Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Friday 25 Sep 2020

1

Sunak warned winter scheme won’t stop job losses

Rishi Sunak has been warned that his new jobs scheme will not be enough to stop a tidal wave of redundancies unless industries such as hospitality and the arts receive further support. The government will cover up to a fifth of the wages of people who go back to work on a part-time basis, however, nightclubs, music venues and theatres cannot access wage subsidies as they are not allowed to reopen.

2

Republican leader pledges orderly transition of power

Republican leader Mitch McConnell has vowed that there will be an “orderly” post-election transition. A day after President Donald Trump refused to commit to stepping down, the influential US senator said that, regardless of who wins the 3 November presidential election, there will be a peaceful inauguration on 20 January. The president currently trails his rival, Democrat Joe Biden, in national opinion polls.

3

BRC says shoppers will pay the price of no-deal Brexit

The British Retail Consortium has warned shoppers that they will feel the impact of a no-deal Brexit at supermarket tills. The BRC said tariffs would add £3.1bn a year to the cost of importing food and drink. A spokesperson said the Covid-19 pandemic was “already making life hard for consumers”, adding: “A no-deal Brexit will have a massive impact on their ability to afford essential goods.”

4

‘Stark warning’ as record Covid cases are recorded

A senior Public Health England official has spoken of a “stark warning to us all” as a record number of new cases of Covid-19 were reported yesterday. The UK recorded 6,634 cases on Thursday, including 40 deaths, bringing the overall number of fatalities to 41,902. Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that almost 10,000 people a day in the UK are believed to be contracting coronavirus.

5

Royals tighten belts after accounts reveal big spending

Royal accounts could suffer a potential £35m shortfall due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. And Buckingham Palace is “belt-tightening” in preparation, with royal accounts showing the Duke and Duchess of Sussex last year took flights to southern Africa at a cost of nearly £250,000, while Prince Andrew took a £16,000 charter plane to a Northern Ireland golf tournament, The Guardian says.

6

Morrisons brings back rationing amid panic buying

Morrisons has become the first major UK supermarket to reinstate rationing on a range of essential items as Covid-19 cases rise. With concern increasing over a return to panic buying following the tightening of coronavirus restrictions, the grocery chain confirmed that it has introduced a purchase limit of three on products such as toilet roll and disinfectant.

7

French police probe attack on woman for wearing skirt

Police in France are investigating after a young woman said she was attacked by three men and beaten in public for wearing a skirt. The 22-year-old student said she was punched in the face “by three individuals who complained about me wearing a skirt”. There is growing anger in France over a series of incidents involving physical and verbal abuse towards women due to their attire.

8

Ministers may ban fur imports after Brexit

The government plans to ban the import of wild animal fur when Britain leaves the European Union. Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park, the Defra minister with responsibility for animal welfare, has described the fur trade as “one of the grimmest of human activities” and argued that Brexit means that “whatever barriers may have prevented us from raising standards on imports at the point of entry will have gone”.

9

Jack Ma overtaken as China’s richest man

Jack Ma is no longer China’s richest man after Zhong Shanshan, the founder of the bottled water brand Nongfu Spring, reached the summit of the Bloomberg Billionaires index. As of this week, Zhong’s estimated net worth reached $58.7bn (£46m), surpassing Ma's $56.7bn (£44.4m), according to Bloomberg calculations. Zhong is a reclusive figure and has bee described as a “lone wolf”.

10

Little Mix lash out at X Factor over mental health

The pop band Little Mix say they insisted on aftercare for contestants on their reality television show because they did not receive any support when they were on The X Factor. “We never had anyone checking on us to see how we were doing mentally, it was all just go, go, go,” said band member Jesy Nelson. “I personally don’t feel like there was anyone who cared.”

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