Wednesday 28 August 2002

By Clare Jerrom, Reg McKay and Alex Dobson.

Soham pupils get counselling for trauma and

Children who attended the same school as Jessica Chapman and
Holly Wells are receiving counselling for psychological problems
ranging from severe trauma to depression.

A group of clinical psychologists, GPs, teachers and churchmen
have been called to the village of Soham in Cambridgeshire in an
attempt to help the school friends of the murdered

They fear that friends of the two girls will have to return to
St Andrew’s junior school while detectives are still looking
for clues in nearby grounds.

The US air force base at Mildenhall, Suffolk, has offered the
services of a number of its clinical psychologists, and doctors
have come out of retirement to help.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 August page 2

Vetting backlog starves schools of teachers

Schools are facing shortages of teachers and other staff as the
Criminal Records Bureau strives to clear a back log before the new
school term starts next week.

Just 4,100 applications were dealt with by staff at the bureau
over the bank holiday weekend raising fears that they will
eradicate the backlog by next Wednesday.

Following the introduction of emergency working practices, the
home office revealed yesterday that the backlog had fallen from
22,355 to 18,193 by 8am on Monday. At that rate the backlog of
checks on school staff will be at 6,700 on the 4 September deadline
set by ministers last week when they ordered emergency action to
deal with the thousands still awaiting vetting.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 August page 2

Working mothers suffer

More than one fifth of mothers returning to work shortly after
childbirth complain of a mental and physical burn out by the time
their child is 18-months-old.

While 70 per cent of new mothers return to work or plan to, only
20 per cent do so for intellectual and social reasons, according to
the survey of 2,280 new mothers. The remainder cited financial

Around 22 per cent said they were exhausted by the demands of
work and motherhood.

Warren Lenney, consultant paediatrician at the North
Staffordshire Hospital, said: “That some women are considering
returning to work as early as 12 weeks after birth purely for
financial reasons highlights the fact that many mothers need
further support from partners, families and the government.”

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 August page 4

Student gap year

A disabled student, who was rejected from Oxford university
despite six grade A A-levels, has decided to take a gap year.

Anastacia Fedotova, 19, who is deaf, has named Cambridge as a
likely choice, but has not ruled out re-applying to Oxford.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 August page 4

Two teenagers killed schoolboy to ‘save

Two teenagers who stabbed a schoolboy to death to “save face”
over a £10 cannabis deal, were told they faced life sentences

The youths who were aged 14 and 16 at the time, attacked Abdul
Maye,aged 15, in front of his classmates outside the school gates.
A 10 inch kitchen knife was plunged into Abdul’s back by the
younger of the boys. This pierced the boy’s heart and lung
while the second youth attacked him with a blade.

A jury found the boys guilty of murder by an 11-1 majority at
the Old Bailey in London.

The younger boy wept into the arms of his social worker as the
verdicts were read out. The older boy, who is Jamaican and in this
country illegally, showed no emotion. He was told he would be
deported to Jamaica on the completion of his sentence.

Judge Paul Focke, QC, adjourned sentencing until next month
while psychological and probation reports are prepared. He warned
the youths, who cannot be named, that they face life

Source:- The Times Wednesday 28 August page 7

Climbie social worker is ‘race

A social worker, convicted yesterday of refusing to testify
before the Victoria Climbie inquiry, said the decision to prosecute
her may have been motivated by institutional racism.

Carole Baptiste was found guilty of ignoring a summons to give
evidence before the inquiry into the abused child’s death,
headed by Lord Laming.

Baptiste claimed her medical condition meant she was unfit to
testify, but this argument was rejected by district judge Hayden

He found her guilty of breaching the summons to testify before
Lord Laming and fined her £500, at Camberwell Green
magistrates court, south London. She could have been jailed for up
to six months.

Baptiste is the first person to be prosecuted for obstructing a
public inquiry under powers in force since 1972. After the case,
she said she had been “persecuted”.

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 28 August page 1

Sex offender sent to stay with children

A registered sex offender was given a room in a hotel where
children were staying, on his first night out of prison.

