Saturday, June 28, 2008

Cyclist rescued from ravine

Cyclist rescued from ravine

LONDON. June 28, 2008/ Coastguard rescue officers have been working alongside ambulance crew tonight to help a 17 year old cyclist who fell down a ravine in Christchurch.

Portland Coastguard received a request from Dorset ambulance at 10.00 pm this evening (Saturday), requesting help with the cyclist who had a fractured collar bone and was stuck in an inaccessible area. Coastguards in the operations room requested the Southbourne Coastguard rescue team to attend and when they arrived on scene they requested back up from their colleagues from Lymington Coastguard rescue team. The young cyclist could not be evacuated by helicopter due to overhanging trees, but the Coastguard team were able to put him on a stretcher and winch him from his position, then carry him to the waiting ambulance.

Nic Lomsdale, Watch Manager says:

"Although this was an inland task we were pleased to be able to offer the assistance of our Coastguard teams, whose experience with cliff rescues can be invaluable during incidents such as these."

In a separate incident earlier today, the Coastguard helicopter was scrambled to a diver who made a rapid ascent and was reported as floating unconscious by his dive boat. The helicopter airlifted the man to hospital but he was pronounced dead on arrival.

Economic Downturn Takes Toll on Charitable Giving Among Christian Community: Poll Commissioned by Dunham+Company Shows Impact of Rising Prices

Economic Downturn Takes Toll on Charitable Giving Among Christian Community: Poll Commissioned by Dunham+Company Shows Impact of Rising Prices

DALLAS, June 18 /Christian Newswire/ -- Nearly half of the Christian adults in America have reduced their charitable giving because of the economic downturn, according to a recent Wilson Research Strategies survey commissioned by Dunham+Company.

"This study shows that the sharp rise in fuel costs has already begun to impact giving by Christians who are the backbone of philanthropy in America," said Rick Dunham, president and CEO of Dunham+Company, which specializes in fundraising for Christian ministries. "Christian nonprofits need to understand that now, more than ever, it's crucial to be proactive in communicating the importance of their mission and their organizational effectiveness to their donors in order to sustain the same share of donor dollars that are becoming more scarce."

Forty-six percent of the Christian adults surveyed - representing 62.5 million Americans - indicated that they have reduced their giving to charity. People older than 55, the segment of the population most supportive of nonprofit organizations, were most affected (53 percent) by the faltering economy.

However, the study found that those who attend church frequently are less likely to have the economy affect their giving, and those who rarely attend church are more likely to decrease their giving. Those attending non-denominational churches overwhelmingly say the economy has not impacted their giving (62 percent).

The skyrocketing price of gasoline is cited as the primary reason for the decrease in charitable giving by a large number of the respondents (49 percent), while nearly one in four (22 percent) cited the increase in food prices as being the driving force.

The greater the household income, the less impact the sagging economy has on charitable contributions. Fifty-five percent of households with incomes of $40,000-$60,000 say the economy has limited their contributions, but only 40 percent of households of $60,000-$100,000 income concur. And approximately one in three (31 percent) households with incomes more than $100,000 say the economy is affecting their support of charities.

"With nearly one-third of households with incomes over $100,000 indicating that the economy is impacting their charitable giving, organizations relying on major donor revenue need to carefully assess the status of those donors and then stay in close touch with them," Dunham said. "Organizational leadership must be careful to not presume that major pledges will be fulfilled."

According to the poll, just 6 percent of Christian donors referenced the volatility of the stock market as having an impact on their giving.

The study indicates that the areas of the country where charities should be least affected by this decline are the West North Central states (North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Minnesota) and Mountain states (Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico).

The areas of the country that can expect to be most affected include the East Coast states and the East North Central (Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Ohio).

This study was part of Wilson Research Strategies May Christian Omnibus Study of 1,000 Christian adults nationwide. All respondents were contacted via Random Digit Dialing methodology and were screened to ensure that they were Christians. Interviews were conducted via live telephone interviewer May 27-29, 2008. A sample of 1,000 has a margin of error of +/-3.1 percent at the 95 percent confidence level.

For more information on charitable giving during recessionary times, you can visit

Note to Editors: To arrange an interview with Rick Dunham, please contact Steve Yount of A. Larry Ross Communications at 972.267.1111 or

KMA Direct Communications Selected as New Marketing Agency for International Bible Society-Send the Light

KMA Direct Communications Selected as New Marketing Agency for International Bible Society-Send the Light

DALLAS, June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- KMA Direct Communications has been named the marketing and fundraising partner for International Bible Society-Send the Light (IBS-STL), one of the world's most enduring nonprofit organizations, and sponsor of the English-language New International Version® (NIV) Bible, today's most widely read contemporary translation.

IBS-STL has been translating (into languages of more than 1 million speakers) and distributing the Bible globally since 1809. Last year, IBS merged with Send the Light (STL), a 50-year-old distributor of Christian products. The resulting organization, IBS-STL Global, headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., is one of the largest Bible and Christian literature ministries in the world.

"After a thorough review, we chose KMA based on the quality of both their team and their resources to take us where we need to go as a newly merged organization," says Cheryl Gardner, vice president of resource development for IBS-STL. "KMA's experience and reputation for excellence and their proven approach to strengthening donor relationships were also major factors in our decision," she adds.

The mission of IBS-STL Global is to help build a strong global Church by engaging people with the life- transforming message of Jesus Christ through translating, producing, and distributing the Bible and other Christian resources throughout the world.

"We're thrilled to be joining the mission of this remarkable organization," says Tom McCabe, KMA chairman and chief executive. "We look forward to helping them significantly grow their donor base and reach their expanded goals for donor revenues in the next few years."

In addition to the NIV Bible, IBS-STL also holds copyrights to Today's New International Version® (TNIV), as well as 42 international Bible translations.

About KMA
Founded in 1984, KMA Direct Communications, Inc. ( is a direct response fundraising and marketing company, providing knowledge-based, multichannel solutions for faith-based organizations and other nonprofits. KMA has offices in Dallas and London. Some current clients include Moody Bible Institute, Wycliffe Bible Translators, The Heritage Foundation, Trans World Radio, Dallas Theological Seminary, SIM/USA, and Mercy Ships.

Semi-Finalist One Week Away From Stardom

Semi-Finalist One Week Away From Stardom

Six Semi-Finalists Just One Week Away from Stardom in American Idol® Gospel/Christian Style TV Series, Gospel Dream 2008 on the Gospel Music Channel

Semi-Finals Air Sunday Night, June 22 at 9:00 P.M. ET

ATLANTA, June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- Six hopefuls are one step away from potentially being crowned the winner of the popular American Idol®-like talent search television series Gospel Dream 2008 this Sunday night, June 22 at 9:00 p.m. (ET) on Gospel Music Channel television network.

Several thousand entrants became 16 contestants and now six remain: Anita Levels from Penn Hills, Pennsylvania; Bernard Williams of Jonesboro, Georgia; Monroe, North Carolina resident John McKoy; Kymm Lowery of Beach Park, Illinois; Melinda Watts from Fair Oaks, California and Sunshine Mathews from The Sunshine State, Florida. Three of the six semi-finalists will be sent home Sunday night and one will be crowned the winner of Gospel Dream 2008 in the series finale on Sunday, June 29.

The Gospel Dream 2008 winner receives a record & music video deal and a Royal Caribbean Cruise, among other prizes. The fate of the aspiring singers is in the hands of the Gospel/Christian music's version of Paula, Randy & Simon: artists Martha Munizzi and J Moss and famed producer Big Jim Wright. Fans and viewers can vote for their favorites online to see if their choice aligns with the judges at

Gospel Dream 2008 is hosted by Artist/songwriter host Matthew West. Elvin Ross is the creator, executive producer and musical director of the Gospel Dream series.

Gospel Music Channel is the nation's first and only 24/7 television network devoted to the uplifting, inspiring and diverse music that is Gospel/Christian music. Gospel Music Channel is the fastest-growing network in television today and can be seen in nearly 40 million homes on various cable systems around the country and on DIRECTV channel 338.

Tragic Day for America as California Begins Court-Imposed Same-Sex Marriage

Tragic Day for America as California Begins Court-Imposed Same-Sex Marriage

MEDIA ADVISORY, June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- Vision America Action President Dr. Rick Scarborough pronounced June 17, 2008 "a tragic day for America."

"Thanks to a 5-to-4 decision of the California Supreme Court, on this day, the largest state in the union will begin issuing marriage licenses to homosexual couples," Scarborough observed. "It's another body blow to the institutions of marriage and the family by judicial autocrats."

On May 15, by a one-vote margin, the California high court overturned Proposition 22, a statute providing that "only marriage between a man and a woman is valid and recognized in California." In 2000, Californians passed Prop. 22 by a vote of 61%. But, Scarborough noted, "All it took was five votes on the California Supreme Court to negate the will of millions, exercising their democratic franchise."

Scarborough charged: "The Court even refused to issue a stay of enforcement, though pro-marriage activists collected 1.1 million signatures to put a marriage-protection amendment on the November ballot." The referendum has secured ballot status.

"In their unbridled arrogance, the California justices refused to wait 4 months to allow voters to amend the state's constitution to protect holy matrimony. These aren't the actions of judges but activists bent on promoting their favorite cause at all costs," Scarborough declared.

Though 45 states have a marriage-protection amendment or statute, each will now come under attack. Since California has no residency requirement, same-sex couples will flock there from across the country and return home to challenge the marriage laws of their own states. Homosexual organizations are urging these couples to wait until after the November election to file law suits.

Scarborough warned: "Those who think the judicial assault on marriage won't affect them had better think again. It will impact on everything from adoption to public-school curriculum. Church-based agencies will be forced to place children with same-sex couples or get out of the adoption business. The schools will be required to teach that there's absolutely no difference between a family with a mommy and a daddy and one with two mommies, or two daddies."

Scarborough urged the people of California and America to "resist this monumental evil." The Vision America Action President implored them to "speak out loudly for marriage, the family and God-based morality - and to vote their values in November."

Vision America Action is conducting a series of church- based rallies across the United States this year to educate, mobilize and activate values voters.

For more information on Vision America Action, go to To schedule an interview with Dr. Scarborough, contact Catherine Wyatt at (936) 559-0822 or

Wife of Ailing Chinese Pastor Praying for His Release Before Olympics

Wife of Ailing Chinese Pastor Praying for His Release Before Olympics

SANTA ANA, Calif., June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- Once a month Chen Hongxian is allowed to visit her husband in prison for 30 minutes, two hours away from where she lives. Pastor Zhang Rongliang, leader of the China for Christ house church movement, was sentenced to seven-and-a- half years' imprisonment in June 2006 for "illegally crossing the national border and fraudulently obtaining a passport."

