Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Joel PenhorwoodThe trip to Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show by several Ohio dairy farmers, thanks to the efforts of Hill’s Supply, put on display not only the latest in robotic milking technology, but also the relationship between Canadian and American dairy farmers in what has been a contentious time with regard to trade.Ongoing North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) renegotiations have highlighted the differences between the two countries on milk production.“The dairy industry is challenging right now. As you look across Ohio and the nation, our nation’s dairy farmers are facing an economic downturn that’s rivaling the downturn that many of us remember in 2009,” said Frank Burkett III. Burkett, a dairy farmer and current president of the Ohio Farm Bureau, has signed a letter of intent on buying Hill’s Supply in the near future. “We look through Hill’s for ways to partner with dairymen to get through this cycle and move onto another cycle that hopefully delivers a little bit better economics and maybe a littler prosperity into dairy farmers.”Trade is an essential part of market prices in any agricultural commodity, milk included. Burkett was talking trade with many Canadian farmers.“Dairy and trade are a topic of conversation from the Farm Bureau perspective. Clearly as we look nationally, I would say there’s probably never been a time where there’s been more critical issues. Trade, the Farm Bill, immigration — there are a lot of big national issues that are impacting America’s farmers and ranchers,” Burkett said.A difference in the American and Canadian supply systems has been brought forth through NAFTA talks. Canada operates on what’s known as a supply management system where dairy farmers are given a quota of how much milk to produce. The end goal being an attempt to control the supply and protection against a surplus.Rick Shantz is an Ontario dairy farmer who said he and his fellow Canadians would like to see NAFTA completed and to allow both countries to move forward equitably.“We’re running 200 acres and 100 cows. It’s a fifth generation dairy farm. My son’s helping me now,” said Shantz. “I think a lot of it just comes down to supply and management. If we don’t have the demand there, why are we supplying it? So I think that’s the bottom line and that’s our system. That’s the box they have kept us in and we’ve been able to grow moderately. Sometimes you would like to grow a little faster, but the system has kept us at a slow growth. It has worked very well and has been sustainable. We have given up some price over the last couple of years.”“The box is a good thing. It’s here to stay. We in Ontario can compete, we can produce milk. The bottom line is we’re controlled.”The space in between for U.S. and Canada milk export and import is where the details of NAFTA are at a sticking point. Some in Canada have responded to the call for relaxation of certain protectionist dairy policies with agreement, while others have drawn the line. Time will tell what results of the matter.In the meantime, dairy farmers were busy looking at the latest in milking technology — Shantz included.“We started robotic milking eight years ago now. We love the new robot. It’s pretty exciting to see the movement of technology and the future looks very promising,” he said.The new DeLaval VMS V300 milking system was on active display, milking for the first time in North America. The system is a challenge to the Lely Astronaut which has been on several Ohio farms for a number of years. Hill’s Supply said they see the new robot as the next wave in efficiency for the robotic industry, with it boasting improved milking times and hookup efficiency.
