News Digest: 2 September

Third Sector's pick of today's top news stories, from credit crunch-defying charity shops to calls for the prescription of antipsychotic drugs to be better regulated.

Charity shops are beating the credit crunch, survey shows
Charity shop profits have risen by 7.4 per cent in the past year, according to the Charity Shops Survey 2008. Sue Ryder Care shops increased their profits by 35 per cent, and Age Concern England, Save the Children and the Children's Society all saw profits rise by more than 15 per cent. The biggest growth came from the Salvation Army, which saw its profits rise by 64 per cent.
See BBC News for full story

Charities condemn Dame Helen Mirren for rape comments

Leading charity figures have criticised Dame Helen Mirren after she said in an interview that women who fall victim to date rape should not necessarily be allowed to prosecute. In the interview with GQ, Mirren said that if a woman consented to sex and then changed her mind it was a tricky area that should not necessarily lead to prosecution. Eileen Maitland, Information and Research Officer for Rape Crisis Scotland, said: I think it is very disappointing. As far as we are concerned, rape is rape and it should always be prosecuted.
See The Scotsman for full story

Charity criticises Government over IVF budget cuts
A leading infertility charity has slammed the Government for cutting funding for IVF treatment. The Infertility Network’s Susan Seenan said the charity had been working with the Department of Health to get primary care trusts to follow guidance from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), which recommends that women aged between 23 and 39 receive three free

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Charity calls for changes to prescribing of antipsychotic medicine
A leading charity has called for changes to the way antipsychotic drugs are prescribed after a study published in the British Medical Journal found that dementia patients who take antipsychotic drugs are at a significantly increased risk of having a stroke. Neil Hunt, chief executive of the Alzheimer's Society, suggested that the over-prescription of such drugs is a serious breach of human rights.
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