How AirAsia boss Tony Fernandes shrugged off the global recession Show Comments ▼ More From Our Partners Police Capture Elusive Tiger Poacher After 20 Years of Pursuing the Huntergoodnewsnetwork.orgA ProPublica investigation has caused outrage in the U.S. this weekvaluewalk.comNative American Tribe Gets Back Sacred Island Taken 160 Years Agogoodnewsnetwork.orgFlorida woman allegedly crashes children’s birthday party, rapes teennypost.comAstounding Fossil Discovery in California After Man Looks Closelygoodnewsnetwork.org‘Neighbor from hell’ faces new charges after scaring off home buyersnypost.comBrave 7-Year-old Boy Swims an Hour to Rescue His Dad and Little Sistergoodnewsnetwork.orgKiller drone ‘hunted down a human target’ without being told tonypost.comRussell Wilson, AOC among many voicing support for Naomi Osakacbsnews.com Tags: NULL Sunday 5 September 2010 9:36 pm IF Tony Fernandes, the chief executive of pioneering low-cost carrier AirAsia, ever suffered from shyness as child, he is certainly cured of it now.The UK-educated Malaysian entrepreneur, who founded the short haul airline in 2001 and its longhaul sister AirAsia X six years later, dominates the meeting room of his West End PR agency with his loud voice and breezy manner.But then you need to be able to hold your own in the sort of company he travels in. The morning City A.M. spoke to him he had just had breakfast with Sir Martin Sorrell, the boss of WPP and the world’s most influential advertising executive; and he regularly hobnobs with the rich and powerful. Fernandes, 46, bought the Lotus Formula One team last September, and has since made a bet with Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson, who runs his own Virgin Racing outfit. Whoever finishes behind the other at the end of the season must serve as a cabin crew member on the rival airline. Fernandes, who actually began his career on one of Branson’s cable TV stations in the late 1980s, says: “I have already told him to start shaving his legs. We don’t like cabin crew with hairy legs on AirAsia.”One gamble Fernandes, who has a £230m fortune, lost out on earlier this year was his bid to buy West Ham United football club, which was sold to British businessmen David Gold and David Sullivan. Fernandes has moved on from that and is currently making headlines because last month he confirmed his intention to float longhaul outfit AirAsia X in the second half of next year. Parent company AirAsia has a 16 per cent stake in that business. Currently AirAsia has 86 planes and average fares of £25 to more than 100 routes including Malaysia, Thailand, China, the Philippines and Macau. AirAsia X has 11 planes and average return fares of around £300 on routes such as Hong Kong and London. Both airlines share 7,000 staff and are based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Fernandes is chief executive of AirAsia, which itself floated in 2004, and a board director of its longhaul sister.AirAsia posted a 2009 net profit of RM 549m (£112m) on sales up 11.5 per cent at RM3,179m (£648m). The airline bucked the 3.5 per cent fall the industry suffered globally last year, as it launched 12 new routes and saw passenger numbers grow 24 per cent to 22.7m. Smaller but no less successful AirAsia X posted a net profit of RM87m on sales of RM720m. The longhaul carrier is currently completing a RM100m rights issue to be able to finance the running of its own operations in advance of the separation.Fernandes says the reason for the flotation is because he is seeing “a bit of contamination” between the way the two airlines are run, and this needs to be prised apart.He says: “The patterns of the pilots and cabin crew are different on shorthaul and long haul airlines. Both airlines need differing amounts of ground crew, because there is less luggage in the hold on shorthaul. Also the approach to marketing is different on both carriers.”Fernandes says AirAsia X will float in Malaysia and is considering a secondary listing in London or New York. He will not say how much of the business will be sold to outside investors, but he does say AirAsia’s 16 per cent stake in the longhaul outfit will be “treated as an investment” and will be sold down over time. Intriguingly, Branson’s Virgin Atlantic also holds a 20 per cent stake in AirAsia X. Fernandes will begin to look for banks to handle the sale towards the end of the year.However, he does not want or predict a full separation of the two airlines. He says they will still share the same website, but more importantly he says that he sees a “star chamber” of four executives, including himself, who will sit on a board that will span both carriers.Fernandes says that what is happening at his carriers reflects a polarisation in the airline business brought about by the 2008 financial crisis.He says airlines are often “destroyers of capital”. And if you take into account the scores of airlines around the world that have failed in the last two years – from Oasis in Hong Kong to Flyglobespan in Scotland – it is hard to disagree with him. He adds: “Airlines have to choose what they want to be, either shorthaul or longhaul. You have to focus on what you are offering. Two of the world’s most successful airlines, Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific, are basically longhaul airlines.”The airline boss continues: “By contrast British Airways runs four businesses. They have first class, business class, premium economy and economy. And that takes different levels of service and marketing for