Thursday, October 28

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Enforce ‘Plan B’ immediately or risk winter crisis
Featured, United Kingdom

Enforce ‘Plan B’ immediately or risk winter crisis

Amid rising Covid-19 cases, Matthew Taylor chief executive of the NHS Confederation, has urged the Government to implement the back-up strategy which involves measures including bringing back mandatory face coverings in public places. The NHS Confederation’s warning comes as coronavirus deaths in the UK rose to their highest daily level since early March, while cases are at their highest for almost three months. Downing Street said it was keeping a very close eye on rising case rates, but added the Prime Minister has absolutely no plan to introduce Plan B, which could also involve introducing vaccine passports for nightclub entry. The NHS Confederation is the membership organisation that brings together, supports and speaks for the whole healthcare system in England, Wales and Northern...
UK risks stumbling into winter crisis, PM warned
Featured, United Kingdom

UK risks stumbling into winter crisis, PM warned

'Plan B' coronavirus restrictions must be enforced immediately to prevent the UK stumbling to a winter crisis, an NHS leader has warned. NHS Confederation chief executive Matthew Taylor has urged the government to bring back certain measures, including mandatory face coverings in public places. His remarks came as the UK recorded 223 COVID-related deaths on Tuesday - the highest number of daily fatalities since 9 March. A further 43,738 coronavirus cases were also reported in the latest 24-hour period, and on Monday, the UK saw the highest number of new infections since mid-July. Although Downing Street has said it is keeping a very close eye on rising case rates, a spokesperson warned the prime minister has absolutely no plan to introduce Plan B. If this strategy was enforced, people...
Met Police officer cleared over moped rider’s death during chase
Featured, United Kingdom

Met Police officer cleared over moped rider’s death during chase

A Metropolitan Police officer has been cleared of causing the death by dangerous driving of an 18-year-old man during a high-speed chase. Pc Paul Summerson, 44, was prosecuted over the pursuit of moped rider Lewis Johnson 18, and his pillion passenger Louis Kyriacou, 19, through Stoke Newington north London earlier this year. He was found not guilty at Kingston Crown Court on Tuesday of one count of causing death by dangerous driving and one count of causing serious injury by dangerous driving. The police believed Mr Johnson and his passenger were involved in a smash and grab theft on February 9, 2016 before the chase. The court heard that Pc Summerson chased Mr Johnson and his passenger in a marked police BMW, reaching speeds of more than 50mph, along Stoke Newington High Street and ...
Muslim group to issue hate crime support after killing of David Amess MP
Featured, United Kingdom

Muslim group to issue hate crime support after killing of David Amess MP

Zara Mohammed, the secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain, said that mosques in and around Southend were devastated by the killing of the local MP and they had regarded him as a member of their family. Britain’s leading Muslim organisation is to issue new guidance to help British Somalis and other individuals and mosques deal with any incidents of hatred emerging in the aftermath of Sir David Amess’s death. This is a heinous crime and we utterly condemn it, Mohammed said. Nobody in the local Muslim community could believe how anybody could brutally murder anyone, never mind Sir David, who was so engaged with them. But she added there was definitely an apprehension for Muslim communities at this time after it emerged that Ali Harbi Ali, the 25-year-old man arrested on suspici...
UK could suspend Northern Ireland Protocol to safeguard peace
Featured, United Kingdom

UK could suspend Northern Ireland Protocol to safeguard peace

Britain is ready if necessary to suspend the Northern Ireland Protocol in order to safeguard the peace process, Brexit Minister Lord Frost has warned. In a keynote speech in Lisbon, Lord Frost said the protocol, agreed with the EU as part of the UK’s divorce settlement, was not working and that fundamental change was necessary if it was to survive. He said the UK was prepared to trigger Article 16 of the protocol which allows either side to override large parts of the agreement if that could not be achieved. It is this Government, the UK Government that governs Northern Ireland as it does the rest of the UK, he said. Northern Ireland is not EU territory. It is our responsibility to safeguard peace and prosperity and that may include using Article 16 if necessary. Northern Ireland is n...
Tory MP embroiled in race row after mixing up Nadhim Zahawi and Sajid Javid
Featured, United Kingdom

