girl wearing windbreaker against a wall

It’s Not Only For Bad Weather

As the name suggests, a windbreaker is a jacket that keeps the winds and chills from your body. It also protects against light rain. Sudden light showers are almost an everyday occurrence in Singapore. A custom windbreaker is an essential addition to the wardrobe of all Singaporeans for various reasons. 

Windbreakers Are Lightweight

The classic windbreaker only has one or two light layers. It is a jacket that is not meant to keep you warm, so you probably wouldn’t wear it on a cold day. Fortunately, Singapore experiences relatively high temperatures that hardly ever fall below 23 degrees Celsius.         

Even though light showers are expected because of the high humidity, a heavy jacket can be cumbersome to carry and unnecessary in Singapore. A custom windbreaker is the best jacket to carry because it is light and will protect you from the rain. 

Bright-Coloured Windbreakers Have A Reflective Surface.

Many athletes use windbreakers as a protective barrier against the wind and light rains. However, bright-coloured windbreakers have a reflective surface that will alert other road users of their presence on the road. When walking out in the dark or rain, wearing a bright-coloured custom windbreaker will make you more visible. 

It Dries Easily

Since the custom windbreaker is made of very light fabric, it dries quickly. So, even when the rains find you outdoors, you need not worry about carrying a soaked jacket. Windbreakers are typically made from polycotton, nylon, or other cotton blends. 

The waterproofing finish ensures the water remains on the top layer, so you can easily walk or work without getting wet. This helps the jacket to dry quickly, especially if the showers end quickly. 

Windbreakers Are Available In Different Styles.

Unlike other jackets, you have options when it comes to choosing the style of custom windbreakers. For example, some windbreakers have half zips, and others have full zips. Some windbreakers have a hood, which you can easily remove or tuck in at the neck if you wish. 

The colours of the windbreakers are a style on their own, with some coming in one colour, and others have multiple colours. These will influence your overall look, so you can use your custom jacket to compliment your style.  

It Is Versatile

The custom windbreaker is the go-to jacket because of its versatility. You can wear your windbreaker when you go out for a run, hiking, skiing, biking, backpacking, or even when running errands. You can wear a windbreaker over your regular jacket for its waterproof feature. 

It Is Affordable

The windbreaker is one of the cheapest jackets in the market. This is probably because it is made from readily available fabric, and it does not require much to make one. The single-layer custom windbreaker may be cheaper than the insulated two-layered one. The cost may also vary depending on the type of fabric used. 

Ultimately, your wardrobe is richer with a custom windbreaker. You can choose to make it part of your weekend wear or protect your work clothes during the week. You can customize the windbreaker to make it unique using a logo, image, or text. 

The indemnity agreements were not always addressed by such terms when the inception of this insurance took place. In the 1800s, the agreement was not as well-established and detailed as it is today. To ensure cooperation and delivering promised results, governments, businesses and even individuals made contracts as legal documents in case any party intentionally or unintentionally did not fulfill the contract. According to an article in the New York Times, Haiti had to pay France an – independence debt in 1825, when it got freedom from French rule. These were to compensate the losses that French plantation businesses and individual owners suffered in slaves and land. This is one of the most historic cases known where indemnity was evident.

 

Another instance that is recorded as a case of indemnity happened in England, in 1884. Dr. David Bradley was wrongly accused and sentenced to 2 years in prison. In 1885, the Medical Defense Union was formed when other medical practitioners revolved against the decision. It was found that the apparent victim was a woman suffering from erotic delusions during and post-epileptic seizures. The falsely accused doctor was granted pardon and served only eight months in prison. Awareness to defend the doctor’s livelihood and reputation rose among other medical practitioners.

 

Indemnity is commonly seen in post-war situations where the country that wins the war demands from the losing country. The indemnity may take years or decades to pay off.

 

A classic example is when Germany paid as indemnity after its role in the World War I. The extent and amount of indemnity were so high that it was finally paid off only by 2010.   The word ‘indemnity’ comes from the Latin word – indemnis which means ‘unhurt, undamaged, without loss.’ Monetary payments were done in indemnity or replacement and repairs were offered.

 

Post-World War I, over the next few decades, professional indemnity insurance in Singapore has undergone drastic changes and revisions to better the insurance provisions for traders and governments. Due to globalization and privatization, the growth and development of large-scale industries affect the government directly.

 

Professional indemnity insurance has been able to provide their clients exactly what they expect and what they need for the smooth functioning of their business. When insurance can protect individuals despite unintentional errors in judgment or mishaps, these individuals can take a leap of faith by venturing into a new market as they learn more about the tricks of the trade.

A performance bond provides a security to an obligee in a project. During a project, a contractor obtains the bond, which acts as a guarantee that the work will be furnished by adhering to all agreed terms and conditions specified by the client.

 

A performance bond typically involves three parties, viz., the principal party or the contractor, the obligee who is protected under the bond, and the surety provider who issues the bond. When the obligee, also called the employer demands the performance bond prior to a project from the contractor, it essentially implies that the obligee wants a security that there will be no violation to the terms and conditions and set guidelines.

 

Apart from structural guidelines, which include design and description of the project, the bond also ensures that the contractor will work within the budget and finish the work within the stipulated time. If the contractor finishes the work without violating any of the terms and conditions, then the performance bond becomes ineffective and has no further significance.

 

However, if the contractor fails to meet the guidelines and that results in a loss for the owner, the surety company will compensate, either by paying for the financial losses or by hiring another contractor and will ensure that the job is completed.

 

Performance bonds ensure that the financial standing of the contractor has been evaluated so that the contractor does not declare insolvency in between the project. The surety company will analyze financial statements, cash flow, working capital, and net worth to prequalify the contractor. It also scrutinizes prior works undertaken by the contractor and their completion status, equipment and human resource required to execute the project, and verify the contractor’s relations with suppliers, project owners, and everyone else associated with projects.

 

A performance bond is not an insurance, it is a three-party agreement that a project will be completed as per the contract documents, and in the event of a violation of terms and conditions, surety company steps in to ensure that it does not impact the project.

 

It is advisable that the contract details and the terms and conditions are specified clearly prior to the commencement of the project, and the responsibility, understandably, lies with the owner to furnish the details of the project so that the surety company can evaluate every aspect correctly. Performance bonds, in short, are a protection for an obligee against any default by the contractor and it also helps the contractor obtain a project.

Irrespective of whether you plan to shop for a new marine insurance policy or contemplating to change your insurer, you need to ask certain important questions to the insurance agent. The responses can inform you whether your future or new insurance policy is worth it or worthless.

If you are looking for a comprehensive marine insurance, do consider Marine Insurance from Allegiance. They also have a wide range of other commercial insurance that you might need. Visit their site today.

1. When can you claim and to what extent you will get help?

Here are 2 different ways an insurer can handle a claim. These are known as hands-on an hands-off. Typically, a hands-off insurer opines that you as a policyholder should be doing all the work. Thus, you may have to look for a barge, a trucking service, salvor, and crane company before seeking for reimbursement. On the other hand, a hands-on insurer is ideally a specialty marine insurance provider. It has round the clock access to such services. Such an insurer can sensibly negotiate pricing and recruit and pay the relevant contractors on behalf of you. They can also coordinate to handle the repairs on your behalf.

