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28-Jun-16 13:07. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (20)

Commitato assistenza scuole italiana crisis

COASIT (Commitato assistenza scuole italiana) is facing severe fund cuts from the Italian government. COASIT was established on the 15 of June 1977 with the aim of keeping alive the feeling of belonging to Italy for the Italians living in the UK. Even though the new generations are perfectly integrated and speak English as their mother tongue, knowing the Italian language is an added value to the personal history of every Italian immigrants’ descendent. In this regard, COASIT proved to be an essential point of reference, but things are becoming increasingly difficult. The amount of the financial contribution received from the Italian government for the calendar year 2016 is around half of that requested and budgeted for. Unfortunately no greater amount of funding is to be expected for 2017.

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28-Jun-16 13:02. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (10)

Rome's first female mayor

Virginia Raggi has been elected as Rome's first female mayor, a triumph for the populist Five Star Movement (M5S), the anti-establishment party founded by the comedian Beppe Grillo. M5S candidates have in the past been elected as mayors of a handful of medium-sized towns, but never in big cities. The Renzi's centre-left Democratic Party (PD) defeat in Rome had been expected after widespread criticism of its management of Rome over the past three years, with its mayor forced to resign in 2015 for a scandal over his expenses. It was a landslide victory. Raggi had two-thirds of the votes cast in a run-off contest with Roberto Giachetti of PD.

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25-May-16 16:18. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (15)

Life expectancy for Italians falls

According to the report on the health of Italian people “Osservasalute 2015” Italy has an increasingly ageing population but life expectation dropped for the first time to 80.1 years for men and 84,7 for women. In 2014 life expectation was 80.3 for men and 85 for women. It is just a small change but significant because for the first time it represents a negative trend.

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25-May-16 16:15. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (14)

Prosecco now so popular vines are being stolen

The boom of prosecco in 2015, which saw a production of 355 million bottles, has been unexpectedly threatened by thieves, who have stolen newly-planted vines on the Venetian hills and those of Friuli Venezia-Giulia, where prosecco is produced.

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05-May-16 16:46. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (13)

Around 800 Italians named in Panama Papers Offshore Tax furore

About 800 Italians were named in the Panama Papers, the documents showing the names of companies and thousands of people implicated in secretive offshore tax regimes. This unprecedented leak of 11.5m files from the database of the world’s fourth biggest offshore law firm, Mossack Fonseca involved 143 politicians and Twelve national leaders, politicians' family members and close associates from around the world known to have been using offshore tax havens.

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14-Apr-16 16:58. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (7)

London the biggest Italian City after Rome, Milan, Turin and Naples?

According to the Italian Consulate London has exceeded Buenos Aires becoming the foreign city with the highest number of Italian immigrants in the world. There are at least two hundered and fifty thousand Italians residing in London and in the south of the UK. The area known as “Little Italy” covered north and south of Clerkenwell Road. By 1850 there were over 1,000 Italians in the area. Now there isn't any more an Italian community living in Clerkenwell but Italians are in almost every neighbourhood in London, and Italian immigration in the UK is experiencing an annual growth of around 60%. According to the Consulate the number of Italians in the UK is even higher as for every Italian officially registered there might be some living and working in London without having officially changed their country of residence. Therefore, the London Italians might be double the number of the official figures: that is about half a million people.

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14-Apr-16 16:54. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (24)

Borghi under threat

The existence of Italian “borghi” (small municipalities) is threatened by a new regulation which forces hilltop villages to merge with larger municipalities. According to the mayors of the borghi the measure might cause the perishing of an important part of Italian culture and tradition, considering that rural villages are already menaced by rural poverty, which is causing for many of them to be abandoned, and natural disasters have in some cases made it impossible for the inhabitants to continue living there. From the Piedmont region in the north-west to Puglia in the south-east, 112 mayors of borghi declared war on the proposed legislation that will see all towns with a population of less than 5,000 people merged into larger municipalities.

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14-Apr-16 16:52. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (7)

Be careful how you dress in Salerno - you could be fined

A new anti-vice law in Salerno makes it illegal to look like a prostitute in public. Wearing skimpy skirts, high heels and acting flirtatiously might cause women a £400 fine for “violating urban decorum”. Let's just hope that the boundary between fashion and the exhibition of the female body for commercial purposes will always be easy to judge. Therefore, if you visit Salerno this summer be aware of your outfit!

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24-Mar-16 17:43. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (19)

Cinque Terre to limit tourism

The Cinque Terre, "The Five Lands" are one of the top worldwide tourist destinations, comprised of five villages: Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. The coastline, the five villages, and the surrounding hillsides are all part of the Cinque Terre National Park, UNESCO World Heritage Site. The booming tourist trade has had a great impact on the picturesque coastal towns which have become overcrowded and overwhelmed with tourists. The effect on the scenic Ligurian site is deleterious. About 2.5 million tourists poured into the picturesque park in north-west Italy’s Liguria region last year to visit the five small fishing villages. This beautiful coastal area risks being destroyed by coach parties and cruise ships from which disembark around 650,000 visitors a year, causing unmanageable peaks in numbers at certain times. The great number of visitors are causing damage to centuries-old footpaths that connect the villages along the rugged coastline.

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24-Mar-16 17:42. By Giulia Lombardo | Comments (10)

Kebab threat to Italian Cuisine

Is Kebab threatening Italian cuisine? A recent boom in kebab shops affected some Italian cities spreading concern about protecting Italian cultural and culinary heritage. Verona's Mayor Flavio Tosi, originally member of the far-right Northern League party, introduced a rule prohibiting the opening of any new restaurants offering mostly "ethnic" or “deep-fried food” in the city. The provision was introduced to preserve the decorum of the city and the historic and architectural patrimony of the centre, but also to protect the typical food of the Verona territory.

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