A summary of social care stories from the main newspapers

By Clare Jerrom.

Police smash child porn network

Home raids at dawn yesterday on suspected paedophiles led to the
arrest of 30 people, including a 13-year-old boy and a man working
for a national youth organisation.

Greater Manchester police co-ordinated the operation codenamed
Appal, in which 25 forces in England, Scotland and Wales took
place. The raids followed a four-month investigation by the force
into paedophile activity on the internet.

Manchester officers warned those trading images of children
being abused would be tracked down and charged, as they seized
computer equipment in the raid on 40 homes.

Med Hughes, Manchester’s assistant chief constable, said:
“We have the tools to identify them and will root out paedophiles
and those who like collections of indecent images of children.”

Hughes added: “The 13-year-old involved in this is potentially a
victim as well as an offender.”

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 28 March page 5

Routine abuse of elderly in NHS care

A government report published yesterday has revealed a shocking
insight into the standard of nursing care given to older people in
Britain’s hospital wards.

Older patients are allowed to go hungry and thirsty, left
immobile and under-occupied for too long, and denied basic rights
of privacy, according to the report by the Standing Nursing and
Midwifery Advisory Committee. The report came as the government
announced a new drive to end ageism in the NHS.

The report highlights “major deficits” in the care older people
receive in hospital. Persistent “negative attitudes” towards
nursing older patients are a cause of “great concern”.

‘Caring for Older People: A Nursing Priority’ says:
“The care of older people is mainly deficient in fundamental
aspects of nursing, failing far too often to meet their basic needs
for food, fluid, rest activity and elimination. Their
psychological, mental health and rehabilitation needs are often

Source:- The Independent Wednesday 28 March
page 1

Half a million under-13s ‘are unlawfully

More than 100,000 children play truant from school so they can
earn money, a report published today reveals.

Employers are increasingly breaking the law by employing
under-13s, while others work illegally in shops, cafés and

Almost half a million children under 13 in England and Wales are
unlawfully employed, according to the Mori poll and study compiled
by the Trades Union Congress.

Under British law, no child under 13 can do any kind of paid
work, and older children are subject to strict controls on the
hours they can be employed.

John Monks, TUC general secretary, said: “It’s fine for
kids to earn a bit of extra pocket money with a paper round or
Saturday job. But it becomes a real problem if they are missing
school and finding they can’t keep up with school or

Source:- The Independent Wednesday 28 March
page 10

Cannabis users may be let off with a

A senior police officer has proposed those caught with a small
possession of cannabis should be let off with a warning and not

Cdr Brian Paddick’s, the head of the Metropolitan police
Lambeth division, wants officers to remove drugs, record the
confiscation and issue an on-the-spot warning.

A caution is effectively a criminal record and has to be
declared to employers. Last year police in England and Wales issues
57,000 cautions for cannabis use and possession.

Scotland Yard said the idea was a “local initiative” and not
force policy.

Source:- Daily Telegraph Wednesday 28 March page 1

Hague disowns MP over asylum attack

The Tory leader was under pressure last night to expel a veteran
MP from the party after he said that immigrants had undermined
Britain’s Anglo-Saxon community and increased crime.

William Hague insisted John Townsend’s comments were
unacceptable and did not represent Conservative policy. The MP for
Yorkshire East made the remarks during a speech to his constituency
party earlier this month.

According to today’s Daily Mirror newspaper, Townsend told
his party: “Our homogenous Anglo-Saxon society has been seriously
undermined by the massive immigration that has taken place since
the war. Illegal immigrants have got a new ploy. They call
themselves asylum seekers. In my view the only way to deal with the
problem is to send them back quickly.”

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 March page 2

Mother sues union over son’s

A mother has started groundbreaking legal action after her son
was branded violent and uncontrollable by his school.

Bonus Pastor school in Lewisham permanently excluded the
16-year-old boy last summer following a series of allegations about
his behaviour. One incident alleged the boy threw a teacher through
a French window.

The 26 teachers at the school refuse to teach the boy, meaning
supply staff undertake his lessons in isolation, after a reversal
in the decision by governors.

Next week, the woman will bring a case in the high court against
the union NASUWT that represents the members of staff involved.

The boy’s mother is challenging the union’s right to
take industrial action on pupil behaviour and will accuse the union
of inducing members to breach their ‘statutory duty to

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 March page 4

Help for disabled

Schools minister Jacqui Smith has announced £10 million of
investment in communication aids for schools, to benefit disabled

Voice recognition devices, spell checkers, speech synthesis
systems and mouth or eye operated devices for communications will
be funded through the investment.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 March page 4

Translator denies smuggling

A female translator denied helping to smuggle illegal immigrants
into Britain, a court heard yesterday.

Ying Guo denies knowing that 60 illegal Chinese immigrants were
loaded into a sealed container laden with tomatoes last summer.

When the lorry arrived in Dover, port officials found 58 dead
bodies, with only two survivors. They had suffocated.

Guo from Essex gave evidence at Maidstone crown court.

The trial continues.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 March page 6

Stalker’s 20-year obsession

An obsessive who is thought to have written thousands of
pornographic letters to a number of famous women, is being hunted
by Scotland Yard.

The man has tormented his victims, including Diana Rigg, Joan
Bakewell and Sue McGregor, over the past 20 years by sending
anonymous letters describing his sexual fantasies in explicit

Police only realised the letters were from the same person after
actor Moira Lister complained about a note she received while
performing at a West End play.

Three victims will talk tonight about their experience on a
Crimewatch UK programme.

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 28 March page 1

Art of survival

As England’s much-maligned special hospitals face up to
yet another reorganisation, the man formerly in charge of them,
Charles Kaye, argues that the siege mentality must be lifted.

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page

Where time is money

Secret volunteer economy remains backbone of charities

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page 4

Bargaining on the bill

May general election could cause NHS reform uncertainty

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page 4

Poetic justice

Dylan Thomas collaborating with Quakers? Sounds unlikely. But,
as Chris Arnot discovers, the hard-drinking poet and the abstemious
Cadbury’s shared an interest in housing for the poor.

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page 6

Best is yet to come

Critics say the ‘best value’ initiative has failed
in its first year to transform local services, but the director of
inspections Wendy Thomson tells Steve Brown that patience will
bring real rewards

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page

A pub with no fear

How ‘do-gooders’ and hostile locals joined forces in

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page

School’s out

Eileen Fursland on the children of asylum seekers who are denied
an education while they await dispersal

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page

Technology equality

Safe and easy access to IT is key issue for youngsters in

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page

Open challenge

Mind names new chief executive – Richard Brook

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 March page

More from Community Care

Comments are closed.