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Calls for Bryn to resign over council paedophile scandal

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backed brynTHERE are fresh calls today (Tuesday, July 15) for Wales’ highest paid council chief, Bryn Parry Jones, to resign. This time there is mounting pressure on him over the way Pembrokeshire County Council dealt with allegations about a former senior council youth worker who went on to be jailed for six years for sexually abusing a child.

And as a result of a BBC Wales Week In Week Out investigation into the case, the Children’s Commissioner for Wales says he wants to re-open the case files at the Council to discover whether children were left at risk. Children’s Commissioner Keith Towler told the BBC:

‘I’ll take look at it because I think what you’re raising there are very serious allegations. That probably needs an independent look. In terms of my responsibility as Children’s Commissioner, if I take the view that things happened to children in the past could help to improve the lives of children today then I certainly have got the powers of remit to take look at it.’

In 2005 a whistle-blower warned bosses that Mik Smith was behaving inappropriately with children and could pose as a risk – but Smith, from Haverfordwest, was given a verbal warning.

mikeThis month paedophile Smith was jailed for six years for sexually abusing an eight-year-old boy.

The offences happened after he’d been sacked. Whistle-blower Sue Thomas – who originally warned bosses about Smith’s inappropriate behaviour – thinks that the Council made a serious mistake when they gave Mik Smith a verbal warning in 2005:

‘I still can’t get my head round it because there were so many good hard-working professional people that came forward with complaints – I cannot understand why we were not listened to.

I can’t comprehend what type of person in management wouldn’t listen to it and wouldn’t be concerned and wouldn’t want to deal with it – I’m lost for words.’

Further complaints were made about Smith in 2009 and 2011, and he was eventually sacked in 2012 after a re-investigation was ordered by the Welsh Government.

Mik Smith’s recent court case has prompted questions about whether the Council should have sacked Smith sooner and whether it did enough to protect children who he came into contact with.

The Council’s Chief Executive Bryn Parry-Jones said that there were significant failings in the disciplinary standards used to handle the case. The Council says that its investigation at the time revealed no evidence of criminal activity, but it regretted that there were significant failings in the disciplinary standards in its education directorate in 2005 when allegations were made about Smith.

joyceJoyce Watson AM says this is the latest in a series of failures by the Council to properly protect vulnerable children. She wants Bryn Parry Jones – who earns more than the £228,000 a year – to step down. She told The Heralds:

‘I think it’s time for him to go and I’m not shy of saying that – he has been the permanency in all of the negative reports that have been there and there have been a number of them. You cannot be the highest paid Chief Executive in Wales because you are worth that money, and reside over failure. Repeated failure.’

The programme has spoken to an independent social worker who investigated the allegations against Mik Smith on behalf of the Council in 2005. The social worker told the BBC that she was “surprised” that Smith had been dealt with by way of a verbal warning at the time.

Bryn Parry Jones said that the council’s investigation at the time revealed no evidence of criminal activity and that since that time the Council has completely changed its procedures and management of the Education department and is confident that past failings would not be repeated now. The Council also said that no manager from the former Education directorate involved in the decision-making in 2005 is currently employed by the Authority.”

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Helen mills

    July 15, 2014 at 8:23 am

    Mr Parry be true to the wonderful people of pembrokeshire & more so to yourself & step down. No one in the sector you work in should be awarded the salary you take from these wonderful people who pay your salary be honest tell me what you do in a day to get this amount as you have minions that work for you so you sit back feet up as you can all see in this article.
    A young lad scared for the rest of his life but Smiths gratification in minutes & forgotten about until the next time, terror runs through that young lads body how dare you & Smith get away with us h behaviour?
    People of pembrokeshire need to shout louder.

  2. Tomos

    July 15, 2014 at 8:30 am

    Does any one think he’ll do the DECENT thing?

    There’s been no sign of that “weakness” in his personality, just sharp elbows getting to that tax funded trough and s** the weak,the disabled and the poor – who I always thought the state was there to help and support.

    Now we find out our children were not safe, we’ve had enough from the IPG about paying the most to get the best ** HOLLOW LAUGH** , PCC are just going from one calamity to the next –

    surely the memebers of this “party” must be SO ashamed of what has been done (or not done) in their names to get their special responsibility allowances – now they’ve found this sort of information they MUST get a back bone and think about the ppl of Pembrokeshire

  3. Peter Warrender

    July 15, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    I know is salary and pension pot plus car allowance are an abuse to the council tax payers of Pembrokeshire. The councillors who allowed this abuse should be sacked. On the paedophile front the buck should stop with him, he is the CEO so must take full responsibility for what happens within the PCC. What else is he being paid a massive salary for?

