Now that December has finally reared its chilly head, join the Jingle Bell Run in Richmond, Virginia, this Saturday to ring in the holiday season – literally. On December 6, runners will flaunt their winter spirit through 5 kilometers of jingle-jangle fun.Richmond’s annual Jingle Bell Run has been voted “one of the Most Incredible Themed Races nationwide,” and just one look at the crowd will show you why. Forget about those nice running tights and fancy sweat-wicking shirt: Santa hats and elf costumes take the stage instead. The dress-code calls for your best holiday costume, so leave your athletic gear at home and suit up! Plus, celebrate with every step by tying jingle bells to your shoelaces and give those 3.15 miles a special soundtrack.In addition to spreading some good holiday cheer, the Jingle Bell Run has yet another good deed up its sleeve. Proceeds from the event go toward Arthritis aid, in the form of research funding, scholarships, trainers, medical fees, and public education. With a huge goal of $45,000 nationwide, every dollar makes a difference. Plus, if you raise $100 on top of your registration, you’ll walk away with both a Sport Tec wicking shirt and a coveted “Fundana”. We’re sure that the Jingle Bell Run itself is incentive enough for BRO’s , but hop on board with these extras and give the Arthritis Foundation even more of a boost! Santa’s watching…The race begins at 7 a.m. on Saturday, December 6, at Stony Point Fashion Park just outside the city. Register online anytime before race day, or on-site the morning of, for just $30. Bring the kids and your pets, too – the event is stroller- and leash-friendly, and children can run themselves for half-price. Release some cabin fever, get a head start on your New Year’s goals, or just come have fun at the Jingle Bell Run!
Florida Man takes an alligator into a liquor store. Florida Man shoots gun at hurricane. Florida Man kidnaps scientist to make his dog immortal. Florida Man tries to force KFC employee to reopen restaurant at gunpoint…If you’re not familiar with the real-life tragi-comedy that is “Florida Man,” you need to spend some time on Google and Twitter. To sum it up: any headline that begins with “Florida Man” is guaranteed to be weird AF. And the “Florida Man” phenomenon belies that fact that the Sunshine State is often the butt of the joke.I’ve certainly issued my fair share of disparaging comments about Florida over the years, but I’m here to say that I’ve had it all wrong about Florida. This place is downright magical. I’ve spent the last few days camping on a finger of sand and bugs sticking out into the Gulf of Mexico with my family and I’ve been blown away with how wild and pristine the area is. Most of my past experience with Florida has been centered around cultural standouts like Panama City and Jacksonville and I honestly had no idea there was anything to this state other than wet t-shirt contests and sub-par professional football, but let me tell you, Florida is awesome.We spent three nights camping on Cape San Blas, which has nine miles of undeveloped beach, and spent our days paddling the warm Gulf waters and hiking around massive dunes. And we pretty much had the whole cape to ourselves. Sure, the bugs were horrendous and the alligator warnings were ubiquitous, but I like not being the apex predator in the general vicinity. It gives the whole endeavor a Jurassic Park sort of vibe and really provides perspective on your life.After conquering the coast, we headed inland to explore the state’s natural springs. Yeah, thousands of gallons of cold, fresh water bubbles up from limestone caves creating serene pools and rivers. This is real Ponce de Leon kind of stuff, and they’re everywhere throughout the middle of the state. These pools are refreshing as hell (in case you didn’t know, Florida is f-ing hot) with incredible snorkeling, and again, thanks to the lush foliage and alligator warnings, the springs have a legit jungle vibe. Also, they tend to sprout rare inner-tube trees.I know I’ve barely dipped my toe in the primal adventure that Florida offers (I’m lobbying to change the nickname to “The Jurassic State,”) but my interest is piqued. I really hope the melting ice caps don’t drown this Peninsula because I want to see more.
