One hundred thousand people dead. A new, more contagious strain. The toll is close to unbearable.
Nearly a year into the pandemic, the situation in Britain is dire. A vicious first wave has given way to an even more deadly second one. On Tuesday, the country passed a milestone of 100,000 deaths from the coronavirus — which amounts to one of the worst fatality rates in the world. A national lockdown, in place since Jan. 4, has only recently begun to lower the eye-wateringly high number of cases, fueled in part by the emergence of a new, apparently more contagious strain of the virus. The toll on the National Health Service is close to unbearable: Nearly 40,000 Covid-19 patients are in hospitals, almost double the peak last year. [ . . .]
Autumn is a brilliant time to see birds arriving and heading off in their thousands. Spectacular movements can be seen all over the UK, but we choose 10 special spots
Spurn Point, East Yorkshire This narrow thread of land – actually classed as a sand tidal island – facing Grimsby is home to a bird observatory that records prodigious quantities of migrants and rarities. An easterly wind will bring thousands of birds passing through.
Given its lighthouses, miniature railway, nuclear power station, curious shacks and shingle, the peninsula is a unique spot even without the vast array of bird and insect life that uses it to launch off over the English Channel. A bird observatory and excellent RSPB reserve keep track of the comings and goings. Continue reading →
It’s not often that feminists threaten legal action over plans to increase women’s representation on public boards, so the Scottish Government has managed something of a feat. ‘For Women Scotland’, a volunteer-funded gender-critical lobby group, isn’t against the principle of the Gender Representation on Public Boards Act. It’s the Scottish Government’s definition of ‘women’ they have a problem with.
The statutory guidance for the Act defines ‘woman’ to include a transwoman without a gender recognition certificate who nonetheless must meet three criteria:
1) enjoys the protected characteristic of gender reassignment under the Equality Act 2010
2) is proposing to undergo or has already undergone a process to change their sex from male to female
3) is living as a woman.
The law ‘would not require the person to dress, look or behave in any particular way’, but ‘it would be expected that there would be evidence that the person was continuously living as a woman’, for example, by employing female pronouns or using their female name on their driving licence, passport and utility bills.