Archives for February 3rd, 2000

FRONTAL ASSAULT ON BACK PAIN

Headlines, PublicNet: 3 February, 2000

The problem of back pain in the workplace is being tackled head on in 19 projects in the private and public sectors. The projects will be funded by a joint Department of Health and Health and Safety Executive ‘Back in Work’ initiative with a 700,000 pound budget.More than 330 organisations from around the country applied for funding from the Back in Work scheme. Back pain is the largest single cause of ill health at work and sickness absence. More than 11 million working days are lost each year due to back pain and this painful condition is estimated to cost 5 billion pounds.

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ONE STOP GOVERNMENT INTERNET SHOP LAUNCHED

Headlines, PublicNet: 3 February, 2000

Trials of the Government’s one stop Internet shop have started this week. The website, known as the ‘Government Portal’ will eventually become the way into all government services.The first service on the Portal is a change of address system. Moving house can involve telling the Inland Revenue, Benefits Agency and the Vehicle Licensing Agency about the change of address. The system under trial transmits the address details to all the organisations that need to know. To make the trial realistic, focus groups are inputting imaginary changes of address and their reactions are being collated by MORI. The aim is to find out how easy, practical and secure people find the system.

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PUBLIC PROCUREMENT DIRECTIVE IN THE EU

Abstracts, PublicNet: 3 February, 2000

3Martin S, Hartley K, Cox APublic Administration, (UK), 1999 Vol 77 No 2

Start page: 387. No of pages: 20

Sets out the background to the European procurement Directives, which were passed in the late 1980s and early 1990s to prevent the public sector in the various members states discriminating against foreign suppliers in their purchasing decisions. Outlines the economic arguments for non-discriminatory public purchasing and the opening up of national procurement markets. Focuses on local authorities, analyses the invitations to tender by country. Uses the contract award notices, published in the same journal, to investigate the proportion of purchasing contracts awards made to domestic and foreign suppliers. Concludes that the European Union legislation has failed to open up public procurement to international competition and uses a case study of a UK local authority to understand the degree of preferential purchasing that exists. Draws out the implications for further research and for European Union policy.

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