June 3, 2021 Find out more Facebook’s Oversight Board is just a stopgap, regulation urgently needed, RSF says October 18, 2018 US – Newly-released FBI documents show agency’s impersonation of journalists News RSF_en WhatsApp blocks accounts of at least seven Gaza Strip journalists June 7, 2021 Find out more “The FBI’s impersonation of journalists and filmmakers is of great concern to the press freedom community,” said Margaux Ewen, Director of RSF’s North America bureau. “Any uncertainty regarding a journalist or filmmaker’s identity and motives for investigation can seriously hinder the media’s news-gathering abilities, and can endanger those working among hostile actors, who may use this program as an excuse to target or strong-arm journalists.” News The US ranks 45th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2018 World Press Freedom Index after falling 2 places in the last year. Receive email alerts Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is concerned by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) guidelines for impersonating journalists as part of covert activities and operations, which were made public on October 5. These documents provide new insight into a program that poses a threat to the credibility of independent journalists. United StatesAmericas April 28, 2021 Find out more NSO Group hasn’t kept its promises on human rights, RSF and other NGOs say Organisation Help by sharing this information The FBI publicly released on October 5 its guidelines for impersonating journalists and documentary filmmakers as part of its covert activities and operations. This was made possible after the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press (RCFP) filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) due to the agency’s failure to respond to a request for information concerning the impersonation of documentarians. Included in these guidelines is the procedure FBI employees must follow to obtain approval for impersonating a member of the news media, which includes submitting an application to the Undercover Review Committee at FBI headquarters and receiving consent from the FBI Deputy Director, who must first consult with the Deputy Attorney General. The guidelines do not, however, outline the criteria that the Deputy Director and Deputy Attorney General consider when approving these requests. to go further News United StatesAmericas News Follow the news on United States Along with RCFP’s legal arguments in its lawsuit, two documentary filmmakers—David Byars and Abby Ellis— submitted signed affidavits stating the agency’s impersonation schemes have made their jobs more difficult. While the FBI has impersonated documentary filmmakers and journalists undercover for decades, these documents outline never-before-seen specifics of the agency’s guidelines. Attention to this controversial practice intensified in 2014 when then-FBI Director James Comey revealed an agent had posed as an Associated Press reporter years prior during a criminal investigation. It remains unknown how often the agency has relied on this tactic to elicit information.
Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Print This Post Home / Daily Dose / Marcia Fudge Vows to Serve Most Vulnerable Americans January 28, 2021 12,160 Views Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago 2021-01-28 Christina Hughes Babb Related Articles Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Marcia Fudge appeared Thursday before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs as a Biden-Harris administration nominee to serve as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The 68-year-old faced a few challenging questions from Republicans, but ultimately made a strong case for her commitment and drive to confront the immediate challenge of keeping millions of Americans in their homes amid a national health crisis while also working alongside the new administration to dismantle discriminatory housing policies.Fudge attended the hearing remotely from her home in Warrensville Heights, Ohio, and she introduced family members, including her 87-year-old mother, who observed Fudge’s confirmation from the background.The former chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus who previously served as Warrensville Heights’ first African American and first female mayor, told committee members her first priority would be to get people the support they need “to come back from the edge.””It’s estimated that, on any given night in 2019, more than half a million people experienced homelessness in America. That’s a devastating statistic — even before you consider the reality of what COVID-19 has done to exacerbate the crisis,” she said.”As mayor of Warrensville Heights, Ohio I saw firsthand the need for economic development and affordable housing. We improved the city’s tax base and expanded affordable housing opportunities. As a Member of Congress, I tackled the unique challenges of my district, working with my delegation and across the aisle,” Fudge added.During the 75-minute hearing, a number of Republican senators, including Sen. Patrick J. Toomey (R-PA), acting committee chairman who presided over the hearing, challenged Fudge on past “intemperate” comments about race and party-over-policy disagreements.