Credit unions are facing several new market realities compelling them to rethink everything from products and services to entire business models. Three shifts, in particular, are commanding attention:Digital Emboldens ConsumersCredit union membership is at all-time highs. The cooperative model and its purpose-driven approach to financial services clearly are resonating with people who want to be known and appreciated by the businesses they choose. Within this contingent, however, are strong expectations for real-time, predictive and hyper-personalized experiences. When they aren’t met, today’s consumer takes swift, decisive action. One in three Americans will consider switching companies after just a single instance of poor service.Making matters even more tenuous, the rise of digital products, platforms and services has emboldened unhappy consumers. Social media allows them to vent frustrations to thousands. Hundreds of options for financial services create a greater enticement to try something new, and sophisticated switch kits make leaving a financial institution easy.Technology Shrinks Barriers to EntryThanks to the emergence of open banking and the explosion of APIs, you don’t need to be a bank to have access to banking consumers. Regulations like the second Payment Services Directive (PSD2), which essentially commands financial institutions to open their data stores to anyone the consumer tells them to, are further thinning the ice of the traditional financial institution-customer relationship.All of this makes it easier to build, launch and scale a business quickly and without a lot of resources. In addition, the proliferation of a fail-forward mindset has changed much of the culture of creation. Because the new methodology dictates a “launch before it’s perfect” strategy, the speed with which consumers are encountering new banking and financial options is incredible. Digital Transformation is Real and Bearing FruitOnce considered a buzz phrase, digital transformation is now believed to be an incumbent firm’s key to survival. Legacy behemoths with years of profitability have invested millions in think tanks and innovation labs; some are even investing in the success of their disruptors. Consumers are beginning to see the results of that investment. User-centric strategies mean more big brands are building – and really using – feedback loops. Digital channels are improving exponentially, as legacy firms figure out how to integrate them seamlessly into the consumer experience. As comfort and delight with these channels and engagements increases, consumers will expect all the brands in their lives to keep pace. In the financial world, consumers already interact regularly with video tellers, virtual assistants, chatbots and other digital banking innovations that make day-to-day financial tasks not only easier, but enjoyable. Credit Unions are Uniquely Positioned to EvolveResponding to each of these market realities will require change. Although change inside most legacy verticals is slow, credit unions are unencumbered by many of the innovation chains that hold back transformation. I can think of at least three ways credit unions are uniquely up to the challenge:Credit union people have an innate desire to serve their members exceptionally well, even when it isn’t easy. Credit union executives and their teams are eager to experiment to learn. Credit union leaders have a passion for knowledge and continuous improvement. The goal is to become great at organizational ambexterity (just a fancy way of saying keep doing what you do best while exploring ways of delivering more value). Here are a few questions to get started:What do we do better than anyone else? How does that competency add value to our members’ lives?How can technology help us deliver that value in an even richer way? What will our members need tomorrow? How can we leverage today’s competency to meet those future needs?By staying true to their roots while also exploring the many transformative technologies and partnerships available to them, credit unions will rise to the challenge of these and other shifting market dynamics. The above is an edited excerpt from the white paper “How Humans and Machines Will Transform the Credit Union Industry,” by Shazia Manus, Chief Strategy & Business Development Officer for AdvantEdge Analytics. To download and read the paper in its entirety, visit cunamutual.com/aea-ai. 15SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Shazia Manus At AdvantEdge Analtyics, Shazia Manus applies a futurist view to the field of analytics, helping credit unions discover new possibilities for exceptional member experiences. Prior to joining CUNA Mutual Group … Web: advantedgeanalytics.com Details
Years ago, long before I began working in professional development for credit union leaders, I was a middle school language arts teacher. The school district in which I taught was struggling with the “summertime slip,” that inevitable backward step that many students make when they are out school for the two or three months of summer break.My district’s solution was to shift to a year-round schedule in which the long summer break is replaced by a series of three shorter breaks throughout the year. The results were less than stellar. Instead of helping students remain motivated to learn through their breaks, we assumed that three shorter sessions of academic inactivity would lead to better results. It didn’t. We traded a single case of “summer slip” for three periods of academic atrophy.The three shorter breaks model didn’t account for the challenges of self-directed and distance learning that are very much a part of any break from school. Learning is inherently social. That’s why we like to share ideas with others in the classroom, discuss our favorite books and teach others how to pursue the hobbies we love. When we divorce learners from each other and teachers, motivation goes down the drain. We even see the effect with adult learners in online programs led by some of the top educational institutions in the world, like Harvard and MIT. The EdX courses of those top universities—which are one-way, non-interactive offerings—had only a 3.13% completion rate by all participants in 2017-2018.A parallel challenge to learning is now taking place in the credit union industry.