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Global Leaders Agree to Full Phase-Out of Fluorescent Lighting


This week at the Minamata Convention on Mercury Fifth Conference of Parties (COP5), delegates from 147 countries agreed to phase out florescent lighting globally and completely by 2027. Fluorescent lamps contain mercury, a potent neurotoxin. The decision will accelerate global adoption of LEDs by effectively putting an end to the fluorescent lighting industry, with the limited exception of special uses like some transport applications. LEDs are on average 40% more energy efficient than fluorescents. COP5 decisions primarily addressed linear fluorescent lamps (LFLs), the largest contributor to lighting-based mercury pollution in the world, ubiquitously found in offices, stores, and other commercial settings and institutions. LFLs are also a major source of energy-related CO2 emissions. The decisions close the loop on continued efforts to stop the manufacture, export and import of mercury in lighting worldwide. Global markets are going all LED. The benefits of a full transition to LEDs by 2027 are massive. The appliance efficiency expert group CLASP estimates the move will have the following benefits (cumulatively from the phase out dates to 2050): Avoid 2.7 gigatonnes of CO2 emissions Eliminate 158 tonnes of mercury pollution, both from the light bulbs themselves and from avoided mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants Save US$1.13 trillion on electricity bills “The Africa region, in deep collaboration with colleagues around the world, are proud to have made momentous progress to Make Mercury History,” said David Kapindula, Minamata COP3 President and Africa Region expert. “The decision to phase out mercury-based fluorescent lighting will have unprecedented benefits in combatting the triple planetary crisis of climate change, air pollution, and biodiversity loss. Such actions would not have been possible without the spirit of cooperation demonstrated by Parties at this Minamata COP5.” This week’s move complements decisions at Minamata COP4 in March 2022 to phase out compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), lamps commonly found in homes, by 2025. Proposals to phase out fluorescents at COP4 and COP5 were introduced by delegates from Africa. “I was pleased to see a high spirit of collaboration amongst the Parties as related to matters concerning mercury lighting,” said Itsuki Kuroda, co-chair for COP5 proceedings and the Delegate from Japan. “Parties were able to align on phase out dates for all fluorescent categories, representing a positive example of successful diplomacy on the world stage.” Fluorescent lighting contains mercury, a toxic chemical that threatens the health of people and the planet. Most fluorescents are improperly disposed of into general waste streams; broken bulbs pollute land and water, and increase health risks in vulnerable populations like children, pregnant people, and waste workers. “The mercury-free lighting community came together to achieve a significant feat in the fight against mercury added products. Putting a stop to all lighting-related mercury pollution will have wide reaching benefits for our communities, ecosystems, and for the generations to come. We congratulate the governments and are pleased to join them in saying ‘Farewell to Fluorescents,’” said Elena Lymberidi-Settimo, International Co-coordinator of the Zero Mercury Working Group. LED lamps pay for themselves quickly in energy savings. Recent global analysis indicates that payback periods for LED alternatives to LFLs are improving, from an average of 6.3 months in 2022 to 2.4 months in 2023. LED sales and manufacturing rates are increasing year on year while fluorescent manufacture and sales are plummeting. Apart from the specialized blue-chip components, LEDs can be manufactured and assembled anywhere, unlike fluorescents, which are only produced by a few companies in a handful of countries. Advocates claim that the transition to all LED will drive local economic growth, especially in low- and middle- income countries, due to the affordability and availability of the lamps and increased clean energy jobs. ### CLASP improves the energy and environmental performance of the appliances & equipment we use every day, accelerating our transition to a more sustainable world. The Clean Lighting Coalition is a global partnership to capture the health and environmental benefits of eliminating mercury-based lighting. Contact Details Alexia Ross +1 339-222-4311 Company Website

November 03, 2023 01:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Visa, Inc. Chairman Al Kelly Asked to Revoke Black Lives Matter Endorsement


