​Cyprus pension law puts migrant workers at disadvantage – ECJ

first_imgCyprus has failed to put migrating workers’ pension rights on equal footing to those of employees remaining within the country, according to the European Union’s highest court.The European Court of Justice (ECJ) said the Republic of Cyprus failed to allow the free movement of workers after it left in place a clause allowing for civil servants under 45 to be treated differently to those above the age.The disputed clause allowed for those over 45 and with a pensionable service record exceeding five years to receive a lump sum payment on leaving the civil service, and draw their accrued pension from 55, whereas those under 45 are merely entitled to a lump sum payment.In its judgment for case C‑515/14, the ECJ said that, by failing to repeal the clause with retroactive effect from the day Cyprus joined the EU in 2004, it left in place a law deterring workers from leaving the country to work in another member state. This resulted in “unequal treatment” of migrant workers, the court said, which violates the EU treaties.The clause no longer applies to new recruits, following a reform of civil service pensions effective from late 2011.The ruling notes: “Although member states retain the power to organise their social security schemes, they must, nonetheless, when exercising that power, observe EU law and, in particular, the provisions of the EC Treaty on freedom of movement for workers and the right of establishment.”The case was brought by the European Commission in 2013 as part of its regular referrals to the ECJ over member state failure to comply with EU law.,WebsitesWe are not responsible for the content of external sitesLink to European Court of Justice rulinglast_img read more

DSLR & Photography Tip: Koozie Lens Protectors

first_imgHere’s a quick “why didn’t I think of that!” tip for DSLR video shooters and still photographers: a beer koozie as a lens cover.Premiumbeat blog favorites Apartment Therapy & DIYPhotography.net recently shared a homemade solution for transporting your expensive DSLR lenses that was certainly worth sharing.  Inexpensive drink  koozies make for a great way to keep your lenses protected and secure.  Especially for photographers and videographers they may not have a dedicated gear bag (with padded inserts), koozies can provide an extra layer of protection in any bag.  Photography equipment is expensive.  This is a great trick for keeping it safe.Plus, you’ll also have something to keep your drink cool when the shoot wraps.  You certainly can’t go wrong with that.Do you have any DIY tips for hauling around your gear?We’d love to hear your own suggestions in the comments!Photo from Apartment Therapylast_img read more

How to Be Likeable

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Now Selling effectively still depends upon you being known, liked, and trusted. You want to be known for the value you create. You want to be trusted because of your character. And you want to be liked. That means you must be likeable.Presence: We underestimate the power of presence. “Being there” makes you more likeable. It allows a type of intimacy that is difficult to achieve otherwise. Showing up is a sign that you care, and caring about other people helps make you more likeable.Listening: There aren’t too many things that will make you more likeable than the ability to listen intently to what someone else is saying by giving them your full, undivided, phone-face-down-on-the-table attention. Listening is proof positive that you care. If you want the fastest route to likeability, listening is it.Engaging Conversationalist: You need to know things beyond your company, your product, and your solutions. You need to be well read. You need to be well versed in cultural references. Knowing what other people like and care about allows you to converse with people about the things that they want to talk about. You also have be interesting enough to engage people in conversations, allowing them open up.Sense of Humor: The great leveler. The ability to make people laugh makes you more likeable. Business is a serious game, and it helps to be able to bring some levity to conversations. If you present ideas, and you do just that if you sell, a sense of humor and comedic timing will make you more like able. A self-deprecating sense of humor is a sign that you can laugh at yourself, a key that unlocks many doors, likeability being one of them.Positive and Optimistic: The only people who like negative people are other negative people. They commiserate. They share their misery together. It is easy to like someone who is positive and optimistic. Positive people like to spend time with other positive people, and they especially like to work with them. Given the choice of working with a negative, cynical, pessimist or a positive, empowered, optimistic person, which would you find more like able.Respectful and Polite: Part of what makes you likeable is your polite and respectful disposition. Good manners will get you a lot further than you might believe. It displays character. It indicates a sense of class, refinement.Personable: This is about your appearance and your manners. Even if you want to wear a t-shirt and your ball cap backwards, or slant ways, or sideways, you are going to be judged by your appearance. Your appearance gives people an idea of who you are. It also suggests how successful you might be. How you present yourself is important to likeability.Collaborative: Inviting other people to contribute their ideas, regardless of whether it’s in a conversation or the design of a solution, makes you likeable. Collaboration proves that you care about what the other person wants, and that their ideas are important.Non-Judgmental: likeable people aren’t judgmental of other people. They don’t talk about them behind their backs, and they aren’t gossips. They also don’t assign blame to others. They assume others have good intentions and focus instead on finding solutions to challenges, regardless of the source.Your dream client is basing their decision to buy from you, in part, on what they believe you are going to be like to work with once hired. Being likeable tilts the playing field in your direction.last_img read more

