Oxford University is now giving staff and students the option to use the gender-neutral title ‘Mx’ (pronounced ‘mux’, ‘mix’, or ‘mixter’) in official records, as an alternative to the previous gendered titles.The change, which is understood to have been introduced following consultation with OUSU and the LGBTQ Society, came into effect at the end of last term. Individuals will also have the option of giving no title at all.Current students who would prefer to adopt the gender-neutral title or use no title at all are able to change their records through their colleges or departments. Undergraduate and Postgraduate students applying for entry in 2015 will also be able to make use of the title.Rowan Davis, trans rep for Oxford University LGBTQ Society told Cherwell, “Providing an option for gender neutral titles is vital for producing a safer space for trans people.”A spokesperson for the University commented, “The University is now giving students the option to use the gender-neutral title ‘Mx’ on official administrative systems.”They continued, “The decision follows the gradual adoption of ‘Mx’ as the most commonly-recognised gender-neutral title in the UK. It is now used by the Passport service, the DVLA, many high street banks and an increasing number of universities. The University’s admissions service UCAS has also decided to introduce the ‘Mx’ option for applicants in the 2015 cycle”.‘Mx’ is the most popular gender neutral title among non-binary people. Usage of the title was given a boost when, in 2013, Brighton and Hove City Council voted to allow it on council forms, though it does not yet have widespread official recognition across the rest of the country.LGBTQ Soc trans rep Alyson Cruise remarked, “It’s taken some time, but we are really happy with how hard the University is working to improve the experience of being trans at Oxford. There are still some holdouts around but the uni as a whole is really trying.”Likewise, Oriel College LGBTQ rep Kate Bradley told Cherwell, “The introduction of Mx is good news for all gender non-binary and trans people at Oxford, but it’s also great for anyone who feels uncomfortable providing their gender in situations where it seems irrelevant. In the wake of news that Ruskin College will be providing gender-neutral toilets on campus soon, I think all of us can feel like progress is really being made”.However, some sources within LGBTQ Soc have suggested that a preferable option would be to expand the options available to students, rather than offer just one gender neutral title option.An anonymous trans student told Cherwell that it would be preferable “for the University to look at the possibility of having a blank box to be filled in” by people, so that they are able to choose their own title; there are a number of additional titles that transpeople may wish to adopt, including ‘Misc’ (from the Latin word ‘miscellus’, meaning ‘mixed’), or ‘Ind’ (short for ‘individual’).The University made headlines two years ago when it changed its dress code policy to allow people to wear non-gender specific subfusc.
Premier Foods has announced that up to 98 jobs are at risk at Hovis’ Wigan bakery, with proposals for the closure of its roll plant.The firm has undertaken a review of its morning goods business, “following a number of developments in the market”, and is proposing changes, which could affect the manufacturing site at Cale Lane, Aspull in Wigan, said a spokesperson for Premier. “These include consolidating roll manufacture into fewer sites, which would improve our competitive position overall, but which would result in the closure of our roll plant in Wigan.”The firm has now entered into a 30-day consultation period with staff members affected by the proposals, “which will, regrettably, result in redundancies”, said Premier. Hovis Wigan currently employs 530 staff.Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union organising regional secretary Ian Hodson said that with regard to the consultation period, the recent redundancies at the firm’s satellite site should also be taken into account, in addition to issues such as potential contract changes, “meaning the company must enter a 90-day consultation”.”As the firm is resisting, our members are due to take part in a ballot at Wigan opening on 26 February and closing on 5 March,” explained Hodson.Commenting on reports that the firm recently lost 60% of a major crumpet contract, Hodson said: “My understanding is that a significant loss of business has caused a review of the crumpet plant.”Premier declined to comment on any speculation over its contracts.
Congratulations moe.! The premier jam band is set to be inducted into the Syracuse Area Music Awards Hall Of Fame on March 2nd, and will celebrate with two performances – one at the awards show on March 3rd and another at the F Shed in Syracuse, NY on March 4th.The SAMMYs have recognized a number of great musicians from the Upstate New York area, including Phish drummer Jon Fishman, who was honored by the organization with a Lifetime Achievement award just last year. He talks about the honor in this interview.moe. hails from Buffalo, NY, which is about two hours West of Syracuse driving. The band will be joined by Meegan Voss, Jukin’ Bone, and Paul Case for the distinct honor of their Hall Of Fame inductions. More information can be seen in moe.’s Facebook post below.moe. has a busy year up ahead, including a number of tour dates and performances at numerous festivals, including 4 Peaks, Summer Camp, Pisgah Brewing Company’s Anniversary celebration, and, of course, the return of moe.down Music Festival. For all things moe., be sure to head to their website.
