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Twelve beautiful flight routes where you absolutely want a window seat

I’m an aisle guy, personally. I don’t like having to push past people or force them to stand up every time I feel like stretching my legs. I’d rather be the guy that other people are pushing past.
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Still, there are instances when the window seat on a plane is definitely the better option. There are certain commercial flights that are so scenically spectacular, so beautifully photo-worthy, that to request any other seat would be an absolute crime. These are just normal flights that happen to fly over very beautiful places.

If you’re flying on any of the following routes, you’re in luck: the sightseeing on your holiday begins the moment the wheels leave the tarmac. Just make sure you’ve got a window seat, and a camera. NZ613 – Auckland to Queenstown (Air New Zealand)

This two-hour journey takes in almost everything that makes New Zealand so beautiful. You begin with the rolling green hills of the North Island, cross the Cook Strait, and all of a sudden you’re following the snow-capped peaks and glacier-riven valleys of the Alps across to Lake Tekapo, and then south to Queenstown for one of the most spectacular airport approaches – above lakes and rivers hemmed in by jagged peaks – that you’re ever likely to witness. UA2093 – Dallas-Fort Worth to San Francisco (United Airlines)

This has to be the most scenic route in the US, a four-hour journey that begins with the urban sprawl of Dallas, before ascending over the barren Texas panhandle and eventually hitting the Rocky Mountains around Utah. And soon after that, you discover the true scenic highlight of the flight: Yosemite National Park. Even the approach into SFO, with glimpses of the bay and Golden Gate Bridge, is spectacular. NF240 – Port Vila to Tanna Island (Air Vanuatu)

The views from any island-hopping flight are going to be spectacular, and this is one of the best. Departing the Vanuatu capital, Port Vila, you head out over Mele Bay, before making a left turn and setting course over wide blue ocean for Tanna, a volcanic island plopped in the middle of the Pacific. The views of the volcano as you approach the airport at White Grass are truly memorable. AC8889 – Vancouver to Whitehorse (Air Canada)

There are actual, dedicated scenic flights that have nothing on this amazing journey, which tracks the jagged peaks of the Rocky Mountains as they unfurl to the north of British Columbia and on into the Yukon. Around Vancouver it’s all lush forests and sparkling water, but pretty soon that view turns to white peaks and glaciers as you hit the spectacular high country. CX257 – Hong Kong to London Heathrow (Cathay Pacific)

Hong Kong is a great place to take off from, and London Heathrow can be an amazing airport to land at, given the sheer amount of traffic you’re sharing the sky with. However, the highlight of this journey is in the middle: the vast tracts of the Gobi Desert above China; the plains of the Mongolian Steppe; the icy wilderness of Siberia. It’s even better than watching Miss Congeniality for the fifth time. LA2081 – Lima to Puerto Maldonado (LATAM)

Peru is a country of amazing natural diversity, and you get the perfect snapshot of it all while flying from Lima to Puerto Maldonado. Once the sprawl of the capital disappears from over the wingtip, you’re into the foothills of the Andes, which quickly become the spectacular mountain range that’s the home of Machu Picchu. Eventually you pop over to the other side, where the lushness of the Amazon rainforest awaits. CX785 – Hong Kong to Denpasar (Cathay Pacific)

While there’s nothing much of interest for the first half of this flight, as it heads out over the South China Sea, things get really interesting once you hit Borneo. CX785 crosses land at Sabah, skirting spectacular Mt Kinabalu, before taking in a good few hours of the volcanic ranges, dense jungles and thick, sluggish rivers of Kalimantan. QF63 – Sydney to Johannesburg (Qantas)

If you can’t afford to take a dedicated scenic flight to Antarctica, there’s good news: the shortest route between Sydney and Johannesburg is to fly south, which means QF63 regularly brushes the edge of the great white continent at the base of the globe. To ensure the best views of icebergs and tundra, make sure you’re seated on the port, or left-hand side, of the plane, and hope for good weather. M8 – Male to South Ari Atoll, Maldives (Trans Maldivian Airways)