2. Can you be certain to stay out of harm?

You should try to find out a marine insurance policy, which provides round the clock teams to handle emergency claims. Such teams should be immediately able to offer the necessary resources to prevent further damage. Plus, if you stay in a hurricane zone, there are policies that pay a captain so that it can be moved to a hurricane hole. Alternatively, they share the haul-out costs so that your vessel can be shifted to a higher ground.

3. Will the policy take care of consequential damage coverage?

As far as the field of marine insurance and boat insurance are concerned, catastrophic losses include incidents of fire, explosion, sinking, demasting, collision or stranding. These are known as consequences. A good marine insurance policy will provide coverage for the above-mentioned catastrophes. On the other hand, when you do not have coverage for consequential damage in your insurance policy, the insurer can say that almost all incidents of sinking or fire are disqualified for coverage as they occurred due to wear and tear.

4. Will you get any type of discounts or rewards during the policy?

Any smart policy ideally credits you when you have not filed for claims. It rewards you with certain benefits like diminishing deductibles. Such a reward reduces your deductible amount for all those years you did not file any claim. You could be also declared eligible for certain savings or discount for attending certain training or education programs.

Most people are unaware of the amount of maintenance, that a yacht requires on a periodic basis. There is no substitute for periodic yacht maintenance. Fortunately for the yacht owners, there is no dearth of yacht management firms which take care of these things at reasonable costs. Obviously, a well-maintained yacht is more likely to get a decent resale price, in comparison to an averagely maintained yacht.

Yacht maintenance is so crucial that, most marine insurance companies will deny insurance to yachts unless they are seaworthy. Just like the yachts vary in many aspects, the range of premiums for the insurance of yachts varies with several factors.

If you are looking for marine insurance in Singapore, you should consider Allegiance Marine Insurance. They cover both Marine Cargo and Marine Hull insurances. You should definitely look them up above if you are serious about protecting your marine goods or properties.

In this article we shall discuss, what goes into maintaining a yacht.

Prevention is better than cure

The only sure-fire to maintain yachts economically, is by scheduling cleanups regularly. Considering the corrosive nature of seawater and relative high humidity, the potential for systems in the yacht malfunctioning is extremely high. Preventive maintenance costs are always cheaper than repair works. It is absolutely crucial, that the yachts are maintained as its manufacturer has directed it. A good number of yachts have special needs like quality wax polishes and interior cleanses.

Yacht maintenance involves keeping tabs on all the hidden systems of yachts and not just the exteriors. Everything from the detailing to the internal wiring needs to be periodically checked, so that untoward yachting accidents can be kept at bay.

Another thing about yacht maintenance that is frequently ignored is the hull cleaning. The antifouling cover status needs to be thoroughly checked on the yachts, every now and then. While the underwater hull washing is pricey, it is one of those things which cannot be postponed for long in yacht maintenance.

Yacht paperwork

While maintaining the management records of yachts is entirely optional, if done regularly, it will ensure that the yacht fetches a decent resale price when it is sold or mortgaged. Yacht management records also come in handy during upgradation of yacht amenities. Most yacht management firms take care of this aspect for yachts under their care, so yacht owners need not have it done explicitly.

Yacht owners can request these records from the yacht management firms whenever they want. Fortunately yacht management firms are surprisingly affordable. A
lot of yacht upgrades can even be purchased from them, as they are more likely to offer better deals to the yachts already under their care. Due to this, owning a yacht has never been simpler.

The marine industry is one of the major ways of shipping huge cargo. A single ship can carry hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of cargo in one trip. This is a huge financial risk that the shipper takes every time they send a shipment. Investing in Marine Cargo insurance can reduce the exposure of this risk.

Listed here are a few man-made risks to cargo that are particularly good reasons to get marine cargo insurance.

Cargo theft

Piracy is one of the biggest risks that shipping companies have to face, especially if they are passing through high-risk areas such as The Red Sea. But this is not the only way that goods get stolen, theft through identity theft and fictitious pickups is increasing day by day.

Cargo lost at sea

There are more cargo containers that are being lost at sea every year. This is mainly due to overloading the ships above the limit. A survey conducted in 2014 stated that there are around 733 containers lost on an average each year in 2011, 2012 and 2013. This is considerably higher than the number of containers from 2008-2010.

Catastrophes

The World Shipping Council has defined catastrophic loss as a loss of more than 50 or more containers in a single incident. This can be due to various reasons such as fires or explosions.

Cargo damage

Damage to cargo is even more common than cargo loss and cargo theft. This damage can occur due to a number of reasons including; inadequate ventilation, ineffective sealing arrangements, lack of clear carriage instructions, contamination of the floors or containers, the wrong temperature settings that leads to condensation and spoilage of perishable goods, poor distribution of cargo weight, heavy containers stored on lighter ones, fragile cargo stored in high motion area and the list can go on.

Contractual requirement

Some shipper contracts make it obligatory for the shipper to purchase marine insurance.

Carrier liability coverage

In the event that the carrier is liable for damage or loss of the goods, the shipper will recover a very limited amount. This is covered in marine cargo insurance.

By getting insurance themselves, the shippers will have more control over the terms of the insurance. Allegiance helps in forming an insurance policy that caters to the needs of the shipper and is tailor-made for them.

Choosing a photo for customised photo gifts can be difficult. This is especially true if you have many great photos which would look equally good on personalised photo gifts. Fortunately, you may not need to narrow it down to one photo if the gift item can accommodate more than one photo. A photo collage contains many memories that can be fit on one gift item.

When creating a photo collage, while it has the advantage of using various photos, you need to ensure you follow a pattern. This will make the gift more special. Classifying the photos will make it easier for you to decide how you’d like the photo collage to appear.

Vacation photos

If the person receiving the gift enjoys travelling, collect some of his vacation photos. You can choose photos from his favourite destinations or combine photos from multiple vacations. You can also get photos of destinations on his bucket list. This shows you know him well and that you support his dreams.

Family photos

Family photos make the home cozy and lived in. This is probably why family photos are often at the heart of customised photo gifts. The special moments captured in the photos are often special. Giving someone a gift containing a collage of moments that they will look back on fondly will always be appreciated.

Pregnancy photos

You’ve probably noticed a trend of couples and families taking pregnancy photos and even including them in the photo displays in their home. This is a moment of transition and excitement for those expecting.

Depending on the kind of relationship you have with the expecting parents, you may choose to remind them of these fleeting moments, which pass too quickly. Personalised photo gifts with a pregnancy photo collage may need to be more specific or related to an event.

For example, it could be a gift to congratulate the couple on the arrival of their bundle of joy. Showcasing the journey is a great reminder that they will treasure for life.

Life achievements

Achievements in life are not written on stone. One person’s life’s achievements may not be as massive as someone else’s. This makes it much easier for you to create a collage because you only need to look back at events you’d consider life-changing. It could be a graduation, a sports event, first job, a promotion, or a wedding.

Special occasions

Photos under this category capture memorable events, such as a parent’s 60th birthday or a wedding. Such events include family members and friends who mean a lot to the person you are preparing a personalised photo gift. Creating a photo montage of such events helps to create memories that live on forever.

