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In the News

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Even more dangerous to our economy and way of life than greedy bankers - As part of MOD’s full-spectrum military capability, the Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, has announced that the department is set to recruit hundreds of computer experts as cyber reservists to help defend the UK ’s national security, working at the cutting-edge of the nation’s cyber defences.

Mr Hammond confirmed the creation of a new Joint Cyber Reserve which will see reservists working alongside regular forces to protect critical computer networks and safeguard vital data.
Press release & links ~ Cyber Security Information Sharing Partnership ~ CH:  Cyber Security & Global Interdependence: What Is Critical? ~ A Measured US Policy for Cyber Offence & Defence?~ SOCA:  Is nothing sacred? (5th item) ~ BIS:  A case of ‘Not if, but when’ your organisation’s ICT systems are breached (7th item) ~ NAO:  The new ‘frontline’ is both civilian & military (8th item) ~ PC&PE:  We no longer wield such a big stick ~ Is your organization in denial about Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attacks?

A person is much more than just their ‘looks’ - Minister for Women & Equalities Jo Swinson, hosted the first international conference recently with leading experts from around the globe to discuss the current state of the existing evidence on body image.

In May the Government published a rapid evidence review into the existing research on body image.  The conference aimed to build on this review, our understanding of the evidence, and to identify any gaps in knowledge.  The findings & the expertise of the academics who attended the event will help drive forward the government’s thinking on the future direction of work in this area.
Press release & links ~ Government’s Body Confidence Campaign celebrates success and welcomes new action ~ Parent pack for child body confidence launched ~ Body Image Parent Pack ~ Magazine praised for body confidence work ~ Body Confidence Campaign ~ Ch4:  Body Confidence ~ APPG on Body Image

Accidental invention ‘flows’ from TSB funding & support - The potential nightmare of the complex data attached to the making of every TV programme & cinema film has been turned into a sweet dream for a young British software company, made possible by funding & support from the Technology Strategy Board.

ZOO Digital of Sheffield and the TSB had realised that metadata is the key to allow the different components of a media asset to be tracked & managed.  By working on this ZOO also realised that by designing it into the workflow, the workflow itself is improved, thus leading to a brand new data management system.
Press release & links ~ ZOO Digital

Looking back at the ‘Thin Multi-racial Line’ - There is a rich history of racial diversity in the Armed Forces of the British Crown which can be traced back over several centuries.  To mark Black History Month the MoD will be profiling members of the UK Armed Forces from countries across the world.

The largest contingent of military forces outside of the came from .  The Indian Army started life in the 17th century when the East India Company recruited local personnel to guard its interests, although formed units were not organised until the mid-18th century.
Press release & links ~ Black History Month ~ Forever India ~ We Were There exhibition ~ For whom the Bells Toll ~ Caribbean women in WW2 ~ Black SAS war hero who held off 250 rebels single-handed to be immortalised in statue ~ Walter Tull and the black Great War heroes of the British Army ~ Black / Asian British Army ~ BBC:  A White Man's War? World War One and the West Indies ~ Looking for records of a person in the African forces under British control

Above & Beyond - A total of 117 members of the Armed Forces have received honours & awards in the latest Operational Honours & Awards List.
Press release & links ~ Military courage recognised by Operational Honours List

Can afford to ‘save’ its oil money? – Finance Secretary John Swinney has welcomed Fiscal Commission Working Group’s report on Stabilisation & Savings Funds for Scotland, which sets out a framework that will ‘help to maximise the economic opportunity that Scotland’s oil & gas wealth presents and ensure that it provides a lasting benefit for future generations’.

The Working Group recommends that both a short-term stabilisation fund and a long-term savings fund should be established immediately following independence.
Press release & links ~ Maximising the return from Oil & Gas in an independent Scotland ~ Cable: UK single market is key to Scotland’s future success ~ Scotland can more than afford to be independent ~ Call for tax regime to maximise recovery ~ Scotland’s proposed oil fund: more than just hot air? ~ Scottish independence: George Osborne warns on oil fund ~ ScotGov:  But do the FM’s figures add up when analysed in hard-headed Glasgow? ~ PC&PE:  Still many questions to be answered before voters can make an informed choice, rather than emotional choice (4th item)

Fewer expensive over-runs for government projects in future? - The first leaders have graduated from the Major Projects Leadership Academy.  21 civil servants have graduated from the academy designed specifically to train leaders who manage major projects across the public sector such as infrastructure, commercial and organisational change projects.

