National / International News

Retiring officer redundancy pay row

BBC - Tue, 2014-07-22 01:00
A council is criticised for paying one its senior officers a redundancy package after he said he was going to retire.

Long-term unemployed suffer shaky re-employment

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-07-22 01:00

Even though the economy is improving, there are still about 3 million Americans who have been out of work for six months or more. Plus, research indicates that the longer they are out, the tougher it will be for them to get back into the workforce. Making matters worse: when they do find work, it often doesn't last.

Lori Barkley Struckman knows what that's like. At the end of 2011, she lost her job as an office administrator. For the next two years, she bounced around jobs that were temporary or part-time.

"I had five different jobs. But nothing full-time," she says.

Struckman finally landed a full-time position as an office administrator at a Twin Cities law firm earlier this year. Her rocky road to recovery would not surprise researchers like Alan Krueger, a professor of economics at Princeton University and former White House chief economist.

"The long-term unemployed, when they do find work, it's often inconsistent, it's often part-time, they often find a job that doesn't last very long," says Krueger.

Krueger and fellow researchers looked at government surveys of Americans who said they'd been out of work for six months or longer at some point between 2008 and 2012. When those individuals were surveyed again more than a year later, only 36 percent had landed work. Of that group, only 11 percent had steady, full-time jobs.

Krueger says a lot of these folks end up suffering the same setbacks, and unsteady employment, as new workers.

"If you look at workers just starting out, a lot of the jobs they find don't work out, they're transitory, it's a mismatch," he says. "They don't get along with the employer or their skills aren't right for the job."

And sometimes the stress of  having been out of the workforce for a long time persists, making it hard to hold onto a new job. 

"There's a lot of spiralling of all sorts of things, trouble with the children, trouble with finances, which affects every piece of your life. Do you still have health insurance? Were you able to keep your house? All those things are so stressful; you're just treading water," says Mary White, a job counselor with a nonprofit called HIRED in St. Paul.

Lori Barkley Struckman is familiar with some of those stresses. A layoff she suffered a decade ago, well before her more recent jobless spell, coincided with her divorce. When she returned to work back then, she was easily distracted.

"You're still thinking about all the other turmoil that's going on in your life. It's hard for you to concentrate. So that is a real task to just make yourself go, 'Okay you're here to work. Give it up,'" she says.

Faced with poor job prospects or additional layoffs, many long-term unemployed give up looking for work. Krueger's collaborator, Judd Cramer, a doctoral student in economics at Princeton University, says the expiration of extended unemployment benefits has contributed to that trend.

"We've seen the rate at which the long-term unemployed have exited the labor market has risen," Cramer says. 

VIDEO: Scientists survey jellyfish after boom

BBC - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:52
More and more jellyfish are being spotted on the UK's coastline during the summer months, and now scientists have decided to try and find out why.

'Foreigners' killed in Kabul attack

BBC - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:50
A suicide bomber outside Kabul airport kills at least one Afghan and at least three foreign security guards, officials say.

Kerry's Aim In Egypt: First, Get Israel And Hamas To Cease Fire

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

Secretary of State John Kerry is in Cairo trying to help forge a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas.

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Energy Concerns Complicate Potential EU Action Against Russia

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

Renee Montagne talks to Anton La Guardia, who covers the European Union for The Economist, about the possibility of deep EU sanctions against Russia at Tuesday's foreign ministers meeting.

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Other Cities Poach Police From Detroit's Low-Wage Force

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

From Toledo to Houston, cities are courting Detroit cops, who are seen as battle-tested from routinely dealing with high crime rates — and fed up from years of low pay and cuts in benefits.

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Some Food Companies Are Quietly Dumping GMO Ingredients

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

Many mainstream companies are creating GMO-free foods, but they're not publicizing the changes. Meanwhile, some are also fighting state initiatives that would require them to label GMOs ingredients.

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Violence Flares In Libya, Leaving Main Airport In Ruins

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

Militias in Libya spent the past week battling for control of the main airport in Tripoli, leaving much of it in ruins and dozens dead. Steve Inskeep gets the latest from The Guardian's Chris Stephen.

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Despite Growing Anger, EU Nations May Balk At Russian Sanctions

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

Foreign ministers meeting Tuesday in Brussels are threatening deep sanctions against Russia over the Malaysia Airlines crash. But some nations might hesitate because of their economic ties to Russia.

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Rubio: U.S. Cannot Admit All Children Seeking Asylum

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio tells NPR the nation can't "absorb" all migrants fleeing violence and must secure its own border first. He dismissed potential 2016 rival Hillary Clinton as old news.

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Before Snowden: The Whistleblowers Who Tried To Lift The Veil

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

Unless you have documents, nobody listens. It's a bitter lesson learned by former NSA officials who tried to work within the system to expose what they considered unconstitutional programs.

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Ebola Is A Deadly Virus — But Doctors Say It Can Be Beaten

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

There is no cure for Ebola. But doctors are able to treat the virus successfully, raising hope that the outbreak that began in West Africa in March will eventually be brought under control.

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Teens Say Looks Can Be Liberating Despite Fashion Police

NPR News - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:44

An NPR poll finds that stressed-out American adults commonly feel that their appearance contributes to their anxiety. But how do teens experience stress over their appearance?

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VIDEO: Could you beat Usain Bolt in a race?

BBC - Tue, 2014-07-22 00:06
Engineers are making it possible for spectators to race against the world's fastest man.

'Unacceptable delays' in patient's care

BBC - Mon, 2014-07-21 23:44
"No sense of urgency" in a 67-year-old cancer patient's care are admitted by Aneurin Bevan University Health Board.

Typhoon Rammasun strikes Vietnam

BBC - Mon, 2014-07-21 22:45
Typhoon Rammasun has killed at least 11 people in Vietnam and several people remain missing, according to local media.

Ukraine rebels give up 'black boxes'

BBC - Mon, 2014-07-21 22:44
Rebels in eastern Ukraine have handed over two flight-data recorders from the downed MH17 plane to Malaysian officials.

Software uni to meet skills shortage

BBC - Mon, 2014-07-21 22:37
Plans to set up Wales' first software university are being prepared by businesses concerned about a skill shortage in hi-tech industries.
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