Pet Gallery

If your friend loves his pets and would do anything for them, you should take photos of his interaction with his pets. Over time, you will have a collection of photos to create a photo collage. If you are getting him wooden photo blocks with multiple faces, you can choose to use different photos.

While you may have greater flexibility when choosing photos for a photo collage, having photos that have one theme will make the customised gift quite attractive. Additionally, you have greater flexibility in choosing photos for future gifts if you use one theme at a time.

Introduction

In today’s competitive world every person works really hard pursuing a comfortable and successful lifestyle. But unfortunately, the toiling employees sometimes encounter various types of accidents at the workplace that might cause severe injuries. This usually happens because of the negligence of the employers to provide a secure environment in the work area and lack of proper training for the working employees to handle the machines or pieces of equipment.

In case you reside in Singapore and are going through such a painful situation due to the injuries that you received at the job, then it is inevitable for you to analyze the laws to understand if you are eligible for receiving work injury compensation: https://allegiance.com.sg/commercial-insurance/work-injury-compensation/

 What is the Work Injury Compensation Act?

The Work Injury Compensation Act (WICA) helps the employees to seek compensation for work-related diseases or injuries, without taking any legal action. In Singapore, this WICA Act is a law that aims to guide the injured employees to make a claim from the Ministry of Manpower. This law helps in providing an ample amount of cash as compensation for meeting medical and other expenses of the injured employee, but it is possible only when the required conditions are met.

Who are eligible for making Work Injury Compensation?

As long as you are an employee working under a contract of apprenticeship or contract of service, you are 100 percentile eligible for claiming compensation under the Singapore law. It is obligatory that every employer purchase the Work Injury Compensation insurance exclusively for the benefits of employees working for him in a local or foreign land. Following are the two category employees for whom the compensation insurance needs to be purchased.

  1. Employees performing manual work, irrespective of salary level.
  2. Secondly, employees performing non-manual work and earning less than $1600 per month. However, the government has announced that this threshold will be enlarged to $2100 in the year 2020 and then increased to $2600 in the year 2021.

In case your employer has not purchased work injury compensation insurance, do not panic. Because according to the law the employer still needs to pay the compensation claim.

Following working groups are not eligible for the cover:

  • Freelancers and independent contractors
  • Uniformed Employees of the Singapore Government such as police force and civil defense force etc.
  • Domestic employees

How does the claim process work on various types of workplace injuries?

As we all know every employee who suffered any type of workplace injury is absolutely entitled to claim compensation. But first, you need to prove that negligence of the employer is the prime cause of the injury. If your personal injuries occur during the period of your employment and while performing your assignment as an employee, then seeking work injury compensation should be a piece of cake. Other important situations employees can seek compensation are:

  • Accident occurred in a foreign land where the employee has traveled for performing his or her duties.
  • Accident occurred while traveling to work by the transportation provided by an employer.
  • Affected by occupational sickness.
  • Infected with disease due to the exposure of poisonous chemical or biological agents at the workplace.
  • Dependents of a deceased employee can claim for compensation if the employee dies because of the workplace injuries

What can an employee claim?

An eligible employee can easily claim work injury compensation for:

  1. Loss of wages for the days issued with medical leave and being hospitalized.
  2. Medical expenses that cover your medication, hospital bills, and other related charges.
  3. Lump-sum compensation exclusively for employees who died or affected with permanent incapacity.

 

The Singapore Work Injury Compensation Act (WICA) allows an employee to get the following kinds of compensations for any work-related injury or a medical condition. Read more about this at Allegiance’s Work Injury Compensation webpage.

  • Medical leave wages
  • Medical expenses
  • High compensation

Medical leave payments 

This is payable for the working days one is on medical leave due to an injury or disease caused during work. This covers the period for which the employee has to stay in a hospital or covered by the Singapore registered doctors. Medical leave wages are not payable for all days of no work including the days of break and the public holidays. It is not taxable because this is not an income but a compensation.

One is entitled to get medical leave pays under WICA as per the limits and rates below.

  • Amount of casualty medical leave compensation: The complete average monthly income up to 14 days or less. And from the 15th day to 1 year from the date of the accident, the entitlement is 2/3rd of the average monthly income.
  • Amount of hospitalization compensation: The average monthly income up to 60 days or less. And the entitlement comes to 2/3rd of the average monthly income from the 61st day to 1 year from the date of the accident.

Additionally, the employees who are allotted light duties instead of availing medical leave or hospitalization are also entitled to get compensation for any shortfall of earning from September 2020.

They are to receive compensation for the actual shortfall of income from their average monthly income when it is for 14 days or less. And they will be compensated the actual shortfall form 2/3rd of their average monthly income for the period from 15th day to 1 year.

Medical expenses

One is entitled to get paid for the medical expenses that help an early restoration of work. The following are some examples of the types of medical expenses allowed.

  • Ambulance charges for emergency medical transport
  • Artificial limbs
  • Cost of medicine
  • Medical consultation fees
  • Medical report fees
  • Surgical appliances
  • Treatment fees
  • Ward charges

One is also entitled to get compensated for Physiotherapy, Occupational therapy, Chiropractic treatment, and Traditional Chinese Medicine only when those are prescribed and charged by medical practitioners registered in Singapore.

The current maximum limit for this is $36000 or 1 year from the date of the accident, whichever is earlier. However, it will be raised to $45000 from January 2020.

Lump-amount compensation

When an employee turns permanently incapacitated due to a work-related accident or illness, he or she is entitled to such compensation. The amount is calculated as average monthly income x age multiplying factor x % permanent incapacity assessed by registered medical practitioners. In case of death, this is calculated as average monthly earnings x age multiplying factor and paid to the dependant of the deceased.

From January 2020, the limit of compensation for permanent incapacity is raised from $88000 to $97000 minimum and $262000 to $289000 maximum.

The compensation for death is also raised from $69000 to $76000 minimum and $204000 to $225000.

 

 

 

Singapore government has passed a law recently that covers the work injury compensation. This law helps the employee who is injured while working for the employer. Although its the duty of the employer to compensate the employee for the injury but, you must know the complete process to file the claim. Here is a complete guide on claiming work injury compensation:

For cases with temporary incapacity

If you are the one with an injury that lead to temporary incapacity, the process would be very straight. You have to simply report about the accident to your employer as soon as possible and ask for compensation, lost earning and treatment for the work-related accident.

Report the Accident

  1. The first thing that you have to do after getting injured is to get the medical help and report about the same to the employer. If you don’t do that, the employer may doubt your injury and they may refuse the compensation saying that the injury or illness was sustained before the work itself.
  2. If you have been hospitalized for a minimum of 24 hours and need to have MC of 4 days (consecutive days is not mandatory) then its the duty of your employer to inform the same to MOM
  3. You’ll have to handover the original MC to the employer for the claim of your medical expenses. Make sure that you keep a copy of the MC with you.
  4. You must also inform the MOM if the employer denies or refuse to pay your medical bills and lost earnings or does not inform MOM about the situation.