The following letter was sent today by Peter Flaherty, Chairman of the National Legal and Policy Center, to Alfred F. Kelly, Jr., Executive Chairman of Visa, Inc.: The Visa Inc. website still carries your July 15, 2020, endorsement of Black Lives Matter (BLM). We ask that it be taken down. We raised the issue of your BLM support at the 2023 Visa, Inc. annual meeting, but you ignored us. In the wake of the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel, BLM has shown its true colors. There is more than one entity that calls itself BLM, but the movement has made it clear where it stands. Please be aware: The Chicago chapter of BLM Grassroots tweeted imagery of a hang glider with a Palestinian flag, captioned “I Stand With Palestine.” Hang gliders were used by Hamas terrorists in the murder and hostage taking of innocent civilians attending the Tribe of Nova music festival. The BLM Grassroots national organization issued a “Statement in Solidarity With the Palestinian People” against the backdrop of the Palestinian flag. It read in part, “When a people have been subject (sic) to decades of apartheid and unimaginable violence, their resistance must not be condemned, but understood as a desperate act of self-defense." BLM Global Network Foundation (BLMGNF) co-founder Patrice Cullors, called for an “end of the imperialist project known as Israel” at Harvard Law School in 2015. Additionally, as detailed in a series of Complaints we filed with the Internal Revenue Service, BLMGNF is plagued by high living and self-dealing by its past and present leadership. Cullors, a self-proclaimed Marxist, resigned after we exposed the fact that she owned four homes. In the past, you have been eager to involve Visa, Inc. in controversial issues that have nothing to do with the company’s core business, but you have not yet condemned the Hamas attack or antisemitism. We ask that you do so without further delay. ### Contact Details National Legal and Policy Center Dan Rene +1 202-329-8357 Company Website

October 30, 2023 07:40 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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How to Prevent Your Home from Becoming the Haunted House on the Block


With Halloween just around the corner, homeowners everywhere are going out of their way to make their homes look scary and ‘haunted’ on purpose. But when we put off routine fixes around the house – think servicing a noisy HVAC system or replacing light fixtures – our homes can actually start to feel haunted year-round. Recently, Home Care Expert at Thumbtack, David Steckel, participated in a nationwide satellite media tour to discuss the elements that make our homes feel haunted, easy fixes and resources that can help. A video accompanying this announcement is available at: Recently, Thumbtack surveyed over 1,000 millennials to get a sense of what exactly is ‘haunting’ their homes. A resounding 40% of people surveyed believe they’ve lived in a haunted home at some point and 20% revealed having consulted paranormal experts. So, what elements make homes start to feel haunted? Based on the survey findings, the most common elements according to millennials are: ● Doors closing unexpectedly (47%): Hiring a door repair specialist can cost between $63-$475 depending on what door type you need fixed, materials, and more. ● Noises coming from inside the walls (38%): Hiring an exterminator can likely help you get rid of unwanted tenants and costs between $100-$140 on average. ● Flickering lights (34%): Hiring an electrician can run between $150-$200 depending on the scope and timing of the project. ● Creaky floors or stairs (28%): Hiring a flooring specialist can cost between $300-$500 on the lower end and $4,963-$7,101 on the high end. While being the spookiest house on the block might be the goal for Halloween, it is easy to prevent living in a haunted home the rest of the year. According to millennials, the easiest ways to make a home less spooky is to give it a refresh – with a fresh coat of paint or a deep clean (25%), fixing light fixtures and faulty electrical wiring (23%), and keeping up with proactive maintenance (20%). The bottom line is: Homes don’t start out haunted. They can simply feel that way because homeowners are in the dark about what’s really going on, and don’t know where to begin or who to call. Thumbtack provides homeowners with personalized guidance on what to do and when to do it as well as who to hire, so your home stays in good shape all year long. Visit to learn more — or download the app to get rid of your “ghosts” once and for all. About David Steckel David Steckel is a Home Expert at Thumbtack, with more than 15 years of experience as a general contractor in the homebuilding industry. David provides homeowners with the expertise they need to better plan, budget, and complete home projects from small fixes to routine maintenance and larger improvements. Prior to his role at Thumbtack, David founded Setter, a subscription-based service that handled home maintenance and repairs. David is based in Toronto, Canada. Contact Details YourUpdateTV +1 212-736-2727

