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“I had to apologise to my children”

first_imgPrint WATCH: “Everyone is fighting so hard to get on” – Pat Ryan on competitive camogie squads Predictions on the future of learning discussed at Limerick Lifelong Learning Festival Facebook TAGSAdapt HouseDomestic abusefeaturedlimerick Twitter by Bernie [email protected] up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up “When I left him, I had to apologise to my kids for bringing them up in a place where their mother lived in terror. It was the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life”.Those are the words of Limerick City woman, Deirdre, who left and abusive marriage after 25 years of being at the mercy of her husband’s absolute control and violent mood swings.“I never thought I was in an abusive relationship because he never laid a finger on me, Yet now I know that’s exactly what it was.I lived in fear of how he would be when he came through the door for all those years”.Deirdre was sharing her experience of escaping abuse during the international 16 days of opposition to violence against women.When Deirdre married, she had no idea what was ahead.“The first time I saw him carry on the way he did for most of our marriage was after our second child was born. He was hammering at something on the landing. It was late at night and a neighbour came in and asked me to ask him to stop the noise.“When I did, he threw the hammer at me from the top of the stairs”.“He was depressed and he would stay in bed for most of the day. But I had to listen for his every move and have a cup of tea ready, at drinkable temperature, when he finally came down the stairs. If it wasn’t how he liked it, he would throw it at me”.Deirdre says she lost her friends as she could never predict whether her husband would be gracious or insulting to them if they called. “I had no social life. He wanted to know where I was every minute of every day. If I went anywhere, he would call my mobile constantly and it had better be switched on”.A combination of depression and drink added fuel to her husband’s fire and the final straw came when their teenage son walked out of the house in the middle of the night after being roused by “roaring and shouting. He demanded we go after him and when we found my son, he hit him. That was the end for me. I realised that this wasn’t normal.”.Deirdre planned to use money she had stashed to accommodate her husband’s drinking to get away. She initially went to another part of the country and then was put in touch with Adapt services in Limerick.“I stayed with them for a few months and I can’t say enough about the support they gave me. When I wanted to talk, they were there. When I couldn’t talk about it, they were there too”.Deirdre has since moved back into the marital home that her husband left and has found a job.“I want women to know that just because they don’t have physical bruises doesn’t mean that they are not suffering abuse. But there is support and there is escape”, she said. Vanishing Ireland podcast documenting interviews with people over 70’s, looking for volunteers to share their stories WhatsApp Previous article€10 000 missing from Limerick PrisonNext articleOn Catching the Train Bernie Englishhttp://www.limerickpost.ieBernie English has been working as a journalist in national and local media for more than thirty years. She worked as a staff journalist with the Irish Press and Evening Press before moving to Clare. She has worked as a freelance for all of the national newspaper titles and a staff journalist in Limerick, helping to launch the Limerick edition of The Evening Echo. Bernie was involved in the launch of The Clare People where she was responsible for business and industry news. center_img News“I had to apologise to my children”By Bernie English – December 4, 2015 803 RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Limerick Ladies National Football League opener to be streamed live Advertisement Limerick’s National Camogie League double header to be streamed live Limerick Artist ‘Willzee’ releases new Music Video – “A Dream of Peace” Email Linkedinlast_img read more

China to finance 500MW of renewable energy development in Bangladesh

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享PV Magazine:The Chinese government will finance 500 MW of renewable energy generation capacity in One Belt, One Road member state Bangladesh, 450 MW of it solar.The two countries are today due to sign a memorandum of understanding for a joint venture company to develop solar capacity in Bangladesh’s northern districts of Pabna, Sirajganj and Gaibandha plus wind power generation near the port of Payra, in the south.Bangladesh’s North-West Power Generation Company Limited and China’s National Machinery Import and Export Corporation will establish Bangladesh-China Power Company (Pvt.) Limited Renewables to develop the projects, with Bangladesh said to be providing land and China an estimated $500 million investment.The projects would almost double Bangladesh’s current clean energy capacity, which stands at 601 MW. Almost 368 MW of that figure comes from solar, of which 71.86 MW is grid connected.Although the 20 MW solar facility in the Teknaf sub-district which came online in September is the largest solar project in the country to date, the Bangladesh government has approved plans for 1 GW of renewables capacity with projects up to 200 MW in scale. The south Asian nation aims to produce 10 per cent of its electricity from renewables by next year.More: China to fund 450 MW of solar capacity in Bangladesh China to finance 500MW of renewable energy development in Bangladeshlast_img read more