Tory MP embroiled in race row after mixing up Nadhim Zahawi and Sajid Javid

A senior Tory MP has been asked to step back from his public activities with St John Ambulance after he allegedly confused two senior Asian ministers at a reception in Parliament. James Gray, the member for North Wiltshire, is said to have mixed up Nadhim Zahawi with Sajid Javid, the Health Secretary, when introducing the former at the event, before reportedly stating: They all look the same to me. Mr Zahawi, who was at the time the UK’s vaccine minister, is said to have confronted the MP about the remark afterwards. Mr Gray has denied making the remark or that he was spoken to by Mr Zahawi afterwards. The incident is said to have occurred on September 8 in front of 50 guests, including the Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, with Mr Gray hosting the reception to thank St John Ambulance v...
UK faces tough competition with EU for lorry drivers
Featured, United Kingdom

UK faces tough competition with EU for lorry drivers

The UK faces a competitive battle with EU countries to attract more lorry drivers and ease the fuel and food supply crisis, a cabinet minister has admitted. It comes as the government announced a U-turn on its emergency visa scheme, relenting to pressure from food and fuel industry chiefs by extending its temporary visa schemes beyond Christmas Eve. The visa scheme for nearly 5,000 foreign food haulage drivers – who can arrive from late October – will now be extended to the end of February in a desperate bid to avoid chaos over the festive period. Some 300 of the haulage drivers will be encouraged to come to Britain immediately and allowed to stay until the end of March. Health secretary Sajid Javid said he was confident the scheme would encourage more EU drivers to work in the UK. Of...
Sarah Everard family haunted by the horror of daughter’s murder
Featured, United Kingdom

Sarah Everard family haunted by the horror of daughter’s murder

Wayne Couzens seized Everard, 33, from a London street on 3 March, keeping her captive using his police handcuffs before strangling her with his police belt and then burning her body. On Wednesday, the first day of Couzens’s sentencing hearing at the Old Bailey in central London, Everard’s parents and sister described the multiple agonies they endured, first not knowing where she was when she disappeared, and then waiting to find out how she had died and being unable to say goodbye because her body had been burned. Everard’s mother, Susan, said: “In her last hours she was faced with brutality and terror, alone with someone intent on doing her harm. The thought of it is unbearable. I am haunted by the horror of it. I am repulsed by the thought of Wayne Couzens and what he did to Sarah....
Carry on as normal: Transport Secretary
Featured, United Kingdom

Carry on as normal: Transport Secretary

The transport secretary Grant Shapps said the sooner people returned to their normal habits and stopped panic buying petrol and diesel, the sooner the fuel shortage crisis would ease. The first very tentative signs of stabilisation are being seen on petrol forecourts, Grant Shapps has said, following days of long queues and closed pumps at some filling stations across the country. A lot of petrol is now being transferred into people's cars and there are now the first very tentative signs of stabilisation in the forecourt storage which won't be reflected in the queues as yet, but it's the first time we've seen more petrol in the petrol stations itself, he said. I think as the industry said yesterday the sooner we can all return to our normal buying habits, the sooner the situation will...
Chris Whitty issues stark warning children who don’t get jab will catch Covid
Featured, United Kingdom

Chris Whitty issues stark warning children who don’t get jab will catch Covid

Virtually any child aged between 12 and 15 who doesn’t get vaccinated will catch Covid at some point, England’s Chief Medical Officer said on Wednesday. Professor Chris Whitty said unvaccinated children are likely to get an infection at some point between 12 and 15. He was facing questions from MPs on the Education Committee about the inclusion of children in the Government’s Covid-19 vaccination programme. Deputy Chief Medical Officer Jonathan Van-Tam added that because the Delta variant is at least 60 per cent more infectious than the Alpha variant we are not looking at a theoretical risk of children 12-17 becoming infected. I think it is really quite inevitable that they will be so at some point. He said they may be infected at a point in their educational careers, such as during GC...