Wednesday 19 February 2003

By Amy Taylor, Nicola Barry and Alex

Second defeat for blocked beds Bill

Proposals for more strict monitoring of the effect of ‘bed
blocking’ on those unable to leave hospital, was approved in the
Lords last night, marking the government’s second defeat over the
plans in 24 hours.

The first saw the Lords reject the Community Care (Delayed
Discharges) Bill, calling for it to be delayed by a year. Ministers
are planning to attempt to overturn the decision in the House of

Source:- The Times Wednesday 19 February page 8

Climbdown lifts closure threat from care

Yesterday the government abandoned a group of building
regulations that forced many care homes to close.

The climbdown came in the publication of Whitehall’s amended
minimum standards for care homes document.

The regulations, covering areas such as minimum room sizes and
the width of doors, have caused the closure of around 2,000 homes
in the past five years.

Source:- Daily Mail Wednesday 19 February page 2

Man made ‘false claim of abuse in care to get

The court of appeal yesterday heard how a prisoner admitted to a
fellow inmate that he had made up his claims that he was abused by
care workers in order to receive compensation to go towards a sex

The revelation came in a case brought by Michael Lawson, one of
the care workers accused who is now appealing against his
conviction for indecent assault involving the alleged victim and
five others at Liverpool crown court in June 2000.

The other worker, David Jones, was acquitted of 20 charges of
physical and sexual abuse of children, including the prisoner, in
December 2000.

Both workers were employed at approved schools on

Source:- The Daily Telegraph Wednesday 19 February page

Guardian Society

Image of the future

They may have been viewed with suspicion when they started to
arrive, but the invaluable and lasting role of the overseas workers
propping up Britain’s public services is now recognised by staff
and management alike.

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 19 February page


New Post Office system ‘won’t work’ for visually

The Royal National Institute of the Blind has criticised the
Post Office’s plans to install automated machines at counters that
it says people with sight problems will not be able to use.

The machines are designed to give people access to their
benefits and pensions, but the RNIB has warned that its screen pad
and keyboard markings are too small.

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 19 February page

Scene stealers

A pioneering venture between two theatre groups, one of them for
disabled people, is bringing a new twist to an old favourite.

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 19 February page

Matter of trust

Charities risk losing public confidence by using and paying
trustee-linked companies

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 19 February page

Full Capacity

You could end up in legal limbo if your ability to make
decisions is damaged

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 19 February page

Individual opportunist

Small autism charity with big vision marks 50 years of work

Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 19 February page

Scottish newspapers

Parents sue over Labour’s nursery

Almost 9,000 three-year-old children across Scotland do not have
access to a free nursery place – despite Labour’s claim
that improving pre-school education has been its biggest
achievement since devolution.

Local authorities now face legal action from parents infuriated
by this failure to provide promised places.

Source:-The Scotsman Wednesday 19 February pages 1, 8
and 17

Race fury over boy aged five

A five-year-old boy has been taken into care after covering
young asylum seeker classmates with white paint in a racist

He daubed the paint on the faces and hands of three children
from refugee families during a lesson at a Glasgow nursery

The five-year-old is said to have told nursery teachers:
‘I am white and if they want to be in my country they should
be white too’.

Source:- Daily Express Wednesday 19 February page 2

Hitting Back

Julie Black was dragged around by her hair and had her head
smashed against a wall during one incident of domestic

She is using her experiences to counsel other victims of abuse
with Scottish Women’s Aid. Julie’s story is one of the
themes highlighted by BBC’s ‘Hitting Home’
campaign, broadcast this week.

Source:- Daily Record Wednesday 19 February page 8

Cathy Comes Home

On the face of it, education minister Cathy Jamieson might
appear to be the epitome of the trendy-lefty stereotype: a former
social worker and a vegan, who wears sensible shoes and plain
trouser suits.

She is ‘old’ Labour rather than part of the
modernising wing associated with the Wendy Alexanders or Tessa
Jowells of this world.

Source:- The Herald Wednesday 19 February page 14

Welsh newspapers

Rachel’s jailed boyfriend will appeal

The Turkish barman yesterday jailed for five years for the
statutory rape of a runaway Welsh schoolgirl, says he will appeal
against conviction.

Rachel Lloyd was 14 when she met Mehmet Ocak while on holiday in
Turkey. She later ran away from her home in Wrexham in an attempt
to marry him.

The teenager who attended court to support her boyfriend said
she would wait for him to be released so that she could resume the

Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 19 February pages 1 and

Pupil ‘silenced’ by suicide

The Clywch child abuse inquiry has been told by a former pupil
of alleged paedophile, John Owen, that the drama teacher had
threatened to kill himself, if the boy spoke out about the

Owen killed himself in 2001just before he was due to stand trial
on charges of indecency against boys in his care between 1974 and
1991. The inquiry was set up in the wake of his suicide by the
Children’s Commissioner for Wales Peter Clarke to investigate
the handling of sexual abuse allegations against Owen.

Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 19 February page 7

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