By Dialogo April 27, 2009 Mexico’s government is trying to stem the spread of a deadly strain of swine flu as a new work week begins by urging people to stay home Monday if they have any symptoms of the virus believed to have killed more than 100 people. Officials have already closed schools in three states and canceled hundreds of public events. But as the number of suspected cases and deaths rose again Sunday — and millions returning to work Monday — they looked to other measures to control the outbreak. Labor Secretary Javier Lozano Alarcon said employers should isolate anyone showing up for work with fever, cough, sore throat or other signs of the flu. Fear of the disease caused most residents of Mexico’s capital to hunker down at home on Sunday. The cardinal said Mass in a shuttered cathedral. Football teams played to empty stadiums. A television variety show filled studio-audience seats with cardboard cutouts bearing broad smiles on their faces. For the first time in 300 years, the cathedral in Mexico City’s main plaza pulled an icon of the Lord of Health from storage, and worshippers placed it on the principal altar. The Rev. Cuauhtemoc Islas said it would remain there until the medical emergency is over, Mexico’s government news agency Notimex reported. But the bad news kept coming. Health Secretary Jose Angel Cordova said late Sunday the number of suspected swine flu cases in Mexico had climbed to 1,614, including 103 deaths. Authorities were trying to confirm how many new cases were caused by the virus, which has been confirmed or suspected in at least a half-dozen other countries and has caused the U.S. to declare a health emergency. But even as Mexican officials urged those with flu symptoms to seek medical help, some complained of being turned away. In Toluca, a city west of the capital, one family said health authorities refused to treat a relative Sunday who had full-blown flu symptoms and could barely stand. The man, 31-year-old truck driver Elias Camacho, was even ordered out of a government ambulance, his father-in-law told The Associated Press. Paramedics complained that Camacho — who had a fever, was coughing and had body aches — was contagious, Jorge Martinez Cruz said. Family members took him by taxi to a public hospital, but a doctor there denied Camacho was sick and told the trio to leave, Martinez said. “The government told us that if we have these symptoms, we should go to these places, but look how they treat us,” Martinez said. Camacho was finally admitted to the hospital — and placed in an area marked “restricted” — after a doctor at a private clinic notified state health authorities, Martinez said. Jose Isaac Cepeda, who has had fever, diarrhea and joint pains since Friday, said he was turned away from two hospitals — the first because he isn’t registered in the public health system, and the second “because they say they’re too busy.” The streets of the capital were largely deserted Sunday. The city canceled its weekly cycling day, in which major boulevards are closed to cars. The city’s two main chains of movie theaters announced they were closing temporarily. Restaurants and bars were empty. “We normally get 200 diners over the course of the day,” said waiter Eduardo Garcia, wearing a surgical mask as he presided over empty tables of an Italianni’s restaurant in the Zona Rosa neighborhood. “Today’s pretty bad. Nobody’s coming out of their houses.”
Month: December 2020
A Spanish court has ordered members of the police to travel to Colombia to interrogate nine former members of the FARC guerrilla group, to whom they want to show recent photos of members of the armed separatist group ETA to see whether they can identify them, court sources said Wednesday. Spanish National High Court Judge Eloy Velasco ordered the trip to Colombia on 21 September, although the news only became public on Wednesday. Former guerrillas from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) included in the Colombian government’s rehabilitation plan have identified several ETA members in the past, judicial sources specified. The Colombian government announced its decision to collaborate with the Spanish courts and even said that it will share any information found on the computers of the FARC’s top military commander, Víctor Julio Suárez, alias El Mono Jojoy, who died in a jungle bombardment two weeks ago. “Whatever can help to do justice in this area, we’re more than willing, and that’s what we’ll do,” Colombian Foreign Minister María Angela Holguín said in Bogotá. The instructing magistrate investigating the alleged relationship between the two armed groups, in which relationship he says the Venezuelan government has cooperated, has requested his fellow High Court judge Ismael Moreno to send him the testimony given by two alleged members of the Basque separatist group ETA. The ETA members, according to a document made public this week, acknowledged receiving training in Venezuela. As part of the same judicial proceedings, Judge Velasco will take statements on 15 November from two former Venezuelan public prosecutors who have information on ETA’s activity in the Caribbean country, at the request of the private prosecution brought by the Association of Victims of Terrorism and the Democratic Platform of Venezuelans in Spain, the sources said. Need for Investigation The open investigations being pursued by the National High Court into the FARC and ETA and possible Venezuelan connivance have caused tension in relations between Spain and Hugo Chávez’s administration on two occasions in recent months. The controversy reemerged on Monday when a ruling by Judge Moreno, in which he ordered Juan Carlos Besance y Xabier Atristain held on charges of illegal possession of arms and explosives and membership in a terrorist organization, cited previous investigations and statements supporting the claim that the two were trained in Venezuelan territory after having received courses in France. On Wednesday, Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero dismissed the possibility that the government of Venezuela or of any other country was cooperating with ETA, but he affirmed that the statements by the alleged ETA members need to be investigated, for which he requested the Caribbean country’s collaboration. “Of course, in the government’s view, the statements (…) by the alleged ETA members provide sufficient evidence to require an investigation and a response from the Venezuelan government,” Zapatero said during an interview with Tele 5. “We are convinced that no government in the world, of course, is giving shelter to what is a terrorist gang (…), the issue is that no terrorist should feel more or less free, more or less secure in any country, and this demands on our part cooperation with all governments, also of course with the Venezuelan government,” he added. In March Judge Velasco indicated in a court document that the Venezuelan government cooperated in facilitating meetings between ETA and the FARC and the exchange of guerrilla-warfare techniques or information related to a possible attack in Spain on high-ranking Colombian officials, such as then-president Alvaro Uribe. According to the document, in 2007 ETA members were escorted by a member of the Venezuelan military to a jungle location where they received a course in handling explosives from members of the FARC. Following the judicial ruling, both countries reaffirmed their commitment to the fight against terrorism in a joint statement, in which they declared the controversy over. Zapatero affirmed that he has raised the subject with President Chávez on several occasions during the last two years. “I can assure you that if this is going on, it will have limited scope in any event, because ETA’s capabilities are very limited (…), these capabilities will be eradicated in Venezuela,” he affirmed. ETA and the FARC are on the European Union’s list of terrorist organizations, and the two groups have maintained “coordinated relations” throughout their history for “some of their illicit objectives,” according to the March ruling. By Dialogo October 08, 2010
By Dialogo March 30, 2012 Chile’s first Military satellite, launched in December on a Russian Soyuz rocket, is now operational, its European builder Astrium announced on March 27. The FASat Charlie satellite, Latin America’s most powerful, was “accepted” by the Chilean Armed Forces, Astrium announced in a statement. The 20 Chilean engineers who are operating the satellite were trained at Astrium’s center in Toulouse, in southwestern France. The satellite was launched, with five others, from the Kuru center, in French Guiana, on December 16, 2011. Astrium, a European space leader and the third-ranking space firm in the world, is a subsidiary of the European aviation and defense giant EADS. “Astrium is proud of having developed and delivered Ibero-America’s most powerful observation satellite to the Chilean authorities, and moreover, in optimal condition,” Astrium indicated in a statement released in Spanish.
Two people were killed and 17 injured in the Colombian capital May 15, when a bomb exploded in what President Juan Manuel Santos said was an assassination attempt against a former interior minister. “I’ve just learned that an attempt was made on the life of Mr. Fernando Londoño. He was in his armored car,” said Santos in a speech from the presidential palace. “Fortunately, Dr Londoño is in stable condition in the hospital,” the Colombian leader said, adding Londoño’s driver and a police guard were among the dead. Bogota’s mayor Gustavo Petro said via Twitter that “one suspect has been arrested” and there is surveillance video of the crime scene. “The entire city should stay alert,” he added in his message, as the Red Cross said 17 people had been injured. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, which occurred on Bogota’s busy Calle 74 and Avenida Caracas, a bustling intersection in the northwest of the city filled with foot traffic from businesses and students from nearby universities. Witnesses described an ear-shattering explosion followed by scenes of carnage. “It was horrible,” one witness told AFP, who said the grisly disaster scene included a body torn in half by the force of the blast lying in the street. The witness said Londoño’s bodyguards brandished their firearms as they removed the injured minister from the shattered vehicle and rushed him to a nearby hospital. Londoño served in the cabinet of former president Alvaro Uribe, a hardliner who governed from 2002 to 2010. Santos, leader of Colombia’s successor government, vowed not to be cowed by the assault. “I want to condemn this attack in the strongest terms,” said Santos. “We do not know what the purpose of it was, but be absolutely certain that the government is not going to allow itself to be derailed by these terrorist acts.” The attack came shortly after the police announced they had dismantled a car-bomb that leftist FARC rebels planned to use in an attack on the Bogota police headquarters. Suspicion for the attack immediately fell upon the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, which for decades has carried out an ongoing armed conflict with the Bogota government. By Dialogo May 16, 2012
“We envision a holistic overhaul of dismounted infantry and increasing the reach and protection of vital assets at sea,” Tousley said. “We want to push the envelope in all dimensions for air systems. We want to expand space operations while helping them become a routine, accessible and cost-effective as air operations.” DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office (TTO) creates advanced platforms, weapons and space systems to help preserve U.S. Military superiority through overwhelming technological advantage. However, constantly evolving technologies, shifting warfighter mission requirements and limited budgets mean TTO must always seek new ways to leverage innovation while fulfilling its duties. By Dialogo March 28, 2013 To help address these challenges, TTO is planning by April 15, 2013 to release a Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) calling for Innovative Systems for Military Missions. Innovative systems often incorporate emerging advanced technologies and must show significant promise to revolutionize U.S. Military capabilities, significantly augment mission effectiveness or substantially reduce system costs and inefficiencies. Ground Systems: Soldier/Squad Technologies, Combat Vehicles and Tactical Operations in Urban Environments Maritime Systems: Surface and Subsurface Technologies Air Systems: Novel Air Vehicles Space Systems: Spacecraft Technologies, Space Situational Awareness, Systems for Access and Hypersonic Airframes “We’re looking for potentially huge leaps forward from the existing state of the art, not incremental improvements,” said TTO Director Brad Tousley. “We want to work with innovative risk-takers, including nontraditional and traditional, large and small contractors, and research/academic institutions. For qualified systems developers who have always wanted to work with DARPA, this is the opportunity to learn how.” TTO is particularly interested in engaging contributors with experience in systems engineering, manned-unmanned teaming and autonomous systems. Such proposals should address rapid experimentation, iteration and demonstration of prototypes in real-world situations. TTO seeks contributors in the following focus areas: The DARPA Special Notice document announcing the Proposers’ Day and describing the specific capabilities sought is available at http://go.usa.gov/2vee. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Drug traffickers damage the environment In addition to disrupting the lives of indigenous people, drug traffickers are destroying vast swathes of irreplaceable rainforests in Honduras and elsewhere in Central America, according to a report published in the January, 2014 issue of the U.S.-based magazine Science. Deforestation rates in eastern Honduras had actually been on a slight decline until 2007. That’s when Mexican organized crime groups such as Los Zetas and the Sinaloa Cartel significantly increased their operations in the area. They began moving into the area in response to increased pressure by Mexican security forces. The rate of forest loss in Honduras increased dramatically with the surge in organized crime. Between 2007 and 2011, forest loss in environmentally sensitive areas in eastern Honduras increased nine-fold, from approximately 20 square kilometers in 2007 to approximately 180 square kilometers in 2011, according to the Science report. The problem became so severe that in 2011 the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) designated Honduras’ Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve, one of the few remaining tropical rainforests in Central America, as a “World Heritage in Danger” zone. The Biosphere Reserve is home to a number of threatened or rare animal species, including giant anteaters, jaguars, ocelots and macaws. Not all of the deforestation is attributable to drug traffickers. Non-drug related commercial logging, agribusiness and other factors also are major causes of deforestation in Honduras. But in a vicious cycle, drug traffickers often “launder” their drug money by investing it in logging and agribusiness operations that also cause deforestation. “The vast profits that traffickers earn from moving drugs appear to create powerful new incentives for (drug traffickers) themselves to convert forest to agriculture (usually pasture or oil palm plantations),” the Science report states. “Buying and ‘improving’ remote land (by clearing it) allows dollars to be untraceably converted into private assets, while simultaneously legitimizing a (drug trafficker’s) presence at the frontier.” AND WHY? IF YOU KNOW EXACTLY WHAT’S GOING ON…BOMB THEM AND END IT. THEY KILL BECAUSE WE RESPECT THEIR LIVES AND ALL THEY ARE SOWING IS VIOLENCE, ORGANIZED CRIMES AND SOCIAL CHAOS AND ON TOP OF IT, ILLICIT PROFITEERING… BOMBARD THE ALREADY KNOWN AREAS…. That’s where the armed forces and the soldiers need to be. But noooo, the police in Honduras is bought off, one should know that it’s Honduras and not Mexico. From the coastal region of the Brus Laguna and Juan Francisco Bulnes municipality alone one hundred families have emigrated since 2013 to other parts of the country and in Nicaragua. Including myself and my family we left our assets, given the same criminal activities and terrorist acts, there is no investigation made, they all go unpunished by the corresponding authorities, such as the special prosecutor’s office for ethnic groups, DINAFROH, Masta and the Public Ministry In August and September 2014 they have already coerced the Misquitos and Pech indigenous people to abandon their lands so they can buy it within the cultural zone and the center of the Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve in order to plant the African palm, and they are already cleaning the area to plant the palms. The leaders of the Indigenous Organizations that represent us have partnered up with the organized crime. You should investigate them and enforce the law on them. There are no reports on the proper petitions and that’s because they are bribed through acts of corruption and have collected taxes for the landing of small planes that were bringing drugs into La Mosquita. By Dialogo September 03, 2014 Transnational drug trafficking organizations in Honduras – such as the Sinaloa Cartel and Los Zetas – are displacing indigenous tribal groups and destroying critical forests and wildlife habitats. Drug traffickers are forcibly taking over tribal lands and clear-cutting virgin forest to make clandestine landing strips for drug flights, according to authorities. Such activities have deprived local indigenous tribes of food and disrupted their traditional lifestyles. Leaders of the Miskito, Pech and Tawahka tribes said there were at least 39 operational drug trafficking airstrips on their lands in eastern Honduras. Drug traffickers land two or three flights a week on some of the clandestine air strips, according to a report in insightcrime.org. Organized crime operatives used armed guards and wire fences to keep indigenous people away from the areas around the landing strips. This prevents members of the Miskito, Pech and Tawahka tribes from hunting, fishing in area rivers, and tending to their farm crops, which include rice, sweet manioc, and yams. Some tribal people flee organized crime violence Drug traffickers are also putting the indigenous population at risk by engaging in violent gun battles with organized crime rivals. Indigenous tribes are often caught in the middle of such violence, and many have left their homes to avoid the bloodshed. For example, in the Mosquitia region of northeastern Honduras, five indigenous tribes have partially or totally abandoned their land, according to press reports. The 2,000 members of the Tawahka community are considering moving women, children and the elderly out of their homes in Honduras to relative safety in neighboring Nicaragua. Drug traffickers are operating in remote areas, where tribal communities live, said Eugenio Sosa, a security analyst at the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH). “Violence, organized crime, illegal mining and other criminal activities are destroying these indigenous communities,” Sosa said. “The organized crime syndicates are wiping out the cultural, economic, and natural resources of these peoples.” Cooperation between tribal communities and state security forces is crucial in the fight against drug traffickers, the security analyst said. Criminal organizations operating in tribal areas are also recruiting young people by promising large amounts of cash to engage in criminal activities. “Indigenous communities need to collaborate more with the state to avoid being victims of these criminal predators,” he said.
South Dade Senior High wins mock trial crown May 15, 2003 Regular News “Objection your Honor!”Those words rang through the Orange County Courthouse recently, but they were not the words of experienced trial attorneys, but those of high school students participating in the 2003 Florida High School Mock Trial Competition state finals.South Dade Senior High School from Dade County took the first place Lady of Justice trophy this year, defeating Tallahassee’s Lincoln High School in the finals. South Dade will now represent Florida at the National High School Mock Trial Championships, which will be held in New Orleans this month.The teams argued the fictional criminal case State of New Columbia v. Haley Brunetti, which asked the question whether the defendant, Haley Brunett, was responsible for the death of Jackie Potomski, who was shot and killed with Haley’s hunting rifle by Haley’s cousin, Nicki Blanc.“Teams consisting of six to eight students studied the case for five months in preparation for the competition,” said Kevin Haman, of the Florida Law Related Education Association – which sponsors the event – adding that 18 high schools and more than 170 students from across the state participated in the program.Pinellas Park High School finished third followed by Fletcher High School from Duval County, and William R. Boone High School from Orange County.More than 250 volunteers from Florida’s legal community also donated approximately 1,000 service hours to the exercise in justice, serving as judges and coaches in the mock trial circuit and state competitions. At the end of each round the judges gave critiques and helpful advice to the students.Bar President Tod Aronovitz, who addressed the students during the opening ceremonies, said the mock trial program teaches students about the legal system and the vital role the third branch of government plays in our society.“This exercise in justice helps students learn to respect the rule of law and understand the processes in place in our democracy for resolving disputes,” said Annette Boyd Pitts, FLREA’s executive director.Pitts said students who participate in the program not only gain a greater knowledge of the legal system, but they learn practical skills that will help them throughout their lives. South Dade Senior High wins mock trial crown
Regier accepts PILS’ challenge Associate Editor A Public Interest Law Section luncheon at The Florida Bar’s Midyear Meeting in Miami ended in an extraordinary exchange between lawyers who advocate for children and Jerry Regier, secretary of the Department of Children and Families.Regier, in the job for a year and a half, challenged lawyers to help him carry out adoptions. In turn, lawyers challenged Regier to help them get past animosities and allow them to represent children. In the end, both children’s advocates and the head of the huge, troubled social services agency agreed to work together as partners.“I’ve often thought that if you can get past a wall of lawyers, whose job it is to protect their boss and their department, that you can sometimes reach a resolution when you have a one-on-one discussion,” said Deborah Schroth, of Florida Legal Services in Jacksonville and a former chair of PILS.“So I am very hopeful that indeed we will be able to work out a mechanism, especially for children who don’t have access to the courts. Because frequently, foster children are not brought into judicial review hearings, and older children don’t have guardians ad litem. I am hoping that now the secretary and I can work out a mechanism so that we can each meet one another’s challenge.”The impromptu dealmaking began when Regier was wrapping up his prepared speech. He sent out a challenge to Florida’s lawyers to help him with a new adoption initiative called “No Place Like Home.” Right now, he said, there are 4,600 children in Florida whose parents have already had their parental rights terminated. Of those 4,600, 2,500 children have a family identified to care for them, a foster family, or relative willing to give the child a permanent home. But the other 2,100 children, Regier said, do not.“That’s something we need to work on together,” Regier told those gathered at the luncheon. “One of the things I thought about is to challenge this group, to challenge you to think about, maybe even as a group or a section of The Florida Bar, to take up the goal and say, ‘I’m going to help in some way to get one child adopted.’ What would happen if you took a goal of 500 children this year, to find 500 attorneys who would get involved in some manner to provide pro bono work in terms of the legal needs. . . and see if you can find an adoption opportunity for that child?“Permanency is really where we need to move children in our system. We can build a more responsive system,” Regier said. “I believe with all my heart that we have the ability to do that.. . . Anybody can tear down. When you talk about a system like we have in Florida, it’s easy to criticize and complain, because anybody can tear down, and you can do it very quickly. But it takes real commitment to build. What I am looking for, and what I hope, is that we have the partnerships. Even this opportunity to share with you indicates to me that you really do want to have that partnership, and I look forward to working with you.”He asked the lawyers to e-mail him at email@example.com and tell him what they thought.But he didn’t have to wait for an e-mail in an inbox. When he opened the floor to questions, Schroth jumped in with a challenge for Regier.“There has been in the past, and I don’t know if it’s still the policy of the department, but foster children cannot have attorneys if they want attorneys, only if the department (DCF) wants them to have attorneys,” Schroth said. “If it’s no longer the policy of the department, it is the culture of the department.”Schroth went on to describe a situation where a young man “was dumped out of foster care three months before his 18th birthday.” When his caseworker referred him to Schroth for legal representation, she said, the caseworker was “excoriated for having given him my name.. . and she was terminated from her job.“I would like to challenge you,” Schroth told Regier, as the other luncheon participants listened eagerly. “I will take a case for adoption for every child you will allow to have access to an attorney for legal issues of that child.”Regier responded: “I’ll take your challenge also. First of all, I would say that this falls into the category of what I said earlier. The department is not perfect. Because I do not condone if what you said is exactly what happened. I have had a number of situations where foster parents, sometimes children themselves, have appealed certain decisions and certain actions. And I certainly don’t condone anything retaliatory.”The second challenge for Regier came from Robin Rosenberg, pro bono counsel for Holland & Knight in St. Petersburg.“I want to thank you for reaching out your hand in partnership and offer another area where I think we, as a community of lawyers, really need to work with the department on the legal needs of children,” Rosenberg said.“Many of us here, including myself, have litigated large class actions against the Department of Children and Families, and many of us individually have represented children. Right now, the system is in a legal conundrum.“The department has represented in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals that the federal courts don’t need to be involved, because juvenile judges have the authority to handle the individual legal rights of children. So cases in the 11th Circuit have been dismissed. Judges, in our state courts, have made efforts to address the legal rights of children and have been opposed by department attorneys, who say, ‘Judge, separation of powers says you can’t tell me what to do. You can’t tell me to move this child to that location.’ We’ve got a separation of powers crisis. We want to serve children, and we want to do it in the best way that will get the best result for them. We’re at a conundrum. I would like the department to commit to working with children’s advocates to see if we can reach a legal solution so that we know what is the proper forum and how we can advocate for kids in a way that the department can be our opponent on the merits of the issue but not on the location on where the matter will be heard.“We’d like to put together a summit in the summer. If we can get the department to participate, I think we can all reach a conclusion and be able to work forward from there. Would you participate with us?” Rosenberg asked.And Regier responded: “Again, I will participate in anything that brings people together to talk about differences. I think I have shown that over the last year and a half. I’ve got my general counsel here. If we start getting into the legal parts of it, I would probably defer to her. But she knows, and we’ve had a conversation, that I very strongly have said the department will not take an adversarial role just because they have in the past, just because there is some personal agenda or whatever. It has to be on the merits. We’ve had that discussion several times about several sticky cases that we face. We are committed to what’s best for kids. Granted, I think there are some points where we will have differences when we get to the table. But getting to the table is never an issue with me.”After the luncheon ended, Schroth and Rosenberg said they were heartened by Regier’s assurances.“I am very excited that the secretary took up the challenge to do a summit on the separation of powers,” Rosenberg said. “It’s an issue that been troubling advocates ever since the decision in Bonnie L came out, and a number of state court decisions, where the judges have thrown up their hands and said, ‘We can’t do anything about this anymore, even though we want to.’ Something has to be worked out. And if we can work it out cooperatively, through a summit, that’s great. If we can’t, we’ll have to figure out another way. But something has to give, because the kids need representation.” February 1, 2004 Jan Pudlow Associate Editor Regular News Regier accepts PILS’ challenge
April 1, 2005 Regular News Nominations sought for Tradition of Excellence Award Nomination are now being accepted for the General Practice, Solo & Small Firm Section’s Tradition of Excellence Award, which honors a lawyer for exceptional contributions to, or an exemplary career in, general, solo, or small firm practice. It is presented by the section at a reception and award ceremony held in conjunction with the Bar’s Annual Meeting June 24 in Orlando. The honoree receives an expense paid trip to the reception and an impressive memento of the achievement. This award is reserved for those who have practiced in Florida for at least 10 years. For more information, send an e-mail to Carol Kirkland, section administrator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or by fax (850) 561-5825. The deadline for receipt of nominations is May 13. Nominations sought for Tradition of Excellence Award
June 1, 2006 Regular News Elder Law Section promotes advance directives, helpline Elder Law Section promotes advance directives, helpline In recognition of Elder Law Month and Older American’s Month, the Elder Law Section, along with Department of Elder Affairs Secretary Carole Green and the Statewide Public Guardianship Office, in May hosted advance directives workshops throughout the state. Highlighted was the importance of educating the public about advance directives and elder law issues, as well as the existence of the statewide Senior Legal Helpline.“Talking with your family and loved ones about your end-of-life wishes can be a difficult task to undertake, so it is important that we help educate the public about how to have that conversation,” Green said. “Through these workshops, participants will gain a better understanding of what advance directives are and the choices we all have in terms of end-of-life care.”Designed for elders, individuals with special needs, case managers, and caregivers, attendees received resources on advance directives and related topics, as well as tips on how to talk to family and loved ones about end-of-life care decisions. DOEA’s advance directives publication, Making Choices , also was available to workshop participants. Available in print copy and through the department’s Web site at http://elderaffairs.state.fl.us, Making Choices provides information on end-of-life choices, how to create an advance directive, and resources to contact with questions regarding advance directive decisions.The workshops also shed light on local, regional, and state legal resources for elders and their caregivers, such as the statewide Senior Legal Helpline — (888) 895-7873 — a toll-free telephone line and referral service, where elders can address legal questions regarding housing, health care, family law, employment, advance directives, and other issues.