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Council issues invitation to 'discover Formentera in October'

Foto tardor descobreix for a loctubreThe Formentera Council's tourism office issued details today on this autumn's Descobreix Formentera a l'octubre (“Discover Formentera in October”). This time around the initiative takes on particular importance given its inclusion in the Save Posidonia Project festival programme. Every year, the initiative proposes special deals to attract late-season tourists to the island. Details about discounts on ferry tickets, car hire and overnight accommodation, as well as other up-to-the-minute information, can be found at www.formentera.es.

Tourism secretary Alejandra Ferrer cited “persistently pleasant weather, a packed ledger of cultural and sports programming and a laid-back atmosphere” as reasons to consider off-season travel to the island. She drew special attention to the green theme of this year's push—a nod, she said, to 2017's designation as Year of Sustainable Tourism.

Gastro weekends
The last weekend in September (plus October 1) and the second weekend of October, the 6th and 7th, restaurants across the island will offer special gastro spreads at €20 (drinks sold separately). All the info, along with complete meal details, will soon be online at www.formentera.es.

October 6-8 Formentera welcomes Son Estrella Galicia Posidonia, a total experience in gastronomy, music, outdoors and local heritage. Like all Save Posidonia Project-partnered events, money will be collected to safeguard tracts of the seagrass meadows. For all the fine points, visit https://estrellagalicia.es/son/festivales/posidonia/

Save Posidonia Festival
During Save Posidonia Festival, a four-day programme of culture, sport and earth consciousness beginning October 12, specialists will join average citizens in pondering environmental sustainability. Visit www.saveposidoniaproject.org/festival for complete programme information.

October 12-15, Formentera will play host to Formentera ZEN too. Three years old this October, the assortment of seminars and workshops promises a dynamic and spontaneous exploration of both the conventions that underpin our reality and our very perception of it. To get all the details and register, go to www.formenterazen.info.

Amics de Formentera are back with Volta a Peu's yearly autumn feature, a group “walk round the island” held in stages from October 12-15. Find the timetable and signup information at www.amicsdeformentera.cat.

Then there is the town of el Pilar de la Mola's annual festival, October 11 and 12—two days of live music, traditional dance, children's activities and a parade.

October's offering of fitness starts on the 7th with the Formentera Triathlon (www.triatlonformentera.com). October 12 runners make “the climb” to la Mola with the twenty-second Pujada. Two mountain-biking events take place October 27-29: a three-part race (BTT Cicloturista) and the one-day Challenge across la Mola. www.bttformentera.net.

Come out October 21 for the autumn favourite, particularly among German expats on the island, Oktoberfest. The party includes beer tastings, original deutsch eats and musicians performing live music.

Formentera police break up illegal vending operation on Espalmador beach, confiscate material

Foto xiringuitoFormentera local police have brought charges for 15 counts of itinerant vending at Espalmador, Illetes and els Arenals beaches which allegedly occurred between July 31 and August 7.

Based on the allegations, law enforcement forces not only disassembled a stand at Espalmador beach where fruit, refreshments and cocktails were sold, but they also dismantled two supply points, confiscating 165 bottles of water, 80 coconuts, 70 canned soft drinks and beers, 62 dresses and bathing suits, 146 bracelets and 10 rings.

Formentera heads to Brussels for two-day working session

Foto grup visita comissio europeaCiF vice chairwoman Susana Labrador, tourism head Alejandra Ferrer and environment councillor Daisee Aguilera will participate this week in working days hosted by the European Commission for government officials in island communities. The three representatives, in Brussels from July 10-12, are part of a delegation of Balearic officials that includes members of the Govern and the island councils in Mallorca, Menorca and Eivissa, together with representatives from FELIB, the Balearic Islands' federation of governing bodies.

Formentera's council members will resume participation today in a two-day series of meetings on tourism, standardised regulations, European transport, regional and urban policy, trade, strategic investment funds, broadband connections and air traffic regulations.

Tourism chief Alejandra Ferrer drew European officials' attention to the impact of European open circulation on natural resources in the Balearics. Pointing to the case of Formentera, Ferrer described “the need to establish limits in order to become sustainable,” saying European rules could present hurdles for attempts to limit incoming vehicles.

Regulating tourism
Another issue raised in Brussels was the need for EU action on holiday home rentals. Given the growing problem of regulating tourist accommodation, Ferrer said, “Europe's legislation needs to adapt to the realities of every community” and pointed to the importance of “making sure the effort to regulate vacation home rentals doesn't undercut the fundamental right to housing”.

