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Welsh Government news-in-brief

Created on 20/11/2017 @ 09:23
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“Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility” – Huw Irranca-Davies

Everyone in society has a responsibility to protect and safeguard children and adults from abuse and neglect, Minister for Children and Social Care, Huw Irranca-Davies has said.

Minister for Children and Social Care, Huw Irranca-Davies said:“The abuse and neglect of children and vulnerable adults is not acceptable, and its prevention is a major priority for the Welsh Government. That’s why we’ve introduced a new law that that strengthens the arraignments for safeguarding children and adults in Wales.

“It’s vitally important that we encourage people who have suffered abuse and neglect to come forward and share their experiences with the appropriate authorities, so that everyone can learn and recognise the signs if someone is being abused, and to prevent it happening in the future.”

Increase in alcohol-related deaths in Wales – new report shows

There were 504 alcohol-related deaths in Wales in 2016, an increase of 8.9% from 2015, a new Welsh Government report on substance misuse shows.

Health Secretary, Vaughan Gething said: “Substance misuse is a major health issue that affects the well-being of individuals, families and communities across the length and breadth of Wales.

“Preventing future substance misuse is as important as treating the established problem. We know that the harm associated with alcohol misuse in particular is a pressing concern and that’s why there is now an urgent need to tackle the affordability of cheap, strong alcohol, through introducing a minimum unit price for the sale of alcohol.”

Projects which Get Creative with Cymraeg announced

£425,000 has been awarded to 26 innovative projects that promote Welsh in the community and Welsh language technology, the Minister for the Welsh Language and Lifelong learning, Eluned Morgan has announced.

The Minister said: “We want the use of Welsh to be a routine part of everyday life so that speakers at all levels feel confident in using it in formal and informal situations. The projects announced today will make it easier for people to use the language, whether face to face in the community and in the workplace or through digital platforms.” 

Winter resilience is coming with extra beds, Choose Well and My Winter Health Plan

Improved winter resilience plans are in place to deal with the seasonal winter challenges faced by NHS Wales, Health and Social Services Secretary Vaughan Gething has said.

Health Secretary Vaughan Gething said: “Winter is always a challenging time for our health and social care services and hard-working staff here in Wales, as it is across the UK.

“A wide range of positive actions are planned to further improve local and national resilience, including an increase in available bed capacity both in hospital and in the community to mitigate against the anticipated rise in the number of patients with multiple conditions who require admission to hospital over winter.”

Water protocol to protect consumers – and devolution settlement

An important milestone has been reached on Wales’ devolution journey with the introduction of a water protocol for England and Wales.

Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Planning and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths said: “The introduction of this protocol addresses an existing imbalance in the devolution settlement that could, in theory, result in UK Government Ministers intervening in matters that are the responsibility of the Welsh Government.

“I am pleased with the constructive and positive way in which both administrations have approached the drafting and implementation of an agreement which, importantly, means water consumers on both sides of the border are safeguarded”.

Rise in new affordable homes welcomed

Minster for Housing and Regeneration, Rebecca Evans has welcomed recently-published figures that show a 6 per cent rise in new affordable homes in Wales last year.

Rebecca Evans said: “Ensuring that people have a safe, warm and secure home is one of our key priorities. I am committed to increasing the housing supply in Wales and have an ambitious target of building 20,000 affordable homes during this term of government. I am therefore pleased to welcome today’s significant progress.”

European politicians in Wales to talk Brexit

Brexit and Wales’ relationship with Europe was top of the agenda when politicians from across the continent met the First Minister Carwyn Jones in Cardiff.

First Minister Carwyn Jones said: “While we have been consistently clear that we are not trying to undo Brexit, we have a range of shared interests, from trade to protecting the rights of UK and EU citizens, which must be prioritised in the negotiations.

“This event and our joint declaration demonstrate that while Brexit has an impact on all European countries and regions, it must not become a stumbling block to our established strong relations that benefit us all.”

Small and rural schools set to benefit from £2.5m funding – Kirsty Williams

Pupils across Wales are set to benefit from a new £2.5 million Welsh Government small and rural schools grant.

Kirsty Williams said: “We are taking action and providing new funding to help small and rural schools deal with the unique challenges they face, such as small pupil numbers and issues in recruiting head teachers and staff.”

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