Letters, Friday, January 4, 2012

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Help to continue fight on abuse

 Many people will have seen or heard about the Jimmy Savile sexual abuse inquiry in the media. As of early December, the NSPCC and the police have identified over 450 victims of sexual abuse by Savile. Eighty per cent of these were children or young people and the offences include over 30 rapes.

 Overall, the number of contacts to the NSPCC helpline around sexual abuse, both historic and current, has nearly tripled since the Savile revelations. This means we can help more historic victims than ever before to finally get the support they need and protect children who are at risk now.

 Child abuse remains a widespread problem. However, we understand that many people are still not sure where to turn to or how to report their suspicions. Anyone who has a concern about a child can contact the NSPCC’s helpline for advice and support about any issues relating to child abuse, past or present, on 0808 800 5000 or email help@nspcc.org.uk

 In November we launched a national appeal for 4,000 volunteers for the ChildLine Schools Service. The service focuses on nine to 11-year-olds and aims to visit every primary school by 2016. Using assemblies and workshops, the new service is designed to help younger children understand what abuse is and how they can stay safe, and to encourage children to recognise situations where they may need help and how to get it.

 NSPCC research shows that an average of two children in every primary school classroom has suffered from abuse or neglect. These young children often feel alone and desperate and many have nobody to turn to. Most children who contact ChildLine are aged over 11, however, many have suffered for months or even years before finding the courage to contact us. If we are really serious about stopping child abuse, we need to reach these children when they are younger.

 This year promises to be a very exciting time for the NSPCC in Wearside. Our work makes a huge difference to the lives of children across the UK and the service centre in Newcastle will help us pioneer new approaches to address the child protection problems facing children in the area.

 Our Newcastle service centre will be concentrating on delivering services for children in Tyne and Wear facing physical, sexual abuse and neglect through a number of ground breaking services.

 We have made significant strides to help children this year, but still need the public’s support to continue our work.

 Wishing everyone a Happy New Year.

Wendy Bates

NSPCC Head of Community Fundraising, North East and Cumbria

Better sign needed

I VISITED Pallion Retail Park to do Christmas shopping. The car park was full so I parked along the side of the road (adjacent to the car parking bays, where the grass verge is). Numerous other cars were also parked there so I thought it was ok.

 When I returned to the car, a parking charge notice from UK CPS Ltd was on my windscreen and I had been fined £60 for parking “out of a marked bay”.

 There are no yellow lines here but apparently there is a small notice somewhere warning you not to park there.

 If this sign had been displayed clearly and in the appropriate area, obviously, no one would park there in the first place.

K Charlton


Grow up, Terry

TERRY Gardner has absolutely disgusted me and my husband.

 He sat there and had the nerve to say it wasn’t his problem it was costing the hospital £250 a day for him to be there. Terry you are the problem. If you want taxpayers’ help then grow up and stop eating everything you see. As for his wife who goes to drop off and collect her kids from my kids’ school – what a joke, how dare you say you’re scared that your daughter is pilling the weight on. You shove a couple of packets of sweets in her hand everyday. Give her something healthy.

 We are very interested as to whether this family actually appreciate the help or are they just a bunch of time wasters who think its all a joke?

Name and address withheld

What revelations

A 21-page dossier released under the 30-year rule by the national archives shows Jimmy Savile’s extraordinary access to the highest echelons of British society.

 The 80s must have some secrets. The last lot that came out revealed Lord Howe as the politician who wanted to contain the people of Liverpool with the military as he “didn’t know what to do with them”. What a man, and he was rewarded with a peerage.

 Only death saved Savile from a long stretch. Lord Archer he did a stretch “not long enough”. Lord Black’s just finished his stretch. Asil Nadir, loved by the Tories, just starting his stretch. Jonathan Aitken, the now contrite perjurer, he also did a stretch.

 In between flogging off everything from the oil, gas, water, telecom, electric, then closing the pits, shipyards, steelworks, plus a war you would think Thatcher would have taken some time to advise her celebrated colleagues and friends on how to keep out of jail.

Ged Taylor