Other News In Brief

Waterworks Park Closed Due To Avian Flu Outbreak

Belfast City Council has announced the closure of the Waterworks Park in north Belfast due to an outbreak of avian flu.

The council has said that the park "has been temporarily closed until further notice" following the discovery and removal of 16 dead birds in recent days.

According to reports, Belfast City Council has brought in an independent expert to manage the situation at Waterworks Park.

Penultimate Assured Skills Collaborative Welding Academy Announced

Economy Minister Gordon Lyons has launched the penultimate Assured Skills Collaborative Welding Academy in a series of seven academies at South West College, with 12 training places.

As with the previous five Academies, this latest Assured Skills Collaborative Academy will see successful applicants receive industry-standard welding training, during a six-week course at South West College’s industrial training facility in Cookstown.

Announcing the opportunity, the Minister said: "The Mid Ulster area has a strong and resilient manufacturing and engineering sector which makes an important contribution to our economy. This collaborative approach between South West College and local engineering companies, underlines my determination to develop the skills that are needed in this area.
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"Assured Skills Academies position participants very favourably to kick-start a new career by providing them with the skills they need, through an industry-recognised qualification and no previous experience in welding is required – I urge anyone who is interested to apply."

Participants who complete the Academy are guaranteed an interview for a welding position at one of 18 companies in Dungannon and the surrounding area.

SDLP Calls For Renewed Focus On Tackling Animal Cruelty

The SDLP has called for a renewed focus on tackling animal cruelty after Sinn Féin and DUP MLA's voted down a Bill to ban fox hunting in NI.

SDLP Upper Bann MLA Dolores Kelly has been working with the UPSCA on an All Island Animal Cruelty Register, which would work to combat the breach of bans on owning or keeping animals and prevent people with convictions from getting a license to breed or sell animals.

It would also prevent people with relevant convictions working in animal care.

Mrs Kelly said: "Over 15 years on from the fox hunting ban in Britain it is inconceivable that this abhorrent practice is still allowed on both sides of the border. While Sinn Féin and the DUP have teamed up to end hopes of a ban on this occasion, this matter is far from over and is sure to return to the Assembly in the next mandate. Unlike Sinn Féin, the SDLP will live up to our commitments to the electorate and keep working to ban fox hunting and create an all-island animal cruelty register to protect the animals that contribute so much to our way of life."

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