July 5th, 2019

Commonwealth Bank of Australia CEO apologies for financial planning scandal

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Commonwealth Bank of Australia CEO apologies for financial planning scandal

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Ian Narev, the CEO of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, this morning “unreservedly” apologised to clients who lost money in a scandal involving the bank’s financial planning services arm.

Last week, a Senate enquiry found financial advisers from the Commonwealth Bank had made high-risk investments of clients’ money without the clients’ permission, resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars lost. The Senate enquiry called for a Royal Commission into the bank, and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

Mr Narev stated the bank’s performance in providing financial advice was “unacceptable”, and the bank was launching a scheme to compensate clients who lost money due to the planners’ actions.

In a statement Mr Narev said, “Poor advice provided by some of our advisers between 2003 and 2012 caused financial loss and distress and I am truly sorry for that. […] There have been changes in management, structure and culture. We have also invested in new systems, implemented new processes, enhanced adviser supervision and improved training.”

An investigation by Fairfax Media instigated the Senate inquiry into the Commonwealth Bank’s financial planning division and ASIC.

Whistleblower Jeff Morris, who reported the misconduct of the bank to ASIC six years ago, said in an article for The Sydney Morning Herald that neither the bank nor ASIC should be in control of the compensation program.

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June 25th, 2019

Global study dispels some myths about sexual behaviour

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Global study dispels some myths about sexual behaviour

Wednesday, November 1, 2006

The first comprehensive global study of sexual behaviour, published today as part of The Lancet’s Sexual and Reproductive Health Online Series, found that people aren’t losing their virginity at ever younger ages, married people have the most sex, and there is no firm link between promiscuity and sexually transmitted diseases.

Experts say data gleaned from the study will be useful not only in dispelling popular myths about sexual behaviour, but in shaping policies that will help improve sexual health across the world. Researchers looked at previously published studies on sexual behaviour in the last decade.

Professor Kaye Wellings, of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicines, and her colleagues analysed data on sexual behaviour in the last decade from 59 countries.

The report also shows no support for the common notion that there is a culture of multiple sexual partners in countries with poor sexual health. Multiple sexual partners, it turns out, are more common in industrialised than in developing nations.

The study also found that contrary to popular belief, sexual activity is not starting earlier. Nearly everywhere, men and women have their first sexual experiences in their late teens; from 15 to 19 years old — with generally younger ages for women than for men, especially in developing countries.

“A single woman is more able to negotiate safe sex in certain circumstances than a married woman,” said Paul van Look, director of Reproductive Health and Research at the World Health Organisation, who was unconnected to the study and points out that “married women in Africa and Asia are often threatened by unfaithful husbands who frequent prostitutes”.

There is much greater equality between women and men with regard to the number of sexual partners in rich countries than in poor countries, the study found. This imbalance has significant public health implications. Because of the diversity of sexual habits worldwide, Wellings warns that no single approach to sexual health will work everywhere. “There are very different economic, religious and social rules governing sexual conduct across the world,” Wellings said.

For example, men and women in Australia, Britain, France and the United States tend to have an almost equal number of sexual partners. In contrast, in Cameroon, Haiti, and Kenya, men tend to have multiple partners while women tend only to have one.

Along with other industrialised countries, Australia was one in which having two or more sexual partners in the past year was comparatively common.

Single men and women in Africa were fairly sexually inactive: only two-thirds of them reported recent sexual activity, compared with three-quarters of their counterparts in developed countries.

In what researchers said was proof the sexual double standard was still strong, more men than women reported having more than one partner.

“These findings beg the question of who the men are having sex with,” they wrote.

Italy had one of the lowest percentages of men who had sex before age 15 (4 per cent), compared to 18 per cent in the United States and 30 per cent in Brazil and the Dominican Republic. The researchers said early initiation was more likely to be non-consensual, unsafe and generally to be regretted later.

The study suggests that unequal treatment of girls and women as the major sexual-health issue.

The researchers call for providing sexual health services to unmarried young women, supplying condoms, decriminalizing commercial sex and homosexual sex, and prosecuting the perpetrators of sexual violence.

Experts say data gleaned from the study will be useful not only in dispelling popular myths about sexual behaviour, but in shaping policies that will help improve sexual health across the world.

“There’s a misperception that there’s a great deal of promiscuity in Africa, which is one of the potential reasons for HIV/AIDS spreading so rapidly,” said van Look

Fewer than half of unmarried non-virgins reported having sex in the past month.

