Pensioners ready to risk jail over council tax boycott
Pensioners’ groups have threatened a nationwide boycott of the council tax next year unless the government takes more account of their ability to pay. Protesters demonstrated on Friday outside the Whitehall office of John Prescott.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Saturday 1 April 2006, page 2
PE stands for Particularly Easy at GCSE
Some GCSEs are easier than others, despite official claims that each subject is equally difficult, researchers at Durham University have concluded.
Source:- The Times, Saturday 1 April 2006, page 27

Children of mothers in their twenties struggle at school
The children of women who have their first child in their early twenties appear to do much worse at school than those born to teenage or older mothers, according to Cardiff University research.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Saturday 1 April 2006, page 7

Figures on racist crime botched
An alarming government report claiming a 12 per cent rise in racist crimes was withdrawn amid evidence of serious errors in the research. An investigation showed a third of the statistics cited by the Home Office for individual police forces were wrong.
Source:- Daily Mail, Saturday 1 April 2006, page 37

Blind people forced to pay for their own white sticks
White sticks should be supplied by councils’ social services departments. Yet more than three in ten people with severe vision problems have had to pay for their white canes from their own pockets because local authorities can’t afford them, according to a survey by the RNIB.
Source:- Mail on Sunday, 2 April 2006, page 16

New drugs for hyperactive children raise doctors’  fears
Doctors have criticised official guidelines recommending new drugs to treat attention deficit disorder in young people. One of the two new drugs approved by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence has been linked to a rise in suicidal thoughts in children – a point not mentioned in the guidance. The move to widen the recommended range of drugs – by adding Dexedrine and Strattera to the sole previous prescription, Ritalin, was described by critics as “deeply irresponsible.”
Source:- Sunday Telegraph, 2 April 2006, page 10

Shocking toll of under 11s expelled for drug abuse
Hundreds of children are being expelled from primary school after being caught with drugs or alcohol, a survey by the Mail on Sunday indicates.
Source:- Mail on Sunday, 2 April 2006, page 19

Scandal of advertisers who pose as young children on net chatrooms
Children as young as five are being exposed to a marketing blitz by “agents” working for multinational companies who log onto internet chatrooms and pretend to be other youngsters, says the National Consumer Council. It says it has evidence companies selling computer games, cosmetics and clothes are evading strict advertising guidelines.
Source:- Mail on Sunday, 2 April 2006, page 27

Army of counsellors for Labour’s casino addicts
Local councils bidding for government casino licences plan to use an army of taxpayer-funded counsellors for problem gamblers, the Mail on Sunday can reveal.
Source:- Mail on Sunday, 2 April 2006, page 35

Boy, 15, charged with supermarket rape
Police yesterday charged a 15-year-old boy with four sex offences, including the rape of an 11-year-old girl in a supermarket lavatory.
Source:- Sunday Telegraph, 2 April 2006, page 2

‘Too posh to push’ mothers cost NHS £80 million
The NHS is spending more than £80 million a year carrying out Caesarean sections that are not medically necessary, according to a new book, Caesarean Birth in Britain.
Source:- Sunday Telegraph, 2 April 2006, page 12

Charity ‘wasted’ £250,000 aiding accused schoolboy
The Children’s Legal Centre has been accused of “wasting” £250,000 of taxpayers’ money by helping a pupil to sue his school after he had been excluded for alleged arson.
Source:- Sunday Times, 2 April 2006, page 9

Number of children treated for nut allergies soars
The number of children treated for life-threatening allergies to peanuts and other foods have more than doubled in five years, according to government research.
Source:- Sunday Times, 2 April 2006, page 14

Raped, beaten and helpless: UK’s sex slaves
The launch of the new Serious and Organised Crime Agency, the British FBI, tomorrow is a major step in the fight against human trafficking – high on its agenda is the plight of thousands of women brought into Britain to sell sex. A report on the attempts being made to help the victims who came here believing a better life awaited them.
Source: Observer, Sunday 2 April 2006, page 14

700,000 children are obese
More than half a million British schoolchildren are obese, according to a major new study by the International Obesity Taskforce.
Source: Independent on Sunday, 2 April 2006, page 4

Home Office retreats on probation reform
Criticisms lead to delay in use of private firms and there will be rigorous assessment plan to help failing areas
Source:- The Guardian, Monday 3 April 2006, page 11

Doctors say NHS must charge for care
An open letter from 900 NHS doctors to be delivered to Tony Blair today warns that the health service cannot survive in its present form and that individuals should expect to pay for treatment in the future.
Source:- The Guardian, Monday 3 April 2006, page 1

Victims of crime are given rights
Victims of crime have a statutory right to be informed about the progress of their case under a code of practice that becomes law today.
Source:- The Times, Monday 3 April 2006, page 4

New city academies for 33,000 students
The largest and most expensive project to date for establishing new city academies will be announced today by a further education college.
Source:- The Times, Monday 3 April 2006, page 5

BBC’s radio for gypsies
The BBC is launching a radio show specifically for gypsies. The two-hour weekly programmes will be produced “by and for the travelling community.”
Source:- The Daily Mail, Monday 3 April 2006, page 5

Grandparents carry out bulk of child care duties
Families are increasingly relying on grandparents to look after their children instead of nurseries, official research shows.
Source:- The Daily Mail, Monday 3 April 2006, page 8

Is this care?
Mary is 90. She has Alzheimer’s and is in a care home. Her sister changed her filthy top and found these horrific bruises…is this care?
Source:- The Sun, Monday 3 April 2006, page 24

Purge on asylum seekers leaves violent criminals on streets, says MP
Rob Wilson, Conservative MP for Reading East, says attempts by police to rid the streets of violent criminals who control the drug trade and prostitution are constantly frustrated because the government has focused its performance targets on removing failed asylum seekers, who are often simply economic migrants.
Source:- The Daily Telegraph, Monday 3 April 2006, page 10

Scottish news

Legal move to allay fear of abuse for elderly and vulnerable
Vulnerable adults and the elderly will be protected from abuse under new laws to be introduced by the Scottish executive.
The executive became the first government in the UK to introduce legislation to protect older people. The Adult Support and Protection Bill will require social workers and other bodies to investigate and prevent abuse of adults.
It will create “adult protection committees” to oversee policies at local level and give specialists powers to carry out assessments of adults at risk of abuse.
Source:- The Scotsman, Saturday 1 April 2006

McConnell rebuts top Catholic’s claim on adoptions
First minister Jack McConnell has criticised claims by one of Scotland’s most senior Roman Catholics that he heads a group of “politically correct zealots” supporting legislation which will allow homosexual couples to adopt.In a strongly worded letter to the bishop of Motherwell, McConnell denied the Scottish executive was giving in to political correctness by pushing ahead with reforms to give gay couples the same rights to adopt as married couples.
The Adoption (Scotland) Bill, which was published last week, is aimed at providing more stability for children who cannot live with their original families, while being flexible enough to cater for the needs of individual children.
Source:- The Herald, Monday 3 April 2006

Police launch month-long blitz in bid to catch violent offenders
Police will begin rounding up thousands of violent criminals under a one-month “blitz” according to the Scotsman.
The country’s eight police forces have been told to prioritise all 8,000 outstanding warrants for violence over other crimes in a bid to rein in offenders.
The move is part of a 12-month campaign, called Safer Scotland, which will also include a knife amnesty, beginning in May, and initiatives targeted at addressing the links between alcohol and violence.
Source:- The Scotsman, Monday 3 April 2006

Vigilante group forces sex offender to flee city home
A vigilante group forced a man convicted of sexual offences from his Leith home after a community meeting. A crowd of people gathered on Thursday evening in front of where the man was staying in north Leith and hurled abuse.
Police had to be called out to William Dunsmore rescue William Dunsmore after soeme of the group managed to kick in the door of the flat. Dunsmore and the tenant of the flat, who is believed to be his daughter, had to be moved to temporary accommodation.
Source:- The Scotsman, Monday 3 April 2006

Welsh news

Carer stole to fund gambling habit
A carer stole £45,000 from the 92-year-old woman she was caring for, a court heard yesterday. Wendy Jones, who stole the cash to fund a secret gambling addiction, had been employed at a private care home despite previous convictions and a prison sentence for dishonesty.
Source:- Western Mail, Saturday 1 April 2006







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