BNFL’s tougher new work culture wins HSE’s praise

first_img Previous Article Next Article BNFL’s efforts to improve work culture and safety atSellafield nuclear plant over the past year have been acknowledged in an HSEreport released last week.Sellafield’s HR team have driven forward a tough new workculture seeking to instill self-discipline and responsibility among the8,000-strong workforce.The “zero tolerance” approach to wilful breaches of safetywas a response to three critical HSE reports in February 2000, and a media scandalabout the falsification of safety data. Staffing shortages and poor managementwere among the criticisms. Last summer BNFL, in co-operation with the unions, developednew standards and expectations for its staff. They came into force on 1 August.Peter Woolley, Sellafield’s head of HR and public affairs,said, “We had to get the employees to understand that there were basicstandards of behaviour that would have to be met.”The standards included adhering to 20mph limits at the site,the proper use of access passes and consuming food in the right areas. In theensuing six months, 20 people were dismissed for non-compliance. But Woolley admits that while the standards have gone a longway to improving quality and safety standards at Sellafield, there has been aprice to pay.He said, “It is medicine that needed to be taken but it hasnot been very palatable. Morale is not high.”The HR team recruited 400 additional staff and hascontributed to significant management restructuring. It is now targeting morale.By Mike Broad Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos. BNFL’s tougher new work culture wins HSE’s praiseOn 27 Feb 2001 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

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APS 2013 IPC Takes Place in Garmisch, Germany

first_img Training & Education Back to overview,Home naval-today APS 2013 IPC Takes Place in Garmisch, Germany View post tag: Navy April 9, 2012 View post tag: Naval View post tag: 2013 View post tag: APS View post tag: takes View post tag: Germanycenter_img View post tag: News by topic View post tag: place The Africa Partnership Station (APS) 2013 Initial Planning Conference (IPC) took place in Garmisch, Germany, March 28-30.The three-day conference provided a venue for participating partner nations from Africa, Australia, Europe and North America to meet and continue the dialogue for building future APS plans, goals and objectives.This year’s main focus for APS was moving from a training-intensive program to providing more real-world maritime operations.James Hart, Deputy Director for Programs at U.S. Africa Command, provided opening remarks for the conference.“APS is larger than just a program. It’s a maritime capacity-building continuum with the goal of enabling our African partners to provide maritime security for peace and stability,” said Hart.During his remarks, Hart spoke of the goals and objectives for APS 2013.“How do we take APS to the next level? By moving away from a training-intensive program and organize [sic] APS efforts through emphasizing hands-on training and real-world operations.”Currently, the primary operational elements of APS include the Africa Maritime Law Enforcement Program (AMLEP), a joint mission conducted by Naval Forces Africa, U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area, and African navies and coast guards; maritime passing exercises; and the multi-lateral “Express” series of exercises, including Obangame Express, Saharan Express, Phoenix Express and Cutlass Express.During the conference, representatives from a few of the attending African partner nations had an opportunity to brief the status of their respective nation’s maritime environment as well as progress that has been made over the past five years due to APS.Nations who provided country briefs included Cameroon, The Gambia, Mauritania, Morocco, Mozambique and Sao Tome Principe.Lt. Simon P. Mendy, Officer in Charge of Administration, Logistics, Search and Rescue and Maritime Interdiction for The Gambia, opened his brief with a quote from a U.S. Navy historical figure, Rear Adm. Alfred Thayer Mahan, then went on to describe the positive impact APS has had on his country’s maritime domain awareness.“We are getting there, with bi-lateral engagements supported by Africa Partnership Station – with our partners,” said Mendy.Rear Adm. Kenneth “K.J.” Norton, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategy, Resources and Plans, provided closing remarks focusing on the key to the successes APS has experienced in themaritime domain environment. “APS is a shared endeavor, and for APS to be successful, ships are the platform of choice,” said Norton. “But I’m not talking about grey hulls here; I’m talking about partnerships. I’m talking about relationships. And most of all, I’m talking about friendships. Those are the ships that will ensure the continued success of APS.”Partner nations who attended the APS 2013 IPC included Australia, Belgium, Benin, Cameroon, Canada, Djibouti, Finland, France, Gabon, The Gambia, Ghana, Italy, Kenya, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Nigeria, Republic of Congo, Sao Tome Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Spain, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda and United States of America.APS is an international security cooperation initiative facilitated by Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa, aimed at strengthening global maritime partnerships through training and collaborative activities in order to improve maritime safety and security in Africa.[mappress]Naval Today Staff , April 09, 2012; Image: marine APS 2013 IPC Takes Place in Garmisch, Germany View post tag: Garmisch View post tag: IPC Share this articlelast_img read more

