Wednesday 31 March 2004

By Natasha Salari, Amy Taylor, Clare Jerrom and Alex

Schizophrenic ‘tried to kill women’ by
pushing them on to Tube track

A paranoid schizophrenic tried to kill two women by pushing them
onto the electric rails of the London Underground, a court has
Christopher Studders attacked the women while on day release from a
mental hospital, and just hours before the attack magistrates freed
him on bail after he appeared in court for throwing a stone through
a window.
Studders told police that he would commit another offence if he was
released by the court. He picked out the two women after catching a
train from Birmingham and pushed both of them onto the electric
rails at Euston within minutes of each other.
The trial at the Old Bailey continues.
Source:- The Independent Wednesday 31 March page 5
Stricken generation
Young ‘are storing up health problems’
Children in Britain are unhealthier than ever before, experts have
Soaring levels for sexually transmitted diseases, combined with
poor diets and a lack of exercise have produced a generation facing
a public health timebomb. Along with heart disease, diabetes and
cancer linked to obesity, their increased sexual promiscuity
threatens them with infertility and unwanted pregnancies.
The report by the Office for National Statistics found that
sexually-transmitted infections have doubled in the under-20s in
the last decade.
Source:- The Daily Mail Wednesday 31 March page 23
Former Soham teacher facing prison for sex attacks on

A former teacher at Soham Village College has admitted indecently
assaulting two boys.
Robert Howieson has been warned that he faces a prison sentence for
the attacks, which date back 20 years.
It is understood that they came to light during the police
investigation into the murders of Holly Wells and Jessica
At the brief hearing at Cambridge crown court Howieson pleaded
guilty to three counts of indecent assault, one count of committing
an act of gross indecency on a boy and one count of instructing a
boy to commit an act of gross indecency.
He will be sentenced on April 30.
Source:- The Daily Mail Wednesday 31 March page 43
Britain worst in Europe as self-harm

A nationwide inquiry into the number of young people harming
themselves will be undertaken by the Mental Health Foundation and
the Camelot Foundation.
The inquiry will look at the incidence, causes and treatment of
self-harm in those aged  11 to 25.
Britain has the highest rates of recorded self-harm in Europe. It
leads to 150,000 attendances at accident and emergency units a
year. More than half of self-harmers are discharged without
psychiatric assessment.
Source:- The Times Wednesday 31 March page 7
Gap widens between rich and poor
The gap between the very rich and the very poor has widened since
Labour came to power, according to analysts of government tax and
But the Institute for Fiscal Studies said that without increases in
state benefits the gap would be wider.
Source:- The Financial Times Wednesday 31 March page 4
Ministers on rack over migrant row
David Blunkett, the home secretary, has ordered a review of the
accountability of immigration officials to discover how a policy of
waving migration checks in Eastern Europe was allowed to continue
despite civil servants being told 18 months ago.
James Cameron, the British consul in Bucharest, Romania, first
warned the deputy head of the Immigration and Nationality
Department about abuses in August 2002, Tory shadow home secretary
David Davis revealed.
Blunkett admitted that he and his deputy Beverly Hughes were
unaware of the migration scams.
Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 31 March, page 1
Follow-up pledge by Soham inquiry
The Bichard Inquiry is due to be reconvened later this year to
check that its recommendations on changes to the vetting system are
being implemented.
Sir Michael Bichard, who led the inquiry into how Ian Huntley
managed to get a job in a school, said he would report to the home
secretary David Blunkett in May.
Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 31 March, page 5
Justice system fails women, says report
Female offenders, victims and workers are being failed by a “man
made” criminal justice system, according to a new report to be
launched by the Prime Minister’s wife, Cherie Booth QC,
The study, by the Fawcett Society’s commission on women and the
criminal justice system, also found that just 5 per cent of
recorded cases of domestic violence and less than 6 per cent of
reported rapes ending in convictions.
Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 31 March, page 9
Fringe benefits
Village communities for people with learning difficulties should be
closed, argues the disability lobby. But what if the people who
live there are happy?
Source:- Society Guardian Wednesday 31 March page 2
Health’s servant
Llona Kickbush, architect of one of the first international public
health strategies, tells Alison Benjamin why the government’s
approach to fighting obesity will not work
Source:- Society Guardian Wednesday 31 March page 6
Inside job
A joint effort by the Met and housing associations is encouraging
officers to live in the communities they serve.
Source:- Society Guardian Wednesday 31 March, page 7
Bridging the gaps
Redesigning the council tax is better than ditching it according to
a new study
Source:- Society Guardian Wednesday 31 March, page 8
Ready, willing and able
More disabled people would consider a role in public office – if
there was a level playing field
Source:- Society Guardian Wednesday 31 March page 10
Against the grain
John Seddon believes that the government’s reliance on performance
indicators to improve public services is flawed – and he’s being
listened to
Source:- Society Guardian Wednesday 31 March page 14
What else can I do?
Jobs in the civil service are to be cut, and Paul – a tax inspector
– wants to use this opportunity to take his skills elsewhere
Source:- Society Guardian, Wednesday 31 March page 92
Scottish newspapers
£30 wage to keep deprived pupils at school

