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Fri, 09 Dec 2016
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British football youth coach arrested after confessing to sex abuse

© Marcin Obara / Global Look Press
Former youth coach and Celtic kitman Jim McCafferty has been arrested in Belfast, Northern Ireland, after confessing to sexually abusing young footballers.

McCafferty, who worked in football in Scotland and Ireland from the 1980s, was arrested after walking into a Belfast police station.

"A 71-year-old male has been arrested by detectives after presenting himself at a station in Belfast," Detective Superintendent Deirdre Bones said, as reported by Sky Sports News.

"He was arrested on suspicion of sexual offenses against children in Northern Ireland. He is currently helping police with their inquiries."

Vader

Sexual Predators: Hundreds of UK police officers accused of sexually abusing victims

© Reuters
Hundreds of British police officers have been accused of engaging in the sexual abuse of victims, according to a report by UK top police watchdog ordered by then-Home Secretary Theresa May earlier this year.

The statement by lead researcher Mike Cunnigham branded the findings the "most serious form of corruption."

According to the study done by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC), during the 24 months to March 31, 2016, there were 436 allegations of abuse of authority for sexual gain "received, or received and finalised," by police forces in England and Wales, including instances of multiple allegations against a single member of police.

Ambulance

Opioid addicts overdosing in staggering numbers in Miami, FL

© C.M. GUERRERO.
Capt. Tony Milan, a battalion commander for City of Miami Fire Rescue, upper left, works on an overdose victim in Overtown last month.
Opioid addicts are overdosing in staggering numbers across Miami-Dade County — and the 'hot zone' for the growing epidemic is the streets of Overtown.

On a sunny morning late last month, a 43-year-old homeless woman named Mary crumpled to the sidewalk along Northwest 17th Street, vomit smeared across her T-shirt and hair. Within minutes, Miami Fire-Rescue paramedics injected her twice with the life-saving antidote known as Narcan.

As they lifted her still-unconscious body into the ambulance, a telltale sign was revealed. On the sidewalk lay a silver burnt spoon used to liquify the powder heroin.

Mary was lucky to survive, and stories like hers have become increasingly common for overwhelmed first responders on the frontline of South Florida's opioid crisis. Newly released statistics show that in the first nine months of 2016, the Miami Fire-Rescue stations in the neighborhood used Narcan nearly 1,000 times - nearly double the rate of last year.

But they don't always make it in time.

Since 2015, at least 31 people have fatally overdosed in Miami's Overtown neighborhood with heroin or fentanyl - often, both - in their blood. That makes it far and away the deadliest zip code for opioid deaths in Miami-Dade County. The city of Miami itself accounted for nearly a whopping 43 percent of all 236 county overdoses recorded since 2015.

Comment: Americans view opioids as biggest local drug epidemic in communities - poll


Health

Danish doctors rise against child circumcision

© Pierre Marsaut / Reuters
A doctor's association in Denmark has made calls to ban child circumcision and the country's government has made it obligatory to report circumcision to authorities, starting next year, in a move to tighten restrictions on the currently unregulated practice.

Circumcision must be "an informed, personal choice," and therefore should be postponed until adulthood, the Danish Medical Association said in a press release. It believes the current state of affairs deprives boys of the ability to make their own decisions about their bodies and their cultural and religious beliefs.

"To be circumcised should be an informed, personal choice. It is most consistent with the individual's right to self-determination that parents not be allowed to make this decision but that it is left up to the individual when he has come of age," The Local quoted Lise Moller, the chairwoman of the doctors' association's ethics board, as saying.

Eye 1

Previously-hidden VA medical center quality ratings are alarming - report

© Larry Downing / Reuters
The sign in the front of the headquarters building at the Department of Veteran Affairs is seen as a man walks past in Washington.
The Department of Veterans Affairs hid quality ratings for nearly 150 of its medical centers, but now USA Today is revealing them for the first time. Despite many facilities receiving just one star, the VA says that the "rating tool" is for internal use only.

