Covid-19 Daily Bulletin
26 November 2020
A series of daily updates for CHO members regarding relevant updates pertaining to Coronavirus from home and abroad.
- The UK has recorded another 696 COVID- related deaths and a further 18,213 cases – the highest daily total for fatalities since 5 May.
- The Health Secretary will today set out in Parliament the tier which each local authority in England will fall under, in line with the measures set out in the COVID-19 Winter Plan published on Monday. The government have published a press release outlining how their decisions have been made, and is due to give a statement to Parliament at 11.30am.
- The Chancellor Rishi Sunak has come under fire for a) aid budget cuts that have broken a manifesto pledge, and b) not discussing the economic issues associated with a no deal Brexit during the Spending Review. He has been defending the Review this morning on the Today Programme. Similarly, trade unions have spoken out over public sector pay freeze.
- The Chancellor’s stated the economy would shrink by 11 per cent this year – the largest drop since the Great Frost in 1709, according to the OBR’s Economic and Fiscal Outlook. Conversely however, the central forecast is marginally better than the central scenario created by the OBR in July, which estimated the contraction standing at 12.4 per cent this year. The OBR also forecasts that the economy would recover to pre-virus levels by the end of the 2022.
- The Sun has reported that a Tier 3 wide lockdown could hit England by Christmas, with SAGE warning “that by the festive season, virus rates all over the country will soar past the levels seen in areas already put into the “very high” category.” Playbook has confirmed that this hasn’t been ruled out, with an official stating the “latest data is incredibly worrying.”
- According to the BBC, the pub industry have sent a letter the Prime Minister, warning the sector is facing huge job losses. Executives at Fuller’s, Carlsberg UK, Greene King, and Heineken UK are among more than 50 signatories of a letter.
- Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, has said that although the Scottish Government would allow families to be together at Christmas, it was safer and advised not to do so.
- Wales’ First Minister, Mark Drakeford has not ruled out further restrictions in Wales in the lead up to Christmas. Drakeford said he is “looking carefully” at similar coronavirus rules to those that will be in place in areas in the upper end of the tier systems of England and Scotland and that they would “most likely” be imposed on a Wales-wide basis, rather than a tier system. Drakeford was vocal this week over concerns of the easing of rules over Christmas.
- New data from the UN Women suggests that the coronavirus pandemic could wipe out 25 years of increasing gender equality.
- Germany and Italy are seeking a deal with the EU to keep ski resorts closed until early January, to stop the spread of the virus. Both States are calling for a European solution.
- The British Beer & Pub Association commented on the Spending Review to say: “The lack of action by the Chancellor to save pubs and jobs by giving them the proper support they need is staggering. It seems pubs have now been cast adrift by the Government. To save businesses and jobs the Chancellor needs to come back to the House this week and set out an enhanced package of support ahead of the new tier system coming into effect. Not only is the Government unfairly rendering pubs unviable or forcing many of them to stay closed this Christmas, it isn’t even giving them the full financial support they need to survive. Whilst the news of a review of business rates reliefs in the New Year is a glimmer of positive news, it is not nearly enough.”
- Responding to new statistics that reveal a spike in domestic violence during lockdown, Nick Thomas-Symonds MP, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary, said: “These appalling statistics show endemic levels of domestic abuse. The Covid crisis didn’t create this scar on our society, but it has made the situation even worse. It is shameful thousands of women have been turned away in their hour of need and the consequences can be catastrophic. The UK Government must do more to provide the sustainable support these vital services need. It is crucial that if someone is able to take the step of reaching out for help, they are not turned away.”