Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A good day for a rant - or three

I joked about being arrested by the blog police, but it's no laughing matter in Burma, where ...

... blogger, Nay Phone Latt has been sentenced to 20 years in jail for 'creating public alarm'.
And poet, Saw Wai has been sentenced to 2 years for concealing an anti-government slogan in a poem.

For background and campaigns see Avaaz.

We're lucky here that we need have no such fears about speaking out about injustice.

So I'm exercising that right by saying how disgusted I am that our government has seen fit to shut down the Metropolitan Police's Human Trafficking Team by cutting its funding.

(I've blogged many times about the sex trade, which was the setting for my 2nd book, Trading Tatiana.)

The team was set up in March 2007 to target global sex traffickers.
Only last week, 6 offenders were jailed for trafficking.
The closure means the loss of the only specialist operational team this country has ever had.

For the real life horror stories behind the trade, as well as campaigns, check out ECPAT and Stop the Traffik.

And on a different human story, have you heard about 13 year old, Hannah Jones?
Hannah was diagnosed with leukaemia when she was 5 and has been in and out of hospital ever since.
The drugs she was given caused a hole to develop in her heart.

Though the leukaemia has not returned, Hannah now needs a further combination of drugs and a pacemaker to deal with her heart condition.
She can move very little without becoming breathless and was told the only solution is for her to have a heart transplant.

This would be no cure.
For starters, she might not survive the op.
Even if she did, the leukaemia could return.
The new heart would last a maximum of ten years.
She would need constant drug treatment.

Hannah declined, saying she would prefer to spend what remains of her life with family and friends and in the care of her mother, a specialist intensive care nurse.

Desperately sad, eh?
But what happened next is enough to make your head spin.

The family received a phone call from the child protection officer at Hereford Hospital.
They were told the hospital were applying for a High Court order to forcibly remove Hannah from her parents' custody as they were 'preventing her treatment'.
The implication was that Hannah could be forced to have the operation against her will and also be removed from her parents' care.
The following day the officer interviewed Hannah in her bedroom at home.
As a result of Hannah's eloquence, the case was thankfully abandoned.
Though not before she'd been forced to go through this terrifying additional ordeal.


Photo: SWNS .com

Now who was it who sat in an office, looked at Hannah's case and thought that this could possibly have been in her best interests?

11 comments:

leslie said...

That decision maker in that office... never learned to color outside the lines.

wordtryst said...

Wow. That is one amazing little girl. As for the rest - un-freaking-believable.

Debi said...

Shocking, innit?

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.