Two days after his “kheer” comment triggered speculation about possible political realignments in Bihar, Union Minister of State for Human Resource Department and president of the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party Upendra Kushwaha on Monday made a U-turn and said he “neither sought milk from the RJD, not sugar from the BJP”. He said he never mentioned any political party in his comment, but spoke for all sections of society to “make Narendra Modi the Prime Minister of the country again in 2019”.Speaking at an event organised on the birth centenary of veteran socialist leader B.P. Mandal in Patna on Saturday, Mr. Kushwaha had said that “if milk from Yadavs and rice from Kushwahas are mixed well, kheer can be prepared”.Mr. Kushwaha’s comment was seen as a hint towards a possible alliance between Lalu Prasad’s RJD and the RLSP. Soon after the Union Minister’s remarks, RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav tweeted welcoming his “delicious and nutritious recipe”. Other senior RJD leaders hinted that Mr. Kushwaha would soon join the RJD as “everything has been finalised”. ‘General comment’However, on Monday, the RLSP leader denied any RJD link to his comment. “I have neither sought milk from the RJD, nor sugar from the BJP. I did not taken name of any party . I had talked about all sections of society… Where and how did the RJD come into the picture? Why are you [media] viewing a particular community as a particular party,” Mr. Kushwaha asked journalists. He also asserted that his party was making efforts to get votes from every section so as to help Mr. Modi become the PM for the second term in 2019 polls.Reacting to Mr. Kushwaha’s “U-trun”, Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) leader and an ally of the RJD-led Opposition, Jitan Ram Manjhi, said, “Mr. Kushwaha should not sail on two boats. If he wants to come with us he is most welcome, but if he wants to become the Chief Minister, then I have to say that our CM candidate is Tejashwi Yadav.” Mr. Kushwaha, of late, has been putting pressure on the NDA to finalise seat sharing for the Lok Sabha polls and has embarrassed Nitish Kumar-led NDA government in Bihar with his critical remarks. The ruling NDA partners — JD(U) and BJP — tried to downplay Mr. Kushwaha’s “kheer” comment. “What Kushwahaji has said seems like a proverb. Rice, milk and sugar belong to everyone in the country. One should not read anything more into it as he [Kushwaha] has already taken a resolve to make Narendra Modi the PM again in 2019,” said State BJP chief Nityanand Rai.JD(U) spokesperson and MLC Niraj Kumar said, “It seems more of a proverb than anything else. Upendra Kushwaha had played an important role in uprooting the ‘jungle raj’ from Bihar and he is very much with the NDA.”
We love the way you look in Cardinals red, but the @ProFootballHOF gold jacket suits you well, @Kurt13Warner!Congrats!(🎥 @nflnetwork) pic.twitter.com/EaRtZwhtsc— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) August 5, 2017Former Arizona Cardinals quarterback and Ring of Honor member Kurt Warner received his gold jacket Friday before his Pro Football Hall of Fame induction Saturday.Warner made his entrance at the Gold Jacket Ceremony greeting several current Hall of Famers and joking with them along the way. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling .@Kurt13Warner makes his entrance at the @ProFootballHOF Gold Jacket Ceremony!Coverage on @NFLNetwork pic.twitter.com/Es10ZRPrHj— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) August 5, 2017One of those was former Cardinal Aeneas Williams. So excited for my teammate & brother Kurt W. congrats bro! Gold Jacket is Next! pic.twitter.com/DvDhcZ1G5C— Aeneas Williams (@aeneas35) August 5, 2017The lead-up to Warner receiving the jacket included a video package on his career. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Top Stories You made it to Canton!Congrats to our @kurt13warner! 👏👏👏#PFHOF17 pic.twitter.com/k388xI9uB9— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) August 5, 2017Warner was emotional afterward, struggling to process the moment.“I’m still trying to figure it all out,” Warner said of receiving the jacket. “When you watch these guys lined up, guys who I watched play, guys who I tried to emulate, guys that I played with and understand their greatness, I’m not sure how I fit into that mix yet.”Warner said he isn’t sure if he will wear the jacket much, but like his Super Bowl ring that he also doesn’t wear much, he will admire it and reflect on the journey he had with his teammates. 2 Comments Share The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires
Bill unanimously approved by House committeeThe Michigan House Families, Children, and Seniors Committee today approved legislation authored by state Rep. Sue Allor to expand state payment to health care providers for sexual assault exams. “After sexual assault, a medical exam can check for injuries, even those you may not be able to see,” said Allor of Wolverine. “With medical attention and testing, costs shouldn’t keep victims from getting the care they need.”The cost of providing these services to victims of sexual assaults has increased and many health care providers have become financially constrained because of the costs. To ensure these services are continued, Allor said the state must provide additional funding to health care providers.Every 98 seconds, a person experiences sexual assault in the United States. Sexual assault affects hundreds of thousands of Americans each year. One out of every six American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime and 3 percent of men are victims of attempted or completed rape in their lifetime.The Crime Victims Compensation Board provides reimbursement expenses to innocent crime victims who suffer personal injury. Michigan became the 17th state to offer this program.House Bill 4506 moves to the full House for consideration.### Categories: Allor News 08Jun Rep. Allor bill helps pay for sexual assault examinations
