Daily Archives: May 30, 2020

Cummings scandal: Duffield right to resign for breaching lockdown; Labour MPs wrong to back her

Rosie Duffield: she broke lockdown to meet her married lover.

This is an open-and-shut case, isn’t it?

Rosie Duffield seems a nasty character. The Labour MP for Canterbury marched in the ‘lynch’ mob with Ruth Smeeth and others to have Marc Wadsworth ejected from the Labour Party in the kangaroo court that was his hearing before the party’s National Constitutional Committee.

She campaigned for Chris Williamson to get the same treatment from his kangaroo court (NCC) hearing.

Now she has been caught breaking lockdown – possibly more scandalously than Dominic Cummings – in travelling to meet her lover, who happens to be married. So she’s an adulteress. Shocking behaviour, and a terrible example to set – especially at a time when her party leader has been (rightly) criticising Cummings:

In contrast with Cummings, Duffield has done the right thing: she has resigned from her job as a Labour Whip. Here’s the reason it’s right:

The hypocrites in this situation are any Labour MPs who have voiced support for Ms Duffield, saying she shouldn’t quit, after spending more than a week saying Cummings had behaved appallingly and should quit.

That is the scandal in this story and Keir Starmer needs to take action before the tabloids use it to drag him down. And just when Labour was catching up with the Tories in the polls, too.

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POLL: as Boris passes the buck, would YOU send a child to school on June 1?

And now it seems he wants to kill some more: children may be more resistant to Covid-19 than many adults, but they are susceptible to a variant of Kawasaki disease. How many will be laid low by a stupid prime minister’s stupid decision to reopen schools a stupid amount of time too early?

Boris Johnson has refused to take responsibility for deciding what should happen if teachers don’t turn up when schools reopen on Monday.

In that case, he can hardly hope to impose any authority on parents – one would imagine.

Johnson announced on May 10 that he hoped to be able to reopen schools for Reception and Year 6 pupils at the beginning of June.

We all knew this meant schools would be reopening then, even if a second wave of Covid-19 infections had broken over the United Kingdom, causing chaos; he’d said it so he was damn well going to do it.

But little effort has been made to protect teachers or children from possible Covid-19 infection if they go back.

Regulations for teachers tell them that they must continue working if they are exposed to anyone with the virus, meaning they may then go on to infect all the children in their class and, via their colleagues, all the children in the other classes too.

Social distancing plans suggested by some schools have prompted ridicule from the people – not least because they rely on Reception-age children understanding that they need to stay two metres or more away from each other. Fat chance!

Given all of these failures, this poll may seem a forgone conclusion, but with only a day to go, it seems worth asking the question of everybody, whether you have a child to send back to school (and bear in mind that this affects England only) or not:

Downing Street suggested that teachers and other staff who refuse to turn up in schools over safety concerns will be a matter for heads to sort out.

Asked whether they would be deemed to be in breach of their terms of employment, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “Head teachers I’m sure will be having conversations with their own staff in the usual way.

“The Education Secretary has been working very closely with schools and unions for the last 10 weeks. He met with the unions again yesterday.

“Our approach throughout this has been to work closely with schools, heads, and teachers’ representatives to ensure that we deliver a cautious and phased return in a safe way.

“But I’m sure head teachers will have been having discussions with individual teachers.”

Source: Number 10 dismisses teachers’ fears about returning to school as matter for heads – Mirror Online

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Coronavirus test and trace programme hit by further disasters on only its second day

This is going well, isn’t it?

Let me put it another way: it isn’t.

There are serious IT problems which mean contact tracers can’t use the dedicated “test and trace” website.

There isn’t enough work yet, meaning contact tracers are being paid for nothing – although they are being made to wait for it; payments have been unreasonably delayed or were for the wrong amount.

And they don’t even have dedicated team leaders to help them sort out these problems.

NHS workers in the scheme reported being unable to log into the new website, with staff saying they received a message saying a “critical incident” has been reported.

[Also:] “They’ve recruited all these people and there’s not enough work… launching this early was purely to try and dominate the news.

The tracer said she can see there are hundreds of contact tracer shifts available, commenting that, given there are no cases assigned to her, “I could book every day if I was that inclined and get money for sitting painting my nails!”

Another issue that contact tracers have told Sky News about is delayed pay.

One area of progress is that she now has been provided a number to talk to the team leaders but still has not been assigned a specific one for her.

Source: Coronavirus: Test and trace programme ‘hit by more problems’ on day two | UK News | Sky News

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UK electors flood MPs with criticism of Dominic Cummings scandal

Dominic Cummings and Boris Johnson: we expect a higher standard from government than this shifty pair.

Congratulations to the Great British (and Northern Irish?) public for refusing to meekly accept the unacceptable from Boris Johnson and Dominic Cummings.

They – we – expect a higher standard from our elected representatives.

If you haven’t written to your MP already – or if you have and fancy adding a bit more – you can do so by visiting Write To Them.

The furore over Dominic Cummings’ breach of lockdown rules has prompted tens of thousands of people to flood their MPs’ inboxes in what some described as the biggest outpouring since Brexit, a Guardian analysis has found.

As Boris Johnson tried to draw a line under the crisis involving his chief adviser, constituents across the country sent missives to their MPs, with many sharing stories of their own lockdown hardships.

A Guardian analysis covering 117 MPs found they have received a total of 31,738 emails since a joint Guardian and Daily Mirror investigation a week ago divulged that Cummings had travelled to County Durham and taken a trip to a beauty spot with his family after suffering coronavirus symptoms.

If that level of correspondence was reflected across all 650 MPs, it would suggest the revelations may have sparked as many as 180,000 items of correspondence. The numbers were either provided in response to the Guardian’s request for figures, or in statements MPs had released to constituents.

Source: Constituents bombard MPs with tens of thousands of emails over Dominic Cummings | Politics | The Guardian

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