For the people with permanent incapacity

People who have an injury with permanent incapacity, the process is a bit complex.

  1. Inform about the situation to your employer immediately. The employer should pay the medial leave wages and also your medical bills.
  2. Its the duty of the employer to inform the same to MOM and then MOM will send you the claim application form.
  3. As you receive the form, you can make the choice whether you want to make a claim under WICA or not.
  4. If you are ready with the claim from WICA, then you will have to go for the medical examination that should explain the extent of your incapacity. Make sure that you attend all the medical assessments, otherwise you may face issues for the claim. You are free to seek treatment from any hospital of your choice but your company may ask you to seek treatment in their approved hospitals.
  5. As the process completes, you will get a notice notifying about the insurer amount and other things.

You are free to file a claim for WICA on your own and if you wish you can hire a lawyer too who will assist you the matter further.

Filing a Civil Claim

Although WICA is created to help employees in case of emergency situations, you can even file a civil claim from the employer. But make sure that you cannot file both civil claims and work-place related injury claims at the same time.

What causes neck twitching and how to stop it?

 

Shoulder and neck pain have become really common among people and there are a lot of factors that need to be looked into before starting the treatment of the neck and shoulder pain. The main reasons are a sedentary lifestyle and improper posture. Here are a few main points that will help you address the issue.

If you are suffering from some form of neck or shoulder pain, and normal treatment or exercise does not work for you, you can consider alternative therapy such as magnetic therapy products. One example is a neck pain relief necklace. PIP Elekiban Singapore is the perfect solution you are looking for. They have the regular magnetic plasters aka PIP Elekiban, magnetic necklace aka PIP Magneloop and other support products aka PIP Support. Check their website out today.

There is some more information on this at Scary Symptoms.

 

What causes neck twitching?

 

Have your neck and shoulder areas been twitching lately? “For almost everyone-particularly young healthy persons- a simple twitch of a muscle anywhere in the body is completely normal and nothing to worry about”. Read More Here!

 

More often than not twitching is considered to be really normal and not something that you should be worried about. Reasons behind it could be dehydration, stress, overstraining, and magnesium deficiency. Moreover, while doing heavy workouts, the muscles of the neck do not get affected at all but the shoulder muscles do. So, in case you are experiencing it, the reason could be that you might have worked out too much causing the muscles to twitch.

 

Even factors like sleep deprivation as well as stress are known to cause twitching. Stress is usually the main contributor to most of the ailments and you should make sure to reduce stress.

 

Paul Ingraham had a thoughtful article published at Pain Science which gives you a subtle guidance in this regard.

 

What are the red flags for you to identify?

 

A fierce headache, and/or an inability to bend the head forward (nuchal rigidity), and/or fever, and/or altered mental state are all symptoms of meningitis (inflammation of the membranes covering the brain and spinal cord, caused by infection or drug side effects). Read More Here!

 

Twitching as such is not harmful but you it can be alarming if you witness other symptoms. For example, sudden fever and chills, sudden weight loss, and severe headache.  A general poor coordination in the body, heavy feeling and feel week can be linked to spinal cord issues.

 

At times, when there are issues with the upper spinal cord, then you might end up feeling nausea and vomiting. If you regularly experience morning stiffness then it is certainly not a good sign. This is when you should see your doctor to get professional help.

 

You can read this article by Amy Lucas at Fulk Chiropractic.

 

How to treat muscle spasm?

 

If your muscles are in spasm, you don’t have to resort to drugs or shots to numb the area.  There are several natural muscle spasm treatment options available – both at home and at your local chiropractic clinic. Read More Here!

 

Whenever you experience muscle spasm the first thing that you need to do is to stop whatever it is that you are doing and rub or massage the area which is paining gently. Taking enough rest is also important for you to recover from the same. Next is to stretch. Stretching helps a great deal in treating the muscle spasms. However, do not do as rigorously as you might end up causing more harm.

 

Perform light exercises on a regular basis to prevent such issues in the future. Muscle spasms in the back and shoulder can be quite daunting and can take a toll on your health and wellbeing. In order to keep the spasms at bay, you must exercise regularly. Thus, twitching is not harmful but if you experience spasms then you need to be more vigilant and approach its treatment with care. You can use ice packs on the affected area, you can stretch every now and again throughout the day to maintain your health. While sleeping, you should have a proper posture and avoid hunching or slouching while walking.

 

Taking regular breaks is also important since if you sit in the same position hooked to the computer for a longer period of time then you will end up feeling neck and back pain. For keeping your body stress free, you should indulge in activities like meditation. Meditation naturally lowers the stress in your body which can help you relieve pain. Neck and back spasms are quite common and with the right preventive measures, you can surely get rid of them. As a preventive measure, you should avoid using the electronic gadgets continuously that make you strain your neck. Overstraining in the gym should also be avoided. A little bit of caution and help you a lot in a long way.


Know All About Vehicle To Vehicle Communication

V2V or vehicle-to-vehicle communication is the ability to exchange information between vehicles wirelessly to know about the position and speed of the other surrounding vehicles. The communication technology shows excellent potential to help in avoiding collisions or clashes, improve the environment and ease out traffic congestion. However is greatest merits can be only accomplished if all the vehicles are able to communicate with one another. V2V uses the Dedicated Short-Range Communications or DSRC technology, which is a standard, established by bodies such as IS and FCC.

If you are looking for a DSRC Technology provider in Singapore, you should consider ATT Systems Group. You can view their site here: http://www.attsystemsgroup.com/dedicated-short-range-communications-dsrc

Wireless exchange of data between vehicles

To put it even more simply, V2v communication transmits data wirelessly between various motor vehicles. The V2V communication tries to prevent the occurrence of accidents by facilitating running vehicles to exchange their speed and position data to each other within an ad-hoc mesh network. Based on the manner in which the implementation of the technology has been done, the driver of the vehicle may only get a warning if there is an imminent threat of an accident. Or, the car may itself take certain preemptive actions like use the brakes to slow down its speed.

Many people anticipate that the effectiveness of V2V communication will be more as compared to the existing OEM or original equipment manufacturer embedded solutions for threats such as detection of blind spots, lane departure, a backup camera, rear park sonar, and adaptive cruise control. The reason is that the V2V technology allows a 360-degree view of the surrounding threats. The communication is another step towards the growing popularity of IoT or Internet of Things.

Vehicles that can use V2V technology

V2V communication technology can be used by vehicles that range from trucks to cars and from motorcycles to buses. In fact, even pedestrians and bicycles can benefit from the V2V communication very seem to improve their visibility against the motorists. Plus, vehicle information transmitted cannot identify the vehicle or driver certain technical controls ensure prevention of system tampering or vehicle tracking.

The Vehicle-to-vehicle communication technology may also enhance the performance level of the vehicle safety systems so that precious lives can be saved. In 2015, the police reported incidents of motor vehicle crashes stood at a figure of 5.6 million. The figures of fatal accidents according to police-reported crashes of motor vehicles are on a continuous rise. Implementation of connected vehicle technologies provides the tools that the driver requires to anticipate possible collisions and drastically lower the incidents of accidents and loss of lives every year.


What The Future Holds For Biometric Security?