World-renowned guitarist Reeves Gabrels is gearing up for an intimate performance at Garcia’s at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, New York, this weekend. On Sunday, October 22, Reeves Gabrels & His Imaginary Friends will make its debut at the venue supported by Brooklyn hard-rock and blues quartet Lizzie and the Makers. (Tickets available here.)Gabrels joined The Cure in 2012 and is also known for his partnership with David Bowie from 1987 through 1999. A co-founder of the rock band Tin Machine featuring David Bowie, Tony Sales, and Hunt Sales, Gabrels went on to work closely with Bowie as a guitarist and co-writer for Outside (1995) and as a guitarist, co-writer, and co-producer for Earthling (1997) and Hours (1999). Gabrels also served as Bowie’s guitarist and music director across a dozen years of touring, including Bowie’s tour with Nine Inch Nails and the legendary rock icon’s 50th birthday celebration at Madison Square Garden.In 2017, Gabrels released his sixth album, Imaginary Friends Live, which sees the guitarist and vocalist supported by a collection of his superb musical colleagues. In addition to his fruitful solo career, Gabrels has previously released two improvisatory guitar-duo albums—one with Bill Nelson of Be-Bop Deluxe fame and the other with David Tronzo who currently teaches at Boston’s Berklee College of Music—and composes film, television, and video-game soundtracks. A sought-after collaborator, he has written, performed, and recorded with musicians in genres from heavy metal to hip-hop to electronica to jazz.Check out Live For Live Music’s interview with Reeves Gabrel below, and purchase tickets to his upcoming performance on Sunday at Garcia’s at The Capitol Theatre here.Live For Live Music: As a prolific musician with credits spanning genres from metal and hip-hop to what you’re best known for in your time with Bowie and The Cure, what can we expect from your upcoming show at Garcia’s?Reeves Gabrels: You will hear an update of the rock-power-trio format that stretches from the Johnny Burnette Trio to Jimi Hendrix and Cream to Rush and The Police to Hüsker Dü and Dinosaur Jr. Reeves Gabrels & His Imaginary Friends play rock songs with vocals, guitar, bass and drums that are designed to grow and change from night to night. Our sets include music that I have written for and with my Imaginary Friends, along with one or two unusual blues or old-school R&B covers that we’ve radically rearranged to suit our power trio format. There is a strong element of improvisation in our playing that makes us sound like us and no one else.An odd thing that happened when I stopped working with David Bowie was a reviewer wrote of my second solo album—Ulysses (Della Notte) (2000)—that he could hear everything I stole from Bowie. The writer then listed Tin Machine songs, such as “Bus Stop” and “I Can’t Read”, both songs I co-wrote, and mentioned albums like Earthling and Hours, albums I co-produced with songs I co-wrote. I find that more amusing now than I did at the time.So, listeners will hear trace elements of music they like by artists I have worked with through the years without realizing that I was involved at a writing level and production level with those artists. What many people discover is that some of my music was in their heads all along.L4LM: Since you’ve done so much work producing and collaborating with other artists, how does it feel to front your own trio and does your approach or attitude differ in any way?RG: Every band and performance situation is different. It is very important to figure out the dynamics in each new group of people. And I had played in bands for years, many of them in greater Boston, before I began to work with Bowie or The Cure. No matter the situation though, the key is to respect the music, play your ass off, and not be a jerk.When singing out front with my own band, I draw on what I learned from being on stage or in the studio with David Bowie, Paul Rodgers, Chuck D, Ozzy, Trent Reznor, Mick Jagger, and, of course, Robert Smith. Though what I mostly learned is that I will never be the singers they are, I always have their examples in mind and heart while using my own voice. Conversely, it’s by singing and playing guitar with my own band that I have learned what a singer needs from the supporting band, so I have brought those lessons into my playing with others.L4LM: What’s the best piece of advice you ever got from David Bowie?RG: Most advice shared between friends is meant to stay there. One from David that I am willing to share is this: “The only thing fame is good for is getting a better table at a restaurant.”
