Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 34 n° 349

Archive for 11 dicembre 2013

The European court has lost its way

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

European Court of Justice

European Court of Justice (Photo credit: Gwenaël Piaser)

In a true democracy the courts are the primary guardians of rights and freedoms. Yet what happens when the courts ignore the laws that they have been established to uphold?The highest court in the European Union is notorious for fudge. Its duty is to interpret the EU treaty and measures enacted from it. Yet in practice the European Court of Justice (ECJ) operates as the guardian of its own prejudices. Such has been the case in the past when labour cartels have been found not to infringe EU anti-trust rules or when giving paid holiday rights when staff have been on sick leave – as if those recovering from sickness need to take another break to recover from the work they have not been performing.Now the court is poised to ignore the EU treaty again. The Advocate-General Yves Bot (adviser to the ECJ) has just issued an opinion in the case Lock vs British Gas Trading Limited. In it he recommends to the court that commission payments should be taken into account when setting holiday pay – even though annual leave was taken into account by the company when setting commission levels. If the court follows such guidance it will reinforce previous ECJ decisions such as British Airways vs Williams where it has presumed to have powers in the field of remuneration.According to FedEE’s Secretary-General, Robin Chater “neither the ECJ nor EU legislators drawing up the Working Time Directive itself have had any powers in respect to remuneration – in any form except gender-based equal pay. Article 153 of the EU Treaty specifically excludes such powers. Thus not only the Working Time Directive, but also Directives in the field of Jobs posting, fixed-term workers and temporary agency workers all infringe the EU treaty and should be amended or repealed”.Will this happen? Of course not – as the courts have now waded in too far with legal precedent and so accepting their own ignorance of the EU treaty would totally undermine their credibility. More time for another dollop of euro-fudge perhaps?

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Pope Francis says that the world can no longer turn away from the millions of people who are suffering from hunger

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

English: View of the church San Francesco a Ri...

English: View of the church San Francesco a Ripa in Trastevere, Rome (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In a video message to launch Caritas Internationalis’ global campaign, One Human Family, Food for All, Pope Francis said, “We are in front of a global scandal of around one billion people who still suffer from hunger today. We cannot look the other way. The food available in the world is enough to feed everyone.”
One Human Family, Food for Allunites the efforts of the Caritas confederation’s 164 Catholic organisations worldwide to work towards ending hunger by 2025.Caritas believes that the implementation of the right to food in countries where it doesn’t exist is a fundamental step to eliminating global hunger “I invite you to make space in your heart for this emergency of respecting the God-given rights of everyone to have access to adequate food. We share what we have in Christian charity with those who face numerous obstacles to satisfy such a basic need,” said the Holy Father.Pope Francis also urges people to look at their own lives to see what changes they can make: “This campaign is also an invitation to all of us to become more conscious in our food choices, which often lead to waste and a poor use of the resources available to us. It is also a reminder to stop thinking that our daily actions do not have an impact on the lives of those who suffer from hunger first-hand.”Caritas’ campaign will be launched 10th December with a “wave of prayer”. Starting on the Pacific Island of Samoa, Caritas organisations at midday in their country will take part in a prayer service to pray and reflect on the issue of hunger. For more information, click here.“I ask you from the bottom of my heart to support our Caritas organisations in this noble campaign where they will act as one human family to ensure food for all.
Let us pray that the Lord gives us the grace to envisage a world in which no one must ever again die of hunger. And asking for this grace, I give you my blessing,” said Pope Francis.The Rome launch of the campaign will kick off with a press conference at the basilica of Santa Cecilia at 10.30am followed by a prayer service at San Francesco a Ripa church in Trastevere at midday.Participants in the press conference include Caritas secretary general Michel Roy, director of Caritas Senegal Abbé Ambroise Tine and director of Caritas Rome, Msgr Enrico Feroci and Ferruccio Ferrante from Caritas Italiana.Programmes to promote justice and citizens’ rights in the EU
Promoting an effective access to justice and citizens’ rights EU-wide is the aim of two programmes adopted by the European Parliament on Tuesday. Actions to be supported by the Justice Programme and the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme 2014-2020 include awareness-raining campaigns, training activities and cross-border cooperation. Public authorities and NGOs will have easier access to funding thanks to the removal of administrative burdens.The Justice Programme, with a budget of 377,604 million euros, aims to support judicial cooperation in civil and criminal matters, to facilitate access to justice and to support initiatives in the field of drug policy. In order to build mutual trust and cooperation among judicial authorities across borders, MEPs highlighted the importance of supporting judicial training of legal professionals.The Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme will have a budget of 439,473 million euros aimed at financing actions to promote the rights of European citizens, the principles of non-discrimination and equality between women and men, the right to protection of personal data, the rights of the child and consumers’ rights. MEPs also included among its objectives the prevention and fight against racism, xenophobia and homophobia, the rights of persons with disabilities, as well as the protection of victims of violence.