Some of the major findings the survey found were:

  • School-based sexual education delays and does not hasten onset of sexual activity.
  • First sexual experience is often forced or sold.
  • Marriage is no safeguard of sexual health. It is more difficult for married women to negotiate safe sex and condom use than it is for single women.
  • Condom use is increasing, but condom-use rates remain low in many developing countries.
  • Among girls who marry at a very young age, “very early sexual experience within marriage can be coercive and traumatic.”
  • While there is no major trend toward earlier sexual experience, a trend toward later marriage has led to an increase in premarital sex.
  • Public health measures to improve sexual health should focus not only on individual behaviours but also on broader issues such as gender, poverty, and mobility.
  • Public-health messages intended to reduce sexual risk-taking “should respect diversity and preserve choice.”
  • Monogamy is the dominant pattern in most parts of the world. Men report more multiple partnerships than do women. Such men are more likely to live in developed nations.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.

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June 21st, 2019

Natural death confirmed for man who died on Disney World roller coaster

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Natural death confirmed for man who died on Disney World roller coaster

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The man who died while riding the Expedition Everest roller coaster at Walt Disney World‘s Animal Kingdom indeed had prior medical conditions, Orlando, Florida officials say.

The Orange County medical examiner determined in a Tuesday autopsy that 44-year-old Navarre, Florida man Jeffery Reed had an existing heart condition.

The Walt Disney World website for the ride says:

WARNING! For safety, you should be in good health and free from high blood pressure, heart, back or neck problems, motion sickness, or other conditions that could be aggravated by this adventure. Expectant mothers should not ride.

Similar signs exist at the entrance to the ride.

The man was given CPR after being pulled off the ride unconscious, and was taken in an ambulance to Celebration Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Reed was believed to have been conscious at least 50 seconds before the ride ended, when a camera took a picture of him. Cameras are sometimes placed on roller coasters so that riders can buy a photo of themselves as they go down a hill.

Orlando Sentinel columnist Mike Thomas commented, that “when millions of people walk through your parks every year, it is a statistical certainty that some of them will die. When that happens on a ride, we often tell you about it under a banner headline. It becomes a worldwide story. But if you did the math, you would find that per capita no more people die in Disney than in any other large gathering place.”

There was no defibrillator available to Disney employees when the man collapsed, and paramedics took five minutes to arrive with such equipment. Disney has 500 defibrillators at its resort, however only two are at the Animal Kingdom park. Neither are stored at rides.

Disney has said it will order 200 more defibrillators, which for the most part will be placed at public restrooms, ensuring they are easily identifiable. Restrooms are also statistically one of the most likely places for seniors to die; these deaths are referred to by paramedics as a “commode code”.

Police originally identified the man as “Jeffery Reed”, where his name was actually “Jeffery Chalmers Reeb”; the name on police reports was correct, however.

Since 1989, 15 people have died while riding on rides at the park; many who have died on park rides have had prior aliments.

A four-year-old who died on the Body Wars ride in 1995 had a cardiac conduction defect, which is a congenital heart condition; the mother insisted the girl had no history of health problems, but relatives told officials that the girl was being treated at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston for undisclosed reasons.

Autopsy of a boy who died on Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster in 2006 found he too had a congenital heart problem. In 2006, a 49-year-old German tourist died in a hospital after she fell ill on the Mission: Space ride, from bleeding brain caused by high blood pressure, not provoked by the ride.

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June 20th, 2019

Category:June 7, 2006

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June 17th, 2019

Stacey Abrams becomes first black woman to gain major U.S. party nomination for governor of Georgia

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Stacey Abrams becomes first black woman to gain major U.S. party nomination for governor of Georgia

Friday, May 25, 2018

On Tuesday night, Stacey Abrams became the United States Democratic Party’s candidate for governor of the state of Georgia, the first black woman nominated for this office. If she wins the election scheduled to be held in November, she would be the first woman governor of Georgia and the first black woman elected governor of any state in U.S. history.

“I will be the governor who brings more than jobs to Georgia,” Abrams said in her acceptance speech, “together, we can build career pipelines in renewable energy. We can spur creativity through a growing entertainment industry, and we can increase the strength of our trade unions to grow an economy that lifts every Georgian.”

In the primary election, 76.5% of participating registered Democrats and eligible independents voted for Abrams over her opponent, Stacey Evans, to a total of 423,163 votes. Evans won 23.5%. Ahead of the primary, Abrams had announced a plan for winning the scheduled November election that focused on mobilizing and motivating liberal voters who would otherwise stay home on election day. Evans, who is from Georgia’s rural northwest, sought to win over the contested moderate vote from the Republicans.

