Unemployment rate increases in Northeast B.C.

first_imgThe unemployment rate jumped .07 per cent in October in Northeast B.C.The rate moved up to 6.2 per cent from 5.5 per cent in September and August. According to B.C. stats, approximately 39,400 people were employed in the region this October.  In October 2014, the unemployment rate was to low to measure with 38,600 working.- Advertisement -Across the country, the economy added 44,000 net new jobs in October.  That increase pushed the unemployment rate down to 7.0 per cent from 7.1 in September.In B.C., the rate decreased slightly to 6.2 per cent from 6.3 per cent in September.last_img read more

One million jobs in four years

first_imgCage assistants Moeketsi Momlekoa andNdlaka Mtano at the shaft at Harmony Gold Mine in Welkom, Free State. The Expanded Public Works Programme aims to give the jobless short-term work that will train them in the skills they need tofind permanent employment. (Image:Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com.For more photos, visit the image library.)Janine ErasmusThe Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP), set up by the South African government in 2004 to fight poverty by using existing government budgets to create jobs in labour-intensive projects, has reached one of its major goals a full year ahead of schedule – it has created over a million new job opportunities.In his State of the Nation address in 2003 President Thabo Mbeki announced the new initiative, aimed at drawing at least 1-million jobless people into productive work between 2004 and 2009. Of those, 40% would be women, 30% would be youth and 2% would be disabled.The EPWP arose out of the 2003 Growth and Development Summit, which explored the causes of unemployment. The programme is the major instrument of the Department of Public Works’ (DPW) poverty alleviation strategy, working as a bridge between South Africa’s formal and informal economies.The EPWP has two major components: creating employment using labour-intensive methods, and giving people skills they can use to find jobs when their work in the EPWP is done.Although the projects have a limited lifespan, the main focus is on skills development and access to work, which allows the previously unemployed to take their first steps into the job market.Making an impactIn her annual budget speech in parliament in May 2008, Minister of Public Works Thoko Didiza said the target of a million jobs had been reached by the end of April. Exactly 1 077 801 work opportunities had been created, way ahead of the March 2009 deadline.The EPWP had also surpassed its targets for women and youth, who made up 47% and 40% respectively of those employed.Didiza cited examples of the impact the EPWP has had on the lives of ordinary South Africans. One is Samuel Mangena of Limpopo, a former farmworker who, with the help of the EPWP, brought two acres of land under cultivation, growing tomatoes and other crops. He is now so successful he is able to employ six workers full-time and another 10 seasonally. “Such a daring spirit of entrepreneurial adventure should be an inspiration to the country,” said Didiza.She also mentioned the Siyazenzela waste management project, which combines job creation with care for the environment. In the programme, modelled after one used in Curituba, Brazil, poor households collect garbage from their neighbourhoods and exchange it for food vouchers and groceries. Piloted in KwaZulu-Natal, the programme is to be rolled out to other provinces.“The majority of participants in the Expanded Public Works Programme have earned income during their involvement,” said Didiza, “which made it possible for them to support their families and invest in entrepreneurial activities that have become sustainable after they exited the programme. This has been possible because of the limited training they received while working in the various projects.”She highlighted the Kamoso Awards, initiated in 2007 to reward municipalities, provinces, and other public bodies that showed excellence in implementing the infrastructure component of EPWP in their regions. It was later expanded to include the economy, environment, and social interventions. The awards were presented in July 2008.“The EPWP has been very effective in reaching the target of 1-million work opportunities a year ahead of schedule,” the minister said. “However, we recognise that given the state of unemployment in the country, the EPWP needs to be significantly bigger.”Because of this, says EPWP chief director Ismail Akhalwaya, the programme’s targets may be revised, one of which may be the creation of 1.5-million job opportunities every year by 2014.Phase twoThe second phase of the EPWP, set to launch in March 2009, will include targets up to 2014. The DPW has studied similar systems in Argentina and India and is hoping to introduce some of those methods into phase two.The Indian National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, which guarantees 100 days of work annually to at least one unskilled and unemployed person in a rural household where no one has a job, is one of the strategies studied by the DPW. This and other initiatives were on the agenda at the International Labour Organisation’s 12th regional seminar on promoting labour-intensive practices, held in November 2007 in Durban.The use of legislation to address unemployment is still a much-discussed topic, with some experts saying it could increase social dependence and corruption. On the other hand, those in favour argue that the legal route would overcome current objections regarding the temporary nature of EPWP jobs, and would cost up to R30-billion annually in wages compared with the R3-billion currently disbursed – making a far greater impact on poverty.Also under consideration is the potential contribution to the EPWP of non-state institutions such as NGOs and community-based organisations, as well as the private sector and its large number of corporate social responsibility projects.The Business Trust, an association of local companies that works with government to create jobs and provide skills training, already participates in the EPWP, committing R100-million for the programme’s first five years.The EPWP is specifically looking at proposals that will halve the number of unemployed by 2014, said Didiza, in accordance with the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. Under this international programme governments and organisations around the world are working to reduce poverty and provide unemployment for all, including women and the youth, by 2015.Unfortunately, only 14% of EPWP beneficiaries have found permanent jobs afterwards. But Akhalwaya says this problem will be addressed. “The EPWP is an ongoing programme,” he said, “and for phase two we will make the necessary changes to its design, including training and exit strategies, that will improve its ability to deliver on its objectives.”Poor-quality training is another problem the second phase will attempt to solve. “We are using the remainder of the period to address some of the challenges, and to lay out a much larger programme for the next five years,” he said.Do you have queries or comments about this article? Email Janine Erasmus at janinee@mediaclubsouthafrica.com.Related articlesSocial development in South AfricaDrive to create a million jobsUseful linksExpanded Public Works ProgrammeDepartment of Public WorksThe Business TrustMillennium Development Goalslast_img read more