Chen reported that when she visited her husband in early April, Pastor Zhang was doing relatively well. He can walk again, but only short distances. He still suffers from several chronic diseases, such as diabetes and high blood pressure. He suffered a stroke in July 2007 which paralyzed half his body.

Authorities isolated him because his evangelization in prison resulted in too many new believers. Other prisoners risk punishment when they speak with him. Last year a prisoner came to Christ shortly before he was executed. The prisoner wrote to his mother: "I am going to heaven to wait for you, so believe in Jesus."

Chen says: "His heart is still with the ministry of the house church network. He said to me, 'You can do anything to get me out, but under one condition -- I will never leave China. My calling is here.'"

'I Do Not Feel Like A Widow'

"When my husband was sent to prison for the first time, some 30 years ago, I was not a Christian myself. I was really touched by the care of brothers and sisters from the church. They brought me food and visited me during the Chinese New Year. Because of their witness, I also became a believer. I consider the times that my husband was in prison just as a normal part of being a Christian. It is just carrying the cross. This is the price one has to pay as a Christian. I do not feel bad because my husband is in prison and my children can not stay at home because the authorities are after them. I do not feel like a widow.

"However, sometimes I can not sleep. Then I pray, and I can sleep. But I have the feeling that my prayers are not strong enough; that they do not reach heaven. Therefore, I am so grateful that brothers and sisters (around the world) are praying for us. When I pray for my husband, I pray that he may be strong and that he may have peace in his heart."

Chen adds: "I wait for my husband to be released. We hope and pray that he may be released earlier (than scheduled), because of the Olympic Games (which start August 8 in Beijing). That would be great! But when I asked the prison authorities about the possibility of early release, they said, 'You should come together with your children and then we will consider.' (Note: The real reason behind this reply is that authorities are seeking her children; her oldest son was elected into the leadership team of the house church network where Pastor Zhang is one of the leaders.) So there is nothing more that we can do but to just wait and see."

It is not unusual that a prisoner gets early release following "good behavior." However, given Pastor Zhang's case and his evangelization activities in prison, it is - humanly speaking - not likely that he will get an early release.

Last August Open Doors USA launched a one-year countdown to the Summer Olympics called One Minute/One Year/One Country. The goal of the campaign is to unite believers in the West to pray for their persecuted Chinese brothers and sisters in Christ. It's not too late to sign up for the One Minute/One Year/One Country campaign. Go to or

An estimated 200 million Christians worldwide suffer interrogation, arrest and even death for their faith in Christ, with another 200 to 400 million facing discrimination and alienation. Open Doors supports and strengthens believers in the world's most difficult areas through Bible and Christian literature distribution, leadership training and assistance, Christian community development, prayer and presence ministry and advocacy on behalf of suffering believers. To partner with Open Doors USA, call toll free at 888-5-BIBLE-5 (888-524-2535) or go to our Website at

(For more information or to set up an interview, contact Jerry Dykstra at 616-915-4117 or email

Homosexual Marriage Threatens Survival of Western Civilization

Homosexual Marriage Threatens Survival of Western Civilization

The Politically Incorrect Guide™ to Western Civilization Reveals How Homosexual 'Marriage' May Seal the Fate of a Declining Culture

WASHINGTON, June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- Following a decision by four activist Supreme Court judges, homosexual "weddings" are beginning this week in California. In the nation's capital, conservative and family groups are angered by the creation of a Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Caucus in the House of Representatives.

In his new book, The Politically Incorrect Guide(TM) to Western Civilization, author Anthony Esolen writes that the fall of the Greeks was due to the fact that by the fifth century, traditional values of right and wrong had been swept aside to make way for moral relativism that declared "right" was whatever a majority wished it to be.

"The victors in the ideological struggles of the last hundred years claim that law is simply what we make it--and whatever we want is all right," says Esolen. "It divorces us culturally from traditional values and morality, as we see daily in the call for homosexual 'marriage.' Californians may not notice the results of homosexual marriage tomorrow, but the concept of marriage will eventually be destroyed, weakening the state and the rest of the nation."

To receive a review copy, or to schedule an interview with Anthony Esolen, please contact Meredith Bagdazian at (202) 216-0601 x440 or

Catholic Anti-Abortion Activist, Joseph Landry, on Trial for 'Trespass' at St. Jude's Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Florida, Under the Authority of Bisho

Catholic Anti-Abortion Activist, Joseph Landry, on Trial for 'Trespass' at St. Jude's Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Florida, Under the Authority of Bishop Robert N. Lynch

WASHINGTON, June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- On Wednesday, June 18, at 8:30 a.m., Joseph Landry will stand trial at 14250 49th St N, Clearwater, FL 33762 (County of Pinellas: Criminal Justice Center) for "criminal trespassing" for handing out pro-life flyers in the parking lot of St. Jude's Cathedral during mass.

Mr. Landry is a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville; he majored in philosophy and theology; since graduating he has spent the last four years in full-time service to church in missions, youth work at the diocesan level, and pro-life work.

Mr. Landry was in the news several times for his work against pro-abortion candidate Rudy Giuliani in New Hampshire and Florida.

The flyer is a political parity entitled, " Real Solutions for the Negro Problem." The tract argues that a Christian cannot vote for a racist under any condition, even if the voter agrees with the candidate on all other issues; i.e., racism is an automatic disqualifier for a candidate seeking political office.

The flyer then uses this logic and ethical foundation to show that likewise, a Christian may not in good conscience vote for a candidate who supports the killing of unborn children by abortion; support of child killing is an automatic disqualifier for a candidate seeking political office.

The flyer states specifically: "Should a Christian vote for someone who supports slavery? No! Should a Christian vote for a racist who supports segregation? No! Then how can a Christian vote for a candidate that supports the murder of children by abortion?!"

For months, Catholics have been calling Bishop Lynch's office, asking the church to drop him the charges. The church has told people that it is not pressing charges, or that the charges "have been taken care of," or indicated in some way that Mr. Landry is not going to be tried for trespass for handing out pro-life literature in a Catholic parking lot.

Unfortunately, none of these assertions have proven true; Mr. Landry will now stand trail by jury for "trespassing" at the Church he loves and serves faithfully.

Mr. Landry states: "My pro-life activism is in obedience to the Churches teaching; I am being tried for obeying the call of JPII to fight for the unborn! It's a sad day when a Parish uses resources to fight fellow Catholics, rather than fight against the killing of children. I should be viewed as an ideal young Catholic who is striving to protect the innocent unborn. The babies that need to be rescued don't care how politically correct I am."

To interview Joseph Landry, call: 406 860 9738.

To ask Bishop Lynch to drop the charges call: 727 344 1611.

Imperfect Fathers, Wounded Children: How to Heal from 'Father Wounds'

Imperfect Fathers, Wounded Children: How to Heal from 'Father Wounds'

ENUMCLAW, Wash., June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- Most of us have bickered with our "significant other" over something that's not our loved one's fault. The argument was likely triggered by something that happened in our past.

The behavior of our parents-particularly our fathers- leaves a lasting imprint on our lives, claims clinical psychologist Kathy Rodriguez, author of "Healing the Father Wound." In order to grow spiritually, she says, "We must address our emotional woundedness and the imprint our fathers have left upon our lives, for better or for worse."

Rodriguez asserts that many people are unable to receive God's love because their earthly fathers have wounded them or have been absent altogether. The results of "fatherlessness" are evident, particularly among the teen population, says Rodriguez: sky-high dropout and teen pregnancy rates, kids killing their peers or themselves in mass school shootings, and kids hurling themselves through cyberspace to escape reality.

Consider the staggering statistics about fatherlessness that Paul Lewis presents in "Five Key Habits of Smart Dads:"

- Fatherless daughters are 92 percent more likely to fail in their own marriages.
- Seventy percent of all young men incarcerated in the U.S. come from fatherless homes.
- Principals across the nation report aggressive, acting out behavior, especially from boys who come from single-parent homes.

"Approximately 94 percent of us come from some type of dysfunctional family background," says Rodriguez. "When we work off of these distorted parental images and our own woundedness, we often find it difficult to accept God's parenting."

Her goal is to help people recover the ability to be parented by their Heavenly Father. "'Healing the Father Wound' is an integrated approach to healing emotional woundedness in Christians who have less- than-perfect childhoods," says Rodriguez. "The book provides a systematic healing process for individuals and small groups to address their emotional woundedness and welcome Father God home to their hearts."

Rodriguez helps her readers identify four types of inadequate fathering and the legacy each produces, understand how a "father wound" impacts significant intimate relationships, recognize the characteristics of a good dad, and learn how to re-parent and forgive.

Christians are broken people like everyone else, adds Rodriguez. "Jesus helps us put the pieces of the image of God back together so we can live as God intended-as His kids."

For a review copy or to schedule an interview contact Adam Cothes at 360-802-9758 or

California Same Sex Marriage, Court Mandated Sin Against God

California Same Sex Marriage, Court Mandated Sin Against God

"Can a throne of destruction be allied with You, One which devises mischief by decree?" Psalm 94:20

SAN DIEGO, June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- It is indeed with great sadness that California has slid off of its foundations into moral anarchy. The California State Supreme Court has not only ignored the current laws of California, but have forsaken God who has given them the responsibility to uphold righteous laws, not degrade the institution of marriage which even represent Christ and the church.

"It is truly amazing that the homosexual community desired the government to get out of their bedroom and now they use the government to force their bedroom upon the general populace. They will not be satisfied until they have sodomized the entire culture, including the family, schools and even the church which should be a safe haven for children, not hedonistic indoctrination camps." So says Phil Magnan, President of Biblical Family Advocates Magnan continued, "But the blame cannot be solely placed on the homosexuals or even the courts. Christian churches must wake up to the fact that they must now stand together against this destructive movement, not only by denouncing it from their pulpits, but through Christ, compassionately provide a way for homosexuals to leave it. For Christ came to seek and save the lost, not allow them to be destroyed by their sin. We must begin to face the truth that these kinds of relationships are very wrong, not just an alternative lifestyle. Apathy and indifference are a poor answer to this moral crisis."

Biblical Family Advocates calls on Christian churches across America to take these immoral movements as shots across the bow to be pro active in protecting the sanctity of marriage by being a moral example to their communities by the example of godly marriages and celibate single life. Additionally, the need for Constitutional amendments to protect marriage and family will be needed to protect the voters from this kind of judicial tyranny.

It is apparent that California falls into the category of what Isaiah 3:9 the Prophet said so many years ago. "The expression of their faces bears witness against them, And they display their sin like Sodom; They do not even conceal it, Woe to them! For they have brought evil on themselves."

