of their pimps,” said Taina Bien-Aimé, CATW’s executive director. “This is far from what Eleanor Roosevelt envisioned for the world when she penned the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.”Source:CATWInternational.orglast_img read more

RCMP gathering DNA from men and boys in Manitoba First Nation as

first_img(The remains of Teresa Robinson, 11, were found last May. The RCMP now asking for DNA samples from boys and men in Garden Hill First Nation. APTN/file)Cara McKenna APTN National NewsRCMP investigators have taken the unusual step of requesting DNA samples from boys and men from a northern Manitoba First Nation community where the remains of an 11-year-old girl were found during a search last May, according to the band’s chief.Garden Hill First Nation Chief Arnold Flett said several RCMP officers have been knocking on doors in the community since Monday asking men aged 15 to 50 years old to allow a sample of their DNA to be taken at a local office used by the Mounties.He said the RCMP officers have told community members the request is part of the investigation into the death of Teresa Robinson, 11, whose partial remains were discovered during a search last May.Robinson’s death remains unsolved and police are treating the case as a homicide.Flett said this is one of the rare times RCMP investigators have returned to the community to gather evidence as part of the investigation into Robinson’s death over the past nine months. He said he does not know the status of the investigation.Flett said the community generally agrees with the DNA request.“We informed the community (of the DNA testing) and there’s no opposition to it,” Flett said. “It’s not forced, it’s being requested.”Flett said he hopes this will lead to a resolution for the community of about 3,000 people which continues to feel the impact of Robinson’s violent death.“We’d like to see this be solved,” said Flett. “The people of Garden Hill would like to see that happen.”He said the investigators are expected to remain in Garden Hill until Thursday gathering DNA samples.Manitoba RCMP confirmed late Wednesday that the officers were gathering DNA as part of the investigation into Robinson’s death.“The investigation into the murder of Teresa Robinson has remained an active case since our officers were first contacted and deployed to Garden Hill First Nation in the spring of 2015,” said Sgt. Bert Paquet, in an emailed statement. “While we are not in a position to discuss all the specifics of this ongoing case, we can confirm that our investigators have collected DNA samples from males of Garden Hill First Nation as one of several techniques used by officers assigned to the case.”cmckenna@aptn.ca@cara102last_img read more