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Headlines UK London

Fasten seat belts!

Regina Kashapova

2020 was a big test for the travel industry. Closing borders, stopping flights, introducing quarantines, restrictions on the work of museums, hotels and restaurants – all this led to the fact that people began to travel less often. Does this mean that the tourism business will cease to exist? Perhaps it is too early to talk about the death of the industry, but we will definitely travel in a different way.

Catastrophic consequences

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) estimates that the size of the tourism industry before the pandemic was comparable to that of the food, automotive, and even oil sectors. It was expected that by 2023 one tenth of the world’s working population would be directly or indirectly employed in organizing travel. At the same time, 75% of the profits for airlines were brought by business tourism, and 89% of all expenses on business travel – that is, about $ 980 billion – were in Western Europe, North America and the Asia-Pacific region. The annual revenue of the tourism industry in 2019 was a record $ 1.4 trillion (10.3% of global GDP).

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In 2020, the industry lost $ 710 billion, according to analysts at the International Business Travel Association (GBTA). In the Asia-Pacific region alone, travel declined 82% in ten months. In Europe and North America, the decline was 68% – due to the short-term resumption of flights in the summer, these regions managed to slightly compensate for the losses. The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has estimated that of the 330 million people employed in this area, at least 143 million have lost their jobs.If the situation with coronavirus does not change for the better in the first half of 2021, then another 32 will be at risk of cuts. million people, writes the Financial Times.

According to UNWTO forecasts, tourism may partially recover by the second half of 2021, but the return to the pre-pandemic level will take from 2.5 to 4 years, depending on the situation with the vaccination of the population and the opening of borders between states. So, Denmark is the leader among the countries of the European Union in terms of vaccination rate: 2% of the population is already vaccinated there against COVID-19. And Thailand is still ready to receive tourists, despite the next outbreak of the disease (all arrivals must pass a coronavirus test and self-isolate for two weeks). The UK, by contrast, closed its borders to prevent the spread of its strain of coronavirus and other rapidly spreading varieties of COVID-19 to enter the country.

“You cannot travel yet, even if you really want to.Said Martin Ferguson, vice president of public affairs for American Express Global Business Travel. – The question is how many people will not be able to travel the world after this is over. “

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Fasten your seat belts and put on your masks!

Mass vaccination is a process that requires concentration and attention, doctors say. It is unlikely that most of the world’s population will receive the drug by the end of 2021. However, the aviation industry does not want to wait any longer. In 2020, European airlines, airports and air traffic control services alone lost more than € 56 billion and carried 1.7 billion less passengers than a year earlier. According to the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol), the number of flights between European countries decreased by 54%, and between European countries and other countries by 59%.

Obviously, the aviation industry will not survive another such shock. However, the rapid resumption of flights means that a person infected with coronavirus may be on the same plane with you. “Isn’t it dangerous?” – you ask. No more dangerous than going to the grocery store, scientists at Harvard University say. In October 2020, they conducted a study and found that air travel is not that risky. Analysis of air flows in the cabins of airliners showed that specialized on-board ventilation systems filter out 99% of airborne viruses. The latter are transmitted through droplets of liquid resulting from coughing and sneezing, but the direction of the air flow inside the aircraft cabin minimizes the risk of infection. Since the study was funded by a number of airlines, many questioned the conclusions of Harvard experts, but they insisted on the impartiality of their judgments, writes CNN.

“Minimizes does not mean completely removes”, – added the scientists. Therefore, it is important that passengers wear masks throughout the flight and do not remove them unnecessarily. For example, meals during short flights are proposed to be reduced or completely removed, since they can also cause the spread of infection.

Dublin’s Health Service Executive (HSE) found that in the summer of 2020, one passenger on a seven-hour flight was able to infect thirteen people. And this despite the fact that the row of seats remained empty, and all passengers, in their own words, were wearing masks. The case was discovered thanks to a contact tracing system: subsequent testing of passengers showed that everyone had the same coronavirus strain.

It seems that to characterize possible flights after the pandemic, the Russian proverb “Trust in God, but don’t make a mistake yourself” is suitable …

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Three new trends in post-pandemic tourism

Masks are just a small part of what awaits us, GBTA analysts say. There are three new trends in the tourism industry that will only intensify after the pandemic. Here they are:

1. Development of domestic tourism (staycation)

The coronavirus pandemic has made people pay attention to interesting locations in the country where they live. In addition, many countries have begun to purposefully promote domestic tourism – this has reduced the level of stress amid growing restrictions and stimulated the economy.