There are hardly any high end devices right now which do not come with some form of biometric security feature built into it. No matter how apprehensive people are about it, the fact that the future of security is in biometric authentication is now well understood. Just a few years back, biometric authentication like iris recognition system and fingerprints scanners sounded like sci-fi movie materials. However, now they are a common feature in most high end devices.

If you are looking for an Iris Recognition System for your company, you should consider ATT Systems Iris Recognition System. They have the expertise and know-how to assist you on your technical needs and implementing the systems. You should check them out.

As technology advances and biometric scanner�s costs come down, they will eventually become commonplace just like the other gadgets. Even though biometric scanners were already featured in many prototype gadgets, people took notice of it only when the iPhones started sporting them. With simplification of technological solutions becoming the norm, biometric security seemed like the next logical step in personal security. While it is not all bad, most people are still unsure about its future. In this article we shall discuss, what the future holds for biometric security.

The question of reliability
According to most people, operating a biometric security system is one of the most cumbersome experiences in their lives. While most biometric security measures are not convenient as such, the real question people should focus on is how secure it really is. According to a company working on biometric authentication, measures like iris scans are found to be more secure than the convenient fingerprint authentication. While this is still debatable, technology still has a long way to go before biometric security solutions become mainstream.

Good technologies have always been embraced by the people
Most experts feel that, people will become amenable to biometric security measures as time passes. Most revolutionary technologies were faced with scepticism at first and once the teething troubles settled down, people became more welcoming of it. There is no reason that the same cannot happen to biometric security measures as well. But all of this is dependent on one key requirement and that is convenience. Companies will have to find ways to make, usage of biometric security measures as convenient as possible, if they are to have any hope of
making it mainstream in the future. Once the inconvenience part is dealt with, there are no other major hurdles to the ubiquity of biometric security measures. While this is not going to be easy, the market it will unravel to the biometric security companies is well worth the effort and capital that it demands.

What are the types of professional liability insurance available and for whom?

In the age of lawsuits, any real or perceived mistakes on the part of provider of professional services, can make even an unsuspected client changed his mind and brought the provider to court. Due to this reason, it is good for those who are in certain line of risky businesses, to be ahead of the game by paying premium for professional liability insurance. The benefits are so huge, and the most important thing is the confidence that the business owners and the clients can appreciate when negotiating any transactions.

If you are looking for a corporate or personal insurance provider, you should consider Allegiance Associates. They cover a wide range of professional insurance in Singapore. You should check out their site here: https://www.allegiance.com.sg

In the US, nearly a half of small-business owners were involved or at least threatened with lawsuits. The cost of litigation can easily achieve thousands of dollars in no time. Consider also the amount of time that a company needs to spend on the case before the settlement of a lawsuit. Going to and fro court, lawyer’s office and negotiations, all those can affect the business badly. The company that must face litigation can also suffer reputational damage, something that every company wish it never must go through. An article by Aliya Daya at Rogers Insurance delves into the Effors and Omissions (E&O) insurance which is among the most commonly claimed in the business world.

Errors and Omissions (E&O) liability coverage for service providers and consultancy business

Errors & Omissions Liability protects the business professional by shielding their assets and paying for defense and potentially onerous legal costs if a client makes a claim. It protects the professional’s clients by ensuring there will be adequate funds to pay for damages incurred if the professional’s services are deemed to be faulty.

We often associate the word “professional” with physicians, lawyers, accountants, engineers or other people who require extensive education and training to perform their duties, but you do not need to be a doctor or lawyer to have a professional liability exposure. Virtually any business that performs a service or provides professional advice to a client in exchange for financial compensation can be sued on the basis that it failed to meet its professional obligations. Read more here!

Based on the article, we can see how permeating the professional liability insurance can be because it is not limited to certain famous career such as doctors, lawyers and accountants. We cannot help to think that only certain types of professions might require this kind of insurance, because those professions are directly dealing with life and death situations such as in the medical and legal field, or involves huge sums of money such as in accountancy. But the truth is, any contract might involve oversight and errors, or some portions of the contract might not be able to be delivered as promised, and there could failure to perform according to industry standards. That is why Gabriella Messina stressed the difference between Errors and Omissions (E&O) insurance with malpractice insurance in POMS Association blog.

What is malpractice insurance and how did it differ from E&O

Professions That Require E&O Coverage

Many different job sectors require professional liability coverage under different names and forms. Errors and Omissions is used by financial brokers, professional consultants, and insurance agents, as well as accountants, engineers, and contractors. Contractors must also be surety bonded.

Malpractice Insurance

For doctors, dentists, and other medical practitioners, professional liability insurance is called malpractice insurance. States require that medical professionals have current malpractice coverage to work in hospitals and other medical facilities. Lawyers are also required to carry malpractice insurance to cover any real or perceived failure to render professional services. Read more here!

 

One case of medical malpractice involved an elderly woman who was overdosed 1,000 times the correct radioactive iodine needed for her treatment. After the overdose, she developed thyroid gland disorder and later lymphoma, a form of blood cancer. Although the case was finally settled out of court, but a negligence of this kind on the part of the doctor can lead to high litigation cost that requires medical doctors to be covered by malpractice insurance.

Not only doctors can buy this type of insurance, but also Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners and hospitals. Some malpractice insurance covers also teaching hospital, children’s hospital, rehabilitation center, specialty hospital and hospital’s integrated delivery system.

So instead of E&O liability coverage, the insurance specially designed for medical field is called malpractice insurance. While for insurance brokers and contractor, there is another type of coverage called surety bond. Shire Lyon has more to say about this at Insurance News Net.

Surety bond for insurance brokers

First, you’ll need to decide on the surety bond agency you’d like to use. It’s a good idea to search reviews before choosing. You should know that a bonding agency usually doesn’t underwrite its own bonds. The agency is appointed by surety bond companies, which typically perform the underwriting.

 

It’s beneficial to find a bonding agency that is a managing general underwriter (MGU), who is responsible for underwriting and will educate you on surety bond claims. MGUs have faster approval processes and will act as your claims advocate should you ever have a claim.

 

Once you choose your agency, check to see if they sell insurance broker bonds, since not all agencies sell all bonds. Most agencies have online application forms, so you can probably complete this part of the process from the comfort of your couch. Read more here!

 

If you are an insurance broker, you need to be covered by surety bond to ensure that your customers will be protected in any events of misconduct. There are cases when the premium money paid by the customers did not reach the company at all, but was misappropriated by the broker. Therefore, the coverage is very important and becomes part of professional license requirement.

In the end, no matter in what field you are currently working, and what types of professional liability coverage is suitable for your professional field or businesses, having your lifetime career protected and covered is obviously the wisest action to take. It can boost your confidence knowing the money is there to face any risk of tedious litigation process or challenging court days.

Entrepreneurs are apprehensive of implementing the online appointment system for various reasons. Such fears include that the applications are not easy to use and customers will fail to turn up after booking by themselves. However, you need not worry as a majority of these concerns are simply myths. This article debunks some of the most common myths associated with online appointment system.

