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PCC Veterans Club Shows Support as Local Congresswomen Call for Pentagon to Repay Local National Guard Members

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Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Community News Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Representatives Judy Chu and Janice Hahn hosted a press conference with local veteran groups at the Alhambra American Legion Post 139 Friday to call for legislation that will provide a permanent solution for the Pentagon’s collection of enlistment bonuses that were mistakenly given to members of the California National Guard.The story that made recent national news has since produced a temporary fix, according to Chu, after Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced a halt to the repayments Wednesday. Several groups including Pasadena’s own PCC Student Veterans Association were in attendance to show support for the men and women affected and to represent a portion the city’s veteran population.“I was shocked and outraged when I heard the stories of veterans being forced to return their enlistment bonuses,” said Chu. “This is not how we should treat our men and women who volunteer to serve, especially during a time of war. Many of them acted in good faith, at times extending their years of service in exchange for these bonuses – years of their lives they cannot get back. The Pentagon halting all efforts to collect reimbursement from affected California National Guard members is a good first step, but it is not a permanent solution. That is why I am urging Congressional leadership to bring legislation to the floor when we return in November. We must enact legislation to forgive the money owed by those who fulfilled their duty and return the money already paid by those who have complied with their order.”Reps. Chu and Hahn were joined by representatives from The Veterans of Foreign Wars, various American Legion posts, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, In Helping Others, Vet Hunters, Disabled American Veterans, and GI Forum in addition to PCC’s veteran group.Chu told personal accounts of veterans that have acquired debt that can sometimes exceed a balance upwards of $30,000 with another individual who was tacked with a hefty debt after being injured serving overseas.“I appreciate that defense secretary Ash Carter has ordered the Pentagon to halt the clawback. It was the right call and brings long-overdue relief to these veterans and their families,” said Rep. Hahn who referred to this situation as sloppy accounting. “However, we know we can’t stop there and these veterans are still vulnerable if Congress does not act. Congress must pass a fix that ensures these veterans will be in the clear and addresses the incredibly unfair situation faced by those who were already forced to make payments. Congresswoman Chu and I will be ready to work and find a solution when we return to Washington.”There are approximately 40,000 veterans in the San Gabriel Valley alone, according to Veterans of Foreign Wars representative Dave Loera. These financial hardships that have been described in its simplest form as unfair by Chu and add to the already difficult circumstances that many veterans face.PCC’s Veterans Student Association is local resource for young veterans in Pasadena that provides resources, courses, a facility and helping hands for individuals struggling with the reality of assimilating back to civilian life.“It’s a way to decompress and good way to meet other brothers and sisters. It feels great knowing another person has your back,” said Veteran Marine Corp Sergeant and PCC student Christopher Munoz.“The PCC Veteran’s club is one of the best out there.”There are approximately 700 veterans on campus each semester at PCC with 150 being women veterans. The club currently has almost 200 members that participate regularly in meetings and functions.“The transition period we are given happens very quick. We simply aren’t the same kind of people as everyone else who we work with, or go to school with and so on,” said Munoz who mentioned inevitable issues veterans face are episodes of PTSD and feelings of isolation.The PCC Veteran’s club has their own space on that accommodates their growing membership. Weekly meetings are held and it is open every day for veterans to drop in at their own convenience and usually find themselves in discussion, taking courses and doing other things with fellow veterans. The room is referred to as the “smoke pit”.“The program understands our problem with integration. Everybody has a similar background and we are able to drop down our barriers and connect with one another. We get to be our selves instead of feeling isolated out here when we come bac. It’s a safe place for us,” said Munoz.Vietnam War Veteran Harold Martin served in both the Army and National Guard for over twenty years and is an advisor for the PCC Veterans Club. He has eight years experience teaching transitional courses to veterans at PCC, which is the second school in the nation to offer these types of courses dubbed “Boots to Books”.“These courses serve veterans that would most benefit from a transitional course to help them go from a military mind set and back to a student and civilian mind set. Most young veterans we see went straight into the military right out of high school and that has been their primary adult experience in the world—and that’s a world very different from civilian society. We have these alternative universes that suddenly collide once that veteran returns and decides to go to college,” said Martin.The semester long course Martin teaches aims to accelerate the vets’ transitional as quickly as possible.“We know that the number one difference of whether a veteran is going to be successful or drop out is due to social support. We try to create that social support on campus by getting people to bond together in the class and by also participating in club activities,” said Martin.Both Munoz and Martin have not been personally affected by the recent financial problem and are not aware of any PCC veterans that have been affected. The news is still disappointing to say the least.“I’m not surprised. This kind of stuff happens to us veterans more than people think. Its great to see people from Congress getting on this issue,” said Munoz. “Most of our vets are under thirty and this financial problem seems to have affected the Gulf War vets more than anything. We still care for our own guys and that’s why we’re out here to support.”Members of the National Guard who have been impacted by the repayments are encouraged to contact their Congressional offices for assistance.For more information about PCC’s Veterans Club, visit http://www.pasadena.edu/academics/support/veterans-services/. 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Technology forcing the pace of media change.