  4. Roy Mcgurn

    July 15, 2014 at 1:09 pm

    The Chief Executive is several layers removed from this case. His culpability, if any, stems from his cost cutting of council spending, particularly Social Services. Scandals such as this can hit even high spending authorities, so it is difficult to prove cost cutting is a direct cause of this case. However, in cutting costs, a culture of denial has permeated the authority, as some of their antics do not stand up to detailed scrutiny. (The recent irregularities in grants awarded in Pembroke Dock being an example.)If an investigation did indeed determine that this culture of denial was a primary cause of children being put at risk, then his position should be untenable.

  5. Paul Hill

    July 15, 2014 at 7:00 pm

    The man has a brass neck, he is’nt going to walk away from his gravy train, he’s surrounded himself with allies and they are all in the trough, they will just ignore this as usual…

  6. Lofty

    July 15, 2014 at 9:27 pm

    I was part of that investigation back in 2005 and witnessed first hand the inappropriate behaviour that monster carried out on our vulnerable young boys in his care. He lied, deceived and manipulated many to serve his own disgusting crime. I am pleased that all those who managed him have been removed from their posts and quite rightly so. We went through hell and lost a good colleague in the process – sacked due to his lies! I just hope and pray that justice will finally be done and BPJ is finally removed from his office too.

  7. Tomos

    July 16, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    I’m not discussing this case, only the principle – It looks as though ppl who did nothing when Cyril Smith or Jimmy saville was guilty of dreadfully corrupt things, may well have their or their families reputations shredded or may even go to jail for doing nothing when they are caught possibly 20/30 years after the guilty are long gone – only warning those who think they afre safe!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. woody

    July 16, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    Watched the documentary last night…Unbelievable! That the chief executive on 220k+ huge benefits per annum can wash his hands of this because he stated he was on holiday!!!!….Also he should be on his knees apologising to the very brave whistle blower after writing such a bombastic chauvinistic condescending letter in reply to her concerns. She lost her job over this and had to move out of the County while Bryn just went on holiday..Bryn Parry Jones needs to be pushed as his arrogance won\’t allow him to resign….No other institution in there right mind would leave this man alone in charge of washing dishes let alone being left in charge of managing millions of pounds of rate payers money …..Bryn Parry Jones and his cronies are a shambolic bunch of opportunistic amateurs riding the red wine jus gravy train.This is not the only scandal to hit Bryn and his lap dancing generals at the PCC…..when will the Welsh Assembly take a REAL interest in the internal incompetence and downright deceit that dogs this Council. I know of no one person who has a good word to say about this bunch of cowboys.Also was it true a memo went around the Council that nobody was allowed to talk to Bryn Parry Jones if they passed him in the council corridors as \”his mind was always on far greater and important things\” ?????..And does he really have a private lift installed to his own office????

  9. Milford Matters

    July 17, 2014 at 1:02 pm

    Teflon man will escape again – nothing sticks to this guy – he will supported by his Council Cabinet Colleques and survive till the next election.

  10. Keanjo

    July 17, 2014 at 6:02 pm

    Failure ,failure ,failure crisis, crisis ,crisis .When will it stop? When will someone assert their authority and help us ?

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Home office is ‘misleading the public’ over police funding, says Police and Crime Commissioner

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THE POLICE AND CRIME COMMISSIONER has told The Herald that he believes that the Home Office is ‘misleading the public’ that his force will have an increase in funding in 2019/2020.

On the face of it, it appears that Dyfed-Powys Police will have an increase in funding of £8.1 million in 2019/20. However this figure is based upon the presumption that PCC Dafydd Llywelyn will increase the current Band D property precept level by £24 annually.
After what he describes as a frustrating delay, the Government’s provisional grant funding settlement has been announced, which sets out the position for Dyfed-Powys Police for the 2019/20 financial year. On the face of it, it appears that Dyfed-Powys Police will have an increase in funding of £8.1 million in 2019/20. However this figure is based upon the presumption that PCC Dafydd Llywelyn will increase the current Band D property precept level by £24 annually.
PCC Dafydd Llywelyn said: “The way in which the Home Office and Central Government are misleading the public is disgraceful and I am very disappointed in the way this settlement once again shifts the burden onto local tax payers. I continue to try and do the right thing to protect our communities but I feel we are being let down by the Government in London as their actions are likely to impact on our local services.”
“I am currently consulting with the residents of Dyfed-Powys; asking if they would be willing to pay additional police precept to continue to safeguard our communities. Within the survey I have outlined the impact of for Dyfed-Powys Police and its communities. My decision will be made by listening to local communities and the professional advice of the Chief Constable.”
“I am working closely with the Chief Constable to critically review all aspects of the budget requirement. Given the scale of financial challenges that are faced, a precept increase will be unavoidable, but how much this is increased by should not be dictated by Government.”

