Wired-Gov Plus weekly newsletter welcomes back its readers after a somewhat ‘soggy’ August break.
Consultations: While we were away: This week’s web-based part of the newsletter includes many of the 40+ consultations that have been announced since we last published a month ago. Click HERE to access Consultations section.
Newswire: Thinking outside the Government Spin – Previously Wired-Gov Plus has included the occasional opinion / report from assorted ‘Think Tanks / Research Organisations’ in its Newswire section. As we now regularly monitor an increasing number of these websites, we will be shortly loading new items to a dedicated section, which you will be able to add to your personal selection of news alerts.
The editorial ream would welcome any suggestions from readers as to any additional organisations that should be monitored for publications (Contact Us), in order to provide a ‘balance’ of views.
Items in this category for the last month include:
* New research shows conspiracy theories play important role in tipping people into extremism. The report, The Power of Unreason (from the think tank Demos), is based on the analysis of conspiracy theories in extremist groups. It looked at religious, far-right & left, eco, anarchic and cult-based extremism. It found that conspiracy theories are frequently adopted by extremist groups to demonise outsiders, discredit moderates and can push them in a more extreme and sometimes violent direction.
* The Chancellor claimed in his Budget speech, that the June 2010 Budget was a 'progressive Budget'. Researchers from the Institute of Fiscal Studies have cast doubt on this claim and, using analysis published by the DWP, they have attempted to reflect the impact of all the benefit cuts announced in the Budget.
* Responding to the latest borrowing figures from the ONS, Mark Littlewood, Director General of the Institute of Economic Affairs, expresses grave concern that these figures disguise the gravity of Britain’s financial situation. Research calculates the real national debt at £4.8 trillion, a staggering 333% of GDP or £78,000 per person. The study's calculation includes liabilities such as public sector & state pensions, as well as an allowance for the bailed-out banks.
* In the new report, Access All Areas, Demos urges action to be taken to get disadvantaged young people into internships normally dominated by the middle classes. A 2008 study found there was significant correlation between socio-economic background and the social status of work places, indicating that work placements can compound the class divide. Demos said that the state stands to make significant savings by getting young people, who would otherwise be NEET (not in employment, education or training), off welfare and into the workplace.
* The Institute for Government set out its views on fiscal consolidation, alongside the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), in a briefing shortly after the election. A vital element (based on the experience of countries like Canada & Sweden) is securing a public mandate.
* Referral management: lessons for success is the latest in the Quality in a cold climate series of reports from The King’s Fund evaluating how the NHS can maintain quality & avoid cutting services, while delivering the £14-20bn savings needed under current funding projections. The report lays out 7 practical principles that commissioners can look to in considering referral management strategies.
* GPs’ lack of involvement in maternity care is undermining the care of pregnant women & their families, according to a report published for The King’s Fund’s Inquiry into the Quality of General Practice in England. The GPs’ role in maternity care has all but disappeared over the past 30 years, with recent policy & guidance omitting any reference to their role in caring for pregnant women.
* People living on Bradford's traditionally white estates want to be given the chance to improve their own lives and change the perception held by the rest of society, according to a new report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.
UKOC: Shock, Horror! - 10m adults in the UK have never accessed Wired-Gov Plus - This year, the fourth annual Get online day has grown to become a full Get online week, and it's set to be bigger & better than ever before. More than 3,000 Get online week events will be held across the country between 18 & 24 October 2010, helping tens of thousands of people to get started with computers and the internet.
The campaign - from UK online centres - is backed by Race Online 2012 partners including the BBC, the Post Office and mobile network Three.
90% of all new jobs require basic internet skills and 7m jobs were posted online last year. However, there are still 10m adults in the UK who have never used the internet and are missing out on the benefits, opportunities & savings it can provide. What's more, the problem is worst for those already at a disadvantage. If you're older, disabled, or on a low income, you're far more likely to be off-line.
CLG: The same rights & rules for everyone means that equality is ‘seen’ to be achieved - Travellers who ‘play by the rules’ will get the same rights as other mobile home residents and could benefit from more authorised sites under plans announced recently by Communities & Local Government, Secretary Eric Pickles. Travellers on official local authority sites will benefit from changes to legislation that will give them the same rights & responsibilities as residents on other mobile home sites.
At the same time, top-down Whitehall planning rules on travellers which Ministers believe has undermined community cohesion and harmed the countryside will be scrapped. Such rules have, Ministers believe, undermined community cohesion by creating a perception amongst many people of ‘different' planning rules for the travelling community and for the settled community. Planning rules should be the same for all.
The Government has also announced that councils will be given incentives through the New Homes Bonus scheme to deliver new housing and Ministers have announced that this will include authorised traveller sites. Details of the scheme will be set out in a public consultation later in 2010.