Adrianne Shropshire of BlackPAC, a group that supported Abrams, attributed her victory to strategy. “Stacey Abrams won this election because she reached out and engaged communities of color, particularly black voters, on the issues that they care about. This historic victory is a model for candidates all across the country.” After the election, Evans immediately announced her support for Abrams.

Abrams is originally from Gulfport, Mississippi, but moved to Atlanta, Georgia, as a youth. She holds three degrees, including a law degree from Yale Law School and has worked as a lawyer and entrepreneur as well as serving in the Georgia state legislature. Her accomplishments include being the first woman to lead a major party in the Georgia General Assembly and being the first black person to head the Georgia House of Representatives.

Abrams stated her plans on her campaign website assuming victory in the November election: “As Georgia’s next governor, I will prioritize economic mobility as key to ensuring our state is known as a place for prosperity. Poverty and inequality stand in the way of economic growth for our state through higher social costs, lost earnings, and weakened competitiveness.” Specifics included an earned income tax credit, expansion of protections for Georgians with disabilities, and ending workplace discrimination.

The other major party in this election is the Republican Party. The governorship has been held by Republicans since 2003, but previously Georgia has a long history of governors from the Democratic Party.

Abrams’ opponent for November has yet to be determined. The current front runners for the Republican nomination for governor are Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle and Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, scheduled for a runoff election on July 24.

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June 14th, 2019

Accused have denied guilt in suitcase murder case

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Accused have denied guilt in suitcase murder case

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Two men charged after the body of a Chinese student was stuffed into a suitcase and thrown into Auckland’s harbour on Good Friday would deny their guilt, a court was told today.

One of them appeared in Auckland District Court today to be confronted with the charge of kidnapping a 19-year-old English language student, ransom and murder. The other accused appeared on a charge of hiding evidence for the murder. They have been granted name suppression until their next appearance in court.

According to lawyers, pleas of not guilty would be entered.

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June 13th, 2019

New Zealand dog saves five children; receives international attention

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New Zealand dog saves five children; receives international attention

Saturday, May 5, 2007

A small, “nicely trained” Jack Russell Terrier gave his life to help save a group of five children from two aggressive pitbulls last Sunday in Manaia, Taranaki, New Zealand.

The dog named George is being described as a hero, gathering a huge amount of international media interest in the process.

The dog suffered massive injuries that the vet had never seen to that extent before, which resulted in 69-year-old Alan Gay, the dog’s owner, allowing George to be put down. He now regrets this decision.

The two pitbulls rushed at the group of children that George was following to the dairy, including a four-year-old. George then started barking loudly at the pair of dogs, and put himself between the dogs and the children. Mr Gay told Fox News, “If it wasn’t for George, those kids would have copped it.”

Despite having received offers of new dogs, Mr Gay has said that he will wait a while before getting another Jack Russell Terrier, as he is afraid it could happen again.

It is also believed that the two attacking dogs, which have been destroyed, were bred to be aggressive, including being fed the drug methamphetamine, commonly referred to as “P” in New Zealand.

Mr Gay has said that Manaia has had a problem with stray dogs before, but he never expected that George would become a victim.

One story ran in USA Today, which prompted over 120 comments, and one reader to personally call Alan Gay expressing their condolences.

Responding to the huge amount of media interest, Mr Gay said, “This really surprises me, and it’s marvellous. I never expected this … I’m surprised it got around the world as it did.” He says he has been getting a huge amount of phone calls from the media and the public. “The phone has been going since about half past seven this morning. Every time I hang up it rings again. It’s worn out; I might have to get a new one.”

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June 12th, 2019

Owner wants $10 million for Flight 93 crash site land

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Owner wants $10 million for Flight 93 crash site land

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Mike Svonavec, the owner of the land in Somerset County, Pennsylvania where United Airlines Flight 93 crashed on September 11, 2001 has set a US$10 million price tag for his property, which is sought by the group, Families of Flight 93 and the United States National Park Service for building a memorial dedicated to those on the plane.

Svonavec says that the price is fair market value for the 273 acre property and the organization would not be charged for the exact site of the crash. The organization has offered to buy the land for no more than $500,000 at least three times.

Currently, the U.S. National Park Service only owns approximately 60 acres of the land. PBS Coals Inc. owns 864 acres of the land and Svonavec owns 273 acres. The entire field is nearly 2,000 acres.

The permanent memorial is estimated to cost $58 million and is scheduled to be constructed starting in 2008 or 2009. On the ten-year anniversary of 9/11, a ribbon will be cut at the site.

Svonavec has also placed a box on the crash site temporary memorial, where visitors can leave a “donation” to pay for his asking price for the land as well as the cost of providing security at the site. Funding was provided for the cost of security, but in February the funds were already used up and Svonavec says he can no longer afford to keep the land maintained and secure. Reports say that the security company that is currently in charge of security charges $10,000 per month.