USA has Shale Oil Eight Times Saudi Arabia Oil

USA has Shale Oil Eight Times Saudi Arabia Oil

MEDIA ADVISORY, June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- A series of solutions to America's energy crisis to end American dependence on foreign oil has been launched in New Media Journal. "A Real Energy Strategy for America" challenges Washington to stop trading shallow rhetoric and solve America's energy crisis.

In the first installment, author Jon Moseley reveals that the United States has as much as 8 times as much oil in the form of "shale oil" as all of Saudi Arabia's oil. America could end all imports of foreign oil if these shale oil resources were developed.

The Wall Street Journal editorial page then picked up the theme of accessing America's shale oil resources, shortly after publication in the New Media Journal.

America's vast supplies of shale oil has not been tapped because it was too expensive when oil was trading at $19 per barrel. And no one has taken action now that oil has exceeded $137 per barrel out of inertia. Environmentalists oppose all success in the economy and all use of energy. And about 80% of all shale oil is on land owned or controlled by the Federal Government. Therefore, Congressional action is needed to access the 1 to 2 trillion barrels of oil currently residing in the Mid-West.

Shale oil currently supplies about 90% of the electricity and 76% of the total energy for Estonia, in Eastern Europe, on the Baltic Sea. An oil shale demonstration plant in Queensland, Australia produced 700,000 barrels of oil between 2001 and 2003.

SEE -- 8/06092008.htm

New energy solutions will appear in the New Media Journal every Tuesday throughout the Summer.


Jon Moseley studied physics at Hampshire College and the University of Amherst, with a Finance degree from the University of Florida. Moseley promoted the Strategic Defense Initiative at High Frontier and at the Center for Peace & Freedom at the Heritage Foundation.

Nach Tötung von zwei Kindern: 37-jährigen Tatverdächtigen festgenommen

Nach Tötung von zwei Kindern: 37-jährigen Tatverdächtigen festgenommen

Ludwigshafen. (red). 28. Juni 2008. Nach dem ein 37jähriger Mann aus Ludwigshafen seine zwei Kinder getötet hat und seine Ehefrau schwer verletzte, wollte sich der mutmaßliche Täter offenbar selbst töten.

Über Jogger erfuhr die Polizei heute gegen 11.30 Uhr, dass im Bereich des Willersinn-Weihers In Ludwigshafen am Rhein ein verletzter Mann liegen würde.

Beamte fanden dies kurze Zeit später bestätigt. Es handelt sich bei ihm um den 37-Jährigen, der in dringendem Verdacht steht, in der vergangenen Nacht seine beiden Kinder getötet und seine Ehefrau schwer verletzt zu haben.

Er wurde mit stark blutenden Wunden in ein Krankenhaus eingeliefert und schwebt derzeit in Lebensgefahr.

Es ist zum jetzigen Zeitpunkt davon auszugehen, dass er versucht hat sich umzubringen.

Die Ermittlungen der Mordkommission dauern an.

Zum Hintergrund:

Notruf bei Polizei: Mann sagt er habe seine ganze Familie umgebracht

Ludwigshafen am Rhein. (red). 28. Juni 2008. Kurz vor 1 Uhr am 28. Juni 2008, wurden in einem Anwesen in der Notwendesiedlung in Ludwighafen ein 4-jähriges Mädchen und ein 12-jähriger Junge tot aufgefunden, die Opfer eines Gewaltverbrechens geworden sind.

Ihre 33- Jahre alte Mutter wurde schwerstverletzt ebenfalls in dem Anwesen gefunden und in ein Krankenhaus eingeliefert .Sie schwebt derzeit nicht mehr in Lebensgefahr.

Um 00.42 Uhr hatte ein Mann über Notruf der Polizei mitgeteilt, dass er seine ganze Familie umgebracht habe.

Zum derzeitigen Stand der Ermittlungen richtet sich ein Tatverdacht gegen den 37-jährigen Familienvater, dessen Aufenthaltsort nicht bekannt ist.

Im Rahmen der Fahndungsmaßnahmen durchsuchten bis ca. 05.30 Uhr drei Dutzend Polizeibeamtinnen und Polizeibeamte den weiteren Bereich der Notwendesiedlung, ohne den Gesuchten finden zu können.

Bei diesen Maßnahmen waren die Diensthundestaffel und der Polizeihubschrauber im Einsatz.

Die Ermittlungen der Mordkommission dauern an.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

More GP Surgeries open longer

More GP Surgeries open longer

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- More patients are able to see their GP in the evenings and at weekends, statistics released today by the Department of Health show.

New statistics for May 2008, published for the first time, show that 20% of family doctor practices are already offering extended opening for their patients. And in 21 Primary Care Trusts more than half the local family doctor services are offering extended opening.

Following changes to the GP contract agreed with the British Medical Association in March, the local NHS is working with family doctors in each area of the country to agree arrangements for extra weekend and/or evening opening. The Government's aim is that by the end of the year at least 50% of GP surgeries will be offering extended opening hours, either in the evenings or at weekends. The statistics released today show that there has already been fast progress towards this objective in many parts of the country with the percentage of surgeries offering extended opening hour up from 12% in April this year.

Health Services Minister Ben Bradshaw said:

"Today's data shows that the NHS is well on track to achieve our aim of at least half of GPs providing extended hours for patients by the end of the year. This is great news for patients

"Patients tell us that access to GP services is a real issue - they want greater flexibility and choice over when they can see their family doctor. People want more personal and convenient health care, so primary care services need to adapt to respond to this need. I'm very pleased that so many GPs are already responding to this and we expect more and more GPs doing so over the coming months."

In addition to changing the GP contract to reward GP practices that extend their opening hours, the Government is investing an extra £250 million in primary care including:

* setting up over 100 new GP practices in parts of the country that have fewer GPs and greater health challenges;

* opening over 150 GP-led health centres across the country, which will provide access to GP services from 8am-8pm, seven days a week, Any member of the public will be able to use these additional services, while staying registered with their local family doctor service; and

* consulting with the British Medical Association on proposals for an additional £105 million investment to help all GP surgeries further improve the range and quality of services they provide for their patients

Bundeswettbewerb: Jugend debattiert

Bundeswettbewerb: Jugend debattiert

Berlin. Zum Bundeswettbewerb "Jugend debattiert" sprach Bundespräsident Dr. Horst Köhler am 15. Juni 2008 folgende Grußwort:

"Erziehung zur Demokratie

Liebe Debattanten,
liebe Projektbeteiligte,
meine Damen und Herren,

auch ich als Schirmherr heiße Sie herzlich willkommen zu unserem Bundesfinale 2008. Bei den vielen Debatten unseres Wettbewerbes, die ich in den letzten vier Jahren verfolgt habe, konnte ich immer wieder erleben, was der französische Essayist Joseph Joubert mit seinem Ausspruch meinte, dass "der Sinn einer Debatte nicht Sieg, sondern Gewinn" sei.

Sie alle hier haben es selbst oft erfahren können: Teilnehmer und Zuhörer einer guten Debatte gewinnen durch präzise, fair vorgetragene Argumente an Einsicht und Erkenntnis. Eine Debatte ist immer ein Wettstreit, bei dem um die besten Argumente gerungen wird. Aber im Gegensatz zur ursprünglichen Bedeutung des französischen Wortes "débat" geht es dabei nicht um das Niederschlagen des Gegners. Es geht vielmehr um Überzeugungskraft, um das Vertreten des eigenen Standpunktes und die Auseinandersetzung mit anderen Auffassungen.

Debatten sind Verstandesübungen, die eine Grundlage für Verständigung und gemeinsames Handeln schaffen. Sie helfen, die Welt von vielen Seiten kennen zu lernen, sie entlarven Totschlagargumente und: sie machen Spaß. Dies alles und damit letztlich die Fähigkeit, verantwortlich von der eigenen Freiheit Gebrauch zu machen - das zu erlernen und zu üben ist der Sinn von "Jugend debattiert", und deshalb bin ich dankbar, dass es diese Initiative gibt.

Sechs Jahre währt die Erfolgsgeschichte des Bundeswettbewerbs "Jugend debattiert" nun schon. Jahr für Jahr wächst die Zahl der Schüler, Lehrer und Schulen, die sich beteiligen - fast 200.000 Schülerinnen und Schüler waren es bisher insgesamt. "Jugend debattiert" ist also eine echte Erfolgsgeschichte, und noch etwas: "Jugend debattiert" hat sich, wie erfolgreiche Unternehmen das oft tun, diversifiziert. Neben dem starken Stamm des bundesweiten Wettbewerbs haben eine ganze Reihe kleinerer und größerer Ableger inzwischen Wurzeln geschlagen.

Der stärkste Ableger ist "Jugend debattiert International", das schon in sechs Ländern Mittel- und Osteuropas stattfindet, und bei dem es im letzten Herbst ein erstes internationales Finale mit allen Siegerinnen und Siegern der Landeswettbewerbe gab.

Hier wird auch deutlich, dass "Jugend debattiert" viel mehr ist als nur eine Rednerschule: Es schafft Begegnung über Landesgrenzen hinweg und leistet damit einen Beitrag zur Völkerverständigung. Mein Dank gilt hier insbesondere der Stiftung Erinnerung, Verantwortung und Zukunft und dem Goethe-Institut, die das internationale Projekt so wirkungsvoll unterstützt haben.

Ein weiteres fruchtbares Pflänzchen sind die Debatten in vielen Bundesländern vor Landtagswahlen mit den Spitzenkandidaten der Parteien. Hier wird ein weiteres wichtiges Anliegen unseres Wettbewerbs sichtbar: Erziehung zur Demokratie - die ist ohne die Fähigkeit zur Debatte, ohne den Austausch von Argumenten, ohne das Abwägen von Für und Wider und ohne das Werben für den eigenen Standpunkt gar nicht denkbar.

Daneben sind weitere Ideen entstanden: Schaudebatten zu verschiedenen Themen etwa oder jüngst der regionale Wettbewerb "Jugend debattiert Freiheit", dessen Sieger vor wenigen Wochen in der Frankfurter Paulskirche vor großem Publikum gekürt wurden.

Liebe Lehrerinnen und Lehrer, ich weiß, dass hinter solchen Aktivitäten und dem Projekt insgesamt viel Mühe und großer Einsatz stecken. Hier arbeiten Schüler, Lehrer, Schulverwaltung, die Trainer und die Landesbeauftragten und nicht zuletzt die Mitarbeiter der fördernden Stiftungen und der Geschäftsstelle - und nicht zu vergessen: die Eltern - auf den unterschiedlichen Ebenen zusammen - von der ersten Debatte an der eigenen Schule bis hin zum heutigen Bundesfinale.