Signs of our times are poor

first_imgOne of the pleasures of not being a professional writer is the advantage I have of writing without being subjected to its rules. That there should be rules to its writing would be obvious to anyone who reads the morning papers, listens to television news or views its ads. Or indeed travels around the city and country filled with signs and billboards and directional signals.Excessive wordiness is a peculiar Indian trait but it is hard to beat a sign that hangs at a Delhi sports complex. “The joggers and other walkers using the track alongside the Golf Driving Range are hereby advised to use the track on the other side of the cricket field for their purposes, as an occasional golf ball may fall on the track adjacent to the Range, and injure the said person. The sports complex takes no responsibility in case of injury as the members have already been forewarned of the impending injury”.PeculiaritySuch archaic and lengthy language immediately presumes the worst, that many will be injured, some seriously enough to wage a legal battle with the sports authority. The sign could well have read, “Beware of falling golf balls”, but then that would hardly be an important government project, calling for tenders and a short list of sign painters. Unfortunately, people who get seriously injured by golf balls are usually those who stop long enough to read the sign. Words are always used to assert your self-importance. Why is the All India Institute of Medical Sciences not just the Indian Institute of Medicine? Is there also then a Some Institute of Medical Sciences?advertisementIf you drive along the hills in Himachal, you will come across other sets of government signs whose language seems to have been fashioned by a frustrated, but highly moral poet. Marry Safety Divorce Speed . Then an almost Wordsworth-like We love You Enough, About Safety We Never Bluff. Or the more risque, If you love porn, at curves sound horn . In an important government department in Dehradun, the Bureau of Road and Infrastructure Poetry, grown men sit around a table to discuss their inspirations. “Aare Prakash, how’s this-If Your Bus falls in Khud, Life is Nipped in the Bud “. “Yaar, you are almost Tagore”. The other peculiar obsession with abbreviations and short forms borders on incoherence and miscommunication. A recent news story had a sentence: PMO and UPA including Delhi CM likely to be indicted by CAG in CWG. Such lazy writing presumes the reader is entirely clued into Indian politics. But a foreigner reading it may understand that a pre menstrual obstruction and a uterine pituitary ambulatory are the cause of a constriction of the aortic globulin? Humour of course has been a saviour of India’s private signage.There are enough instances of misspelling to keep you wondering HORAN PLEAS or HOWREN PLEZE before Making Pass. And the eternally enigmatic sign that hangs outside a temple in Orissa, DO NOT ENTER, WOMEN DURING MENSTURATION. A comma at the wrong place can not only alter the meaning altogether, but provoke enough women’s rights groups into action.Government road signage however generally works on the principle of ‘the more the merrier’. Outside my house is a massive directional sign so large it could be visible at high speed along a 6-lane highway; but the sign occurs along a narrow residential street where traffic moves at a pace so miserly, pedestrians are always ahead.The sign informs the driver to take a right for Malviya Nagar.The sign might as well have said London Next Right.DelhiThere are seven colonies between mine and Malviya Nagar, but there is no road information available on them. The sign for Malviya Nagar was obviously available, and needed to be planted somewhere to ensure the public felt their funds were being put to