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Europe’s biggest ever anti bullying campaign launched as research reveals

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

Europeans feel their governments are not doing enough to tackle bullying.

Press room of the European Commission inside t...

Press room of the European Commission inside the Berlaymont building, Brussels. Taken on EU open day 2007. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 More than 7 in 10 European citizens believe their government is not doing enough to tackle bullying in schools and even more believe not enough is being done to tackle cyberbullying*, research from BeatBullying, Europe’s largest anti-bullying NGO, reveals today.The research comes as BeatBullying teams up with the #DeleteCyberbullying project to launch Europe’s biggest anti bullying campaign; The Big March. The innovative digital protest march is funded by the European Commission, and aims to protect European children from bullying and cyberbullying, and will see avatars created by millions of European children, parents, teachers and celebrities march across websites in March 2014.Part of the DeleteCyberbullying campaign, The Big March is an alliance of major European brands and NGOs, including Google, YouTube, Disney, Moshi Monsters, Stardoll, the Safer Internet Network, European Youth Forum, Erasmus Student Network, among hundreds of others.The campaign is also supported by a number of European celebrities, including the UK X-Factor winners Little Mix, German hearthrob Jimi Blue, Germany’s Next Top Model winner Barbara Meier and Belgian popstar Ian Thomas.The Big March calls for pan-European action on bullying across all levels of society:
● The EU institutions are being asked to observe an awareness day against bullying in Europe
● and to introduce new laws to protect the right of European children to go online without fear of being bullied or harassed.
● through a directive to tackle online bullying across member states which includes a framework for cross-border cooperation and intervention
● Governments of member states are being asked to promote the issue of bullying up the EU agenda and implement the EU anti-bullying strategy in full, including the Laws introduced in the new directive
● Local Government and Schools are being asked to review their approach to cyberbullying to ensure children and young people have the protections and support they deserve
● Citizens are being asked to demand politicians take action by supporting The Big March, and to take personal responsibility and reporting negative online behaviour wherever they see it.

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Salute e diritti sessuali e riproduttivi sono materia per gli Stati membri, dicono i deputati

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

Parlamento Europeo

Parlamento Europeo (Photo credit: Naroh)

Il Parlamento europeo ha approvato una risoluzione non vincolante sulla salute e sui diritti sessuali e riproduttivi, presentata dai gruppi PPE e ECR, in cui si afferma che la formulazione e l’attuazione delle politiche sulla salute e diritti sessuali, inclusa l’educazione sessuale nelle scuole, è competenza degli Stati membri. La risoluzione è stata approvata con 334 voti a favore a 327 e 35 astensioni.Una risoluzione non vincolante era stata presentata dalla commissione per i diritti delle donne alla plenaria di ottobre, dando adito a controversie. Il testo era stato poi rinviato alla commissione parlamentare per ulteriore discussione. La commissione per i diritti delle donne aveva poi approvato alcune modifiche, senza tuttavia alterare la sostanza del testo che è stato ripresentato per il voto in questa sessione plenaria di dicembre. Tuttavia, l’Aula ha adottato il testo alternativo presentato da PPE e ECR, rendendo quindi caduco quello della commissione parlamentare.

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Il Parlamento sostiene il potenziamento del meccanismo comunitario di risposta alle catastrofi

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

English: Canadair I-DPCW -- 16 - Italian "...