"Jugend debattiert" ist ein gutes Beispiel dafür, wie Bildung durch das Engagement und die Partnerschaft vieler Menschen und Institutionen gelingen kann. Gute Bildung liegt eben nicht nur in der Verantwortung der Schulen. Allen diesen Partnern möchte ich herzlich danken für Ihren unermüdlichen Einsatz. Danken möchte ich aber vor allem auch den Lehrerinnen und Lehrern. Ich weiß, dass Ihr Engagement für diesen Wettbewerb weit über das Stundendeputat hinausreicht, das Ihnen für "Jugend debattiert" erlassen wird. Sie leisten vorbildliche Arbeit. Das kann man nicht oft genug sagen.

Liebe Teilnehmer, die Früchte dieses Gemeinschaftswerks wollen wir jetzt ernten. Auch wenn wir heute alle Gewinner sind, wird es trotzdem auch Sieger geben, und die werden Sie gleich ermitteln.

Ich bin gespannt auf dieses Bundesfinale und wünsche uns allen anregende und lebhafte Debatten und den Teilnehmern Freude, Spaß und viel Erfolg!"

MoD announces public consultation on UAV airspace expansion

MoD announces public consultation on UAV airspace expansion

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- The increasing sophistication of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) used by UK Armed Forces means that the current airspace above Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire is now insufficient to accommodate the full training requirement. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) is therefore undertaking public consultation on proposals to extend the existing segregated airspace to include an additional area to the south of the Salisbury Plain Training Area.

The proposed new area of operation, bounded by Warminster, Andover, Stockbridge and Shaftesbury, would only be activated when required for training, predominantly during normal working hours. It would include additional airspace to provide separation from civil air traffic when activated.

Following initial discussion with various organisations, the public consultation period will last until late September, and will include drop-in sessions at Salisbury Guildhall on 22 July and 30 August from 2pm to 6pm. Its aim is to seek comment and feedback on the proposals from interested parties.

"Watchkeeper, the MoD's new tactical UAV, is likely to be the first UAV to utilise the proposed airspace, which extends from 8,000 to 16,000 feet. At those altitudes it will be difficult for a ground observer to see or hear the UAV," said Commander Dennis Ryan from the MoD project team. The proposed new airspace may affect a small proportion of the aviation community that currently uses this airspace, but procedures will be put in place to ensure any disruption is kept to an absolute minimum."

"Unmanned aircraft are proving to be a great asset in improving the effectiveness of deployed forces, particularly in the intelligence and surveillance roles, and are now in use on operations", said Commander Ryan. "The new generation of equipment has considerably improved performance and sensor capability that requires integration into military training exercises."

Operation at height to the south of the Salisbury Plain Training Area is aimed at providing a "look down" capability onto the training area from up to 15 miles away. Operating at greater height and distance is a key element in reducing the risk from hostile action on operations. Imagery produced will only be employed for operational training purposes, and will be subject to the 1998 Data Protection Act.

Subject to any changes arising from the consultation process, and with regulatory approval from the Civil Aviation Authority, implementation is planned by the end of 2009.

Defence security and technology company QinetiQ is contracted by MoD to provide support to the Airspace Change Proposal and consultation exercise. For further information, or to register your views as part of the public consultation please visit or post queries to: Airspace Consultation, MoD Boscombe Down, Wiltshire SP4 0JF. E-mail to

MoD announces public consultation on UAV airspace expansion

MoD announces public consultation on UAV airspace expansion

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- The increasing sophistication of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) used by UK Armed Forces means that the current airspace above Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire is now insufficient to accommodate the full training requirement. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) is therefore undertaking public consultation on proposals to extend the existing segregated airspace to include an additional area to the south of the Salisbury Plain Training Area.

The proposed new area of operation, bounded by Warminster, Andover, Stockbridge and Shaftesbury, would only be activated when required for training, predominantly during normal working hours. It would include additional airspace to provide separation from civil air traffic when activated.

Following initial discussion with various organisations, the public consultation period will last until late September, and will include drop-in sessions at Salisbury Guildhall on 22 July and 30 August from 2pm to 6pm. Its aim is to seek comment and feedback on the proposals from interested parties.

"Watchkeeper, the MoD's new tactical UAV, is likely to be the first UAV to utilise the proposed airspace, which extends from 8,000 to 16,000 feet. At those altitudes it will be difficult for a ground observer to see or hear the UAV," said Commander Dennis Ryan from the MoD project team. The proposed new airspace may affect a small proportion of the aviation community that currently uses this airspace, but procedures will be put in place to ensure any disruption is kept to an absolute minimum."

"Unmanned aircraft are proving to be a great asset in improving the effectiveness of deployed forces, particularly in the intelligence and surveillance roles, and are now in use on operations", said Commander Ryan. "The new generation of equipment has considerably improved performance and sensor capability that requires integration into military training exercises."

Operation at height to the south of the Salisbury Plain Training Area is aimed at providing a "look down" capability onto the training area from up to 15 miles away. Operating at greater height and distance is a key element in reducing the risk from hostile action on operations. Imagery produced will only be employed for operational training purposes, and will be subject to the 1998 Data Protection Act.

Subject to any changes arising from the consultation process, and with regulatory approval from the Civil Aviation Authority, implementation is planned by the end of 2009.

Defence security and technology company QinetiQ is contracted by MoD to provide support to the Airspace Change Proposal and consultation exercise. For further information, or to register your views as part of the public consultation please visit or post queries to: Airspace Consultation, MoD Boscombe Down, Wiltshire SP4 0JF. E-mail to

Pofalla: 17. Juni ist Mahnung gegen Verklärung der DDR-Diktatur

Pofalla: 17. Juni ist Mahnung gegen Verklärung der DDR-Diktatur

Berlin. (red). 17. Juni 2008. Anlässlich des Jahrestages des Volksaufstandes vom 17. Juni 1953 erklärte der Generalsekretär der CDU Deutschlands, Ronald Pofalla: "55 Jahre nach dem mutigen Aufstand gegen die SED-Diktatur gedenkt die CDU Deutschlands der unschuldigen Toten, willkürlich Inhaftierten und unzähligen Drangsalierten. Mit ihrem unerschrockenen Eintreten für Freiheit, Einheit und Demokratie wollten sie nicht länger hinnehmen, dass die kommunistischen Machthaber ihre unveräußerlichen Menschenrechte weiterhin mit Füßen traten.

Die gewaltsame und blutige Niederschlagung der Proteste war ein Verbrechen gegen die Menschlichkeit. Die Herrschaft der SED gründete sich auf Terror, Unterdrückung und Bespitzelung. Wer, wie die Linkspartei heute noch, in dem SED-Staat einen "berechtigten Gegensatz" zur freiheitlich demokratischen Grundordnung der Bundesrepublik sieht, verhöhnt die Opfer der Diktatur. Die Verklärung der DDR-Diktatur und die Hofierung der SED-Erben sind zwei Seiten derselben Medaille.

Der Mut der Menschen in der DDR nötigt auch nach 55 Jahren jedem aufrechten Demokraten allerhöchsten Respekt ab. Die Kommunisten konnten den Ruf nach Freiheit lediglich unterdrücken, nicht jedoch ersticken. 1989 wurden sie von der friedlichen Revolution eingeholt.

Der 55. Jahrestag des Volksaufstandes ist Auftrag und Mahnung zugleich, die erkämpfte Freiheit gegen ihre Feinde zu verteidigen. Dies fängt im Geschichtsunterricht in der Schule an und hört in den Parlamenten auf. Und Erinnerung braucht Erinnerungsorte: Es ist richtig, dass die zentrale Allee im Herzen Berlins den Namen "Straße des 17. Juni" trägt und heute die Initiatoren des Freiheits- und Einheitsdenkmals den Nationalpreis 2008 erhalten."

LINKE lehnt Abschieberichtlinie der EU ab

LINKE lehnt Abschieberichtlinie der EU ab

Berlin. (red). 17. Juni 2008. Vor der Entscheidung des Europäischen Parlaments über die 'Rückführungs-Richtlinie' appellierte Ulla Jelpke, innenpolitische Sprecherin der Fraktion DIE LINKE, an die Mitglieder des Europäischen Parlaments, der Richtlinie die Zustimmung zu verweigern. Zugleich unterzeichnete sie einen entsprechenden Appell der Linksfraktion im Europäischen Parlament, welcher die mit der jetzigen Fassung der Richtlinie verbundene Kriminalisierung und Entrechtung von Migrantinnen und Migranten sowie Flüchtlingen scharf kritisiert. Jelpke:

"Menschen, denen nichts anderes vorgeworfen wird, als dass sie sich unrechtmäßig in der Europäischen Union aufhalten, sollen bis zu 18 Monate ihrer Freiheit beraubt werden können, um ihre Abschiebung besser durchsetzen zu können. Das soll selbst für - auch unbegleitete - Minderjährige gelten. Geplant ist weiterhin unter anderem ein langjähriges Wiedereinreiseverbot für die gesamte EU nach einer Abschiebung.

Der vermeintliche 'Raum der Freiheit, der Sicherheit und des Rechts' - so die Selbstbezeichnung der europäischen Innen- und Justizpolitik - verwandelt sich für unerwünschte und abgelehnte Flüchtlinge auf diese Weise in einen Raum der Unfreiheit, der Unsicherheit und des Unrechts. Die EU stellt sich nach Außen zwar als ein 'Hort der Menschenrechte' dar. Im Umgang mit unerwünschten Migrantinnen und Migranten gelten diese Menschenrechte jedoch wenig. Die 'Rückführungs-Richtlinie' steht beispielhaft für eine Politik der Abschottung der EU gegenüber dem 'Rest der Welt', mit der bestehende globale Ungleichheiten rücksichtslos und um nahezu jeden Preis verteidigt werden sollen.

Die 'Rückführungs-Richtlinie' entspricht in etwa der geltenden deutschen Rechtslage, die von der LINKEN seit jeher massiv kritisiert wird. Dass das restriktive deutsche Abschiebehaftregime nun EU-Standard werden soll, spiegelt die beschämende deutsche Rolle im Prozess der so genannten europäischen 'Harmonisierungsprozesse' wieder. Für uns ist dies umso mehr Anlass dafür, an alle Mitglieder des Europäischen Parlaments zu appellieren, sich für die Menschenrechte gerade in dem Moment besonders einzusetzen, in dem das Parlament das erste mal im Bereich der Asyl- und Migrationspolitik tatsächlich inhaltlich mitbestimmen kann und damit faktisch ein Vetorecht besitzt."

ver.di-Studie zur Krankenhausfinanzierung: mehr Schaden als Nutzen durch "Budgetdeckel"

ver.di-Studie zur Krankenhausfinanzierung: mehr Schaden als Nutzen durch "Budgetdeckel"

Berlin. (red) 17. Juni 2008 Die sogenannte Deckelung der Krankenhausbudgets ist nicht geeignet, für stabile Beitragssätze bei den Krankenkassen zu sorgen, hat aber
gleichzeitig zu erheblichen Finanzierungsproblemen der Kliniken geführt. Das ist das Ergebnis einer Studie zur Krankenhausbudgetierung, die von der Vereinten
Dienstleistungsgewerkschaft (ver.di) in Auftrag gegeben wurde. Am Mittwoch findet im Gesundheitsausschuss des Deutschen Bundestags eine Anhörung zu diesem Thema statt.

