From welfare to CO2, Blair keeps the policy initiatives coming

By Mithran Samuel, Derren Hayes and Clare Jerrom

From welfare to CO2, Blair keeps the policy initiatives coming

Prime minister Tony Blair yesterday backed making offenders wear uniforms when carrying out community sentences, in a session in front of the chairs of the House of Commons’ select committees.

Blair also re-iterated plans to get tougher on “problem families” through early intervention schemes that would restrict their liberty and make benefits conditional on their behaviour.

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 7 February 2007 page 12

Minister under fire over NHS maternity strategy

The position of care services minister Ivan Lewis has been called into question after he failed to represent the government at the launch of its new maternity services strategy, an area for which he is responsible.

Lewis has been fighting a decision to close a maternity unit in his constituency but turned down an interview with the BBC because it would not undertake to ask him about the local issue.

He described calls for his resignation as “nonsense”.

Source:- The Guardian Wednesday 7 February 2007 page 13

Half a million old people suffering abuse, says charity

Help the Aged today launches a campaign to raise awareness of elder abuse, amid evidence that knowledge of the issue among the general public is poor.

A survey published today by the charity found a quarter of people felt they could not identify the signs of elder abuse, while one third had never heard of the concept.

Source:- The Daily Telegraph Wednesday 7 February 2007 page 6

Foster mother starved and abused the girls in her care

A couple who were foster parents to over 250 children over 17 years were jailed yesterday for the sexual and physical abuse of girls in their care.

Betty Roe was jailed for four years for child cruelty and Walter Roe for three years for four counts of indecent assault.

Girls in their care were sexually abused, beaten, starved, ritually humiliated and treated as slaves.

Source:- The Daily Telegraph Wednesday 7 February 2007 page 11 

The forgotten generation of women facing a poor old age

One in five older women find it difficult to feed themselves, heat their homes and pay the bills because of the paucity of their pensions, an Age Concern report today claims.

The report says today’s older women are in danger of becoming a “forgotten generation” because the pensions system has penalised them for caring for children and relatives.

Source:- The Daily Mail Wednesday 7 February 2007 page 16

Promise of 50 community hospitals is dropped amid funding crisis

A pledge by ministers to build 50 community hospitals has been quietly shelved, it has emerged, due to ongoing funding difficulties in the NHS.

Last year, health secretary Patricia Hewitt promised £750 million to build a degenerate community hospitals, but so far only one has been awarded funding, along with three smaller clinics, campaigners claim.

Source:- The Times Wednesday 7 February 2007 page 28

Scottish news

2000 patients underfed said minister

Nearly 2,000 hospital patients in Scotland were diagnosed with malnutrition last year.

A total of 1,909 patients were found to be clinically undernourished, according to figures revealed by health minister Andy Kerr in a parliamentary answer to SNP spokesperson Shona Robison.

Last year’s total included 38 children under 16. The worst-hit area was Lothian with 514 cases, followed by Glasgow with 503.

The Executive admitted the true figures could be even higher because malnutrition is often not the main reason people end up in hospital.

Source:- Daily Record, Wednesday 7 February 
Welsh news

Valleys prison ‘preferred’
The Assembly Government would prefer the Home Office built any new prisons in Wales at the head of the South Wales Valleys, First Minister Rhodri Morgan said yesterday.

Morgan said the National Offender Management Service was looking for sites in Wales, but it had not made a final decision yet.

A new prison could provide a jobs boost for the Heads of the Valleys area, one of the poorest parts of Wales, he added.

Source:- Western Mail  Wednesday 7 February


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