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Government Book Talk: Goblins, Ghosts and Witches, Oh My! Happy Halloween, October 2014

Goblins, Ghosts and Witches, Oh My! Happy Halloween, October 2014

by Trudy Hawkins

It’s nearly Halloween, and if you’re thinking about buying candy or pumpkins more than reading Federal government documents, it’s understandable. All the same, it would be regrettable if you missed reading some very relevant Federal government documents before preparing for your Halloween celebration.

(Image courtesy of CPSC: Click on image to enlarge)

Whether you are pulling together a costume for yourself or for kids, you need to make sure the costume is safe to wear. There are a few basic tips to follow when you get ready for trick-or-treating, according to the CPSC’s Halloween Safety: Safety Alert.

  • Decorate costumes with reflective tape
  • Carry bright flashlights
  • Trim or hem long costumes to avoid tripping
  • Choose flame-resistant material
  • Wear good walking shoes
  • Prefer cosmetics over masks when possible
  • Wear masks and headgear that are securely tied and do not obscure the wearer’s vision

The FDA recommends getting professional help to avoid eye damage if you plan to wear decorative contact lenses as part of your costume. The safe costume tips from these documents are good hints for choosing Halloween party gear, as well.

(Image: fda.gov)

The CPSC also recommends that you stick to safe houses, make sure your children walk (and don’t run), and that you check children’s candy before letting them eat any, in case of evidence of tampering (although the history of Halloween candy tampering is spotty). Food safety overall is always a concern at Halloween, and reading the FDA’s Halloween Food Safety Tips for Parents is good preparation for anyone responsible for children attending Halloween parties and celebrations.

Those revelers staying in one location will want to follow guidelines given in Halloween Fires. House parties at Halloween frequently feature candles, bonfires, firepits and the like. The US Fire Academy says Halloween is a night when fires spike, with “a 63 percent increase in the daily occurrence of incendiary or suspicious structure fires for October and November. ….the peak in incendiary and suspicious structure fires on Halloween is slightly lower than the peak on July 5th but higher than New Year’s Day” (p. 12). Many of the fires on Halloween (and the night before Halloween, known as Devil’s Night), are the result of arson, and accidents play a role as well. Be aware and know the exit locations at the party you’re attending. If the party you are holding or attending has includes fire as part of the fun, have fire-extinguishing equipment nearby.

And if you’re planning to stay at home for Halloween, heighten your sense of the holiday mood and read some of the spooky traditions of Halloween in The Fantasy and Folklore of All Hallows, from the Library of Congress’ Folklife Center. You can learn about the origins of Halloween, originally a Celtic festival of the dead called Samhain. Samhain was the biggest holiday of the Celtic year, and served as a new year. The Celts lit bonfires for the dead to create a barrier between them and the living. Supposedly, the bonfires guided the dead back to the netherworld at this time of the year when the Celts believed the border between the dead and the living was thinnest. This brief monograph also covers how the Catholic Church appropriated Samhain from the Celtic natives to become All Hallows, and eventually Hallowe’en (Hallows evening). If you finish reading the piece wanting to know more, the author links a selected bibliography of resources on Halloween and related topics at the end of the text. You get to learn a bit of history and appreciate the author’s poetic text also. He closes the piece by noting that traditional American Halloween activities “…reaffirm… death and its place as a part of life in an exhilarating celebration of a holy and magic evening.”

There are records available for the electronic versions of Halloween Safety: Safety Alert and Halloween Fires in the Catalog of Government Publications. You can find the records for these documents in your local Federal depository library.

How can I access these publications?

In addition to clicking on the links in the article above to find the publications, you may find these publications from the following:

  • Visit a Federal Depository Library: Search for U.S. Government publications in a nearby Federal depository library.
  • Visit a Public Library: Ask your local public librarian about Federal Government books available to check out as well as Federal eBooks that may be available for library patrons to digitally download through the library’s Overdrive subscription.

And to find popular current Federal publications, you may:

  • Shop Online Anytime: You can buy eBooks as well as print publications (with FREE Standard Shipping worldwide) from the U.S. Government Online Bookstore website at http://bookstore.gpo.gov
  • Order by Phone: You may also Order print editions by calling GPO’s  Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.
  • Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.

About the author: Adapted by Trudy Hawkins, Government Book Talk Editor and Senior Marketing and Promotions Specialist for GPO’s Publication and Information Sales Division in Washington, DC, from an original post by Jennifer K. Davis, formerly from GPO’s Library Services & Content Management Division that supports the Federal Depository Libraries Program (FDLP).

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ICE expands reach of smartphone app designed to locate child predators and rescue their victims

ICE expands reach of smartphone app designed to locate child predators and rescue their victims

ICE expands reach of smartphone app designed to locate child predators and rescue their victims
Spanish, Android versions now available

  • ICE expands reach of smartphone app designed to locate child predators and rescue their victims

En Español

WASHINGTON — The first U.S. federal law enforcement app designed to seek the public’s help with fugitive and unknown suspected child predators is now available for Android smartphones, and in Spanish for both Apple and Android versions.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) launched the initial Operation Predator app for Apple products in September 2013. Within 36 hours of its launch, the app helped HSI special agents apprehend a suspect. The latest versions of the app are expected to significantly increase public outreach to help locate child predators and rescue their victims.

“This app is one piece of our commitment to ensuring child predators have absolutely nowhere to hide,” said Acting ICE Director Thomas Winkowski.

The Spanish language versions of the app are built-in to the iOS and Android applications and require no additional downloads. Users who already have the iOS version simply need to update the app or download it fresh from the Apple Store or iTunes.

ICE’s predator app allows users:

  • to receive alerts in their smartphones about wanted predators,
  • to share the information with friends via email and social media tools,
  • to provide information to HSI by calling or submitting an online tip, and
  • to view news about arrests and prosecutions of child predators.

The app also provides additional resources about HSI and its global partners in the fight against child exploitation.
The iOS version of the app can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store and iTunes; the Android version is available on the Google Play store.

The first ICE app released in 2013 received honorable mention for “Best App” in PR News’ 2014 Social Media Icon Awards June 2 in New York City. It was one of eight award finalists. The iOS version of the Predator app has been downloaded more than 93,400 times since its initial launch in 2013.

HSI requests anyone with information about the fugitives profiled in the app to contact the agency in one of two ways, which can both be done through the app:

  • Call the HSI Tip Line, which is staffed 24-hours a day: 866-347-2423 from the United States and Canada, or 802-872-6199 from anywhere in the world, or;
  • Complete an online tip form at www.ice.gov/tips.

Members of the public should not attempt to personally apprehend suspects.

Posted in Current Events, Web/Tech0 Comments

SLA Connections – Oct.7, 2014

SLA Connections – Oct.7, 2014

INDUSTRY NEWS

5 Networking Secrets from a Professional Spy
Fast Company
A private investigator shares his tactics for cracking even the most difficult career connection. Develop strong connections using these strategies.

Read More

Survey Reveals Researchers’ Views on Monographs
Research Information
Reading and publishing monographs remain important to survey respondents.

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The Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Social Media Marketing
Social Media Today
Select the networks best for your purposes, and join the conversation.

Read More

SLA NEWS

SLA’s Virtual Conference is just over a week away! Are you in?
Webinar | October 15-16
This is your chance to participate in the six most-talked-about sessions from SLA 2014 in Vancouver.

Read More

Change Management and Change Implementation in the Knowledge Domain (KMKS105)
Begins online October 14
Do you have tools and an essential knowledge-sharing perspective for implementing change in your organizations?

Read More

SLA PartnerTalk: Are You Finding the Skeletons in Their Closet?
Webinar | October 22 1:00 p.m. EDT
Determining reputational, financial distress, non-compliance and regulatory risks has become an absolute necessity for companies. Join us to discuss the growing demand for diligence research and how information professionals can play a part.

Read More

Copyright Law for Librarians and Info Pros (CCM500)
Begins online October 23
Examine copyright issues that directly relate to the work of special librarians and information professionals.

Read More

Volunteer with SLA!
By volunteering with SLA, you’ll gain valuable knowledge and skills to advance your professional development and career.

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SLA Board of Directors and Bylaws Vote Results
Tom Rink, an instructor at Northeastern State University in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, will lead a group of five SLA members who will join the association’s board of directors in January. Members also approved two changes to the association’s bylaws.

Read More

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CRS Insights: Increased Department of Defense Role in U.S. Ebola Response, CRS Insights (October 1, 2014)

CRS Insights: Increased Department of Defense Role in U.S. Ebola Response, CRS Insights (October 1, 2014)

Increased Department of Defense Role in U.S. Ebola Response, CRS Insights (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

On September 16, 2014, President Obama announced a major increase in the U.S. response to the current Ebola outbreak in West Africa. The Department of Defense (DOD) submitted requests to Congress to make excess Overseas Contingency Operations funds appropriated for FY2014 available to support this effort. The requested funds would be used to provide humanitarian assistance, including:

  • transportation of DOD and non-DOD personnel and supplies;
  • coordination of delivery of supplies from both DOD and non-DOD sources such as isolation units,
  • personnel protective equipment, and medical supplies;
  • construction of 17 planned Ebola treatment units;
  • and, training and education in support of sanitation and mortuary affairs functions to limit the spread of the Ebola outbreak.

Posted in Current Events, Features0 Comments

CSAF discusses Air Force future

Chief of Staff of the Air Force, Gen. Mark A. Welsh, gives the Air Force update at the Air Force Association’s Air & Space Conference.

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September is Suicide Prevention Month


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Power of 1

One click, one call, one text — one life. 

One small act can make a difference in the life of a Veteran or Service member in crisis.

Every year, organizations across the country recognize September as Suicide Prevention Month. This year, the Veterans Crisis Line is asking you to think about the power of one and consider the many ways a single act can give Veterans access to confidential support and resources.

For Veterans going through a difficult time and their loved ones who are concerned about them, a single call, chat, or text can be a critical first step. One conversation with a Veteran about how he or she is doing can open the door to services and support.

Everyone can be the person who makes a difference in a Veteran’s life, and connecting with support doesn’t have to be hard. The Veterans Crisis Line can help.

Free, Confidential Resources

The Veterans Crisis Line is a free, confidential resource that Veterans and their families and friends can access any day, anytime. Trained professionals — some of them Veterans themselves — are ready to listen, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Since launching in 2007, the Veterans Crisis Line has answered more than 1.25 million calls and made more than 39,000 lifesaving rescues.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) counts on grass-roots networks and community organizations to spread the word that support is just a call, click, or text away — because one small act can make the difference.

Identifying Signs of Crisis

VA urges groups and individuals nationwide to stay alert for signs of suicide risk. The first step in preventing suicide is understanding the warning signs; people may show signs of risk before considering harming themselves. Warning signs include:

  • Hopelessness, feeling like there’s no way out
  • Anxiety, agitation, sleeplessness, or mood swings
  • Feeling like there’s no reason to live
  • Rage or anger
  • Engaging in risky activities without thinking
  • Increasing alcohol or drug abuse
  • Withdrawing from family and friends

The presence of the following signs requires immediate attention:

 

  • Thinking about hurting or killing yourself
  • Looking for ways to kill yourself
  • Talking about death, dying or suicide
  • Self-destructive behavior such as drug abuse, weapons, etc.

If you notice these warning signs, tell a Veteran about the Veterans Crisis Line, or make the call yourself. Call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat, or text to 838255 for free, confidential support, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

 

Spread the Word

This Suicide Prevention Month, show how the power of one single act can save a life.

 

Visit VeteransCrisisLine.net/ThePowerof1 to download free Suicide Prevention Month materials, including flyers to print and distribute, digital ads to display on your website, and content to post on social networks or publish in newsletters. Learn how you and your community can work together to prevent suicide.

 

No one can do everything, but everyone can do something. We are all part of the solution, and it starts with one small act.

 

Visit VeteransCrisisLine.net to learn more.

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