Cloud IP video transport technology specialist Dejero has teamed up with Intelsat for the launch of a new blended cellular and Ku-band IP technology for live television coverage from remote locations.Dejero CellSat uses Dejero’s network blending technology to combine cellular connectivity from multiple mobile network carriers with Ku-band IP connectivity provided by Intelsat.The technology gives CellSat users the required bandwidth and confidence to deliver live video from remote locations, according to Dejero. If the bandwidth available from cellular connections dips due to network congestion or other factors, CellSat automatically blends in Ku-band IP satellite connectivity to boost bandwidth to the requested level for the live shot, according to the company.The Dejero CellSat solution communicates with the satellite terminal auto-acquire system to simplify the satellite connection process. CellSat software dynamically allocates satellite bandwidth required for transmissions.The Dejero CellSat solution includes pre-certified encoding and receiving equipment, network blending software, connectivity services to the CellSat network, cloud management, and 24/7 technical support. Most satellite vehicles with existing Ka-band or Ku-band satellite equipment can be upgraded for compatibility with Dejero CellSat, according to the company.“Today’s broadcasters are challenged with quickly producing high-quality, reliable television coverage in environments that run the gamut from sparsely populated in extremely remote areas to overcrowded with a congested network,” said Rob Cerbone, Intelsat’s vice-president and general manager of media services.“Coupling Intelsat’s high performing, ubiquitous Ku-band IP connectivity with Dejero’s blended cellular technology will give broadcasters greater assurance when covering live events. Dejero CellSat was designed with simplicity in mind so crews can focus on setting up quickly and getting the live shot back to the broadcast facility and on the air.”
US regional telecom and cable operator TDS Telecom has chosen TiVo’s latest platform to deliver TV services to its customers as part of a plan to migrate away from legacy QAM and Mediaroom services to a single TiVo-powered IP video platform.TDS Telecom will roll out its new TiVo-powered video services to new and existing TV subscribers in both cable operations and wireline service areas.TiVo said its platform will allow TDS to deliver hyper-personalisation, advanced search and recommendations, voice control, seamless discovery across linear, over-the-top, on-demand and cloud-DVR platforms, with superior multiscreen capabilities via a cloud-based, device-agnostic service.TDS’s video service will IP VOD, IP linear, start-over/catch-up and network DVR. TiVo’s will be deployed across a range of clients including managed Android TV set-tops and unmanaged consumer-owned streamer devices such as Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, as well as iOS and Android mobile devices.“We really believe that this platform is the ideal product offering to bridge the gap between the traditional linear pay TV experience and the drastically changing trends in video consumption. It is built to adhere to all of those customer segments and demands,” said Julie Maiers, vice-president of marketing and product development and Pat Ferguson, video product management for TDS Telecom.The pair cited “the rich metadata and recommendations engine, conversational voice search and pure aggregation of OTT content into a stellar user interface and experience” as advantages brought by TiVo.In its cable network areas, TDS will use the TiVo deployment as part of a plan to migrate all its services to IP “eventually”, which Maiers and Ferguson said would “help immensely as we continue to introduce higher DOCSIS speeds to the home in cable”.Maiers and Ferguson said that TDS plans to will cap sales of its legacy QAM video products and push all new customer growth toward the TiVo IPTV product, when the new service is launched in cable markets.In wireline markets, TDS will cap sales of its current Mediaroom IPTV product and move exclusively to TiVo’s for new customer additions.“The plan is to maintain our ‘legacy’ customer base and products associated, opportunistically migrating customers to the new platform as it makes sense. There may be areas where that migration takes flight sooner than others, but that strategy is still being ironed out,” the pair told DTVE.Maiers and Ferguson said that the company will deploy a managed Android TV set-top as part of this effort, along with delivering TV to a range of customer-owned devices for in-home streaming options.“TiVo’s next-gen platform will power a consistent, unified experience across TDS’s base, including across a host of clients including managed Android TV STBs and unmanaged consumer-owned streamer devices such as Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, as well as iOS and Android mobile devices,” said Michael Hawkey, SVP and general manager for TiVo.TDS currently offers TV via a mix of technologies over cable, including legacy QAM video on digital-to-analogue converters, iGuide and Passport, together with Espial Elevate for its premium offering. About 27% of its wireline IPTV base is currently enabled for Mediaroom.TDS is the seventh largest local exchange telephone company in the US with 1.2 million connections to high-speed internet, phone, and TV services.
Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Jul 11 2019Atypical eating behaviors may be a sign a child should be screened for autism, according to a new study from Penn State College of Medicine.Research by Susan Mayes, professor of psychiatry, found that atypical eating behaviors were present in 70 percent of children with autism, which is 15 times more common than in neurotypical children.Atypical eating behaviors may include severely limited food preferences, hypersensitivity to food textures or temperatures, and pocketing food without swallowing.According to Mayes, these behaviors are present in many one-year-olds with autism and could signal to doctors and parents that a child may have autism.”If a primary care provider hears about these behaviors from parents, they should consider referring the child for an autism screening.”Mayes stated that the earlier autism is diagnosed, the sooner the child can begin treatment with a behavior analyst. Previous studies have shown applied behavior analysis to be most effective if implemented during the preschool years. Behavior analysts use a number of interventions, including rewards, to make positive changes in the children’s behavior and teach a range of needed skills.Keith Williams, director of the Feeding Program at Penn State Children’s Hospital, uses this therapy to help a variety of individuals with unusual eating behaviors. He said that identifying and correcting these behaviors can help ensure children are eating a proper diet.”I once treated a child who ate nothing but bacon and drank only iced tea,” Williams said. “Unusual diets like these don’t sustain children.”Williams also noted that there is a distinct difference between worrisome eating behaviors and the typical picky eating habits of young children. He explained that most children without special needs will slowly add foods to their diets during the course of development, but children with autism spectrum disorders, without intervention, will often remain selective eaters. We see children who continue to eat baby food or who won’t try different textures. We even see children who fail to transition from bottle feeding.”Keith Williams, director of the Feeding Program, Penn State Children’s Hospital Related StoriesEyes hold clues to effective treatment of severe autism, study showsBullying in children with ASD gets worse with ageStudy offers new clues to autism’s underlying biologyMayes said that many children with autism eat a narrow diet consisting primarily of grain products, like pasta and bread, and chicken nuggets. She said that because children with autism have sensory hypersensitivities and dislike change, they may not want to try new foods and will be sensitive to certain textures. They often eat only foods of a particular brand, color or shape.The research also showed that most children with autism who had atypical eating behaviors had two or more types – almost a quarter had three or more. Yet, none of the children with other developmental disorders who did not have autism had three or more. According to Williams, this is a common, clinical phenomenon – and it has prompted him and his colleagues to recommend some children for further evaluation.”When we evaluate young children with multiple eating problems, we start to wonder if these children might also have the diagnosis of autism,” Williams said. “In many cases, they eventually do receive this diagnosis.”The researchers evaluated the eating behaviors described in parent interviews of more than 2000 children from two studies. They investigated the difference in the frequency of unusual eating behaviors between typical children and those with autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and other disorders.Williams says the study data show that atypical eating behaviors may help diagnostically distinguish autism from other disorders. Even though children from both groups have unusual eating habits, they are seven times more common in autism than in other disorders according to the study data.”This study provided further evidence that these unusual feeding behaviors are the rule and not the exception for children with autism,” Williams said. Source:Penn State College of MedicineJournal reference:Mayes, S.D. & Zickgraf, H. (2019) Atypical eating behaviors in children and adolescents with autism, ADHD, other disorders, and typical development. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders. doi.org/10.1016/j.rasd.2019.04.002.
