Daily Archives: February 27, 2015

Adoption by same-sex parent recognized by Alabama appeals court

A box of cupcakes are seen topped with icons of same-sex couples at City Hall in San Francisco, June 29, 2013. REUTERS/Stephen Lam

A box of cupcakes are seen topped with icons of same-sex couples at City Hall in San Francisco, June 29, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Stephen Lam

<span class="articleLocatio

n”>(Reuters) – An Alabama appeals court ruled on Friday that the state must recognize the out-of-state adoption of three children by the estranged wife of their birth mother, lawyers for the plaintiff said.

The decision comes as a handful of Alabama judges have refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples in defiance of a federal ruling, and as another same-sex couple in Mobile has sued seeking similar adoption rights.

Alabama this month became the 37th state where gay marriage is legal after the U.S. Supreme Court refused to stay a federal ruling that struck down Alabama’s ban on same-sex marriage. Despite that, Roy Moore, the conservative chief justice of the state’s Supreme Court, has directed judges not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

The U.S. Supreme Court will by the end of June decide whether states can ban gay marriage.

Friday’s ruling applies to a case involving an Alabama couple who married in Georgia. One of the women, both of whom are referred to in court documents by their initials, gave birth to three children via insemination, and the other legally adopted them in Georgia.

When their relationship ended, the biological mother kept her former spouse from seeing the children, and the latter sued for visitation rights in Alabama, where they both lived, lawyers for the plaintiff said.

“We are elated that our client and her children will not be kept apart, and that the Alabama Court of Appeals correctly applied black and white constitutional law requiring all states to recognize court orders from other states, including adoptions by same-sex parents,” said Cathy Sakimura, an attorney for the National Center for Lesbian Rights, which represented the plaintiff.

Separately, a plaintiff in the case in which a federal judge last month overturned Alabama’s gay marriage ban is suing a local judge in Mobile who has refused to finalize her adoption of her wife’s biological son until after the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled on gay marriage.

A hearing in that case has been scheduled for March 2.

The same local judge began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples only when he was ordered to do so by U.S. District Judge Callie Granade, after he had defied her initial ruling.

(Reporting by Jonathan Kaminsky in New Orleans)

Source: Newsjyoti Lifestyle

U.S. bill would require congressional review of any Iran deal

Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington February 11, 2015.      REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington February 11, 2015.

Credit: Reuters/Joshua Roberts

(Reuters) – U.S. senators introduced legislation late on Friday requiring congressional review of any deal with Iran over its nuclear program.

The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act would require President Barack Obama to submit to Congress the text of any agreement within five days of concluding a final deal with Iran. The bill would also prohibit Obama from suspending or waiving sanctions on Iran passed by Congress for 60 days after a deal.

“It is important that we preserve the integrity of the congressional sanctions,” said Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker, a Republican who sponsored the measure with Senator Bob Menendez, the top Democrat on the panel, and others.

The bill creates a “responsible review process that will allow Congress the opportunity to approve or disapprove the agreement before the administration could attempt to remove these sanctions,” Corker said.

The foreign relations panel passed a new sanctions bill on Iran this month. But lawmakers are giving the talks between Iran and six countries, including the United States, until a March 24 deadline before that bill would move to the Senate floor.

It was not immediately known when the bill introduced on Friday would come to a vote in the committee.

Talks on an agreement to curb Iran’s nuclear program have advanced substantially, but tough issues remain and a deal is not expected in the coming week, a U.S. official said on Friday.

(Reporting by Timothy Gardner; Editing by Eric Beech)

Source: Newsjyoti Politics

Brit Awards tumble leaves Madonna with 'little bit of a whiplash'

Feb 27 (Reuters) – Madonna said she suffered
whiplash when she was pulled by her cape causing her to fall and
hit her head during a performance at the Brit Awards this week.

The 56-year-old pop star said during a Thursday taping of
“The Jonathan Ross Show” on Britain’s ITV that her gasp-inducing
plunge was a little cosmic comeuppance and not a publicity

“I had a little bit of a whiplash and I smacked the back of
my head, so there was a man standing over me with a flashlight
until about 3 a.m. making sure that I was still conscious,”
Madonna said in an episode of the show that will air on March

She was performing her new song “Living for Love” at the
British music industry awards on Wednesday when she failed to
loosen the cape from her matador costume before her dancers
pulled it away.

A little dazed, Madonna rose to her feet before finishing
the song. The fall overshadowed the awards and video of the
plunge immediately circulated online.