You could easily sell this seaplane transfer from the Maldivian capital of Male to the stunningly tropical South Ari Atoll, home to several upscale resorts, as a scenic flight alone. The views are as you would expect: flawlessly clear water dotted with coral reef and sandy cays, worthy of a good hundred or so photos. H21 – Santiago to Punta Arenas (Sky Airline)

How beautiful is Patagonia? You’ll know full well after taking the Sky Airline flight from Santiago, the Chilean capital, all the way down to Punta Arenas in the country’s far south. The flight path follows the Andes Mountains from the stunning Lakes District, down through rugged northern Patagonia, and into the amazing fjord land of the south. U24826 – Zurich to Naples (easyJet)

Obviously, Switzerland is going to be beautiful. This is one of the most visually stunning countries on the planet – you really can’t go wrong for the first half of your journey. Then, however, you’re into Italy, which is probably not that exciting once you’ve left the Dolomites behind; that is, until you begin the descent into Naples, with views of Pompeii, Mt Vesuvius, the Isle of Capri, the Amalfi Coast and more visible for the lucky few. VW537 – Mexico City to Puerto Escondido (Aeromar)

First, Mexico City. You can’t truly appreciate how mind-bogglingly large this city is until you’re flying above it, watching as it stretches on, and on, and on into the distance. Once you’ve cleared the DF’s urban sprawl, however, you’ll cross the Sierra Madre del Sur, the spectacular highlands of Oaxaca, spying winding mountain roads and small villages, before descending to beautiful, coastal Puerto Escondido.

What is the most scenic commercial flight you’ve ever taken? What about the visually dullest?

Email: [email protected]苏州夜总会招聘.au

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???See also: Mind the drop off: The world’s 10 scariest airports for take-offs and landings

See also: Qantas jumbo jet takes off for Antarctica



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The best of both worlds at luxury Wamboin property

A luxurious n colonial-style home and an entertainers’ dream, this Wamboin property is sure to astound.
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Nestled in a small community roughly 30 kilometres from the centre of Canberra, this residence feels like an escape from reality but not too far from the pleasures of urban life.

One step inside 1311 Norton Road, is a bit like walking into a wondrous maze – you don’t know where you will end up but the promised destination is sure to be something magical.

You’re first greeted by the formal dining and lounge connecting to a large gaming room with a billiard table and timber bar. You can just imagine the joyful late nights these walls have seen spent entertaining guests with a drink or two in hand.

As you continue up the corridor, beyond it’s generous five bedrooms, you are met with a more casual family and meals area, where charming timber fittings adorn the space and contrast beautifully with the blue tiling in the kitchen.

Journey through the character home and you’ll soon reach the glorious indoor pool with its own kitchenette and change room. It is the pinnacle of the home, the jewel of the crown, offering endless reward all year round.

Outside the main house lies a detached private cottage. Perfect for guests or a sanctuary retreat from the house, it boasts an en suite bedroom, convenient kitchenette and library.

Built in 1995, the approximately 600-square-metre home is set on 10 acres of impeccable grounds with meticulously maintained gardens adding immense personality to this rural estate.

Reflecting on the place he has called home for the past seven-and-a-half years, seller Tony Garrett says what he’s loved most about the home is its location.

“It’s the best of both worlds being able to live in the country with such close proximity to the city,” he says.

When they purchased the property, Tony and his wife, Melissa, focused their energy and green thumb on the garden.

“The grounds were a blank canvas for us, and in that time we have worked to make a truly beautiful outlook,” he says.

Belle Property selling agent Ryan Broadhurst believes the property is a relaxed socialites’ dream.

“It’s a perfect lifestyle property, you’ve got post rail fencing surrounding the 10 acres and a large home with separate accommodation, which is ideal for when family visits,” he says.

“It’s great for entertaining and if people are interested they can have horses, cattle or sheep,” adds Tony.

Despite the rural setting, there is a communal atmosphere within Wamboin.

“Wamboin is a really good community, they do monthly newsletters and always have events at the Wamboin Community Hall. ” says Broadhurst.

Indeed, the Wamboin Community Hall is the hub of activity for the approximate 1700 residents. Shops and cafes are limited but the beautiful rolling hills of the area definitely make up for this. And if you fancy yourself a wine sommelier, cool climate winery, Contentious Character, is the suburb’s hidden gem where you can enjoy a delectable drop alongside woodfired pizza.