‘Trigger warnings’ spark a battle in the classroom

first_imgVanessa Diaz was scribbling notes for her “African Diaspora” class last semester when her professor stopped and made an informal announcement to the room.“If it’s too much,” he said, “you don’t have to look at it.”The lecture that day was to be centered on the historical lynchings of African Americans in the United States, coupled with graphic images and detailed narratives of the individuals killed. The professor made it clear that if any students wanted to excuse themselves, they had the right to.The professor’s precaution, though small, is indicative of a growing trend in the college classroom of implementing trigger warnings: verbal or written disclaimers meant to warn students of potentially distressing material preceding its dissemination.While originating as a means to predominantly protect students who have previously experienced trauma, the practice’s effects are now causing a tug-of-war between the needs of a professor’s academic freedom and those of students’ well-being.“Students have the right not to be traumatized in the classroom,” said Diaz, a junior majoring in American studies and executive co-director of USC’s Women’s Student Assembly. “The trigger warning in the syllabus from class that day had me prepared. I walked in knowing what I was getting into and knowing beforehand that I could deal with it.”Diaz and other student advocates of trigger warnings encourage their utility at universities as a safe way to prevent mental health relapses in the classroom, and some members of the faculty agree.Leslie Berntsen, a teaching assistant for introductory psychology classes and chair of the TA Fellows program at the Center for Excellence in Teaching, uses trigger warnings in her discussions. She said reaction is overwhelmingly positive, and that students have emailed her after class, thanking her for the “heads up” before particularly sensitive topics.“I don’t think there’s anything particularly radical about [trigger warnings],” Berntsen said. “It’s not a huge deal, my academic freedom has never been threatened, my classroom has not combusted.”Nevertheless, the fear among faculty is there, and not all share Bernsten’s enthusiasm. Anthony Sparks, now a professor at California State University, Fullerton, was Diaz’s African Diaspora professor. He said that his decision in class that day was more an exception to the rule than a common practice, and in general, he finds the idea of trigger warnings debilitating to the classroom.“For me, a trigger warning is more wrapped up in comforting a student — making them comfortable at all times — versus providing context and giving the student a framework in order to view, encounter or discuss the material,” he said. “There’s a difference between the two.”Similarly, Alison Trope, clinical professor of communication and director of undergraduate studies in the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, thinks that students should have the right to excuse themselves if they are especially affected by course material, but doesn’t believe trigger warnings should be required on teacher’s syllabi. For her, the practice is treating a symptom of a larger problem: a need for greater cultural competency and sensitivity among faculty and students.“A trigger warning should not be necessary if, as members of an academic community, we can be sensitive and empathetic partners in an ongoing dialogue,” she wrote in an email to the Daily Trojan.Trope and Sparks aren’t alone on campus in their hesitations. Trope, who is also co-chair of the newly formed Academic Senate Committee on Campus Climate, said the topic has not been discussed explicitly within the committee but notes there are strong sentiments among faculty — both at USC and nationwide — concerning the cost of trigger warnings.“The main hesitation faculty have (important caveat … this is not ALL faculty, nor is this limited to USC) is twofold,” Trope wrote. “Trigger warnings are seen as a potential threat to academic freedom. And, related, they are characterized (or mischaracterized in some cases) as ‘coddling’ students.”These two points are the most frequently cited reasons against trigger warnings, most notably in the idea of the practice sheltering students from harmful discourse. An Atlantic cover story last September dubbed “The Coddling of the American Mind,” was an 8,000-word piece deriding the practice as counterintuitive to treating mental health and indicative of an increasingly sensitive generation, and the most notable example of public backlash.For some students at USC, national outcry from older generations has them both frustrated and on the defensive.“I was really disappointed [by it],”  said Sophia Li, a junior majoring in law, history and culture and sociology, regarding media coverage maligning trigger warnings. “I usually love The Atlantic, [but] I think it completely missed the point and mischaracterized the point of trigger warnings and the people advocating for them.”Diaz, too, was thrown off by what she sees as a blatant lack of empathy among critics, and an inability to view those in the classroom in a multidimensional fashion.“People try to separate the student and the person,” she said. “Logic and emotion don’t exist in binary ways. The idea that we should remove our own experiences is impossible.”This trend of confusion is common. Those advocating trigger warnings see them as beneficial for those who need them and inconsequential for those who don’t. Questions of academic freedom and student “coddling,” they say, are misinformed and misguided.“I wish [critics] would take a step back and reflect why they think they’re qualified to determine what people are allowed to be offended by,” Berntsen said. “This entire debate about trigger warnings comes down to basic human empathy. These aren’t radical concepts, but somehow the entire discourse has evolved into something that I don’t understand.”Here at USC, some of the practice’s most vocal critics have reached campus. At a speaking event hosted by the USC College Republicans in October, journalist Milo Yiannopoulos maligned trigger warnings as an egregious and intolerable offense against the academic culture of a university. Students requesting them, he said, shouldn’t be at college.“My basic response to this is anyone who wants a trigger warning should be immediately expelled,” Yiannopoulos said. “They’ve demonstrated that they are incapable of completing requirements of their course. They’ve chosen to use slippery and unnecessary tactics based on dodgy cognitive science to suggest that people can’t be exposed to certain ideas because they’re so hurtful or traumatic. All of this is nonsense.”While not nearly as hyperbolic in tone, there are some students who agree that trigger warnings don’t necessarily belong in an academic setting.The leading campus student organization on mental health, the USC National Alliance on Mental Illness, or USC NAMI, came out with an official response against trigger warnings in response to this article. The organization cited the practice as harming students’ mental health rather than helping it and allowing for censorship in the classroom. While they said that professors should allow an alternative assignment or excused absence from class if a student specifically asks in advance, they stressed it is the student’s responsibility, not the professor’s, to address the issue.“NAMI does not support trigger warnings,” the statement read. “Despite the good intentions behind trigger warnings, we believe they would be detrimental to the student population in more ways than one.”In an interview, USC NAMI co-presidents Steve Navarrete and Rosemarie Wilson expanded that the diversity of mental health illnesses coupled with the professor’s necessity to teach freely makes trigger warnings both burdensome and predominantly unnecessary.“You can’t possibly warn everyone for something,” Navarrete said. “Where do you draw that line? Where does it become appropriate? It really limits what you can do as a professor, and as a professor you don’t want to be limited. You want to be able to discuss what the world is. That’s exactly what we’re trying to do here as a university, which is to learn, not be censored. Otherwise, what’s the point?”As of now, there is nothing in existence nor immediately planned at USC to mandate or even encourage professors to issue trigger warnings. But as the dialogue surrounding mental health increases on campuses nationwide, more eyes are shifting to the responsibility of campus educators.“We’re clearly showing a shift toward mental health at USC, but there’s still more the University could do,” Wilson said. “Professors and faculty members need to be trained better on mental health because a lot don’t know how to respond to crisis.”last_img read more