each.” Fernandes adds: “BA should sell off its shorthaul operations. The industry is separating out into simply premium and low cost airlines, and it takes a lot of focus to do one of those well and make money from it.”He also thinks that banks should take the bulk of the blame for the financial crisis, backs a Glass-Steagall style reform of finance and says that government response to bank regulation around the world is patchy.Fernandes says: “Banks should be there to build businesses, and that means sensible lending. Too much cash was put into instruments like derivatives. Governments should split up banks into commercial and investment arms.”He adds: “Asian banks have learned their lessons from their own banking crisis in 1997, when there was a lot of free and easy money flying around. But this time around they did a superb job.”Fernandes thinks that the EU is introducing prudent banking reforms, but adds that he thinks the US “has still not got to grips with their big banks”.The airline chief also argues that the industry is beginning to look up. He says: “We are in a very sweet spot. In terms of budget travel people are trading down towards us. But across the industry as a whole the Icelandic volcano shows that people can’t live without aviation. People want to travel. TV has made the world smaller. There is a lot of talk about CO2 emissions but cars emit out a lot more carbon. The urge to travel is strong.”There are not many in the airline industry who would see the Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull volcano, which grounded planes across Europe and the Atlantic at a cost of hundreds of millions of pounds, as good news for air travel. However, for Fernandes the glass is never less than half full. His beginnings in the business demonstrate that.He worked in the finance department of Virgin’s Music Box and Super Channel in the late 1980s. Fernandes then moved on to become the south east Asian regional vice-president for Warner Music for nine years, until 2001, but then he struck out on his own after becoming disillusioned with the Time Warner’s and AOL merger.He saw Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou, a fellow London School of Economics alumni, talking about his easyJet airline on TV and thought he could replicate the idea in Asia. He brought together two partners, remortgaged his house for £250,000 and bought AirAsia from the Malaysian government for RM1, taking on RM40m of debt. The airline then comprised of just two ageing Boeing 737-300 jets, with the deal being signed just three days before 9/11, terrible timing for any airline.“I was philosophical about it,” smiles Fernandes. “The business could only go up from there.”The airline quickly followed the classic budget aircraft model of lean staff, one-hour airport turnarounds, and high plane usage (12 hours in the air per day instead of the more usual seven). Remarkably, it made a profit at the end of its first year.“We had to make money, because we did not have any other cash to fall back on,” he says. The airline carried on adding routes and passengers and grew to become a dominant player in the region.As the airline industry continues to polarise and change, and Asian firms continue their global ascent, we are bound to see far more of the loud, brash and confident Tony Fernandes. Europe’s remaining legacy carriers had better watch out.CV | TONY FERNANDESAge: 46; born in Kuala LumpurWork: Virgin’s Music Box and Super Channel where he worked as an auditor and later financial controller: 1987-1989; Warner Music: 1992-2001, leaving as south east Asian regional vice-president; chief executive of AirAsia: 2001 to present.Education: Epsom College: 1977-1983 (“It was like a borstal”); London School of Economics: 1984-1987, read accounting. Family: Married, with two children. Hobbies: Music, has about 8,000 iTunes tracks: “Most of it is R&B, but I like most stuff except country and western.” A West Ham fan since 1975. Share whatsapp KCS-content whatsapp
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Here’s how I’d invest in shares today to achieve financial freedom Enter Your Email Address Peter Stephens | Wednesday, 6th January, 2021 Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee. “This Stock Could Be Like Buying Amazon in 1997” Image source: Getty Images. Click here to claim your copy now — and we’ll tell you the name of this Top US Share… free of charge! Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Shares An uncertain economic and political outlook may mean that a plan to invest in shares today seems unappealing to some people. After all, last year was an incredibly challenging period that could yet continue in the coming months.However, on a long-term view, buying shares today could be a sound move. Through investing money in a diverse range of high-quality businesses while they trade at low prices, an investor may be able to achieve financial freedom.5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…Buying high-quality shares todayInvesting in shares today clearly carries short-term risks. As such, it could be a good idea to buy companies that have solid financial positions and wide economic moats. Their strong balance sheets that contain little or no debt may mean they are under less pressure should the economic outlook deteriorate. This may increase their chances of surviving what could be a challenging period in 2021 to benefit from a likely long-term stock market recovery.Similarly, companies with wide economic moats may be able