first_imgBy Andrew CareyWHILE technology is dictating how news is delivered in the age of digital media, good storytelling and quality journalism will stand out on any news platform, according to Irish Times editor Kevin O’Sullivan.Presenting the Irish Times Journalism award to University of Limerick student Ruth O’Shaughnessy for her work on the implementation of the European Globalisation Fund programme at Dell, Mr O’Sullivan said that while news gathering was increasingly ‘digital first’, it didn’t mean the role of the newspaper was devalued.“We are, and will continue to be, in the business of breaking significant news but a core strength in our case will be interpretation. That’s what we feel we are good at. We will publish journalism in the public interest – and that might come at a cost,” he explained.In the new world of citizen journalism, Mr O’Sullivan said that tweeting first may not always be correct as it is still important to check all the facts.“The world has got very noisy in the media sense but good storytelling and quality journalism still stand out on any platform or channel… and are increasingly considered of value,” he continued.Addressing UL journalism students on the role of the journalist in the multimedia era, Mr O’Sullivan acknowledged that a cultural shift in tone was needed to respond to the change in reading and consumption patterns.Acknowledging that there would be winners and losers in the new media landscape, the Irish Times editor said that the world of journalism was still “exciting, chaotic and unrelenting”.He said that a vibrant curiosity, a sharp news sense and the ability to write and communicate with clarity are still highly valuable in the media business.Addressing the issue of how journalism will be financed in the future, he questioned whether or not the ‘paid content horse’ had bolted in that “the majority of consumers will never again consider news something they have to pay for”. Mr O’Sullivan added that “digital platforms are notable for their new and engaging informality, but for many traditional newspapers, that is a different country. A cultural shift in tone is required… a move to smart, fun, witty; basic and sophisticated all at the same time is required, it’s the digital way of doing content. There is no guarantee of media success in the current flux but fairness and rigorous adherence to facts are prerequisites for sound journalism,” Mr O’Sullivan concluded. Facebook Advertisement RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Walk in Covid testing available in Limerick from Saturday 10th April Print WhatsApp Local backlash over Aer Lingus threat Limerick on Covid watch list LifestyleArtsNewsTechnology forcing the pace of media change.By Guest Writer – November 7, 2013 553 center_img Linkedin TAGSChangefeaturedJournalismMediaNewsTechnology Population of Mid West region increased by more than 3,000 in past year No vaccines in Limerick yet Previous articleLimerick delegates meet with Michael DellNext articleShane figures to be removed Guest Writerhttp://www.limerickpost.ie Email Twitter Shannon Airport braced for a devastating blow last_img read more