“Social distancing”—or not being in close physical proximity to anyone other than those you live with—is currently being practiced in many areas to help delay the spread of coronavirus. This means that many organizations are wisely postponing traditional in-person learning events until it’s safer to travel and be in a classroom. But now, perhaps more than any time since the Great Recession, targeted professional development is essential to respond to the rapidly shifting business environment. That means your staff and board will be required to continue their professional development on their own.Fortunately, there are things we can do to stay engaged as we learn virtually during shelter-in-place.Switch things up. When we are learning on our own, we can take a lesson from the way teachers structure their school days. On any given day, students experience a range of activities—reading and writing workshops, science and math labs, model building, and small and large group discussion. The variety hamstrings boredom and keeps the students engaged and learning. Apply these principles in your own self-directed learning. Combine short articles and longer pieces of literature, videos and podcasts, case studies, and structured online learning on the topics you need to know.Share and ask questions of others. Often, the biggest detriment to self-directed and online learning is the lack of interaction with other learners and instructors. This is exacerbated by current social distancing requirements. Humans learn best when we share ideas, ask questions and brainstorm together, but it requires some creative problem-solving when our teams and learning partners are all working from home. Not surprisingly, my team at CUES uses Zoom calls for more structured discussions and problem-solving, but we are relying more on Microsoft Teams to ask quick questions and share ideas and resources. It’s common to receive a chat message during the day that says something like, “Hey, I just read this article about having an entrepreneurial mindset. How can we apply the principles to our team?” Find what works for you, whether it’s Microsoft Teams, an online forum, email or text. Maybe you just want to pick up the phone. Just share your learning.Seek opportunities to interact with subject matter experts. A key benefit of learning in the classroom is the opportunity to ask questions and interact with the teacher. When we engage in self-study, we can’t always answer our challenging questions by performing another Google search or reading another book, but to our detriment, we are often reluctant to pick up the phone, send an email or ask a co-worker for help. It’s time to change that mindset. Actively seek out experts—co-workers, friends, or LinkedIn and social media contacts—who can answer questions and add more color to your learning. Don’t be afraid to contact someone outside of your immediate circle or at a vendor. People enjoy sharing and are often honored to be recognized for their expertise. Ask a question. It will enhance your learning.Apply what you’ve learned. Knowledge for knowledge’s sake won’t position your organization for success. Use your new-found knowledge to improve your processes, enhance your communication, implement a new business model or develop better plans. Applying new information on even a small scale helps us retain what we’ve learned and transfer that knowledge to new contexts, meaning we are better able to apply it to solve other problems.All of us hope that social distancing is effective and that the pandemic is over as soon as possible. I encourage you to keep learning through self-directed and digital offerings during the crisis, so you’ll be primed and ready to return to the full blend of options later on. As one example of what’s available, our School of Business Lending has been transformed for virtual delivery at the beginning of June. I certainly do look forward to seeing you at a future in-person learning event. 5SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Christopher Stevenson Christopher Stevenson, CAE, CIE, is SVP/Chief Learning Officer for CUES, where he leads the development and delivery of educational offerings and products and services to help meet the professional … Web: https://www.cues.org Details
When Namibian activist Venicia Shanjenka first saw the tweet naming and shaming a rapist in the tiny southern African country of 2.5 million, she thought it was a brave but isolated act.But one tweet turned into hundreds, and #MeTooNamibia erupted into a growing movement backed by the first lady, Monica Geingos, that is using social media to track down sexual predators, and offer survivors psychosocial and legal support.”For a small country, we were alarmed at the number of women sharing stories online,” said Shanjenka, a 24-year-old make-up artist and one of the founding members of Slut Shame Walk, a women’s empowerment organization and member of #MeTooNamibia. Namibia’s unemployment rate stands at 33%, according to the country’s statistics agency.Geingos said with this prevalence of violence against women, it did not take long to start and build a movement.One day after the first tweet she brought together a consortium of activists and academics fighting violence against women under the #MeTooNamibia banner.Fears of reprisals “It definitely opened up conversations that were previously not easy to have … It was cathartic (for survivors),” said Geingos in an interview in a meeting room in the State House in the capital of Windhoek.The #MeToo movement began in the United States in late 2017 in response to accusations of sexual assault and harassment by movie producer Harvey Weinstein and quickly spread, emboldening women from Britain and France to India and Iran to speak out.According to the United Nations, it is estimated that 35% of women globally experience physical or sexual violence during their life, although some national studies say this number is as high as 70%.But the #MeToo movement has been slower to take off in Africa, where campaigners say many women fear reprisals for speaking out.”It is a bit of a minefield,” said Geingos, 43, a lawyer and former head of Namibia’s largest private equity fund, adding when women began naming sexual predators they started receiving threats of defamation lawsuits.Despite