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Police issue warning over sheep attacks in Pembrokeshire

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DYFED-POWYS POLICE has issued advice to pet owners following a spate of livestock worrying incidents in the Saundersfoot, Narberth and Crescelly areas.

There have been six reports of dog attacks on sheep in the past three weeks, one of which caused a dog to be shot after it was caught attacking sheep in Solva.

PC Gerwyn Davies of the Pembrokeshire Rural Crime Team, told The Herald: “It is important dogs are always kept on leads near livestock, but especially so at this time of year. Sheep are heavily in lamb and their numbers have increased because they come from high grounds in mid Wales for the winter.

“Sheep worrying can have a long term effect on ewes as they can lose pregnancies as a result of stress. This obviously has a negative impact on farmers who not only lose out financially, but it is also very upsetting.

“Sadly, three ewes have been killed and several more injured in the past few weeks. One family dog was shot in Solva after it attacked sheep, which is a sad situation for the dog’s owner and upsetting for the farmer.”

Farmers can legally shoot any dog if they believe it is the only reasonable way of stopping it worrying livestock. If your dog chases or attacks livestock you should make arrangements to contact the landowner/livestock owner.

Anyone who has information about, or wants to make a report of livestock worrying, can contact the Pembrokeshire Rural Crime Team by calling 101.

Dog owners are reminded of this advice when walking in the countryside:

  • Do not allow your dog to enter a field on its own and keep it under your control at all times.
  • Keep your dog on a lead when crossing through fields that contain livestock.
  • Stick to public right of ways.

When at home:

  • Make sure you know where your dog is at all times.
  • Ensure that your property is secure and that your dog cannot escape day or night.
  • If you know your dog has previously chased or attacked sheep then take responsible measures to prevent it happening again.
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New First Minister announces his cabinet

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THE FIRST MINISTER FOR WALES, Mark Drakeford, has today announced his new look cabinet to lead Wales. The First Minister said: “It is an enormous privilege for me to be appointed First Minister of Wales. Every leader needs a strong team around them, and I am delighted to introduce my new cabinet which is a strong mix of experience, talent and passion.

“Brexit is our greatest challenge.  In the extraordinary and regrettable circumstances created by the UK Government, it is vital that we prepare for all outcomes. I have retained Ministers in posts where their experience of Brexit preparation is key, while creating a new post to reflect the priority I attach to international relationships and trade.

“As a government we will continue to speak up for Wales, to fight our country’s corner and make sure the government in London is never in any doubt at all of what matters to the people of Wales.”

Cabinet and Deputy Ministers

Vaughan Gething
Minister for Health and Social Services  – Y Gweinidog Iechyd a Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol

Julie Morgan
Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services – Y Dirprwy Weinidog Iechyd a Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol

Eluned Morgan
Minister for International Relations and the Welsh Language – Gweinidog y Gymraeg a Chysylltiadau Rhyngwladol

Dafydd Elis-Thomas
Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism – Y Dirprwy Weinidog Diwylliant, Chwaraeon a Thwristiaeth

Ken Skates
Minister for Economy and Transport – Gweinidog yr Economi a Thrafnidiaeth

Lee Waters
Deputy Minister for Economy and Transport – Dirprwy Weinidog yr Economi a Thrafnidiaeth

Julie James
Minister for Housing and Local Government – Y Gweinidog Tai a Llywodraeth Leol

Hannah Blythyn
Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government – Y Dirprwy Weinidog Tai a Llywodraeth Leol

Rebecca Evans
Minister for Finance and Trefnydd – Y Gweinidog Cyllid a’r Trefnydd

Kirsty Williams
Minister for Education – Y Gweinidog Addysg

Lesley Griffiths
Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs – Gweinidog yr Amgylchedd, Ynni a Materion Gwledig

Jeremy Miles
Counsel General Designate and Brexit Minister – Y Darpar Gwnsler Cyffredinol a’r Gweinidog Brexit

Jane Hutt
Deputy Minister and Chief Whip – Y Dirprwy Weinidog a’r Prif Chwip

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