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Oxford imam: “No Muslim terrorism in the UK before Iraq”

first_imgAn Oxford imam has made claims in an interview with rt.com that there was no Islamic terrorism in the UK before Iraq.Dr Taj Hargey was speaking in the aftermath of the Woolwich killing of Drummer Lee Rigby. The British soldier was attacked by men who are believed to be British-born Muslim converts. In a camera-phone video, one of the men claimed the attack was a response to the way “Muslims are dying by British soldiers every day”.Dr Hargey condemned the murder in the strongest possible terms, but argued that there was “a linkage” between the events in Woolwich and British foreign policy.The imam of the Oxford Islamic Congregation, claimed that “there was no Muslim terrorism in the United Kingdom until Blair went illegally into Iraq”.Prime Minister David Cameron said in a media address outside Downing Street that the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby last week “sickened us all” and that the attacks were a “betrayal of Islam… that gives so much to our country.”Cameron continued, “There is absolutely no justification for these acts and the fault for them lies solely and purely with the sickening individuals that carried out this attack”.Dr Taj Hargey, who has provoked controversy for inviting the first ever woman to lead and preach at Friday prayers in Britain, and for marrying Islamic women to non-Islamic men, called for the Muslim community in the UK to confront the radical and extremist minority. He said, “Their [extremist] ideology and philosophy must be demolished”.He also claimed that that Islam is a religion of peace: “You don’t kill someone in the name of God, Islam condemns that… it’s pure blasphemy”.Zain Iqbal, a first year student at Brasenose College and a member of the Oxford University Islamic society told Cherwell that “under no circumstances do grievances justify bringing terror to our streets.”He continued, “However, labeling terrorism as Islamic ventures into dangerous territory and is unjustified. Throughout history we have seen terrorism emanating from all quarters and we should remain acutely aware to not label entire communities.”last_img read more

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Student “asked to leave” after bringing her toddler to Oxford talk on “Women and leadership”

