The May elections will be the most important date in the democratic calendar this side of the next general election (yes, already giddily excited). Make sure you’re registered to vote 👇👇👇
Doubtless we’re going to see more postal voting this time and you may well wish to do so for the first time. You can already apply so why not do it early? See this link for more details.…
Remember too especially important to get your application for postal voting in early if you live in Scotland. Deadline there is April 6th. For England and Wales it’s April 20th.
One last thing for young voters: the voting age in Scotland and Wales is 16- so especially important for new voters there to register and use your vote for the first time.

Not so in England where franchise age remains 18.

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More from @lewis_goodall

23 Feb
Latest economic numbers from @ONS

-726,000 fewer people in employment compared to a year ago.
-Employment rate down 1.5% on a year ago and 0.3% on the quarter.
-Unemployment up 1.5% a year ago and up a sharp 0.4% on the quarter.
-18-24s seeing sharpest decreases in employment. Image
Unemployment rate of 5.1% is still historically lowish, remarkable given events (and lower than most other European economies).

That said, huge numbers of people are still on furlough. We can’t know what the true state of the economy/labour market is until that fully unwinds.
And look at this chart. Shows the pain in employment losses being felt overwhelmingly by the 18-24s. No plan for the resumption of their university/education and in the world of work they’re suffering too. Image
Read 5 tweets
22 Feb
BREAK: The United States becomes the first country to record more than half a million Covid deaths.
Bear in mind, as huge as this figure is, it’s a smaller figure on a per capita basis than that of the UK’s.

US: 1 Covid death in 656 people
UK: 1 Covid death in 551 people
Of course, there are different ways of collecting the data in different countries and the US/UK figs are in the same ball park. We can say both countries have had bad pandemics with severe death tolls.
Read 4 tweets
22 Feb
Boris Johnson: "With every day that goes by this programme of vaccination is creating a shield around the entire population, which means we're now travelling on a one way road to freedom."
That could well be true in the long term, reading through the SAGE docs and modelling, it's clear that even with vaccines policy choices could well lead to a rapid increase in infections, hospitalisation and thus presumably extra restrictions.
PM "we'll be led by data, not dates."

As I've said this afternoon, up to a point. Even though we've had a lot of documents today, we don't really know what the exact criteria is, what the data is the govt is looking for.

Read 5 tweets
22 Feb
Lots of talk about “the four tests”- but in reality, they’re quite vague, their calculation could be made in several different ways. And the government hasn’t given detail on exactly what they’re looking for. Given that, wonder how immovable the dates will be, in practice. Image
Lots of briefing about this being a “data not dates” approach but short of major surges or new variant which causes the same, I suspect in practice it’ll be the dates, not the data metrics which have been set out, which we’ll remember and which will (largely) set the framework.
In reality you can argue tests 1 and 2 have already been met and likely will continue to be, it's really about tests 3 and 4 in the future and with test 3 in particular, it's not clear what the thresholds involved might be, what it is govt would be looking for.
Read 12 tweets
22 Feb
So the answer to this was...very little. Govt says students on practical courses who require campus access to graduate can return from Mar 8th. All other students will have to wait for a review, which won't report til end of Easter holidays and only then will set out the options. Image
HE seems to have been treated differently to other sectors, which have (contrary to some of the briefing we saw) been given some ideas of dates. Even nightclubs have a date. The rest of education has a date which is very soon. By contrast students and HE have very little.
Students- do let me know if you hear your university’s plans. DMs open.
Read 4 tweets
22 Feb
Here we go- Boris Johnson on his feet.

Remember in terms of policy changes, this will concern England only.

PM: "PHE has found that 1 dose of Pfizer vaccine reduces hospitalisation & deaths by at least 75% and early data from AZ suggests it provides a good level of protection"
Johnson says that "as modelling by SAGE shows" that lifting of measures will result in hospitalisation/deaths

I reported the modelling some weeks ago
"The level of infection is broadly similar across England"- so all measures changed in England at the same time.

RIP tiers.
Read 10 tweets

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