Tuesday 25 November 2003

By Clare Jerrom and Alex Dobson.
No 10 audit posts crime and poverty warning

Persistent poverty, high crime and low productivity are some of the
largest problems facing Britain, according to a strategic audit by
Tony Blair’s policy chief.
The discussion document by the cabinet office’s strategy
unit, headed by Geoff Mulgan, aims to outline the challenges facing
the country in the next decade.
According to the audit, the country faces a relatively high level
of crime. Widening regional and income inequalities and a legacy of
under achievement in skills and vocational qualifications. On some
measures such as teenage pregnancy the UK does so badly it is in a
class of its own.
Source:- Financial Times Tuesday 25 November page 2
Welfare to work system criticised
Government advisers claimed that the number of incentives to move
people from welfare to work is so high that the system is becoming
“As the number of pilots, pathfinders and local initiatives
proliferate, evaluation becomes more complex and programme outcomes
harder to pin down,” the social security advisory committee
said in its annual report.
The committee will take a closer look at the Social Fund, which
provides grants and loans to the least well off.
Source:- Financial Times Tuesday 25 November page 4
Risky sex blamed for rise in HIV infections
The number of people infected with the HIV virus rose by almost one
fifth last year.
High-risk sexual activity by gay and bisexual men was the principal
reason, according to the Health Protection Agency.
Source:- Financial Times Tuesday 25 November page 4
Top civil servant to be named chief of new NHS

The post of the new chief executive of the Commission for
Healthcare Audit and Inspection is to be given to a top civil
servant with no experience of healthcare but with considerable
skills in regulation.
The appointment of Anna Walker, director general of the land use
and rural affairs at the Department of Environment, Food and Rural
Affairs (DEFRA) adds credence to claims that the new inspectorate
plans to adopt a different approach to its predecessor, the
Commission for Health Improvement, which CHAI will replace in
Source:- Financial Times  Tuesday 25 November page 6
Asylum hitch
Plans to introduce accommodation centres for asylum seekers have
been delayed by a planning appeal into whether an airfield base
near Nottingham should be used for the second establishment.
John Prescott, the deputy prime minister, has postponed his
decision on RAF Newton until next year.
Source:- The Times Tuesday 25 November page 2
DNA link uncovers suspects in 64 crimes
Police have charged suspects with 64 unsolved crimes including
robbery and murder after taking DNA samples from prisoners and
offenders with mental health problems.
A further 78 outstanding crimes are being investigated after the
DNA profiling of 3,722 offenders who had previously avoided being
on the national database.
Police have brought charges relating to unsolved crimes including
the murder of a 12-year-old girl in southern England, after they
visited jails in England and Wales to take the DNA samples.
Source:- The Times Tuesday 25 November page 7
Blunkett aims to axe asylum legal aid
David Blunkett plans to “choke off” the flow of legal
aid to asylum seekers on Thursday as part of his new “tough
as old boots” immigration bill.
The move is in addition to the home secretary’s threat to
take into care the children of rejected asylum seekers who fail to
leave the country, and to restrict the appeal rights in all
immigration and asylum cases to a single hearing.
Source:- The Guardian Tuesday 25 November page 1
Huntley cut off girls’ clothing, admits

Ian Huntley cut the clothing from the bodies of Holly Wells and
Jessica Chapman as they lay in a remote ditch, his lawyer admitted
Huntley denies murdering the girls from Soham in Cambridgeshire,
but has admitted conspiring to pervert the course of justice.
Source:- The Guardian Tuesday 25 November page 2
Benefits staff threaten strike
Jobcentre and benefit staff across the UK have threatened
strike action after rejecting a 2.6 per cent pay offer.
Source:- The Guardian Tuesday 25 November page 10
Therapies ‘help MS sufferers’
Complementary therapies such as t’ai chi and fish
oil have been recommended for the first time by a government
advisory body in a report on the care of multiple sclerosis
The National Institute of Clinical Excellence says that seven
alternative therapies might be worth trying, but warns patients to
be aware of the costs and any risks.
Source:- Daily Telegraph Tuesday 25 November page 2
Iraqi refugees should return, says Blunkett
David Blunkettt said yesterday that Iraqi asylum seekers should be
made to return home now that the Kurdish run area in the north of
the country is “generally overwhelmingly safe”.
The home secretary said refugees who fled to Britain should go back
to help reconstruct their country.
Source:- Daily Telegraph Tuesday 25 November page 9
Sniffer dogs called in to fight drugs in

Sniffer dogs and scanners designed for use against terrorists are
to be used in a pilot project in Kent to search for drugs.
Under the scheme, developed by the council and police, dogs and
their handlers have visited 10 schools to subject pupils to
unannounced spot checks.
Checks on desks, lockers, classrooms and school buses will now be
checked for drugs with £30,000 Ion Tracker Tester equipment
originally designed to detect explosives at airports.
The Department for Education and Skills yesterday condemned the use
of the equipment as “not really appropriate”.
Source:- Daily Telegraph Tuesday 25 November page 13
Jackson sets up website to proclaim his