The manager of the Grafton Hotel in Manchester was not told of
the man’s background, although police and probation staff
knew of the man’s arrangements.

The probation service admitted the arrangement was “far from
ideal” and spoke of “difficulties” surrounding sex offenders’
release from prison.

Probation chief officer Christine Knott said the case
highlighted some of the problems of managing sex offenders in the

Source:- Daily Telegraph Wednesday 28 August page 2

Tories seek clarification on asylum seeker

The government was challenged by the Conservative party
yesterday to respond to allegations that it had tried to cover up
its failure to meet its own target for the removal of failed asylum

Shadow deputy prime minister David Davies called on Tony Blair
to clarify the status of a manifesto pledge at the last election to
remove 30,000 failed asylum seekers a year. Downing Street told
lobby journalists in July that the target was not attainable, and
that the government had abandoned it in June 2001.

But on 27 June, home secretary David Blunkett reiterated the
promise in the Commons.

Downing Street said last night that the government had been open
about the problems in meeting the target. “It has been a difficult
and ambitious target we have been unable to meet so far.”

Source:- Daily Telegraph Wednesday 28 August page 8

Guardian Society

Vote early

Middlesbrough has the first elected youth mayor and other cities
have set up youth parliaments. But will this encourage more young
people to get involved in public service and, even if they do, will
it make a difference?

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 August page

Art of coping

Sarah Lee on a charity stimulating creative talents to help
people live with the shock of a terminal illness diagnosis

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 August page

Breaking point

Families with disabled children more likely to suffer

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 28 August page

Scottish newspapers

Jobs for young offenders

Young offenders could be paid for on-job training as an
alternative to prison if the Scottish executive presses ahead with
controversial plans.

Talks are already understood to have taken place between Richard
Simpson, deputy minister for justice, and an employment training
provider, Wise Group.

Under the draft plans, 16 to 17-year-olds who default on payment
of fines would be paid the minimum wage to undertake compulsory
work training rather than being sent to jail. Critics of the scheme
say it proves to young offenders that crime really does pay.

Source:- The Scotsman Wednesday 28 August page

Home is the most dangerous place for

Children suffer more injuries at home than in any other place,
according to Glasgow-wide research carried out by Yorkhill NHS

The trust found that 44 per cent of all accident and emergency
injuries to children occurred at home compared with 15 per cent at
school and 14 per cent on the roads.

Source:- The Herald Wednesday 28 August page 10

Welsh newspapers

Scandal-hit home to be sold in council

A residential home for older people that has beeb dogged by
controversy is to be sold despite a council pledge that it would be

The home, Hazelcroft in Fairwater, Cardiff, has had a troubled
past with staff making hundreds of allegations and counter claims
of misconduct against one another, and there have been a series of
disciplinary hearings.

The home was closed for refurbishment and a joint statement from
the council and Hafod Housing Association that owned the building
stated at the time that the home would be improved to provide
additional services not available in the area.

But it is now understood to be ” surplus to requirements”, and
is the site is likely to be put on market. It is understood that
the council have turned down an offer from Hafod for the land
although the housing association says it has had no response from
the council.

A council spokesperson said that the matter was now in the hands
of the valuation department.

Two reports are due on Hazelcroft and a third investigation by
the Welsh assembly’s social services inspectorate is looking
at the relationship at 10 homes between Hafod and the Cardiff and
Vale of Glamorgan councils.

Source:- South Wales Echo Tuesday 27 August page 5

Why does a medical student have to travel 550 miles to
become a doctor?

A miner’s son with excellent A-levels has been forced to
study medicine in Scotland after Welsh university selectors
rejected him.

Arfon Powell, aged 18, wants to become the kind of
Welsh-speaking doctor that rural communities in Wales are
desperately short of. He was inspired to take up medicine after his
father developed acute health problems after years of working

But he was turned down by medical schools in Cardiff, Nottingham
and London and will now take up a place in Aberdeen.

Arfon said that as a Welsh speaker he would like to work in
areas of Wales where older people needed help, and that he was
feeling let down because he could not study in Wales.

Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 28 August page 7

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