Trotz mehrfacher Änderungen an der seit 1993 bestehenden Budgetierung hätten die Krankenkassen das Ziel stabiler Beiträge nicht erreicht. Mit der Budgetdeckelung sei keine Beitragssatzstabilität zu erreichen, schreibt Professor Michael Simon von der Fachhochschule Hannover in seiner Expertise. "Das Hauptproblem der gesetzlichen
Krankenversicherung liegt nicht auf der Ausgabenseite, sondern auf der Einnahmeseite", betont der Gesundheitswissenschaftler.

Gleichzeitig seien seit der Verschärfung der Deckelung im Zeitraum von 1996 bis 2005 fast 100.000 Vollzeitstellen in den Kliniken abgebaut worden. Vielerorts seien bereits "deutliche Anzeichen für eine Überlastung in vielen Bereichen" zu erkennen. Dies widerspreche der grundgesetzlich verankerten Daseinsvorsorge. Das "überragende
Ziel staatlicher Krankenhauspolitik" sei nicht die Beitragssatzstabilität der Krankenkassen, sondern die Sicherstellung einer bedarfsgerechten Krankenhausversorgung, stellt Professor Simon fest.

Die Deckelung der Krankenhausbudgets habe "nicht den wünschenswerten Effekt" gehabt, resümiert ver.di. Der "Budgetdeckel" müsse daher zum 1. Januar 2009 entfallen. Die Krankenhausbudgets sollten künftig ohne gesetzliche Obergrenze durch einheitliche und gemeinsame Verträge der Krankenkassen mit den Kliniken vereinbart werden, fordert die

MoD - Investors in People

MoD - Investors in People

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- The Ministry of Defence has become the largest organisation ever to be recognised as meeting the Investors in People (IiP) Standard.

The IiP assessors singled out a number of excellent examples of good practice including a sound approach to flexible working, giving staff freedom to work autonomously and identifying talent and encouraging development.

Permanent Under Secretary for the MOD, Bill Jeffrey, said:

"IiP recognition across the whole department is a fantastic achievement, particularly as it has been attained against a backdrop of change programmes and intense operational demands. The IiP process is, in effect, an audit of what we are doing to improve our management of people, and - although there is much still to do - recognition confirms that we are on the right track. The MOD recognises the importance of training and developing staff and is working hard to be an even better employer."

Simon Jones, Chief Executive, Investors in People UK, said:

"Employees are central to the success of any organisation and there's a clear relationship between the way a workforce is managed, motivated and supported and its performance in support of organisational goals. The MOD recognises this link and we are delighted that Investors in People has played such an important role in helping the Department develop and implement comprehensive people management practices. Congratulations to the MOD which is now the largest employer to be Investors in People recognised."

Avian Influenza epidemiology report published

Avian Influenza epidemiology report published

LONDON. June 17,2008/ Defra has today published an epidemiology report into the Avian Influenza outbreak confirmed in Oxfordshire on 4 June.

The report concludes that, at the time of writing (11 June), the outbreak is confined to a single premises, and there is no evidence of infection in the Protection Zone or of spread to any other premises. However, investigations continue.

The report suggests that it is possible that the Highly Pathogenic H7N7 Avian influenza derived from a Low Pathogenic strain already present on the farm, analysis and investigations are ongoing, and a number of source hypotheses are being considered.

Chief Veterinary Officer, Nigel Gibbens, said

"The UK is at a constant but low level of risk of the introduction of Avian Influenza, and the report highlights the need for flock owners and poultry vets to remain vigilant for signs of disease, including the possibility of low pathogenic Avian Influenza. I would encourage all keepers to maintain good quality records and practise high standards of biosecurity."

The Protection and Surveillance Zones remain in place. Further surveillance, testing and epidemiological work on this outbreak are ongoing.

Frauenpolitik: Nationaler Pakt ist zu unverbindlich

Frauenpolitik: Nationaler Pakt ist zu unverbindlich

Berlin. (red). 17. Juni 2008. "In der Sache nicht falsch, aber zu unverbindlich ist der heutige Schritt der Bundesregierung zu mehr Geschlechtergerechtigkeit im Berufsleben", erklärt Kirsten Tackmann, frauenpolitische Sprecherin der Fraktion DIE LINKE anlässlich der heutigen Unterzeichnung des Nationalen Pakts für mehr Frauen in MINT-Berufen durch Bundesforschungsministerin Annette Schavan.

Petra Sitte, forschungs- und technologiepolitische Sprecherin der Fraktion ergänzt: "Ein Pakt zwischen der Regierung, Verbänden und Wissenschaftseinrichtungen soll das Bild naturwissenschaftlicher und technischer Berufe in der Gesellschaft verändern. Doch damit mehr Frauen eine qualifizierte Ausbildung bekommen und in diesen Berufen ankommen, reicht es nicht, einseitig Frauen zu mobilisieren. Unternehmen und Wissenschaftseinrichtungen müssen in gleichem Maße ihre Strategien zur Nachwuchsgewinnung und zur Besetzung von Leitungspositionen ändern."

Tackmann weiter: "DIE LINKE hat zwei Anträge in den Bundestag zu mehr Geschlechtergerechtigkeit in der Privatwirtschaft sowie in Wissenschaft und Forschung eingebracht. Darin fordern wir, Unternehmen verbindlich zu verpflichten, Maßnahmen zur Gleichstellung der Geschlechter zu ergreifen. Nur so kommen Frauen im gewählten Beruf auch wirklich an. Zurzeit bekommt die Hälfte aller Ingenieurinnen mit Fachhochschulabschluss keine Anstellung im Beruf, bei Universitätsabsolventinnen sind es sogar zwei Drittel. Auch die aktuell vorgestellte 3. Bilanz zur Chancengleichheit von Frauen und Männern in der Privatwirtschaft macht deutlich, wie notwendig eine aktive Geschlechterpolitik ist, denn nach wie vor sind Frauen in allen Bereichen der Privatwirtschaft deutlich schlechter gestellt."

"Nicht anders sieht es in der Wissenschaft aus, wo mit steigender Position der Frauenanteil sinkt und Frauen seit vielen Jahren nur etwa zwölf bis 14 Prozent aller Professuren ausmachen. Dabei ist hier die Öffnung von unten mit Studienanfängerinnen von über 50 Prozent schon längst gelungen. Was fehlt, sind transparente Bewerbungsverfahren mit verstärkter weiblicher Mitbestimmung, verbindliche Quoten für Leitungspositionen und eine institutionalisierte Nachwuchsförderung. DIE LINKE fordert, dass das Fortkommen von Frauen unabhängig vom Gutdünken meist männlicher Chefs werden muss", so Petra Sitte.

£9m makeover for HMS Monmouth

£9m makeover for HMS Monmouth

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- The Type 23 frigate HMS Monmouth is to get a boost to her top speed in a £9 million overhaul to be carried out by Babcock Marine at Rosyth in Scotland, Defence Minister, Baroness Taylor, announced today.

As well as essential routine maintenance work, the refit will furnish the ship with important new capabilities including an upgraded Surface Ship Torpedo Defence (SSTD) system, and modifications to the gearbox systems to enable the ship to operate at increased power and speed. The crew will benefit from an overhaul of the living quarters and an updated air conditioning system, essential for operating in hotter climates. Enhanced safety mechanisms will also be installed including an updated fire detection system.

Minister for Defence Equipment and Support, Baroness Taylor, said:
"This work is vital for keeping our existing fleet in top condition, enhancing it with new technology which is essential to efficiently provide the Royal Navy with the capability it requires. This is an excellent contract for Babcock Marine and will help secure many jobs in Rosyth."

The MoD Surface Combatants team leader, Commodore Graham Peach, said: "Part of the refit work will include modifications to the ship's gearboxes so they can handle the maximum power output of the gas turbines. We think this will also give Monmouth a couple of knots extra speed. Overall, the work will equip Monmouth for many years more service."

Starting in June, the team in Rosyth is expected to spend eight months getting HMS Monmouth fighting fit.

The Type 23 frigates form the backbone of the Royal Navy's anti-submarine frigate force. They were the RN's first 'stealthy' ships, being equipped with a Combined Diesel Electric and Gas propulsion system that allows them to cruise slowly and quietly while hunting submarines.

Norwich and Hemel are streets ahead

Norwich and Hemel are streets ahead

- English Heritage Highlights Schemes Helping to
- Make Better Streets -

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- Major success stories in reducing street clutter, improving street design and reinforcing the distinctive nature of our towns, cities and villages are being highlighted today (Tuesday, 17 June) by English Heritage's Save our Streets campaign.

English Heritage has published Streets for All: Practical Case Studies aimed at encouraging more councils and highway departments to follow the shining example of ten outstanding "street-scape" projects from across the country.

They include a pioneering project to implement improved lighting and CCTV equipment sympathetically within Hemel Hempstead's historic Old Town, and a scheme to successfully remove guardrails at crossings along the Prince of Wales Road in Norwich.

English Heritage launched its Save our Streets campaign in 2004 and since then many councils have removed unnecessary signs, poles, bollards, barriers and road markings.

Forward thinking, coupled with detailed planning in Hemel Hempstead resulted in the creation of a lighting and CCTV strategy that helped enhance the redevelopment of the old town area. Aesthetically pleasing lighting columns and lanterns were introduced alongside CCTV equipment designed to complement the historic environment. Not only have these new measures improved the look of the street scene, they have also dramatically increased lighting levels for clear CCTV coverage. This has successfully contributed towards a reduction in local crime, as well as attracting new businesses to the formerly vacant properties.

In Norwich an innovative scheme, which saw the redesign of crossings and removal of guard railings, freed up pedestrian accessibility and contributed to a significant reduction of accidents. The project involved the implementation of puffin traffic signals, road narrowing and widening of crossing points. Street space was successfully remodelled to transform and revitalise the area.