to improve their market positions after present economic challenges. Their unique products, low cost bases or brand loyalty may mean they produce stronger growth rates in the coming years. This may contribute to higher share prices via more generous valuations that make a positive impact on an investor’s chances of achieving financial freedom.Investing in shares today at low pricesInvesting in shares today could be a profitable long-term move because of the low valuations that are present in many sectors. Investors seem to be cautious about the outlooks for a number of industries that could produce disappointing returns in the coming months. However, as the economy recovers and consumer confidence improves, those same sectors could benefit the most from an improving operating environment.Therefore, unpopular shares that trade at cheap prices could provide scope for strong capital gains in the long run. Buying any asset at a discount to its intrinsic value has historically provided greater scope for capital growth as its outlook improves. Of course, it is important to only invest money in high-quality businesses, rather than simply buying cheap stocks. Otherwise, an investor may end up with a portfolio full of low-quality businesses that lack recovery potential.Considering risk when aiming for financial freedomManaging risk is likely to be an important consideration for any investor who is seeking to achieve financial freedom. After all, the world economy faces an uncertain future in 2021.Therefore, diversifying across a wide range of companies and sectors could be a sound move. It may allow an investor to become less reliant on one or a small number of companies for their returns. This may reduce their risk of loss, improve their return prospects and increase their chances of becoming financially free in the coming years. I’m sure you’ll agree that’s quite the statement from Motley Fool Co-Founder Tom Gardner.But since our US analyst team first recommended shares in this unique tech stock back in 2016, the value has soared.What’s more, we firmly believe there’s still plenty of upside in its future. In fact, even throughout the current coronavirus crisis, its performance has been beating Wall St expectations.And right now, we’re giving you a chance to discover exactly what has got our analysts all fired up about this niche industry phenomenon, in our FREE special report, A Top US Share From The Motley Fool. I would like to receive emails from you about product information and offers from The Fool and its business partners. Each of these emails will provide a link to unsubscribe from future emails. More information about how The Fool collects, stores, and handles personal data is available in its Privacy Statement. Simply click below to discover how you can take advantage of this. See all posts by Peter Stephens
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Roland Head | Wednesday, 16th June, 2021 | More on: HE1 It was released in November 2020, and make no mistake:It’s happening.The UK Government’s 10-point plan for a new “Green Industrial Revolution.”PriceWaterhouse Coopers believes this trend will cost £400billion……That’s just here in Britain over the next 10 years.Worldwide, the Green Industrial Revolution could be worth TRILLIONS.It’s why I’m urging all investors to read this special presentation carefully, and learn how you can uncover the 5 companies that we believe are poised to profit from this gargantuan trend ahead! I would like to receive emails from you about product information and offers from The Fool and its business partners. Each of these emails will provide a link to unsubscribe from future emails. More information about how The Fool collects, stores, and handles personal data is available in its Privacy Statement. Simply click below to discover how you can take advantage of this. Image source: Getty Images Access this special “Green Industrial Revolution” presentation now Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Shares The Helium One Global (LSE: HE1) share price has risen by almost 400% since the helium explorer floated on the London market in December. Drilling is now underway at the company’s flagship Rukwa project in Tanzania.Helium gas is essential in medical equipment and electronics manufacturing, and global supplies are limited. I reckon good drilling results could trigger share price gains for Helium One. With the HE1 share price now taking a breather, should I buy the stock ahead of the next big move?5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…A “must drill” opportunityAt 4pm local time on Saturday 12 June, Helium One started drilling the first exploration well at its 100%-owned Rukwa Project in Tanzania. External consultants SRK Consulting have reported a best estimate unrisked prospective helium resource of 138 billion cubic feet at Rukwa. This is — potentially — a world-class resource.The first well is being drilled at Tai, which management describe as “a ‘must drill’ three-way dip closure, upgraded by the Company’s recent 2D infill seismic”.Three wells are planned for this drilling programme, each of which will test a different type of trap. In other words, they will each target different underground rock formations to see which — if any — have helium deposits trapped within them.HE1 expects each well to take about month to complete. So we could see results from the company from the middle of July. I think that a positive early result could push the Helium One share price higher.How risky is