English: Canadair I-DPCW — 16 – Italian “Protezione Civile” Italiano: Canadair I-DPCW — 16 – Protezione Civile Italiana (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Le nuove regole che aggiornano il meccanismo di protezione civile dell’UE, che coordina gli interventi in risposta a catastrofi naturali e di origine umana come terremoti, perdite di petrolio in mare o incendi, sono state approvate martedì dai deputati. La proposta, già concordata con i governi nazionali, assicura maggiori finanziamenti e semplifica la procedura per mettere in comune risorse quali squadre di soccorso e aerei, facilitando interventi anche per catastrofi al di fuori dell’UE.”Oggi, abbiamo fatto un passo piccolo ma concreto per rendere la nostra Unione europea un luogo più sicuro”, ha dichiarato la relatrice Elisabetta Gardini (PPE, IT), dopo che la sua relazione è stata approvata con 608 voti favorevoli, 75 contrari e 10 astensioni.”Con questo meccanismo, gli Stati membri e le relative autorità possono lavorare insieme, attraverso le frontiere, per preparare al meglio e rispondere alle catastrofi in modo più efficiente ed efficace. Questa legislazione si occupa di un settore del nostro lavoro nel quale il cittadino UE medio vuole “più Europa””, ha concluso.Il bilancio della protezione civile per il 2014-2020 è stato aumentato a 368.428.000 di euro ai prezzi attuali.Per prevenire efficacemente le catastrofi, i paesi europei potranno coordinarsi meglio per rispondere ai disastri e condividere, su base regolare, le informazioni sulla valutazione dei rischi, sullo scambio di migliori pratiche nonché individuare congiuntamente i punti che richiedono ulteriori sforzi.Gli addetti alla protezione civile che operano al di fuori dei loro paesi d’origine potranno avvalersi di più formazione e saranno previste più esercitazioni per testare le capacità di reazione, quali squadre di ricerca e di soccorso e ospedali da campo.
Verrà inoltre creato un Centro europeo di risposta alle emergenze (CERE), che sostituirà le vigenti disposizioni ad hoc con un sistema più prevedibile e affidabile.

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MEPs debate future of Safe Harbour standards, data protection reform

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

Safe Harbor, Winter Solstice

Safe Harbor, Winter Solstice (Photo credit: stonebird)

MEPs questioned Commission Vice-President Viviane Reding’s plans to improve Safe Harbour data protection standards at a Civil Liberties Committee hearing on Monday evening. While some MEPs asked how the EC proposals will work in practice, others proposed the EU to withdraw from the scheme and certify US companies by itself. Europe’s data protection reform also took centre stage in the discussions, as MEPs criticised the Council for moving too slowly towards a negotiating mandate to kick off talks with Parliament.”I can’t see that we are doing much to regain the trust of our citizens”, said Axel Voss (EPP, DE) at the 14th hearing of the Civil Liberties Committee inquiry on mass surveillance of EU citizens. He proposed to withdraw from the current Safe Harbour agreement and “set up a new version based on better data protection standards”. “Perhaps we should certify US companies ourselves”, he added. “How enforceable can the Commission recommendations be?”, rapporteur for the Civil Liberties Committee inquiry Claude Moraes (S&D, UK) asked.”These recommendations are a to-do list and not a basis for negotiation”, Ms Reding replied, adding that suppressing the Safe Harbour deal “would not be a good idea”. She also pointed out that 95 % of European companies consider Safe Harbour standards are needed.”We need to rely much more on ourselves than dialoguing with someone who does not respect the rules”, Sophie in ‘t Veld (ALDE, NL) highlighted.The Safe Harbour agreement is a voluntary scheme laying down data protection standards applicable to US firms operating in Europe.

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Rules to prevent further loss of migrants’ lives off EU coasts

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

The official emblem of the European Parliament.

The official emblem of the European Parliament. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Draft rules to clarify how border guards serving in Frontex-coordinated maritime operations should deal with migrants intercepted or rescued at sea and where they should land them were approved by the Civil Liberties Committee on Monday. These rules should help to save lives, by removing confusion due to EU member states’ differing interpretations of international law. MEPs also inserted clauses to ensure that migrants’ rights are better protected.”The European Parliament has taken a step to respond to critics of Frontex operations by strengthening respect for the priority of saving lives. I hope that the Council will have the same priority and arrive swiftly at an agreement with Parliament to allow this regulation to take effect”, said rapporteur Carlos Coelho (EPP, PT).The draft EU regulation clarifies rules on the interception or rescue at sea of migrants and where they should be landed. These EU rules should remove confusion created by EU member states’ divergent interpretations of international law and practices. It should also improve the efficiency of Frontex-coordinated sea operations and help member states fulfil their duty to render assistance to persons in distress.The new rules should make it easier to ensure that border guards comply with all international obligations to render assistance to any ship or person in distress at sea.

