A daily summary of social care stories from the main newspapers

By Clare Jerrom.

Climbie care worker to be charged for inquiry

A social worker who ignored an order to give evidence at the
inquiry into Victoria Climbie’s death is to be

Carole Baptiste resisted a series of demands to answer for her
handling of the eight-year-old’s case. She failed to answer a
summons to attend the inquiry yesterday.

An infuriated Lord Laming, who is leading the inquiry, began
legal proceedings and said the social worker had exhausted his

If convicted, Baptiste faces fines up to £1,000 and up to
six months in prison.

Members of the public inquiry have made repeated attempts to
persuade Baptiste to give evidence. She was a manager of the
investigation and assessment team at Haringey social services in
north London at the time of Victoria’s death.

The eight-year-old died at the hands of her great aunt Marie
Therese Kouao and her lover Carl Manning with 128 separate injuries
on her body.

A private detective was employed to serve Baptiste the summons,
and it emerged she had previously refused to give evidence at the
internal inquiry.

Laming said: “She is a very important witness. Her behaviour is,
to put it mildly, entirely unacceptable. She has exhausted my
patience and I suspect that of others. Without reservation of any
kind I instruct that the solicitor now lay information before a
magistrates’ court so that criminal proceedings can be

Baptiste was supervising Lisa Arthurworrey, who was an
inexperienced social worker, in her dealings with Victoria’s

Arthurworrey told the inquiry last month that Baptiste was
rarely available to give advice and often missed case meetings. She
added that her manager would often talk about her relationship with
God and being a Black woman instead of child protection.

Source:- The Times Tuesday 4 December page 8

Council tax to rise 10 per cent to pay for elderly

Council taxpayers in England could face increases in charges of
up to 10 per cent after today’s announcement on local
government funding.

The soaring cost of care for older people is being blamed for
the rise.

Stephen Byers, transport, local government and the regions
secretary, will announce government grants to English local
authorities today.

The figure, although expected to be higher than the £44
billion last year, may still be too little to provide the extra
£1 billion needed for nursing care of older people.

Sandy Bruce-Lockhart, Conservative leader of Kent council, said:
“The government has tried to improve standards, but not put in the
extra money. Council taxes will have to rise because social care is

Source:- The Times Tuesday 4 December page 6

500 now sleeping rough

There are now just over 500 people sleeping rough in Britain
following a fall of 71 per cent in the last three years, it was
announced yesterday.

The government’s rough sleeper’s unit will now become part
of the homelessness directorate aimed at providing those taken off
the street with training, employment and accommodation.

Tony Blair said the government had beaten its target six months
early, but that more needed to be done to provide training and

Source:- The Times Tuesday 4 December page 9

NHS to pay for private health treatment

The government will announce today a plan to fund Bupa to run a
free standing surgical unit next to a public hospital.

Alan Milburn will reveal an agreement that will allow the
private sector to run and manage an acute diagnostic and treatment
centre for NHS patients, which will be paid for by the

The move is consistent with the “concordat” between the NHS and
Britain’s small private sector as announced under the NHS

The health secretary’s statement should result in 5,000
extra operations a year on the undisclosed hospital site.

Source:- The Guardian Tuesday 4 December page 1






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