For a good online appointment system, you should consider ATT Systems Online Appointment System. Their system can capture bookings at any time and remind clients not to have No Show bookings. If you are looking to purchase an Online Appointment System do check out their site here: http://www.attsystemsgroup.com/appointment-management-systems-ams

Myth 1: Online appointment means that the entrepreneur will have lesser control on their schedule

On the contrary, online appointment gives you greater control on your schedule and also reduces the efforts needed to organize those appointments. For instance, if you own a salon and have hired 2 staffs and do not work full-time, this information can be easily included in your schedule so that customers can find out the available time slots.

It eliminates the requirement for an entrepreneur to spend many hours tweaking the appointments so that all the customers get the slot they are looking for. As it will be an automated system, a notification will be sent to the customers when a slot they want to reserve is already booked. Thus, you can save the time spent on a lengthy phone call and use that time to do more important tasks.

Myth 2: Online appointment is not suitable for the demography of the customer

It is a complete misconception as about 2.3 billion people from all over the world use smartphones today. As the same set of people are using these phone for accessing social media an online banking, scheduling appointment online will be a child’s play altogether in case the layout of the online scheduler you are using is intuitive and straightforward.

Additionally, 20% of the above members are more than 55-year-old. Thus, age is definitely not an important factor for one’s ability to book appointments online.

Myth 3: Booking online does not offer the same superior quality of customer service since there is a less personal touch

With the growing popularity of online booking, a larger population of customers would be looking for more choices. It is not a big concern simply because a customer is not interacting with a customer service representative. In fact, several of them would rather like to enjoy the flexibility of booking whenever they want to from any device of their choice.

Online appointment system can add its personal touch by sending confirmations electronically. The confirmation automatically shares the details of the appointment with the customers.

In today’s day and age, all companies want to be global in their approach. This means employing foreign employees. While foreign worker insurance is mandatory in many countries including Singapore, it has many advantages. Getting this insurance will not only protect your employee but you as well.

Advantages of getting this insurance:

  • Saves you from high medical bills

No one can predict when misfortune can strike. But a medical emergency not only means health issues for your employee, it also hurts your pocket. That is why this was made mandatory by the government to protect employers from high medical bills.

  • Added perk for the employee

In this increasingly competitive market, potential employees select those companies who provide the most incentives along with the salary. They want a comprehensive package that takes care of their welfare. For foreign employees, especially, they are away from their countries and are naturally apprehensive of how they will be taken care of should they fall ill in a foreign country. The better comprehensive package you offer, the higher the chances of you getting the cream of foreign applicants for your company.

  • Repatriation expenses

In case a foreign employee dies or is permanently disabled, this insurance indemnifies you from bearing the cost of transferring the body to his/her home country.

  • Personal accident during off hours

Depending on the comprehensiveness of the insurance policy, several important benefits are covered.

  • Disability, dismemberment due to any accident
  • Some plans even safeguards your employees against any financial issues due to loss of income; in case disability from the accident prevents the employee to be able to work
  • Surgery, dental, maternity expenses, are some of the areas covered by these insurance companies

 

  • Outpatient treatment

Some amount of outpatient treatment is always covered by all types of insurance; however the coverage varies. From dental to general check up to specialist consultation and cost of tests, there are a variety of outpatient coverage options.

This type of insurance protects both you and the employee for a minimal fee. It protects you from incurring financial loss and insures the employee’s life and takes care of any additional cost should tragedy occur. It also earns you good will from the employee. This in turn ensures lesser attrition over compensations offered, and higher chances of attracting the best in the market. Therefore choose the coverage that is beneficial for both you and your foreign employees.

 

Most employees consider health insurance as the most important perk in their remuneration package and many studies and surveys have shown that a good health insurance plan increases the chances of retention and improving recruitment quality. It is mandatory for all those who are employing foreigners in their companies to get foreign worker medical insurance in most countries, including Singapore. However, not all insurance plans offer a good bargain and therefore should not be selected blindly.

Important points to remember while selecting the right insurance:

  • Compare the policies

Never look at just one insurance company’s plan, especially if you’re planning to have more than one foreign employee. The policy needs to be beneficial for both you and the employee. Look at at least a few options before freezing in on one.

The following factors should be kept in mind while comparing policies:

  • Cost

How much does the policy cost you? Is this something that you can bear even if your number of foreign employees increases? What is the cost of the plan, the deductibles, and the co-insurance costs (if any)? How much of it can be borne by the company? It also should be noted that deductibles and co-insurance costs should not be such that it affects the employee’s salary significantly.

  • Coverage

Some policies limit coverage to specific conditions or provide the absolute minimum coverage. These details are mostly written in fine print, so they need to be read carefully. Insurance policies that cover diseases should usually be avoided as their charges are higher than the chances of contracting one.

  • Reimbursement

Their compensation or reimbursements for individual incidents should be viewed to see whether the coverage actually does justice to hospital charges and doctor’s fees. Consulting a physician might be a good idea to understand if the amount mentioned seems reasonable or not.

 

  • Check the market

It is always good to know which policies competitors and other companies use for their foreign employees. It helps you to get an idea of the quality of service provided. In this day and age, when several insurance companies are facing bankruptcy issues, one can’t be too careful.

  • Get a broker

In case this overwhelms you, or you don’t have the time to review the policies in such detail you can always get a broker to compare policies for you. However, brokers are not always ethical or reliable and can influence the rates offered by insurance companies. Therefore, the background of brokers too, must be thoroughly investigated.

Once the foreign worker insurance policy is bought, you can’t reverse it without incurring some loss. Choose the one that benefits both you and the employee and spend time to find the right insurance policy.

It is quite easy to understand why you need to purchase coverage for your personal vehicle. You would like to safeguard your property as well as protect the lives of your dear ones. Moreover, it is compulsory by law in several States. But to know when to avail commercial insurance is a completely different fall fame altogether. However, there are some kinds of vehicle usage, which do not fall within the scope of a personal vehicle insurance policy. If you are an entrepreneur or a businessman and are using a vehicle exclusively for your business, then commercial vehicle insurance is needed. Moreover, when your vehicle has commercial tags, you must purchase a commercial coverage for it.

There are several instances when a businessman may be using the same vehicle for both pleasures as well as business. When your business owns a vehicle, you need to ensure that the. Business’s name appears on your policy not in your name but as a “principal insured”. Such a step will help remove confusions when you may require to file your claim or done files a claim against you.

Whether you should purchase commercial vehicle insurance in Singapore will also depend on the type of driving done by you. A reputable insurance agent will probe for detailed information about how your business uses the said vehicle, who will be the drivers and in case you have hired employees, whether they have the likelihood of driving their personal vehicles for your business.

Business use

You need to understand when a vehicle is known to be deployed for business use. A vehicle used for business is one that is used for commercial purposes for at least more than three times on an average during a period of 30 days. If you find they it is happening in your case, then commercial vehicle insurance is something that you should definitely go for.

What is defined as “business use”?

This is a crucial concept with respect to commercial vehicle insurance. When you merely use a vehicle to commute to and fro from your main workplace, it is regarded as commuting and you need not purchase a commercial policy. In fact, then the vehicle is required to be covered within the ambit of personal vehicle insurance. But when you are driving the same car to travel to clients? Offices or other job sites, vases based on how frequently you do it and your work type, you could be requiring commercial vehicle insurance .

