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CEOP: 'Saviles' sometimes ‘hunt’ in packs - A new training film to ‘help front-line police officers spot the early signs of group-associated grooming, and support vulnerable children being sexually exploited’, was launched last week.
The Association of Chief Police Offices (ACPO) and the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA) has teamed up with Shona McGarty, the BBC ‘EastEnders’ actress who plays the character ‘Whitney’, to create the new film, which is available at www.cse.siyonatech.com and on CEOP’s You Tube channel www.youtube.com/ceop.
The 20 minute film, made with the help of Asset TV and Siyonatech, uses a storyline of ‘Whitney’ to explore how children & young people can be made vulnerable to grooming & sexual abuse, highlighting the grooming & manipulation techniques used by abusers.
NHS Confed: The legacy of Labour’s PFI-fuelled hospital building programme is coming home to roost - The Commons Committee of Public Accounts recently published its report: Department of Health: Securing the future financial sustainability of the NHS.
The Rt Hon Margaret Hodge MP, Chair of the CPA, said: "The Department of Health could not explain to us how it will deal with an NHS trust that goes bankrupt. Nor could it provide reassurance that financial problems would not damage the quality of care or equality of access to all citizens, wherever they live.
The overall surplus of £2.1bn across all NHS bodies in 2011-12 masks the fact that a significant minority are in financial difficulty. In London, 2 trusts have a combined deficit of £115m, one of which, South London Healthcare NHS Trust, has been placed in special administration. On top of that, the NHS is striving to make efficiency savings worth £20bn while undergoing a major reform of the system.
Up to now financial problems have often been hidden, with struggling trusts being bailed out through additional financial support from the NHS and the Department. …….. It very much looks like the Department is inventing rules and processes on the hoof rather than anticipating problems and establishing risk protocols”.
BIS: Foundation of a future vibrant economy or a policy from the Stone Age? - Lord Heseltine has set out a ‘comprehensive economic plan to improve the UK’s ability to create wealth’. In his independent report Lord Heseltine 'makes the case for a major rebalancing of responsibilities for economic development between central & local government, and between government & the private sector'.
The report, No Stone Unturned in Pursuit of Growth, makes 89 recommendations which ‘aim to inject stability into the economy, create the conditions for growth and maximise the performance of the UK’. At the heart of the proposals are measures to ‘unleash the potential of local economies & leaders and enable every part of the UK economy to raise its game’.
CO: An end to expensive, non-connecting, separate legacy systems? - From last week all government bodies must comply with Open Standards Principles, an agreed set of standards to make our IT more open, cheaper & better connected. The OSPs have been developed following the public consultation ‘Open Standards: Open Opportunities – flexibility and efficiency in Government IT’ which took place from February to June 2012.
All Government bodies must now comply with OSPs for:
* software inter-operability
* data & document formats in government IT
* or apply for an exemption.
FSA: Urgent warning to bodybuilding community - Urgent advice has been issued by the Food Standards Agency to the public and to people in the bodybuilding community in particular, following the deaths of 2 people believed to have taken a ‘fat-burner’ substance in tablet or powder form. The 'fat-burner' capsules containing DNP appear to be marketed primarily at the bodybuilding community as a way of losing excess fat.
The substance contains DNP (2, 4-dinitrophenol), an industrial chemical known to have serious short-term & long-term effects, which can be extremely dangerous to human health and is not suitable for human consumption.
STFC: Picturing science at work - 40 of the most spectacular photographs of cutting edge science & engineering have been shortlisted for a major UK photography prize. The public now has a chance to vote online to decide which ten images they think are the most dynamic, inspiring & spectacular.
The public is now invited to visit the Photowalk website to vote for their favourite images and help STFC identify the final set of images that will go forward to the national judging in December. Online Voting closes at noon on Sunday 18 November 2012.
EU News: Does Cameron really stand alone in Europe as Cypriot Presidency calls for significant savings? - Parliament's key negotiators on the EU long-term budget for 2014-2020 expressed dismay at the Cypriot Presidency proposal for the so-called multi-annual financial framework (MFF), presented last week. MEPs directed their main criticism at a proposed cut by €50bn as compared to the Commission's initial proposal of 16 months ago.
The EP negotiation team will now carefully study the new ‘negotiating box’ presented by the Cypriot Presidency, but will advise the EP to act in line with its earlier positions. The European Council will be informed on Parliament's views prior to its extraordinary summit on the 22 & 23 of November 2012. Any decision that disregards the European Parliament's position could result in a veto by the EP.
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