Ten Things You Need to Know Today: 17 October 2022

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

1. Truss awaits market verdict

Liz Truss’s future as PM is hanging in the balance as she waits to see how financial markets will react to her latest U-turn on tax cuts and her appointment of Jeremy Hunt as chancellor. The pound moved higher in early Asia trade this morning, gaining around 0.5% to trade above $1.12. While the BBC also reported that Hunt will bring forward “measures from the Medium-Term Fiscal Plan”, in a statement in the House of Commons today, in an attempt to further calm the markets. But Tory MPs are threatening to oust the PM and even her allies are warning she has just days to turn around her premiership. Tories are holding “secret talks on crowning a new leader”, said The Times.

Can Liz Truss survive after sacking Kwasi Kwarteng?

2. Met officers escape justice

Metropolitan police officers suspected of criminal offences including sexual assault and domestic abuse have been allowed to escape justice, a review has found. The report by Louise Casey found that in one example, an officer faced 11 claims including sexual assault, harassment and domestic abuse, but remains in the force. “You have to come to the conclusion there must be hundreds of people that shouldn’t be here, who should be thrown out,” said the new Metropolitan police commissioner, Mark Rowley.

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Mark Rowley: the new Met chief tasked with leading force through ‘worst crises’ yet

3. Protester ‘dragged into’ embassy

A Hong Kong pro-democracy protester was forced into the Chinese consulate in Manchester and attacked. A BBC journalist filmed men coming out of the consulate and forcing a man inside the compound, before he escaped with the help of police and other activists. The protester told the BBC “they dragged me inside, they beat me up”. Greater Manchester Police told the Manchester Evening News that a police patrol remains in place in the area following the incident in order to reassure the local community.

Hong Kong: what’s happened in the 25 years since Britain’s handover to China?

4. NHS avoiding ‘scrutiny’

NHS hospitals have claimed that babies born alive were stillborn, reported The Telegraph. According to an investigation by the paper, six children who died before they left hospital were wrongly described as stillborn. Several of the children lived for minutes and one lived for five days, according to The Telegraph. In one example, an obstetrician told a coroner in Stockport that he had been encouraged by an NHS manager to say a baby he had delivered had been stillborn, in order to be “loyal” to the trust. Coroners are not able to carry out inquests into stillbirths.

5. UK faces worse recession but lower rates

The UK is likely to suffer a worse recession than previously expected next year, but interest rates and inflation will be lower than forecast, according to Goldman Sachs. In its revised analysis, the US investment bank downgraded its outlook for Britain, forecasting the UK economy would shrink by 1% next year, down from its previous estimate for a 0.4% contraction. Its analysts believe interest rates will now peak at 4.75%, slighter lower than the 5% previously factored in.

Are we heading for a second global recession?

6. Trump criticises US Jews

Donald Trump has attacked American Jews for what he described as their insufficient praise of his policies towards Israel. Writing on his social media platform Truth Social, he said “no President has done more for Israel than I have” and expressed his surprise that “our wonderful Evangelicals are far more appreciative of this than the people of the Jewish faith, especially those living in the US”. The American Defamation League said: “We don’t need the former president, who curries favour with extremists and antisemites, to lecture us about the US-Israel relationship.”

What is Donald Trump doing now?

7. Covid drug ‘needed for vulnerable’

Time is running out for hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people who are facing another winter shielding from Covid, said campaigners. Backed by charities such as Kidney Care UK and the MS Society as well as more than 120 medical experts, the campaigners are calling on ministers to buy a drug called Evusheld to provide some protection against the virus. However, the government said it is not clear how long that protection will last when up against the Omicron variant.

Is this the end of Covid?

8. Tip deductions ‘rob workers of £200m’

Tip deductions are costing UK workers £200m a year, according to figures from the Labour Party. Pledging to “stamp out” deductions, Angela Rayner, Labour’s deputy leader, will reveal plans this week to ensure employers allocate all tips, gratuities and service charge payments to workers in full, without any deductions beyond those from statutory taxes. The Conservatives promised to address the tips issue in their 2019 manifesto and also in an employment bill that failed to make the last two Queen’s speeches.

9. Cancer vaccine ‘by 2030’

Vaccines for cancer could be widely available before 2030, said the husband and wife team behind one of the most successful Covid jabs. Professor Ugur Sahin and Professor Ozlem Tureci said knowledge gained during the coronavirus pandemic will accelerate cancer treatments based on mRNA technology. In an interview with the BBC, Tureci said: “We feel that a cure for cancer or to changing cancer patients’ lives is in our grasp.”

The UK’s ‘emergency’ cancer battle

10. Britain to bask in ‘Indian summer’

Britain will enjoy highs of up to 21C (70F) this week during an “Indian summer” ahead of Halloween, said The Telegraph. The Met Office said southerly winds will “draw up” warm air from Africa and bring a mild spell across the UK, particularly in the South East. The weather forecaster said the period from January to September was the hottest first nine months of the year since its records began in 1884, and its data for central England show October so far is 1.5C above average for the month.

How the UK’s droughts compare with the rest of the world

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