Swiss pharmaceuticals giant Novartis said Wednesday that strong sales of two of its main blockbuster drugs enabled it to turn in a “good operational performance” in 2017. Novartis said it had ‘a good year’ in 2017 © 2018 AFP This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Novartis says profit up 15% in 2017 (2018, January 24) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-01-novartis-profit.html Novartis said in a statement that net profit climbed by 15 percent to $7.7 billion in 2017 on a one-percent increase in sales to $49.1 billion. “Novartis had a good year in 2017,” said chief executive Joe Jimenez. The group’s psoriasis drug, Cosentyx, “reached multi-blockbuster status,” the heart treatment Entresto delivered more than $500 million in sales and the eye care unit Alcon “returned to growth,” the statement said.Underlying or operating profit of $12.9 billion was “broadly in line with prior year as sales growth and productivity fully offset generic erosion and growth investments,” Novartis said.Looking ahead, “barring unforeseen events, group net sales in 2018 are expected to grow low to mid single digit,” Novartis said.And underlying profit was expected “to grow mid to high single digit,” it added.”With several key launches on the horizon and our new operating model in place, Novartis is poised for sustainable growth,” said CEO Jimenez. Novartis sees bright future for eye unit Explore further
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. “We are allowed to go (to the bathroom),” said one worker, “but you can’t stay for that long.” Four or five minutes is OK—six minutes tops.”Anyway, he said, if you spend too long, “the numbers start to bite you,” meaning the rate of tasks per hour by which workers are measured, will drop unacceptably.Sheheryar Kaoosji, co-executive director of the Warehouse Worker Resource Center, a nonprofit in Southern California that advocates for better working conditions, said all warehouse employers try to get workers to do their jobs as quickly as possible. But because of the way Amazon uses technology, he said, “it’s definitely a whole other level.”Tracking every moveBloodworth said he spent several weeks at Amazon in early 2016 working the requisite 10-hour shifts, four days a week, at a warehouse in the West Midlands countryside. Seeking to write about the plight of the working class, he also worked at a call center, as an Uber driver, on a building site and as a home aide caring for the elderly.”Amazon was the worst employer, easily,” the author said by phone.When he took a day off sick, he received a “point.” Earn six and you’re fired, he said.Bloodworth said he heard of one person getting a point because she had to leave early to see her child in the hospital, and he talked to another who got a point for failing to hit her rate.At the warehouse where he worked, Amazon monitored everbody’s rate through a handheld device—tracking “our every move as if we were convicts out on house arrest,” he writes.The device carried messages to workers and recorded how quickly they were picking or packing goods. “Your rates are down this hour, please speed up,” a message might say, according to Bloodworth.”The productivity target was astonishingly high,” Bloodworth said, and it was always going up. To try to meet it, you had to run around the warehouse—at least if you were an “order picker,” as he was, tasked with collecting items from shelves to be sent on for packaging.Yet, he said, you were not supposed to run, and could get a point for doing so.”You couldn’t not break the rules,” he said, especially if you were angling for a permanent position. Most of the workers he met were, like him, temporary.Adding to the oppressive atmosphere, in Bloodworth’s telling: Amazon’s security measures to prevent theft, which entailed having workers go through airport-style metal detectors.The author summed up his experience: “You were not seen as a human being. You were seen as a robot.”How accurate is Bloodworth’s description?Amazon contests the number of shifts he worked—10, according to a spokesperson. Bloodworth initially said 15, then took account of a half-day plus two days he missed for sickness and warehouse maintenance, and recalculated to 12 and a half.More substantatively, the company said it employs mostly permanent workers, not temporary (outside of the Christmas season, at least), and has bathrooms “just a short walk” from where staffers work.”We do not monitor toilet breaks,” the spokesperson said in a series of lengthy written responses.One Amazon statement defended the company’s sick-leave policies. “If someone is ill, we want to help them get back to work when they are fit to do so. We completely support our people, and use proper discretion when applying our absence policy.”The statement did not say what its absence policy is.In North America, the company spokesperson said when asked for specificity, the policy “varies from state to state, but we comply with all regulations.”Also, according to the spokesperson, Amazon gives warehouse workers 20 hours unpaid