first_img“If you’re organizing an event after 5pm, especially if the event is about equality, women in the workplace, try and organize it in a child friendly place, or offer a crèche service for the event. We don’t stop being interested in the world just because we are parents.” “They pick a seat for us, the talk is about to start, and I’m so excited and relieved.” “Later on, the University of Oxford and Nuffield Department of Population Health will congratulate themselves on organising such an event and being at the forefront of a fight for equality. Reportedly, the “technical lady’s” reasoning was that MsKordala and her child were sat “right next to the video camera man.” However, sheallegedly offered to “go to the other side of the room so the camera doesn’tpick up [the toddler’s] babbling” and was told: “No, you need to leave thepremises.” In a post on Facebook, Ania Kordala stated how she had allegedlyemailed ahead to ask the organisers if she could bring her toddler, “putting therequest” in the ‘Special Requirements’ box available to those signing up. Theevent’s host, Professor Valerie Beral, directed through her Personal AssistantSarah Atkinson, responded: “Unfortunately, babies and toddlers can not attend.” Allegedly, Ms Kordala decided bring her child along anyway “tosee what they say at the door.” In a second Facebook post written shortly afterthe event, she said: “I was lucky to meet my college principal and ask her toback me up, which she did do so they let me in. The talk took place on Tuesday 26 March at the Sheldonian theatre. The speaker, Julia Gillard, was the first woman to take up the position of Prime Minister or Deputy Prime Minister in Australia. She served as Deputy from 2007 until 2010 and then as Prime Minister from 2010 to 2013. She reported that she had been refused entry.  I explained to Ania that I had no official role but that I would see what I could do.  Nuffield Department of Population Health, which is part ofthe University, organised the event. The full title of the event was: “Womenand leadership – fighting for an equal world.” Julia Gillard’s commitmentsinclude serving as a patron of CAMFED, the Campaign for Female Education. “It was not only rude, the message was – We’re ruining the event, our presence is a problem, and the sooner we disappear the better. “We encourage students and others with families to participate fully in events run by the Department. Principal at Green Templeton College, Professor Denise Lievesley, told Cherwell: Head of the Nuffield Department of Population Health RoryCollins told Cherwell: “A student brought her young child to thelecture held yesterday in the Sheldonian Theatre, and I personally ensured thatshe was allowed to bring the child into the building. It is definitely notappropriate that she was later asked to leave with her child. “Even when I was already in the corridor and nobody could hear my daughter, there were 3 or 4 people impatiently waiting until I gather my stuff and pointing me to the door. I had to remind them I had a buggy, go get it, (carry up the stairs with a toddler in one hand and buggy in the other) and then ask to leave via an accessible entrance and not the staircase. “The talk will be watched many times and probably also receive media coverage. But this is just one side of the story. Green Templeton College prides itself on supporting students with families, and it is especially inappropriate that this happened at a wonderful talk by Julia Gillard about significant gender inequalities which still exist in our societies.”  Ania Kordala said: “As we are walking out of the building I hear the room filling with applause as Julia Gillard enters the stage and starts talking. About women in leadership. About equal rights and opportunities. “I was so mad I was hardly talking, I was just pointing to the where the buggy was and where the accessible entrance was. “On arriving as a guest at the Sheldonian theatre to hear Julia Gillard I met one of the Green Templeton students, Ania Kordala, with her toddler.  Ms Kordala reported that after her toddler “babbled”, “alady from technical crew” approached her and told her she “needed to leave.” Accordingto the student, she left the room to talk to the woman, who then “would not lether back in”, and she was told “her friend could get her stuff [which was leftin the room where the talk was taking place].” Speaking exclusively to Cherwell Kordala added that “The fact that I was asked to leave is one thing. How it was dealt with is another. I spoke to Professor Rory Collins of the Nuffield Department of Population Health, asking if Ania and her child could be admitted.  He agreed wholeheartedly, and he and I went outside together to ensure that she was able to enter.  “In future, we will make sure that all staff working at our events are aware that families are welcome.” As far as I was aware this was satisfactory, so  I am very sad to learn that Ania was subsequently asked to leave.  I was unaware of this.  “I have been lucky to have a supportive PI, an amazing co supervisor, and a great family friendly group. I have attended lectures with my daughter before (one on Athena Swan in DPAG, but not only) and even a Christmas carols service in Keble College chapel. There had never been an issue until yesterday. She normally either sleeps through the event or plays with books. If she starts disrupting the event or cries, I leave. “The other side of the story is a student parent who wanted to be a part of the talk. Who literally fought her way into the building despite being told ‘no.’ Who made it inside and got kicked out almost immediately after. Who is outside the building while everyone else is inside.” The University, and event host Professor Valerie Beral have been contacted for comment.last_img read more

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New gluten-free bakery for Kingston-Upon-Thames

first_imgNewly-opened Glutopia Bakery in Kingston-Upon-Thames sells gluten-free and vegan cakes.Sara Osborne, owner and founder of Glutopia, said: “I wanted to offer the kind of selection in my bakery that means as a gluten-free customer you can have anything, rather than being the afterthought.”The soon-to-be-expanding vegan range includes a vegan red velvet cake, a lemon vegan loaf cake, and beetroot & chocolate brownies. Bespoke birthday and celebration cakes can be cooked to order, and each is personalised and tailored to dietary requirements.There are plans for a second bakery site in Soho, central London, as well as multiple sites across the capital, following that launch.last_img

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Farmington boards recommend $6.1 million municipal budget

first_imgFARMINGTON – The Board of Selectmen unanimously recommended a $6.1 million budget for the 2019-20 fiscal year at Thursday evening’s meeting, matching the recommendations of the Budget Committee. That budget will go before residents at the March town meeting.The $6,110,386 budget would represent an increase of 5.51 percent over the current fiscal year, an increase of $319,310. Increases include an extra $70,000 in fire hydrant fees, increases in health insurance costs and a 2.5 percent increase in wages for non-union personnel.It also includes roughly $18,000 for a number of outside agencies previously funded through the Franklin County budget process, ranging from Western Maine Community Action to Sexual Assault Prevention & Response Services to Franklin County Children’s Task Force. The $18,000 divided among the agencies represents Farmington’s previous contribution through the county process.Selectmen unanimously supported the budget, commending department heads for working to constrain increases. Chair Josh Bell, who noted that he had combed through the material to find potential reductions, said all the requests were reasonable.“Really, nobody is asking for anything crazy,” Bell said.Town Manager Richard Davis said that he was hopeful that rising revenue would help reduce the impact of the increase. The town took in an additional $100,000 in excise revenue beyond its projection this year. Additionally, Davis noted, three different bills are before the legislature to increase revenue sharing funds to municipalities.The impact on the tax rate won’t be known until after the county and school budgets are finalized, Davis said.The annual town meeting will be held on March 25 at the Farmington Community Center.last_img read more

