Nurses vote to back decriminalisation of prostitution

Royal College of Nurses to lobby UK government in move to protect sex workers’ health

The union representing Britain’s nurses will start lobbying governments across the UK to decriminalise prostitution in order to safeguard sex workers and improve their health.

The Royal College of Nursing voted by an overwhelming majority at its annual conference to ask ministers in London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast to make the change.

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Mental health no longer a secret folded away in sport’s dressing rooms | Richard Williams

Danny Rose has been open in tackling his demons and that can only be a good thing in the wider world

Danny Rose remembered getting angry. He’d suffered his first really serious injury and the team were doing well without him. “I didn’t socialise, I wasn’t sleeping, I was looking to fall out with anybody.” Gareth Southgate and the Duke of Cambridge were among the small audience listening intently as the Tottenham left-back described the signs of his depression.

Related: Elite sport is gradually waking up to widespread mental health issues | Sean Ingle

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Icy intimacy: the artist who performs on a bed of frozen thoughts

Chronic fatigue has left Amy Rosa ‘watching life through glass’. Her new show urges viewers to make vulnerability a radical act

‘We’re not taught how to process difficult emotions,” says performance artist Amy Rosa, “so we just hold on to them.” Every day for the past year, Rosa sat at her desk with a two-litre bottle of spring water. In an act of meditation, she concentrated on her thoughts from that day and imagined transferring them to the liquid. She then froze the feelings in the bottles, which she has been storing all over Scotland with friends. Rosa kept some of them in her bedroom: “I don’t think I’m going to be able to sleep without the hum of two freezers now.”

In a three-hour performance entitled There Is a Silence, under the enormous stained-glass windows of Glasgow University’s Chapel, Rosa piles together her frozen thoughts, extracted from the plastic, and invites an audience to join her in letting the feelings go.

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When survival is a popularity contest: the heartbreak of crowdfunding healthcare

A growing number of Britons are turning to online fundraising for essential treatment in a desperate, ‘Dickensian’ attempt to get around NHS shortfalls. But does it work?

Heather Bellamy’s March appointment at the Queen Elizabeth hospital in King’s Lynn didn’t go well. She had been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia five years before, in December 2014; now, her doctor explained gently, she had run out of options on the NHS. Bellamy, 48, would be starting a chemotherapy drug called azacitidine that could extend her life expectancy from two months to six. Her doctor asked if she had a bucket list. “I felt crushed,” she remembers.

Speaking one month on, Bellamy – a senior practice nurse and a mother of four from Downham Market in Norfolk – isn’t chasing her dreams of bungee jumping or swimming with dolphins. Instead, she is fundraising online for an experimental cancer drug, enasidenib, which has been approved by the US authorities but is not available on the NHS.

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What does a woman sound like? Vocal training helps trans women find their voices

Achieving a higher voice can be essential to embracing a female identity, and it can serve as a cloak of protection from bias and bigotry

“I always thought it was normal to hate hearing yourself talk, but at some point you realize that other people don’t think ‘I want to vomit’ after hearing themselves speak,” Lilian Primrose told me.

Lilian, a 30-year-old computer programmer, began her transition from male to female in September of 2017. I met her in February at a coffee shop in Greenwich Village. She sat across from me, proudly presenting as her authentic self and eager to speak about her gender transition journey. Donning dark lipstick and shoulder-length wavy brown hair, Primrose explained how she had come a long way from the confused isolated boy she used to be.

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Limiting screen use for one week may improve teenagers’ sleep – study

Reducing blue light exposure at night may decrease fatigue and mood swings, researchers find

Sleep problems suffered by teenagers can be improved after just one week by limiting evening exposure to light-emitting screens on mobile phones, tablets and computers, a study suggests.

The research indicates that by reducing their exposure to blue light-emitting devices in the evening, adolescents can improve their sleep quality and reduce symptoms of fatigue, lack of concentration and mood swings after seven days.

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Too many children in England’s mental health hospitals unnecessarily – report

NHS system for children with learning disability or autism is letting them down, says commissioner

Too many children are admitted to mental health hospitals unnecessarily and spending years in institutions, according to a report.

The Children’s Commissioner for England is concerned that the current system of support for those with learning disability or autism is letting children down.