this, the movement has grown in scope and size, with 30 different organizations now involved.”They were fearless, in my view,” said Geingos.Namibia ranked 12 out of 153 countries in the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap.But activists said this was not an accurate measurement of gender-equality in Namibia, where topics like political empowerment are “tokenistic”, said Ndapwa Alweendo, one of the founders of a feminist podcast “Heard Not Seen”.”The government has a zebra policy in parliament: one man, one woman. But this isn’t enough as it is still a very traditional, conservative leadership,” said Alweendo with co-founder Paleni Amulungu from a coffee shop in Windhoek.”Heard Not Seen” uses humor and dialogue to disrupt taboo topics in Namibia, said the founders, with the podcast downloaded 5,000 times since starting in July 2018.Pan-African networkThe 30 civil society organizations working together under the #MeTooNamibia banner provide legal and psychosocial support for survivors of sexual assault, funded largely from the first lady’s own pocket.”We worked with police to set up a center [in Windhoek] where women can make cases. We got suicide risk cases into therapeutic care. Those being threatened with defamation were linked up with lawyers,” said Geingos.Despite efforts, there have been no convictions so far.”Women are still working through their fear of bringing their cases all the way to court,” said Shanjenka.”Sometimes they are intimidated, or sometimes their cases are more than two years old and there are limited investigative resources,” she said from her home, nursing her eight-month-old daughter.”Our success is the online traffic [on Instagram and Twitter]. It has become a safe space to go if you need to share your story and be heard.”Shanjenka said African countries were taking lessons from one another, with activists sharing pictures and tactics of sexual predators.”It has become a Pan-African support network,” she said.In 2014, Kenyan women protested with the slogan #MyDressismyChoice after a woman was beaten for wearing a miniskirt.Last year thousands of South African women took to the streets to protest using the slogan #AmINext? after a university student was raped and killed at a post office in Cape Town.In Senegal in late 2017, two women started a movement under the name #Nopiwouma, which means “I will not shut up” in the local Wolof language.But Geingos said the movement had a long way to go.”The one thing we don’t want to accept is to live in a world where women who’ve been raped are expected to keep quiet, and are portrayed as liars,” she said.”Every single man who’s not held accountable becomes a high risk to reoffend.” Topics : “We are currently using the testimonies from social media to build a sex offenders list for prosecutions,” she told the Thomson Reuters Foundation, adding the private database would be taken to the Supreme Court and put online in the coming year.#MeTooNamibia, with partners such as Slut Shame Walk, are also campaigning for more female police officers, organizing panel discussions at schools and universities, and planning annual marches against the excuses men use to rape.Chief Inspector Hendrik Marthinus Olivier of the Gender Based Violence Protection Unit in Windhoek said they receive 300 to 400 domestic violence cases per month.”It is difficult to say why these numbers are so high for such a small country, but I think unemployment, drugs and alcohol play a big role,” he said in a phone interview, adding that they are working with social workers to tackle the issue.
The consortium is developing flocked swabs — a kit for collecting swab samples — made with nearly a 100 percent local content.Read also: UI develops online map showing spread of COVID-19 in IndonesiaThe Hope and Solution for COVID-19 (HS 19) flocked swabs are now being produced after passing research and testing phases conducted by researchers and doctors from UI’s School of Engineering and School of Medicine.The availability of flocked swabs is still rare in Indonesia and could only be imported. “Collaboration between universities and the industry is necessary to address COVID-19 challenges,” UI rector Ari Kuncoro said in a statement on Friday.Ari said the collaboration between the parties had led to the first batch of 50,000 HS 19 flocked swabs. The kits were distributed on Thursday to various hospitals through the network of UI’s School of Medicine alumni.“We aim to produce 1 million [HS 19] flocked swabs by this June to be donated to the government and later distributed to [COVID-19] referral hospitals and laboratories across Indonesia,” Ari said.Read also: COVID-19: Government to conduct PCR ‘pool tests’ in 8 provincesHendri DS Budiono, the dean of UI’s School of Engineering, added that the university was developing collaborations for research and innovation within the campus, particularly in the development of medical equipment.“The cooperation between UI, the industry and the government managed to downstream [the university’s] research, which can contribute to the country, especially amid this pandemic,” he said.Meanwhile, UI School of Medicine dean Ari Fahrial Syam said the cooperation proved that interdisciplinary-based research and development was the best option for the country.Aside from getting assistance from the consortium, the development of HS 19 is also funded by a grant from UI’s directorate of science and technological innovations.Currently, the consortium is still developing the flocked swabs to include 100 percent local content.Topics : As part of its social responsibility and public contribution in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic, the University of Indonesia (UI) and its various industrial partners are set to produce local-made test kits to support testing in the country.The university said it would establish a consortium comprising experts and researchers from its School of Engineering’s Research Center for Biomedical Engineering (RCBE).The school will collaborate with several partners whose businesses are in the pharmaceutical, medical and manufacturing sectors, namely Dynapack Asia Pte. Ltd., PT Chandra Asri Petrochemical Tbk., PT Ingress Malindo Ventures, PT Toyota Manufacturing Indonesia, PT Langgeng Jaya, PT Indachi Prima and PT Sri Tita Medika.
Analysis by the UK government has shown charging in both trust and insurance defined contribution (DC) schemes stands higher than estimates – and on the cusp of, or above, a proposed charge cap.The Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) conducted more than 1,300 interviews with trust and contract schemes, as well as the 11 largest insurance DC providers in the UK.Through its research, and analysis of scheme data, the department found the average annual charge for members was 75 basis points in trust schemes and 84bps in insurance schemes.Previous estimates by the Association of British Insurers (ABI), a lobby group for insurance-based pension providers, said the average charge among its members was 52bps. Average figures also differed significantly when split by the size of the scheme.A small insurance scheme (six to 11 members) was paying as much as 91bps, while a trust scheme (with 12-99 members) was paying 94bps.Average annual charges fall as scheme size increases, the government said.An insurance scheme with more than 1,000 members fell below the 75bps threshold recently touted by the DWP.Charges for the largest trust schemes marginally fell below those of the larger contract-based schemes, with an average charge of 42bps.The government had been consulting on implementing a cap on member charges within DC schemes.The cap, which was initially expected to be between 50bps and 100bps, was aimed at schemes used for the rollout of auto-enrolment, with expectations for its application across all schemes.However, the cap was expected to be implemented by April this year, until it was announced by pensions minister Steve Webb that complications had forced the government to delay by at least a year.This sparked a backlash from opposition ministers in the UK Parliament, amid accusations the government had given in to vested interests in the insurance industry.In its research, the department added that the size of the scheme, along with adviser commissions, contributions and when the scheme was set up, impacted the most on charging levels.Trust schemes set up before 1991, on average, had a higher charge by 10bps to those set up after 2001.The difference between schemes in the insurance sector was 20bps.The use of active member discounts (AMDs), which results in non-contributory members facing additional charges, and another aspect the current government aimed to abolish, were also analysed.Government research showed only 3% of trust schemes operated such a policy, with marginally more insurance providers doing so, at 10%.On average, non-contributory members faced an additional 38bps charge in their DC fund compared with active members.
Offshore classification organization ABS has been selected by Seacor Marine to class the first offshore support vessel (OSV) in the Gulf of Mexico to operate using hybrid power.Seacor requested the Battery-Li notation for its Seacor Maya OSV currently operated by Mantenimiento Express Maritimo (Mexmar), Seacor Marine’s joint venture in Mexico.ABS said on Monday that the OSV was being upgraded to use lithium battery power, with modifications expected to be completed in May 2018.ABS’ director for offshore support vessels, Wei Huang, said: “ABS recognizes the economic and environmental benefits of hybrid-powered vessels to reduce fuel consumption and emissions in the marine and offshore industries. This milestone reinforces our safety mission and promotes the development of alternative power applications and energy storage systems that optimize efficiencies.”Seacor’s manager of engineering, Tim Clerc, added: “The hybrid power solution on the Seacor Maya has the potential to significantly reduce fuel consumption—by as much as 20 percent. To help Seacor realize the benefit of using cutting-edge hybrid power, we partnered with ABS, to class the lithium battery system, to help validate its reliability. The operational savings gained from a hybrid power solution will also reduce emissions and facilitate our compliance with strict environmental regulations.”Seacor also engaged ABS to provide the optional Battery-Li notation, on three additional OSVs operated by Mexmar, planned to upgrade to a similar battery system.The conversion to hybrid power for the Seacor Azteca, Seacor Warrior, and Seacor Viking is expected to be completed in July 2018.The lithium-ion-based energy storage systems (ESS) for all four vessels was agreed to be supplied by Corvus Energy while Kongsberg was contracted to deliver technology upgrades for the Azteca, Warrior, and Viking OSVs in late January. Under the contract, Kongsberg will deliver and install a hybrid power and DP upgrade on the vessels.Kongsberg was also contracted for the same work on the Seacor Maya in September 2017.