Russia has become the third state among the G-20 countries in terms of the growth rate of domestic tourism, the head of the Federal Agency for Tourism Zarina Doguzova told RIA Novosti. The Russians have explored the regions from Karelia to Altai, and the government’s tourist cashback program helped them a lot. Holders of the Mir card received up to 15 thousand rubles back when booking a Russian tour. “If we look at the turnover of the entire tourism industry, including domestic and inbound tourism and quite a bit outbound tourism in terms of the profit of agents and operators, then in 2019 it amounted to 3.7 trillion rubles. This year, this amount will be reduced by 60%, to 1.6 trillion rubles. The fall could have been great. But due to domestic tourism and measures to stimulate demand, it was possible not to zero the total turnover “, – said Doguzova.

In the UK, domestic tourism has started to rise quite spontaneously, according to the BBC. Despite tough coronavirus restrictions, Britons over 50 have begun booking bus tours to other cities. They are confident that they will soon receive the coronavirus vaccine and will be able to arrange a little rest for themselves.

However, China has achieved the greatest success in developing domestic tourism. It is the only country in the world where domestic flights have increased since the pandemic to 98% of the 2019 level.

2. Growth in demand for apartments instead of hotels

A distinctive feature of the coronavirus pandemic has become the observance of social distance. People avoid public places, prefer to travel by private rather than public transport, and tend to rent separate apartments rather than hotel rooms. Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky says the trend is already dictating its own rules and will only grow as restrictions ease.

A study by Cushman & Wakefield on new trends in the hospitality industry showed that in May 2020, the occupancy rate of apart-hotels (modern-format hotels with a kitchen block and a private bathroom) was 30%, while that of regular hotels was only 5-7%.

In addition, apartments and apartments can be booked for a long period of time, which has already been used by tourists who find themselves in another country during the peak of the pandemic and the suspension of flights. Even after the resumption of flights, this type of accommodation will not lose popularity: the transition to remote work will allow tourists to live comfortably in the apartment of their choice, analysts at The Washington Post say.

3. Decrease in the number of direct flights

According to the RadarBox service, air traffic decreased five times in 2020. This has been a blow to low-cost airlines with low-cost direct flights, and some are not ready to restore flights in full, even after the coronavirus restrictions have been completely lifted. The railway service also suffered – for example, Eurostar had to postpone the launch of a direct train from Amsterdam to London.

This means that in the future, passengers will have to get used to careful travel planning and take into account that several connecting flights will need to reach certain countries. For seasoned travelers, this will not be a problem, but beginners can easily give up and refuse even the desired trip.

We can say that people’s desire to travel has not faded away. Only the requirements for the quality of rest have changed, and additional difficulties have appeared in its organization. The decisive word remains with the market: how much will it be able to adapt to new requirements and take into account the nuances that have emerged during the pandemic?

Categories
Headline USA Politics

Biden will ask for 100 days of mask use against COVID-19, stop evictions and pause student debt | The State

President-elect Joe Biden considers wearing a mask against the coronavirus pandemic a priority.

Photo:
Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

The president-elect Joe biden will fulfill its advance plan of asking the public to “do their part” and “be patriots” with the mandatory use of masks in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, but will also seek to help families with the arrest of evictions at least until March 31 how to suspend student debts.

Thus, for 100 days, Americans should cover their nose and mouth in public spaces, he says. one of the 17 executive orders which the Democrat will sign this Wednesday on the first day of his mandate. The measure will be mandatory in federal spaces.

The program “10-day masking challenge” takes up the guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the effectiveness of covering your face in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, in order to reduce infections.

“It requires the use of masks and physical distancing in all federal buildings, in all federal properties and for employees and contractors,” indicates the advancement of the policy, which will force the implementation of other measures recommended by the Department of Health and Human Services and CDC.

Biden also orders the reintegration of the US into the World Health Organization (who), to promote joint efforts led by the Dr. Anthony Fauci.

In another order, he calls for the creation of the position of Response Coordinator against COVID-19, who will report directly to the president.

“He will be responsible for coordinating all elements of the COVID-19 response across the government, including
manage efforts to produce, supply and distribute personal protective equipment, vaccines and tests, “he says.