time off every three months (adding to 10 hours when they start), 48 hours of paid personal time per year, and one week of paid vacation in the first year.Regarding the targets that Bloodworth says bedevil and exhaust employees, the spokesperson wrote, “As with nearly all companies, we expect a certain level of performance from our associates and we continue to set productivity targets objectively, based on previous performance levels achieved by our workforce … We support people who are not performing to the levels expected with dedicated coaching to help them improve.”Bloodworth said he was chastised, not coached, when his numbers were down.Back in the U.S.A tour of Amazon’s Kent warehouse—a squat 850,000-square-foot building that runs on for several blocks in a sparsely populated part of the city—doesn’t settle every contradiction.But one thing is immediately familiar from Bloodworth’s book: airport-style metal detectors. A sign tells workers what they can’t bring in, including phones, keys and belts.Cedric Ross, an Amazon senior manager giving the tour alongside Amazon PR manager Melanie Etches, explained the security measures as “industry standard.”Kaoosji, of the Warehouse Worker Resource Center, said that’s not true in his experience, based on conversations with warehouse workers from local employers such as Walmart and Home Deport.Amazon’s warehouses do have distinctive features the company likes to show off. Just beyond the entrance in Kent, Ross and Etches point out a classroom that is part of its Career Choice program, where workers can take free vocational classes of all sorts.And on an upper floor is a marvel of technological prowess: an area where big, rectangular storage units seem to move by themselves in some futuristic dance. In fact, small robots lie beneath the units, controlled by Wi-Fi and turning their cargo around as directed. Twenty-five of its warehouses in North America use such robots.Of course, humans work at the Kent warehouse, too, 2,500 of them. Technology dictates their work in a different way. Computer screens are ubiquitous, giving workers information about their tasks and running updates on their rate per hour.A game, as Etches described it, was taking place on a screen in front of one worker, who was picking items from storage units and placing them in bins for later packaging. Each task she finished counted for a certain number of points, and her total was ranked along with those of other workers.”Is it fun?” Etches asked brightly.The worker hesitated slightly. “It’s OK. It’s fun,” she said.A floor below, a woman packaging orders also used the word “OK” to describe her job.”If you’re having a bad day, it’s really hard to make rates,” she said. “Or if you’re sick, like I am today.”Asked why she didn’t stay home, she said, “If you don’t have time to take a full day off, you don’t leave.” And if you do, she said, you will be fired.Would that happen right away or would you first have a conversation with a manager? Etches asked.”I think you get an email,” the woman said.She also said workers were held accountable to something Amazon calls “time off task.””We’ve been told to watch how much time you’re in the bathroom,” she said, echoing the worker who said six minutes was the limit.”I think what she was talking about,” Etches said walking away, is that if people are in the bathroom “for an unusual amount of time,” someone might ask: “Are you OK? Everything all right?”Amazon offers prizes to those who perform well. There are “power hours” when workers compete for “swag bucks” by picking up the pace. Winners exchange the bucks for Amazon T-shirts, caps and other items.To be sure, not all workers find the rates oppressive. One said she had no problem meeting them. Another, who worked as a “problem solver” fixing orders that had gone wrong, didn’t have any rates to meet and had quickly been promoted.”It’s the best job I’ve ever had,” said the 29-year-old problem solver, who previously worked at a Pizza Hut and as a part-time maintenance worker for a South King County city.Kaoosji gives Amazon credit for offering better pay and benefits than some warehouse employers. Providing any health care at all, he said, is rare.”Workers tell us that’s what makes you stay,” he said.He estimates he and his colleagues at the Warehouse Worker Resource Center have talked to about 50 Amazon workers in the last year, and have also heard stories of unattainable rates and surveillance even of time spent in the bathroom.Such conditions figured prominently in a survey of 240 Amazon warehouse workers carried out by the British advocacy group Organise. Seventy-four percent said they avoided using the bathroom for fear of missing their performance targets or receiving a warning point.It’s that kind of stress that makes some workers leave despite the relatively good pay and benefits, Kaoosji said.Generally, he added, nondisclosure agreements required by Amazon, another unusual feature of its warehouses, keep workers afraid of speaking publicly about their experiences.Bloodworth doesn’t have that