Extra £70m to be pumped into health and social care

By Mithran Samuel, Derren Hayes and Amy Taylor

Extra £70m to be pumped into health and social care

More than £70 million is to be invested in supporting social enterprises in health and social care, care services minister Ivan Lewis announced yesterday.

Meanwhile, a Commons select committee is set to examine whether the government’s push to increase third sector involvement in public services will deliver value for money, accountability and service improvement.

Source:- Financial Times Thursday 25 January 2007 page 3

Blair urges successor to push choice in services

Prime minister Tony Blair has urged his successor to push ahead with the government’s agenda of choice and competition in public services, in a speech to business leaders.

He told a Confederation of British Industry conference said public services would lose public support if they were not as responsive to need as the private sector.

Source:- Financial Times Thursday 25 January 2007 page 3

Cabinet rejects exemption on gay adoptions

The Catholic Church is almost certain to lose its battle for an exemption for its adoption agencies from regulations outlawing discrimination against same sex couples.

Under proposals likely to emerge, Catholic agencies would be required to consider gay couples or close down after a reasonable delay.

Source:- The Guardian Thursday 25 January 2007 page 1

Ministers under fire over child obesity strategy

Efforts to tackle childhood obesity are confused, slow-paced and hampered by ministers’ attempts to mollify the food industry, MPs warn today.

The public accounts committee is due to call for ministers to put more pressure on food manufacturers to produce healthier brands and give much clearer guidelines to parents on what to do if their children are obese.

Source:- The Guardian Thursday 25 January 2007 page 4

Top judge comes to aid of Reid in prisons crisis 

Britain’s most senior judge last night backed home secretary John Reid’s appeal to the judiciary not to jail less serious offenders to cope with the prisons overcrowding crisis.

Lord Phillips, the lord chief justice, made the comments after the Magistrates’ Association criticised the move as a potential attack on their independence.

Source:- The Guardian Thursday 25 January 2007 page 11

Scottish digest
Catholic adoption agencies ‘could be phased out’

Tony Blair will end the stand-off between the churches and Labour MPs over the provision of gay adoption by finding other ways of dealing with the difficult-to-place children taken care of by the Catholic adoption agencies.

After a day in which the row intensified at Westminster, government sources revealed last night that the Prime Minister was considering a transition period in which the Catholic agencies could be phased out over a period of years.

In Scotland, the Catholic Church complained the new Westminster legislation was a “betrayal” of assurances it received when controversial adoption legislation was passed by Holyrood in December.

Source:- The Herald, Thursday 25 January

HIV figures down

A total of 347 people were diagnosed with HIV in Scotland last year, according to figures just published.

Health Protection Scotland said this was down from 405 in 2005 but higher than the 1990’s.

Source:- The Scotsman, Thursday 25 January 
Kid porn perv was foster dad

A former foster carer convicted of possessing 3,000 child porn pictures has insisted he was innocent.
George Robb, who is to be sentenced in March, said he and his wife had cared for 50 to 60 children over 12 years until about 2000.

“I did not ask for the emails to be sent, they were sent to me.”

He claimed emails containing images of child porn had been sent to him unsolicited and that he kept them as a “form of research” to see how widespread such images were.

Source:- The Daily Record, Thursday 25 January

Welsh news

Mental health hospital to open in Welshpool

A new mental health hospital is set to be built in mid Wales.

The John Munroe Hospital Group plans to open the 24-bed centre in Welshpool Powys in six weeks time.

The project is being carried out in partnership with the NHS.

Source:- Western Mail, Thursday January 25th 2007


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