It can’t be right that victim of dog attack won’t receive a single penny in compensation.
IF Jane Chippendale had been left scarred for life after being attacked by a complete stranger, she would now – quite rightly – be in line for substantial compensation.
But because her injuries happened to be the result of a mauling by dogs, she won’t receive a penny.
Of course, the most important thing in this appalling case was that the owner of the dogs, who Leeds Crown Court heard stood by and watched as Jane was savaged, was brought to justice.
Philip Thomas was jailed for 12 months for the attack, after the court was told he created terror by taking his trio of pets into Harehills Park without having them on leads.
Such irresponsible owners should expect to be punished when their animals attack others, particularly when they have apparently shown such a blatant disregard for public safety.
Yet the issue of compensation in such cases is also one that demands to be put under the spotlight.
How can it be right that Jane will not receive the sort of compensation afforded to other victims?
The Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority will pay out for dog attacks – but only in instances where a dog has been deliberately set on someone.
The jail term handed out to Philip Thomas indicates that there was a degree of criminality to this attack – and in such cases the guidelines should be changed to reflect that fact.
Pair fully deserving of their royal honours
WHAT unites inspiring individuals like rugby league legend Kevin Sinfield and school crossing patroller Sue Yardley, who lead Yorkshire’s recipients in the Queen’s Birthday Honours?
It’s their willingness to put others first – whether it be the longstanding Leeds Rhinos’ talisman dedicating his MBE to past and present team-mates, or Mrs Yardley braving all weathers to help pupils cross the road outside Scholes Elmet Primary School on the outskirts of Leeds.
Their commitment epitomises the very best of Yorkshire life and makes them fully deserving of the royal recognition they have now been given.