Smart city success requires road maps, not free association

first_imgSurveillance at the Heart of Smart Cities Municipal governments overwhelmed with the endless choices for smart city projects need to take a breath and plan ahead.This is the advice from Tormod Larsen, CTO of ExteNet. His Illinois-based company provides mobile connectivity via distributed networks.He says that cities are being confounded the over-abundance of grandiose smart city projects to choose from.“Part of the challenge is the cities basically go out and they want to do everything,” said Larsen. “They want a network that does gunshot detection, they want free Wi-Fi, they want meter reading, they want environmental sensors, they want information screens and they want all these different things and they want it for free.”He says the key is for cities to begin by developing a road map of desired services and then prioritize them as to which will come online earlier and which later.This enables cities to plan out and build network infrastructure that can achieve the long-term smart city vision, even if some components are targeted for years in the future.“If you have the network in place, then you at least have a base to build on,” said Larsen. “If you don’t have a network, then it’s a pipe dream.”“If you’re only focusing on different types of services and don’t take a step back and say ‘ok let me first get the network in place that has the capability of support some of these high priority services’ – and know that’s the backbone, the fundament of making it happen – you have a hard time getting off the ground,” he adds.Changing the mindsetBesides the early infrastructure planning, cities also need to also reconfigure the mindset of city planning departments towards smart city technology. Specifically, he says it is important for municipal officials to focus on agile development and not stick to the old fashioned way of doing things.“Sometimes the biggest obstacles we have to being able to build fiber or attach equipment on a pole or a streetlamp, either for a general service perspective or from a connectivity perspective, is the municipality itself,” said Larsen. “We’re hopeful they start seeing the value and the need in having a connected city or the connectivity of IoT, and that that might change.”“Where we come in today, a lot of municipalities say the only value you bring us is how much you’re willing to pay us…rather than understanding we’re coming in to offer services to the population and the city,” he says. For Self-Driving Systems, Infrastructure and In… Tags:#ExteNet#Internet of Things#IoT#Smart Cities How Connected Communities Can Bolster Your Busi…center_img Donal Power How IoT Will Play an Important Role in Traffic … Related Posts last_img read more

Rotator cuff repair- series

first_imgNormal anatomyThe rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that form a cuff over the shoulder. These muscles and tendons hold the arm in its “ball and socket” joint and are involved in essentially all shoulder motions.IndicationsThe role of the tendons is to hold the powerful shoulder muscles to the shoulder and arm bones. The tendons can be torn from overuse or injury.ProcedureEither through an open incision or using small instruments through tiny incisions (arthroscopy), the tendon is repaired with sutures. If the tendon is separated from the bone, small rivets called suture anchors are used to attach the tendon back to the bone.AftercareSurgery to repair a torn rotator cuff is usually very successful at relieving pain in the shoulder. The procedure is less predictable at returning strength to the shoulder. Recovery time often depends on the extent of the tear.Review Date:6/30/2011Reviewed By:Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine; and C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Assistant Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Dept of Orthopaedic Surgery. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc.last_img read more