Britain’s children unhappiest in Western world
Inequality is behind the poor self-perception of many children in the UK, according to an author of a Unicef report which found that the country’s children had the lowest well-being among 21 Western, developed countries.
Professor Jonathan Bradshaw said the self-perception of British children, in terms of health, education and happiness, was the worst of the 21 countries, and added: “The more unequal a society, the more relatively deprived people will feel, and child poverty is still double the rate it was in 1979.”
Source:- The Times, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 2
Jailing children a ‘national scandal’
A former Youth Justice Board official has said the government never explitly endorsed its target to cut custody numbers by 10 per cent and some of the YJB’s own staff lacked the appetite to radically cut numbers.
Former head of policy Jon Fayle, who until his resignation in November was officially responsible for cutting custody numbers, said former chair Rod Morgan, who resigned last month, fought an uphill battle against ministers’ unwillingness to cut custody numbers.
He called for a maximum limit on child custody to be written into law to free up funding for preventive services and enhancing custodial care for those who required it.
Source:- Society Guardian, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 1
Agonising death at care home with 999 ban
An 85-year-old woman died in agony after falling down stairs at a care home where staff were banned from dialling 999, an inquest was told.
Workers at the Felix Holme care home in Eastbourne were instructed not to call emergency services unless they had the owners’ permission.
Source:- Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 4
Little benefit for working single mothers
Labour’s tax and benefits system makes it more lucrative for single mothers to stay on state handouts than return to work, according to research from the world’s chief economic and social authority.
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development indicated that Britain has the Western world’s biggest benefits trap.
Source:- Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 5
Strangled girl known to social services
A toddler murdered in her bedroom while her mother was downstairs had been monitored by social services it has emerged.
Casey Leigh Mullen, two, was found dead on Saturday evening by her mother. Police were questioning a 21-year-old man yesterday who is thought to be Casey’s uncle Michael Mullen on suspicion of the murder.
Leeds Council social services had been briefly involved with Casey’s family in 2005 when she was a baby but not since.
Source:- Daily Mail, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 7
Sharp rise in teens with drink problem
The number of hospital admissions involving teenagers with alcohol-related diseases has almost doubled over the past four years, according to figures released in a parliamentary written answer from health minister Caroline Flint.
Source:- Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 12
Unions to confront Kelly on public sector pay
It has emerged that communities secretary Ruth Kelly has told local government leaders to restrict pay increases for staff to 2 per cent this year, in line with the government’s inflation target.
The news comes as local government unions submit a claim for rises of 5 per cent or £1,000, whichever is greater, for staff in 2007-8.
Source:- Financial Times, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 4
‘Bigger role’ for private sector in welfare-to-work
The government will give the private and voluntary sectors a bigger role in delivering welfare-to-work schemes, work and pensions secretary John Hutton said yesterday.
The news came as communities secretary Ruth Kelly said social housing provided barriers to work by not offering people the flexibility they needed to move, and said this needed to be addressed.
Source:- Financial Times, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 5
Child protection social workers defended
Child protection social workers risk being subject to physical and psychological violence by abusive parents and can become like hostages to them, putting their children at risk.
University of the West of England professor of social work Harry Ferguson said research showed that practitioners often in fear for their own safety as well as the children they were seeking to protect in such cases.
This could explain some of the findings in the serious case review into the recent Child B abuse case in Westminster, where practitioners were accused of being too parent-focused.
Source:- Society Guardian, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 3
Shock as doctors admit to ageism
Doctors in Britain regularly discriminate against older patients by denying them tests and treatments they offer to younger people, research shows today.
Source:- Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 1
Jail last resort, says senior judge
Courts should avoid jailing prisoners who pose no risk to the public, the most senior judge in England and Wales said yesterday.
Source:- Daily Telegraph, Wednesday 14 February 2007, page 2
No social care news today.