“I didn’t hurt my butt, I hurt my head,” Madonna said of the
tumble down three stairs that were stage props.

“Honestly the universe was, I don’t know, trying to teach me
a lesson I guess, I don’t know,” she added.

(Reporting by Edward Baran; Writing by Eric Kelsey; editing by
Andrew Hay)

Source: Newsjyoti

White House releases draft bill to protect consumer data privacy

(Reuters) – The White House released draft legislation on Friday that would give consumers more control over how the trail of data they leave behind them on the internet is used, stored and sold.

The 24-page “discussion draft” on data privacy immediately sparked sharp reaction from the technology industry, which said the proposal would hurt innovation, and also from privacy advocacy groups that said it did not go far enough.

President Barack Obama has made cyber security a major focus in the wake of high-profile hacks at companies such as Sony Pictures Anthem Inc and Target Corp.

Obama has also proposed legislation to help the government and private sector more readily share cyber attack data, a new national standard requiring companies to tell consumers about data breaches within 30 days, and new protections for student data.

Obama has come under fire from privacy groups and technology companies alike after leaks from former contractor Edward Snowden revealed the extent of government surveillance online.

The data privacy bill would codify a voluntary “Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights” the White House created in 2012.

“Even though responsible companies provide us with tools to control privacy settings and decide how our personal information is used, too many Americans still feel they have lost control over their data,” the White House said in a statement.

It would allow industries to develop codes of conduct, overseen by the Federal Trade Commission. The codes would provide “safe harbor” to companies abiding by them.

The Federal Trade Commission would have the authority to enforce the law, and could seek fines of up to $25 million or injunctions for infractions. State attorneys general also could enforce the law in some cases.

The Center for Digital Democracy, a consumer privacy organization, called the bill “a serious setback for privacy” because it relies on industry-created codes.

The Consumer Electronics Association, a lobby group for consumer technology companies, also panned the bill.

“The proposal’s broad definitions, expanded bureaucratic authorities and steep penalties could burden the tech economy with uncertainty and stifle the development of the Internet of Things,” the group said in a release.

A Commerce Department official said the draft tried to strike a balance between protecting privacy and giving businesses flexibility.

“We want to advance President Obama’s framework for protecting consumer privacy by bringing all parties to the table to further discuss how we effectively apply privacy protections in the digital age,” said Lawrence Strickling, administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

(Reporting by Roberta Rampton. Additional reporting by Alina Selyukh. Editing by Andre Grenon)

Source: Newsjyoti Tech

Doctors with bad news seen as less compassionate

<span class="articleLocatio

n”>(Reuters) – Regardless of how they frame the discussion, doctors who deliver bad news may be seen as less compassionate by their patients, a new study suggests.

Patients who watched videos of fictional interactions between doctors and patients felt the doctors delivering bad news were less compassionate than those giving good news, researchers found.

Until recently, doctors and researchers believed that doctors who delivered bad news in an empathetic tone would be seen as sincere, said Dr. Eduardo Bruera, the study’s lead author from the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

But it seems the news itself has an impact on the way patients see doctors.

The researchers showed 100 cancer patients two videos. In one, an actor playing a patient with advanced cancer was told by a doctor that treatment options had been exhausted. The other video showed the same scenario with a similar-looking doctor saying there may be some treatment options.

On a scale of 0 to 50, with 50 being the least compassionate, patients gave the doctor with good news a score of 19, compared to 26 for the doctor with bad news.

Fifty-seven patients said they preferred the doctor delivering the more optimistic message, while 22 preferred the doctor delivering the less optimistic news.

“The patients consistently perceived the doctor who gave the more optimistic message as more compassionate,” Bruera said.

He said the findings may help explain why doctors intuitively have a difficult time delivering bad news to their patients.

“It’s unfortunate, but it’s the reality of life that when the doctor needs to give the patient bad news, the perception of that patient may be that of a less compassionate doctor,” Bruera said.

There needs to be additional research into the findings, Dr. Teresa Gilewski of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City said in an editorial accompanying the new study in JAMA Oncology, online February 26.

“For example, would the patient perception be different with an in-person interaction, a longer discussion, a personal relationship with the physician, or at a different time in the patient’s illness?” wrote Gilewski.

The researchers say future research should account for the trust patients have with their doctors, too.

Still, they also suggest researchers should craft techniques to help doctors deliver bad news without the content affecting the patients’ perceptions of their compassion.

SOURCE: bit.ly/1MZitVK and bit.ly/1MZizgi

JAMA Oncology 2015.

