Thursday 10 October 2002

By Clare Jerrom, Nicola Barry and Alex

Asylum centres rejected by Lords

The government’s proposals to build accommodation centres
for asylum seekers in rural areas were defeated in the Lords last

Conservative and Liberal Democrat peers attacked the plans to
place 750 asylum seekers in each of the three proposed centres
before peers inflicted the defeat. Under David Blunkett’s
plans asylum seekers would remain in the centres for at least six

The home office said it would not allow its plans to be
overruled by the peers. A spokesperson said: “The government will
consider the implications of this result, but the Commons gave the
bill a third reading by an overwhelming majority.”

Source:- The Times Thursday 10 October page 2

Danielle ‘tried to avoid

Danielle Jones changed the way she walked to school on the
morning she disappeared perhaps in a bid to avoid the uncle who
abducted and killed her, a court was told yesterday.

Shortly after Danielle left home in East Tilbury, Essex, in June
last year, she changed direction to take a longer route, despite
having told her friends to go on without her because she was not
ready, Chelmsford crown court was told.

Builder Stuart Campbell, the 15-year-old’s uncle, denied
kidnapping and murdering his niece after developing an
“irresistible sexual attraction” for her.

Source:- The Times Thursday 10 October page 2

Letwin drug programme dismissed as

The Conservative’s plans to adopt a radical
“tough-but-tender” drugs policy was criticised yesterday as forcing
young drug addicts to accept rehabilitation.

Shadow home secretary Oliver Letwin sparked controversy by
suggesting that young addicts who refused to co-operate might be
trailed by police to collect evidence for prosecution.

David Blunkett dismissed the plans, which would involve a
campaign to encourage parents, teachers and social workers to
inform police if they knew someone aged 18 or under addicted to
cocaine or heroin, as unworkable

“It is not up to politicians to commit the police to a
free-for-all which distorts their role in protecting the public
from a wide variety of crimes and anti social behaviour,” said the
home secretary.

Source:- The Times Thursday 10 October page 12

High truancy rates put parents on fast track to

More than 40 per cent of children in some areas are evading
schools in their areas, according to the latest truancy

Primary schools were found to suffer truancy rates equal to or
higher than secondary schools in many areas.

The official figures were launched as the government announced
plans for fast-track prosecutions of parents and persistent

Education minister Stephen Twigg said parents faced prison
within 12 weeks unless their children attended school regularly.
Daily police “truancy sweeps” in city centres are to be revived in
hotspots such as Liverpool and Sandwell, west Midlands.

Source:- The Times Thursday 10 October page 14

Council threatens homeless with jail

Homeless people are to be banned from rough sleeping in central
London and face £500 fines if they refuse to leave the streets
under plans from Westminster council.

The leader of the Conservative controlled council, Simon Milton,
claimed that residents felt threatened by “aggressive begging and
loutish behaviour by intoxicated rough sleepers”.

He said there was no need for people to sleep rough, saying the
council would prefer rough sleepers to accept help in one of the
day or night centres.

Homelessness charities have condemned the proposed by-law as a
return to the Victorian era of criminalising the homeless.

Source:- The Guardian Thursday 10 October page 16

Today’s youth face old age on benefit

Britain’s younger generation could enjoy a long and
successful career, and still rely on state hand outs in retirement,
according to new figures.

The analysis by accountancy firm Pricewaterhouse Coopers warns
that younger people could face relative poverty in old age.

The research highlights the need for radical changes in the way
Britons save.

Source:- The Times Thursday 10 October page 1

Scottish newspapers

Torture case social workers dodge rap

Social work staff who allowed three people to abuse a vulnerable
woman for months have escaped punishment, despite a damning

Consultant David Stallard’s probe highlighted a catalogue
of blunders by Scottish Borders council.

Source:- Daily Record October 10 page 27

Scots girls driven by school taunts to hurt

Bullies’ taunts are driving Scottish schoolgirls to harm
themselves with knives or feel suicidal, a report has revealed.

The ‘Girls and Violence’ study by Glasgow University is one of
20 investigations into brutality funded by the Economic Social
Research Council.

Source:- Daily Record October 10 page 31

Plan to trail young drug users derided as

A proposed Tory “snoopers charter” in which police could trail
youngsters suspected of taking hard drugs, last night ran into
trouble after the government and agencies decided the scheme was

Source:- The Herald October 10 page 6

Welsh newspapers

‘Drugs Ring Set Up Shop’

The scale of the serious drug problem in south Wales became
clear when a court heard how drug dealers allegedly made daily
deliveries to Ebbw Vale.

Cardiff crown court heard allegations that four men and two
women were involved in a major ring supplying Ebbw Vale with crack
cocaine and heroin, and that they would ‘set up shop in a
house in the town’ to sell drugs.

Two of the defendants, Peter Walker and Dwayne Stirrell were
said to have travelled to south Wales daily from Bristol with
consignments of class A drugs.

The case continues.

Source:- South Wales Argus Wednesday 9 October page

Bed blocking causing trouble again just as winter

Wales’ hospitals are already beginning to buckle under the
pressures of the winter season.

The Royal Gwent hospital in Newport has been forced to cancel
all orthopaedic surgery because of “unprecedented” rises in
emergency admissions.

Other large hospitals in the principality have also reported
that they are operating at full capacity because of high levels of

At present, around 1,000 hospital beds are blocked with patients
who cannot be discharged because there are no places available for
them in the community.

A spokesperson for the Welsh Assembly said the NHS Welsh
directorate was working closely with colleagues in health and
social care to improve the management of emergency pressures over
the coming winter.

Source:- Western Mail Thursday 10 October page 7

Campaign focuses on victims of torture

A campaign against torture is being held at 130 locations across

The Freedom Feast is a concept created by Christians Against
Torture, an initiative by Welsh churches.

The Rev Roy Jenkins from Cardiff said the campaign was aimed at
focusing on the torture issue and praying for specific victims.
Each event will celebrate the 21st anniversary of the group’s
launch, but will also feature the lighting of a candle in memory of
four current victims of torture.

The group also intend to send hundreds of notes of encouragement
to prisoners to show that they have not been forgotten. This
year’s feasts begin today and run until Monday.

Source:- Western Mail Thursday 10 October page 9

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