“That land has been paid for with 40 lives…the donation box is an insult to that cost. I think Svonavec believes his land, because it has the blood of my cousin and 39 other people, it’s worth more,” said Patrick White, Vice President, Families of Flight 93.

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June 8th, 2019

An account of the Esperanza Fire from an animal rescuer

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An account of the Esperanza Fire from an animal rescuer
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.

Saturday, December 2, 2006

As families fled their homes in the early morning hours on Thursday October 26, there was no warning. The Esperanza Fire southeast of Los Angeles and West of Palm Springs, California, had ballooned under the influence of Santa Ana winds to more than 19,000 acres as of the morning of October 27. No time to get the animals, no time for crates or even a leash. Sadly, owners left behind not only their horses, lamas, donkeys, chickens, rabbits, but also their dogs and cats.

Many of the families who did manage to evacuate their pets found themselves in the parking lot at the Fellowship in the Pass Church Red Cross Shelter where a MuttShack Animal Rescue team caught up with them.

Pam Anderson, Director of the emergency Red Cross shelter said that many people with animals had come and left.

The air was thick with smoke, and ash was raining down on the parking lot where dog owners, not able to take their dogs into the shelter were camping out in pup tents andin their cars.

Those who could afford it checked themselves into pet friendly hotels in nearby towns.

Some were prepared. Jane Garner, a small dog breeder was able to get all her animals out, and had set up her puppy runs alongside her RV in the parking lot. Others were not doing too well, having left home without as much as a leash.

The same scenario played out at the Red Cross shelter at Hemet High School. Animals were being boarded in vans, trailers and cars and small travel crates.

When MuttShack Animal Rescue arrived, a small fracas had sent several dogs off in different directions, running out of the school parking lot down busy streets necessitating an instant rescue response.

The Incident Command for the Esperanza Animals, Ramona Humane Society in San Jacinto welcomed MuttShack‘s offer to help at the shelters.

Ramona Humane Society had recently published a notice in their Newsletter about the newly passed “PETS Act”and warned owners not wait until a major disaster such as an earthquake or fireto prepare. “Be proactive to ensure that your pet will be taken care of.”

MuttShack and PetSmart Charities set up ad hoc facilities for the animals at both shelters.

The Red Cross shelter, run by Madison Burtchaell of the Orange County Red Cross was very accommodating about allowing a small emergency pet shelter adjacent to the School.

Barbara A. Fought of PetSmart Charities, an organization that works with animal welfare organizations and provide assistance in disasters, provided crates and emergency supplies.

MuttShack and Red Cross volunteers, Martin St. John, Tom Hamilton, and Steve Meissner helped assemble the crates to secure a safe environment for evacuated pets.

It was a great relief for evacuees who had camped out in the parking lot to finally leave their vehicles and relax at the shelter, setting up their cots to grab some sorely needed rest.

Firefighters and residents reported loss of wildlife and animals. The Esperanza fire burned 34 homes, consumed 40,000 acres and cost five Firefighters their lives before it was contained four days later on October 30. Firefighting operations cost nearly $10 million.

MuttShack Animal Rescue is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization active in disasters and dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and care of lost or discarded dogs, cats and other animals.

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June 7th, 2019

Wikinews interviews Steve Burke, U.S. Democratic Party presidential candidate

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Wikinews interviews Steve Burke, U.S. Democratic Party presidential candidate

Sunday, December 13, 2015

This article is a featured article. It is considered one of the best works of the Wikinews community. See Wikinews:Featured articles for more information.

Macomb, New York Councilman Steve Burke took some time to speak with Wikinews about his campaign for the U.S. Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential nomination.

Burke, an insurance adjuster and farmer, was elected councilman in Brookhaven, New York in 1979. He left the town after being accused and found not guilty of bribery in the 1980s. Since 1987 he has served as Macomb councilman off-and-on and currently holds the post. From 1993 to 1996 and 1999 to 2002 he worked as chairman of the Democratic Party of St. Lawrence County, New York. Among his many political campaigns, Burke unsuccessfully sought the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination in 1992 and recently attempted to run for U.S. Congress in 2014 but too many of his ballot petition signatures were found invalid. Burke filed with the Federal Election Commission to run for president in the 2016 election on September 18, 2015 and has qualified for the first-in-the-nation New Hampshire Primary.

With Wikinews reporter William S. Saturn?, Burke discusses his political background, his 2016 presidential campaign, and his policy proposals.

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