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Holly Bowling’s New Album Reaches The Billboard Top 100 Charts

first_imgJust a few months ago, pianist Holly Bowling shared her latest creation: Better Left Unsung. Following in the footsteps of her debut Phish-themed release, Bowling’s second album interpreted the music of the Grateful Dead for solo piano compositions.Over the weekend, Bowling shared the news that Better Left Unsung had worked its way to the #25 spot on the Billboard Top 100 albums list for Classical music. Bowling’s approach to the music from the jam scene is inspired by the Classical genre, making her approach all the more unique within the jam music scene.Bowling posted the news to her Facebook page, as you can see below.Congratulations Holly! Read our review of the album, here.last_img

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A marriage of origami and robotics

Researchers at Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are learning to reshape the landscape of programmable matter by devising self-folding sheets that rely on the ancient art of origami.The research team demonstrated how a single thin sheet composed of interconnected triangular sections could transform itself into a boat or plane shape — without the help of skilled fingers. The findings were published in the online Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) on Monday (June 28).The lead authors are Robert Wood, associate professor of electrical engineering at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and a core faculty member of the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, and Daniela Rus, a professor in the electrical engineering and computer science department at MIT and co-director of the CSAIL Center for Robotics. Using a concept called programmable matter by folding, the researchers envision creating “smart” cups that could adjust based upon the amount of liquid needed, or even a “Swiss army knife” that could form into tools ranging from wrenches to tripods.“The process begins when we first create an algorithm for folding,” said Wood. “Similar to a set of instructions in an origami book, we determine, based upon the desired end shapes, where to crease the sheet.”The sheet, a thin composite of rigid tiles and elastomer joints (with elastic polymers), is studded with thin foil actuators (motorized switches) and flexible electronics. The demonstration material contains 25 actuators, divided into five groupings. A shape is produced by triggering the proper actuator groups in sequence.To initiate the on-demand folding, the team devised a series of stickers, thin materials that contain the circuitry able to prompt the actuators to make the folds. This can be done without a user having to access a computer, reducing “programming” to merely placing the stickers in the appropriate places. When the sheet receives the proper jolt of current, it begins to fold, staying in place thanks to magnetic closures.“Smart sheets are origami robots that will make any shape on demand for their user,” said Rus. “A big achievement was discovering the theoretical foundations and universality of folding and fold planning, which provide the brain and the decision-making system for the smart sheet.”The fancy folding techniques were inspired in part by the work of co-author Erik Demaine, an associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science at MIT, and one of the world’s most recognized experts on computational origami.While the Harvard and MIT engineers only demonstrated two simple shapes, the proof of concept holds promise. The long-term aim is to make programmable matter more robust and practical, leading to materials that can perform multiple tasks, for instance, an entire dining utensil set derived from one piece of foldable material.“The shape-shifting sheets demonstrate an end-to-end process that is a first step toward making everyday objects whose mechanical properties can be programmed,” said Wood.Wood and Rus’ co-authors include Elliot Hawkes and Hiroto Tanaka, both at Harvard, and Byoung Kwon An, Nadia Benbernou, Sangbae Kim, and Erik Demaine, all at MIT.The research received funding from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).To view a video of the way the robotic origami works, follow this link. read more

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Changes to printing policy spark conversation

