Friday 20 August

By Amy Taylor, Clare Jerrom and Alex Dobson

Long-term benefits spurred labour market exodus

More than 500,000 men of were spurred to leave employment during
the 1990s due to generous disability benefits according to a Bank
of England report.

The report states that the decline in the male employment rate is
particularly evident within least-educated men whose jobs were in
danger. It adds that when members of this group became unemployed
they seemed to have chosen to claim long-term benefits rather than
re-enter the job market.

Source:- Financial Times, Friday, 20 August, page 2

Antidepressants linked to surge in death rates

There has been an increase in death rates in people taking the
anti-depressant drug venlafaxine it was revealed in government
figures yesterday.

There were 118 deaths associated with venlafaxine between 1993 and

This is a much higher number than rates for other “new
generation” selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
such as Prozac.

Source:- The Times, Friday, 20 August, page 4

Plight of London’s hidden prostitutes

More than 8,000 women are working as prostitutes in the
“off-street” sex trade in London, according to new

The study, published by the Poppy Project, which supports women
trying to leave the industry, covered women that work as
prostitutes in flats, saunas and massage parlours and through
escort agencies.

Four-fifths of those covered were from overseas.

Source:- The Guardian, Friday, 20 August, page 5

Is abortion the new pill?

Women in their 20s are using abortion as a form of birth control in
growing numbers, official figures suggested yesterday.

The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics have
prompted fears that the group now sees unwanted pregnancy as a
minor problem that can easily be resolved.

They show that 13,000 abortions were carried out on girls in the 20
to 24 age groups in the first quarter of last year. A three per
cent increase on the same period in 2002.

Source:- Daily Mail, Friday, 20 August, page 1

13-year-old armed robber gets supervision

A 13-year-old boy who attempted to rob a shop armed with a
sawn-off-shotgun was given a three year supervision and
surveillance order yesterday.

The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had pleaded guilty
at an earlier hearing to attempted robbery and possession of a

The judge at Wolverhampton Crown Court told the boy that if he was
older he would have been sent to jail.

Source:- The Guardian, Friday, 20 August, page 11

Scottish newspapers

Mother of dead baby talks of threats

A woman told the High Court in Forfar how her husband threatened to
find a way of hurting her just hours after her baby son was
allegedly murdered.

Karen Mutch claimed Mohammad Ullah made the threat when she
insisted on going out for the night with friends. She had left her
eight month old son Kyle with her mother and returned the next
morning to discover he was dead.

Ullah denies murdering his step-son. He is also charged with
attempting to pervert the course of justice by contacting his wife
and offering her an inducement of £5,000 to testify falsely
that she had witnessed Marlane Low assault Kyle.

He had lodged two defences. One of incrimination claiming that if
there was a murder, it was committed by Low and the second defence
is an alibi whereby he claims he was at a café when the
assault took place.

Source:- The Scotsman  Friday 20 August

Watchdog to report on abuse inquiry handling

Councils are set to be presented in October with the results if an
independent study into Western Isles Council’s handling of a
child abuse investigation that collapsed.

The Scottish executive’s Social Work Services Inspectorate
were called into the council to seek independent scrutiny of the
actions the council took during the case which was dropped by the
Crown Office last month when it decided there was not enough
evidence to prosecute.

The SWSI yesterday presented an interim report to the
council’s inter-agency Child Protection Committee although no
recommendations or conclusions have yet been made.

Seven men and a woman appeared in court last year accused of sex
offences against three girls under-16 on the island of Lewis.

Source:- The Scotsman  Friday 20 August

Heroin supply pair jailed for 21 years

Two men were jailed for 21 years each yesterday as a judge warned
it was time to “redress the balance” against drug

Robert Campbell and Joseph Wright ran their Glasgow and Liverpool
ends of the scheme to send bulk supplies of heroin worth more than
£2 million to Scotland where they were cut into smaller
amounts for distribution.

At the High Court in Edinburgh, Lord Hardie told the men that they
had been involved in a major drug dealing operation and that he
wanted to send out a clear message that penalties for such crimes
would be significant.

Source:- The Scotsman  Friday 20 August

Australia tries to lure social workers

Council chiefs from Australia are attempting to lure social work
staff from Scotland to go and work over there.

Local government officials from Canberra will be interviewing in
Glasgow next month in an attempt to hire experienced child
protection staff.

At least 30 posts in the office for children, youth and family
support are on offer.

Prospective employees are being tempted with promises of
“financial and taxation arrangements” for long-term
migration and support to make temporary hire “as simple as
possible”, including accommodation.

Source:- The Herald  Friday 20 August

‘She would have more rights in

A woman who claims her mother would have more rights in prison than
in a care home is setting up a campaign to call for a reverse to a
policy whereby older people are being isolated behind closed

Older residents in some care homes are being forced to live behind
closed doors under new fire safety regime imposed after the fire at
Rosepark nursing home in Uddingston which killed 14 older

Anne Patrizio whose mother is in a care home in Edinburgh claims
many older people were losing their quality of life and becoming
virtual prisoners. She has written to the health minister Malcolm
Chisholm and the Care Commission to highlight her mother’s

Source:- The Herald  Friday 20 August


Welsh newspapers

Home Alone

A mother left her sleeping child alone while she went out for
the night, a court has been told.

The 41-year-old from Cwmbran in south Wales admitted willingly
abandoning the child who is under ten. Police were alerted by a
phone call that the child was alone in the house and the following
morning, the child’s mother walked into a police station in
the town in a drunk and abusive state and was arrested. The child
is now being cared for by grandparents and sentencing has been
adjourned until next month.

Source South Wales Argus Thursday 19 August page 1

Adoption process letting down Welsh children

The most vulnerable children in Wales are being let down by
local authority care services according to a new study carried out
by a researcher at Cardiff University.

Study author, George Cooney, found that children are missing out on
the chance of adoption because of the ‘inefficient or poor
way’ that prospective parents are dealt with.

Source Western Mail Friday 20 August page 1

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