News round-up: Park rangers will help make playgrounds safe

Park rangers will help make playgrounds safe

David Cameron will today propose a raft of measures to help reclaim public spaces, including playgrounds, from fear of gangs and the absence of adult authority figures.

The measures come in a review of childhood, undertaken by shadow cabinet member David Willetts, that has identified crime, traffic and anarchy in public spaces as the cause in the decline of play and the loss of true childhood. Britain, he claims, is the least family-friendly country in Europe.

Read more on this story in The Guardian today

Plan to curb youths drinking in public

Police are to be given powers to confiscate alcohol from youngsters who drink in public as ministers try to quell public concern about rowdiness.

Jacqui Smith, the home secretary, will announce plans for a ban on drinking in public places as she seeks to end an anomaly that forbids minors from buying alcohol but does not stop them drinking. The move will mean that children can legally drink alcohol only at home.

Read more on this story in The Times today

Mystery of Bradford’s missing children: were they forced into marriages abroad?

They are the missing women of Bradford – the more than 200 teenage girls per year who disappear from their schools and fail to return from trips overseas. Where they go and whether they come back is not known, but it is feared that many are forced to marry abroad – and hundreds more like them across the country are vanishing every year.

No one knows the exact number of British women who are forced marry against their will, but a recent Home Office paper revealed that, in 2006 in Bradford alone, 250 girls aged 13 to 16 were taken off their school rolls because they did not return from a visit abroad.

Read more on this story in The Independent today

Police and authorities ‘afraid to act against honour crimes in case they are called racist’, claims report

Teachers, police and councils are afraid to take action against so-called honour crimes for fear of being accused of racism, it is claimed. Women are also being betrayed by community figures who believe those who break traditional taboos deserve to be punished, a report by the Centre for Social Cohesion found.

Read more on this story in The Daily Mail today

Care homes sedating Alzheimer patients with ‘chemical cosh’ which could lead to early death

Dangerous drugs are being prescribed to sedate thousands of Alzheimer’s sufferers in care homes, campaigners claimed yesterday.

The all-party parliamentary group on dementia will be told today that the use of the so-called “chemical cosh” has serious side effects and can even lead to premature death

Read more on this story in The Daily Mail

Popular state schools barred from picking middle class children over poorer pupils

Popular state schools are being barred from picking middle-class children by the government’s admissions watchdog, it emerged today. They are being made to discontinue practices, such as asking parents whether they support a school’s ethos to prevent them favouring middle-class applicants.

Read more on this story in The Daily Mail

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