Another week, another barrage of news. From the White House’s own coronavirus crisis to the Home Office’s “inhumane” ideas to stem migration, good news can sometimes feel very hard to come by, and it’s understandable to want to detach from the headlines sometimes.
But knowledge is power. That’s why, each week, we’ll be rounding up the news items you need to know about. They’re not always the stories that make the front page. Rather, these are the ones we think women who rise need to be aware of.
Trump flown to military hospital for coronavirus treatment
Donald Trump has released a video statement insisting he is “doing well” but facing a critical few days in his battle against coronavirus.
The recording, made at the Walter Reed military hospital, came after doctors and White House staff appeared to give mixed messages about the president’s condition. He’d been flown to hospital on Friday.
Trump’s diagnosis has forced him to cancel all public appearances just one month out from polling day, leading to rampant speculation about the impact on the election.
His admission for treatment has also called into question the GOP’s ability to push through the confirmation of Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett before November 3.
The list of people to have tested positive around Mr Trump is continuing to grow in the wake of his diagnosis.
His close aide Hope Hicks, campaign manager Bill Stepien, former White House counsellor Kellyanne Conway and Senators Mike Lee and Thom Tillis have also tested positive. Both Democratic nominee Joe Biden and his wife have tested negative for the virus.
Report warns Universal Credit cut would hit most vulnerable families
One in three working families in the so-called ‘red wall’ seats that swung to the Tories in the last election will be left £1,000 a year worse off under plans to cut benefits.
A new report by the Resolution Foundation thinktank has warned the planned cutback would disproportionately impact on areas the government has pledged to ‘level up’.
“You are 50% more likely to lose out in the red wall regions [of the north, midlands, Wales and Northern Ireland] than in the south-east,” the report warns.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak boosted basic level Universal Credit and Tax Credit payments by a total of £20 per week in spring, as a temporary measure to help families through the COVID crisis.
But campaigners say the plan to cut payments back to pre-coronavirus levels in April 2021 would leave six million families worse off in a time of rising unemployment.
SNP MP investigated by police after travelling with coronavirus
MP Margaret Ferrier is under police investigation, after she admitted travelling from Westminster to her home in Scotland by train after testing positive for coronavirus.
The SNP member for Rutherglen and Hamilton West has apologised for travelling to London to speak in the House of Commons, despite being symptomatic. She later tested positive, but travelled home regardless.
She was suspended from the party on Thursday, but has so far refused to step down.
Downing Street, which backed Dominic Cummings after he broke coronavirus protocols, has refused to call for her resignation, saying it is a matter for Ferrier and her party.
But furious party leader Nicola Sturgeon insisted resigning is “the right thing” for Ferrier to do, describing her breach of regulations as “a monumental, almost incomprehensible, error of judgment”.
Convicted rapist Harvey Weinstein facing six new sexual assault charges
Disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein is facing six new sexual assault charges from behind bars, prosecutors announced on Friday.
The convicted rapist, who is currently serving a 23-year prison sentence for rape after a high-profile trial in New York, is now facing prosecution in California.
Three additional forcible rape felonies and three forcible oral copulation charges have been added to a rape and sexual assault charge sheet, stemming from alleged attacks in Beverly Hills between 2004 and 2010.
He was first charged under California law in January, and again in April, bringing the total number of crimes he now stands accused of in the state to 11.
If convicted on all counts, he could face an additional 140 years to life in a California prison.
‘Inhuman’ immigration proposals considered by Home Office, says leak
The UK Government considered erecting barriers in the channel between France and Britain to stem the flow of migrants into the country, according to documents leaked this week.
Also under consideration were the use of water cannon to turn back migrant vessels, and plans to create an offshore immigration facility 4,000 miles from the UK on Ascension Island.
Home Secretary Priti Patel is said to have asked officials to look at asylum policies which had been successful in other countries – but the government has since refused to comment on the methods contained in leaked documents.
Maritime UK told the BBC it was consulted over the possible use of temporary “marine fencing” – but that its “clear view” was that building a wall in the Channel was “not legally possible”.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has blasted the ideas as “inhuman” and “ridiculous”.
World leaders pledged to take ‘meaningful action’ on biodiversity
More than 70 world leaders and heads of state this week signed the Leaders’ Pledge for Nature, designed to prevent the destruction of earth’s biodiversity.
The ten-point plan, backed by Emmanuel Macron, Angela Merkel, Justin Trudeau, Jacinda Ardern and Boris Johnson among others, calls for a crackdown on pollution and the dumping of plastic waste.
It also urges nations across the globe to make sustainable economic decisions, transition to sustainable food production and adopt circular business and development strategies.
The move came as leaders met to negotiate a UN Biodiversity Agreement.
But key figures including Xi Jingping, Jair Bolsonaro, Scott Morrison and Vladimir Putin refused to sign, leading climate activist Greta Thunberg to dismiss “the laughable, cynical empty promises and ‘pledges’ still taking place”.
Graduate scheme looked to boost UK’s mental healthcare sector
A fast-track programme to train mental health social workers has expanded its intake of graduates in the face of unprecedented demand.
The Think Ahead initiative, which recruits high-flying graduates and offers them paid, on-the-job training within mental health and NHS Trust teams, has upped the number of positions it offers from 100 to 160.
Around 30 candidates, many of whom have experienced mental health difficulties themselves or within their families, were previously competing for each space on the course.
Think Ahead says 81 per cent of its recruits remain in social work employment six months after graduation, compared to 74 per cent who trained on university social work courses.