Acclaimed writer Kenneth Womack will release his latest book on The Beatles when Solid State: The Story of Abbey Road and the End of the Beatles arrives this October. The book will look to help celebrate the 50th anniversary of the band’s Abbey Road studio album in 2019.Related: The Beatles Share Previously Unreleased Early Acoustic Take Of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”According to the book’s announcement via press release, Solid State will look to offer the most definitive account yet of the writing, recording, mixing, and reception of Abbey Road, which was initially released in September 1969. The 288-page hardcover book will be Womack’s latest publication on the famous British rock band. Previous books penned by Womack include The Beatles Encyclopedia: Everything Fab Four (2014), The Cambridge Companion to the Beatles (2009), Long and Winding Roads: The Evolving Artistry of the Beatles (2007), and Reading the Beatles: Cultural Studies, Literary Criticism, and the Fab Four (2006), just to name a few. Womack will look to share the creative dynamics between the band and their longtime producer George Martin, along with his team of recording engineers. Speaking of which, the book will also feature a forward written by Alan Parsons, who worked as an assistant engineer on the album. Parsons would go on to engineer Pink Floyd‘s The Dark Side of the Moon psych-rock masterpiece.Solid State is scheduled to arrive on October 18th via Cornell University Press. Click here for more info.
NEW YORK (AP) — A former CIA software engineer charged with leaking government secrets to WikiLeaks says he’s held in solitary confinement in an area of a jail where inmates are treated like “caged animals.” Joshua Schulte asked a Manhattan federal judge Tuesday to find that the conditions imposed on him for the last two years at the Metropolitan Correctional Center are unconstitutional. Schulte is held under rules often used against terrorism defendants to prevent them from communicating with others. He says he’s confined to a freezing cell where bright lights are on 24 hours a day. A message seeking comment was sent to the federal Bureau of Prisons and the Department of Justice.
A $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture will allow researchers at the University of Georgia to examine the minutiae of cattle and fescue microbiome interaction to find targets that will help mitigate the effects of fescue toxicosis, a forage-related condition that costs the U.S. beef industry more than $1 billion each year.Fescue toxicosis, which has long been a problem for U.S. and South American cattle producers, can cause digestive and reproductive problems including reduced calving rates, reduced weight gain, and foot and leg problems in cattle.The grant project, funded by the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, is being led by College of Veterinary Medicine Professor Nikolay Filipov in collaboration with College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Associate Professor Todd Callaway of the Department of Animal and Dairy Science and Professor Nicholas Hill of the Department of Crop and Soil Sciences, in partnership with Associate Professor Garrett Suen of the University of Wisconsin and Professor Dean Jones of Emory University.“If you are raising steers for meat, a 20-30% decrease in weight gain or a 30-40% decrease in calving rates translates to major monetary losses,” Filipov said. Fescue toxicosis can also affect other grazing animals, including horses and sheep, although UGA’s research focuses on cattle. “Various approaches have been attempted to mitigate it. What we are trying to do is characterize the disease —which is very complex — globally,” said Filipov, a member of the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology in the College of Veterinary Medicine. “We are looking at multiple levels of the gut microbiome of cattle to see how they metabolize all of the different molecules of fescue to characterize those and, more importantly, how those interact with the bacteria that are part of the cattle’s GI tract. The overall idea is that we may be able to come up with more specific ideas of types of management strategies or treatment approaches for the disease that can’t be found with more simplistic approaches.”This research is important to cattle producers because Georgia is located in what is referred to as the “Fescue Belt” — a 1,000-mile long, 400-mile deep swath of the U.S. that is home to about 25% of the nation’s beef cows. In this region, fescue is the most widely used forage grass because it is easy to establish, has a high drought tolerance and has a long grazing season. However, fescue contains an endophyte — a fungus that lives within the plant — that gives the grass desirable attributes but produces alkaloids that are toxic to animals who graze on it, a defense mechanism meant to prevent overgrazing. While endophyte strains that do not produce toxic alkaloids have been identified, it is not feasible to completely remove the toxic endophyte-containing grasses from the environment, Filipov said.Current management practices, such as preventing pregnant cattle from grazing late in gestation, implementing rotational grazing and incorporating dietary supplements, have had limited success in managing fescue toxicosis, Filipov said.