Financial incentives are to be offered to school-leavers from
deprived backgrounds in a bid to encourage them to continue in
their education, according to enterprise minister Jim
The move came as Scottish executive figures showed a huge gulf in
the educational achievement between children from low income
families and those from more affluent backgrounds.
As many as 400,000 pupils are expected to benefit from the scheme
under which they will be paid as much as £30 a week to stay in
education. The move is expected to cost the executive £49
million over the next four years.
Source:- The Herald Thursday 31 March
Special needs centre protests against bypass
Residents and staff at a centre for people with special needs
formed a human barrier yesterday to prevent surveyors starting work
on plans to drive a new Aberdeen bypass through their
More than 50 staff and residents at the Camphill Community at
Bieldside completely blocked the main entrance to the site as
officials arrived to begin their work on the land.
Source:- The Scotsman Wednesday 31 March
Teenager jailed for five years for forcing boy, 15, over

Three teenagers were detained for five years each yesterday after
it emerged they had surrounded a schoolboy and hounded him off a
The high court in Glasgow heard how Craig Garlinge, Dean McGowan
and Craig Duncan cheered as their victim, who cannot be named, fell
25 feet on to the rocks below.
The three had earlier admitted to striking him repeatedly on the
head and body with golf clubs and a baton, and forcing him to the
edge of the cliff where he fell over to ‘his severe injury,
danger of life and permanent impairment’.
Source:- The Scotsman Wednesday 31 March
Child poverty ‘halved’ in 5 years claims
The number of children living in poverty in Scotland has
halved over the last five years, the Scottish executive claimed
this week.
The numbers had been reduced from 380,000 in 1996-7 to 170,000 last
Communities minister Margaret Curran said the move showed the
executive was on target to end child poverty within a
Source:- Evening News  Tuesday 30 March
‘Failing’ women in suicide surge
Pressure on young women to “have it all” has led to a
surge in young women committing suicide.
Women aged between 15 and 24 in Scotland are almost twice as likely
to take their own loves as they were a decade ago, according to
research by the Samaritans and Childline Scotland.
Experts blame the stress on women of trying to be successful both
in their careers and personal lives.
Source:- Daily Record Wednesday 31 March page 23
Welsh newspapers
Father fractured baby son’s skull

A father has been jailed for four years for fracturing the skull of
his baby son.
David Woods from Abergavenny claimed that his six-week son suffered
a head injury when a mobile phone hit the infant.
Passing sentence the judge at Cardiff crown court found no evidence
of prolonged abuse, and said that what had occurred was a one off
The court was told that both parents lacked social skills, and that
a health visitor had indicated concern over the lack of support for
the couple.
Source:- South Wales Argus Tuesday 30 March page 5
Move to tackle anti-social behaviour
Frontline workers and community leaders from across Wales will take
part in a new initiative to learn how to tackle anti-social
Staff members from local authorities, courts and the police will be
sent on Home Office training as part of the government’s
‘Together’ campaign, that aims to tackle the
Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 30 March page 7

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