Tuesday 13 April 2004

By Natasha Salari, Amy Taylor, Clare Jerrom and Alex

Immigration lawyers to do ethics tests
Immigration lawyers will have to undergo strict new checks in a bid
to weed out unscrupulous solicitors who abuse the system by
representing clients with no reasonable hope of winning asylum in
Role playing exercises will be used in the tests in which
solicitors will be expected to spot bogus asylum seekers and give
Solicitors who fail or who are shown to be unscrupulous or
incompetent will in future be excluded from practising under the
legal aid scheme. The assessments will also include tests in
immigration procedure, law and ethics.
Source:- The Independent Tuesday 13 April page 2
Chaos meets order – the result is

An investigation into the hidden life of a single offender,
uncovering malnutrition, daily thefts to feed drug addiction and
the impotence of punishment.
Source:- The Guardian Tuesday 13 April page 1
Livingstone adviser steps down after arrest
Ken Livingstone’s regeneration adviser has stepped down after
being arrested by police investigating an alleged £3 million
fraud at a training agency.
Kumar Murshid has also relinquished his responsibilities as a board
member of the London Development Agency, the group set up to
oversee the regeneration of the capital.
Last year, Murshid was being investigated by the councillors’
probity body, the National Standards Board for England, for failing
to declare his connections to a businessman at the centre of the
police inquiry. He was also suspended from the Labour party in
Tower Hamlets, east London, with two other councillors.
Following his first formal police interview, he has been bailed to
return for further questioning.
Source:- The Guardian Tuesday 13 April page 5
Civil servants go on strike
A total of 90,000 staff in Jobcentres and benefit offices will walk
out for 48 hours today in a dispute over pay.
They will be joined by 4,500 workers from the prison service in a
separate wage dispute which could disrupt the transfer of
prisoners, and by 1,500 workers from the Office for National
Statistics, who will stage a 24-hour strike.
The strike is the most extensive in the civil service since
Source:- The Guardian Tuesday 13 April page 5
Ministers act to get long-term sick into

Ministers look set to spend up to £800 million a year on a
programme to encourage the sick and disabled back to work.
A pilot scheme involving compulsory work-focused interviews, a
weekly £20 job search allowance, a return-to-work tax credit
and extra advice is to be extended to cover nine per cent of all
incapacity benefit claimants. It will cost £120 million a
Andrew Smith, the work and pensions secretary, is looking to roll
out the scheme nationwide, starting with the areas with the most
Source: The Financial Times Tuesday 13 April page 3
‘Wrongly labelled’ mothers criticise GMC

Mothers who allege they have been incorrectly diagnosed as
suffering from Munchausen’s syndrome by proxy said the General
Medical Council was acting too slowly.
One woman’s case dates back seven years while another said that the
GMC should have acted “years ago”.
The GMC is due to hear eight cases that call into question the
judgement of Professor David Southall, an expert in the diagnosis
of the Munchausen’s syndrome.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph Tuesday 13 April page 4
4 in 5 reject nursing homes
Only a fifth of people would want to be looked after in a nursing
home or hospital if they became seriously ill, according to a new
The study, which involved more than 1,000 adults being questioned
by ICM, found that more than three quarters of people would rather
be looked after at home.
The poll was commissioned by the organisers of carers week that
takes place from June 14-20.
Source: The Daily Telegraph Tuesday 13 April page 8
My, what a busy life you have, grandma
Grandmothers today are likely to be in full time work and want time
for themselves reducing their ability to provide childcare,
according to a new study.
The research, by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical
Medicine’s Centre for Population Studies, found that some
grandparents feel “pressured” to take on more childcare than they
This backs up previous research that warns of an acute childcare
shortage in the future with people having to continue to work into
their 50s and 60s.
Source: The Daily Telegraph Tuesday 13 April page 9
Scottish newspapers
Prisoner transfer plans on hold after escapes

Plans for a private security firm to be used at all Scottish
prisons have been temporarily suspended after a number of prisoners
have been released mistakenly.
The Scottish executive had planned to expand the use of Reliance
Custodial Services, which began escorting prisoners to and from
Scottish courts last week, under a £1 million contract to help
modernise escorting services.
However, following the bungled release of two prisoners, including
a convicted murderer from courts on Thursday, the roll-out of the
scheme has been shelved in order for Reliance to improve its
Source:- The Scotsman Tuesday 13 April
Public against smacking ban
The majority of the public are against a ban on smacking children,
a poll has revealed.
Almost 60 per cent of people said they would oppose making it
illegal for parents to smack their children, and just 35 per cent
said they wanted the law changes according to the Populus
Source:- Evening News Monday 12 April
Sex project is attacked after pregnancy rise
A Lothians health project which provides school pupils with free
condoms and the morning after pill, has been criticised after the
number of teenage pregnancies in the area rose above the national
New figures show that girls aged between 13 and 15 in the Lothians
are 14 per cent more likely to become pregnant than elsewhere in
The Healthy Respect project, funded by £3 million from the
Scottish executive was launched in the Lothians three years ago
when teenagers in the area were three per cent more likely to
become pregnant than elsewhere in Scotland.
Source:- Evening News Monday 12 April
Fight against child suicide begins in nursery

One in 75 children aged between five and 10 years old has attempted
to kill or hurt themselves, according to a families charity.
Parentline Plus said 10 per cent of their callers reported that
their children were having suicidal thoughts, and six per cent said
their child had attempted suicide.
The Scottish executive has provided £266,000 for a programme
to help nursery school children express and deal with their
problems in a bid to prevent them taking such drastic action.
Source:- The Herald Tuesday 13 April
Glasgow is slowly getting better
Standards of health in Glasgow have started to improve, but the
health of the city has still failed to improve at the same rate as
elsewhere in Scotland, according to a report.
Glaswegians living in deprived areas of the city still suffered
significantly lower standards of physical, mental and social health
than more affluent residents, according to the health and wellbeing
survey carried out by the Greater Glasgow Health Board.
While standards of health were improving, a number of serious
issues remained to be tackled.
Source:- The Herald Tuesday 13 April
Highland housing crisis likely to worsen
The homelessness crisis in the Highlands will deepen with demand
for housing continuing to outstrip supply, according to a survey
Although 5,000 properties will be available over the next two years
though new build and people moving within the Highlands, there will
be a demand for 5,900 new homes, according to the report by
consultants DTZ Pieda, commissioned by the council.
Some 5,000 socially rented homes will be required over the next
five years in addition to those provided by the current house
supply and development.
Source:- The Herald Tuesday 13 April
Welsh newspapers
Schools in Wales face airport-style check-ins

Headteachers in Wales are considering introducing airport-style
check-ins to prevent children bringing weapons into school.
Standards of behaviour in schools are now considered to be so poor
that many headteachers are considering taking on security guards
and teachers are calling on the Welsh assembly to help solve the
problem of indiscipline in schools across Wales.
The call for action will be made as one of the largest teachers
unions the NASUWT, meets for its annual conference in Llandudno,
Source:- Western Mail Tuesday 13 April page 1

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