problem. Eventually, someone from the company found him in the warehouse and presented him with such an agreement, he writes. “On insisting it was something I needed to sign I decided straightaway to hand my notice in.” Explore further Amazon workers in Spain deliver first strike ©2018 The Seattle Times Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC. Working at an Amazon warehouse in the U.K., James Bloodworth came across a bottle of straw-colored liquid on a shelf. It looked like pee. Citation: Under pressure, afraid to take bathroom breaks? Inside Amazon’s fast-paced warehouse world (2018, July 4) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-07-pressure-bathroom-amazon-fast-paced-warehouse.html How could he be sure? “I smelt it,” said the 35-year-old British journalist and author, talking about his new book “Hired: Six Months Undercover in Low-Wage Britain.” It was definitely pee, he said.As he tells it, urinating into a bottle is the kind of desperation Amazon forces its warehouse workers into as they try to avoid accusations of “idling” and failing to meet impossibly high productivity targets—ones they are continually measured against by Big Brother-ish type surveillance.It didn’t help that the nearest bathroom to where he worked was four flights of stairs below.Bloodworth’s grim picture of Amazon’s blue-collar workplaces—he compares the warehouse he worked in, alternately, to a prison and a totalitarian state—is bringing new attention to the company’s treatment of its workers. Out in the U.K. since March, and just appearing in this country, “Hired” sparked a flurry of reviews in the British press and some American coverage as well.Adding to concerns that have festered for years, Bloodworth’s depiction arises as the company rapidly expands its warehouse operation, where workers store, pack and ship the items customers order online. Amazon last year said it employed 125,000 full-time workers in the U.S., 38 percent more than a year ago.The company has not released worldwide employment figures, but said it has 175 “fulfillment centers,” as it calls its massive warehouses where goods come in and out, and 35 smaller “sortation centers” that finish off the delivery process.”We don’t recognize these allegations as an accurate portrayal of activities in our buildings,” the company said in a statement about Bloodworth’s book.The statement touted Amazon’s above-minimum-wage warehouse pay ($11 after two years in the U.K. and an average $15 in the U.S.) and benefits, including stock options for permanent employees.”We are committed to treating every one of our associates (the term Amazon uses for its warehouse workers) with dignity and respect,” Amazon added.There were, however, echoes of Bloodworth’s book even on a warehouse tour in Kent with an Amazon PR manager looking on.
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Telecoms gear maker Nokia reported Thursday a surprise first-quarter loss amid tougher competition for the new, superfast wireless 5G networks that are expected to increase in business this year. Nokia Q4 profit up as operators switching to 5G networks Explore further Citation: Nokia sees tough competition in market for 5G networks (2019, April 25) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-04-nokia-loss-tough-competition-networks.html The company, based in Espoo, Finland, said its net loss for the January-March period was 116 million euros ($130 million), against profit of 83 million euros a year earlier. Sales rose 2% to 5 billion euros.CEO Rajeev Suri said revenues from the faster but more expensive 5G networks were expected to “grow sharply” in the second half of the year.He said the slow start to the year was caused by aggressive competition in the network industry – dominated by Nokia, Sweden’s Ericsson and China’s Huawei – in the early stages of 5G rollout. Companies are under pressure to offer low prices to secure 5G network deals.That, Suri said, had created “near-term pressure but longer-term opportunity.”Industry observers say Nokia and Ericsson are trying to make gains on the woes of Huawei, which is facing obstacles in many countries over concerns – mainly voiced by the U.S. – that its equipment may be used for China-sponsored state espionage.In the latest development, Britain’s digital minister said Thursday that London is still mulling over whether to allow Huawei to supply parts for the U.K.’s new 5G wireless network.There is a risk, experts say, that Nokia and Ericsson could push too hard to capitalize on Huawei’s troubles by engaging in a price war, eroding profits.”The 5G (market) is in its early stages, the ecosystem is not yet mature and Nokia is facing some new challenges of its own,” Suri told analysts and reporters in a conference call.”But overall we see things improving quickly and surely. We have a (product) portfolio that is unique for the 5G era. Still, there’s plenty of work to do in all (business) areas but the momentum is with us,” he said.Shares in Nokia were down over 9% in Helsinki. © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.