Wamboin is ideal for families and those seeking a rural escape with the creature comforts of the city.

1311 Norton Road, Wamboin

Auction: Saturday, December 16, 2pm

Price guide: $1.7 million +

Agents: Ryan Broadhurst and Shane Zwajgenberg, Belle Property Kingston, 0417 513 896 & 0419 698 899



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Can Raelene fix the crumbling Rugby China Castle?

If Raelene Castle thought the Canterbury Bulldogs board, supporters and coach were tough, just wait until she starts her Rugby tenure in January.
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How does Des Hasler stack up against Michael Cheika, or the Bulldogs board room power struggles against the deeply divided political beast that is rugby?

Here are the ticking time bombs Castle will have to defuse when she replaces outgoing RA boss Bill Pulver.

CAN CASTLE REPAIR THE 2017 DISASTER?

n rugby copped an absolute battering this year, highlighted by the ugly drama that led to the Western Force being axed from Super Rugby.

Fans were fed up with the off-field drama and turned their backs on the game, compounded by the fact ‘s Super Rugby franchises failed miserably on the field.

Television numbers, crowd attendances and overall engagement all hit rock bottom. n teams lost all 26 trans-Tasman matches this year to rub salt into the wounds.

Winning games will help Castle’s transition, but her mission will be mending the broken bridges.

Rugby supporters need a clear vision to grow the game at a grassroots level, invest in female growth and to chase Wallabies success. They need something to be excited about.

The second part will be turning billionaire Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest from enemy to ally after RA went to war with the mining magnate over the Force’s future.

Ambitious: Andrew Forrest has a heart to heart with Force skipper Matt Hodsgon. Photo: Stuart Walmsley/RUGBY苏州夜总会招聘.au

Castle starts with no blood on her hands and a chance to build a positive relationship with Forrest, who could be a massive asset to the future of the game if his new Indo Pacific Rugby Championship is handled with care.

IS IT TIME TO REPLACE SUPER RUGBY WITH A TRANS-TASMAN COMPETITION?

The Force are gone and Super Rugby is back to 15 teams, but do people even care?

Super Rugby has become irrelevant in . The flow-on effect hurts the Wallabies, especially when they’re not winning.

is locked into the Super Rugby format until the end of the broadcast deal in 2020, but planning beyond that should start now.

There’s a strong belief a trans-Tasman model is the way of the future. New Zealand is reluctant to pursue it, but desperately needs it. Castle might be the perfect person to convince the Kiwis it’s time to breakaway from South Africa.

WHAT ABOUT WORKING WITH MICHAEL CHEIKA?

Michael Cheika or Des Hasler – who would you want to work with if you were the chief executive of a sporting organisation?

Both Cheika and Hasler are very unique and intent on doing things their own way. So in a way, Castle’s four years with Hasler have been the the perfect preparation to work with Wallabies coach Cheika.

The Wallabies are at a very interesting crossroads. They had an average year on the field that finished with a debacle against Scotland.

Wallabies coach Michael Cheika. Photo: AP

Cheika has blooded plenty of new players to start building a team for the World Cup in 2019, but n rugby cannot afford mediocre Test results.

Cheika and Castle will have to work together, but ultimately Castle has to be the boss.

THE GRASSROOTS OLIVE BRANCH

You only had to see the almost 16,000-strong crowd at the Shute Shield grand final to know n rugby has a pulse.

The problem is grassroots rugby feels completely disconnected from Super Rugby and the Wallabies.

The private-school stigma has hindered rugby’s growth, but RA released figures on Tuesday to say participation numbers of six-12-year-olds had jumped by 112 per cent in the past two years.

Funding has been a major bugbear for years and grassroots clubs feel they aren’t getting a fair share of the pie. RA said it cut the Force for financial reasons, and the savings generated by one less team are supposedly to be injected into grass roots.

Castle will need to find a way to satisfy the heartbeat of the game at an amateur level while also funding the professional model to be successful against the best teams in the world.

The last broadcast deal was supposed to prop up ‘s Super Rugby teams, but just one is expected to record a profit this year.

CAN A KIWI SAVE AUSTRALIAN RUGBY?

