Wednesday 23 October 2002

By Clare Jerrom, Nicola Barry and Alex

Social workers take 150 years off sick

More than 150 years of work have been lost in a single social
services department as a result of sick days in just 12 months.

Staff at Bristol council’s social services department took
36,400 days off sick last year, the equivalent of 14 days for each
of its 2,600 workers.

The lost days at the department add up to a single employee
working more than 150 years.

Managers blame low morale caused by under funding, which has
resulted in staff facing increased workloads.

Graham Robertson, executive councillor with responsibility for
social services and health, said: “Social services jobs can be
physically tiring and stressful. Not only are staff managing large
case loads with limited resources, but the areas in which they work
are often emotionally draining.”

Source:- Daily Telegraph Wednesday 23 October page

Victims ‘need more support’

There should be more services run by organisations to look after
victims of crime, according to a report today.

The home office should develop a strategy to meet the needs of
crime victims and witnesses in court hearings in the best possible
way, the National Audit Office claims.

National charity, Victim Support, helped 1.4 million people last
year, but the number of volunteers has fallen by 3,000 to just
under 7,000 in 2000-2001.

The report also reveals that referral rates vary widely across
England and Wales.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 23 October page 4

Adverts cleared

Complaints about the campaign run by children’s charity
Barnardo’s have been rejected by the advertising

The Advertising Standards Authority launched an investigation
after receiving 20 objections to four adverts on the theme of child

Source:- The Times Wednesday 23 October page 4

Boy who attacked pupil wins case to stay at

A high court judged yesterday refused to exclude a pupil from a
school after he had sexually assaulted a fellow pupil.

The judge rejected an attempt by the victim’s mother to
overturn a decision by an education appeals panel to readmit a boy
to a secondary school in Birmingham.

Mr Justice Davis expressed sympathy for the 15-year-old girl
after he was informed she is on medication for depression and too
frightened to return to school following the attack.

But he rejected the family’s challenge that the
panel’s decision was perverse as “unarguable”, and said he
had to reject the claim because the girl’ mother had delayed
too long in making the application.

The court heard how the teenage girl was subjected to “an
unpleasant assault” at the school by two boys in March.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 23 October page 5

NHS error left serious accident victims at risk of

An error in NHS procedures that left serious accident victims at
risk of a permanent disability was being investigated by the
government last night, after specialists who could have saved them
were diverted to routine operations on patients on the waiting

The problem arose after a leading orthopaedic surgeon said he
was ordered to stop treating badly injured patients from outside
his catchment area.

Managers instructed consultant Martin Bircher and his specialist
team at St George’s hospital, south west London, to spend two
months concentrating on a backlog of routing operations on local

Following the instruction, St George’s, which is one of
three regional centres for treating accident victims with pelvic
injuries, no longer gave this work priority.

Bircher said victims had to get sub-standard treatment at local
hospitals sometimes with “disastrous” medical consequences.

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 23 October page 6

Firms face a new tide of red tape on

Plans to ban employers from discrimination against staff on the
basis of age, religion or sexual orientation were unveiled last

Women’s minister Barbara Roche announced plans to
massively extend existing laws banning unfair treatment of women
and ethnic minorities to other groups.

She added that the law banning discrimination against disabled
people would be widened to include the smallest firms,
barristers’ chambers and the police.

Under the plans staff will be able to claim harassment if their
‘dignity is violated’.

Most of the proposals will be in force by the end of next year
apart from the plans for older people which will be introduced in
2006 while the other changes settle down.

Source:- Daily Mail Wednesday 23 October page 41

Guardian Society

Mixed message

Controversy over new deaf charity head

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 23 October page

Equality is the spur

Large rise in employers establishing a disability policy

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 23 October page

Silent voices

Media awards show that positive portrayal of mental illness,
seen in TV drama, is lacking in news reporting

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 23 October page

Rocky road

A fresh focus on crack addition may be just in time to counter
the growing problem

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 23 October page

Blood ties

Homeless people often retain family contacts despite their
situation, according to new research

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 23 October page

Funding halves places

Budget deficit forces care trust to ration admissions

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 23 October page

Support wanting

Sisters’ test case will determine lifting policy in care

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 23 October page

Scottish newspapers

Nanny fed nuts to boy with allergy

A nanny risked a little boy’s life by deliberately setting
off his nut allergy, causing him to lapse into unconsciousness, and
held another baby’s hand against an oven until it was “red
raw”, a court heard yesterday.

Source:- The Scotsman Wednesday 23 October page 6

Aspirin ban for under 16s

Aspirin pills could soon carry a health warning not to be taken
by children under 16.

The Medicines Control Agency has launched an eight-week public
consultation on a proposal to introduce the warning on all aspirin
products because of links to Reye’s Syndrome.

Source:- The Scotsman Wednesday 23 October page 2

Free after just two years, a murderer manages to make a
mockery of bail laws

The scandal of Scotland’s bailed killers deepened last
night as it emerged that a convicted murderer has been free for
three years while lawyers argue over his appeal.

Source:- Daily Mail Wednesday 23 October page 4

Review should have covered solvents, says father of
teenager who died sniffing glue.

A father whose 16-year-old son died after inhaling lighter fuel
has criticised a government review of Scotland’s licensing
laws for not including the sale of potentially lethal solvents in
its remit.

Source:- The Herald Wednesday 23 October page 5

Welsh newspapers

Teenage pregnancies are on their way down

New government statistics show that the rates of teenage
pregnancy in south Wales are falling.

Almost 400 fewer teenage girls between the ages of 15-17 have
become pregnant over the last three years, and family planning
experts say that this is because sex education is working.

The Welsh Assembly has targeted teenage pregnancy as a major
health priority, and there are still concerns that rates are high
in some pockets of south Wales with some areas having amongst the
highest rates in the UK.

Source:- South Wales Echo Tuesday 22 October page 2

Patients in Wales may face a month-long wait to see

People in Wales will have to wait for a month to see their
doctor unless hundreds of GPs are recruited in the next five

The chairperson of the Welsh GP committee, Dr Andrew Dearden,
warned of a growing crisis in primary care, and said that something
‘serious’ needed to be done to address the problem.

The warning comes as Jane Hutt, Welsh assembly minister for
health and social services, prepares to unveil her vision for
staffing targets for the NHS by 2010.

Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 23 October page 1

More from Community Care

Comments are closed.