Breitbart.com 3 November 2015On Monday, the federal government declared itself fit for the madhouse by mandating that a Chicago high school allow a full biological male into the girls’ locker room for all purposes, including nudity. This biological male, the feds determined, was different because he thinks he is a female.The feds have ruled that the presence of a twig-and-berries in the girls’ locker room has been mandated by Title IX of the Civil Rights Act. Yes, ladies and gents and non-cisgenders: it turns out that the battle against sexism enshrined in the ill-written Title IX was actually intended to force underage young women to look at the penises and testicles of mentally ill boys.Progress.The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights spent almost two years checking out the Township High School District 211 because of the transgender “girl.” He filed a complaint with the feds in 2013 after the school refused “unrestricted access” to the girls’ locker room. The district eventually agreed to allow the boy into the girls’ room so long as he used a privacy curtain while disrobing.That wasn’t good enough. The feds determined that this still constituted discrimination. Why? As John Knight, director of the alphabet-soup LGBT and AIDS Project at the ACLU, stated, this was “blatant discrimination.” He explained (well, we think it’s a he, unless he identifies differently today):Keep up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.It’s not voluntary; it’s mandatory for her. It’s one thing to say to all the girls, “You can choose if you want some extra privacy,” but it’s another thing to say, “You, and you alone, must use them.” That sends a pretty strong signal to her that she’s not accepted and the district does not see her as a girl.Perhaps the district does not see “her” as a “girl” because “she” is not a she, a her, or a girl. Nonetheless, the Office for Civil Rights agreed, with Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine Lhamon averring:All students deserve the opportunity to participate equally in school programs and activities – this is a basic civil right. Unfortunately, Township High School District 211 is not following the law because the district continues to deny a female student the right to use the girls’ locker room.The student is not female. But never mind that: the subjective opinion of a mentally ill person now governs a student body of some 12,000.So here, in a nutshell, is the government’s new policy with regard to sex and sexuality among youngsters:If you’re a boy who shows a picture of your penis to a girl in your class, you have likely violated both federal child pornography laws as well as local sexual harassment laws. If this happens consistently in your school, the school has violated Title IX.If you’re a boy who says he’s a girl, the girl must be placed in position to see your penis and testicles. If the school does not allow this, the school has violated Title IX.If you’re an adult who sexually touches a child with the consent of the child, you have committed a crime, since children are incapable of consent.If you’re an adult who gives a child hormone therapy or surgery to prevent normal development of the genitals, with the consent of the child, you are a hero.If this all makes sense to you, you should be working for the federal Office for Civil Rights at the Department of Education.http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/11/03/feds-rule-force-high-school-girls-undress-next-naked-boys-think-theyre-girls/
Share Sharing is caring! Share 60 Views no discussions Tweet News Freedom of movement begins in OECS economic union by: – August 8, 2011 Share Freedom of movement commences within the OECS Economic UnionCASTRIES, St Lucia — Monday, August 1, 2011 heralded the commencement of full freedom of movement of Organisation of Easter Caribbean States (OECS) citizens throughout the six independent countries of the organisation.Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines agreed that, from that date, they would permit OECS citizens to enter their territories and remain for an indefinite period in order to work, establish businesses, provide services or reside.Free movement of OECS citizens is one of the fundamental aspects of the Revised Treaty of Basseterre establishing the OECS Economic Union, which entered into force on January 21, 2011. On that date the OECS Authority of Heads of Government agreed that August 1, 2011 would be the implementation date for the regime for the complete free movement of citizens of participating member states.In order to facilitate the free movement of citizens, the following administrative arrangements and procedures are in effect in member states:OECS citizens traveling within the economic union should enter the special immigration lines designated for CARICOM nationals.OECS citizens traveling within the union must produce the following documents to the immigration officials at the point of entry:1. A valid photo identification card that bears the nationality of the holder, for example, a passport, driver’s license, voter’s registration card or a national ID card.2. A completed E/D form.The immigration official shall grant entry for an indefinite period, save and except in those circumstances where the citizen poses a security risk or there exists some other legal basis for prohibiting entry to the citizen.Persons who require additional information or who are interested in giving feedback are encouraged to contact the regional integration unit of their member state. They may also contact the OECS Secretariat in St Lucia at telephone (758)-455-6327 or by e-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org with a copy to email@example.com. Information is also available on the OECS website www.oecs.orgCaribbean News Now