Greg Luton, Regional Director of English Heritage in the East region, said:
"The response to our Save Our Streets campaign has been tremendous. Lots of councils up and down England are keen to do the right thing, though street improvement schemes can take a long time to achieve. The councils responsible for the case studies we are highlighting today deserve congratulations because they have carefully worked out the procedures for minimising clutter, using existing regulations and guidance and they are prepared to share their knowledge with others. We know that other councils will be inspired by their example and that many are currently working on good schemes of their own."

Local authorities are increasingly recognising that improving the streets brings a range of benefits to everyone. Local businesses report better trade, more people are encouraged to walk and cycle, the streets become safer, more sociable places, and the historic character of an area is enhanced rather than degraded.

Transport Minister Rosie Winterton said:
"The Department for Transport is committed to helping local authorities create high quality street environments and so was delighted to work with English Heritage on this important Streets for All project. These leaflets provide practical advice for local authorities about the small things they can do to make a real difference to our local historic streets, whether by restoring historic surfaces or removing excessive numbers of lamp posts by fixing lights to buildings."

Streets for All, Practical Case Studies consists of a summary document plus ten leaflets, each on a different aspect of making better streets and each featuring a town or city where this has been put into practice. Aimed at local authorities and highways engineers, each leaflet contains detailed advice on issues to be considered, procedures to go through and lists relevant documents and legislation. They help practitioners understand the key elements that make up successful streetscape management.

The sorts of issues tackled by councils which feature in Streets for All, Practical Case Studies include reducing white lines, putting signs on buildings so that poles can be removed and taking away guardrails which, research proves, can actually make roads less dangerous. The case studies also look at the use of historic street surfaces such as cobbles and stone paving flagstones which slow traffic, "match" the buildings around them and have cultural meaning for local people, how to sensitively introduce tactile paving into historic areas and how to involve the local community in a street audit.

Streets for All: Practical Case Studies demonstrates clearly that there is growing momentum behind the movement to improve our streets. In publishing them, English Heritage has the support not only of the Department for Transport, but also of The Institute of Highways and Transportation, CABE Space and the Campaign for Protection of Rural England, which has its own continuing campaign to reduce sign clutter.

Copies of Streets for All: Practical Case Studies, the summary document and ten leaflets, plus English Heritage's previous publications Save Our Streets and the Streets for All headline document and its nine regional manuals can be found at or requested from English Heritage Customer Services on 0870 3331181, email

Every primary school to have a specialist maths teacher

Every primary school to have a specialist maths teacher

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- Ed Balls and Andrew Adonis today accepted the recommendations of a major independent review of maths in primary schools and announced plans to train more than 1,000 specialist maths teachers a year over the next 10 years.

Mr Balls said he would raise maths standards in primary schools by paying specialist maths teachers up to £8,000 in incentive payments and rewards to train towards gaining a Masters in maths teaching.

The Government will invest £24million over the next three years to set up and begin implementing a major training programme for 13,000 existing primary school teachers as he welcomed the final report of the Williams Review of early maths teaching.

In his review Sir Peter Williams calls for an urgent shift to reverse the "can't do attitude" to maths - he said today that he wants every pupil to leave primary school "without a fear of maths".

He recommends that from an early age learning about numbers and shapes should be "rooted in play", he says children should do more "mental maths" in the classroom and urges parents to help their children through games, puzzles and activities like cooking at home.

The review will build on progress already made since 1997 - 83,000 more 11-year-olds each year now achieve the expected level in numeracy for their age, but more needs to be done to accelerate the pace and raise standards even further so that all schools are truly world class.

The Children's Plan set a new goal that every 11-year-old should be ready for success in secondary school and by 2020 at least 90% of children should achieve the right level for their age in English and maths.

Ed Balls said:

"I would like to thank Sir Peter for his report and am determined that we address his stark observation that it's acceptable in England to admit being poor at maths. This is something that needs to be changed urgently, and by accepting his recommendations we will start to do just that.

"That is why I asked Sir Peter to look at attitudes to learning maths, how we can make maths the most exciting subject to teach and learn, and how every school can have access to the most innovative and effective teaching methods.

"As Sir Peter says, basic maths concepts and language need to be firmly embedded in children's minds at a young age - so all children are confident using numbers. Therefore, it is critical that we engage all children early in maths in order for them to do well at secondary level and in their GCSEs.

"We know that excellent teaching is what really makes a difference to the quality of learning. As Sir Peter says, there are many fantastic teachers in our schools whose enthusiasm and skills are really helping children to learn and enjoy maths and I want to build on this.

"I want every primary school to have a specialist maths teacher. That means every school will have a "maths champion", who will act as a mentor and coach to their colleagues as well as being an outstanding classroom teacher for their pupils. I believe they will have a dramatic impact, bringing excitement to maths for every teacher and child in their school.

"Children should not be afraid of numbers. Teachers say that when a child really grasps a new maths concept - like fractions - there is a huge sense of achievement. That feeling of success is what spurs children on to find out more and develop a curiosity about numbers. And developing enthusiasm for learning is the key to helping all children to do better."

Launching the report at the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics' (NCETM) national conference at the Royal Society today, Minister for Schools, Andrew Adonis, said:

"Children need to feel really confident using numbers from an early age and to do that they need to use maths in different ways, like in the playground with sand and water and games like hopscotch. Maths should also become embedded in different subjects across the curriculum, as well as in maths lessons.

"I agree with Sir Peter that we should have a renewed and sharper focus on the use of mental mathematics - particularly to help under-attaining groups of children.

"We all have our part to play in reversing the can't do attitude to maths - carers, childminders, parents and teachers - we all need to change attitudes and help children understand numbers and their importance in the world around them."

Sir Peter Williams said:

"The United Kingdom is still one of the few advanced nations where it is socially acceptable to profess an inability to cope with mathematics. We need to urgently reverse this trend so every pupil leaves primary school without a fear of maths.

"To do that we need to get young graduates to see that joining the teaching profession is valued by the people of this country and that it's a great career choice.

"The best teachers I met during the review were world class and inspired confidence in mathematics in the children they teach. But the best teachers were also those who were the first to accept that even the best can get better.

"That's why I want to see at least one teacher in every primary school in England going through a maths training programme to become a Mathematics Specialist who will inspire not only their children, but also fellow teachers.

"First and foremost, it is our duty and responsibility to each and every child to make sure they are competent in basic maths so that they can succeed in life. But it is also true that the benefits to society of adult competence in mathematics run into billions on pounds. I am a big fan of Every Child Counts."

Sir Peter Williams was asked to report on the status quo of maths in schools, identify what really works to help children be confident in maths, and to tell us what changes we need to make to meet our goal of every 11 year old leaving primary school confident in maths.

Accepting the recommendations in the Review, Ed Balls said he was committed to training the current teaching workforce in primary schools so that every school has a "maths champion" within 10 years, who will act as a mentor and coach as well as being an outstanding classroom teacher.

The key aspects of the recommendations are:

There should be a maths specialist in every primary school in 10 years

* At least 1,000 maths specialists should be trained every year for the next 10 years so there is one in every Primary School in the country;

* This person should be a 'maths champion' and have deep mathematical subject and pedagogical knowledge;

* Implementation should commence in 2009;

* The programme should be targeted initially to narrow attainment gaps;

* Teachers should be offered an incentive to train as a specialist maths teacher and a one off payment on completion;

* There should be a fast-track training programme for teachers who have specialised in maths teaching during their training.

From a young age children should play with shapes, time, capacity and numbers

* The Review supports goals set out in the Children's Plan to increase the proportion of graduate practitioners in early years settings;

* Children's natural interest in numeracy, problem solving, reasoning, shapes and measures should be fostered from an early age;

* Children should be given opportunities indoors and outdoors to explore, enjoy, learn, practise and talk about their developing mathematical understanding;

* Children's mathematical experiences must be fun, meaningful and build confidence. This will promote positive attitudes and deeply rooted learning;

* DCSF should commission a new set of materials on mathematical mark making and supporting children's mathematical development through play are needed to support early years practitioners' CPD.

All children should be competent in basic maths by the age of seven

* There remains a core of pupils who fail to achieve level 3 in mathematics by the time they leave the primary sector at age 11 and effective intervention at an early age could break this trend;

* Intervention for struggling children should happen before the end of KS1;

* Intervention should be led by a qualified teacher and should involve one child;

* Economic factors and social deprivation contribute to learning difficulties in all subjects, including mathematics;

* The use of video techniques in intervention should be investigated.

Children should do more mental maths in the classroom

* Too little attention is paid to building good attitudes to maths - there is a need for culture change both in and out of the classroom;

* The use and application of maths should be incorporated into the wider curriculum cutting across subjects to embed learning;

* A new focus is needed on the use of mental mathematics and would particularly help under-attaining groups of children;

* Teachers need to do more to stretch the most able pupils in maths with more open-ended problem solving tasks to help them see "big picture";

* More needs to be done to kindle children's interests - Jim Rose's review of the Primary Curriculum should consider including the cultural and historical story of science and maths to generate interest in the subject

Parents should work with teachers and help foster their child's interest in maths

* Parents' attitudes to maths has a significant impact on their child's numeracy skills;

* The "can't do" attitude to mathematics in England needs to be urgently reversed;

* Activities such as cooking at home can help children learn and understand maths;

* Schools need to work with parents to dispel myths about the mystery of mathematics and give both children and parents a good grounding and positive attitude to this subject;

* Teachers should work with parents to bring them up to date with the methods used to teach mathematics currently;

* There is clearly a link between parents' with low level skills and their children's under-attainment in mathematics.

The Department for Children, Schools and Families will now develop plans for training specialist maths teachers with a pathfinder programme in autumn 2008 and implementation beginning in 2009.

The specialist will work in the classroom along side colleagues to promote an enthusiasm and enjoyment of maths to help children, other teachers and parents understand the relevance and opportunities that maths offers. Sir Peter believes the long term impact will be better results at GCSE, increased take-up of maths A Level and further maths related study and career choice.

It is planned that existing classroom teachers will take up the role of specialist maths teachers and do between one and three years training depending on their knowledge and experience. They will then be able to work independently towards a Masters level qualification in maths teaching.

Ed Balls welcomed Sir Peter's conclusion that the current maths curriculum in primary schools is fit for purpose, well balanced and should continue in current form.

Commenting on the review, Sir Jim Rose, who is carrying out a review of the primary curriculum, said:

"The Review provided ample evidence to show, yet again, that the quality of teaching and how well children learn are inseparable; hence our emphasis on securing excellent teaching of the subject. Where the teaching was of this quality, children's good progress in, and enthusiasm for mathematics were all too obvious."