good use. On the road to the airport is a sign for the Indira Gandhi International Airport Domestic Terminal (sic).Should there then also be an Inter State Bus Terminal for Local buses? The city is filled with meaningless signage that conveys little but looks selfimportant enough to suggest that Delhi is a world-class city.The judicious use of signage ensures the road environment is not cluttered and forms as neutral a background, so the passage through it is swift and without confusion. Unfortunately, most signage is not only misleading but is a complete misinterpretation of reality. At a nearby junction is another sign with a large painting of a traffic signal indicating a red, yellow and green light with the words Stop, Get Ready and Go against each of the appropriate colours.advertisementIs this supposed to be a driving lesson, a sort of learn on the job situation, or should someone with a licence be aware of it before they take to the road? Should then there be other signs stating ‘ Turn steering to the Right for a Right turn’ and ‘To slow down use Brake’? Sadly, despite all its claims, Delhi always has the feel of a frontier town. As if everything is on trial. Testing out pedestrian bridges, road signs, new building types, cabling systems, rapid bus systems. So tentative are the steps that nothing is completed enough to be successfully tested. Bus lanes peter out into midstream traffic, signs are international looking, but misleading, new building technology is visually appealing but ceilings fall apart.In the same vein, newspaper classifieds are filled with a host of cultural pretenses. When used cars are sold it’s best to give the ad a prefix of Lady Doctor Driven, Maruti 800. If there is no lady doctor in the family then the next best is ‘Army officer used Maruti 800’. Advertisements Presumably the officer is on border duty and doesn’t get a chance to drive. The mere act of possession by a lady doctor or an army officer implies that the car has a high pedigree, from a good home. Follow this up with, ‘owner going abroad’, and you have a legitimate reason to sell the car. Most of our lies are small and white. Some cultural inhibition stops us from simply stating that ‘a 12 year old Maruti 800 that chokes and splutters could be picked up cheap’. The same holds true for matrimonials.Parents give glowing accounts of their, deviant and delinquent sons, and cloak it in language that is representative of his rightful place in society: Hindu, high caste, fair skinned male, heir to family fortune, residing in South Delhi colony, earning seven figure salary, owning own business, living abroad, pious mother, father in government service, sister settled in nearby South Delhi colony, member of a reputable club, owner of high value shares and five suits, graduate from leading national academy seeks? A boy of such pedigree should have been married by the age of 11, but the ad is so open-ended that it says nothing of value. The father’s government job could be the Prime Minister, or a coolie at the railway station, a pious mother could be the head pujari at the Laxminarayan temple, or an overly sanctimonious kerosene- crazed mother-in-law, the family fortune may refer to Reliance, or to a Bihari extortion racket, living abroad could be Japan or Bangladesh.A more realistic ad will doubtless get more hits: ill mannered and hostile boy aged 56, dark skinned, bald and with signs of leprosy, earning a two figure salary in a temporary job in a matchstick factory officially living in a rented barsati above landlord, but currently in jail for alleged rape of a minor, seeks beautiful, rich, high caste girls with large breasts and big dowry. Marutis and TVs a must.advertisementFarmhouses welcome. Box 203.- The writer is a well known architectlast_img read more

