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Coronavirus

Baby Bank Helps Mothers Impacted By Coronavirus

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A Baby Bank has been set up in Birmingham to help mothers impacted by Coronavirus.

The Baby Bank was set up by Birmingham City Councillor Nicky Brennan and Kirsten Kurt Eli in a bid to help families in poverty finding life more difficult following the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Volunteers help deliver essential baby items such as nappies, baby food and milk to familes with low incomes or that are in crisis.

Councillor Brenann said that they have helped around 350 families to date, a typical day would be packing orders for volunteers to collect and drive to clients.

Some days, there can be 30-40 deliveries in a single day.

Pregnant women have been placed in a vulnerable category, the NHS says they should be ‘particularly stringent in following social distancing measures’.

Last week, Brum Baby Banked helped a woman who was heavily pregnant and that had recently fled an abusive relationship.

Councillor Brenann says that she “didn’t have anything for her baby as she had to leave things behind.” The volunteers provided her with a ‘newborn essentials pack’.

CHILD POVERTY

Turn2us, a charity that helps people in finacinal hardship called the need for Baby Banks a ‘damning indictment’.

Sara Willcocks, Head of Communications at Turn2us, said;

“There are already 8.3 million adults and 4.6 million children living in poverty in the UK. The need for Baby Banks, and the fact that charity has become the new normal, is another damning indictment on the inequalities that exist within our society.”

In 2016, an independent review commissioned by Birmingham City Council found that 37% of all children in Birmingham live in poverty.

Councillor Brennan said; “Coronavirus is definitely exposing child poverty in the city and also the lack of support networks some families have”

According to research carried out by Turn2Us, 10.5 million children are facing financial crisis due to lost income.

It says an increase in people strugglling will ‘exacerbate the problems that already exist’.

Sara Willcocks said; “We urge the government to work with charities within the sector to produce a complete poverty reduction strategy, so that babies born today can thrive tomorrow.”

If you need help, you can contact BrumBabyBank via email: brumbabybank@gmail.com

Coronavirus

Eight in 10 Britons Ignore COVID-19 Self-Isolation Rules, Survey Finds

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A new survey indicates more than 80% of people living in Britain with COVID-19 symptoms or who have had contact with someone who has tested positive are ignoring self-isolation guidelines.
 
The survey, released Friday and conducted by Kings College London and the National Health Service (NHS), found that only 18.2% of people who reported having symptoms of COVID-19 in the previous seven days have stayed isolated since their symptoms developed, and only 11.9% requested a COVID-19 test.
 
The research also shows fewer than half those surveyed were able to identify the symptoms of COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new coronavirus.
 
The research also found that only 10.9% of people told to self-isolate after close contact with a COVID-19 case had done so for 14 days as required.
 
In a statement, the survey’s senior author, Kings College researcher Dr. James Rubin, said the research indicated that while the public seems to have good intentions to adhere to the test, trace and isolate guidelines, financial constraints are the most common reason given for non-compliance, among other factors.
 
Britain this week introduced fines of up to $12,780 for breaking self-isolation rules, and it is offering nearly $640 in support payments to low-paid workers who lose income from quarantining.
 
The study shows other reasons for non-compliance ranged from not knowing government guidance to being unable to identify the symptoms.
 
Kings College says the data was collected through surveys conducted among 30,000 people living in Britain between March and August of this year.

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Coronavirus

UK’s Coronavirus Vaccine Is Safe And Induces An Immune Reaction

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The UK’s Coronavirus Vaccine is safe and induces an immune reaction, according to preliminary results.

Results published today in the journal Lancet show that the early stage Oxford University trial has found that the vaccine is safe, causes few side effects, and induces strong immune responses in both parts of the immune system.

The trial of 1,077 healthy adults found that the vaccine induced strong antibody and T cell immune responses up to day 56 of the ongoing trial. 

Explaining how the vaccine works, study lead author Professor Andrew Pollard, University of Oxford, UK, said;

“The new vaccine is a chimpanzee adenovirus viral vector (ChAdOx1) vaccine that expresses the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. It uses a common cold virus (adenovirus) that infects chimpanzees, which has been weakened so that it can’t cause any disease in humans, and is genetically modified to code for the spike protein of the human SARS-CoV-2 virus.

This means that when the adenovirus enters vaccinated people’s cells it also delivers the spike protein genetic code. This causes these people’s cells to produce the spike protein, and helps teach the immune system to recognise the SARS-CoV-2 virus.” 

The current results focus on the immune response measured in a laboratory, and scientists say further testing is needed to confirm whether the vaccine effectively protects against infection.

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Another 1.5 Million File For Unemployment As States Continue To Reopen Economies, Totaling 44 Million People Unemployed

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(NPR) — The pain in the job market continues as an additional 1.5 million sought jobless benefits for the first time last week, down 355,000 from the prior week. Continued claims fell by 339,000 to 20.9 million, a sign that more people are returning to work as the economy reopens after pandemic lockdowns.

More than 44 million first-time claims have been filed in the past 12 weeks.

The Federal Reserve is projecting that the unemployment rate will be more than 9% by year end, falling to 6.5% by the end of 2021.

That’s down from last month’s lower-than-expected 13.3% rate but up sharply from a nearly 50-year low of 3.5% earlier this year before the coronavirus crisis shut down much of the economy. Employers added 2.5 million jobs in May, but they slashed 20.7 million just a month earlier.

“The May employment report, of course, was a welcome surprise,” Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said Wednesday. “We hope we get many more like it. But I think we have to be honest. It’s a long road.”

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