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Why the senators’ race matters in reporting the Alabama abortion ban | Paul Chadwick

Readers argued it was wrong to highlight that white men voted in the measure. But lack of representation is central to the story

Why, demanded several readers, does this headline refer to race: “These 25 Republicans – all white men – just voted to ban abortion in Alabama.” It was part of the Guardian’s coverage of the southern US state’s new measure. The sole exception to the ban is serious risk to the health of the woman; pregnancies resulting from incest or rape are not excepted. Of the 27 Republican men in Alabama’s 35-seat senate, 25 voted for the law.

Distilled, the readers’ view was that although it was understandable that the headline would emphasise male dominance, it was wrong to highlight race, too. Wrote one: “It detracts and distracts from the real outrage, which is that they’re all male, and they’re all Republican, rather than their skin colour.” Another reader thought that the reference to race implied that the votes were motivated by racism. Another wanted the emphasis to stay on the personal moral beliefs of the legislators, whichever way they voted.

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Access to abortion is a basic human right | Letters

Lesley Regan, president of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, condemns abortion laws in Alabama and Northern Ireland, and Nik Wood supports Gaby Hinsliff’s call for pro-choice men to speak up

Last week the state of Alabama signed into law a bill that prevents women accessing safe abortion services, even in cases of rape and incest (Report, 16 May). Doctors who perform abortion will face up to 99 years in jail. We expect our government to condemn this law in the harshest possible terms and to uphold the determination by the UN that access to abortion is a human right. We expect our government to stand strong with those who will tirelessly fight this injustice by raising this issue at the highest possible levels.

We know that sanctions do not deter women from seeking abortion, but drive them to unsafe treatments or force them to travel to other places. But the voice of the UK is diminished and its authority undermined by the even more draconian abortion laws in Northern Ireland, which criminalise women as well as doctors.

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Julianna Margulies on her shocking Ebola drama: ‘I panicked in my hazmat suit!’

The star of ER and The Good Wife is back – as a doctor fighting to save humanity. She gives her bodyguard the slip to talk about our imperilled planet – and her love of Sussex A-roads

Before I meet Julianna Margulies, I spend three days staring at her bodyguard. He’s impossible to miss: one of those men whose every attempt to blend in flounders. Margulies and I are in Lille, judges at the Series Mania television festival, although our experiences differ a little. My cloak of anonymity allows me to roam the city unpestered. Margulies, however, has been a TV mainstay for 25 years, with roles in two juggernaut shows, ER and The Good Wife. Everybody knows who she is, hence Muscles.

He’s even there at the start of our interview, looming in the doorway of our room at the Chamber of Commerce. As I ease past and close the door, I ask if it isn’t a pain being constantly tailed. She smiles and says: “Three years ago, I was the guest of honour when they held this festival in Paris. When I get there, they say, ‘We have detail for you.’ I say, ‘Guys, I don’t need a bodyguard.’ But they won’t budge. We get to the hotel and I say to my bodyguard, ‘My husband and I are going out to lunch. You go home, please.’ So we left the hotel and I’ve never seen anything like it. People were everywhere. We backed into the hotel and my husband called the bodyguard and said, ‘We made a mistake!’ He said, ‘I know – I’m just around the corner.’”

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‘Women will die’: how new abortion bans will harm the most vulnerable

Women of color and poor women will be disproportionately affected by new restrictions across the US, opponents say

On the floor of the Alabama state senate this week, a robotic voice read nine pages of legalese that would define a new reality for women in the state: abortion would be a crime, starting from the moment a woman knows she is pregnant. Doctors who perform the procedure could face up to 99 years in prison.

Then senators’ names were called one by one, and they cast their votes. There were 25 yes votes, enough for the bill to pass easily. Every single one was cast by a white man.

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NHS England loses 6,000 mental health nurses in 10 years

Recruitment and training crisis ‘hits the most vulnerable in society’, says Royal College of Nursing

The number of mental health nurses in England has slumped by more than a tenth over the past decade, new figures have revealed. This is despite commitments from both Theresa May and her predecessor, David Cameron, to boost resources for mental health services, which many medical professionals say are now in crisis.

The total mental health nursing workforce has decreased by 10.6% since 2009, according to the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).

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Trump backs abortion in cases of rape or incest, contradicting Alabama law

President suggests abortion will be election issue, tweeting ‘we must stick together and Win for Life in 2020’

Donald Trump, in a series of late night posts on Twitter, has outlined a less restrictive view of abortion than that just passed by Alabama’s Republican state government.

Alabama now bans abortion except if there is a “serious health risk” to the mother, with no exceptions for rape and incest, but the president says he favours making an exception of cases of rape and incest.

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