Castle hopes to succeed where Robbie Deans tried to break new ground. She has spent the past four years as the Bulldogs boss and was Netball New Zealand chief executive for six years prior to that.

Former Wallabies coach Robbie Deans. Photo: Simon Alekna

Castle beat former Wallabies skipper Phil Kearns for the top job. RA chairman Cameron Clyne said Castle offered “fresh eyes” and it was a “very clear choice that Raelene was absolutely the right candidate”.

Castle wasted no time pledging her Bledisloe Cup allegiance to the Wallabies. But can a New Zealand voice be the one to unite the sport in ?



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Goodbye tax havens? Facebook vows to pay local taxes

Facebook is changing its tax structure so that it will pay taxes in 25 countries where sales are made, rather than funnelling its ad sales through its Irish subsidiary.
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The company said it will move to a “local selling structure” in countries where it has an office to support sales to local advertisers. Facebook shifted its international business operations to Ireland in 2010.

Facebook has since come under pressure from the US and Europe for its tax practices. Last year, the company said it would stop routing UK sales through Ireland after public outcry over news that Facebook paid only ??4327 ($70470) in taxes in 2014. In the US, the company is locked in a battle with the Internal Revenue Service that may cost it more than $US5 billion ($6.3 billion), plus interest and penalties, related to global operations that are reported by the Irish unit.

“We believe that moving to a local selling structure will provide more transparency to governments and policy makers around the world who have called for greater visibility over the revenue associated with locally supported sales in their countries,” chief financial officer Dave Wehner wrote in a statement.

The European Commission is looking into ways to tax digital companies like Facebook as it seeks to raise money from an industry that the commission says provides less tax than it should.

The Commission also has ordered Apple to pay about ???13 billion ($19.5 billion) in back taxes to Ireland, after it said the country granted unfair deals that reduced the tech giant’s corporate tax bill. Apple and Ireland are appealing the ruling.

Facebook’s announcement is an “important change that is a step in the right direction,” the Italian Treasury said in a statement.

Wehner said Facebook plans to implement the change through 2018 with a goal of switching all its offices to the new structure by the first half of 2019.

The company has more than 30 international offices. Facebook said it will keep its US headquarters in suburban San Francisco, and Dublin will continue to be the international hub.

Bloomberg



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Property Watch: Pokolbin estate listed for sale with $5.5 million price guide

TRANQUILITY: This Hunter Valley Estate is being marketed through an expressions of interest campaign and is expected to sell in the new year for over $5 million.A “spectacular”25-acre property right in the heart of Hunter Valley Wine Country with a guide of $5.5 million is being marketedas “the most talked-about listing to come to market this year”
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Cain Beckett of Jurds Real Estate is marketing the property at 138 Gillards Road, Pokolbin.

It features a luxurious homestead with breathtaking mountain views and also has a pool, tennis court, cellar door, restaurant, winery, additional cottage and a boutique vineyard.

“It’s an exceptionally large luxury home and it’s the prime location in the Hunter Valley,” Mr Beckett said.

“If you’re going to live in wine country, that’s where you want to be. It’s got everything.”

The property hit the market two weeks ago and has already caught the eye of plenty of prospective buyers.

“The interest is strong and isalmost exclusively coming out of Sydney,” he said.

“But you do find there is a Newcastle marketbecause it’s reasonably accessible and offers apretty good lifestyle.”

The property is being marketed through an expressions of interest campaign.

AERO STANDS TALLGWH Build’s newest multi-story residential development AERO on 770 Hunter Street has been completed and settlements are being taken and residents moving in.

It is located at 770 Hunter Street and is currently the tallest building in Newcastle at 14 storeys high.

It features 45 architecturally designed apartmentswithcommercial spaceat street level.

Residents will also benefit from the communal rooftop terrace with 360 degree views of the region.

OPEN FOR BUSINESS: GWH Build have completed construction of the city’s tallest building AERO, which has a rooftop terrace. Picture: Jon Reid, Sharperstill

HISTORIC WARATAHBuilt circa 1870, it is believed to be one of the original homes of Waratah.

The home at 45 Platt Street is being marketed by Robert Crawford, of Robert Crawford Real Estate, and retains many of its original features, including convict brickwork.

