Social workers, teachers and local councils could be given new powers, under government proposals, to go to court to prevent families forcing their children into arranged marriages.
Source: – The Times, Friday January 4, 2008, page 32
Two thirds of the public does not believe prison works for young offenders as it turns under-25’s into professional criminals, according to a new survey. Instead 84% of respondents said that compulsory work in the community was a better alternative to locking up non violent offenders.
Source: – Daily Mirror, Friday January 4, 2008, page 24
The bodies of children who die suddenly are being illegally transported hundreds of miles for postmortems because there are only 40 qualified paediatric pathologists.
Shortages have become acute since recommendations were made in 2004 by experts that anyone who examines a child’s body should be trained in child deaths, in the wake of the case of Sally Clark.
Clark was wrongly jailed for the murder of her two children, and was freed after it was discovered that a generalist pathologist had failed to tell the court that one baby had a bacterial infection, which could have been the cause of death.
Source:- The Guardian, Friday 4 January 2007, page 4
Racism at immigration centres revealed in report
A race relations audit of immigration detention centres has found that officers at several of the ten centres had taunted detainees, including in a racist manner.
The report, commissioned by the Border and Immigration Agency, found that banter and taunting was not seen as discriminatory or harassment but as part of the natural relationship between the detainee and custody officer.
At the biggest centre, Harmondsworth, near Heathrow, the audit team found repeated patterns of alleged racist incidents being missed, while in nearby Colnbrook, one officer described detainees as “black bastards” and “animals”.
Source:- The Guardian, Friday 4 January 2007, page 13
Tories attack government for lack of action on trafficking
The Conservatives have attacked the government for a lack of action in tackling trafficking, including a failure to have a plan for implementing the European convention on human trafficking, which it signed last year.
The Tories also highlighted a recent Unicef report that showed that 183 of 330 child trafficking victims put into care in the UK later went missing.
Source:- The Guardian, Friday 4 January 2007, page 14
Poor families ‘deterred’ from benefits
Families on low incomes have stopped claiming benefits due to the bureaucratic tax credit system, the Liberal Democrats cclaimed yesterday.
According to figures from Revenue and Customs, 100,000 fewer people claimed child tax credit in December 2007 compared to a year earlier.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph Friday 4 January 2007 page 10