Though the key coverage for the personal auto policy and its commercial counterpart may look same, both of them differ in several technical aspects. Contact your insurance agents to explain the distinctions properly.

Being an owner of a business and operating it efficiently means that you can be exposed to certain financial and legal risks. But you can protect your company and yourself by purchasing commercial liability coverage.

Defining commercial liability insurance

Your business needs liability insurance to safeguard its assets and to pay for the financial and legal obligations from time to time. For instance, when someone gets injured within the premises of your workplace, the expenses related to the person’s medical bills and other costs as the result of an accident can be covered by your commercial liability coverage. Moreover, such an insurance policy can also cover the legal fees for defending any lawsuits against your business and for settlement of cases.

Is it a necessity for your business?

On many occasions, it may feel that you can do away with liability insurance since it is not likely that your company will file a claim ever. But, contrary to what many people perceive commercial liability coverage is a cost-effective and a sensible investment. You should remember that if an accident takes place, it can harm your business both financially and legally. Such an unfortunate situation can occur at any time. So, in case you do not have commercial liability coverage, make sure that you purchase one on a priority basis.

Do you need commercial liability coverage for a home business?

There are some businesses that are operated from homes. So, the question is if you are one of those and have purchased homeowners coverage, does your business have protection against liability? The answer is in negative for sure. Home insurance does not include any form of business activity. However, you may require different kinds of protection, depending on your employees, customers or other business issues.

Thus the bottom line of this discussion is that a business can be a risky proposition. When you get the right liability policy, it can be helpful for any kind of challenges your venture may face. But different ventures will be associated with different kinds of risks. So, the same kind of insurance solution may not fit all the businesses. You can take the help of an expert to know what kind of commercial liability insurance is needed for your business.

While running your venture, you need to interact with vendors, clients, suppliers, contractors, employees and others. You never know who can make claims against your company. So, it is important for you to defend your business against such claims of bodily injury, property damage etc.

Allegiance can provide answers all your queries on commercial liability insurance related services or levy bond.

Low Maintenance Types of Upholstery

The whole look of the furniture in any room depends mostly on the upholstery that is used on it. Choosing the kind of upholstery that is most suited to ones needs can sometime be a mammoth task as there are many varieties of colours and textures to choose from. One of the major criteria that come into play while choosing upholstery is easy maintenance. Here are a few types of low maintenance upholstery Singapore.

Natural fibres are made from natural origin such as wool, jute, cotton, flax, etc. These fibres are anti-allergenic, friendly to the environment and can also breathe easily.

Cotton is soft and breathable material, it is also durable, easy to clean and comfortable. As the price is also not very high it is a very economical type of upholstery. Cotton blends can also be used to increase strength and durability of the fabric as well as to add texture to it.

Linen is another natural fibre that is usually used for upholstery and is a great choice for the living room. It is elegant, unpretentious and most importantly it is resistant to pilling and soiling.

Wool upholstery is the most versatile as they can vary in texture and pattern. It is a very sturdy and durable kind of fabric. Along with this, wool has very good resistance to fading, wrinkling, pilling and soiling. Wool is easy to clean and maintain and remains as beautiful as the first day for many years.

Synthetic fibres are more resistant to fading and staining than natural ones. Thus a blend between a natural fibre and synthetic one are most commonly used.

Acrylic fibres are soft and warm; they are usually very light but have a high resistance to wearing, wrinkling, fading and soiling. They retain their colour even if kept in the sun for a long time.

Nylon is one of the strongest fibres, when blending nylon with other fabrics increases its durability, stain resistance and reduces wrinkling.

Polyester like nylon is most commonly used as a blend. It is durable and strong and is resistant to exposure to sunlight.

Suede and leather may not technically be fabric but are increasingly being used in furniture. The major advantages of leather are that it is soft to touch, durable, can come in a variety of textures, and is very easy to maintain as it is stain resistant.

SAN DIEGO (10/8)- San Diego real estate developer and founder of the National Federation of Filipino-American Republicans (NFFAR) resigned from his post and withdrew his endorsement of presidential candidate Senator John McCain (R-AZ) amidst an air of speculation and confusion.  In a written statement, Diaz stated, “I am resigning as Chairman of NFFAR.  It was a hard decision on my part.  However, I believe that I have to do it because of what has been happening in the McCain campaign…  I endorsed McCain before the California primary believing that he was the right man for the job.  I was wrong.  His selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate and his decision a few days ago to resort to personal attacks on Obama’s character and integrity run counter to my personal beliefs and core values.  I have lost my respect for McCain and I believe that a McCain/Palin administration would only worsen the economic situation in the country”

Part of his the reason for sudden resignation could also be found at his website (see:www.perryscope.org ) wherein he posted (10/3) what is believed to be a series of policy disagreements between Diaz and specifically against Sarah Palin offer insight into the resignation.

In regards to the environment Diaz pointed out that, “Sarah Palin falsely claimed that she was the first governor to form a climate change subcabinet, when at least 28 states had already taken action”.  Furthermore he pointed out that, “Sarah Palin said “I don’t want to argue about the causes” for global warming, when she has clearly taken the position that she doesn’t not believe it is man-made”.

In regards to the issue of Medicare reform, Diaz posted one piece stating, “In her closing remarks at the vice-presidential debate Thursday night, Ms. Palin referred earnestly, if loosely, to a quote from Ronald Reagan. He had warned that if Americans weren’t vigilant in protecting their freedom, they would find themselves spending their “sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it was like in America when men were free.” What Ms. Palin didn’t say was that the menace to freedom that Reagan was talking about was Medicare. As the historian Robert Dallek has pointed out, Reagan “saw Medicare as the advance wave of socialism, which would ‘invade every area of freedom in this country”.  Furthermore, “Palin says taxes wouldn’t go up under the McCain health care plan, a fact even his own campaign has acknowledged isn’t true”.  Also it is posted, “Palin claimed Obama’s health plan is “government run” which has been widely debunked as a “canard”…”

In regards to the War on Terror, Diaz stated, “Palin repeated what the AP called the “highly misleading” attack that Obama opposed funding for the troops, and Factcheck.org notes that the same methodology would lead to the same conclusion for McCain”. In regards to the recent “surge”, Diaz states “Palin said that [McKiernan] did not say a surge wouldn’t work in Afghanistan, when just yesterday he said “The word I don’t use for Afghanistan is ’surge,’ ” McKiernan stressed, saying that what is required is a “sustained commitment” to a counterinsurgency effort that could last many years and would ultimately require a political, not military, solution…”  Another point of contention was the issue of civilian deaths in Iraq, where, “Sarah Palin said “Obama had said that all we’re doing in Afghanistan is air raiding villages and killing civilians and such a reckless, reckless comment and untrue comment again hurts our cause. That’s not what we are doing there.” Unfortunately, the Associated Press says that Obama was right in discussing a critically important point about avoiding civilian casualties”.