October 25, 2023 04:05 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Shareholder Urges Microsoft to Boot Jeffrey Epstein Pal from Board of Directors


In a letter to the lead independent director for Microsoft Corporation, National Legal and Policy Center has asked for the removal of billionaire Reid Hoffman from the company’s board of directors, due to his hyper-partisan political activities and his connections to the late convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, whose private island Hoffman visited in 2014. NLPC owns stock in Microsoft and is also sponsoring a shareholder proposal at this year’s annual meeting, which will be held on December 7, 2023. LinkedIn, which was co-founded by Hoffman, was acquired by Microsoft in December 2016. He joined Microsoft’s board in March 2017. As NLPC’s Paul Chesser wrote in his letter to the company’s top independent director, Sandra Peterson, Hoffman has shown poor discernment in his associations, poor judgment in his political and social actions, and utter disregard for Microsoft’s reputation and shareholder value. “Reid Hoffman’s wealth and arrogance have clearly gone to his head and he appears to think he doesn’t have to be accountable to anyone,” said Chesser, who is director of NLPC’s Corporate Integrity Project (CIP). “Whether its visiting ‘Pedophile Isle’ with Jeffrey Epstein, or calling the likely 2024 Republican presidential nominee ‘The Disease President,’ or simply advising aspiring entrepreneurs to ‘ignore your customers,’ Hoffman obviously would rather satiate his sensual impulses than properly oversee the fiduciary responsibilities of a major technology company,” said Luke Perlot, associate director and chief researcher for the CIP. In the heavily footnoted letter to Microsoft, NLPC pointed out three major reasons that make Hoffman unsuitable for the board: his close association with Epstein; his unrestrained, hyper-partisan political urges; and his hypocritical views regarding “civic participation” and his own company’s censorship practices. Excerpts from the letter: According to Axios, Mr. Hoffman and Mr. Epstein both aggressively fundraised for the [MIT Media Lab], with Mr. Hoffman also inviting Mr. Epstein to join him at an August 2015 dinner in Silicon Valley that included tech entrepreneurs Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg and Peter Thiel. In an email to Mr. Thiel, according to the Wall Street Journal, “Hoffman wrote that Epstein was a ‘mostly fun, very interesting guy, you may find him perverse, but very smart on biology, computation, macro econ.’”… Mr. Hoffman’s extremely poor judgment leaves many unanswered questions. Recognizing Mr. Epstein as “perverse,” how did Mr. Hoffman justify ongoing collaboration with the convicted pedophile, who maintained his own luxury island to traffic underage girls to fulfill the sexual desires of himself and his associates? How could a highly educated, savvy and instinctive tech billionaire agree to visit such a place, with such a person, with such a detestable reputation, unless it was intentional, showing utter disregard for his own image and that of the businesses and organizations with which he is identified? … MotiveAI, another firm credited with “with backing from billionaire LinkedIn chairman Reid Hoffman,” ran ads through associated limited liability companies that featured offensive content and disinformation…. Facebook pages with MotiveAI associations made sexist comments about former Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard and Republican megadonor Rebekah Mercer. One such page called Rep. Gabbard a “C.W.I.L.F.,” which stands for a “Congresswoman I’d like to f---”… Mr. Hoffman…could easily advocate for [LinkedIn] to remain open to all for reasoned political debate, but there is no evidence that he does. In fact, his own history indicates that he encourages such snubs. As a self-styled expert on venture capital-funded startups…Mr. Hoffman recommends one counterintuitive business practice for an alleged path to success: “Ignore your customers.” Is this an image that Microsoft wishes to project? NLPC called for Peterson to ask for Hoffman’s resignation, and if he refuses to do so, then to seek his removal. Hoffman is listed as a nominee for re-election to the board on the company’s proxy statement. “Reid Hoffman has been very successful in business but he has shown very poor judgment,” said Peter Flaherty, chairman of NLPC. “Wealth should not be an exemption from decent behavior. Microsoft will be a better company when Hoffman leaves the board.” Founded in 1991, NLPC promotes ethics in public life and government accountability through research, investigation, education, and legal action. ### For more information or to schedule an interview with Paul Chesser, contact Dan Rene at 202-329-8357 or Please visit Contact Details National Legal and Policy Center Dan Rene +1 202-329-8357 Company Website

October 24, 2023 10:15 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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First Ever Global Campaign to Decriminalise Suicide Worldwide

LifeLine International

Today, LifeLine International launched Decriminalise Suicide Worldwide, a new campaign advocating for legal changes in countries where suicide is either a crime or the law is unclear. Former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard joined Lifeline International to give a keynote speech calling for communities around the world to unite against outdated and punitive laws exacerbating the isolation and stigma associated with suicide. According to new analysis from LifeLine International, suicide and attempted suicide is a crime in 25 countries, while the legality of both is unclear in a further 27 countries. Laws criminalising suicide are generally associated with higher suicide rates because they are ineffective deterrents and inhibit people in suicidal distress from seeking help. The analysis, completed with input from the International Bar Association, is the latest comprehensive audit of laws criminalising suicide undertaken. A population of 1.2 billion people live in the 52 countries where suicide is either a crime or laws are uncertain. The campaign advocates for legislative changes that will also help achieve the UN's Sustainable Development goal to decrease global suicide rates by 30% by 2030. Where we seek to change laws, LifeLine International will also work to either establish or enhance crisis line services. Decriminalisation has gathered positive momentum in the last five years, with legal reform completed in Ghana, Malaysia, Pakistan, India and Singapore. LifeLine International has identified Malawi and Nigeria as initial focus countries for decriminalisation campaign support. In the 27 countries with unclear legal frameworks, LifeLine International will engage with governments and civil society organisations to seek clarity and request the removal of barriers preventing people from seeking help. The ambiguity comes from a lack of consistency in the respective legal systems. The official campaign launch at Australia House in London was attended by diplomats, representatives of major mental health organisations, service providers, charities, supporters and the media. Former Australian Prime Minister, the Honourable Julia Gillard AC, who gave the keynote speech at the event, said: “The power of coalition and influence has the potential to drive significant change in addressing suicide as a global public health crisis. Coming together to support decriminalising suicide holds the promise of saving hundreds of thousands of lives." LifeLine International President, Justin Chase, said: "Every day, more than 1,900 people lose their lives to suicide, and approximately 77% of these tragic events occur in low- and middle-income countries. Suicide is a global public health challenge, but LifeLine International's new campaign is committed to creating a world where individuals facing suicidal thoughts can seek help without fear of legal repercussions. Decriminalisation addresses a significant barrier to deploying crisis support services and tackling the social stigmas that discourage help-seeking.” As part of the campaign, two digital platforms were launched today: – A social change campaign platform serving as the public face of the campaign; and, – A bespoke knowledge platform for experts, NGOs, civil society, and crisis support services to facilitate the formation of national decriminalisation. LifeLine CEO Thilini Perera said: "Through our knowledge platform, we are bridging the gap between countries to advocate for change. LifeLine International's commitment to using innovative technology and galvanising support will accelerate decriminalisation campaigns, allowing people living in countries where suicide remains a crime to receive the help they deserve. We are proud to open source our knowledge to support network participants. Our platform will enable us to track progress and move closer to a world where suicide is decriminalised, stigma is reduced, and help-seeking is both accessible and encouraged." About LifeLine International: LifeLine International is an Australian-registered international civil society organisation representing 27 Members, in 23 separate countries. Our Members collectively operate more than 200 suicide prevention and crisis support services across the world. Our shared mission is to create a world where quality suicide prevention support is available, accepted and encouraged. Our goal is to ensure that the life-saving work of our Members is fully recognised, valued and supported. We focus on supporting the expansion of community-based crisis support services, wholly operated by our Members and beyond. We believe that crisis support services must be accessible and widely promoted in all communities, regardless of location, cultural practice or legal frameworks. We fundamentally believe that crisis helplines play a critical role in the overall continuum of care for suicide prevention. Our ultimate beneficiaries are help seekers: individuals in distress, despair and at risk of suicide. Notes to Editors: Click here for the Campaign Brief Click here for Decriminalise Suicide Worldwide Factsheet For further information or interview requests, please contact Contact Details LifeLine International Jenny Wright +44 7786 567525 Company Website

October 23, 2023 03:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Evidence of Discrepancies, Misrepresentations, and Noncompliance with FCC Rules Calls FOX's Truthfulness with Regulator into Question

Media and Democracy Project

The Media and Democracy Project (MAD) has submitted a comprehensive response to the filing by Fox Television Stations (FTS), urging the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to compel FOX to turn over key discovery documents from recent litigation. MAD reiterated its belief that obtaining these documents is crucial for the FCC to evaluate the numerous character violations relevant to the broadcast license renewal application for the FOX Corp-owned television station FOX 29 Philadelphia (WTXF). The filing focused on dismantling FOX’s attempt to shield the questionable conduct of FOX executives and hosts from thorough examination by the FCC. FOX's opposition to releasing these materials is an attempt to hinder the Commission from conducting a full and transparent assessment of the company's deliberate and willful promotion of false election narratives, which had dire consequences for the country. FOX has labeled the request a "fishing expedition," disregarding the fact that the motion for documents seeks only to enhance the record for evaluating WTXF's license application. It is a routine practice that is common during an FCC license review. FOX argues that its alleged misconduct falls outside the scope of FCC character policy, therefore, the request for documents is irrelevant to its renewal application. This fails to appreciate the gravity of the actions taken by senior FOX leadership following the 2020 election that shock the conscience and are well within the scope of the Commission. FOX's assertion that granting evidence from shareholder lawsuits contradicts Delaware law is baseless. This law pertains specifically to shareholder requests and does not apply to a license renewal proceeding where the FCC makes the request. MAD's motion also requested information related to contracts between WTXF and political advertisers, as mandated by law to be filed with the FCC and made public. Rather than acknowledging any wrongdoing, FOX has chosen to double down on arguments made before the Commission that it did nothing wrong despite ample evidence of discrepancies, misrepresentations, and noncompliance to the contrary. This continues the pattern of mistruths noted by the judge in the Dominion case and demonstrates that FOX’s penchant for lies does not stop with its regulator. Access to nonpublic discovery material would further support what publicly available information has already established—that FOX and Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch lack the character required of public broadcast license trustees. Given that these documents have already been categorized, organized, and provided in various lawsuits, the FCC could request the same documents be provided to the petitioners with ease. A copy of MAD’s response to FTS can be found here. The Media and Democracy Project: MAD is a non-partisan, all-volunteer, grassroots organization focused on strengthening a free and independent media in the public interest. MAD aims to improve our national discourse so that American voters can engage in informed decision-making. As part of that goal, MAD has an interest in the responsibility of journalists and media to report fully, accurately, and fairly on the electoral process and the outcome of elections. Additional information is available at www.MediaAndDemocracyProject.Org. Contact Details Aaron Alberico +1 202-744-0786 Company Website

October 23, 2023 11:30 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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NLPC Files Ethics Complaint Against Senator Robert Menendez Seeking His Expulsion


The National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC) filed an ethics complaint with the Senate Ethics Committee against Senator Robert Menendez. The complaint requests that the Committee investigate his criminal conduct and recommend that the Senate vote to expel him from office. NLPC’s complaint cites the recent superseding indictment against Senator Menendez, his wife, and three New Jersey businessmen, who “willfully and knowingly combined, conspired, confederated, and agreed together and with each other” to have Senator Menendez act as an agent of the Government of Egypt and Egyptian officials. In return for this and other favors to the businessmen, he and his wife received bribes and other illegal gratuities of over $480,000 in cash — much of it stuffed into envelopes and hidden in clothing and closets in his home — along with gold bars, a luxury Mercedes Benz, and personal items. “Menendez’s excuse for having $480,000 in cash stuffed in his clothes and closet because he was saving it from his paycheck for a rainy day is laughable and insults the intelligence of his constituents, especially when his co-defendant’s fingerprints were found on some of the envelopes,” said Paul Kamenar, NLPC’s counsel who filed the complaint. “We checked his financial disclosure forms and if anything, his Senate bank account increased by a sizable amount,” Kamenar added. The complaint notes that the Ethics Committee is mandated under its rules to open a preliminary inquiry and cannot nor should not wait until the criminal case is resolved as the Committee previously indicated that it would do. “The Ethics Committee should do its job and not wait until the criminal case is completed,” said Kamenar. “The Ethics Committee should do the Senate a favor and recommend that Senator Menendez be expelled from the Senate as his colleagues are calling on him to resign,’ Kamenar added. NLPC’s complaint notes that Senator Menendez was previously tried for bribery in 2018 for receiving gifts and luxury travel from his benefactor Dr. Salomon Melgen. NLPC was instrumental in that case of uncovering Senator Menendez’s lobbying efforts to fund a multi-million-dollar port security project in the Dominican Republic in which Dr. Melgen had a financial interest. “While his case ended in a hung jury, Menendez did not learn his lesson and continued to abuse his office and act corruptly,” said Peter Flaherty, NLPC Chairman. “Senator Menendez is not only a career politician but a career criminal,” Flaherty added. ### Founded in 1991, NLPC promotes ethics in public life and government accountability through research, investigation, education and legal action. Please visit Contact Details National Legal and Policy Center Dan Rene +1 202-329-8357 Company Website

October 20, 2023 12:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time

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Media and FCC Veterans Join the Media and Democracy Project in FCC Meeting Calling for a Hearing on Petition to Deny Fox Affiliate Broadcast License

Media and Democracy Project

The Media and Democracy Project (MAD) announced it met with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Media Bureau staff about its petition challenging the broadcast license renewal application for FOX Corp-owned television station FOX 29 Philadelphia (WTXF). The meeting focused on the basis for MAD's Petition to Deny and urged the FCC to grant a motion to compel FOX to turn over key relevant documents that have already been produced to plaintiffs in numerous lawsuits, including the settled Dominion case. This action is aimed at ensuring that the Commission has access to all the necessary facts as they evaluate the specific character and conduct issues relevant to Fox 29's renewal. MAD’s Executive Director Milo Vassallo was joined at the FCC by former FCC Chairman Alfred Sikes, former FOX lobbyist Preston Padden, former FOX and News Corp. outside legal counsel Bill Reyner and former Weekly Standard Editor William Kristol. They discussed how the lies about the 2020 election that aired on Fox News, authorized at the highest levels of FOX’s corporate structure to retain FOX’s viewer base and reverse failing ratings, represent egregious misconduct that shocks the conscience and severely violates the FCC policy on licensee character qualifications. The group also underscored the need for the Commission to designate WTXF’s broadcast license renewal for a hearing. "Never in the history of the Commission has the agency been confronted with a license renewal applicant whose parent company was found by a court of law to have repeatedly presented false news," said Preston Padden. “We were proud to bring a highly esteemed group before the Media Bureau to make our case and we hope that the Commission recognizes that all of these Petitioners/Commenters are unpaid volunteers acting out of principle and commitment.” A copy of MAD’s Ex Parte filing summarizing the meeting can be found here. A high resolution copy of the photo is available here. Photo Caption: Left to Right - David Goodfriend, Counsel/Advisor; William Kristol, Longtime Editor of Conservative Murdoch Magazine The Weekly Standard; Art Belendiuk; Counsel To Media And Democracy Project; Milo Vassallo, M.D./Ph.D. Executive Director of the non-partisan Media and Democracy Project; Preston Padden, Former Fox Executive and Murdoch Lead Lobbyist; Bill Reyner, Longtime Lead Regulatory and Commercial Outside Counsel To Murdoch/Fox; Al Sikes, Former Republican Chairman Of The FCC and Former Owner Of Radio Station Group The Media and Democracy Project: MAD is a non-partisan, all-volunteer, grassroots organization focused on strengthening a free and independent media in the public interest. MAD aims to improve our national discourse so that American voters can engage in informed decision-making. As part of that goal, MAD has an interest in the responsibility of journalists and media to report fully, accurately, and fairly on the electoral process and the outcome of elections. Additional information is available at www.MediaAndDemocracyProject.Org. Contact Details Raynor Ave. Aaron Alberico +1 202-744-0786 Company Website

October 20, 2023 09:30 AM Eastern Daylight Time

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GLOBAL ENGINEER GIRLS ACHIEVES MILESTONE IN KOSOVO TOWARDS GENDER EQUALITY IN STEM Prishtine, October 18, 2023 - Global Engineer Girls (GEG), the international philanthropic initiative aiming to improve women’s representation in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), proudly announces the graduation of 20 young women from its flagship program in Kosovo. Implemented by Limak Group in partnership with the UNDP in Kosovo, GEG Kosovo empowers young women and girls enrolled in STEM education and provides them with opportunities to gain crucial experience in a male-dominated industry. The project aims to inspire the next generation of female engineers, and highlight the strides made towards gender equality in STEM education. The graduation ceremony marked the successful completion of a year-long journey of scholarships, training, mentorship, and internships, all provided by GEG Kosovo. The ceremony also highlighted the projects undertaken by the girls during their participation in the program, including digital communication, effective team management, personal brand-building, communication, and interpersonal skills. These projects serve as compelling evidence that extending opportunities to girls is a vital way to prepare them for successful futures in the STEM world. President of Kosovo, Vjosa Osmani, in her speech, mentioned, "We must ensure that all our bright minds have equal opportunities to pursue the education of their choice. We need these equal minds in order to address the critical issues of our time, such as climate change and AI. We cannot afford to exclude half of our population from the most pressing challenges of our era. It is imperative to collaborate and work together to achieve equality more swiftly. These young girls serve as clear examples of the potential within our youth. It is our duty to ensure that young women and girls feel empowered to pursue their dreams, regardless of the path they choose. They must harbour no fear or hesitation in stating, 'I want it, and I will make it.' Every girl holds a guaranteed place in our future. I encourage each girl to carry forward the legacy of GEG.” Chair of Limak Holding and Limak Foundation, Ebru Özdemir, said: “It's truly an important milestone for GEG and our vision at Limak. I’m thrilled to see the progress of the GEG Kosovo participants over the past year, and I am certain they all have a bright future ahead of them. Engineering isn’t a man’s world anymore, so it is our responsibility to continue to create opportunities for young women to succeed in STEM by supporting them in their studies and careers.” GEG Kosovo extends its gratitude to its supporters, mentors, parents, and volunteers, who have enabled the success of this program. Their collective efforts have empowered young girls to overcome challenges, build confidence, and unlock their full potential. Moving forward, GEG Kosovo remains committed to expanding and enhancing its programs to reach even more young girls, empowering them to break down barriers and become leaders in STEM fields. About Global Engineer Girls Global Engineer Girls (GEG) is an international philanthropic initiative that aims to inspire the next generation of female engineers. The inception of GEG was driven by Limak Group of Companies' culture and its Chairperson's, Ebru Özdemir's, deep personal commitment to improving women's representation in STEM. GEG provides girls and women with education, mentorship and career opportunities in Turkey, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Kuwait and beyond. GEG's predecessor, the Engineer Girls of Turkey (EGT), was launched in Turkey in 2015. Since its inception in 2015, the GEG university programme has benefited 710 young women by providing support for female students enrolled in chemical, civil, computer, electrical- electronic, environmental, industrial, and mechanical engineering departments in Turkish universities. This support has included funded scholarships and mentoring by hundreds of professional volunteers, as well as online training programs, soft skills and English language courses, internships, and employment opportunities at Limak's companies and partner companies. About Global Engineer Girls Kosovo Global Engineer Girls (GEG) Kosovo was established in 2022, in partnership with Limak Kosovo and United Nations Development Programme in Kosovo. GEG Kosovo currently operates in three public universities, covering bachelor and master's programs in engineering. UNIVERSITY OF PRISHTINA "HASAN PRISHTINA", UNIVERSITY OF APPLIED SCIENCES IN FERIZAJ, UNIVERSITY OF MITROVICA "ISA BOLETINI"œ Note to editors: High-resolution images from the graduation ceremony are available in the attachment. Contact Details Highgate Advisory Ltd. Iulia Trandafir +44 7516 787557

October 19, 2023 09:59 AM Central Daylight Time

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