“We would like to come up with a solution based on whole-animal and animal-plant-endophyte approaches, so we can manipulate the many things that contribute to fescue toxicity, both on the plant side and the animal side,” he said.Field research will be performed at the J. Phil Campbell Sr. Research and Education Center in Watkinsville, Georgia, where personnel under the leadership of its superintendent, Eric Elsner, have been very supportive and accommodating of this fescue toxicosis research team.“The idea is to determine what the toxic endophyte causes in terms of changing the composition of the grass, and we will measure the bacteria and fungi that are present and the metabolites produced when cattle ingest it,” Filipov said.Suen, a microbiologist, and Callaway, a microbiologist and animal nutrition expert, will examine the gut microbiota of cattle used in the study to understand the effect of microbe-host interactions caused by the alkaloids.“The metabolome is a combination of what the microbiome does to feedstuffs and what the animal does to feedstuffs along with the end products of the microbial fermentation. We don’t know if there is a population in the gut that can detoxify these chemicals or turn it into something that can be used for growth while mitigating the detrimental effects. We don’t know what to look for yet, but that is the puzzle of the microbiome and the purpose of this research,” Callaway said.For more information on the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, visit vet.uga.edu. For information on the Department of Animal and Dairy Science, visit ads.caes.uga.edu.
By Dialogo March 25, 2011 The U.S. Army is beginning mission equipment upgrade modifications to its fleet of OH-58 Kiowa Warrior scout aircraft in an effort to build a new, high-tech “F” model helicopter designed with improved avionics, better sensors and stepped-up overall performance capability, service officials said. The first “F” model flight is slated for next year, said Lt. Col. Scott Rauer, product manager, Kiowa Warrior. Overall, the Army plans to acquire 368 “F” model OH-58s, an aircraft which comes to life through a series of technical upgrades and changes to the current “D” model Kiowa. Today, 94 Kiowa Warrior scout helicopters have been busily performing a range of crucial missions in Iraq and Afghanistan to include light attack missions, general reconnaissance, improvised explosive device detection and convoy escort missions, Rauer said. “It’s the highest demand rotary-wing aircraft in Army aviation. It flies more than 90 hours a month; about seven times the normal usage rate,” he added. The “F” model Kiowa upgrade, which will ensure the aircraft’s service life through 2025, includes a host of technical upgrades being performed by an Army government design house at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, and a handful of its industry partners to include Bell Helicopter, Honeywell and Rolls Royce. The thrust of the improvements center around a Cockpit and Sensor Upgrade Program, or CASUP, which improves the sensors and moves them to the nose of the aircraft, Rauer explained. The new sensor, called the AAS-53 Common Sensor Payload, includes cutting-edge sensing technologies such as an advanced infrared camera, a color Electro-Optical camera and an image intensifier similar to what is used by Night Vision goggles, Rauer said. The sensors are engineered to work together with laser designators and image trackers to pinpoint targets on the battlefield. “This is a major leap ahead in situational awareness for the crew. The Common Sensor Payload does bring fusion technology where it can merge imagery. With this sensor, you can fuse imagery together to get the best picture,” Rauer said. Moving the sensor to the nose, which involves removing the mast-mounted sight, which currently stands on top of the “D” model Kiowa, requires the transmission mounting structures to be redesigned, Rauer explained. “You’ve got to be able to pass the rotor vibrations cleanly to the rest of the aircraft,” he said. The “F” model Kiowa will be outfitted with next-generation cockpit technologies called Control and Display Subsystem, version 5, Rauer said. “This brings advanced processing power, more memory and throughput, full color graphics, and dual-independent advanced moving maps,” Rauer explained. The improved cockpit avionics include an increased capacity to store and process key digital information. The “F” model cockpit will include a Force Battle Command Brigade and Below, or FBCB2 display screen. Later versions of the “F” model aircraft will include a faster, more high-tech Blue Force Tracker 2 for improved battle situational awareness. The aircraft will also be built with a dual-channel full-authority digital engine-controller to ensure the engine operates at its required power level regardless of the environment and the various demands placed on the aircraft, Rauer said. The OH-58 is configured with what is called Level 2 Manned-Unmanned teaming, or L2MUM – which means that the pilots in the cockpit can view feeds from nearby unmanned aircraft systems in real time. In terms of protection, the Kiowa Warrior is configured with protective ballistic floor armor and the Common Missile Warning System, or CMWS, which can shoot off flares to divert incoming missiles, Rauer said.
