Wednesday 5 November 2003

By Amy Taylor, Clare Jerrom and Alex Dobson.
Soham jurors order to put prejudice aside

The prosecution will begin to make their case today against Ian
Huntley, who stands accused of murdering the schoolgirls Jessica
Chapman and Holly Wells.
Maxine Carr, Huntley’s former girlfriend, is accused of conspiring
to pervert the course of justice and two counts of assisting an
The pair deny all the charges against them.
As the jury were sworn in yesterday the judge said it would be
naïve to expect them to not have previously heard something
about the case. He went on to instruct them to put aside emotion
and prejudice, and focus soley on the evidence put before
Source:- The Independent Wednesday 5 November page 3
Auditor to save public sector £24m
Councils will be given greater freedom from the government if
proposals put forward in a new report from the Audit Commission are
The body, which is responsible for ensuring local councils are run
cost effectively, proposes reducing the amount of inspections it
carries out creating a saving of £24 million. It goes on to
call on the government to introduce legislation to cut bureaucracy
across councils.
Source:- The Times Wednesday 5 November page 2
Judge risks censure for freeing paedophile
A judge has let a paedophile walk from court while admitting that
he would be vilified for his actions by man’s the victims.
Judge Dennis Clark, sitting at Liverpool crown court, went on to
explain his reasoning to George Boothroyd’s two female
The women were aged seven and 12 when Boothroyd sexually abused
The judge said he had decided to give their attacker a three-year
probation order after he admitted three offences dating back to
1986 and 1990 as he had already spent 12 months in jail on remand.
The judge added that if he imposed a prison sentence Boothroyd
would be released within months.
Source:- The Times Wednesday 5 November page 5
Call on EU track paedophiles
The NSPCC is due to ask the European commission to make
plans to create an EU-wide sex offenders’ register to track
paedophiles’ movement and prevent them from getting jobs
working with children.
Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 5 November page 9
Police act on ‘Gypsy bonfire’
The chairperson of the Firle Bonfire society, which ritually burned
a caravan with Gypsies painted on it as part of some bonfire
celebrations, is to be interviewed by Sussex Police.
Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 5 November page 8
A bitter pill to swallow
A significant number of older people are still receiving
inappropriate amounts of medication, according to a new
The research, by Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Paul Burstow,
estimates that up to 37,000 people in nursing and residential homes
across Britain may have been incorrectly prescribed anti-psychotic
drugs for severe psychiatric illness that they do not need.
Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 5 November page 4
Pictures of hope
A week-long exhibition of 100 posters of missing people will
feature in an exhibition organised by the charity National Missing
Persons Helpline in partnership with ‘Useful
Photography’ magazine.
Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 5 November page 4
Lesson from America
Can a US healthcare company help save the NHS from choking under
the weight of chronic disease and bed blocking?
Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 5 November page 6
A matter of choice
Chris Arnot on an integrated housing scheme where elderly residents
can live as couples, independently or under care
Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 5 November page 7
A piece of the action
Activists are calling for the closure of major disability
charities. Gideon Burrows finds out why
Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 5 November page 10
Municipal Mare
The Improvement and Development Agency can lead councils to the
trough of better services, but can it make them drink?
Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 5 November page 14
What else can I do?
Jeanette, an estate manager for a local authority, wants a change
of scene, a challenge and more responsibility. Kendra Inman
suggests new pathways
Source:- Guardian Society Wednesday 5 November page 128
Scottish newspapers
Children caught in the adoption trap

Half of the children waiting for adoption in Scotland are unable to
find families to care for them, figures showed yesterday.
Between 400 and 600 children north of the border were in need of a
new home at any one time, according to the British Association for
Adoption and Fostering. Some children were harder to place than
others, but the organisation fears the system was letting them
The Scottish executive is currently reviewing the law governing
adoption to see how the situation can be improved.
Source:- The Herald Wednesday 5 November
Residents’ fury at plan for secure

Health officials were savaged by local residents last night over
plans to site a controversial secure unit on their doorstep.
A panel of six health experts were continually barracked and
interrupted when attempting to answer questions about their plans
for the “mini Carstairs” in Lanarkshire. Professor
George Irving, the chairperson of the West of Scotland Secure care
centre steering group, warned that the meeting could be halted as a
result of the interruptions.
The residents fears focused on how two sites in Boswell and
Uddington were chosen, along with a site in Paisley, from 27
originally selected for the 36 bed unit for sexual and violent
offenders with mental health problems, and the potential
consequences for the communities if the project proceeds.
Source:- The Herald Wednesday 5 November
Scots back kids’ smack
Scottish parents are more likely to smack their children than their
English counterparts, a survey revealed yesterday.
Around 71 per cent of parents physically disciplined toddlers in
Scotland compared to the UK average of 57 per cent, the poll for
‘Mother and Baby’ magazine found.
Source:- Daily Record Wednesday 5 November
Prison deal condemned
A £126 million deal for a private security firm to
escort prisoners to Scottish courts, was attacked last night by the
Prison Officers’ Association.
Cathy Jamieson, the justice minister, said the contract with
Reliance Secure Task Management will allow prison staff and police
to carry out their other duties.
But the Prison Officers’ Association Scotland said they
feared security could suffer.
Source:- Daily Record Wednesday 5 November
Welsh newspapers
‘Break deadly cycle of drugs’

A two page-feature looking at the increasing incidence of drug
addiction in Gwent, in south Wales.
Newport West MP Paul Flynn, a campaigner for reform of drug laws in
the UK, said that figures for waiting times for drug rehabilitation
treatment in the county are among the worst in the country.
Newport’s chief superintendent Kevin Price said that there
has been an increase in street robberies as a result of drug use,
and added that there are still extremely limited numbers of beds
available throughout Wales to offer treatment and support for
individuals addicted to drugs.
Source:- South Wales Argus Tuesday 4 November pages 16-17
‘Lost pupils’ let down by Welsh

Up to half of all children leaving education are ill-equipped for
work, and feel helpless according to new research.
‘The Lost Children of Wales’ report, by educational
research organisation, Resolv, said there are significant numbers
of children who are neither high achievers nor special needs
pupils, who are disengaged from the education system and leave
school at 16 without the skills to succeed in the work place.
Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 5 November page 1
Action for the sake of our children
On the day that the Welsh assembly is due to debate the
children’s commissioner for Wales’ hard-hitting annual
report, Peter Clarke outlines what he sees as the key issues facing
children in Wales – and what needs to be done about
He said that problems with mental health services for children are
among the priorities in his second annual report, and he calls on
the assembly to ring fence money for specific objectives to improve
children’s lives.
Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 5 November page 10

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