Balls orders intensive training for children’s directors after Baby P
The government is sending council children’s services chiefs on intensive training programmes to help them deal with complex child protection cases in the wake of the Baby P tragedy.
The move will address concerns that children’s services directors have been too focused on schools at the expense of social care. Since children’s services departments were merged in 2004, most director posts have gone to managers with an education, rather than a social services background.
Social landlords throw lifeline to their rivals
Three cash-rich housing associations have agreed to lend millions of pounds to some of their competitors struggling in the financial crisis that has engulfed the sector.
The Tenant Services Authority, the new regulator for the sector, has extracted promises from the housing associations to make the loans, according to a report in Friday’s Inside Housing magazine.
Council gives residents £50 to help pay their bills
A local authority is offering a £50 cash payment to all taxpayers next April to try to ease the problem of rising household bills.
The move, by the Conservative-run London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, comes as a number of town halls try to freeze or cut council tax rises next year.
NHS patients still in mixed-sex wards
Men and women in hospital are still being treated on mixed-sex wards with little or no segregation, despite government promises to improve privacy for patients, the Conservative Party says.
In April ministers claimed that they were close to abolishing mixed-sex accommodation in the National Health Service.
Read more on this story in The Times
Starved to death in an NHS hospital
Health ombudsman Ann Abraham is expected to deliver a withering attack on the cases of six people with learning disabilities who died in NHS care, allegedly unnecessarily, in a report this month.
The six cases were first highlighted by the disability charity Mencap in a report entitled Death By Indifference.
Read more on this story in The Daily Mail