OOCL Bolsters IntraEurope Service Network

first_imgImage Courtesy: OOCLHong Kong-based container carrier Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) has added a new service to its Intra-Europe Network, the North Europe – Turkey service (NET).The new service, which started operating from Felixstowe on April 8, features four vessels in the following port rotation: Felixstowe (UK) – Hamburg (Germany) – Antwerp (Belgium) – Piraeus (Greece) – Istanbul – Izmit – Izmir (Turkey) – Salerno (Italy) – Felixstowe.OOCL said that the NET is an additional service for its Intra-Europe Network and will provide “a fixed day, weekly direct service from North Europe to Turkey.”“As one of the vessel operators, we are committed to meeting the needs of customers in this trade. The new NET product will cover all key markets and provide competitive transit times between North Europe and Istanbul, Izmit and Izmir,” OOCL informed.last_img read more

Common To Be Honored At Promise Night Gala

first_imgAmerica’s Promise Alliance, the nation’s largest network dedicated to improving the lives of children and youth, will honor five extraordinary leaders with the Promise of America Award, its highest honor, at its annual Promise Night Gala in New York City on April 18.The gala will follow Recommit to Kids | The Summit for America’s Future, a daylong convening of business, philanthropy, nonprofit, government, education and faith leaders in NYC focused on a national push to refocus the nation on the needs of young people.Promise Night honorees exemplify how leaders from business, entertainment, government, philanthropy, and the nonprofit sector each have a role in improving the lives of America’s youth.“There is no better investment of time and money than that which we make in children,” said Alma J. Powell, chair, America’s Promise. “We thank our Promise of America honorees for their extraordinary work on behalf of children and youth and ask others to join us as we recommit ourselves and our work to helping all children reach their American dream.”“Each honoree represents the best in his or her field, and each makes time to better the lives of children,” said America’s Promise President & CEO John Gomperts. “America’s Promise is proud to stand with such a committed group. Their work and advocacy on behalf of young people is exactly what we need to help more young people stay on a path to adult success.”This year’s Promise of America honorees include: • Kenneth I. Chenault, chairman and CEO, American Express Company • Common, hip-hop artist, actor, film producer, and founder of the Common Ground Foundation • Arne Duncan, managing partner, Emerson Collective • Bryan Stevenson, executive director, Equal Justice Initiative • Dorothy Stoneman, founder, YouthBuildThe Promise of America Awards honor champions who have answered the call of every American president for the past 40 years to fulfill the Five Promises for children and youth: caring adults, safe places, a healthy start, an effective education, and opportunities to serve.Audra Day, along with the Boys & Girls Harbor Choir, and Kenny G will perform during the evening event.Last year’s Promise of America Award recipients included Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO of Target Corporation; Dr. Angela Diaz, director of the Mount Sinai Adolescent Health Center; Patricia de Stacy Harrison, president and CEO of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; and Magic Johnson, chairman and CEO of Magic Johnson Enterprises.America’s Promise will present additional awards on April 18th, including the People of Promise, Promise Heroes and the Powell Legacy Awards, which recognize young adult leaders, community leaders and organizations creating change for young people, respectively.To learn more about the 20th anniversary events, please visit www.Recommit2Kids.org.last_img read more

Thomson Reuters commits US100 million for enlarged tech hub at Duncan House

first_imgTORONTO – Thomson Reuters (TSX:TRI) will spend about US$100 million to house its new technology hub at a Toronto complex that’s being built for occupation in 2021.The multinational information services company has agreed to lease all of the office space at the new Duncan House to be built at 19 Duncan Street.The multi-use complex will be able to house up to 1,500 employees for the Thomson Reuters technology hub, which was announced last year.Thomson Reuters said a year ago that it would move some corporate functions to Toronto and tap into the city’s burgeoning technology expertise.It currently expects to have hired up to 200 people this year and another 200 by the end of 2018, to be housed at the centre’s temporary Toronto site.The US$100-million commitment announced Wednesday includes both capital investments and a 12-year lease starting when occupancy begins.Allied Properties REIT (TSX:AP.UN) and Westbank have begun construction of a new building that will integrate a heritage structure.Besides about 146,000 square feet of office space, to be leased by Thomson Reuters, the complex will have retail space and 462 rental residential units.last_img read more

CRTC opens online survey about sales tactics by phone cable internet providers

first_imgGATINEAU, Que. – Canada’s telecom regulator is giving consumers until Sept. 7 to answer an online survey about sales tactics used by the country’s largest phone, cable and internet service providers.The 11-day online survey conducted by Ipsos is part of a months-long process leading to public hearings to be held by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission starting on Oct. 22.Innovation, Science and Economic Development Minister Navdeep Bains, who is responsible for telecommunications, ordered the CRTC investigation in June after media reports and direct complaints about how telecom services are sold.In particular, the inquiry wants to address complaints that prices for services may be unpredictable or higher than expected and sales messages may result in stress, confusion and frustration.The CRTC has already collected about 890 comments, mostly from individuals, since mid-July through a more formal intervention process that closes on Thursday.The bilingual survey can be found at https://ipsosasks.ca/CRTClast_img read more