The programme is designed to equip future leaders with the skills & knowledge to enable them to deliver successfully major projects on time and within budget.  As part of the future Treasury approvals process for major programmes, all project leaders & senior responsible owners will have to complete the programme.  By the end of 2014, 340 project leaders will have graduated or be participating on the programme.
Press release & links ~ Major Projects Leadership Academy ~ Major Projects Authority ~ CO:  No more silos in a future Civil Service? (2nd item) ~ MPs publish report on the dismantled National Programme for IT in the NHS ~ Government launches new guide to infrastructure delivery ~ MPs publish report on assurance for major projects ~ NAO:  Assurance for major projects

New Competition & Consumer Agency - The UK ’s new unified competition body, the Competition and Markets Authority, was launched last week in shadow form before going live in April 2014.  It is consulting on what should be its ‘vision, strategy & values’ - closes on 12 November 2013.

The CMA will bring together the Competition Commission (CC) with the competition & certain consumer functions of the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) in order to promote competition, both within & outside the , for the benefit of consumers.
Press release & links ~ Gambling Commission & National Lottery Commission merge

How easy is it for disabled people to get around the Capital?TfL are looking for ‘mystery travellers’ (who use wheelchairs or assistance dogs, have reduced mobility, or hearing & sight loss) to make journeys across London on public transport and complete questionnaires about their trips.  They will be trained & paid for every journey they complete.
Press release & links ~ TfL and accessibility charities launch new awareness training for bus drivers

2013 Sportswomen of the Year Awards - Nominations are now open for this year’s Sunday Times and Sky Sports Sportswomen of the Year Awards, celebrating the outstanding contribution to sport made by elite performers, coaches, administrators, community volunteers & inspirational female figures – Nominations close  midnight on Monday 4 November 2013.
Press release & links 

Forthcoming Event: Digital Public Services Wales Conference, Friday 18th October 2013 - Park Plaza Hotel, Cardiff - Our Digital Public Services Wales Conference comes at a time when public services across Wales are tasked with keeping pace with the rapidly developing digitalisation agenda.

In order to achieve urgent savings and increase efficient working, agencies across the Welsh public sector are transforming the way services are delivered by shifting towards digital channels and self-service platforms. Attend this conference to hear about award winning examples of embedding digital channels in service delivery and engaging with the community via new platforms.

Click here to book online now or for more information please contact Naomi Wood on 020 7202 0571 or email at


Please note that previously published newsletters can be accessed from the Newsletter Archive

General News

Policy Statements and Initiatives

Thousands of patients to benefit from £400m cancer package – (Cancer Drug Fund ~ NICE:  Government to extend Cancer Drugs Fund until 2016)

Help to Buy: mortgage guarantee available 3 months early – (New housing scheme for Service personnel)

New measures to increase rural home-building

Help to Work scheme announced by the government

£400m will help science & engineering students get ahead in the global race and encourage more women to study these subjects

Changes to early entry at GCSE

Marriage Transferable Tax Allowance announced by government

Seven day, 8am – 8pm, GP access for hard-working people – (The Kings Fund - Our response to the Prime Minister's proposals to extend GP opening hours)

£100m to support the education of children in care

New legislation planned for Scotland’s carers

“Wales needs control of Stamp Duty Tax to boost Welsh economy” – Jane Hutt

Friends and Family Test extended across public services

Claimants required to undertake supervised jobsearch at new centres – (NEF - What can history tell us about George Osborne’s workfare plans?)

Government strengthens health regulator’s independence

Use less, save more

Universities awarded £19.5m for overhaul of quantitative social science training

New funding for traineeship scheme announced

Welsh Government publishes new workplace policy on Violence against Women & Domestic Abuse – (Domestic Abuse, Violence against Women & Sexual Violence Policy)

Choose pharmacy for common ailments

Councils urged to use parking zones to cut yellow lines

Paths for Communities – pathway to success


G8 dementia summit: have your say on improving dementia research – (Comments by 15 October 2013)

Have your say on Care Quality Commission fees – (Consultation documents ~ (Closes 25 November 2013)

NHS Confederation - Monitor & NHS England launch 2014-15 National Tariff consultation – (Consultation ~ closes 30 October 2013)

Strengthening care & support regulation in Wales ~ (Closes 6 January 2014)

Views wanted on algal oil – (Comments by 20 October 2013)

Views wanted on D-beta-hydroxybutyrate ester – (Comments by 20 October 2013)

The FCA sets out in detail how it will regulate consumer credit, including payday lending, when it takes over responsibility in April 2014 - (Payday industry not meeting voluntary codes ~ CAB - More action is needed to tackle misuse of CPAs ~ CAB - New rules for payday lenders will help protect consumers ~ Payday lending: tougher new rules welcomed by government ~ Confirmed impacts: NAO report influences better regulation of consumer credit ~ Closes 3 December 2013)

Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013: Shared buildings regulations consultation - (Closes 1 November 2013)

TfL consults on proposed changes to routes 61, 273 & 661 - (Closes 8 November 2013)

Large unincorporated associations may be eligible for help following 2008 deposit failures – FCA to consult on extending FSCS protection on investments - (Closes 30 October 2013)

More detail on special educational needs reforms - (Closes 9 December 2013)

