Whistleblowing is a situation in which someone reports wrongdoing at their workplace. This could relate to things like law-breaking, environmental damage, health and safety concerns, or dishonesty.
It is widely recognised to be in the public interest for workers to be able to make disclosures of this nature. However, recent reports suggest that not enough is being done to protect and encourage whistleblowers, especially in the teaching profession.
In early November 2013 consultant surgeon David Sellu was convicted of manslaughter by gross negligence and sentenced to two and a half years in prison.
When presented with a patient suffering from severe abdominal pains, Sellu suspected a ruptured bowel but delayed in prescribing antibiotics and doing abdominal scans. The patient, James Hughes, went on to die and the court found that he would have stood a higher chance of surviving had Sellu treated him with the appropriate urgency.
Jail serious, that’s how serious.
Stuart Syvret, a politician and former Health Minister of Jersey, was sentenced to three months’ imprisonment on 4th November in connection with material published on his blog. He had made grave allegations against a nurse in a hospital with a high death rate, and against several individuals regarding historic child abuse in Jersey care homes.
Solicitors and barristers up and down the country are coming together and threatening strike action over the Government’s proposed reforms to the legal aid system in England and Wales.
Approximately 80 lawyers in Devon and Cornwall have become the latest legal professionals to make a stand against the proposals that would see criminal lawyers having to compete for a contract in order to be allowed to take on legal aid cases.
Last night Chris Huhne, the former cabinet minister, spent his first night in jail for lying about who was owed the speeding points handed to him in 2003.
It is a dramatic fall from grace for a politician who was once considered one of the most dynamic ministers in the coalition. He only became an MP in 2005, but was energy secretary in the early stages of the coalition before the scandal broke.
An absolutely stonking story, this one.
Until 2012 an app, the Chubby Checker, was available to download through Hewlett Packard software for their Palm OS software. Now the original Chubby Checker is suing HP and the company that made the app, Magic Apps, for $500m.
‘Chubby’ is slang for an erection, and the app was designed to be an amusing piece of software allowing women to estimate the size of a man’s penis. You can see why they used the name – it’s great.
A recent development
The Information Tribunal has rejected an attempt by the Department for Education (DfE) to withhold information, concerning the identity of groups who have proposed to open so-called ‘free schools’ in England, as reported by BBC News.
The Information, including the names, location and religious affiliation of such groups, was requested in an attempt to highlight an alleged lack of transparency inherent in the system of proposing and setting up a free school.
Yesterday, Teresa May, the Home Secretary, confirmed the Government would not seek to overturn an amendment supported by peers in the House of Lords in December 2012, regarding the removal of the word ‘insulting’ from Section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986.
Section 5 states that: “threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour” could be deemed a criminal offence. The amendment to the Act was proposed last year by the former chief Constable of the West Midlands, Lord Dear, as part of the Crime and Courts Bill.#
Eric Pickles, the Communities Secretary, spoke on the BBC’s Sunday Politics Show this week-end. He vowed the Government will introduce legislation, in the next session of Parliament, to stop local councils fining residents for a range of infractions in putting out their rubbish for collection.
For example, according to the Telegraph, Pickles says that it is ‘ludicrous’ fines can be issued for trivial matters such as over-filling wheelie-bins, putting yoghurt pots into the wrong recycling container, and leaving bins out too long after collections.
A story by the Telegraph published on Sunday reveals that, according to the Care Quality Commission (CQC), 26 NHS Healthcare Providers do not have enough staff ‘to keep people safe and meet their health and welfare needs’, which is the required standard of care for all parts of the health service.
The list of Healthcare Providers, situated throughout England, was compiled from the latest CQC inspections carried out as recently as November; it was obtained and made public by the Labour party.