this?New drilling campaigns are a hugely exciting time for an explorer. It has taken five years of surveying and analysis for Helium One to get to this stage.Surface seeps containing more than 10% helium have given the company confidence that there’s helium in the ground. However, there’s no guarantee that this will convert into a commercial find.The reality is that only a small minority of exploration companies make it big. This is why the pay-offs for winners are so huge — most explorers don’t strike it lucky.It’s incredibly hard to value a stock like this without any information about its commercial potential. But it’s worth remembering that even if HE1 is successful, the company will probably need a lot more money to develop Rukwa. April’s £10m fundraise isn’t likely to last long, in my view.Helium One share price: high enough already?Helium One shares have four-bagged since December. This has given the group a market cap of £129m, even though it has no revenue, limited funding, and no proven resources.I think this is an interesting situation with real potential. But I think that the Helium One share price may already be pricing in a successful drilling campaign.Markets tend to look forward and value shares on what’s known. Right now, the information we have about HE1 and Rukwa is pretty positive. But if early drilling results are mixed and investors turn cautious, the stock could fall quite sharply.Without specialist knowledge about HE1’s assets and about the helium market, I don’t feel confident buying this stock after such a strong run. I think the share price is probably high enough today. I’ll be staying on the sidelines for now. Enter Your Email Address Our 5 Top Shares for the New “Green Industrial Revolution” Should I buy Helium One shares as drilling starts? Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee. See all posts by Roland Head
At Llanelli, Phil Davies always used to say, ‘I expect you to make mistakes because if you’re not making mistakes, you’re not trying things’.I’d like Warren to give players a bit more room to express themselves.There were positives from the autumn. Our front five did fantastically well and Adam Jones has been at the cornerstone of that while second-rows Bradley Davies and Alun Wyn Jones were excellent. Sam Warburton only played two games but has proved that he has the physicality required, as has Dan Lydiate. Those two have shown we have depth in the back row.George North is a real find too. He’s got good stature and is so hungry for the ball; he’s always looking for opportunities. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS Former Wales and Lions scrum-half Robert Jones says it’s all about wins, not good performances in defeat, for Wales.“The main feeling I’m left with after the autumn is one of disappointment as Wales failed to turn some reasonable performances into results. Wales have gone seven games without a win now. A good performance in defeat is no good at the World Cup – it’s all about winning.My main concern – and I’ve said this for the past 12 months – is our creativity in midfield and the back three. We now have as good a front five as we’ve ever had and we have a platform to demolish sides in the scrum, so it’s worrying that we can’t create a lot more from the set-piece.Shane Williams can always do something out of nothing and has individual flair, but we don’t create enough as a team. Players aren’t offering angles or running lines or giving decoy options, and at times we look pedestrian. We’re quite one-dimensional in attack and we need to have options A, B and C so that players can change things as they see it.The one thing I’d question Warren Gatland over is our ability to change and to give players more freedom. The attacking play sometimes looks premeditated and while there needs to be structure, there also has to be balance and variety.We don’t look up and play with our heads or our eyes; we don’t play what’s in front of us and see the space. Dan Carter constantly scans and looks at what’s in front of him. He may go through 12 phases of using forwards to hit it up but when the opportunity arises he’ll go up a gear and exploit the space he’s seen. That’s what New Zealand are so good at – they’re patient and then have the ability to be ruthless when the opportunities come.We need to be more inventive in our attacking approach – the lines we run and the options we offer – and it’s not a case of changing personnel but changing the mindset. We’ve got a few players to come back from injury, so we should be in a better position to compete in the Six Nations. And we need to have a good Six Nations as this a tough season, with the World Cup a big carrot at the end of it.”Click here to see George North score two tries for Wales on his debut
22 total views, 2 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis ICFM seeks input for Convention 2001 AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis ICFM’s National Fundraisers’ Convention is looking for speakers.ICFM’s National Fundraisers’ Convention next year will take place between 16 and 18 July. ICFM is currently seeking presentation ideas and speaker suggestions for next year’s event. Members are currently receiving a form for this consultation.Contact Rachel Warn, Director, National Fundraisers’ Convention, at ICFM. For a list of other upcoming events for fundraisers visit UK Fundraising’s events directory. Advertisement Howard Lake | 14 August 2000 | News About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving.
