PC&PE: Smallholders are possibly more beautiful than the Agro Industry when it comes to food security - MPs on the International Development Committee are calling for 'concerted action to curb food wastage in the UK and for expansion of DFID’s bilateral nutrition programmes with a particular focus on pregnancy and early years', as part of wider efforts to improve global food security.
Launching a report on Global Food Security as world leaders assemble in London to attend an international nutrition summit hosted by the UK government, Sir Malcolm Bruce, chair of the IDC warned:
…. " UK aid to help smallholders increase food production in the developing world is of direct benefit to UK consumers as rising world food prices will reduce living standards of hard-pressed UK consumers. ….. A number of tangible measures set out in our report could, if implemented, have a significant impact on global food security and directly benefit UK consumers".
DfE: However ‘sickened’ society is each time, incidents still occur - Education Secretary Michael Gove has established a new independent panel to ‘help ensure that lessons are learned when a child dies or is seriously harmed and there are signs of abuse or neglect’.
Its members will advise & challenge local safeguarding children boards (LSCBs) to ‘initiate & publish high-quality serious case reviews (SCRs) in order that, nationally, lessons can be learned to drive up the quality of child protection services and avoid mistakes being repeated’.
The government’s statutory guidance on child protection, ‘Working together to safeguard children’ makes clear that LSCBs should have regard to the panel’s advice when making decisions about SCRs.
The independent panel will:
* bring rigorous independent scrutiny to the system
* help LSCBs apply the criteria for initiating SCRs when a child dies or is seriously harmed and there are signs of abuse & neglect
* advise - and where appropriate challenge - LSCBs when they decide not to initiate a SCR or intend not to publish a report
The panel cannot take enforcement action. Its role will be an advisory one. However, DfE expect LSCBs to have due regard to its advice. The panel will become operational on 1 July 2013 and LSCBs will be informed before then how to communicate with the panel.
IEA: The outlook for UK public expenditure possibly wouldn’t look so black if the black economy could be taxed - New research published recently by the Institute of Economic Affairs reveals that high tax rates have resulted in a shadow economy equivalent to a staggering 10% of GDP, worth in excess of £150bn.
The report, The Shadow Economy, finds overwhelming evidence that punitive tax regimes have led to the shadow economy employing 30m people across the EU. In Italy, Greece & Spain, illicit activity makes up around 20% of national income.
PC&PE: No magic bullet alternative to culling yet then? - In a report published recently on progress to develop a vaccine solution for bovine TB, the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee warns that 'vaccination is expensive, offers no guarantee of protection and will provide little benefit in the immediate future'.
TfL: Young artists invited to ‘find their way to fame’ - Transport for London’s Art on the Underground programme is calling on 5 to 18-year-olds to create a poster which celebrates the Tube's 150th anniversary. The competition draws on Labyrinth, a major project by artist Mark Wallinger who has created an artwork for each of the 270 Tube stations for the anniversary.
To enter, schools must register and then teachers may then submit the artwork entries on behalf of the students. The posters can be any style from abstract to cartoon, use any colours and any medium from collage to painting. The Labyrinth Teacher Pack provides a wealth of creative ideas for classroom activities and inspiring ideas for the competition entries. The deadline for entries is 28 June 2013.
FSCS: Put not your trust in Cybertrust - The Financial Services Compensation Scheme is warning consumers about a firm based in Switzerland (Cybertrust FX) that claims on its website to be part of the FSCS Scheme but is not. The firm is not UK regulated and FSCS does not protect its customers.
STFC: Astronomy journalists could win VLT (very long trip) - The European Astronomy Journalism Prize 2013 launched recently has been expanded to now include entries from Europe & South America. The inaugural competition in 2012 was open only to entries published or broadcast in English in the UK, but has now been extended to entries in English from any ESO member state.
Entries for the Prize (a trip to the world’s most advanced optical instrument: ESO’s Very Large Telescope in Chile) must reflect European interests and they can be online, written or broadcast. They must have been published or broadcast during the period 1 July 2012 to 31 July 2013 inclusive. Applications close on Wednesday 31 July 2013.
DECC: Promoting the positive commercial impact of green energy - In the UK Energy Efficiency Strategy, published last year, DECC identified a need to raise the strategic profile of energy efficiency so that the importance of energy management & energy managers is recognised at the board level within UK business.
One way to do this is through awards ceremonies, so that is why DECC is sponsoring 3 new energy efficiency awards at the 2013 Green Economy Awards.
The awards represent a great opportunity for businesses to boost their profile, celebrate success and showcase how they have used energy efficiency measures to drive a positive commercial impact. The closing date for entrants to the awards is 21 June 2013 and the awards are free to enter so please go online to apply.
Latest Compliance Survey: Are Privileged Accounts the Hidden Threat to Your Organisation's IT Security? - According to the latest Privileged Account Security & Compliance Survey, 86% of large organisations either do not know, or have grossly underestimated the magnitude of their privileged account security problem. Priveleged Accounts have recently emerged as the primary target for advanced enterprise attacks and have been exploited to perpetrate some of the most devastating cyber-attacks and data breaches in recent memory.
For government and public sector organisations, the issue of Priveleged Accounts also impacts directly on compliance mandates and general best practice such as ISO 27001, GPG13 and DPA legislation.
Click here to receive a free copy of the 2013 Privileged Account Security and Compliance Survey and find out how to gauge the magnitude of any Privileged Account security risk within your organisation.
Please note that previously published newsletters can be accessed from the Newsletter Archive