Wednesday 11 February 2004

By Amy Taylor, Natasha Salari, Clare Jerrom and Alex

Truant’s mother faces jail again

The first mother in Britain to be jailed for letting her children
play truant was facing imprisonment again last night after allowing
one child to skip more lessons.

Patricia Amos from Banbury, Oxfordshire, was jailed for a month in
2002. She now faces a return to prison after magistrates heard how
she had given a string of weak excuses as to why her 14-year-old
daughter Jacqueline was continuing to be absent.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 11 February page 7

Mutilated body of sex case teacher found in rubbish

The body of a former teacher who was jailed for sexually abusing
pupils has been found dismembered in Edinburgh.

Police officers found Alan Wilson’s mutilated body hidden beneath
some rubbish in a communal garden in the suburb of

It is thought that he was killed elsewhere several days ago and
then brought to the garden.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 11 February page 9

Accused mothers may be spared trial

Mothers accused of killing their babies could be dealt with outside
the criminal justice system, the new director of public
prosecutions has suggested.

Ken Macdonald QC said “there was an attraction” to the way such
cases are handled in some European countries where they go in front
of a family law panel.

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 11 February page 3

Top judge condemns asylum proposals

Government plans to create a single tier of appeal for asylum
seekers should be dropped, according to the lord chief justice Lord

In a report on the Asylum and Immigration (Treatment of Claimants
etc) Bill, which contains the proposals, the all-party joint human
rights committee of MPs and peers said that it could breach the
Human Rights Act, international law and the fundamental principles
of our common law.

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 11 February page 5

Children’s Fund fights deep cuts

The Children’s Fund is facing a budget cut which threatens to
shut down some children’s charities.

Managers of the chancellor’s flagship Children’s Fund
from across England are today holding a national protest meeting
after receiving an order from the Department for Education and
Skills that they must cut 15 per cent from their 2004 budgets and
30 per cent the year after.

Source: The Guardian Wednesday 11 February page 13

Ministers abandon target of cutting truancy

The government’s target of cutting truancy by 10 per cent is
going to be scrapped.

Ministers plan to switch to a system whereby schools will measure
attendance rates instead of collecting data on
‘authorised’ and ‘unauthorised’ absences
for each half day.

But they deny that the move is designed to enable them to escape
criticism for failing to achieve their target to cut truancy by 10
per cent between 2002 and this year.

Source:- The Independent Wednesday 11 February page

OAP patients who were treated worse than animals

Older patients in a Manchester hospital were treated like
“animals” in an appalling regime of abuse but the
culprits will not face criminal charges or be disciplined.

Men and women in their 70s and 80s were kicked, stamped on,
slapped, starved and mocked by staff at Withington Hospital.

Hospital bosses have admitted responsibility but it was revealed
yesterday that none of the abusers will face criminal charges or
even be disciplined by health service managers.

Six members of staff were suspended when the abuse allegations
first surfaced, but a police investigation had to be dropped
because of the dementia patients’ poor mental health.

Two members of staff were cleared in disciplinary hearings last
year and the other cases have been withdrawn or dropped because the
staff have since left.

Source:- The Daily Mail Wednesday 11 February page

New Deal scheme beset by problems

Poor financial reporting and delays caused by bureaucracy are
hampering the government’s £2 billion programme for
tackling deprivation in England’s poorest regions, according
to the spending watchdog.

A National Audit Office inquiry into the first three years of the
New Deal for Communities concludes that the 10-year programme does
have the potential to narrow the gap between English
neighbourhoods. But prospects for the remaining seven years depend
on the government and its NDC partnerships introducing more
stringent controls on budgets, performance data, communications
strategies and relationships with public bodies.

Source:- The Financial Times Wednesday 11 February page

Look back in wonder

The 1960s: the root of today’s evils or a period of
liberation and enlightenment? A look back on a turbulent decade
with extracts from The Unsung Sixties, an extraordinary oral
history of grassroots social innovation.

Source: Society Guardian Wednesday 11 February page

No holding back

The inquiry into the death of David “Rocky” Bennett at
a secure unit will tomorrow report on the “festering
abscess” of institutional racism in NHS mental health
services. Past and present service users and practitioners share
their experiences.