“Sometimes I am a little passionate about things,” Fudge told Toomey. “Is my tone pitch perfect all the time? It is not. But I do know this, that I have the ability and the capacity to work with Republicans and I intend to do just that and that is my commitment to you.”Fudge outlined the following dire stats during her prepared statement:”Tens of millions of Americans are behind on rent, according to Fudge, and almost 3 million homeowners are in forbearance; another 800,000 borrowers are delinquent. Fudge said the $25 billion that Congress has provided in rental assistance and the government’s extension of the eviction moratorium are not enough. Latinos and Black Americans are more likely than White people to have reported job losses during the recession induced by the coronavirus pandemic, and people struggling to pay rent continue to be served with eviction notices despite moratoriums.””According to one study, 21 million Americans currently pay more than 30 percent of their income on housing. Because of lost income and unemployment due to COVID, 1 in 5 renters and 1 in 10 homeowners with a mortgage are behind on their housing payments.”As part of executive orders pertaining to racial equity, Biden this week sought to strengthen anti-discrimination housing policies.”It bears mentioning, particularly in this moment of crisis, that HUD — perhaps more than any other department — exists to serve the most vulnerable people in America,” Fudge told the lawmakers. “That mandate matters a great deal to me. It is consistent with my own values, and it is precisely what has always motivated me to service.”WATCH: Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Marcia Fudge (@mlfudge) delivers an opening statement at her Senate Banking Committee confirmation hearing.Full video here: https://t.co/AaTEoLFOrP pic.twitter.com/1Nty8RTIex— CSPAN (@cspan) January 28, 2021Fudge says her desire is to make the dream of homeownership — and the security and wealth creation that comes with it — a reality for more Americans.”That will require us to end discriminatory practices in the housing market, and ensure that our fair housing rules are doing what they are supposed to do: opening the door for families, especially families of color who have been systematically kept out in the cold across generations, to buy homes and punch their ticket to the middle class.” Christina Hughes Babb is a reporter for DS News and MReport. A graduate of Southern Methodist University, she has been a reporter, editor, and publisher in the Dallas area for more than 15 years. During her 10 years at Advocate Media and Dallas Magazine, she published thousands of articles covering local politics, real estate, development, crime, the arts, entertainment, and human interest, among other topics. She has won two national Mayborn School of Journalism Ten Spurs awards for nonfiction, and has penned pieces for Texas Monthly, Salon.com, Dallas Observer, Edible, and the Dallas Morning News, among others. 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Progress will also be affected by the current restrictions related to the Covid 19 virus The Hammerfest LNG plant. (Credit: Helge Hansen / Equinor ASA) Surveys of the damage after the fire at Hammerfest LNG on 28 September indicates that the LNG plant will be closed for up to 12 months for repairs.In addition to damage caused by the fire on the air intake on one of the plant’s five power turbines, large amounts of seawater from the extinguishing have damaged other auxiliary systems such as electrical equipment and cables in the plant.It is the scope of work of this consequential damage that are considered the most extensive and the duration of the shutdown will depend on the delivery time of necessary equipment. Progress will also be affected by the current restrictions related to the Covid 19 virus.“Safety is the first priority and we will not start the plant until we are sure that it can be done in a safe way. Therefore, we have worked systematically and thoroughly to survey the damage after the fire, and assess the technical condition of the plant,” says plant director Andreas Sandvik.“Although a lot of inspection work still remains and there is still significant uncertainty, our best estimate now is that that it may take up until 1 October 2021 to get Hammerfest LNG back into production.”“We will use the shutdown period to also carry out other maintenance and repair work planned for 2021. This includes both ongoing maintenance and maintenance planned in a planned turnaround next spring,” Sandvik says.Equinor, as well as the PSA and the police have started independent investigations of the fire.“The fire at Hammerfest LNG was a serious incident. The various investigations into the incident will be important in order to identify measures that will prevent similar incidents from happening again,” says Grete B. Haaland, senior vice president for Equinor’s onshore facilities. Source: Company Press Release