Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 5 August 2022

The Week’s daily digest of the news agenda, published at 8am

1

UK faces protracted recession

The Bank of England warned the UK will fall into recession as it unveiled the biggest interest rates in 27 years. In a dramatic set of forecasts for the economy, the Bank said inflation will surge above 13%, causing the worst squeeze on living standards for more than 60 years. Meanwhile, the regulator Ofgem has been accused of an “inhumane” move after its latest changes to the price cap meant energy bills could more than double to £4,200 a year by January.

2

Climate breakdown causing extreme weather

Analysis of hundreds of scientific studies “demonstrates beyond any doubt how humanity’s vast carbon emissions are forcing the climate to disastrous new extremes,” said The Guardian. The paper’s investigation found that at least a dozen of the most serious events, from “killer heatwaves to broiling seas,” would have been “all but impossible” without human-caused global heating. “Most worryingly, all this is happening with a rise of just 1C in the planet’s average temperature,” said the paper as “the world is currently on track for a rise of at least 2.5C”.

3

Jones order to pay $4m to Sandy Hook parents

Alex Jones will have to pay the parents of a Sandy Hook shooting victim $4m in compensatory damages, a jury has decided. The plaintiffs, Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin, sought at least $150m in the Texas defamation trial against the Infowars founder. CNN said the award “caps a stunning and dramatic case that showcased for the public the real-world harm inflicted by viral conspiracy theories”. Twenty children and six adults were shot dead at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut in 2012.

4

Police tasered 93-year-old amputee

Two police officers are being investigated on suspicion of manslaughter after a 93-year-old amputee with dementia was tasered and later died. Sussex Police were called to the care home in St Leonards-on-Sea following reports that a wheelchair-bound male resident was threatening staff with a knife. It is understood that the man, Donald Burgess, was in a room away from other staff and residents by the time officers arrived. One of the officers deployed their pepper spray, and used their baton to try and restrain him. The second officer fired his Taser. Another resident described Burgess as “a nice, gentle old man”.

5

Starmer breached code eight times

Keir Starmer has been found to have breached the MPs’ code of conduct by failing to register eight interests on time, including gifts from football teams and the sale of a plot of land. When the standards commissioner launched the inquiry into the Labour leader, Starmer insisted he was “absolutely confident” he had not broken the MPs’ code of conduct. Ruling that he had breached the code, Kathryn Stone noted the “breaches were minor and/or inadvertent, and that there was no deliberate attempt to mislead”.

6

Trump in talks with Justice Department

Donald Trump’s legal team is in direct communication with Justice Department officials over whether the former president would be able to shield conversations he had while he was in power from federal officers who are investigating the Capitol Hill uprising. CNN said that, in recent weeks, investigators have “moved aggressively into Trump’s orbit, subpoenaing top former White House officials, focusing on efforts to overturn the 2020 election and executing searches of lawyers who sought to aid those efforts”.

7

Strangler sentenced under new law

A man who strangled his partner and suffocated her with a pillow has become one of the first people to be sentenced under a new domestic abuse law. Tyler Lowe, 28, was jailed for two years and four months under the Domestic Abuse Act, which made non-fatal strangulation and suffocation a free-standing offence punishable by up to five years in prison. Previously, domestic abusers who strangled victims could only be charged with common assault, with a maximum sentence of six months in jail.

8

Archie’s mum ‘will give mouth-to-mouth’

Archie Battersbee’s mother has vowed to give her son mouth-to-mouth resuscitation if doctors withdraw his life support. The 12-year-old’s Archie’s family continued their battle in the High Court, appealing to judges to allow him to die in a hospice. “If Archie is denied oxygen if and when life support is removed, I will continue to give him oxygen,” said Hollie Dance. A ruling on whether he can be moved to a hospice to die is expected at the High Court this morning. Archie has been in a coma since April and judges in the High Court and the Court of Appeal have previously ruled that it is in his best interests for life support to be removed.

9

Toksvig hits back at Welby

The broadcaster and author Sandi Toksvig has said that the lives of LGBTQ+ people are at stake after the Archbishop of Canterbury affirmed the validity of a 1998 resolution that gay sex is a sin. In a letter published on Twitter, the broadcaster told Lord Welby: “The lives of LGBTQ+ people are at stake here. Jesus doesn’t mention sexuality at all. It clearly wasn’t a big deal for him.” The Telegraph said Welby had made his statement in a bid to “avert attempts by conservative bishops, mostly from Africa, to force a vote on gay marriage at the Lambeth Conference, a decennial gathering of the Anglican Communion”.

10

Westwood complaint made in 2012

An internal review has found that the BBC received allegations of sexual misconduct by Tim Westwood while Tim Davie, the director-general, was head of radio. Davie claimed earlier this year that he had no knowledge of any complaints made against the DJ but a review by the BBC’s corporate investigations team found an allegation was made in October 2012 that Westwood had made inappropriate sexual remarks to a 15-year-old girl. The BBC Board said that “there may have been occasions in the past when the BBC should have further explored issues that were being raised”.

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