Paedophile under supervision order raped girl of nine
A known paedophile was able to rape a nine-year-old girl despite being under community supervision, a court heard.
Source:- Daily Mail, Saturday 11 March 2006, page 12

Muslim peer plans to open 20 schools for all races and faiths
Leading British Muslim Lord Bhatia is planning to open 20 schools in an ambitious contribution to the government’s city academy programme. The independent peer said he had lined up some corporate sponsors to contribute to the £50m in private finance the project required.
Source:- Financial Times, Saturday 11 March 2006, page 2    

Charities try Ebay as shop sales fall
Hundreds of charity shops are turning to internet auction site eBay to offset the reduction in sales and donations caused by people buying and selling online. Many good causes have experienced a drop in the quality and quantity of items donated to their high-street stores as people switch to the web to dispose of unwanted goods.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Saturday 11 March 2006, page 1

School wouldn’t put plaster on a cut finger
Staff at a Somerset primary school would not put a plaster on a nine-year-old girl’s bleeding finger for health and safety reasons. There were no plasters at the school due to council guidelines to avoid allergic reactions to latex in plasters.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Saturday 11 March 2006, page 1

Begging letters ask pensioners to send money back
Tens of thousands of elderly people who received overpayments of pension credit due to government blunders are to receive a “begging letter” from ministers asking if they would mind sending the money back voluntarily.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Saturday 11 March 2006, page 2

Churchill captured in straitjacket
A statue of Sir Winston Churchill in a straitjacket was unveiled in Norwich by mental health charity Rethink, despite opposition from the wartime leader’s family.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Saturday 11 March 2006, page 2

Hewitt seeks £56,000 speechwriter as NHS debt soars over £800m
Health secretary Patricia Hewitt is to hire a personal speechwriter to overhaul the flagging reputation of government health policy as deficits in the NHS continue to soar.
Source:- The Times, Saturday 11 March 2006, page 11

Doctors may not treat child if judge backs life support
Doctors caring for a terminally ill boy have told his parents that they may refuse him as a patient if a court denies them the right to switch off his life support. The care required to keep the 18-month-old boy, known only as MB, is unethical and should never have been offered.
Source:- The Times, Saturday 11 March 2006, page 14

Asbos don’t work
Children’s commissioner Al Aynsley-Green  has told the Home Office that antisocial behaviour orders don’t work because they are regarded as status symbols by young offenders.
Source:- Mail on Sunday, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 47

School learns sign language
An entire primary school in Devon has learned sign language to help a deaf new pupil settle in.
Source:- Mail on Sunday, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 49

Judges told slash jail terms for rapists
The Sentencing Guidelines Council is to recommend that future sentences for rape and other sexual offences be cut by 15 per cent for most offenders. The news comes days before an official campaign against rape is launched by the government.
Source:- Observer, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 1

Teenage terror
Most young people live in fear of being shot or attacked, according to shocking research that reveals the extent of teen-on-teen violence in Britain today, to be published by journal Children and Society next month.
Source:-Independent on Sunday, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 8

Tanorexic teenagers face sunbed ban
The European Commission is planning new controls on sunbeds following a ruling by an EU panel of experts that anyone under 18, as well as people with a greater risk of getting skin cancer, should not be allowed to use sunbeds on medical grounds.
Source:-Independent on Sunday, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 19

Sarah Payne’s killer in plea for early release
In 2001 Roy Whiting was found guilty of Sarah Payne’s murder and sentenced to 50 years in prison. Now new court documents reveal that he could be at liberty far sooner.
Source:- Observer, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 9

Fathers fight for family flexitime
Growing numbers of men are rejecting the culture of working long hours according to a new TUC study, OUt of time: why Britain needs a new approach to working-time flexibility, published this week.
Source:- Observer, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 15

200,000 in lone-parent tax scam
The government is paying out tax credits or unemployment benefit to 200,000 more “lone parents” than actually live in the UK, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies.
Source:- Observer, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 17

Campaign to ease pain of disasters
A couple who lost their daughter, Emily Jenkins, in the London bombings last year have launched a campaign in her name to help find people missing after such disasters.
Source:- Observer, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 23