Its first open home will be held today at 11am and it has been listed with a price range of $620,000 to $670,000.

ORIGINAL CHARM: This residence was built in the late 1800s and was one of the first homes of Waratah. It still features convict brickwork.

GIFT FOR HMRIFirst National Newcastle City were in the gift-giving spirit as the festive season approached, donating$20,000 to the lifesaving medical research organisation Hunter Medical Research Institute (HMRI) this month.

The money was raised during the agency’sSpring Fling Auction Campaign and PrincipalGeorge Rafty was honoured to present the final cheque.

“As a local small business, we are extremely pleased that we can give back to such an important organisation,” he said.

“I have personal reasons for supporting the organisation, with parents on both side of my family having succumbed to cancer and stroke in recent times.

“It is devastating to watch loved ones fight against a disease that researchers may one day be able to cure”.

RARE RELEASEThree near-level, north-facing and generous-sized lots with golf frontage in The Vintage are being marketed through Vintage Realty as part of a limited land release in the Hunter Valley golf estate.

The lots range in size from 771 square metres to 827 square metres and from $375,000 to $399,000 in price.

TREND CONTINUESA development site at 57 Bulls Garden Road that was marketed with a guide of $2 million through Street Property Group’s Andrew Walker has sold for an undisclosed sum.

It has development application approval for seven blocks of land with houses and continues a trend for the road which has experienced plenty of market activity this year.

Read more:

Waterfront property reaches new heightsMaryville trend continues for auctionsEntertaining options all year round



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AFL staffer resigns after sexual harassment complaints

The Age, News 22/05/2017, picture by Justin McManus. Launch of the AFL Sir Douglas Nicholls Indigenous round at the statue of Sir Douglas Nicholls and wife Lady Gladys Nicholls. AFL General Manager Inclusion and Social Policy Tanya Hosch.
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An AFL staff member has been forced to resign following a string of sexual harassment complaints.

It is understood the male staffer would drink at work functions and act inappropriately towards female colleagues.

He is believed to have been in a relatively junior role at AFL head office.

One complaint was made about his behaviour before other female staff members also came forward.

The league’s general manager of inclusion and social policy Tanya Hosch said the AFL strived to protect staff to the “highest possible standards.”

“The AFL continues to strive for the highest standards at all times,” Ms Hosch said. “Our organisation’s responsibility is to provide an environment that is inclusive and free from any form of discrimination.”

“We know that people reporting inappropriate behaviour with confidence that they will be taken seriously and responded to fairly and thoroughly is crucial to us meeting these standards.”

The latest incident follows a scandal-ridden year for the league after Richmond and the AFL suspended premiership defender Nathan Broad for the first three home-and-away games of the 2018 season as punishment for sharing a photo of a topless woman without her consent.

The incident prompted a police investigation, which was later dropped at the woman’s request.

Earlier in the year, the AFL was rocked by revelations that then football operations boss Simon Lethlean and then general manager of commercial Richard Simkiss had conducted “inappropriate” relationships with younger female staff members.

They resigned from their senior roles in July.

At the time, AFL boss Gillon McLachlan denied the league had a culture problem and said he had reached out to the two women involved.

“The AFL that I want to lead is a professional organisation based on integrity, respect, care for each other and responsibility,” McLachlan said.

“We are committed to a process of change and I am confident that change is being seen across the industry.”

After the Richmond topless photo scandal, Tigers president Peggy O’Neal said clubs were light years ahead of the AFL in enforcing the AFL’s Respect and Responsibility Policy.

Since then the AFL has established an anonymous harassment complaints portal as part of a sweeping new set of guidelines aimed at protecting women.



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The girl who topped engineering at a boys school

The top engineering HSC student at Randwick Boys’ High School is a champion athlete. And a girl.
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Scarlett Pye, 17, was a student at the neighbouring Randwick Girls’ High when she desperately wanted to study engineering but her school did not offer it. Rather than miss out, the state 400m hurdles champion joined a class of about 20 boys to study it for the HSC.

She excelled and topped the subject in years 11 and 12 and is confident it will be her best subject when HSC results are released on Thursday morning.

“I love building and designing things and I have some cousins who are engineers and so it is something I always thought I would love to do,” Scarlett said.

“The boys in my class were great and all very supportive.”

She hopes to study at civil engineering and surveying at the University of NSW or aeronautical engineering at Sydney University.

But Scarlett, who has been the state 400m hurdles champion for three years and is the national silver medallist, also has her sights on the Olympics, either Tokyo in 2020 or Paris in 2024. She is used to juggling training with her studies.

She competed in the NSW All Schools championship the day before she sat her first HSC exam but she says training kept her calm during year 12.

Studying for the HSC and training several times a week, as well as travelling for meets, made studying “very difficult” but she never dreamed of giving it away.

“If I keep training and competing like I am now, I definitely have a good chance of making it to the Olympics,” she said.

“I think if I didn’t keep running, I would have been totally overwhelmed by the HSC if I didn’t have that balance.”

Scarlett is coached by her father and is a member of the Asics West Track and Field Club at Auburn. She said without the support of her family and her teachers and principals at both schools, she could not have managed to do so well.

The principal of Randwick Girls, Lucy Andre, said Scarlett had always been an exceptional role model at the school.

“Scarlett displays a lot of leadership qualities and she is never scared of a new challenge,” Ms Andre said.

“She is an excellent role model of the girls in this school.”



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Unique approach to Seniors Living

UNIQUE: Cameron Glen will offer the freedom and the independence of a retirement village with all the support of a traditional aged care facility.A new exciting concept in Seniors Living is coming to Newcastle.
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It’s called Cameron Glen, and combinesthe three tiers of traditional Seniors Living:

All with your own villa unit in one village. There is nothing like this in Newcastle.

The advantages of such a village include:

Couples stay together regardless of each individuals health care needsYou have your own home with a full kitchen and a community centre kitchen for mealsNo ACAT or means testing involved but you can obtain or bring your ACAT fundingYou choose and change the type and level of domestic and care services as you needOn-site Nursing staff available to provide care services 24 hours a day 7 days a weekThe village can cater for non-violent dementia and palliative careYou don’t have to move from one villa unit or village to another as your needs changeIt should only be necessary to pay a deferred management fee once in your lifeMeals will be available for lunch and dinner, 7 days a week in the Community Centre dining room at very affordable prices for residents who don’t wish to cook, and a fully catered morning tea will be served every day free of charge for all residents.

The Community Centre is also used for resident activities like exercise classes, bingo, craft sessions, movie nights and visiting entertainers. There is a village bus for regular shopping trips and outings.

The Nursing staff provide 24/7 care in the home of residents.

Some residents won’t need any care. Some may only need help getting started in the morning with showering and dressing and medication supervision. Some may require high care.

Residents live in their own fully self-contained villa unit.

This can be either one, two or three bedrooms, with either one or two bathrooms.

The units come fully equipped with all appliances. Each unit has its own sunny, private rear courtyard.

Cameron Glen will be a fully accredited Approved Aged Care provider that can facilitate access to Government Funded Home Care packages for residents.

The team behind Cameron Glenunderstand that seniors want to live as independently as possible but also feel they are independent, in control, maintain their dignityand self-worth.

They want to live in their own home and receive all the domestic and care support they need.

This is what Cameron Glen provides. This is what makes Cameron Glen unique.

Cameron Glen is very different to any other Seniors’ Living complex.

It offers the freedom and the independence of a retirement village with all the support of a traditional aged care facility.

Call 4958 8880 today for your information pack.



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THE HERALD’S OPINION: Hunter out-of-home care provider quizzed over its operations

PRIVATISATION has been one of the most dominant political trends of the past 30 or so years. While some on the left still rally against privatisation in any guise, most people seem nowadays comfortable withprivatising a hostof services that were once run by government.
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Recently, enthusiasm for privatisation has resulted in a wholesale overhaul of the disability sector, with the NSW government handing over all of its responsibilities in this area to a range of operators. A similar process is happening in the out-of-home care sector, and while a lot of the organisations, such as Life Without Barriers, are set up as not-for-profits, there are other groups that are privately owned and run with a firm eye towards making a profit out of the provision of services that are funded often entirely by taxpayers. One such operator is the Cardiff-based Premier Youthworks, which looks after about 80 children in the Hunter and the ACT. Late last year, Premier, along with Life Without Barriers, was examined by the ABC’s Four Corners, where questions were raised about the amount of money that appeared to be flowing to the company, in contrast with an alleged paucity of funds going towards the children in care.

A year later, new concerns have been raised about the company: concerns that the company’s sole director dismisses as coming from disgruntled former employees. This may be the case, but that need not necessarily mean that the concerns are unfounded.

In the wake of the Four Corners episode, the state government funding agency began a review of Premier, but as is almost invariably the custom in this regard, the government is refusing to say anything meaningful about its investigation. The Newcastle Herald accepts without reservation that the job that Premier and other agencies are paid by the government to do is extremely demanding. Many of the children have what are usually termed “complex and challenging behaviours”. Looking after them can be difficult, and sometimes dangerous, work.

But taking on this admittedly onerous rolecannot become a rationale for excessive profit-taking.Premier has acknowledged a need for more “transparency” in its reporting, but unless the government providesa corresponding transparency when it comes to its dealings with subcontractors such as Premier,thenthe public has no real assurance that the system is working. Or, most importantly of all, that the children are being given the best care possible.

ISSUE: 38,673.



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World’s biggest 100 polluting companies put on notice by investors to tackle climate change

Shareholders have turned up the heat on the world’s 100 biggest polluting companies including n firms BHP Billiton, Wesfarmers and Rio Tinto, in the first coordinated global effort by investors to force corporate action on climate change.
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The Climate Action 100+ initiative, to be launched in Paris on Tuesday evening eastern standard time, will target 100 global companies responsible for an estimated 15 per cent of global emissions.

It marks a significant escalation of investor pressure on corporations to rein in greenhouse gas emissions, improve climate-related financial disclosures and increase governance on climate change.

More than 200 of the world’s biggest investors, responsible for $26 trillion in assets, have signed up to the initiative. It includes n investment giants n Super, AMP Capital, VicSuper, First State Super, Hesta and Cbus.

Shareholder action on climate change has been gathering pace, given new momentum by the Paris climate accord. A strong response from the international corporate sector is needed if the goal of limiting the global rise in average temperatures to no more than two degrees is to be met.

Emma Herd, chief executive of the Investor Group on Climate Change in , said two years had passed since the Paris climate deal was signed and investors now wanted “action that’s faster and goes further than what we’ve seen before”.

Ms Herd cited Exxon Mobil, the world’s biggest oil company, which was this year forced by a shareholder vote to be more transparent about the impact of climate change on its business.

“Engagement between investors and the companies they own is one of the core foundations of our economy and how it runs,” she said.

If a company does not respond to investor demands on climate change, shareholder options include resolutions and votes, and divestment.

Investors who sign up to the effort can nominate companies to be added to the list.

Companies in the sectors of oil and gas, electricity and transport make up the bulk of the 100 companies. It also includes PepsiCo and Nestle, as well as the Wesfarmers group which includes Coles, Bunnings, Kmart, Target and Officeworks, as well as coal mine assets.

A spokesperson for Wesfarmers said: “Wesfarmers regularly engages with investors on this issue and will continue to do so. As a group, we strive to reduce the emissions intensity of our businesses and improve their resilience to climate change.”

The methodology used to compile the list included direct and indirect emissions, as well as emissions from transport and product consumption.

Anne Simpson, investment director of sustainability at CalPERS, the largest public pension system in the United States, said there was “nowhere to hide from climate risk”.

“Ultimately shareholders are the owners of these companies and … if we don’t make sure these companies make the transformation to a low carbon economy we are exposed to the risks of their emissions, not just directly through the investments we’ve got in those companies but also by the indirect impact on all the other assets in our portfolio,” she said.

BHP Billiton declined to comment. Its latest annual report said it had a “strong record of supporting and complying with robust reporting requirements on climate change issues”.

Rio Tinto had not responded at the time of publication. The company’s website says it is “taking action to improve productivity and reduce emissions. Our challenge is to meet the world’s growing needs for the metals and minerals we produce, while addressing the issue of climate change.”



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