Wednesday 25 September 2002

By Clare Jerrom, Shona Main and Alex

Shift parenting leaves fathers most

Many British fathers barely see their children during the week
because of working hours, according to research.

Forty five per cent of fathers returned home from work after
their children had gone to bed, while 41 per cent left the house
before their children got up.

When both parents working hours were taken together, research
showed that only a minority of families have both parents working a
nine-to-five shift.The result is a parenting shift where one parent
cares for the children while the other works.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation study said some parents saw shift
parenting as beneficial, as it allowed them to maximise the time
they spent with their children.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 25 September page 4

Boy, 12, is cleared of killing refugee after football

A 15-year-old boy was convicted of manslaughter yesterday after
he asked his younger cousin to fetch him the “biggest, sharpest
knife” he could find, and then used it to stab another boy to

The younger cousin, aged 12, was cleared of manslaughter and
murder, while the convicted boy was told by the judge that he faced
years in custody for killing the Somalian refugee.

The youth, who stabbed Kayser Osman in the heart outside a youth
club, was cleared of murder on the grounds of provocation.

The court heard how the killing was the result of a six week
dispute between the 15-year-old and Osman, which came to a head
following a game of football last March.

The younger defendant, who was 11 at the time, accepted that he
had “dutifully” fetched the knife but told the jury he thought it
would be used just to scare the victim.

Osman fled Mogadishu with his family in 1989.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 25 September page 5

Cherie Booth attacks government’s record on
children’ rights

The government was criticised by the prime minister’s wife
last night for being “half hearted” about children’s rights,
and failing to live up to its obligations under the UN convention
on the rights of a child.

Cherie Booth QC called on the government to set up a
children’s rights commission to safeguard the rights of
vulnerable children and give them a voice.

She predicted the UN committee on the rights of the child, which
is due to report next month on the UK’s compliance with the
convention, would “find the government wanting in a number of
respects, including juvenile justice, education, asylum seekers and

Tony Blair’s wife said children from the poorest families
in the UK were among the unhealthiest in the developed world. The
UK had “one of the worst records in Europe for locking up
children”, and conditions in young offender institutions were “far
from conducive to effective development”.

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 25 September page

Guardian Society

For love or money

With top salaries lagging way behind the private sector, it
seems that much more money is needed to attract quality chief
executives to public services. But is it just a question of

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 25 September page

Life’s no holiday

The letter of the law is making people homeless in Cornwall

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 25 September page

Balanced view

Union welcomes staff code revisions

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 25 September page

Sent to Kent

Inconsistencies in the national provision of fostering mean that
many children end up living far from home and without access to

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 25 September page

Vicious victims

Wendy Wallace on why many experts believe the only way to solve
the problem of child abuse is to help the perpetrators

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 25 September page

Giving with one hand…

New care payments guidance adds to disability inequalities

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 25 September page

Scottish newspapers

Accusations fly over homelessness rise

The Scottish executive has been accused of “fiddling the
figures” of Scotland’s homeless.

The number of homeless people in Scotland has risen 3 per cent
over the last year. The executive said the rise was due to a better
awareness of new procedures.

The SNP’s shadow social justice minister Kenneth Gibson claimed
the new methods of calculating the number of homeless as a
“fiddle”. He said: “To make matters worse, rather than addressing
the problem, New Labour have adopted the old Tory trick of fiddling
the figures by changing the way they are assessed.”

A bill was introduced to the parliament last week that proposes
to widen the definition of priority need for housing to include the

Source:- The Herald Wednesday 25 September page 6

25 per cent of Scots admit racism

A survey carried out by the executive has revealed that one in
four Scots are “slightly racist”, while more than half of those
polled admitted they would be concerned if more people from ethnic
minorities arrived in Scotland.

The findings of this survey were announced as the executive
launched its £1 million advertising campaign to tackle racism
and value diversity.

The adverts, which will appear on television, cinema and radio,
seek to challenge commonly held racist attitudes, behaviour and

Dharmendra Kanani, head of the Commission for Racial Equality
Scotland, welcomed the campaign.

He said: “For too long, the anti-racist debate has focused on
the size of the ethnic minority community and that complacency must
end. This wide-ranging campaign aims to challenge overt and subtle
forms of racism as well as to underline a positive message about
the benefits of tackling racism and embracing diversity.”

Source:- The Scotsman Wednesday 25 September page

Welsh newspapers

‘I firmly believe that there was a cover-up
job’ says father

The father of a man who claims he was abused at a school in
south Wales has accused former governors of a
‘cover-up’ to protect the reputation of Welsh

He told the Clywch inquiry, which is looking at the
circumstances surrounding alleged abuse by John Owen, a former
drama teacher at the school, that senior management had covered up
allegations of abuse when they surfaced in 1991.

He said that this might have been to protect the good name of
the school and of Welsh education.

Owen resigned from the school, Ysgol Gyfun Rhydfelen in
Pontypridd in 1991 following allegations from a parent that her
daughter had been asked to perform a sex act with a boy during a
drama workshop.

Another parent had made similar claims that governors at the
school had not taken any action following allegations of abuse, and
she said in her evidence to the inquiry that she suspected a
‘whitewash’ had taken place.

The inquiry chaired by Peter Clarke, children’s
commissioner for Wales, heard evidence yesterday from the parents
of three of Owen’s alleged victims.

Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 25 September page 1 and

Man faces four more sex charges

The former head of a network of children’s homes in north
Wales who faces a series of sex charges has been charged with four
more offences.

John Allen, formerly of Wrexham, appeared at Flintshire
magistrates court at Mold yesterday afternoon.

He faces two charges of an illegal sex act and two charges of
indecent assault on a boy under 16 that date back to the 1960s. He
has already indicated not guilty pleas to a total of 21 offences
that occurred over a period of 34 years.

Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 25 September page 3

Big Issue Addicts Crisis

A survey of sellers of the Big Issue in Wales has found that
many of them are addicted to drugs.

Big Issue Cymru director Su West said that the organisation had
carried out research and found that many of its vendors had
addiction problems. She said that the research had also shown that
the majority wanted to receive treatment and that the real problem
was a lack of services to help sellers come off drugs.

But she warned that anyone who was suspected of dealing would be
reported to the police and sacked.

Source:- South Wales Echo Tuesday 24 September pages 1
and 11

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