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Sonno e ictus

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

Students from Bologna University

Students from Bologna University (Photo credit: micurs)

Curare i disturbi del sonno per prevenire l’ictus ischemico cerebrale, ma anche per migliorarne la prognosi. E’ il tema al centro della edizione 2013 della giornata delle Scienze Neurologiche, promossa dall’I.R.C.C.S. Istituto delle Scienze Neurologiche di Bologna, in programma il 10 dicembre presso l’Aula Magna del Dipartimento di Scienze Biomediche e Neuromotorie di via Ugo Foscolo 7, a Bologna.
Della correlazione tra disturbi del sonno e ictus si occuperà la lettura magistrale di Claudio Bassetti, Presidente della European Neurological Society e direttore del Neurology Department dell’Ospedale Universitario di Berna. La giornata, dedicata a Pasquale Montagna, scomparso tre anni fa, sarà coordinata da Agostino Baruzzi, Direttore Scientifico dell’IRCCS Istituto delle Scienze Neurologiche di Bologna. A questa edizione della giornata delle Scienze Neurologiche è abbinata la cerimonia di consegna del Premio della Fondazione Gino Galletti Neuroscience Prize 2013, destinato a un giovane ricercatore europeo che opera nel settore delle patologie neurodegenerative (quali, ad esempio, la malattia di Alzheimer o la malattia di Parkinson). Il riconoscimento, che comprende un premio economico di 10 mila euro, quest’anno andrà a Massimiliano Caiazzo, ricercatore dell’Istituto San Raffaele di Milano, che si è distinto con uno studio sulla generazione di neuroni dopaminergici da fibroblasti umani, una procedura che potrebbe facilitare in futuro la terapia con trapianti di cellule nella malattia di Parkinson.

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Pagamenti elettronici

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 11 dicembre 2013

Banca d'Italia

Banca d’Italia (Photo credit: Smeerch)

secondo i dati divulgati oggi da Bankitalia e in particolare nel rapporto “La Sepa e i suoi riflessi sul sistema dei pagamenti italiano”, in Italia l’uso del contante è nettamente preferito ai più moderni strumenti di pagamento. Nel 2012, infatti, ben l’83% delle transazioni complessive è stato eseguito in contante (la media europea è del 65%) e il numero delle operazioni pro capite annue effettuate con strumenti di pagamento diversi dal contante sono solo 71 (187 è la media europea e 194 quella dell’area euro).Per favorire la diffusione dell’utilizzo dei pagamenti elettronici nel nostro Paese, Maurizio Santacroce, Direttore della Business Unit Digital Games & Services di Sisal, commenta:“Secondo i dati evidenziati da Bankitalia, il nostro Paese è agli ultimi posti in merito all’uso dei pagamenti elettronici, ma ha grandi potenzialità di crescita, soprattutto se si guarda al futuro della moneta elettronica – dichiara Maurizio Santacroce Direttore, Divisione Digital Games & Services Sisal -. Nel 2013, secondo una nostra recente indagine, ben l’87% degli italiani si dichiara favorevole all’utilizzo di strumenti più moderni, con un trend di crescita. Bisogna quindi investire nell’infrastruttura tecnologica e oltre a quanto già previsto per la digitalizzazione delle Pubbliche amministrazioni, che entro il 31 dicembre 2015 dovranno essere in regola, è necessario affiancare anche quelli provenienti da soggetti privati. Solo in questo modo si possono ottenere risultati soddisfacenti e in questo ambito SisalPay ha previsto un forte investimento sulla propria rete per consentire ai cittadini di effettuare pagamenti utilizzando le carte di credito, debito e bancomat. Un passo che porterà la moneta elettronica nella vita quotidiana degli italiani”.

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