Support for housing and students

Two of the executive orders seek to reduce the economic impact that the pandemic has caused on families and threatens thousands of eviction.

The extension of the moratorium on eviction and foreclosure would be extended until at least March 31, on the grounds that one in five tenants and one in 10 homeowners with a mortgage are behind in payments.

“Call on Congress to Provide Much-Needed Rent Relief and Extend It Even More”, indicates the plan.

Mortgages guaranteed by the federal government will be reviewed by the Veterans Affairs, Agriculture, and Housing and Urban Development departments.

Over the student loans it seeks to extend the federal moratorium.

“Borrowers of all ages are often faced with a difficult compromise between making payments … investing in their long-term financial future or paying their bills,” acknowledges the justification. “The pandemic only increased financial hardship for the millions of Americans who have student debt.”

It will also ask the Department of Education to immediately consider extending the pause in interest and principal payments until at least September 30, 2021.

Other executive orders are focused on immigration to restore DACA, stop wall construction, and reorient immigration processes.

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Categories
Headlines UK London

Nine Met Police officers are hit with £200 Covid fines

Nine Met Police officers are hit with £200 Covid fines after being spotted tucking into breakfast INSIDE London café during lockdown… while force was cracking down harder on public

  • Scotland Yard fines and slams officers for failing to lead by example in lockdown 
  • Blow for Met as Commissioner Dick urges public to call police on neighbours 
  • A passer-by caught squad cars outside Chef House Kitchen in south east London
  • Brian Jennings, 44, regularly walks past the cafe, near the Greenwich Patrol Base
  • IT manager said he was annoyed after reading about the tough police crackdown

Nine hypocritical Metropolitan Police officers have been fined £200 each after they were spotted by the public ‘flouting’ coronavirus curbs while tucking into breakfast together inside a London café during lockdown, it was revealed today.

A passer-by spotted several squad cars outside The Chef House Kitchen in Woolwich and took a photograph of the policemen and women tucking into their breakfasts despite a nationwide ban on indoor dining.

The images from Greenwich, which has one of the highest infection rates in the country, caused outrage as Britain sits in the middle of a third national lockdown where up to 1,600 people are dying every day. 

There was also anger because Scotland Yard is in the midst of a crisis  because about 1,700 Metropolitan Police staff are off sick or self-isolating.

Following an investigation into the incident on January 9, it was determined that the officers involved should be issued with fixed penalty notices to the value of £200 each.

Chief Superintendent Rob Atkin, South East BCU Commander, said: ‘Police officers are tasked with enforcing the legislation that has been introduced to stop the spread of the virus and the public rightly expect that they will set an example through their own actions.

‘It is disappointing that on this occasion, these officers have fallen short of that expectation. It is right that they will pay a financial penalty and that they will be asked to reflect on their choices.’ 

A passer-by caught several squad cars outside The Chef House Kitchen while officers sat inside at 9am, despite a ban on gatherings and table service. Nine officers have been  fined £200 each

Brian Jennings, 44, regularly walks past the cafe, near the Greenwich Patrol Base in south east London for exercise and saw them sitting inside eating

Brian Jennings, 44, regularly walks past the cafe, near the Greenwich Patrol Base in south east London for exercise and saw them sitting inside eating

Snitch on your neighbour, Met Police chief says

Britain’s most senior police officer has urged the public to report ‘persistent’ Covid rule flouters to police. 

Met Police chief Dame Cressida Dick revealed police in London are receiving ‘hundreds of calls a day’ from concerned people reporting their neighbours for flouting lockdown restrictions. 

She said there is a ‘small minority’ of people failing to comply with the national lockdown with people still holding house parties, and keeping restaurants, pubs and cafes open despite the huge number of daily Covid cases and deaths. 

It comes as Dame Cressida raised concerns that her frontline colleagues were not amongst the first to be vaccinated against Covid amid a rise in spitting attacks on officers. 

Official statistics released yesterday show a further 37,535 cases of coronavirus were recorded across Britain.

Speaking on an LBC radio phone-in, Dame Cressida said: ‘If you do have concerns that somebody is persistently not complying with the restrictions, with the regulations, then, yeah, you should talk to us.

‘If you feel comfortable to do so, then talk to us.’ 

The group were spotted 11 days ago as their boss Cressida Dick vowed to crack down harder on lockdown flouters. The Met Commissioner said it was inconceivable that people didn’t the rules by now.

