Paper Round

Oxfam has been forced to hire burly minders to protect terrified staff at its shop in Didsbury, Manchester, after elderly volunteers complained of being abused and threatened two or three times a week.

A manager who caught a thief stealing chocolates was even threatened with an iron bar. So the charity has hired two security guards and set up CCTV to fight the problem.

"It's absolutely shocking," shop manager Wendy Elliott told The Sun. "The people responsible were often respectable, middle-class people. We are not talking hoodies and teenagers."

The chief executive of mental health charity Sane has slammed the media and public for treating the breakdown of pop star Britney Spears as entertainment.

In comments reported by the Gigwise website, Marjorie Wallace said: "However sad this latest incident may be for Britney Spears herself, the fact that it is exploited as part of the 'must-have' breakdown of any record-breaking singer serves only to belittle her genuine suffering. She is a victim of an exploitative industry, a sensationalist media and a public who seem to enjoy voyeuristically the troubles of superstars and celebrities."

The Independent reported that Compassion in World Farming questioned claims by chef and TV presenter Jamie Oliver that Sainsbury's has "the most to be proud of" on the issue of stocking ethically produced poultry.

The chef wrote an open letter to the supermarket, which pays him £1.2m a year to appear in its ads, after newspapers reported that he had criticised Sainsbury's for failing to take part in a televised debate about factory farming. His assertion that it has the best record on the issue doesn't square with the charity's findings. In its Compassionate Supermarket Awards, Sainsbury's came fourth.

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