Michael Jackson set up a special website yesterday to proclaim his
innocence and provide a direct line of communication to his
In a signed letter on the website, the singer, who faces criminal
charges and a possible trial for alleged molestation of a
12-year-old boy at his ranch, said people were claiming to speak on
his behalf, but had no authorisation from him.
Source:- The Independent Tuesday 25 November page 2
Emergency staff face alcohol-related

Campaigners warned yesterday that overstretched emergency services
are being put under intense pressure because of binge drinking and
alcohol abuse.
Police, ambulance and accident and emergency staff said they often
faced violence at weekends from binge drinkers.
Source:- The Independent Tuesday 25 November page 6
Scottish newspapers
Suspect Luke ‘has to get out of town’

The boyfriend of murdered schoolgirl Jodi Jones will be forced to
flee his home after being named as the sole suspect for her murder,
his lawyer claimed yesterday.
Nigel Beaumont said Luke Mitchell’s life had been ruined by
revelations in a report to the procurator fiscal from police.
The 15-year-old is named in the investigation into his
girlfriend’s death. Scotland’s law bosses were
considering the report yesterday before deciding whether to bring
any charges.
Source:- Daily Record Tuesday 25 November page 1
A three-year-old girl died in hospital after it emerged there were
no rooms available in a life saving ward.
Kristal Melrose was suffering from sickness, diarrhoea, a swollen
face and low temperature and as her condition deteriorated, her
mother, Jackie, was told her daughter needed to be transferred to a
high dependency unit at Edinburgh’s Sick Kids hospital.
However, doctors said no beds were free to treat the child for the
suspected virus and six hours later she suffered a seizure and
Source:- Daily Record Tuesday 25 November page 1
Council: national anthem too racist for

The national anthem God Save the Queen has been dropped from
refugee’s citizenship ceremonies in Glasgow because it is
deemed too racist for Scots.
The union flag will also not be present at the events because of
its sectarian undertones, councillors have decided.
Source:- The Scotsman Tuesday 25 November
Council worker wins race claim
A council manager has won a race discrimination claim against
Glasgow Council and been awarded £48,000 in
Clarence Bvunzai was the only black candidate to be interviewed for
the post of unit manager at a residential home for older people,
but was unsuccessful.
The employment tribunal ordered the council to pay £48,681 in
compensation. It is the second time Bvunzai has won a race
discrimination complaint against Glasgow Council.
Source:- The Scotsman Tuesday 25 November
Social worker wage hike
Social workers in Edinburgh are to have their wages
increased in a bid to end the recruitment and retention
Cash incentives will also be offered to frontline staff who obtain
specialist qualifications in a bid to prevent key officials being
poached by higher paying authorities.
Politicians and union leaders expressed fear that low morale in the
wake of the damning report into Caleb Ness’ death would
result in a mass exodus of social workers.
Source:- The Scotsman Tuesday 25 November
Welsh newspapers
Addict’s mother toasts new drive

A mother from south Wales, whose daughter’s life has been
blighted by heroin and crack cocaine, is backing a new project to
help drug addicts.
The Kaleidoscope project based in Newport, opened last week and
offers almost immediate treatment for heroin addiction. There have
been repeated calls for more support for addicts in the area.
Carol Pringle whose daughter Sarah is currently serving four years
for an armed robbery that she committed to fund her addiction, said
that the new service will help addicts to get help when they need
Source:- South Wales Argus Monday 24 November page 13
Special PC jailed for sex with schoolgirl
A special constable has been jailed for six years after having sex
with a schoolgirl that he met on the internet.
Graham Clarke from Barry in south Wales made contact with the
15-year-old girl in an internet chatroom and travelled to the West
Midlands to meet her.
Clarke was seen having sex with the girl by a CCTV camera operator,
and was reported to the police. He jailed for two-and-a-half
Source:- South Wales Echo Monday 24 November pages 1 and 2
Families sue hospitals over body parts
Welsh hospitals are facing legal action from more than 60 families
over claims that they removed and kept body parts without
A high court writ has been issued on behalf of the claimants for
damages in excess of £10 million. The legal action is part of
nationwide organ retention litigation, and the writ that relates to
Welsh cases has been issued against the Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust
and other unnamed trusts in Wales.
Source:- Western Mail Tuesday 25 November page 1
Student’s drama aims to help teens with sex

Children’s charity Barnardo’s Cymru is taking a lead in
educating teenagers about the emotional aspects of sexual
behaviour, by screening a new video, called ‘Offside’,
that explores complex emotional issues.
The 15-minute drama is produced by members of the charity’s
Taith project and Bridgend College’s drama and media
students, and will be used in schools together with an accompanying
book, to promote discussions about how to form healthy
Source:- Western Mail Tuesday 25 November page 7

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