Tagged with: Charity Commission Digital Law / policy AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis 25 total views, 1 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis Charity Commission consults on impact of moving all services online The Charity Commission is planning to move all of its services online by 2012, but the charity regulator wants to be aware of any problems this might cause the many people and organisations that use its services. It has therefore conducted an Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA), and is now consulting more widely on this.The Commission has been developing its online services for some years and the number of charities taking advantage of these is growing. Last year there was a 24% increase in the use of its online services from the previous year, with over 75% of annual return or update submissions by charities made online. Last year the Commission’s website had nearly 40 million page views.Financial pressures have played some part in the move online: the Commission’s budget has been cut in recent years, and its funding for 2010/11 is 16% less than it was five years ago. But the transition to online-only brings other benefits to people and organisations interacting with the Commission. For example, charity registration applications filled in online take less than half the time to complete and approve than those sent in by post.Andrew Hind, Chief Executive of the Charity Commission said: “A move to online services will have numerous benefits for charities and their advisers, the Commission, and the environment, but we want to make sure charities have their say about the potential impact of this.“We’re already asking charity advisers to communicate with us electronically, and extending this to all our customers will save us and charities valuable time and money. Of course we will always honour our responsibilities towards customers with disabilities and other very specific needs. However if we can adopt more online working, it will help us cope with what is likely to be a much more constrained budget.”The Commission will accept responses until 29 October 2010.www.charitycommission.gov.uk Howard Lake | 17 August 2010 | News About Howard Lake Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world’s first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of GoodJobs.org.uk. Researching massive growth in giving.
More than 80 events were held across the U.S. around the theme of “Not 1 More Deportation!” on April 5, the date immigrant rights activists estimated that the 2 millionth person would be deported under the administration of President Barack Obama. The actions were coordinated by the National Day Labor Organizing Network, which says that the 2 million deportations are “2 million too many.”The following is a sampling of the actions that took place.Tacoma, Wash.Many people and organizations are rallying to the side of a prisoners’ hunger strike that began on March 7 at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Wash. Despite retaliation, the immigrant strikers continue to press their demands against brutal racist treatment and an end to the plague of deportations.The strike has also spread to prisoners in at least one other prison, in Conroe, Texas. The GEO Group Inc., which calls itself “the world’s leading provider of correctional and detention services,” owns both the Tacoma and Conroe prisons.More than 100 demonstrators gathered in front of the Wells Fargo bank building downtown on April 5, then marched through downtown and down to the detention center. Wells Fargo owns a huge amount of GEO stock.At the detention center, the protesters joined with hundreds of others holding banners and with many families with children. They marched in front of the detention center, chanting “¡No están solos!” (“You are not alone!”) loud enough for the prisoners to hear. The march and rally were organized by El Comité Pro Reforma Migratoria Y Justicia Social and Latino Advocacy, both of which have been in regular contact with the prisoners.It was announced that 20 prisoners who had been placed in solitary confinement in retaliation for the strike had been released to the general population. This victory happened with the help of an American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit charging violation of the prisoners’ First Amendment rights.But five other prisoners remain in solitary. They include army veteran Hassall Moses, who was penalized for typing an appeal for a work stoppage along with the hunger strike. The prisoners demand an end to slave wages of $1 a day.Spouses and loved ones of the prisoners spoke out against long-term imprisonment on petty charges, which keeps their families separated. José Moreno, an organizer of the hunger strike who just got out on bond, demanded that the prison be shut down.Two weeks ago, Washington Rep. Adam Smith led a delegation into the prison to talk to the prisoners. Later, Smith criticized the prison conditions and the country’s deportation policy, but GEO and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have