PM announces closure of shops, gatherings of more than two people and social events
The coronavirus is the biggest threat this country has faced for decades – and this country is not alone.
Tuesday: national cabinet to consider lockdowns on coronavirus hotspots. Plus: unemployment soars with queues forming outside Centrelink offices
Good morning, this is James Murray bringing you the main stories and must-reads on Tuesday 24 March.
Trump touted a tool that would push people to test sites. There’s a version of it up and running — in a limited area.
However well-intentioned, a laissez-faire strategy for fighting coronavirus has not worked. Now is the right time for the government to give the public clarity and firm parameters
After the Emergency Powers (Defence) Act was introduced in 1939, imposing a series of stringent and intrusive restrictions on individual freedoms, the wartime government anxiously kept a close eye on compliance. How would people respond? The answer, a Ministry of Information report concluded in 1942, was that: “People are willing to bear any sacrifice if a 100% effort can be reached and the burden fairly shared by all.”
During the critical days to come, in the very different Britain of 2020, the present government must trust in exactly the same kind of popular resilience. The public desperately needs clear, bold leadership, as the trajectory of the coronavirus epidemic in this country continues to track that of stricken Italy. On Saturday 793 people there died from the disease in one day – a global record. This is the right time for Boris Johnson to abandon the register of exhortation and rely on clear instructions that are understood to carry legal force, instituting a lockdown. A laissez-faire approach to fighting a pandemic has not worked.
Vote in border city of Mexicali is unlikely win for farmers and activists over wealthy maker of Corona, Modelo and Pacifico
Voters in a Mexican border city have rejected the construction of a massive, US-owned brewery in an arid region rife with water shortages – an improbable victory for a collective of farmers and activists over a deep-pocketed company backed by state and local officials.
Ikaria wariootia is half the size of a grain of rice and an early example of a bilateral organism
It might not show much of a family resemblance but fossil hunters say a newly discovered creature, that looks like a teardrop-shaped jellybean and is about half the size of a grain of rice, is an early relative of humans and a vast array of other animals.
The team discovered the fossils in rocks in the outback of South Australia that are thought to be at least 555m years old.
Tempers flared on the Senate floor as Republicans accused Democrats of slowing needed assistance and Democrats said the package fell short.
The coronavirus crisis has created uncertainty about whether the gathering, scheduled for mid-July in Milwaukee, can still take place.
Pause follows uncertainty on how jury trials would work amid physical distancing needs
Crown court trials across England and Wales were suspended or collapsed on Monday as judges attempted to find safer ways for juries and lawyers to conduct hearings.
There have been suggestions, including from the Ministry of Justice, that courts would move to handling “urgent” work only during the coronavirus crisis but no one has defined what types of cases that might involve.
Let’s break down the specific friction points to getting this done.