Backing the report, TV presenter Carol Vorderman, said:

"I am thrilled that at long last an official body is raising the spectre of our negative cultural attitude to maths, particularly in the media.

"Whether you like it or not, and no matter what the gossip or trivia or fashion of the day may be, the basis of our global future is one built on science and computing and manufacturing and hard business, and the language they all use is mathematics. Unless our number skills improve, by the time our children are tax paying adults, we will have been left behind."

7,5 Prozent für feste und freie Journalisten gefordert - dju in ver.di will bessere Arbeitsbedingungen in Redaktionen

7,5 Prozent für feste und freie Journalisten gefordert - dju in ver.di will bessere Arbeitsbedingungen in Redaktionen

Berlin. (red) 17.06.2008. Die Deutsche Journalistinnen- und Journalisten-Union (dju) in ver.di hat die Tageszeitungsverleger zum schnellst möglichen Beginn von
Tarifverhandlungen für die freien und fest angestellten Journalisten an Tageszeitungen aufgefordert. Vorausgegangen war gestern (16.6.) die Kündigung des Manteltarifvertrags für Tageszeitungsredakteurinnen und -redakteure durch den Bundesverband Deutscher Zeitungsverleger (BDZV) zum Jahresende. Der Gehaltstarifvertrag ist bereits gekündigt und läuft zum 31. Juli aus. "Die Gewerkschaften fordern von den Verlegern 7,5 Prozent mehr Gehalt für die fest angestellten und 7,5 Prozent mehr Honorar für die freien Journalisten", erklärte
ver.di-Verhandlungsführer Frank Werneke.

"Vor dem Hintergrund der wirtschaftlichen Erholung der Zeitungsbranche und der niedrigen Tarifabschlüsse der letzten Jahre sind spürbare Gehaltserhöhungen unbedingt notwendig. Eine Verschlechterung des Manteltarifvertrages ist unnötig und wird von
uns nicht akzeptiert werden", so Werneke weiter. Die dju in ver.di will bessere Arbeitsbedingungen in den Redaktionen durchsetzen. "Die ständig zunehmende Arbeitsverdichtung in den Redaktionen muss genauso Thema am Verhandlungstisch mit den Verlegern sein wie die überfällige Einbeziehung der Onliner in den Tarifvertrag", forderte Werneke.

Press notice from Sir John Baker CBE - Review of MPs' pay and pensions by Sir John Baker

Press notice from Sir John Baker CBE - Review of MPs' pay and pensions by Sir John Baker

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- The Government has today published Sir John Baker's Report on MPs' Pay and Pensions which he submitted to the Government on 30 May.

In January 2008 the Prime Minister asked Sir John to examine options and make recommendations for a mechanism for independently determining the pay and pensions of MPs which does not involve MPs voting on their own pay. (The terms of reference for the review are attached.)

Sir John said: "MPs' pay is a highly sensitive and emotive issue. MPs are likely to be criticised in the media, often unfairly, when they propose or vote to accept pay increases for themselves. But if they forgo those increases their pay falls further and further behind, necessitating large catch-ups which can then seem even more contentious, particularly when Government is pursuing a rigorous public sector pay policy. This argues for taking decisions on MPs' pay and pensions out of the hands of MPs and Government alike. I believe there is now a real desire on the part of most MPs and the Government for an independent and objective means of determining MPs' pay. I believe this should also extend to their allowances.

"I have therefore made three key recommendations: an Independent Body to review MPs' pay, pensions and allowances once a Parliament to keep them in line with the market; a fair mechanism for uprating MPs' pay each year, without a vote, between reviews; and a modest, staged increase to MPs' salaries to bring them closer in line with those of other public sector workers doing similarly important jobs. The evidence shows that MPs are paid about 10 per cent less than the average for similarly weighted public sector jobs."

Sir John's report recommends that MPs' pay be uprated annually by the Public Sector Average Earnings Index published by the Office for National Statistics.

He said: "The Public Sector Average Earnings Index meets all the criteria I have set out in my report. It is easily understood, independent, authoritative, transparent, linked to the public sector and sustainable over a number of Parliaments.

"Linking MPs' pay to this index will give MPs the same percentage increase in earnings as the average public sector worker received in the previous year. So this mechanism will provide an annual catch-up for MPs. Their pay increases will keep pace with those of average public sector workers and cannot run ahead of them."

Independent Body

Sir John has recommended that the current Senior Salaries Review Body should extend its role and become the Independent Body which oversees and determines MPs' pay. The Body should conduct reviews every four years or so, as far as possible in the first year of a Parliament, or when requested by the Speaker. The purpose of such reviews would be to check that MPs' pay was still at a level to ensure that good quality candidates were willing to serve as MPs, and to check that the uprating mechanism was working properly. The Body's findings should be applied automatically, with no involvement of Government or MPs themselves.

Pay for 2008-09 to 2010-11

The Senior Salaries Review Body submitted a substantial report on parliamentary pay, pensions and allowances in July 20071. On the basis of all the evidence available to it, including a job evaluation of the work of MPs, the Body recommended three annual increases of £650 for MPs in addition to normal uprating, to move their total remuneration closer to the average of the public sector comparators identified by the job evaluation exercise.

Sir John's report endorses the Senior Salaries Review Body proposal and recommends that the MPs' salary with effect from 1 April 2008 should be £64,634 (i.e. the current salary of £61,820 uprated by the Public Sector Average Earnings Index figure for January 2008 of 3.5% plus the £650 staged increase recommended by the Review Body) and that the salary should then increase by the increase in the index plus £650 on 1 April 2009 and again on 1 April 2010. Thereafter MPs' salaries will be uprated by the increase in the PSAEI.

MPs' Pensions

Sir John's report notes that the SSRB made recommendations on MPs' pensions, including a cap of 20 per cent of the pay bill on the underlying Exchequer contribution, that were accepted in principle by the Government and MPs in January. Sir John recommends that the Independent Body should continue to consider MPs' pension arrangements since they are an important part of MPs' total reward and therefore need to be considered together with pay. The Independent Body's recommendations on pensions cannot be applied automatically, unlike those for pay, because the pension fund is administered by the Government and the fund Trustees. Nevertheless, those recommendations should be regarded as compelling in principle.

MPs' expenses (allowances)

MPs' expenses (often referred to as allowances) were not part of Sir John's remit. The House of Commons' Members Estimate Committee is currently considering MPs' allowances and is expected to report very soon. Sir John's report acknowledges the current concerns about MPs' expenses and therefore recommends that the Independent Body should oversee expenses as well as pay and pensions in order to avoid the risk of future trade off and confusion between pay and expenses.

Other options

Although Sir John is clear about his preferred way forward, he has noted the strong concerns expressed by Government that the public will misunderstand and pay negotiators may seek to misuse the difference between earnings and settlements. Most workers' receive increments, performance related payments or movement up a pay spine which have the result that, on average, their earnings increase by some 1 to 2 per cent more each year than the 'headline' pay settlement figure. MPs are a special case since all those without additional responsibilities (nearly three quarters of all MPs) are paid the same spot rate with no possibility for pay progression. For a typical worker, a settlement of, say, 2 per cent will result in an earnings increase of 3 to 4 per cent after increments, performance related pay etc. But for MPs, a settlement of 2 per cent means an earnings increase of 2 per cent.

Sir John therefore recommends increasing MPs' pay each year by the same percentage as the increase in average public sector earnings, so that MPs keep in step with the rest of the public sector. However, he recognises that this approach may be perceived as having presentational disadvantages because the figure for the previous year's earnings increase will appear higher than the current year's public sector pay settlements. Sir John therefore offers two other options for MPs and the Government to consider. One would be for the SSRB to fix predetermined annual pay increases for MPs' broadly in line with public sector settlements for the life of a Parliament. The SSRB would then carry out a review, and most probably award a significantly larger catch-up increase, in the first year of each new Parliament.

The other option, which would need more work and consultation to develop, would be to give MPs some form of pay progression, akin to the increments or performance related pay that some other workers enjoy. For example, an MP might receive an additional pay increase each time he or she is re-elected at a General Election.

Terms of Reference

The terms of reference for Sir John Baker's review were announced by the Leader of the House of Commons, the Rt Hon Harriet Harman MP, in a Written Ministerial Statement on 23 January 2008. They are:

* to examine options and make recommendations for a mechanism for independently determining the pay and pensions of MPs which does not involve MPs voting on their own pay; the appropriate comparator; and the frequency with which reviews of the use of the comparator take place;

* to ensure that the independent mechanism takes account of the Government's policy on public sector pay and its target for inflation;

* to have regard to the need for any independent mechanism to maintain the support and trust of the public and Members of Parliament.

The review should also seek to:

* examine comparable international mechanisms and the resulting experience;

* address the constitutional framework alongside legal and legislative considerations;

* consider the range of evidence that should be considered by the recommended independent mechanism in determining an appropriate comparator;

* consider the membership and remit of any Independent Body that may be part of the pay setting process;

* give due consideration to consistency with other public service wage setting mechanisms and wage settlements across the public service;

* outline a recommended timetable for transition to any new system; and

* report by end May 2008.

Pro-life Groups to Announce Plans and Schedule for Major Pro-life Witness at the Democratic National Convention in Denver this August

Pro-life Groups to Announce Plans and Schedule for Major Pro-life Witness at the Democratic National Convention in Denver this August

DENVER, June 17 /Christian Newswire/ -- The organizations will hold a news conference on Wednesday, June 18, at 11:00 A.M. in front of the entrance to the Pepsi Center in downtown Denver to discuss in detail their plans for the DNC.

The name of the event is called "A Prayer for Change," and the press can go to for more information.

The Christian Defense Coalition, Survivors, Operation Rescue and other pro-life groups plan to have a series of prayer vigils, rallies, demonstrations, concerts and public events at the DNC to expose the radical pro-abortion of Senator Barack Obama at the Democratic Party.

The pro-life organizations will be praying and calling for Senator Obama and the Democratic Party to end this tragic war against America's children which has resulted in over 50,000,000 abortions.

Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Washington, D.C. based Christian Defense Coalition, states, "We are coming to Denver to pray and seek God to end this tragic taking of innocent life through abortion. We will also be peacefully and prayerfully on the streets of Denver to expose the radical pro-abortion policies of Senator Obama and the Democratic Party.

"Senator Obama talks about social justice and reaching out to the poor. Yet he supports abortion policies that crush human rights and promote violence and despair. Simply stated, if Barack Obama were elected this Fall he would be the most radical pro-abortion President in American history. His views on abortion are radical and extremist and outside of the mainstream of what most Americans believe."

