By Clare Jerrom and Reg McKay.
Labour strategy to revamp long-term care for
Labour denied older people would face private charges as they
gave details of their new concordat on long-term care
Health minister John Hutton said the agreement will set a new
framework for planning nursing and residential places, as well as
ensuring that more people are cared for at home.
The private sector have called the agreement on long term care
“Concordat Two” after the original concordat signed by the
government and private hospitals.
Hutton said the social care concordat was a different concept as
up to 80 per cent of provision for older people is already in
private or voluntary homes.
“The government is not a commissioner of social care, that is
done by local authorities. The key partners in this concordat are
local authorities and the private sector.
“The agreement is not about shifting care from the public sector
to the private sector. It is about planning strategically to make
sure there is enough capacity and improving the commissioning of
care,” he said.
As Labour publicised its plans, the Liberal Democrats promised
free long-term care for older people, and the Tories promised an
above inflation pension rise.
Source:- The Times Thursday 31 May page 2
Alzheimer’s patients face hope as scientists at Dundee
University have found a way of diagnosing the disease in living
patients, which could help treatment.
Previously the diagnosis could not be certain until the patient
dies, but now a protein has been found that decreases as the
Source:- The Times Thursday 31 May page 5
Blair pledges protection for public workers
Public service workers will face better protection, as people
who attack nurses, doctors and teachers will face harsher
Tony Blair set out a programme to increase the protection for
public workers in the fifth of his main general election speeches,
concentrating on rights and responsibilities.
He said: “These people work hard for the community. The
community has to stand up for them.”
Source:- The Times Thursday 31 May page 15
Amnesty attacks Britain on asylum
Amnesty International’s annual report attacks
Britain’s treatment of refugees and criticises the
country’s record on human rights.
Dispersed asylum seekers, many of whom had been sent to areas
where the local people had no experience of living with them, had
witnessed an “alarming shortfall” in access to legal advice, the
It criticised the fact that up to 1,000 asylum seekers were
being held in detention at any one time.
The negative media coverage was criticised by Amnesty, which it
said “pandered to racial prejudice and created a hostile
environment for many refugees”.
Kate Allen, Amnesty International’s director, spoke about
the increase of 38 per cent of Afghan refugees arriving in Britain
between January and April.
She said: “It is clear that the journey from Afghanistan to the
United Kingdom is one from desperation to despair. How can we claim
to be a just and tolerant when we greet those fleeing persecution
with such hostility and suspicion?”
Source:- The Guardian Thursday 31 May page 11
Brown is planning tax on child benefits, claim
Labour’s plans for reforming child support could result in
child benefit being taxed or means tested, the Tories will claim
David Willetts, the Conservative social security spokesperson,
will challenge Gordon Brown to pledge that child benefit worth
£15.50 a week for the first child and £10.35 for
subsequent children, will not be taxed.
Willetts claims the Labour manifesto contains “weasel words”,
which would allow the Chancellor to tax or means test the
According to the Tories, a higher rate taxpayer with two
children would pay an extra £537.68 a year if the benefit was
Source:- Daily Telegraph Thursday 31 May page 1
Care crisis looms
Private residential and nursing homes have threatened to cease
all admissions in Aberdeen unless there is a solution to their
deepening cash crisis. The move follows one day after Scottish
Care, representing the majority of private care home owners,
expressed anger and disappointment at the lack of action following
a meeting with the Scottish executive. The Grampian Branch of
Scottish Care has served notice on Aberdeen Council that admissions
will stop in 14 days unless a solution is found.
Source:- The Scotsman Thursday 31 May page 2
Family face eviction over attacks on
Scotland’s first eviction order raised because of attacks
on refugees has been served on a Glasgow mother of four.
The 42-year old woman lives in the Sighthill area of Glasgow,
the scene of repeated violent attacks on refugees over the past
month. It is understood her 14-year-old twin sons are well known to
the police for their attacks on refugees. A spokesperson for
Glasgow Council confirmed: “We have served a notice to recover
possession of a property in Sighthill and the tenant has 28 days to
Source:- The Herald Thursday 31 May page 1