She has also urged the public to call the police on neighbours if the flout the rules. 

But her own officers were shamed by Brian Jennings, 44, regularly walks past the cafe, near the Greenwich Patrol Base in south east London for exercise and saw them sitting inside eating.

The IT manager from Blackheath said he was outraged by the site after reading of members of the public who fined for going for a walk with a coffee. 

He said: ‘There’s a large police depot on the Thames riverside near me. I walk past it a few times a week because it’s a nice quiet place to take exercise.

‘On the neighbouring industrial estate there’s a cafe. We noticed in the first lockdown and then we noticed it again today that, regularly, first thing in the morning there will be half a dozen squad cars outside and every table full of police officers having breakfast in there.

‘It’s not a one off it’s been going on for a few months. You read about people getting fined in the papers and it seems hypocritical as there [looks like there is little] social distancing in the cafe.

‘It’s a public cafe and it’s open and its serving table service in lockdown – it is not good.

‘It’s about as bad as it gets in the UK with a virus and it’s insensitive and stupid. I think it’s really bad.’

He added: ‘I find the regular, continued flouting of social distancing, and lockdown regulations by the police hypocritical and foolish at this time when the infection rates in Greenwich Borough are among the highest in the UK.’

The Chef House Kitchen refused to comment on the case. 

It comes after police have cracked down harder on rule breaking. Pictured: Kensington Palace Gardens in London

It comes after police have cracked down harder on rule breaking. Pictured: Kensington Palace Gardens in London

The Met Police said at the time: ‘We are aware of the images. A local investigation is underway to identify the officers and establish the full circumstances.

‘Our officers are responsible for enforcing Covid related legislation and it is important that any allegations of breaches by our own staff are properly investigated and the appropriate action taken.’ 

Categories
Coronavirus COVID-19 Delhi The Buzz

Rajasthan Congress MLA Gajendra Singh Shaktawat dies at 48


Jaipur, January 20

Rajasthan Congress MLA Gajendra Singh Shaktawat, who was suffering from liver infection, died at a private hospital in Delhi on Wednesday morning. He was 48.

The MLA had also tested positive for coronavirus, family sources said.

Shaktawat represented Vallabhnagar constituency of Udaipur.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, PCC president Govind Singh Dotasra, former deputy CM Sachin Pilot and other leaders expressed grief over the demise.

“Deep condolences on untimely demise of Congress MLA Shri Gajendra Shaktawat,” Gehlot tweeted, saying he was sick for a long time. The Chief Minister said he was in touch with the legislator’s family as well as Dr Shiv Sareen to enquire about his health.

“I am deeply saddened by the devastating news of the passing away of my colleague & MLA Shri Gajendra Singh Shaktawat ji. He was a humble and a kind soul, always dedicated towards the development of his constituency. My heartfelt condolences to his family,” Pilot said on Twitter.  

Shaktawat, a two-time MLA, was among the Congress legislators, led by Pilot, who had revolted against the leadership of the Chief Ninister in July last year.

He is survived by wife, son and two daughters. 

Shaktawat is the third Congress and fourth sitting MLA in Rajasthan to have died in the recent past.

Congress MLAs Master Bhanwar Lal Meghwal (Sujangarh in Churu), Kailash Trivedi (Sahara in Bhilwara) and BJP MLA Kiran Maheshwari (Rajsamand) are the others who died recently. 

Meghwal, the social justice and empowerment minister, had suffered brain haemorrhage and died in November last year. Kailash Trivedi and Kiran Maheshwari died due to coronavirus infection. While Trivedi died in October, Maheshwari passed away in November last.

With this, the tally in the House of 200 has come down to 196 in the Congress-ruled state.

Bypolls will now be conducted to four Assembly constituencies in the state. PTI





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Coronavirus COVID-19 The Buzz

In farewell address, Trump wishes luck to next administration without mentioning Biden


Washington, January 20

US President Donald Trump, in a farewell address released on Tuesday, touted his legacy and wished luck to the new administration of President-elect Joe Biden but without acknowledging his successor by name.

Trump has refused to offer a full concession to Democrat Biden, who won the November 3 election with 306 Electoral College votes to Trump’s 232. Biden will be inaugurated at 12 pm on Thursday and Trump is not meeting with Biden beforehand or attending the swearing in as is customary in the handover of power to the White House. Trump instead plans to fly to Florida.