changed nothing so far.The Washington State Labor Council held a week-long women’s fast, starting March 31, to demand an end to deportations and for comprehensive immigration reform. They also held an all-day vigil at the detention center and collected funds for the prisoners’ families.On March 23, AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre, along with Washington State Labor Council President Jeff Johnson, representing 400,000 workers, visited with prisoners’ supporters as well as their family members outside the prison. After being informed of the oppressive prison conditions, the two labor representatives spoke out against them and against the policy resulting in the deportation of 2 million workers in recent years.The strike continues because of the prisoners’ iron determination. The hunger strikers have posted an eight-page handwritten letter in which they “demand that the Federal Executive (Mr. President Barack Obama) use his presidential authority and order a total stop to the unjust deportations that are separating families, destroying homes, and bringing uncertainty, insecurity and unhappy futures to our children, our loved ones.” The detention center prisoners also have demands against the brutal conditions at the facility.Solidarity could become a rising tide as more support actions are planned.HoustonHoustonIn Houston, a militant protest took place outside the Harris County jail in downtown Houston, where the sheriff has detained and turned over thousands to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Houston Sheriff Adrian Garcia was a focus there because he enthusiastically uses ICE’s “287(g)” and “Secure Communities” programs to detain immigrants and criminalize people for working and supporting their families.Speaker after speaker faced the jail and condemned Houston cops and sheriffs for taking people from their families and communities. Many are arrested for “crimes” such as not having a driver’s license, which the undocumented cannot get in Texas. Then they are turned over to Immigration and deported. One focus of the demonstration was the ongoing hunger strike at the Joe Corley Detention Facility, located 40 miles north of Houston in Conroe.Adelina Cáceres spoke at length about the conditions her spouse is protesting and why he became one of the leaders of the hunger strike. The strike began on March 17, after the detainees were inspired by the hunger strike they saw on television being carried out in Tacoma. Their demands include stopping the deportations and the resulting separation of families, reducing the number of detainees in one cell, fixing deplorable health violations and the lack of health care, and an end to local and state police cooperation with ICE.The spouse of Manuel Martínez Arámbula, Ernestina Martínez, and one of his daughters spoke at the April 5 rally. On April 3, Manuel Martínez Arámbula, one of the strike leaders, turned 50 years old. On his birthday his spouse and daughters, along with many supporters, held a birthday party with cake and refreshments outside of the detention center where he was being held.In the middle of the night after the party, Martínez was deported. He has lived here in the U.S. since he was eight.The family had spoken with Martínez, who said he is determined to come home. They emphasized on April 5 that they were determined to fight his unjust deportation. His daughter said, “I miss my father. I want him to come home so we can be a family again. This makes me very sad, but we will fight until he can come home where he belongs. His family is here.”Chanting “Education, not deportation!” and “¡Obama, eschucha! ¡Estamos en la lucha!” (Obama, listen! We are in struggle!”) the crowd marched a block to the 287(g) office and took over the reception area. Security was alarmed as the room filled with sign-carrying protesters chanting “No justice, no peace!” and “Stop deportations!” Those who could not squeeze inside demonstrated outside.The protest was held by the Southwest Defense Network, La TUYA (Texas Undocumented Youth Alliance), Alianza Mexicana, Third Ward Defense Network, the Houston chapter of Industrial Workers of the World and Houston Anarchist Black Cross.While GEO continues to profit from the exploitation of immigrants inside Joe Corley Detention, and ICE continues to use extreme retaliation tactics, hunger strikers and the community vowed to continue exposing deportations and inhumane conditions until their demands are met.Also on April 5, another Houston event to demand “Not 1 More Deportation” was held by the Living Hope Wheelchair Association and the Fe y Justicia Worker Center.AtlantaAtlantaThousands of immigrants and their allies from labor, community and faith organizations walked from the Georgia state Capitol to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement building in Atlanta, demanding an end to mass deportations. The Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights initiated the action, once again showing the power of its grassroots organizing.Buses, vans and cars brought participants from north, middle and south Georgia, many adults accompanied by their small children. Colorful banners and signs all called on President Obama to act now and prevent the deportation of even one more immigrant. Bright yellow balloons were inscribed with “Stop deportations” and “Not one more.”Once at the ICE office, the demonstrators surrounded the fence-enclosed building. After listening to the stories of families broken apart by the unjust immigration policies, hundreds of signs bearing the names of those Georgia men and women deported or being held in detention were affixed to the iron bars and the balloons released.Dianne Mathiowetz, Jim McMahan and Gloria Rubac contributed to this report.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
