As few as one per cent of the employees working fo

first_imgAs few as one per cent of the employees working for some UK broadcasters have described themselves as disabled people, according to new research by the industry regulator.Ofcom’s Diversity And Equal Opportunities In Television report says disabled people appear to be “significantly under-represented” across the television industry, at just three per cent.The Ofcom report – which focuses on the five main broadcasters, but also looks at another 342 smaller organisations – found that only one per cent of staff working for ITV and Viacom (which owns Channel 5) describe themselves as disabled.Sky is only slightly better, at two per cent, while Channel 4 performed best with disabled people making up 11 per cent of its workforce.Although the report says that only four per cent of BBC staff say they are disabled, this figure represents the calendar year 2016 and new figures, following a diversity and inclusion census carried out towards the end of last year, show a much higher proportion, at 10 per cent*.The Ofcom report says there is a “worrying” lack of data on disability, with no information on 30 per cent of staff across the television industry.ITV provided disability data on fewer than half of its employees, while Sky provided disability information on just two per cent of its staff.Ofcom also says it has now started enforcement action against 57 broadcasters, because of their failure to provide any data on gender, race and disability.Simon Balcon, a member of the deaf and disabled members committee (DDMC) of the performers’ union Equity, welcomed the Ofcom report.He said: “I think that it’s great that reports like this actually exist, and that attention to the issue of casting actors with disabilities is getting more attention.“I also think that more can be done, though. While the BBC is doing more than other channels to be progressive with its casting, actors with disabilities are less visible than on other channels, strange as this may seem.“I would echo the report’s concern… that there is a worrying lack of data for disabled people, as this does not give us a full picture.“However, I am glad the Ofcom is taking action against those who refuse to supply information.”Balcon said the report showed there was “certainly more that broadcasters can do for freelancers with a disability [particularly actors and other artists], as only one per cent are in this category.”And he said he agreed that “more monitoring needs to be done, as the picture may not be accurate at present.“More organisations must monitor their employees and those employed as freelancers, and then we can get a clearer picture.”Sharon White, Ofcom’s chief executive, says in the report: “Disabled people are particularly poorly represented at all levels of the industry.”The report concludes: “Broadcasters have an obligation, as a condition of their licences, to take measures to promote equality of opportunity in employment.“Without accurate monitoring, it is unclear how some broadcasters can identify any gaps, ensure the relevance of their equality and diversity policies, and plan engagement with their employees to promote these policies.”The report is Ofcom’s first from its new Diversity in Broadcasting monitoring programme, which will reveal how well broadcasters’ employment policies are promoting equality of opportunity, diversity and inclusion.*The BBC data includes both television and radio staffPicture: Disabled actor Liz Carr as Clarissa Mullery in BBC’s Silent Witnesslast_img read more

Bill on separating AGs role is a parody of the Venice Commission

first_img SharePrint <a href=’;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> Former Law Faculty Dean Professor Kevin Aquilina has described the bill proposing the constitution of the Office of State Advocate and the separation of functions of state prosecutor from those of legal advisor to government, as a parody of the December 2018 Venice Commission’s Report.READ: Venice Commission suggests creation of independent prosecutorIn a paper published on GħSL’s online journal titled The State Advocate Bill No. 83 of 2019: Acting in Breach of Malta’s International Obligations, the former Dean criticised the bill as it was put forward saying it is ‘shabbily drafted’ adding that it is “legislative drafting mediocrity at its best” and vehemently argued against its adoption by Parliament. He explained how the bill runs counter to the doctrines of the separation of powers and rule of law, thus making a parody of the Venice Commission recommendations.‘Government acting in bad faith’Law Professor Aquilina questions whether the Government’s intention to legislate that part of the Venice Commission Report on the separation of the office of legal advisor to the government from that of the Director of Prosecutions, is reflected in the Bill proposed. He further argued that on analysing the Bill and the Report, one finds inconsistencies between both documents. Adding that it indicates that “the government is in bad faith when it claims it is implementing the Venice Commission Report and complying with its international law obligations”.READ: AG draft legislative amendment discussed in ParliamentAmong the examples cited by Aquilina, he points out that the Venice Commission questioned the various roles which the Attorney General carries out however the bill addresses only one such conflict. The Bill falls short of addressing the Venice Commission criticism of the role of the Attorney General as the chair of the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit. Further, Aquilina observed that the Bill not only does not address the ‘absolute and unfettered discretion’ by which the Attorney General can decide on criminal proceedings, but increases more power in the hands of the AG contrary to what the Venice Commission has said in its opinion on the Maltese legal system. Thus, Aquilina remarked, the current bill is in line with the “Prime Minister’s current autocratic concentration of powers heavily criticised by the Venice Commission report”. Aquilina further added that by not providing for judicial review of the AG’s unfettered discretion in the institution, undertaking and discontinuing criminal proceedings which is found in the proposed Bill is in breach of the rule of law.‘The government seems to have no difficulty with breaching the rule of law’After enlisting eight points and explaining clearly what the Venice Commission has said and what was actually put down in the draft, the law professor concluded that “the government seems to have no difficulty with breaching the rule of law”. He further added that the only legitimate conclusion is that the government is “deliberately acting in bad faith”.More on this:Venice Commission calls for revision of constitutional rolesWhatsApplast_img read more

The Church in Singapore celebrates Catholic Youth Day

first_imgYouths participating in a workshop during Catholic Youths DayYouths participating in a workshop during Catholic Youths Day The Archdiocese of Singapore celebrated Catholic Youth Day 2019 on July 20 and 21. This year’s theme was “Jesus’ Name Above All Names” to celebrate the gift and centrality of Jesus Christ in the Catholic faith.The initiative was an invitation to all young people aged 16 to 35 to experience what to be part of the Church means – One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic -, alive in Jesus Christ.Gabriel is a young Catholic who took part in this celebration. In 2016, he witnessed over 2,000 young people pray together, which led him to desire a “deep passion for the Lord”.“I witnessed a deep yearning for the Lord as one united body of Christ … as everyone bowed down in silent Eucharistic adoration as the Blessed Sacrament was being exposed,” he told Fides News Agency.Church centered on Jesus ChristThrough this gathering of young people in the Archdiocese, Gabriel began to appreciate the reality of the Church: “The Church is much more than just a physical structure, it is made up of individuals with hearts united through prayer, worship, and communion, centered on Jesus Christ.”The Catholic Youth Day was also a call to young Catholics to proactively evangelize by inviting at least one other young person who does not know Jesus or who has been away from Church to come for the event.“CYD is for us a time to celebrate our faith among young people and also to share Jesus Christ with others, as a source and meaning of life”, said Father Brian D’Souza, OYP chaplain, to Fides.Youth challengesThe program of the Day was divided into two distinct segments. The first part began with prayer and adoration, followed by the preaching of Father Brian, and workshops on a variety of topics. In the evening, Mass was celebrated by the Archbishop of Singapore, Mgr. William Goh.After dinner, there was a brief contribution concerning the struggles that young people face, followed by the preaching by Fr. Jude David, OYP chaplain. At 10.30 pm the night vigil began in front of the Blessed Sacrament. Prayer ministry and the Sacrament of Reconciliation was available till midnight.The population of Singapore is 5.6 million inhabitants, of whom about 383 thousand are Catholics – 9 percent of the population.WhatsApp SharePrint <a href=’” alt=”last_img” /> read more