Taxi drivers in County Durham are to be trained to spot tell-tale signs of sexual exploitation of children.
All Hackney carriage and private hire drivers licensed by Durham County Council will undergo Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) awareness training.
It's after more than half of people responding to a consultation supported such action.
Already 683 taxi drivers – almost 40 per cent of the 1,757 drivers licensed by the council – have received CSE awareness training on a voluntary basis.
Further free training sessions have been arranged by the Durham Local Safeguarding Children Board.
ALL applicants will be required to undergo the training before they can be licensed.
Existing drivers who haven’t already completed one of the training sessions will have to attend one by 1 September 2016.
“One of the primary aims of taxi licensing is to protect and safeguard the public, especially our children and young people who are among the most vulnerable groups in society,
“By making it a requirement that all drivers undergo CSE training, we hope that we can help them spot signs of abuse and act on it accordingly.”
Teaching assistants are demonstrating outside Durham Council against proposed changes to their contracts.Read the full story ›
Improvement works to the changing rooms and poolside areas have been ongoing since November 2015.Read the full story ›
Councillors in County Durham have agreed to close 12 of their 17 adult day centres, because of falling numbers of people using them and budget cuts.
"Young people are choosing to go to other places within their local community such as theatre, cinema etc and the cost of running these centres is another look at.
We have to save £1.59 million and what we will do is work with people who have been using these services on a one to one basis and offer the support that is required."
The council has said it will offer support to find alternatives for those affected, and will keep five centres open to provide specialist services for people with complex needs.
These five centres will be: Durham Pathways, Pity Me; Spennymoor Pathways, Spennymoor Leisure Centre; Newton Aycliffe Pathways, Aycliffe Leisure Centre; Peterlee Pathways; and Stanley Pathways, Louisa Leisure Centre.
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Some students with disabilities in County Durham will no longer be entitled to free bus travel if new council proposals are approved.Read the full story ›
An historic charter issued by King John just a few years before the signing of the Magna Carter is going on display in Durham.
The document, which dates back to 1201, describes the granting of Teesdale Forest to Henry fitz Hervey. Written on parchment in latin, the charter has remains of its original wax seal which is attached with silk thread.
Members of the public will be able to see the charter during a free drop-in session at Durham County Record Office, in County Hall, on Thursday 30 July.
Durham County Council is taking legal action after its regeneration masterplan was criticised by a planning inspector.
The council drew up a twenty year blueprint to create thousands of jobs and homes as well as retail sites and two relief roads. The scheme was left in limbo earlier this year after the inspector described parts of it 'unrealistic' and 'undeliverable'.
Since then, the council had called for the plan to be re-examined. That request was turned down and the authority says it had no choice but to seek a judicial review. Papers have been lodged at the High Court in Leeds.
Durham County Council say fly-tippers are more likely than ever to be caught red-handed as extra CCTV cameras are being set up at hotspots throughout County Durham: