News by Professionals 4 Professionals

US Marshals ID security officer struck by bus

By Shaun Towne and Angie Angers; Reporting by Maura KennedyPublished: May 28, 2014, 3:04 pmUpdated: May 30, 2014, 3:44 pm

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP/WPRI) A federal court security officer remains in critical condition after he was struck by a RIPTA bus in downtown Providence.

U.S. Marshal Jamie Hainsworth said Frank McKnight, 69, was crossing Washington Street near the federal courthouse at about 1:30 p.m. Wednesday when he was hit.

McKnight was taken to Rhode Island Hospital with serious injuries.

At last check was listed in critical condition.

Officials said McKnight has been employed as a court security officer for 13 years, and he was on duty when he was struck.

Prior to being a security officer, Hainsworth said McKnight was a 25-year veteran of the North Kingstown Police Department and retired at the rank of lieutenant.

The crash caused several streets in the area to temporarily shut down and some buses out of Kennedy Plaza had to be diverted.

The incident is being investigated by the Providence Police Department.

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Blogging for Equality: A letter regarding abortion access in PEI

Dr. Colleen MacQuarrie is an Associate Professor in the Psychology Department at the University of Prince Edward Island.

If you would like to sign this letter please contact Dr. MacQuarrie at [email protected]1.

May 21, 2014

Premier Robert W.J.

Ghiz Dear Premier Ghiz and Minister Currie,

In R.v Morgentaler2 (1988) the Supreme Court of Canada recognized that access to abortion is fundamental to women s right to health and to health care. This right is protected by sections 2 (freedom of conscience) and 7 (protection of life, liberty and security) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Dr.

Wedge, the Chief Executive Officer of the Executive Leadership Team for Health PEI, recognizes this: when he was the Executive Director of Medical Affairs for Health PEI he said that the Supreme Court has said that access to legal abortions is a medically necessary service. So you can t legislate against it, because the Supreme Court would just strike it down If someone has the skills to provide a medically necessary service, then what basis would you have to deny it?

Yet despite women s clear and constitutionally protected entitlement to accessible reproductive health care services, the Province of Prince Edward Island has failed over the course of many years to provide access to pregnancy termination in the province. Until recently, the public justification for this failure has been the claim there are no physicians willing and able to provide the service in the province. For example, Health PEI has stated that there is no regulatory or legal impediment to the provision of abortions in PEI hospitals. The implication here is that no abortions are provided in PEI because no physicians are willing to provide them. Further, Richard Wedge has been quoted by CBC News saying If a physician applied for privileges to do abortions on PEI and they had the skills, the training necessary to do it, then they could get privileges for that on PEI. The implication here is that no abortions are provided in PEI because no off-island physicians are willing to provide them. These claims are problematic for several reasons. First, there are at least three physicians willing to provide pregnancy terminations in PEI. The problem is that they cannot simply offer to provide pregnancy terminations and then begin to do so. They need hospital privileges and access to the hospital resources (e.g., space, staff, equipment, supplies, lab services, diagnostic imaging services). Further, it is important to note that efforts to address these barriers appear to be stalled within Health PEI. A proposal has been developed for the establishment of a Termination of Pregnancy Service in PEI and has been approved within the hospital where it would reside and put before the PEI Medical Advisory Committee. However, it has not been moved forward by that Committee. More recently, a second justification has been offered for the failure to provide access to pregnancy termination in the Province: Due to Prince Edward Island s size and population, it is not possible to provide every medical procedure within our province.

This claim is also problematic. As mentioned above, a project proposal has been made to the PEI Medical Advisory Committee for the establishment of a Termination of Pregnancy Service. The business case for this proposal demonstrates that the implementation of the service would be cost-positive for the province. The province currently pays $148,088 per year for off-island services and the proposal would have actual expected costs of $110,825. We therefore ask, on what basis is the project proposal for a Termination of Pregnancy Service not being approved? On what basis is the province of PEI continuing to refuse to provide the women of PEI with access to a medically necessary service that it is their constitutionally protected right to access? The current situation places the lives of the women and girls of Prince Edward Island at serious risk. Yet this can be remedied especially in light of the fact that there are physicians willing to provide abortions and that there is a proposal for a Termination of Pregnancy Service already before the PEI Medical Advisory Committee. The current situation represents an egregious violation of women s constitutionally protected rights to fundamental healthcare, something enjoyed by all Canadians.

