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RECORD VIEW: Add insult to injuries.

LISA Potts is everyone's heroine. She is the ordinary girl who faced a madman with a machete and suffered horrendous wounds to save the children in her care.

It is impossible to put a price on that kind of courage.

And, of course, the lives of the children she saved are too precious to talk of in terms of money.

Lisa herself paid a heavy price for her unselfish bravery. Apart from the continuing mental trauma, she has undergone a series of painful operations attempting to repair the physical damage. But she had been left unable to return to the job she loved.

Now officialdom has told her what all that courage and suffering is worth - pounds 49,000, including a paltry pounds 250 for scarring to her body, pounds 750 for loss of power of one hand, pounds 20,000 for 'mental disorder' and a mere pounds 28,000 for loss of her life's career.

That award from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority is an insult, especially when compared to the civil court pay-outs to so-called celebrities for hurt feelings.

Chef Marco Pierre White got pounds 100,000 damages because his cooking was questioned and former England football manager Kevin Keegan pocketed pounds 150,000 for a slur on his reputation.

If these awards are regarded as fair, then the pitiful offer to Lisa is an utter disgrace. The CICA has treated Lisa according to a strict 'price list' for injuries - but no official tariff can take account of individual suffering or exceptional sacrifice.

For the sake of ALL victims of the madmen and thugs in our midst, that system has to be changed.

Lisa has been given the George Medal by a grateful nation. Heroines and heroes cannot live on decorations and ribbons.
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Copyright 2001 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Leader
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Feb 7, 2001
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