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Air Malta will not hire new employees, Finance Minister states

Air Malta will not hire new employees, Finance Minister states
Apr 25 2023 Share

Speaking in parliament on Monday, Finance Minister Clyde Caruana confirmed that Air Malta will not be employing any more people.

The Finance Minister responded to various parliamentary questions by stating that the airline’s workforce has been reduced to 375 from 1,000 whilst under his watch.

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He also insisted that, regardless of the outcome of the Brussels negotiations, Malta will have a national airline. Should the airline continue to operate eight planes, the minister said that the current staffing is optimal. 

This comes after Times of Malta reported how the European Commission forbade any more state aid for the government as the airline’s era comes to an end.

Chairman of the airline David Curmi also confirmed to the same newsroom that a new airline should be introduced by the end of this year. This was not confirmed by the Finance Minister himself, who instead pointed to the ongoing negotiations with the Commission.

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Birth control pills made free in Italy despite drop in birth rates

Apr 24 2023 Share

In a groundbreaking decision, Italy has approved free access to birth control pills for women of all ages. The move comes despite the country experiencing a significant drop in its birth rate in recent years.

The Italian Medicines Agency (AIFA) approved the decision to make oral contraception free, with full implementation pending the validation of the AIFA board of directors. According to AIFA CPR Giovanna Scroccaro’s statement to Quotidiano Sanità, the decision will cost approximately €140 million per year.

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This decision marks a significant shift in Italy’s approach to birth control. Until now, birth control pills have only been available with a prescription, and many women have struggled to afford the costs associated with obtaining them.

Italy’s birth rate has been declining for years, with the country now experiencing one of the lowest birth rates in the world. However, the decision to make birth control pills free suggests that the government also recognises the importance of providing women with greater reproductive autonomy.

While the decision to make birth control pills free may not immediately result in a significant increase in Italy’s birth rate, it represents a step towards greater gender equality and reproductive freedom.

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“We promise we won’t leave you alone”; PN MP Alex Borg meets Jean Paul Sofia’s mother

"We promise we won't leave you alone"; PN MP Alex Borg meets Jean Paul Sofia's mother
Apr 24 2023 Share

In a recent social media post, Nationalist MP Alex Borg made a promise to the Jean Paul Sofia’s mother Isabelle that justice will be served.

 

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A post shared by Alex Borg (@alexborg)

Borg wrote that he doesn’t like to use sensitive personal cases to make a public case, but is something he couldn’t avoid writing about because “[he] knows what such a loss means.”

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The Gozitan MP wrote that the construction accident victim’s mother only wants that her son didn’t die in vain, but that justice is served and the country moves forward as a result of the public inquiry.

“It is not in the interest of any contractor, developer or work that these tragedies keep occurring. I am sure that whoever is in this sector wants people who are good at their job and whoever is competent keeps doing their job while those who are reckless do not remain in the construction industry.

“Isabelle, I promise you that we won’t leave you alone. We will leave no stone unturned so that, not only do you get justice, but you see that the loss of your son is not just another number in a statistic but something which brings some good to this country”, Borg concluded

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Project Green inaugurates the first Green Open Campus in Malta

Apr 24 2023 Share

Students can now work and study in a new 7,400-square-metre open space through new facilities such as free Wi-Fi and charging points. Project Green launched this new Green Open Campus at Millbrae Grove, next to the MCAST Institute for the Creative Arts, in Mosta.

Ministers Miriam Dalli and Clifton Grima, together with Project Green CEO Steve Ellul, emphasised the importance of open spaces where students can interact and study in a peaceful environment, conducive to their mental wellbeing.

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The Green Open Campus is equipped with charging points for electronic devices and public Wi-Fi, so that students and other visitors can study or work in these green surroundings. Internet connectivity is free and open to all.

Minister for the Environment, Energy and Enterprise Miriam Dalli explained that as part of this project, five MCAST students are collaborating with Project Green to design and decorate the garden’s benches, encouraging this student community to take ownership of this space by embellishing it to their liking.

“Through different initiatives, we are showing how open spaces can have different purposes in our community. They are not only recreational areas but can also be tranquil spaces where one can study, read or work. When we incorporate our natural environment in our daily activities, we improve our quality of life and mental wellbeing,” said Minister Miriam Dalli.

Minister for Education, Sport, Youth, Research and Innovation Clifton Grima highlighted the importance of open spaces and green spaces within an educational environment.

“In all our recent infrastructural projects, we worked to provide the best possible educational environment, whilst incorporating open spaces that contribute to the students’ wellbeing. Even in this educational institution, major infrastructural projects are underway so that we continue to make MCAST a better learning environment for an enhanced educational experience to all students,” said Minister Grima.

Project Green CEO Steve Ellul said that, “This project was carried out through a collaboration with MCAST students. Every open space has a specific theme, and this open space is dedicated to students. In this case, it is a project by youths for youths.”

The Green Open Campus at Millbrae Grove includes some 205 trees, 155 of which were planted through an initiative in collaboration with Puttinu Cares, with each tree representing a €300 donation from the public to this voluntary organisation. This project will serve as a blueprint for other similar projects that are being planned for the near future.

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