In several other of the day's sessions, hosted by the European Commission and Centre Balears Europa, the Balearic policymakers voiced their concerns on issues like petroleum exploration in the Mediterranean and free trade pacts and their impact on the islands.

Today's programme will conclude with with a fresh set of meetings with the EU representatives and a visit of the hemicycle and other European Parliament buildings.

Presentation of plan to tackle precarious employment on Formentera

Foto presentacio pla lluitaThe Balearic Islands' chief of employment, social economy and health in the workplace presented a plan to combat job insecurity on Formentera this summer. As Isabel Castro introduced the Pla contra la Precarietat en el Treball (“plan to combat precariousness in employment”) in the multipurpose room of the Formentera Council, she was joined by the CiF's third vice-chairwoman and land and tourism secretary, Alejandra Ferrer.

Castro praised the Council for its collaboration on the initiative, which entails accommodation for inspectors, allowing them to conduct nighttime checks. As part of the plan, two extra agents will be dispatched in July and tasked with 80 additional tasks to bolster inspections of temporary and part-time job contracts.

Councillor Ferrer brought to mind the administration's longstanding calls to equip labour inspectors with more latitude to expand checks to cover work in the fields.

According to Castro, the action plan aims to assure quality employment in two ways. First, by pursuing indefinite contracts for employees in positions whose temporary status is deemed unjustified, and second, by homing in on cases where workers are under part-time contract but completing full-time work.

This year's Pla contra la Precarietat is the third so far by the Govern's ministry of labour, trade and industry and the results have already proved the plan's worth. In the two years since it was enacted, 560 local workers have seen their situations improve through reclassified temporary contracts, expanded workdays and new contract creation.

In 2016 alone 361 temporary contracts—more than one in three—were revised into indefinite ones. Thirty-seven workers saw their workday extended.

In two years, the plan has secured improved employment conditions for 9,500 residents in the Balearic Islands.

At the presentation it was also recalled that labour checks are conducted year-round on Formentera, although they are expanded for a part of summer.

Formentera fashion show turns ten, spotlights 'essences of a decade'

Foto presentacio x passarella de modaToday saw the release of the events programme for the tenth annual Formentera Fashion, set to descend upon Es Pujols' plaça d'Europa on July 1 at 10.00pm. Tourism and trade councillor Alejandra Ferrer, together with the event's coordinator Amalia Mora and a staffer, met on the town's seaside promenade with some of the fashion show's 14 contributing designers.

Councillor Ferrer called attention to the importance of this year's passarel·la, or runway show: the event turns ten this year, just like the Council. The special occasion will be marked by particular emphasis on the Save Posidonia Project, which, according to organisers, reflects an attempt to broaden the green initiative's reach to include the attendees of Formentera Fashion.

In addition to playing host to designs from 14 local creators (12 of whom produce clothing; the remaining two are jewellers), a section for children's fashion returns after meeting with success last year. Es Pujols' plaça d'Europa was once again chosen as the backdrop while distinguished local TV presenter Nuria Arias will be back to host.

Amalia Mora said the tagline—“Essències d'una Dècada” (Essences of a Decade)—reflects the look back this year's designers will take at the event's ten years of history. The fashion gala was first hatched to as a vehicle to promote the work of local garment vendors and designers. Participants will include Te Doy la Luna (children), Eva Cardona Niños, Macramé, Ishvara, Eva Cardona, B-7& Acho, Kavra Formentera, Alena Vedere, Elena Hurtado (OBI)& Lorenzo Pepe, Jane Ibiza&Pilar Mena, Ur-Joies (jewellery), Majoral (jewellery) and—the 2017 show's special guest designer—Michele Crocitto.

Fourteen professional models from Deva Models d'Eivissa will walk the catwalk, including two top models, Veronica Blume and Almudena Fernandez. They will sport jewellery, wedding dresses, cocktail dresses, high-level avant-guard creations inspired in nature, the sea and the colours of Formentera. According to Mora, the through-line will be “collections that take both tourists' and islanders' breath away”.

As always, the Formentera Council wishes to thank the administration's staff for its dedication throughout the hosting of Formentera Fashion. It also would like to thank Carbonicas Tur, Proauto rent-a-car, Hotel Blanco, Por ti Formentera by Laura hair salon and Àfrica.

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