Source: Newsjyoti Health

UPDATE 1-Puerto Rico's Prepa to miss restructuring deadline – official

(Adds details from Donahue’s statement)

Feb 27 (Reuters) – Puerto Rico’s debt-laden power
authority, Prepa, said on Friday that it will hold off on
presenting a restructuring plan as it tries to secure an
extension of an agreement from creditors not to foreclose on its
$9 billion in debt.

The current agreement, which expires on March 31, had called
for a deadline of this Monday for Prepa to unveil a proposal to
restructure about $9 billion in debt. But it will miss that
deadline, Lisa Donahue, Prepa’s chief restructuring officer,
said in a statement.

“We have made significant progress” to negotiate an
extension of the forbearance agreement, “but there is more work
to do and as a result, we have not yet finalized a plan to
present to the forbearing creditors.”

Donahue said she told creditors Prepa “would not satisfy
this milestone,” and that creditors do not plan to call a
default as a result of the delay.

Reuters reported on Thursday that Prepa would likely miss
the deadline as negotiators weigh dropping energy prices and
legislative uncertainty on the island.

(Reporting by Megan Davies and Nick Brown; Editing by Bernard
Orr and Christian Plumb)

Source: Newsjyoti Bankruptcy News

Uber says security breach affected about 50,000 drivers

Sat Feb 28, 2015 4:10am IST

An illustration picture shows the logo of car-sharing service app Uber on a smartphone next to the picture of an official German taxi sign in Frankfurt, September 15, 2014. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

An illustration picture shows the logo of car-sharing service app Uber on a smartphone next to the picture of an official German taxi sign in Frankfurt, September 15, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Kai Pfaffenbach

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<span class="focusParagraph articleLocation”>(Reuters) – A security breach at car service Uber may have disclosed the names and driver’s licence numbers of about 50,000 drivers across multiple states, the company said in a statement on Friday.

The data breach involved current and former Uber drivers, and the company has notified attorneys general in states where those drivers live, including California.

“To date, we have not received any reports of actual misuse of any information as a result of this incident,” the company said. However, Uber advised drivers to monitor their credit reports for fraudulent transactions.

The company has raised more than $4 billion from prominent venture capital firms such as Benchmark and Google Ventures, valuing Uber at $40 billion and making it the most valuable startup in the United States.

Uber also filed a lawsuit in a federal court in San Francisco on Friday against the unnamed individual who accessed the company’s files. Such litigation can be used to help uncover who committed the breach.

Uber said the breach occurred in May 2014 and was discovered in September. The company said it changed database access protocols and began an investigation.

(Editing by Jonathan Oatis)


Source: Newsjyoti India Technology

Lockheed, Sikorsky venture awarded $2.0 bln helicopter support deal

Feb 27 (Reuters) – The U.S. Navy has awarded a
joint venture of Lockheed Martin Corp and Sikorsky
Helicopter a contract worth $2 billion to service the Navy’s
H-60 helicopters through Jan. 31, 2020, the Pentagon announced
on Friday.

The fixed-price contract covers “performance-based
logistics” on 1,710 assemblies and components, and covers the
repair, modification, overhaul and replacement of hardware for
the Navy’s fleet of H-60 helicopters.

The contact was awarded to Marine Helicopter Support Co, a
joint venture of Lockheed and Sikorsky, is a unit of United
Technologies Corp.

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; editing by Gunna Dickson)

Source: Newsjyoti Company News

Puerto Rico's Prepa to miss restructuring deadline – official

Feb 27 (Reuters) – Puerto rico’s debt-laden power
authority, Prepa, said on Friday that it will hold off on
presenting a restructuring plan to creditors as it continues to
negotiate an extension of forbearance agreements with
bondholders and lenders.

The current agreement, which expires on March 31, had called
for a deadline of this Monday for Prepa to unveil a proposal to
restructure about $9 billion in debt. But it will miss that
deadline, Lisa Donahue, Prepa’s chief restructuring officer,
said in a statement.

(Reporting by Megan Davies and Nick Brown; Editing by Bernard

Source: Newsjyoti Bankruptcy News

China imposes trade restrictions on Canadian beef

(Reuters) – China has imposed temporary trade restrictions on Canadian beef and beef products in the wake of Canada’s discovery of mad cow disease earlier this month, Canada said on Friday.

China joins the list of countries that have imposed trade restrictions since Canada confirmed the case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) on Feb. 11, which includes Taiwan, Peru and Belarus.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency made Friday’s announcement in an update on its website.

(Reporting by Randall Palmer, editing by G Crosse)

Source: Newsjyoti Health