Danielle White Versluys, Special Events Director for Survivors, adds, "Senator Obama talks about change and bringing hope to America yet clings to and embraces abortion policies that most Americans find appalling. As a leader of this emerging generation, I am deeply troubled that Senator Obama continues to support the barbaric procedure of Partial-birth abortion and wants to expand abortion rights through the Freedom of Choice Act.

"This generation is coming to Denver to pray and cry out for change and believe that we will one day see a nation where all human life is treated with dignity and respect."

For more information or interviews call:

Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney at 540.538.4741

Danielle White Versluys at 909.213.5339

Studiengebühren: Wer zuletzt lacht, lacht am besten

Studiengebühren: Wer zuletzt lacht, lacht am besten

Berlin. (red). 17. Juni 2008. "Wer zuletzt lacht, lacht am besten. Hessen zeigt, dass sich der Kampf gegen das Bezahlstudium lohnt. Roland Koch kann jetzt die Abschaffung der Studiengebühren in Hessen nicht länger mit durchsichtigen Tricks blockieren", kommentiert Nele Hirsch das Ende der Studiengebühren in Hessen. Die bildungspolitische Sprecherin der Fraktion DIE LINKE weiter:

"Ohne den unermüdlichen Kampf von Studierenden, Gewerkschaften und allen Studiengebührengegnerinnen und Studiengegnern wäre dieser Erfolg undenkbar. Sie hatten mit Demonstrationen, Protesten und Blockaden immer wieder das Recht auf freie Bildung gefordert. Heute können sie ihren Erfolg feiern.

DIE LINKE kämpft für ein bundesweites Gebührenverbot. Die bundesweite Gebührenfreiheit wäre ein Meilenstein auf dem Weg zur sogenannten Bildungsrepublik Deutschland.

Studiengebühren verschärfen die soziale Schieflage an Hochschulen, denn nur Kinder reicher Eltern werden durch die Campusmaut nicht vom Studium abgeschreckt.

DIE LINKE setzt sich dafür ein, dass Hessen kein Einzelfall bleibt. Andere Bundesländer müssen folgen."

Innenminister Bruch bewilligte 29,6 Millionen Euro für kommunale Investitionen

Kommunen/ Investitionsstock:

Innenminister Bruch bewilligte 29,6 Millionen Euro für kommunale Investitionen

Mainz. (red). 17. Juni 2008. In diesen Wochen erhalten viele Städte und Gemeinden in Rheinland-Pfalz erfreuliche Post von Innenminister Karl Peter Bruch, der über die diesjährigen Zuwendungen aus dem Investitionsstock des Landes entschieden hat. „Mit 29,6 Millionen Euro können wir insgesamt 283 Vorhaben im Land unterstützen“, stellte Bruch fest. Die zuwendungsfähigen Kosten für die geförderten Projekte beliefen sich auf 80,9 Millionen Euro.

„Dieses gewaltige Volumen macht deutlich, welch wichtige Impulse für Handwerk und Gewerbe, und damit für den Bestand und die Schaffung von Arbeitsplätzen, von den Kommunen ausgehen“, so Bruch. Die Sanierung der öffentlichen Einrichtungen und der Ausbau von Ortsstraßen seien typische Fälle. „Der Investitionsstock ist ein wichtiger Motor für die regionale Bauwirtschaft. Das tatsächlich ausgelöste Investitionsvolumen übertrifft das eingesetzte Fördervolumen regelmäßig um das Achtfache. Diese beschäftigungswirksamen Ausgaben der öffentlichen Hand haben für die mittelständische Wirtschaft und das Handwerk große Bedeutung“, unterstrich der Minister.

Bei der Entscheidung über die Anträge seien Fragen der Wichtigkeit der einzelnen Maßnahmen, der wirtschaftlichen Auswirkungen, der finanziellen Leistungsfähigkeit der jeweiligen Träger und der strukturellen Besonderheiten in den Regionen gegeneinander abzuwägen gewesen. Daraufhin sei die ausgewogene Verteilung auf die kommunalen Gebietskörperschaften erfolgt.

Die meisten Infrastruktureinrichtungen von Gemeinden wie Stadthallen, Dorfgemeinschaftshäuser, Bürgerhäuser sowie Ausbau- und Erschließungsmaßnahmen hätten in der Vergangenheit nicht ohne die Hilfe des Investitionsstocks verwirklicht werden können. „Deshalb freue ich mich, dass trotz der äußerst angespannten Haushaltssituation der Gemeinden und Gemeindeverbände das Förderprogramm in 2008 auf hohem Niveau fortgeführt werden kann“, so Bruch. Dies sichere nicht nur die Investitionsfähigkeit der Kommunen, sondern führe auch zur Verbesserung der regionalen Wirtschaftsstruktur.

EURO 2008 - Bundesinnenminister Schäuble gratuliert der deutschen Elf!

EURO 2008 - Bundesinnenminister Schäuble gratuliert der deutschen Elf!

Berlin. (red). 17. Juni 2008. Bundesinnenminister Schäuble gratuliert der deutschen Fußball-Elf zu ihrem Sieg gegen die österreichische Mannschaft: "Die deutsche Auswahl hat gestern Teamgeist und kämpferischen Einsatz gezeigt. Ich hoffe, dass die Spieler diese Eigenschaften auch im Viertelfinale zeigen werden".

Der Minister hatte ein 2.0 als Tipp abgegeben.

"Die deutsche Mannschaft hat sich stets als Turniermannschaft erwiesen und in den Vorbereitungsspielen ihre aufsteigende Form gezeigt. Ich hoffe, dass die deutsche Elf ähnlich erfolgreich wie bei der WM 2006 spielen wird."

Evelyne Gebhardt vorn auf die SPD-Europaliste

Evelyne Gebhardt vorn auf die SPD-Europaliste

Berlin. (red). 17. Juni 2008. Zur Aufstellung der Bundesliste der SPD zur Europawahl 2009 fordern die Delegierten der ASF-Bundeskonferenz in Kassel:

"Die Europaabgeordnete Evelyne Gebhardt soll nach dem Willen der SPD-Frauen mit dem sozialdemokratischen Fraktionsvorsitzenden im Europäischen Parlament, Martin Schulz, die SPD-Bundesliste zur Europawahl 2009 anführen. Die Bundeskonferenz der Arbeitsgemeinschaft Sozialdemokratischer Frauen (ASF) forderte am Wochenende in Kassel für die stellvertretende ASF-Bundesvorsitzende Evelyne Gebhardt Platz 2 hinter dem Spitzenkandidaten Schulz.

In der Begründung heißt es, Platz 2 der SPD-Europaliste müsse eine Frau einnehmen, die uneingeschränkt für das Ziel „Europa – sozial und solidarisch“ stehe und zugleich die Zustimmung der breitesten Wählerschichten finde.

Die ASF-Bundesvorsitzende Elke Ferner, die auch Mitglied des SPD-Parteivorstands ist: „Beide Voraussetzungen erfüllt Evelyne Gebhardt in herausragender Weise.“

Evelyne Gebhardt hat als federführende Berichterstatterin die europäische Dienstleistungsrichtlinie im Europäischen Parlament durchgesetzt, die Dienstleistungen im Binnenmarkt so freizügig macht wie Waren und Geld, aber gleichzeitig die Interessen der Arbeitnehmerinnen und Arbeitnehmer schützt.

Die Abgeordnete wurde zweimal zur Europäerin des Jahres gewählt und in die Liste der wichtigsten Deutschen in Brüssel aufgenommen. Im Jahr 2007 wurde sie in eine Beratergruppe des französischen Präsidenten Nicolas Sarkozy berufen, um ihre Erfahrungen beim Ausgleich wirtschaftlicher und sozialer Interessen einzubringen."

Schäffler: Landesbankenkrise als Chance nutzen

Schäffler: Landesbankenkrise als Chance nutzen

Berlin. (red). 17. Juni 2008. Zu den Empfehlungen des Sachverständigenrats für den öffentlichen Bankensektor erklärt der Finanzexperte der FDP-Bundestagsfraktion Frank Schäffler:

"Die Bundesregierung muss endlich eine aktive Rolle bei der notwendigen Veränderung des öffentlichen Bankenwesens übernehmen. Die Vorschläge der Wirtschaftsweisen dürfen nicht ignoriert werden. Die Landesbanken sind das Systemrisiko im deutschen Finanzsystem. Die enge Verbundenheit mit den Sparkassen bringt auch diese zunehmend in Schwierigkeiten.
Der Staat ist als Banker unfähig und nicht erforderlich. Dies haben die Wirtschaftsweisen auch bei den Sparkassen erkannt. Deren Umwandlung in Aktiengesellschaften muss die Bundesregierung durch eine Änderung des Kreditwesengesetzes ermöglichen. Das wäre nicht der Untergang des Abendlandes, sondern ein Aufbruch zu neuen Ufern."

Companies fined £40,000 after worker suffers serious burns in Greenwich factory incident

Companies fined £40,000 after worker suffers serious burns in Greenwich factory incident

LONDON. June 17, 2008/ -- The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is warning companies to ensure maintenance work is carried out safely after a welder suffered serious burns in an incident at the factory formerly operated by Tate & Lyle UK Ltd, now Syral UK Ltd, at Tunnel Avenue, Greenwich, on 12 May 2005.

HSE inspector Paul Hems said: "The two companies involved in this incident failed to provide a safe system of work during the maintenance operations. This led to the hospitalisation of two workers, and the incident could easily have injured more. Multiple failings in the planning and control of the maintenance work by Tate & Lyle led to an avoidable incident taking place. Brewchem International Ltd, who provided the personnel carrying out much of the work, had inadequate arrangements in place to ensure operations directly managed by Tate & Lyle were carried out safely."

The incident occurred during cleaning and maintenance work on evaporator plant, which concentrates liquids by boiling off water. Brewchem International Ltd, a company that installs and maintains pipework systems, was contracted by Tate & Lyle UK Ltd to open up the evaporators at the site for high-pressure jet cleaning.

During the process of opening up one of the evaporators, there was an uncontrolled release of large quantities of hot liquid, which hit Terry Young, a welder sub-contracted to Brewchem, and four of his colleagues.

After being rushed to an emergency shower, Mr Young was airlifted to hospital where he was kept for seven days and treated for serious burns to his face, neck and arms. Another Brewchem worker was also taken to hospital for treatment for slight burns and shock. The other three workers were uninjured.

At City of London Magistrates' Court on Friday 13 June, Syral UK Ltd, a food processing company, pleaded guilty of breaching Section 2 (1) and Section 3 (1) of the Heath and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. They were fined a total of £30,000, (£15,000 for each breach) and costs of £6,500. Brewchem International Ltd pleaded guilty to a breach of Section 3 (1) of the Heath and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974. They were fined £10,000 with costs of £2,000.