social skirmishes: some recent social care stories that caught the eye
● Fresh from his near-triumph in the London mayoral elections, Matt O’Connor is back in the news. He has stated that his baby, Fathers 4 Justice, will launch a Bolshevik-like “campaign of direct action against the government, its ministers and the judiciary”. The statement followed a protest this month on top of MP Harriet Harman’s south London abode by “Captain Conception” and “Cash Gordon” of F4J, who said they wouldn’t come down until Harman read the book Family Court Hell – is this the way to win the Man Booker Prize? Let’s hope that Matt’s new campaign is more successful than his bid for London supremo.
● The scourge of antisocial behaviour continues. Glastonbury Council, Somerset, is threatening a clampdown on free food handouts by the religious group Shekinashram, from the local ashram centre. A group spokesperson said that the handouts were an “act of love”. But love isn’t in the air in King Arthur country. The council fears the freebie food may encourage the wrong sort of behaviour in the town, so it’s taking decisive action – by setting up a working group. That’ll scare the robed ones off.
● Teachers and social workers complain of having to obtain parental permission for out-of-school activities but think yourselves lucky. Bradford University’s Sakile Mtombeni was a teacher in Zimbabwe in 2000 when he refused to take children to a Zanu-PF rally saying he didn’t have parental permission. Not long after, he had to flee when thugs came looking to beat him, or worse. Congratulations are now due as Sakile will graduate as a social worker this summer.
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