The harshest complaints are leveled regarding the McCain /Palin campaign in regards to the economy.  In regards to partisanship, Diaz stated, “Palin said McCain is “known for putting partisan politics aside to just get the job done,” but he has voted with Bush 90% of the time in the Senate and bragged about his support for Bush on important issues”.  Diaz also pointed out that in regards to taxes, “Palin repeated the attack that Obama voted for higher taxes 94 times, which the New York Times says is “false,” CNN says is “Misleading,” and FactCheck.orgsays is “inflated”.  As for the economy, “Palin tried to say “John McCain saying our economy was strong” was taken out of context, but McCain has used the phrase “The Fundamentals Of The Economy Are Strong” at least 16 times this year…”

While it is uncertain what will happen next for the real-estate developer.  It is fairly certain that this sudden change of opinion will have a drastic effect on the presidential election, leaving the Republicans with less than 4 weeks to select a new community to draw from the Filipino-American community.

-Jose Ricardo G. Bondoc

Leno urges Governor to take immediate action to stop the contamination of California homes

SAN FRANCISCO, CA— Highlighting a recent study showing that Californians have twice as much toxic halogenated fire retardants in our blood than the national average, Assemblyman Mark Leno urged the Governor today to take immediate action to stop the addition of these chemicals to furniture and baby products sold in California.  The findings, published in the academic journal Environmental Science and Technology on Wednesday points to California’s obscure furniture flammability regulation, Technical Bulletin (TB) 117 as the cause.

“This report confirms our worst fears about the chemical disaster in virtually every home in California,” said Assemblyman Leno. “TB 117 is poisoning our homes, our kids, and our mother’s milk with toxic fire retardants that cause thyroid hormone disruptions and damage the developing reproductive and nervous systems in infants and children.  I am urging the Governor to do everything in his power to stop it.”

The study, conducted by the Silent Spring Institute, UC Berkeley, and Harvard University, also found that dust in California homes is contaminated with the now banned halogenated fire retardant penta-BDE at 4 to 10 times the levels measured nationally and 200 times more than in Europe.  It can also be found in “nearly every species across the globe.”

Assemblyman Leno, along with advocates at Friends of the Earth, Making Our Milk Safe (MOMS), and firefighters have been fighting for the last two years to replace TB 117, a 1970’s era flammability standard responsible for the use of toxic fire retardants in baby products and furniture.  Leno’s AB 706, which failed passage under pressure from the chemical industry, would have replaced TB 117 with a new cigarette ignition resistance standard proposed by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, providing superior fire safety while eliminating toxic exposure.

“The Governor should order the immediate suspension of TB 117, require the Bureau to enforce the current ban on penta-BDE in imported furniture, accelerate the development of an alternatives assessment process in the Green Chemistry Initiative, and use alternatives assessment to look first at halogenated fire retardants found in furniture,” said Leno.

Virtually every Californian tested has been found to have fire retardants stored in their bodies, with babies showing the highest levels.  Halogenated fire retardants pass from mothers’ bodies to children during pregnancy and through breast milk. Levels of these chemicals have increased 40-fold in human breast milk since the 1970s. 

This increase coincides with the expanded use of fire retardants in order to comply with California’s TB 117. Previous studies have shown that elevated cancer rates among firefighters compared with the general population, likely result from workplace exposure to carcinogens like dioxins and furans, which are formed when PBDE fire retardants burn.

San Francisco, CA – The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) requires applicants who seek permanent residency (green card) or adjust their current status to meet vaccination requirements on a broad range of vaccine- preventable diseases. Effective July 1, 2008, the USCIS has added five new vaccines as recommended by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices to the Medical Admissibility Review requirements. Applicants will be required to have the following age-appropriate additional vaccinations: Rotavirus (gastroenteritis) Hepatitis A, Meningococcal (meningitis), Human papillomavirus (cervical cancer) and Zoster (shingles).

While APIAHF supports the adoption and use of vaccinations that have been proven to be effective in preventing unnecessary disease, APIAHF is also concerned about assuring that the vaccines are accessible to all and that immigrants are not unduly burdened. APIAHF acknowledges the potential benefit of the HPV vaccine in preventing cervical cancer, but also recognizes that specific concerns have been raised about the vaccine’s effectiveness. APIAHF is concerned about what appears to be inadequate involvement in and transparency about the process regarding decisions about additional vaccine requirements. We also are concerned about inadequate outreach, education, and dissemination of information to Asian American and Pacific Islander communities who are affected by the requirements.

Cervical cancer is a major concern to Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, particularly for specific ethnic subgroups. Screening remains the most effective way to prevent cervical cancer and immigrant communities have low rates. APIAHF supports increased funding for federal programs such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) which supports, among others, community driven programs to increase the rates of cervical cancer screening for Vietnamese women, who have five times the rate of cervical cancer as White women.

SAN FRANCISCO (10/5)- In a controversial move, Myrna V. Lim has accused the local  San Francisco Chronicle, of ignoring the Mission-Excelsior District.  In a press statement made by the candidate, Lim stated, “I have been receiving phone calls and emails from my supporters in District 11 expressing disappointment in your coverage of our Supervisor race”.  Furthermore, accusations of sexism and ethnic insensitivity were launched as she noted, “I am the only Asian and one of two women in a field of eight candidates, yet your reporter, Wyatt Buchanan, deliberately excluded me from his story. His insinuation that I had not garnered enough in contributions and endorsements to be considered by your paper is simply false, and casts great doubt about your journalistic objectivity and integrity for both my supporters and myself…  When I ran against incumbent Gerardo Sandoval in 2004, I garnered 42% of the votes. This year I am proud to be the leading candidate according to several polls.  My support reflects the multi-cultural diversity of District 11: 46% Filipino and Chinese, 25% Latino, 15% Caucasian, 8% African American”

The article stated that misperceptions of the district were perpetuated by the newspaper, stating, “Your articles featured four men who are City Hall political insiders, thereby manipulating public perception, creating the illusion that those were the only candidates worth considering.  I have raised more than $50,000 and attach a list of my supporters, so I should have been included even according to your stated standards.  I am not relying on the taxpayers to publicly finance my campaign…”

 Stating her biography, Lim said, “I am the only candidate who actually grew up in the district, and has served the district all my adult life.  My father, Rafael Lim, a former District Attorney in the Philippines, moved to the Excelsior in 1969, and worked as a janitor for two years in order to bring his family to America for a better life.  We bought our house in the District in 1976.  My family operated the old Granada Theatre and the old Apollo Theatre.  My brothers went to Balboa High School.  My family attends masses at the Epiphany, Corpus Christi and St. Emydius Churches.  My niece attends first grade at Epiphany School. One of my nieces graduated from the Leadership School on Seneca Street.  Most of my friends and supporters are natives of District 11, include Walter Franco who has been operating the Ricca Café on Mission Street and Onondaga Street for 40 years.  Some of my friends are retired teachers from Balboa High School”.

 Candidate Lim, who has attracted the endorsements of Major General Antonio Taguba, Abu Ghraib Report, Iraq; San Francisco Police Officers Association; National Women’s Political Caucus; and Filipino American Caucus, California Democratic Party said to the editorial staff of the newspaper, “Despite your editorials to the contrary, your blatant discrimination serves to perpetuate the status quo at City Hall, to the detriment of the good people in my district who deserve better…”