Four-year term plan to create stronger council leaders

Four-year term plan to create stronger council leaders
The government will today seek to create a generation of strong, highly visible local leaders by forcing all councils to have their top politician elected for four years.
The local government white paper, to be published today, will introduce four-year terms for all directly elected mayors or local council leaders. Local people will also be given the power to elect local council cabinets, or executives, again for four year terms.
The aim is to create continuity, stability and stronger leadership by scrapping the current system of annual elections.
Source:- The Guardian, Thursday 26 October 2006, page 20

CSA should have been axed years ago, says civil servant
The government should have decided to scrap the Child Support Agency much earlier, the top civil servant at the Department for Work and Pensions said yesterday.
Source:- The Guardian, Thursday 26 October 2006, page 15

Don’t leave us to rot in poverty, say angry pensioners
A lobby of older people called for an immediate increase in pensions at parliament yesterday.
The protest, organised by the National Pensioners’ Convention, involved some pensioners dressing up as skeletons to illustrate the number of people who will die before the government links pensions to earnings in 2012.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Thursday 26 October 2006, page 2

Psychiatrist rushed me into having sex change, says patient
A former patient of the UK’s best-known expert on transsexualism yesterday told an inquiry that she bitterly regrets changing sex and feels unable to live as either a man or a woman.
Source:- The Guardian, Thursday 26 October 2006, page 8

MPs attack Brown plan to increase funding for state schools
Gordon Brown’s pledge to raise state school funding to the same level as that enjoyed by private schools has been criticised by a committee of MPs.
Source:- The Times, Thursday 26 October 2006, page 10

Man convicted of killing child after 24-year fight by father
A man has been convicted of the murder of his ex-girlfriend’s three year-old daughter, 24 years after the killing took place. Police reopened their investigation into the death of Lisa Jayne Pegg after a campaign for justice by her father.
Source:- The Guardian, Thursday 26 October 2006, page 18

Welsh News
Disabled still excluded from workforce in Wales
A higher number of disabled people are being excluded from public sector jobs in Wales than in Scotland and England new figures show.
The stats, collected by the Disability Rights Commission, show that the number of disabled people working in the public sector had only increased by 3 per cent in Wales in the last decade compared to 18 per cent in England and Scotland.
Source:- Western Mail, Thursday 26 October 2006

Mum ‘shocked’ at sight of baby’s injuries
A mother told a jury that she was not aware of the extent of her baby’s injuries until she saw him dying in hospital yesterday. Rebecca Lewis, 21, said that she was aware that Aaron Gilbert, who was 13 months old when he died, had became bruised after some minor mishaps but was she was not aware of any serious injuries.
Doctors found 50 injuries on Aaron’s body when he died. Lewis’ partner Andrew Lloyd, 21, has pleaded guilty to the toddler’s murder.
Source:- Western Mail, Thursday 26 October 2006

Scottish News
Parents escape Asbo law
One of the key measures of the Scottish executive’s flagship antisocial behaviour laws has never been used. No parenting orders have been implemented in the two years since the legislation was passed on October 28, 2004. The orders empower local authorities to fine and imprison those who fail to ensure their children behave and attend school.
Source:- The Herald, Thursday 26 October 2006

Claim Scots suffer as more Poles need services
Polish migrants are preventing native Scots from accessing local authority services, an official report says. Information-services workers at West Lothian Council, trying to support Poles who speak little or no English, now have much less time to help local people. The findings, revealed in a report by Grahame Blair, the council’s head of social policy, show a “huge” period of time is spent explaining entitlements and access to local amenities.
Source:- The Scotsman, Thursday 26 October 2006

Man in court on child-abduction charges
Seven primary-school pupils are giving evidence to a court via a video link against an elderly man accused of trying to abduct  them. Elderly James Thomson of Kelso, denies four charges of following the youngsters in his car and trying to pull them into his vehicle earlier this year. He is also accused of indecently assaulting a seven-year-old girl in a further incident that day. The alleged offences took place on four occasions around the Borders town on 1 June.
Source: The Scotsman, Thursday 26 October 2006


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