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Four activity centres in England suspended over ‘serious’ safeguarding concerns

activity centres

Four activity centres in England suspended over ‘serious’ safeguarding concerns

Ofsted has suspended four holiday activity centres for children in England over “serious safeguarding concerns” including allegations of substance abuse by staff, in a rare move by the education watchdog.

The sites to have their registration suspended are Liddington in Wiltshire, Marchants Hill in Surrey, Osmington Bay in Dorset and Windmill Hill in East Sussex.

Ofsted said that some of the concerns identified were being investigated by other agencies and it was unable to provide specific details at this stage.

The safeguarding concerns included environmental health, health and safety, and the conduct of staff including substance misuse.

The regulator undertook inspections this week at five PGL centres providing Ofsted-registered care and activities for unaccompanied children on half-term holidays and found serious safeguarding issues at four camps.

PGL Travel, the camp operator, provides residential breaks and activity holidays for children aged seven to 17. It operates centres across the UK and France.

The Ofsted reports relate to the provision of childcare to unaccompanied children under eight. The suspension only applies to the provision of those services at the four centres.

Ofsted is only able to inspect PGL’s registered childcare provision in England and does not have any power to inspect or regulate other activities that the company runs for children who are accompanied by their schools or parents.

The regulator said: “We recognise the impact this decision will have on many families. PGL has a duty to inform affected parents urgently, and we have requested contact details in order to do the same.”

In response to the action by Ofsted, a spokesperson for PGL said: “PGL is committed to the highest operational standards. Ofsted have highlighted potential risks arising from isolated administrative and procedural shortcomings at four sites.

“Over the next six weeks[…] we will be working with Ofsted to fully understand their concerns. We are passionate about delivering high-quality, inspiring learning experiences that change young people’s lives and will address any shortfalls identified.”

Elsewhere, two reports by Ofsted on Thursday concluded that legislation does not reflect the level of influence that early years multiple providers and social care groups have on nurseries and children’s homes.

The regulator said it was currently only able to inspect individual nurseries, preschools and children’s homes, and has called for enhanced powers “to make sure multiple providers and groups are having a positive impact on children”.

It argues that regulatory oversight was needed at group level in addition to individual children’s home level.

Yvette Stanley, Ofsted’s national director for regulation and social care, said: “Stronger oversight of large providers is vital if we are to make sure children are getting the best deal. Current legislation is outdated and doesn’t reflect the early years and social care sectors as they operate today.

“The upcoming review into children’s social care could be a real opportunity to reform this legislation. Our research shows that these large providers have a significant impact on their individual nurseries and children’s homes, and ultimately the education and care that children receive.

“As Ofsted can only inspect individual settings, we are missing an important part of the picture.”

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Health

12 State Governors Owing Us, Health Workers Cry Out

The Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria MHWUN, has cried out that governors of 12 states of Nigeria are unfair to their members by owing them several years of salary arrears and also failed to standardise their payments .

The medical body noted that the worst of it all is that these governors have failed to implement the N30,000 new minimum wage that has become a law in the country.

They said the governors have subjected them to harrowing life.

The MHWUN National Vice President , Femi Adebisi stated this in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti state capital at the weekend during the 2022 international youth day organized by the South West leadership of the union, under the theme , ‘Intergenerational solidarity : creating a world for all ages.’

Adebisi said the welfare of health workers remains the only recipe to the recurrent brain drain crippling the health sector.

He however, did not identify the affected 12 states.

“We have nothing less than 12 states that are owing health workers their entitlements.We are engaging them as a union and we are hoping the governors and everyone concern will do the needful soon”, he stated.

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Health

Pay Hazard Allowance To Health Workers, NLC Urges F.G

The President of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Mr Ayuba Wabba, has urged the Federal Government to immediately begin the payment of hazard allowance to health workers in the country.

Wabba made the call at the 2022 annual Federal Capital Territory Nurses Week/Scientific Workshop of the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives on Thursday in Abuja.

At the workshop with the theme, “Invest in Nursing and respect rights to secure global health,” Wabba said the allowance has been reviewed but payment is yet to begin.

“Many health workers have fallen victim to diseases in taking care of patients. I salute the nurses and Midwives, your reward is not only in heaven but here on earth. I urge you to learn so you can discharge quality healthcare service to Nigerians.

“The payment of hazard allowance will boost the morale of our health workers in the country”, he added.

 

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Health

Cholera Outbreak Kills 10 In Gombe

Gombe state government has declared an outbreak of cholera after ten deaths were recorded across the state.

This was made public by Habu Dahiru, Gombe commissioner for health,  on Thursday.

Dahiru, who was represented by Abdulrahman Shuaibu, executive secretary of the Gombe Primary Health Care Development Agency, said as of September 20, 236 cases of cholera had been recorded in the state.

“This year, from June, we had sporadic cases of cholera in Balanga LGA and because of the preparedness and prompt response; it has been largely subdued without escalation,” he said.

These outbreaks are recorded in eight wards across Balanga, Yamaltu-Deba, Nafada, Funakaye and Gombe LGA of the state.

“The state ministry of health has promptly initiated public health actions for prevention and control of the disease.

“As of September 20, there was an increase in the number of cases in Gombe state as 236 cases have been listed so far.”

The commissioner said increased downpour of rain and flooding in many parts of the state led to the cholera outbreak.

He said decontamination of wells and boreholes in affected communities would be carried out and distribution of water treatment tablets in all affected communities would be conducted.

 

 

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