Rev. Edward Pinkney in Benton Harbor, MI, May 26, 2012.On July 26, the Michigan Court of Appeals rejected the appeal of political prisoner Rev. Edward Pinkney. Convicted in Berrien County, Mich., this community activist has already served over 19 months for supposedly altering dates on a recall petition against then-Benton Harbor mayor James Hightower.His sentence of 2.5 to 10 years in prison has him currently locked up in the remote Marquette Branch Prison, almost 500 miles from his family and friends.The Court of Appeals heard oral arguments from Rev. Pinkney’s attorney on May 11. Amicus briefs were also filed by the National Lawyers Guild and the American Civil Liberties Union, which was given leave to also argue before the court. Four issues were raised on appeal.The first issue revolved around whether the alteration of dates on the petitions was even a felony under the specific law he was charged with violating. The law specifies acts by government officials who violate election laws. The court, however, ruled that the provision in Pinkney’s case also applies to any individual, not just officials.In an outrageous argument, the court held that “sufficient evidence was presented to support the jury’s guilty verdicts” based entirely on the facts that Rev. Pinkney was “the leader in the recall efforts,” “had previously sponsored several recall campaigns,” “circulated 33 of the 62 recall petitions,” spoke at city commission and other meetings about the recall and “demonstrated animosity towards [Mayor] Hightower in various ways.” The court decided that this alone is enough “to find the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.”Rev. Pinkney is an African-American man from a city that is 90 percent African American, but he was tried in front of an all-white jury by a white prosecutor and a white judge.The court completely brushed aside the effect on the jury of the prosecutor harping again and again on the defendant’s activist history. The court argued that “the jury was properly instructed several times that it could only consider the other-acts evidence for motive purposes” and that “jurors are presumed to follow their instructions.”The Court of Appeals then argued that even if Rev. Pinkney was not the one who altered dates on the petitions, he could be convicted for aiding and abetting another person who might have done so because Pinkney was “leader of the recall campaign.”Court condemns Rev. Pinkney for activismFinally, the court upheld the introduction of Rev. Pinkney’s long career as a community activist as “motive” to commit election violations. These included “his radio show,” “his recall efforts in the local community,” “his speaking engagements across the country” and “his search for justice and equality in general.” According to the three judges, this “showed that defendant had a motive to alter the dates on the recall petitions, thus providing evidence of the identification of the perpetrator.”This last conclusion can condemn every political activist in the country to be guilty of any political crime just for being an activist. This threat to free speech is one reason for the intervention of the NLG and the ACLU in this case.On July 27, Rev. Pinkney wrote to his supporters: “We are living in a time when the court system and the prosecutor don’t need evidence to send a man to prison. I know they don’t have any evidence, because I didn’t do it. And the prosecutor knows I didn’t do it.“You have got to be very, very careful today,” he continued, “because if you take a stand against the system they’ll do everything in their power to crush you. Now they can send you to prison and keep you there without evidence. Better keep your eyes and your mind on freedom, and keep freedom on your mind.“What do you do now? Now that you can be sent to prison with no evidence? What’s the next step for you? Now that there is a 100 percent chance of you being convicted if you are charged, what can you do? What should you do? This is the question I hope we are all asking ourselves.”It is expected that the case will be appealed to the Michigan Supreme Court in the next few months. Donations toward Rev. Pinkney’s defense can be made at bhbanco.org. Write to Rev. Edward Pinkney #294671, Marquette Branch Prison, 1960 U.S. Highway 41 South, Marquette, MI 49855. FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this