Here’s what you need to know on 9 June. This article was updated at 5pm.
The number of excess deaths in the UK since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak has reached almost 64,000. The latest figures also revealed that there has been a 45% increase in deaths in private homes during the pandemic. Read more here.
Politics: Care minister Helen Whately appeared to blame scientists for the government’s coronavirus care home failures during an interview on Tuesday before awkwardly backtracking. Sky News presenter Kay Burley told her “you can’t stick this on the scientists” to which the MP replied: “yes I can”. Read more here.
Commons leader Jacob Rees-Mogg has said his daughter will have to sit in his office on Friday evening because there’s no one to look after her while he is at work. Rees-Mogg has one daughter back at school but the rest of his family is in their Somerset home. Read more here.
Policy: Non-essential shops can reopen from 15 June, the business secretary has confirmed. Alok Sharma said at the government daily briefing that shops should following social distancing rules and enforcement notices can be issued if they are not. He has confirmed the 2m distancing rule will continue and is under constant review.
Sharma also appeared to push back against reports of pubs and restaurants opening sooner, saying those parts of the hospitality sector will not be back before the beginning of July.
Schools: Plans for all schools in England to reopen before the summer holidays have been scrapped. Education secretary Gavin Williamson has said that the ambition is no longer feasible after the prime minister speaks to his Cabinet. Read more here.
An infant school has closed just a week after it reopened because one of its pupils tested positive for COVID-19. Pennington Infant School in the New Forest, Hampshire, reopened in line with the government’s easing of lockdown last week. Read more here.
Science: An expert from the World Health Organization (WHO) has said people with the coronavirus who show no symptoms “very rarely” spread the infection. Speaking at a media briefing, Dr Maria Van Kerkhove claimed that based on the data available, “it still seems to be rare that an asymptomatic person actually transmits onward to a secondary individual”. Read more here.
The UK’s test and trace system is “not fit for purpose”, scientists critical of the government’s response to the pandemic have said. The group of 12 experts, led by former government chief scientific adviser Sir David King, said the approach is “severely constrained by lack of co-ordination, lack of trust, lack of evidence of utility”. Read more here.
Business: The jobs outlook for the UK is the worst it has been for almost 30 years, according to a recruitment firm. ManpowerGroup found companies in all big sectors of the economy are more likely to cut jobs than to hire people over the next three months. Read more here.
UK businesses have benefited from over £100bn ($126bn) in direct and in-direct government support since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, new data shows. Figures published by the Treasury, HMRC, and the Bank of England show companies have received tens of billions in state-backed loans, grants, and wage support. Read more here.
Sport: Football’s League One and Two will not resume after the pandemic, as the English Football League confirmed clubs across both divisions have voted in favour of ending the 2019/20 season with immediate effect and determining the final standings via a points-per-game formula. The play-offs will still be played. Read more here.
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Rest of the world
Brazil has withdrawn its bid to host the 2023 Fifa Women's World Cup because of the financial impact of COVID-19 on the country. It says it can’t guarantee the funds for the event. Read more here.
A study has indicated coronavirus might have been present and spreading in Wuhan from last August. The study looked at images captured between January 2018 and April 2020 and found a “steep increase” in vehicle counts outside major hospitals starting in August 2019 and peaking in December 2019. The Chinese government said the claim was absurd. Read more here.
The daily death toll from coronavirus could drop to zero by July, scientists have predicted. Researchers at the University of Oxford say COVID-19 deaths could stop being reported by the end of this month. Read more here.
Copenhagen's Tivoli Gardens, the second-oldest theme park in the world, is back open for business. Precautionary measures have been put in place meaning visitors need to book slots on their smartphones to get in and teddy bears are being used to demonstrate social distancing. Read more here.
Breakfast is due back at McDonald’s as the fast food chain continues its reopening in stages. It will begin offering in-store takeaway from next week, beginning with a pilot scheme at service stations. A small group of yet to be confirmed restaurants will offer a breakfast service from 24 June, with a plan to roll out the menu for delivery, drive-thru and takeaway in July. Read more here.