first_imgNotre Dame’s Office of Information Technologies (OIT) overhauled the University’s printing system during the summer, implementing changes that include consolidating campus printers to two queues and changing students’ printing allotments to a point-based system.Vice president for information technology Ron Kraemer, who also serves as chief information and digital officer, said the purpose of the changes was to simplify printing on campus and reduce both waste and printing costs.“The University and the OIT know that students need to print, and we want to deliver easy and cost-effective printing solutions for campus while still maintaining a high level of quality,” Kraemer said.In previous years, students would send printing jobs from their computers to one of several queues depending on their location. Now, students can send printing jobs to every black-and-white printer or every color printer on campus at once, Kraemer said.In addition, students’ standard printing quotas, or the amount each student is allowed to print from campus printers, switched from a dollar amount to a point system. According to the OIT website, undergraduate students receive a quota of 1,000 points per semester. Each single- or double-sided black-and-white page costs two points, and each color page costs 12 points. Graduate students receive 3,500 points per year, and law students receive 4,250.Kraemer said points not used during the fall semester roll over to the spring semester, but points left over at the end of the year do not roll over to subsequent years, a change from the previous policy. He said students can increase their quotas by paying $3 for 100 points.Kraemer said the point system would be easier to use than a dollar amount, and the new standard quota, although a decrease from the former yearly allotment, reflected the number of pages students typically print.“The PrintND system shows that more than 90 percent of students print within 2,000 points each academic year,” Kraemer said.Students have expressed concern that the new standard quota will not allow them to print as often as they need. Sophomore Jackie Winsch said materials for classes and projects have used a significant amount of her points.“I was a week into school, and I was already a quarter of the way down, and then we did this half-hour presentation in one of my classes the other day, and we had to print a colored paper front and back, and it was like 50 points,” Winsch said. “It’s a really drastic change from having so much extra to being worried about running out.”Winsch said the change has prompted her to exercise caution with the number of pages she prints.“I don’t just print anything,” she said. “I have to make sure it’s double-sided, and [think], do I really need this? And I print four on a page — it’s really hard to read, but I get the most out of it.”Freshman Olivia Colon said the point system was easy to understand, but she worried about the allotment of pages. Her biology class requires her to print out PowerPoint slides and pre-lab information.“I feel like it’s been two weeks, and I’m already running out of points,” Colon said. “The classes that I have to take require me to print out a lot of stuff from Sakai and whatnot, and I just feel like 1,000 [points] isn’t enough. It may seem like a lot, but it’s not. It goes fast.”In addition to students being able to pay for increased allotments, professors also can use department funds to increase printing quotas for their classes or for individual students, according to the OIT website.Dan Graff, director of undergraduate studies of the department of history, said he often requires students in his classes to print out materials and bring them to class. He said his students have expressed concerns about using up their quotas in previous years but never this early in the semester.“Students might be getting mixed messages, that OIT suggests that they should be printing less,” Graff said. “. . . We don’t want you to be printing less because we want our classrooms to be technology-free spaces where there’s no distractions from email and Facebook and those kinds of things, so we want them to have stuff printed out.”Kraemer said OIT is open to input from students. At the beginning of the semester, printing a single-sided page cost twice as many points as printing a double-sided page, but OIT reduced the price of single-sided pages this week after receiving feedback from student government. Kraemer said the point allotment on a per-semester basis also leaves open the possibility for future changes.“The OIT opted to divide the quota for undergraduates between the fall and spring semester so that if students need us to make adjustments, we can make them at the winter break,” Kraemer said.Kraemer said OIT consulted student government and other campus organizations before implementing printing policy changes. Junior Shuyang Li, director of student government’s department of campus technology, said his division recommended simplifying printing quotas last spring and this semester supported the reduction in the price of printing a one-sided sheet.Li said student government also was working with OIT to communicate the changes to students. He said OIT technology liaisons in each residence hall explained the quota system to incoming freshmen during orientation, but student government and OIT were still looking for ways to reach upperclassmen.Li said student government was gathering feedback on the new system from Student Senate members and dorm technology liaisons.“We’re trying to get a compiled opinion on the changes, and we’re going to pose that to OIT and try to . . . make sure that the printing quota system is what students want,” he said.Tags: OIT, print quota, Printing, printing quotalast_img read more

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Martin McDonagh’s Hangmen Will Transfer to the West End

first_imgAs we predicted back in July, Martin McDonagh’s Hangmen will transfer to the West End from the Royal Court Theatre. Directed by Matthew Dunster and starring original cast members David Morrissey and Johnny Flynn, the production will play a limited engagement December 1 through March 5, 2016. Opening night is set for December 7 at the Wyndham’s Theatre.In his small pub in Oldham, Harry is something of a local celebrity. But what’s the second-best hangman in England to do on the day they’ve abolished hanging? Amongst the cub reporters and sycophantic pub regulars dying to hear Harry’s reaction to the news, a peculiar stranger lurks, with a very different motive for his visit.Morrissey’s stage credits include In a Dark House, Macbeth and Peer Gynt. On screen he has been seen in The Driver, Red Riding, Field of Blood, South Riding, The Walking Dead, Richard II, Sleepyhead, Scaredy Cat, Hilary & Jackie and Captain Correlli’s Mandolin.Flynn’s theater resume includes Jerusalem, The Low Road, The Heretic, Richard III and Twelfth Night. His film and TV credits include Small Holding, Love is Thicker than Water, Clouds of Sils Maria, A Devotee of Art, Brotherhood and Detectorists. View Commentslast_img read more

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