Source: Society Guardian Wednesday 11 February page

Too little, too late

The Bennett inquiry should go a long way towards addressing
problems in our mental health system. But it won’t go far

Source: Society Guardian Wednesday 11 February page

Moving and shaking

Two upcoming reports, on public sector procurement and
relocating Whitehall, will challenge established management

Source: Society Guardian Wednesday 11 February page

Scottish newspapers

Nursery nurses in new walkout

More than 4,000 nursery nurses went on strike across Scotland
yesterday as part of a long-running pay dispute.

Stirling, Perth and Kinross, South Lanarkshire, Aberdeen, Shetland
and the Highlands and Islands were the only local authorities not
to be hit after resolving their disputes locally.

But despite these local arrangements, public sector union Unison
claimed most nursery nurses still backed the call for a national
pay settlement.

The council umbrella group Cosla said the union’s demands
were unrealistic.

Source:- The Scotsman  Wednesday 11 February

Male nurse struck off after affair with patient

A psychiatric nurse who had a sexual relationship with a patient
with mental health problems was struck off the profession’s
register yesterday.

Paul Smith admitted forming an inappropriate relationship and
misconduct at a Nursing and Midwifery Council hearing in

Source:- The Scotsman  Wednesday 11 February

Children’s czar attacks Dungavel family

Scotland’s first children’s commissioner yesterday
slammed the detention of children at Dungavel asylum centre in

Professor Kathleen Marshall said she did not think children should
be locked up at all and was sure there were better ways to deal
with the situation.

A panel of MSPs yesterday named the former director of the Scottish
Child Law Centre as the new children’s commissioner.

Marshall led the 1999 inquiry into the Edinburgh care homes sex
abuse scandal. Her new role will be to promote and protect the
rights of children by reviewing current law, policy and

Source:- The Herald  Wednesday 11 February

Axe falls on offenders’ boot camp

A project for persistent young offenders is to close following a
Scottish executive decision to withdraw funding.

The executive said Airborne Initiative would not receive its latest
application for £600,000 of funding because it no longer
represented “value for money”.

The so-called “boot camp” was established almost a
decade ago to handle persistent 18-25-year-old offenders who had
not responded to conventional punishment set by the courts.

Source:- The Herald  Wednesday 11 February

My hell as a sex slave in Scotland

A South Korean girl has told of her ordeal as a sex

Kim was among dozens of South Korean girls picked up by London
gangsters in the south western region of Cholla. She worked as a
sex slave in Scotland for six months before her
“masters” left her to return home penniless because
they were sick of her.

Kim is just one of hundreds of women smuggled into Scotland to be
abused by men.

Source:- Daily Record  Wednesday 10 February pages 8 and

Welsh newspapers

Teacher Taped Up Pupil’s Mouth

A teacher taped the mouth of an 11-year-old boy with learning
difficulties to stop him talking in class, it has emerged.

Ben Deacy has special educational needs and was in a small class at
Llanrumney High School in Cardiff when the incident occurred. He
was sent home with a report from the teacher that read
“excellent work-once I taped his mouth up”.

The school’s headteacher has issued an apology and is
considering taking action against the staff member.

Source:- South Wales Echo Tuesday 10 February pages 1 and

Exposed Sham of our Euro millions

The European aid programme to regenerate some of Wales’
poorest communities is to be exposed as a sham.

According to Plaid Cymru MP Adam Price, confidential figures due to
be released today show that the first three years of Objective One
funding have not lived up to expectations.

He said that the average annual spend on Objective One in west
Wales and the Valleys has been almost 50 per cent les than was
pledged before the start of the programme.

Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 11 February page 1

Patient’s ‘wrongly paying

Older and disabled people in Wales are being forced to pay
thousands of pounds for free NHS care, a leading lawyer has

Caroline Greathead said that Welsh health officials have not
complied with a court ruling and are wrongly charging patients for
care home treatment. She said that health authorities and NHS
Trusts must review their criteria and compensate patients who were
wrongly made to pay for their care.

 Source:- Western Mail Wednesday 11 February page 8



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