It must be remedied. We call on Health PEI to implement immediately a Termination of Pregnancy Service and, thereby, to protect and promote women s health and to respect their Charter protected rights to freedom of conscience, liberty, security of the person and equality

References

  1. ^ [email protected] (www.bloggingforequality.ca)
  2. ^ Morgentaler (scc-csc.lexum.com)

Family of Scots security guard question G4S vetting

Danny Fitzsimons's father Eric and stepmother Liz. Picture: PA

Danny Fitzsimons s father Eric and stepmother Liz. Picture: PA

Updated on the 28 May201409:49

Published 28/05/2014 09:41

A BBC programme claims that security firm G4S was aware of crucial screening failures months before an armed guard murdered two colleagues in Iraq.

Danny Fitzsimons was sentenced to at least 20 years in 2011 for killing Scot Paul McGuigan and Australian Darren Hoare in Baghdad in August 2009.1

All three were working for UK security firm G4S, which was operating under the name ArmorGroup in the region.

BBC Scotland s new current affairs series, Scotland 2014, claims to have seen a leaked copy of the internal investigation report carried out by G4S in the wake of the shootings.

It says that in March 2009 five months before the shootings G4S carried out two separate audits reviewing the screening policies and practices of G4S Risk Management (RM) which dealt with armed contracts against the G4S minimum standards.

The first audit, it is claimed, found the screening procedures for G4S RM only obtained basic disclosure of criminal records and a number of personal files did not include criminal records checks .

The second audit found that contractors who had worked previously for G4S RM and returned after long periods between assignments had an absence of vetting and were found to be deployed before handing in the necessary information .

The report states that the G4S RM policies were not consistent with the G4S minimum standards and that despite ongoing integration plans and significant findings of non-compliance , the action to move to G4S standards was not being vigorously pursued .

It concludes that the feedback from the G4S internal audits does not appear to have been appropriately circulated or followed up .

Vetting

The report also shows the screening and vetting process that Danny Fitzsimons, from Rochdale, Greater Manchester, underwent.

Basic documents such as a completed application form and military references to cover the years he was not working for G4S were missing while details given on his personnel form were incomplete and inappropriate .

The programme also claims that the criminal records bureau certificate, which would have flagged up previous convictions, was never obtained and that he was on bail facing other criminal charges.

At the bottom of the compliancy table, where the file should have been signed off, there are two crosses and it states no check or sign off in place .

The day after the file should have been signed off, Fitzsimons was deployed to Iraq, the programme says.

Mr McGuigan s mother Corinne Boyd-Russell, who lives in Innerleithen in the Borders, is calling for answers from G4S.

She told BBC Scotland: Why would you put guns into the hands of men who hadn t been vetted properly or screened properly?

Why do that?

It s not right, you just shouldn t do that. If they had implemented their processes my son would be alive today. My son would have a life.

We would have a life.

G4S have got a lot to answer for. Although Danny Fitzsimons was the murderer, G4S are responsible for the murder of my son and Darren Hoare. I ll never ever change that opinion never.

It was G4S that put Danny Fitzsimons in that position to be able to murder my son and his colleague.

There was a lot of faults made. If those faults hadn t have been made my son would still be alive today.

A BBC documentary about 18 months ago claimed that G4S was warned by one of its own staff not to employ Fitzsimons as the staff member felt he was a risk to the public.

An inquest into the shooting of Mr McGuigan, a former Royal Marine from Peebles in the Borders, is due to take place in the autumn.

His family and that of Mr Fitzsimons are calling for a public inquiry.

Liz Fitzsimons, Danny Fitzimons s stepmother, said: Compliant with G4S minimum standards? He wasn t passed on even 50%.

It was less than 50%.

No completed application form, no evidence on file to confirm it was checked, and yet they have repeatedly, repeatedly blamed Danny.

The sign-off of file Wasn t done.

So, he never should have gone should he?

Never should have gone.

A G4S spokesman said: In light of the impending inquest and in the interests of not prejudicing it, we are not commenting.

References

  1. ^ for killing Scot Paul McGuigan and Australian Darren Hoare (www.scotsman.com)