Canada can avoid offending US by pursuing sectoral trade with China report

first_imgOTTAWA – Dozens of experts are urging Canada to choose a surgical, sector-by-sector approach when it comes to expanding its trading relationship with China rather than a sweeping free trade deal that could risk provoking the United States, says a new report.The Public Policy Forum paper, to be released Thursday, lays out a suggested blueprint for Canadian policy-makers at a time when Ottawa has struggled in its efforts to deepen business ties with the Asian superpower.The study will also arrive after Canada recently agreed to a free trade pact with the U.S. and Mexico, a deal that includes a controversial new clause requiring the countries to notify each other if they enter into trade talks with a “non-market” economy.The clause makes no specific mention of China, but the provision is being widely viewed as an attempt by Washington to single out Beijing.Even with these new constraints, the report advises Canada to chase several targeted arrangements covering numerous sectors ranging from agri-food, to natural resources, to education.A more-focused approach was preferred by most of the experts consulted for the report — even before the North American trade deal and the clause were announced last week. Many of them believe it would help Canada avoid the long, complicated process of hammering out a far-reaching trade agreement with a country as complex as China.“We settled on a set of recommendations built off the foundation of sectoral agreements, rather than comprehensive free trade, as the best means for realizing quick and significant gains,” reads the report, which is based on input from more than 70 experts, including business executives, government officials, environmentalists, Sinologists and former prime ministers.“A sectoral approach also provides the benefit of creating a pathway to a more diversified and growing trade portfolio for Canada that does not run afoul of the virtual veto given to our North American trading partners.”The document, the culmination of consultations over the last 18 months, argues that Canada cannot afford to ignore China’s size and rapid growth.As an example, the report said in 2000 China made up just four per cent of the global economy compared to the U.S. share of 31 per cent. Today, China accounts for 15 per cent and the U.S. 24 per cent.Ottawa must engage with China if it’s truly focused on trade diversification and on moving away from its heavy dependence on the U.S. market, the study said.For instance, it noted that 75 per cent of Canada’s merchandise goods go to the U.S. In the United Kingdom, however, less than 50 per cent of its goods go to the European Union, which is about the same size of the American market.As Canada looks to diversify, Public Policy Forum President Edward Greenspon said the consultations argued Canada can do more business with China”in such a way that should not offend the United States.”Greenspon said in an interview that 4.3 per cent of Canada’s export basket goes to China. In comparison, he said 8.4 per cent of U.S. exports go to China, which means Canada could double its exports before its engaged at the same level as the U.S.“So, there’s room for growth without provocation,” he said.The document said a minority of the participants thought the sectoral approach was not ambitious enough. But they found common ground on many points.Beyond the sector-by-sector approach, the document offered about a dozen other recommendations for Canada in its engagement with China. Here are few:— Strike a new deal on a co-operation arrangement in areas of shared global interest, including environmental protection, climate change and the governance of international institutions.— Take steps to ensure more clarity, transparency and predictability when it comes to Canada’s foreign investment regime, including national security reviews.— “Radically raise Canada’s game” in understanding and interacting with China — for all levels of government, the business community, financial sector, civil society and higher education.— Direct infrastructure spending, including financing through the Canada Infrastructure Bank, to improve inadequate transport and port facilities on the Pacific coast because the country is squandering export opportunities for industries like agri-business, forestry and energy.Follow @AndyBlatchford on Twitterlast_img read more

Fort St John RCMP launching Safe Place program to support local LGBTQ

first_imgLocal businesses and organizations are able to participate by placing a decal in their window that clearly identifies the premise as a safe haven and ally for members of the LGBTQ community.In January, Prince Rupert became the first community in Canada with an RCMP-led Safe Place program, and other detachments across B.C. have followed suit.Cpl. Francoeur said that to his knowledge, Fort St. John is the first community in Northeast B.C. to launch the program.Any businesses or organizations can sign up to participate in the Safe Place program by calling Cpl. Francoeur at the Fort St. John RCMP detachment at (250) 787-8100, or by emailing [email protected] files from The Vancouver Sun and CBC News. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Fort St. John RCMP is launching a new anti-hate crime program in support of the LGBTQ+ community in the Energetic City.Cpl. Steven Francoeur said that the local RCMP detachment will be starting a Safe Place program in Fort St. John after the program was launched by the Vancouver Police Department ahead of that city’s Pride Festival two years ago.Cpl. Francoeur explained that the Safe Place program offers anyone who feels they are in an unsafe environment a place where they will be welcomed and are able to call the police and wait for officers to arrive.last_img read more