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Australia reports highest coronavirus deaths in 3 months, infections climb

first_img“This demonstrates the growing toll this terrible virus is taking on our community,” Health Minister Jenny Mikakos told reporters in the state capital, Melbourne.With authorities unable to bring new infections below triple digits, residents in Melbourne and most of the state are now required to wear masks outside of their homes.Nationally, Australia has recorded about 13,000 coronavirus cases with a death toll of 128.Mountain to climb Australia reported its highest daily number of coronavirus-related deaths in three months on Thursday as new infections continued to climb in its second most populous state.Victoria state said it had confirmed another 403 infections, while five people had died from the virus in the last 24 hours.The fatalities, including a man in his 50s, mark the country’s biggest one-day rise in COVID-19 deaths since late April. Topics :center_img The rise in new infections came after Australia began relaxing strict containment measures imposed in mid-March.While the social distancing rules – which limited mobility of residents and shuttered businesses – slowed the spread of COVID-19, Australian Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said it has taken a heavy toll on the economy.The government reported its biggest budget deficit since World War Two on Thursday after committing to fiscal stimulus of around A$289 billion, or 14.6% of gross domestic product (GDP).The budget swung into a massive deficit of A$85.8 billion ($61.3 billion) in the year-ended June 2020 compared with an earlier forecast for a surplus, Frydenberg said.The shortfall will climb further next year, hitting A$184.5 billion in 2020-21.”Australia is experiencing a health and economic crisis like nothing we have seen in the last 100 years,” Frydenberg told reporters in Canberra.”Our economy has taken a big hit and there are many challenges we confront. We can see the mountain ahead.”Setbacks to recoveryAnalysts expect the economy will rebound in coming months as life returns to some sort of normal, though much depends on whether authorities can keep a lid on new virus outbreaks in Melbourne and Sydney, its two biggest cities, a Reuters poll found.Victoria has for more than two weeks required nearly 5 million people to stay home unless leaving for permitted essential reasons.Residents who do not wear facemasks are liable to fines of A$200.State police said they will show some discretion over the coming week, though state Premier Daniel Andrews urged people to comply, citing the cases of four children hospitalized with COVID-19.”We all need to work together, doing simple things, doing, large and small things, each of us to protect each other,” Andrews told reporters in Melbourne.”It’s all about the small things, the small improvements in our internal processes, and in terms of compliance across the Victorian community that add up.”Authorities in Australia’s most populous state, New South Wales are also on high alert for new cases despite the border with Victoria being closed.last_img read more

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Thanksgiving Day pheasant hunt is a tradition for some families

first_imgMASON CITY — Thanksgiving brings family members together for the big meal — and for some it’s also a time for a family pheasant hunt.DNR wildlife biologist Todd Bogenschutz  says it is something to consider.  “Everybody comes back and visits the family for the holiday and the biggest issue is — can you squeeze in time to do it — and than is Mother Nature cooperating?,” he says.He says conditions are set up for success this year for those who have the tradition of the Thanksgiving hunt. “It’s just always nice to have some birds out there. And at least half of the state or two-thirds of the state that seems to be the case this year,” Bogenschutz says.”Encouraging folks — you know maybe you can sneak out before the Thanksgiving meal — or you know even maybe after to run off some of that turkey and stuffing that you ate.”He says if you can’t hunt on Thanksgiving Day, you can still plan a family hunt through this weekend. The pheasant season opened October 26th and Bogenschutz says you might have a little better luck than you normally at Thanksgiving time.“Typically the birds get hunter wise as we say as the season progresses. But this year with the late crop harvest, there’s still some crop fields that are coming out now. So there’s opportunity if one of those fields get harvested or has been harvested in the last week — there’s a good chance some of those birds haven’t been hunted yet,” according to Bogenchutz.He says birds that have just been forced out of their crop cover by the harvest may not be as good at avoiding hunters.“They might not be as wise as they normally would be if we had a normal crop year and they’d been hunted quite a bit,” he says. The pheasant season runs through January 10th.last_img read more

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