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A year ago, Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano joined U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) in Washington D.C. to lobby federal officials for a much-needed ocean outfall pipe at Bay Park Sewage Treatment Plant in East Rockaway.Fast forward to today, the county is still fighting for the funding—estimated to be between $546 and $700 million—and is also trying to wrap its ahead around why $150 million in supposed federally approved funding for a nitrogen-removal system at the embattled plant never made its way into Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s state budget for this year.“We need some more financial assistance from our federal and state governments,” Norma Gonsalves (R-East Meadow), the presiding officer of the Nassau legislature, told reporters Wednesday during a press conference at her Mineola office. She added that she does not see a scenario in which the fiscally-strapped county could help pay for the cost of both projects.FEMA has already granted $810 million to rebuild and harden the plant, but Gonsalves called on Cuomo and Schumer to follow through on earlier efforts to secure additional funding for an outfall pipe that would extend into the Atlantic Ocean, effectively discharging effluent away from vulnerable waterways. Currently, effluent from Bay Park is dumped daily into Reynolds Channel, which connects to the Western Bays. As a result, Marine life and marshlands—which act as natural barriers and protect shorelines from erosion—are suffering from high levels of nitrogen in the water.Gonsalves said Nassau deserves its fair share of tax dollars, citing a recent study by the business advocacy group Long Island Association (LIA), which found that LI gives the state and federal government an estimated $28 billion more than it gets in return.That amount of money “would really fund 40 outfall pipes,” Gonsalves said, adding, “We need more of those tax dollars here in Nassau County.”An army of local lawmakers, environmentalists and state officials, have been calling on the federal government to allocate funding for the outfall pipe for more than a year, to no unveil. Last May, FEMA told the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation that it would not fund the project. That came after an aggressive lobbying campaign by local officials.Gonsalves said it was “disconcerting” when she read that Cuomo’s budget does not contain the $150 million thought to have been approved to fund a nitrogen removal system for the plant, which serves a half-million Nassau residents.Just days before the second anniversary of Sandy last October, Schumer released a list of all the projects that had been approved by the federal government, totaling $17 billion. Among them was a nitrogen removal project for Bay Park, paid for with a Community Development Block Grant, funded by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.On Oct. 28, Schumer visited the plant with HUD Secretary Julian Castro and highlighted recovery efforts at the plant. A press release announcing the visit said the tour would have a “specific focus on nitrogen removal” and noted that the plant “will receive hundreds of millions of dollars in federal Sandy relief aid, including funding though HUD’s Community Development Block grant program.”But, as lawmakers recently discovered, funding for that project was missing from the state budget.Brian Nevin, Mangano’s chief spokesman and his senior policy advisor, said in an emailed statement that commitments were made for the nitrogen removal system’s funding.“We continue to work with our federal and state partners to secure the funding for an ocean outfall pipe,” he said.Schumer’s office did not immediately return a call for comment as of press time. Neither did Cuomo’s office.Meanwhile, Gonsalves hopes to hold her first hearing on the issue in March. At the press conference, she said the two projects are vital to the future of the county.“Any legacy we leave should be an environment that provides for a clean and safe place for our young people to grow up in,” Gonsavles said.
continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr The initial $349 billion pool for emergency loans for small businesses derailed by the coronavirus pandemic has run dry as Republicans and Democrats squabble over how to replenish the relief program.The Treasury Department and Small Business Administration (SBA) have tapped the entirety of funding allotted for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which offers forgivable loans to small businesses intended to keep workers on payroll and small firms from going under.“The SBA is currently unable to accept new applications for the Paycheck Protection Program based on available appropriations funding. Similarly, we are unable to enroll new PPP lenders at this time,” the SBA said in a statement Thursday morning.The SBA also said that the $10 billion Congress appropriated for Economic Injury Disaster Loans had dried up. The program was meant to get fast cash to businesses, providing them with a $10,000 advance within just a few days of application for loans of up to $2 million.