Honours for loans
Chief executive of the Priory healthcare group Chai Patel says Labour is concealing money given by wealthy backers who are then nominated for peerages.
Source:- Sunday Times, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 1

Banned depression tablets still prescribed to children
Banned antidepressants are being handed out to thousands of children by doctors because they face waits of up to 10 months to see a psychiatrist, a survey by Pulse magazine has found.
Source:- Sunday Telegraph, Sunday 12 March 2006, page 10

Living will protest
The family of a 94-year-old woman who is deaf and confined to a wheelchair has protested to the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital after doctors fitted her with a pacemaker. Dorothy Freeman had drawn up a “living will” saying she did not want medical intervention to keep her alive if she were seriously ill.
Source:- The Times, Monday 13 March 2006, page 4

DIY fan gets Asbo
A man has been placed under an Asbo that bans him from using power tools for six years by Cardiff magistrates’ court.
Source:- The Times, Monday 13 March 2006, page 4

Bars and brewers unite against bingeing
The drinks industry’s “responsible drinking” watchdog, the Portman Group, is to be downsized and largely replaced by a better-funded campaigning charity. Retailers and producers hope the new body, involving health, counselling and policing groups, will head off government proposals for a “binge-drinking”.
Source:- The Guardian, Monday 13 March 2006, page 27

We’re no Vicky Pollards
So say the pregnant girls given £100,000 lessons on mothering.
Source:- The Daily Mail, Monday 13 March 2006, page 21

Swing in poor families’ incomes may explain flagship policy problem
The incomes of poor families swing more violently than previously assumed, which could explain why Gordon Brown’s flagship tax credit policy to help the less well-off ran into trouble, says a study by the Institute of Fiscal Studies. The relaunch of the tax credit scheme in 2003 produced huge overpayments that created hardship for families and a political furore when the Treasury and Customs & Revenue tried to claw payments back.
Source:- The Financial Times, Monday 13 March 2006, page 2

Scottish news

Call to merge public sector czar posts
Scotland’s public sector czars would face redundancy under plans to merge their functions.
Des McNulty, convener of Holyrood’s finance committee, has proposed that the post of commissioner for freedom of information should be combined post of citizens’ rights commissioner.
Whoever takes the role should take control of the task of the public services ombudsman, Professor Alice Brown, he said.
Czars covering public services, freedom of information, parliamentary standards, public appointments and the rights of children account for total annual budgets of about £5.5m.
The plan would also bring into the new role the function of the human rights commissioner. That position has not yet been created, as the executive bill creating it has been stalled in parliament by an unprecedented committee report warning the case for the post has not been made.
Mr McNulty said: “It’s easy to create a body and they’re very hard to get rid of. We need to keep asking if
Holyrood’s finance committee will soon start an inquiry into whether Scotland’s czars provide value for money and operate
Source:- Scottish Herald, Monday 13 March 2006

Older people should put themselves forward
Peter Martin is 67 but still sees himself as a young person.
Source:- Scottish Herald, Monday 13 March 2006

Child protection policies reformed after abuse cases on islands
Social workers and police in Lewis look have tightened child protection rules following an inquiry into three cases involving girls.
Source:- The Scotsman, Monday 13 March 2006

Welsh news

Poverty policy has no significant impact
Independent assessors have found the Assembly Government’s anti-poverty initiative has had little effect during its first three years of operation.
A report, produced by Cambridge Policy Consultants last June, finds that apart from a small number of partnerships the Communities First programme had not resulted in any substantial regeneration outcomes.
Source:- Western Mail, Saturday 11 March 2006

Boy’s tears at Ben death report
One of the three teenagers accused of murdering student Ben Bellamy began crying when he saw a report about the murder on television Swansea crown court heard yesterday.
The 17-year-old’s body was found on a beach in Swansea last September.
He was walking home from Cinderella’s night club late at night in September when three teenagers attacked him and dragged him to Swansea Bay where he drowned, the jury was told.
Source:- Western Mail, Saturday 11 March 2006











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