According to the VA's rating system, unveiled by USA Today on Wednesday, medical centers receive between one and five stars based on their performance. Texas and Tennessee have most of the lowest-performing medical centers, with VA hospitals in Dallas, El Paso, Nashville, Memphis and Murfreesboro marked with just one star for performance. Many of highest-rated facilities, which scored five out of five stars, are located in the Northeast of the country, clustered in Massachusetts and New York as well as the upper Midwest, in South Dakota and Minnesota.

USA Today managed to obtain the most recent ratings available from June 30, but it says that the VA has refused to provide a list of hospitals that received two, three or four stars.

The agency says its rating system would "hurt" veterans if revealed.

Comment: See also: Veterans in 2016: Backlogs, coverage gaps, and a vague Trump mandate


Ornaments

Aleppo residents: 'Militants held us at gunpoint, withheld food and water'

© RusVesna.su
An RT crew was among the first to speak to residents of Aleppo evacuated after spending months trapped in militant-held parts of the city. The residents had almost no food or water, and were told by militants they would be killed if they tried to escape.

RT has received first-hand accounts describing the atrocities and suffering Aleppo locals faced after the city fell into the hands of terrorists. People were starving, had no water and were forcefully prevented from running away.

"We've been in a very miserable situation. For four months no bread, no water, we've been treated very badly. But thanks to Allah, when the army came, we've moved here," a resident evacuated from the Old City district in Aleppo told RT.

"We tried to escape twice before, but they [militants] threatened us with weapons and made us go back," he said.


Comment: A revealing look at the rebel positions captured by the Syrian Army (note the vast stores of supplies hoarded by the "rebels", and kept from the civilian population):




Biohazard

Trump's top environmental adviser Myron Ebell says pesticides aren't bad for you

© Dave Martin/AP Photo
Like pesticides? Trump's got the right man for you.
To lead the transition of the Environmental Protection Agency, President-elect Donald Trump settled on notorious climate change denier Myron Ebell. The decision rattled climate activists—see Julia Lurie's interview with Bill McKibbenand David Roberts and Brad Plumer on Vox. But it isn't just greenhouse gas emissions that are likely to get a free ride under an Ebell-influenced EPA. Farm chemicals, too, would likely flow unabated if Ebell's agenda comes to dominate Trump's EPA.

Ebell directs the Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. The group runs a website,SafeChemicalPolicy.org, that exists to downplay the health and ecological impacts of chemicals.

Attention

FIFA boss Infantino demands 'zero tolerance' of sex abuse in football

© Roslan Rahman / AFP
FIFA President Gianni Infantino
FIFA President Gianni Infantino says there needs to be "zero tolerance" of child abuse in football, promising to investigate how the sport's governing body can prevent it happening.

English football has been rocked by a scandal over accusations of historical pedophile activity within the game, with police forces across the country dealing with an increasing number of claims.


Comment: Is it just us, or are stories about child abuse and pedophilia showing up everywhere lately?


Microscope 1

3 out of 4 of 'underage' asylum seekers in Denmark are adults, teeth & bone tests show

© Nils Meilvang / Scanpix Denmark / Reuters
The Danish Immigration Service has questioned the age of some 800 asylum seekers who said they are younger than 18. In almost three out of four cases, 'unaccompanied minors' proved to be adults, according to a report.

Experts at the University of Copenhagen's Department of Forensic Medicine have been investigating the age of unaccompanied asylum seekers who arrived in Denmark this year and said they are under 18, Jyllands-Posten daily reported.

The Danish Immigration Service suspected that 800 asylum seekers lied about their real age.

Vader

British Columbia teacher fired for having his own opinion

© Getty Creative
A teacher at a posh private school in British Columbia was fired last month after making an innocuous comment about abortion to his Grade 12 law class.

Though there is no way of knowing, since discipline matters are shrouded in secrecy, it may be the first time a Canadian teacher has been fired not amid allegations of impropriety, but for having the wrong opinion.

Certainly, Lori Foote, a spokesperson for the 60,000-member-strong Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation, said Wednesday that no one at the association is "aware of anyone being fired" in Ontario in comparable circumstances.

Comment: The situation in Canadian schools is nearly unbelievable, it's so bizarre and nonsensical. Along this same line of happenings you might want to read the following articles: