Open Society Foundations Announce 2023 Soros Justice Fellows

New York, Nov. 03, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Open Society Foundations is pleased to announce the 2023 cohort of Soros Justice Fellows, which includes a mix of emerging and established leaders in the field of criminal justice reform, including public educators, artists, lawyers, activists, non-profit innovators, journalists, and filmmakers from across the United States.

“Over the more than a decade that I have worked with the Soros Justice Fellowships, I’ve seen a great number of fellows go on and continue to serve as changemakers in their local communities, and nationally,” said Adam Culbreath, Senior Team Manager at Open Society–U.S. “This is an incredibly unique program to advance justice in the U.S., which supports the notion that change often happens from the ground up.

“Mass incarceration has an enormous and disastrous toll on our communities and represents one of the most glaring injustices of our nation. Today, nearly 10 million Americans—including millions of children—have an immediate family member in jail or prison,” said Christina Voight, program manager at Open Society–U.S. “Each Soros Justice Fellow can play a role in changing this broken system.”

Each fellow will receive stipends ranging from $100,000 to $140,000 for projects lasting between 12 and 18 months to ensure accountability in the U.S. criminal justice system by developing new ways to combat mass incarceration, youth criminalization, surveillance, immigration policies, racial disparities, and police violence. The Soros Justice Fellowships were founded in 1997 and have funded over 400 individuals working to curb mass incarceration and ensure a fair and equitable system of justice.

2023 Soros Justice Fellows

Ashley Rojas will educate movement leaders and cultivate power between the movement for #PoliceFreeSchools and the broader culture of abolitionist organizing efforts to end harm and punishment.

Avalon Betts-Gaston and Lloyd Gaston will research the scope and impact of Illinois Worker Rights amendment on incarcerated workers.

Betty Washingtonwill create OASIS (Our Aging Seniors Incarcerated Society), a project focusing on advocating for the needs of justice-impacted seniors.

Bridgette Simpson will educate the public and create The Protected Class Network, seeking to make justice-impacted people a protected class.

Cheryl Fairbanks will educate native Indigenous people and strengthen concepts of justice through an Indigenous peacemaking lens.

Dominique Branson will educate, document, and destabilize anti-Black ideologies that legitimize pretrial dangerousness predictions and harm Black communities.

Jenani Srijeyanthan will educate and establish a counter-narrative to carceral child sexual abuse prevention approaches through the amplification, technical resourcing, and proliferation of a nationwide prevention movement that does not prioritize policing, criminalization, or surveillance.

Jordan Martinez-Mazurek will educate the public and start local and regional dialogues around fighting the expansion of mass incarceration in the South and in Appalachia.

Mary Baxter will, through an art piece entitled Reimagining Dignity: A Love Letter to Ourselves, educate the public to reimagine racially-charged and gender-oppressive historical events. The piece will reckon with the fallacies of first- and second-wave feminism.

Omisade Burney-Scott will curate a multidisciplinary initiative and educate the public on reproductive justice, radical Black feminism, gender liberation, and pathways to normalizing menopause and aging for the marginalized Black population.

Rachel Gilmer will educate the public and build a united front of survivors and healthcare providers with the goal of creating non-carceral solutions that address the root causes of violence in our communities.

Talila Lewis will educate and create media and art that highlights how ableism informs and drives racism, anti-Blackness, capitalism, and other forms of oppression, violence, and inequity.

Toshio Meronek will educate the public and justice advocates about the expansion of involuntary medical conservatorship in Arkansas, with a focus on its potential human and financial consequences.

Wendi Cooper and Matt Nadel will organize a statewide screening tour of the documentary film CANS Can’t Stand to educate the public about the archaic 1805 Crimes Against Nature by Solicitation statute and the harsh punishments it imposed.

Open Society Foundations
(212) 548-0378

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8972502

Constellation Brands Announces Expiration of Canopy Growth Warrants

VICTOR, N.Y., Nov. 03, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Constellation Brands, Inc. (NYSE: STZ), a leading beverage alcohol company, announced today the expiration of all its warrants (“Warrants”) to purchase common shares (“Common Shares”) of Canopy Growth Corporation (“Canopy”). All 88,472,861 Tranche A warrants held by Constellation’s wholly-owned subsidiary, CBG Holdings LLC (“CBG”), expired as of November 1, 2023. Since the vesting of the remaining aggregate of 51,272,592 Tranche B and Tranche C warrants was conditioned on the exercise, in full, of the Tranche A warrants, the remaining Warrants are not, and will not become, exercisable by CBG. As a result, Constellation is no longer deemed to beneficially own any of the 139,745,453 Common Shares underlying the Warrants.

The 139,745,453 Common Shares underlying the Warrants would have represented an aggregate of approximately 16.9% of the Common Shares outstanding as of September 30, 2023. CBG and another subsidiary of Constellation, Greenstar Canada Investment Limited Partnership, now hold an aggregate of 171,499,258 Common Shares (representing approximately 20.7% of the issued and outstanding Common Shares) and C$100.0 million principal amount of the 4.25% promissory note due 2024 issued by Canopy.

Other than expiry of the Warrants and the terms of the previously disclosed consent agreement and voting support agreement with Canopy referenced in Constellation’s October 25, 2022 press release, Constellation has no other present plans or future intentions that relate to Canopy. Constellation may from time to time dispose of Common Shares or other securities of Canopy or conduct other transactions, in the future, either on the open market or in private transactions, in each case, depending on a number of factors, including general market and economic conditions, other available investment opportunities, regulatory developments, or other factors determined by Constellation. Depending on market conditions, general economic and industry conditions, Canopy’s business and financial condition, and/or other relevant factors, Constellation may develop other plans or intentions in the future.

A copy of the early warning report filed in connection with this press release will be available on Canopy’s profile on SEDAR at or may be obtained by contacting Constellation’s Investor Center at 1-888-922-2150.

This news release contains forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical fact are forward-looking statements. The words “expect,” “intend,” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain such identifying words. These statements may relate to business strategy, future operations, prospects, plans and objectives of management, as well as information concerning expected actions of third parties, including statements related to Constellation’s plans or future intentions that relate to Canopy. All forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth in, or implied by, such forward-looking statements. No assurances can be given that any of the events anticipated by the forward-looking statements will transpire or occur.

The forward-looking statements are based on management’s current expectations and should not be construed in any manner as a guarantee that such actions will in fact occur or will occur on the timetable contemplated hereby. All forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this news release and Constellation undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.

In addition to risks and uncertainties associated with ordinary business operations, the forward-looking statements contained in this news release are subject to other risks and uncertainties, including those disclosed from time-to-time in Constellation’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended February 28, 2023 and its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the fiscal quarter ended August 31, 2023, which could cause actual future performance to differ from current expectations.

Constellation Brands (NYSE: STZ) is a leading international producer and marketer of beer, wine, and spirits with operations in the U.S., Mexico, New Zealand, and Italy. Our mission is to build brands that people love because we believe elevating human connections is Worth Reaching For. It’s worth our dedication, hard work, and calculated risks to anticipate market trends and deliver more for our consumers, shareholders, employees, and industry. This dedication is what has driven us to become one of the fastest-growing, large CPG companies in the U.S. at retail, and it drives our pursuit to deliver what’s next.

Every day, people reach for our high-end, iconic imported beer brands such as those in the Corona brand family like the flagship Corona Extra, Modelo Especial and the flavorful lineup of Modelo Cheladas, Pacifico, and Victoria; our fine wine and craft spirits brands including The Prisoner Wine Company, Robert Mondavi Winery, Casa Noble Tequila, and High West Whiskey; and our premium wine brands such as Kim Crawford and Meiomi.

As an agriculture-based company, we have a long history of operating sustainably and responsibly. Our ESG strategy is embedded into our business and our work focuses on serving as good stewards of the environment, enhancing social equity within our industry and communities, and promoting responsible beverage alcohol consumption. These commitments ground our aspirations beyond driving the bottom line as we work to create a future that is truly Worth Reaching For.

To learn more, visit and follow us on XInstagram, and LinkedIn.

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Carissa Guzski 315-525-7362 /
Joseph Suarez 773-551-4397 /
Snehal Shah 847-385-4940 /
David Paccapaniccia 585-282-7227 /

A downloadable PDF copy of this news release can be found here:

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8971899

Japan’s bullet trains to nix smoking rooms by spring amid health trend

Smoking rooms inside Japan’s shinkansen bullet train cars will completely disappear next spring, as more railway operators adhere to the country’s growing health consciousness and decline in smoking habits.

Central Japan Railway Co., better known as JR Tokai, West Japan Railway Co. and Kyushu Railway Co. announced in mid-October their respective decisions to abolish the smoking rooms from their bullet trains connecting major cities such as Tokyo, Osaka, and Fukuoka.

Vacant spaces created by the abolishment of smoking rooms will be used to store drinking water for passengers in times of emergency, such as when people are trapped inside cars for a long time, the companies said.

JR Tokai had allowed passengers to smoke in their seats in some cars until 2020. Enclosed smoking rooms were installed in the upgraded N700 series train model that was introduced in 2007.

Currently, the Tokaido, Sanyo and Kyushu shinkansen lines have smoking rooms in two or three cars, but all of them will be scrapped.

JR West also plans to eliminate smoking areas at eight stations on the Sanyo Shinkansen Line, including Shin-Kurashiki Station in Okayama Prefecture and Shin-Onomichi Station in Hiroshima Prefecture.

East Japan Railway Co. and Hokkaido Railway Co. have already banned smoking inside their bullet train cars.

The latest move reflects the continuing fall in Japan’s smoking rate, with a 2022 health ministry survey showing the figure for males standing at 25.4 percent, down 3.4 percentage points from 2019, and that for females at 7.7 percent, down 1.1 points.

The Japanese government has also been stepping up efforts to address concerns over secondhand smoke under a revised health promotion law that came into effect in 2020.

Reacting to the announcement from JR Tokai, many on social media seemed to welcome the news, with one post saying it is “a step towards promoting health,” but some expressed disappointment.

Source: Lao News Agency

World food prices fall at softer pace in October

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reported on Friday that global food prices have dropped for a third consecutive month in October, although at a slower pace.

The FAO Food Price Index averaged 120.3 points in October, reflecting a decrease of 0.5 percent from the previous month.

The slight decline in October is attributed to lower price indices for sugar, cereals, vegetable oils, and meat, while the index for dairy products experienced a rebound.

The FAO food price index is a trade-weighted index that tracks international market prices of five major food commodity groups.

The cereal price index went down by 1 percent from the previous month due to lower rice and wheat prices.

The vegetable oil price index decreased for the third month in a row, falling 0.7 percent month on month.

“The marginal fall in the price index chiefly reflected lower world palm oil prices, more than offsetting higher prices of soy, sunflower and rapeseed oils,” read the report.

The meat price index edged down by 0.6 percent, marking the fourth consecutive monthly decline with sluggish import demand leading to a fall in the international prices of pig meat.

The sugar price index slipped 2.2 percent from the previous month, mainly led by a strong pace of production in Brazil.

On the other hand, the index for dairy products rose 2.2 percent from September, shifting from a nine-month of fall.

In October, surges in import demand fueled world milk powder prices hike.

Source: Philippines News Agency

Indonesia imports more rice from Vietnam

Jakarta: The National Logistics Agency of Indonesia (Bulog) recently signed a contract for the import of 1 million tonnes of rice, as part of an additional quota of 1.5 million tonnes allocated from Vietnam, Thailand, Pakistan and Myanmar.

Mokhamad Suyamto, Director of Supply Chain and Public Services at Bulog, said this supplementary import aims to strengthen the government’s rice stockpile until 2024, adding that Bulog will import rice from any country that meets the required standards.

According to him, Bulog currently manages a rice stockpile of 1.45 million tonnes, which will increase to meet distribution needs for the coming year and maintain the stability of domestic rice.

Since early this year, Bulog has distributed a total of 885,000 tonnes of rice to stabilise the market, and 641,000 tonnes of rice as part of the food aid programme for the poor across the country during September-November./.

Source: Vietnam News Agency

NA Chairman meets outstanding household businesses

Hanoi: National Assembly (NA) Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue has affirmed that the Party, State and people always attach importance to the role of entrepreneurs and businesses, including household businesses – the core force in the national industrialisation and modernisation.

At a meeting with representatives from outstanding family businesses nationwide on November 3 in Hanoi, he further said decisions and policies of the Party and State are always for the benefit of people and businesses, and put people and businesses in the centre.

According to the top legislator, the household business community in Vietnam is not only growing rapidly in quantity but also increasingly improving its quality, management capacity and social responsibility. Many of the businesses have grown into famous private economic corporations not only in the country but also in the world.

The NA, its Standing Committee and the NA Chairman himself always support the development of the Vietnamese family business community, Hue said, praising its efforts implementing social responsibilities.

He urged the businesses to pay attention to enhancing cooperation and coordination with each other in order to participate deeper in global value chains.

The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) needs to make more efforts in supporting and promoting the development of household businesses, he said, promising the NA will issue correct and timely decisions, strengthen document review, and supervise law enforcement to ensure an open, transparent, healthy and fair business environment to facilitate businesses’ operation.

Addressing at the meeting, VCCI President Pham Tan Cong said that after 37 years of doi moi (renewal), a strong team of entrepreneurs and businesses was formed with over 900,000 businesses, more than 20,000 cooperatives and some 5 million household businesses, accounting for about 70% of the total Vietnam./.

Source: Vietnam News Agency