Friday 28 November 2003

By Amy Taylor, Clare Jerrom and Alex

Move to tag asylum seekers
Asylum seekers could be electronically tagged rather than locked up
under a bill published by home secretary David Blunkett
Blunkett is also proposing to take the children of failed asylum
seekers into care, but insisted that it would only affect a
“handful” of families. This policy does not appear in the new
legislation reducing the risk of Labour rebels opposing the
The bill was published as figures showing that the government has
met the prime minister’s target of halving asylum applications. The
figures have gone from 4,225 applications in September compared to
8,770 last October.
Source:- Financial Times Friday 28 November page 4
School rating too crude, says audit office
A larger amount of social factors such as poverty and
ethnicity should be taken into account when schools are graded on
exam performance, a National Audit Office report published today
The research says that some of the toughest comprehensive schools
would see their position improved if a wider range of issues were
Source:- The Guardian Friday 28 November page 15
Blair: we need instant fines to curb crime
Blair will say today that measures allowing the police to impose
fixed penalty fines for a wider range of offences could be central
to Labour’s third term agenda.
He told ‘The Guardian’ the government has learned that
it must give pre-school education a new priority in order to attack
the source of social inequality.
Source:- The Guardian Friday 28 November page 1
Tearful Carr confronted with evidence against lover, court

The ex-girlfriend of Ian Huntley broke down in tears and protested
his innocence when she was told by police that he had been charged
with murdering Soham school girls Jessica Chapman and Holly Well,
the Old Bailey heard yesterday.
Huntley denies murdering the 10-year-old girls, but has admitted
conspiring to pervert the course of justice. He says the girls died
in an accident in his bathroom.
Carr denies the conspiracy charge and two counts of assisting an
Source:- The Guardian Friday 28 November page 5
Scottish newspapers
£1m plea on Caleb

Social work chiefs have demanded £1 million to implements
measures required following the death of Caleb Ness.
Edinburgh social work department claim they need £1 million to
introduce new policies, which include a review of every child
protection case on their register and more clerical workers to free
up social workers for their frontline duties.
The damning report into Caleb Ness’ death said the
city’s child protection system had failed the
11-week-old-baby “at every level”.
Source:- Daily Record Friday 28 November
Warning as untrained staff take on key roles in care
Standards in care homes are being reduced because
increasing numbers of unqualified staff are taking on key roles,
nursing leaders warned MSPs yesterday.
A lack of funding, which had prompted home closures, had also led
to untrained care assistants being given more responsibility.
Sandra Stark of Ardoch Consulting, which provides specialist advice
to UK care homes, said the sector was facing “a snowstorm of
paper and bureaucracy”, at a forum in Edinburgh organised by
the Royal College of Nursing Scotland.
Source:- The Herald Friday 28 November
Drinking among 13-year-olds doubles
The rates of alcohol consumption among 13-year-old girls have
doubled in just over 10 years, a study of 23,000 youngsters in
Scotland has found.
More than 20 per cent admitted they drank alcohol in the week
before they were questioned, compared with 10 per cent in 1990.
Almost a fifth of 13-year-olds said they drank alcohol once a
The Scottish Schools’ Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance
Misuse Survey also found that there had been little change in drug
misuse since 1998 with 23 per cent of 15-year-olds and 8 per cent
of 13-year-olds admitting to using drugs in the month prior to
Source:- The Scotsman Friday 28 November
OAPs face losing out in bed-blocking blitz
Older people face losing the right to choose which nursing
home they will be sent to after leaving hospital under new measures
to combat bed blocking.
Under the scheme, older people in hospital waiting for a place in a
nursing home of their choice will be sent to the first available
care home place after six weeks. They will then stay at the
designated home until a place at the care home of their choice
becomes free.
The move could mean older people are moved away from family and
friends to the other side of Edinburgh or even elsewhere in the
Lothians if no other places are available.
Source:- Evening News (The Scotsman) Thursday 27 November
Guide for pregnant drug users
A resource pack to ensure pregnant women using drugs receive proper
support and care has been launched by Tom McCabe, deputy minister
for health and community care.
The pack includes guidelines for the support of substance abusers
before, during and after the birth of their children.
The move follows the inquiry into the death of Caleb Ness, whose
mother was a drug addict, and whose father shook him to death in a
flat in Leith.
Source:- Evening News (The Scotsman) Thursday 27 November
£1m to help women victims
The Scottish executive yesterday launched a £1 million fund to
provide support services for women who have been raped, abused,
exploited or sexually assaulted.
Margaret Curran, communities minister, said the funding
demonstrated the executive’s determination to create a safer
Curran also announced extended funding for domestic violence
Source:- Evening News (The Scotsman) Thursday 27 November
Welsh newspapers
Victim makes a brave stand

A victim of bullying has set up a website to help others.
Eighteen-year-old Gemma Lang says she endured bullying throughout
her school life and now has set up her own campaign to help
Her campaign, ‘Full Stop 2 Bullying’, is aimed at
bringing an end to bullying as well as supporting victims.
She said the best way to tackle the problem is to educate teachers,
raise awareness in parents and help children to give each other
peer support.
Source:- South Wales Argus Thursday 27 November page 5
‘Girl used heroin from age of

A man from south Wales who is accused of rape and living off the
earnings of prostitutes, recruited a vulnerable girl by getting her
hooked on heroin, a court has been told.
Benjamin Johnson from Newport is also charged with raping and
abducting the girl. The court was told that Johnson turned the girl
into a prostitute in order to live off her earnings.
But Johnson’s defence counsel argued that the girl had
already been involved with drugs, when she first met Johnson. The
case is continuing.
Source:- South Wales Argus Thursday 27 November page 11
Report families are suffering real trauma
The human cost of the foot and mouth epidemic has been revealed in
a new report.
The report from the Institute for Rural Health based in mid Wales
says that farmers and their families have suffered the sort of
psychological harm normally found among combat soldiers.
The trauma of having to witness the 2001 mass cull of animals has,
according to experts, left many families with depression and post-
traumatic stress.
Source:- Western Mail Friday 28 November page 1

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