Social worker suspended by General Social Care Council
Wiltshire children’s social worker Gloria Eaton is the first person to be suspended by the GSCC. Or at least she is the first to be suspended and named. The GSCC says she has been suspended from the professional register for six months and will be unable to practise or to use the title social worker during that time. The move is preparatory to a full conduct hearing that could result in her being struck off. Wiltshire Council has confirmed she left the authority last July. It is understood the case centres on concerns about Eaton’s general competence, rather than any specific issue of malpractice.
Source:- SocietyGuardian. Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 2

Mental health crisis means patients are sent home
Thousands of patients are being detained in expensive private psychiatric hospitals because the move to community care has left a massive shortage of NHS beds, a damning report by the Mental Health Act Commission reports.
Source:- Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 10

Kelly deputy denies approving sex offender as teacher
Stephen Twigg, former schools minister and deputy to Ruth Kelly,has denied he approved a sex offender to be a teacher. The education secretary’s aides had suggested a junior minister approved the decision last May to allow a registered sex offender to work in schools.
Source:- Daily Mail, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 21

One in four adults has a problem with drink
One in every four adults has a drink problem, says charity Turning Point.
Source:- Daily Mail, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 25

Plans for overhaul of NHS attacked by MPs
The Commons health select committee said there was little evidence to support the proposals to merge primary care trusts and transfer 200,000 district nurses and other staff to new employers. The MPs also criticised a further upheaval to NHS structures saying the cycle of perpetual change was ill-judged.
Source:- Financial Times, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 2

Watchdog says 1m children caught up in sub-standard schools
At least 1m children are being taught in sub-standard schools, according to the National Audit Office, which reveals nearly a quarter of secondary schools in England perform poorly.
Source:- Financial Times, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 2

Council tries to sweeten flats sale with charity gift
Westminster Council tried yesterday to head off criticism over the sale of Dolphin Square, one of London’s best known housing estates, to a US company by handing £80m to a new housing charity.
Source:- Financial Times, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 5

Former police official charged
Colin Inglis, 48, the former chairman of Humberside Police Authority, appeared in court yesterday charged with 14 counts of indecent assault in relation to allegations of child abuse during his time as a social worker in the 1980s.
Source:- The Times, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 4

Babysitter raped 12-week-old as girlfriend took pictures
Alan Webster, 40, from Hatfield, Hertfordshire, was jailed for life after pleading guilty to raping a 12-week-old baby. His girlfriend Tanya French, 19, was jailed for 10 years after she took photographs of the abuse.
Source:- The Times, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 29

Psychiatrist calls for end to 30-year taboo over use of LSD as a medical treatment
British psychiatrists are beginning to debate the highly sensitive issue of using LSD for therapeutic purposes to unlock secrets buried in the unconscious which may underlie the anxious or obsessional behaviour of some of their patients.
Source:- The Guardian, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 3

Nine year olds calling Samaritans
Children as young as nine are contacting Samaritans counsellors during family break-ups, it emerged yesterday. Last year the charity got 130,000 messages with up to 80 per cent from young people.
Source:- Daily Mirror, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 18

Money wasted on Whitehall consultants
Whitehall departments are “pouring money down the drain” by paying private consultants to repeat work they have already done for other ministries, according to Richard Abbott, the civil servant in charge of a campaign to cut £8 billion from the overall public bill for procurement.
Source:-Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 8

One in five has experience of wrong NHS diagnosis
Almost one in five people have had illness misdiagnosed or know someone who has, a YouGov survey finds.
Source:- Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 11 January, page 10

Child porn doctor jailed
A GP found with hundreds of images of boys on his computer was jailed yesterday, banned from working with children and put on the sex offenders’ register. Riccardo Benci from Darlington admitted 19 counts of making indecent images of children.
Source:- Daily Mirror, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 5

Meningitis lifesaver
Parents are to be given new guidelines on spotting the signs of meningitis in children after a dramatic rethink by doctors.
Source:- Daily Mail, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 1

Blair: I smacked my children (except Leo)
Tony Blair fuelled the debate about corporal punishment last night by revealing that he smacked his three eldest children when they were small.
Source:- Daily Mail, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 2

Daydreamers top of the class
Children who gaze out of the window rather than look at the teacher could turn out to be the best classroom performers, according to researchers at Stirling University, reporting in the British Journal of Developmental Psychology.
Source:- Daily Mail, Wednesday 11 January 2006, page 5

Welsh news

Charity concerned by winter death toll
A leading Welsh charity has called for more research into why such a high number of older people are dying each winter.
Help the Aged in Wales is concerned that the number older people dying from cold-related illness is on the increase.
Last year the figure stood at 1, 800 older people, up 300 from the previous winter.
Source:- Western Mail, Wednesday 11 January 2006

Scottish news

Minister lost for an answer as cost of free bus travel rockets
The cost of the Scottish executive’s flagship policy of providing free bus travel to one million older people across Scotland has more than doubled in the space of just three months. George Lyon, the deputy finance minister, admitted that he did not know why the budget for the free travel scheme, which will come into effect in April, had risen from £13 million to £34 million this year.
MSPs wanted to know why planned spending on the “smart card” – which will be used by elderly and disabled people to travel on buses – had risen from £3 million to £9 million between the publication of the Executive’s draft budget in September and its revised figures, released in December.
Source: The Scotsman, Wednesday 11 January 2006

Community service for child-abuse case couple
A retired teacher and his wife who abused foster children in their care have avoided jail sentences because of their age and ill-health.
A judge at the High Court in Edinburgh told Henry and Irene Lorimer that they had been found guilty of a gross breach of trust. They protested their innocence.
Henry Lorimer, 75, a former geography teacher at Auchinleck Academy, Ayrshire, was ordered to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work, and retired nurse Irene, 64, was told she would have to do 150 hours’ work. Source: The Scotsman, Wednesday 11 January

Little girl unbowed by her disability
Feature on Paige Allan, a four-year-old girl who is hoping to receive a pair of artificial legs this year after losing her hands and feet to a meningitis infection in 2002.
Source: The Scotsman, Wednesday 11 January

Veil lifted on removal of asylum seekers
The Home Office yesterday agreed to give MPs more information about asylum seekers who are forcibly removed from their homes.The move follows a raft of reports of asylum seekers being dragged from their homes in the middle of the night in preparation for deportation. Following a request from John Roberston, Labour MP for Glasgow North West, the Home Office agreed to contact MPs that requested it when an asylum seeker in their constituency is forcibly removed.
Source: The Herald, Wednesday 11 January




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