23/06/2016

Other News In Brief

Woman Convicted Of Benefit Fraud

A woman has been convicted for claiming benefits she was not entitled to at Belfast Crown Court.

Patricia McGreevy claimed Housing Benefit and rates totalling £6,783 while failing to declare capital. She was given a three month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months.

She is also required to repay any outstanding money wrongfully obtained to the Department for Communities.

Keep Bonfires A Safe Distance From Overhead Power Lines - NI Networks

A warning has been issued to communities across Northern Ireland to keep bonfires a safe distance from overhead power lines and substations.

NI Networks said the smoke from bonfires can cause electrical arcing and sparking which could cause high voltage electricity lines to fall down.

A spokesperson from NIE Networks said: "Bonfire debris and flames anywhere near power lines and electricity substations are a serious risk to everyone's safety and wellbeing.

"Bonfires also need to be kept clear of hidden hazards, such as trees which might have electricity lines running close to them. Electricity can jump gaps so you don't need to come into direct contact with live equipment to risk electrocution. The electricity network is safe when left alone but can be potentially lethal if you get too close.
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"We are working with the local communities and elected representatives to highlight the dangers and would urge everyone to put safety first this summer."

EA Has 'No Idea' How Many Teachers Hold Up-To-Date Autism Awareness Training – Alliance

The Alliance Party has hit out at the Education Authority (EA) after it revealed it has no idea how many of its teachers hold up-to-date autism awareness training.

Kellie Armstrong MLA said the situation is "extremely worrying".

She said: "I'm completed shocked to learn training records are not being held and ongoing professional training is not being monitoring on something so important as Autism.

"Given this slack attitude I fail to understand how the Education Authority and the Middletown Centre for Autism can confidently say it is working effectively to meet the needs of children with autism.

"Not only does it mean that a recognised standard of training for teachers is not being checked and updated, but that training standards are not being maintained and yet again a disservice is being done to children and families with autism.

"With the number of cases of children with autism on the increase, simply sitting back and letting things tick along as they are is simply not good enough.

"The Education Authority and the Department of Education must show how serious they are about this issue and rectify this situation immediately."

(CD/JP)

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