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TAPP partners with TOMS Shoes for gun control canvassing event

first_imgTOMS giving coordinator Mo Dugan said that pushing for background checks is the first step in solving gun violence issues. The Trojan Advocates for Political Progress are fighting for gun control legislation with the help of snail mail. Partnering with shoemaker TOMS, student volunteers gathered near Alumni Park Tuesday and urged passersby to sign postcards to send to Congress. “[TOMS] has a history of philanthropy in trying to better the world through business,” Dugan said. “We know that gun violence is an issue that touches a lot of communities … We are starting with universal background checks, because it is something that is supported by a large majority of Americans.” TAPP volunteer Anisha Anisetti said she thinks universal background checks are essential to protect against gun violence. Anisetti said she joined TAPP because the organization provides hands-on volunteering experiences to students who want to be engaged in politics and create change. TOMS, which announced its campaign in December, has collected over 700,000 signed postcards to show support for the bill, H.R. 8. According to Vandenberg, TOMS reached out to TAPP and other university organizations to reach more supporters and achieve their goal of sending one million postcards to Congress. “We know that over 50 Americans die due to some form of gun violence every single day, and any policy that lowers that at any degree will make a great difference that we definitely want to be a part of,” Vandenberg said. “Especially [since] H.R. 8 was just introduced in Congress, we really wanted to make sure there is enough of a solid backing of grassroots effort to get this bill across the finish line.” Dugan said TOMS also wanted to gather support from younger demographics who could have a significant impact on public policy. center_img “Young people are so important in politics in general and especially right now,” Dugan said. “We want to be addressing something that matters to them and also including them in the conversation. [We don’t want to make] it talking at young people, but really engaging them in the conversation and hearing what young people care about and how this issue affects them personally.” TAPP is supporting a measure introduced to Congress earlier this month that would require background checks on all gun sales and most gun transfers, according to President Alec Vanderberg, a junior majoring in public policy. “I think a really great thing about TAPP is that it is super direct involvement,” said Anisetti, a freshman majoring in economics. “It’s not like we donate for other people to go out and do the work; we do the work ourselves, which is really cool.” Vandenberg said TAPP hopes to help make universal background checks a legal requirement. Since December, TOMS has collected over 700,000 postcards in support of gun control legislation. (Julia Rosher/Daily Trojan)last_img read more


Volleyball: Badgers continue reign atop Big Ten standings after pair of wins over Illinois, Northwestern

first_imgFor the first time in Head Coach Kelly Sheffield’s seven years at the University of Wisconsin, the No. 6 UW volleyball team (12-4, 8-0 Big Ten) has won eight straight games. Ironically, the run comes after a 4-4 start to the season — his worst start to a season at Wisconsin. The Badgers took out the No. 17 Illinois Fighting Illini (9-8, 4-4 Big Ten) in a five-set thriller Friday night before sweeping Northwestern (9-11, 0-8 Big Ten) the following night. The Illini ended Wisconsin’s run in the NCAA Tournament last season in the Elite Eight. This time, the Badgers did enough to overcome the Illini in five sets. Wisconsin dominated the first set before dropping consecutive sets to Illinois. They ended the fourth set on a 9–5 run in a set filled with runs from both sides. That set up a final fifth set which the Badgers dominated from start to finish, 15–4. In that fifth set, UW notched nine kills on just 13 swings at a blazing clip of .692 while holding the Illini to a .000 hitting percentage. You read that right: a .000 hitting percentage.Volleyball: Badgers look to continue conference success against top hitters in Big TenThe Wisconsin volleyball team (10-4, 6-0 Big Ten) have ripped through their first six games of Big Ten play and Read…The Badger defense forced 31 hitting errors from the Illini — their highest total of the year. The following day, the Badgers swept Northwestern for the second time in this young Big Ten slate. This time, Wisconsin did so without their two-time All-American middle blocker Dana Rettke. Junior walk-on Nicole Shanahan started in Rettke’s stead and managed five kills, four blocks and an ace. Sheffield said there was no timetable for Rettke’s return.Volleyball: Badgers extend winning streak to six, sit alone atop Big TenFollowing back-to-back wins over top-five opponents, the University of Wisconsin volleyball team (10-4, 6-0 Big Ten) could have taken their Read…While the Badgers won in straight sets, the pesky Wildcats remained in sets late thanks to junior Alana Walker. Walker managed double-digit kills in consecutive games for the first time this season with an impressive .471 hitting percentage against the Badgers. Outside hitter Grace Loberg carried the Badger offense as the only player to have double-digit kills. The trio of Molly Haggerty, Madison Duello and Danielle Hart combined for just 19 kills at a .222 percentage as the Wildcat defense could feature a defensive plan without the fear of Rettke up the middle. The Badgers totaled eight aces against Northwestern — a constant theme in their run throughout the Big Ten so far. Volleyball: Badgers surge with pair of top-5 wins over Penn State, NebraskaIn a few of their early-season losses, the No. 7 University of Wisconsin Badgers volleyball team (8-4, 4-0 Big Ten) Read…Wisconsin leads the Big Ten with 1.89 aces/set in conference play as Izzy Ashburn, Lauren Barnes and Rettke all have double-digit ace totals. Their ability to serve efficiently has helped turn around their season and has improved dramatically from last season. Last year, the Badgers averaged only 1.3 aces/set with a .653 service aces/service errors ratio. This season, UW is averaging 1.75 aces/set with a .875 ratio.Wisconsin will look to extend their winning streak this weekend with matchups against Michigan State Friday and Michigan Sunday.last_img read more