New competition authority comes into existence - (Closes 12 November 2013)

Additional Consultations:  Readers should be aware that many consultations are never publicised with a press release, so do not appear in either the email alerts or Wired - GOV Plus.  Many of these consultations (& subsequent conclusions) can be found at the following links:
GOV.UK consultations ~ Current ScotGov consultations ~ Recently added WAG consultations

Guidance Notes and Best Practice Guides

General Reports and Other Publications

Legislation / Legal

IPCC publishes Commissioner Tom Davies' key decisions on Lynette White

IPCC investigating PCC's employee benefits while he was a senior police officer

Prisoners made to pay for damage

OFT refers television playout services merger to the competition commission

Wildlife Crime in Scotland

Chris Grayling: Simple cautions for serious offences to be scrapped

Automatic 'early release' axed for child rapists & terrorists

Ofcom’s decisions on the broadcast coverage related to the killing of Fusilier Lee Rigby on 22 May 2013

Helen Grant: Reduction in fee for lasting powers of attorney

Scrap metal laws to stop metal theft come into force – (LGA - New licensing rules for scrap metal dealers come into force)

New competition authority comes into existence

Gambling Commission and National Lottery Commission merge

New legislation planned for Scotland’s carers

RoSPA – More lives to be saved from ‘Silent Killer’ with law to change, says RoSPA Scotland

Banking Reform Bill amendments published

CC to investigate television playout services merger

Large unincorporated associations may now be eligible for protection

Wiltshire firm fined after child trapped by electric gates at Bournemouth school

Asset Recovery and the G8 Deauville Partnership with Arab Countries in Transition

Catalyst Investment Group Limited in default – (The FCA censures Catalyst Investment Group Limited for misleading investors and fines former compliance officer ~ The FCA decides to ban & fine Timothy Roberts and Andrew Wilkins)

EU Legislation, Initiatives, etc.

Bring in a universal mobile phone charger for all makes, say MEPs

Rise in farm payment euro rate

NSA inquiry: MEPs hear US privacy experts, whistleblowers and Snowden statement

Transport committee wants new proposal for flight times

New farm policy clears key hurdle: Agriculture MEPs endorse CAP reform deal

Intellectual Property Rights: study indicates that roughly 35% of jobs in the EU rely on IPR-intensive industries

EU Sport Forum: Olympic gold medallist puts spotlight on 'dual careers'

EU and Indonesia sign historic deal to curb illegal timber

Commission signs €4m grant for sustainable urban mobility

Still much room to improve the European semester, say MEPs

The future of the Economic & Monetary Union: Commission proposes ideas to deepen social integration

Linas Linkevičius: having ‘more Europe’ involves looking for joint decisions

"REFIT - Fit for growth" – Commission takes ambitious next steps to make EU law lighter

EU budget 2014: growth, jobs and humanitarian aid cuts reversed – (Budgets Committee agrees on real-terms cut in Parliament's 2014 budget)

European Commission & Member States to assess barriers restricting access to regulated professions

The European Asylum Support Office publishes its work programme for 2014

Belgacom hacking case: MEPs regret UK intelligence service absence at EP hearing

Monopoly prices for gas reduce EU’s competitiveness

Digital Agenda: Bringing more women into EU digital sector would bring €9bn annual GDP boost, EU study shows

Crowdfunding in the EU - exploring the added value of potential EU action

Charity and Voluntary Sector

Business and Other Briefings

Business Register and Employment Survey, 2012

UK Government-backed broadband roll-out reaches another milestone in Wales – (Passengers to benefit from high-speed mobile broadband on trains ~ Welsh Secretary: High-speed internet at heart of UK Government growth agenda)

September procurement update

£400m will help science & engineering students get ahead in the global race and encourage more women to study these subjects

National Minimum Wage to rise from 1 October 2013

Sweeping reforms to directors’ pay and narrative reports come in to force

HS2 Growth Taskforce comes to Manchester to secure maximum boost for region's economy

Cuts to red tape mark ‘Freedom Day’ for UK businesses – (Cutting red tape for business improvement districts that help small shops & local traders)

Contingent LabourONE now live

New funding for traineeship scheme announced – (IfL comments on additional funding for traineeships)

UK firms receive IP boost in South East Asia

Strengthening Scotland’s links with India

List of restrictive company names to be reduced

Government helps military wives on the entrepreneurial ladder

RUSI - Defence procurement is an inherently governmental function and questions remain over proposed reform of DE&S

Welsh Secretary: Fast Growth 50 businesses are delivering for Wales

Revenue & Customs Brief 29/13
This Brief sets out HM Revenue & Customs' position following the decision by the Court of Appeal in the case of ITV Services Ltd (ITV). The case concerned the employment status for National Insurance contributions purposes of actors engaged by ITV under specific contract types

Industry News

Forthcoming Event

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