Govt backpedals on VAT reduction promise

first_imgGovernment appears to be dragging its heels on its long-delayed manifesto promise to significantly reduce the rate of the Value Added Tax (VAT) on consumer items – within 100 days of taking office.Finance Minister Winston Jordan, during a press conference on Monday, posited that the Administration had practically done all that was possible in relation to alleviating the burden of VAT and any more changes would require extensive consultations and possible repercussions.Jordan pointed out that Government has already implemented an extension to the zero-rated VAT items in both Budget 2015 and Budget 2016.“There is virtually nothing more left to reduce on,” the Minister declared.Further justifying the Government’s decision to not keep its campaign promise, Jordan also insisted that the Private Sector Commission (PSC) advised against VAT reduction during the budget consultations.The Finance Minister conceded, however, that the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) coalition did indeed promise a significant reduction in the VAT rate, but indicated that there was a slim likelihood of this occurring without any consequences.“This is a commitment that we intend to uphold, but it’s a commitment that we want to be sure when we do it, we won’t have to hastily pull it back … We cannot reduce VAT on existing base, we have to broaden the base to recoup revenues that will be lost…We want to do it in a careful manner so that when we do it, we won’t have to go back and increase it or something,” he explained, though this was never disclosed on the campaign trail.Jordan highlighted that there were various options for reducing VAT, one being a charge on consumer items like electricity and water as a trade-off for an across-the-board reduction.“What we would want to do is have the widest possible consultations ,because some of the options that you have is putting the VAT on some things that could cause trouble and then you will hear, you know, I said it the last time that you have to bring into the mix, things like water that doesn’t attract VAT at the moment, electricity that doesn’t attract VAT at the moment…If you remember in Trinidad and Tobago, when they reduced the rate, they broadened the base …They removed all the exemptions, so even baby food attracted VAT…We have to be prepared for what is doable and what may not be doable,” he stated.Nonetheless, he assured that Cabinet was discussing the matter and any changes to the VAT system were likely to come on stream in 2017.Providing assistance to Guyana in this regard is the International Monetary Fund (IMF). According to the Finance Minister, a mission will be dispatched to Guyana to conduct an assessment of the VAT structure in the country and make recommendations on how to proceed to implement changes.The Tax Reform Committee was established by Government to conduct a similar assessment, but, according to Jordan, the members probably did not perform an adequate task.Nonetheless, he lauded the work done by the Committee and noted that the other recommendations made were before Cabinet for discussions.Finance Minister Winston Jordanlast_img read more