“This week, we inaugurate a new administration and pray for its success in keeping America safe and prosperous,” the Republican president said in recorded remarks. “We extend our best wishes, and we also want them to have luck – a very important word.”

Trump campaigned on a pledge to “Make America Great Again” but leaves office with more than 400,000 people dead of the novel coronavirus – the most in the world – whose risk he played down, an economy struggling from the pandemic, and relationships strained with key U.S. allies.

“The greatest danger we face is a loss of confidence in ourselves, a loss of confidence in our national greatness,” Trump said.

For months Trump said without evidence that the election was rigged against him and applied pressure on state officials to overturn the results. At a rally near the White House on Jan. 6 he encouraged followers to march on Congress while lawmakers were certifying Biden’s win.

Trump has been holed up at the White House for the final weeks of his term, reeling after the riot by his supporters at the Capitol that led to five deaths, including a Capitol Police officer.

The stampede, which followed a rally in which Trump repeated false allegations of election fraud and urged his supporters to fight, has overshadowed any efforts to emphasize the president’s legacy in his final days in office.

The House of Representatives impeached Trump on a charge of incitement, making him the first president in U.S. history to be impeached twice. He will have to face the charges after leaving office.

In Tuesday’s farewell, without specifically mentioning Twitter’s decision to suspend his @realDonaldTrump account, Trump made reference to his complaint that free speech had been muzzled by the company. Twitter said it suspended the account because of the risk of the incitement of further violence.

“Shutting down free and open debate violates our core values and most enduring traditions,” Trump said. “America is not a timid nation of tame souls who need to be sheltered and protected from those with whom we disagree.” In the recorded remarks Trump sought to highlight aspects of his presidency in which he took pride.

“We did what we came here to do, and so much more,” he said.

“I took on the tough battles, the hardest fights, the most difficult choices – because that’s what you elected me to do.” Trump noted Middle East peace deals his administration brokered and lauded his foreign policy agenda.

“We revitalized our alliances and rallied the nations of the world to stand up to China like never before,” he said. “I am especially proud to be the first president in decades who has started no new wars.”

Trump, who leaves amid deep divisions in the country, acknowledged the Capitol riots, which in the immediate aftermath of the violence he was slow to condemn.

“All Americans were horrified by the assault on our Capitol.

Political violence is an attack on everything we cherish as Americans. It can never be tolerated,” he said.

And the president, who former advisers predict has lost much of a political future after the riots, suggested his movement would go on.

“Now, as I prepare to hand power over to a new administration at noon on Wednesday, I want you to know that the movement we started is only just beginning,” Trump said.

“I go from this majestic place with a loyal and joyful heart and optimistic spirit, and a supreme confidence that for our country and for our children, the best is yet to come.” Reuters





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California Headline USA Los Angeles New York Politics

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris pray for the COVID dead as grim total passes 400,000 in US

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris used their first joint appearance in Washington D.C. Tuesday to mark the loss of more than 400,000 American lives to COVID – hours after the grim total was reached.

They both appeared with First Lady-in waiting Jill Biden and Second Gentleman-in waiting Doug Emhoff in a sign of their determination to change the tone from Donald Trump’s administration.

The ceremony was held in front of the Lincoln Memorial, to mark the illumination of 400 lights situated around the Reflecting Pool to pay tribute to the 400,000-plus Americans who have now lost their lives to COVID-19. 

‘To heal we must remember. It’s hard sometimes to remember. But that’s how we heal. It’s important to do that as a nation. That’s why we’re here today,’ Biden said. ‘Between sundown and dusk let us shine the lights in the darkness, along the sacred pool of reflection and remember all we lost.’

Behind him, the lights around the reflecting pool then turned on. 

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris offered her own remarks before Biden. 

‘We gather tonight a nation in mourning to pay tribute to the lives we have lost,’ said Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. ‘A grandmother or grandfather who was our whole world. A parent, partner, sibling or friend who we still cannot accept is no longer here.’

Alluding to President Donald Trump’s hands-off handling of the pandemic, the incoming VP said ‘for many months, we have grieved by ourselves.’

‘Tonight we grieve and begin healing. Tonight though we may be physically separated, we, the American people, are united in spirit,’ Harris said.

Gospel singer Yolanda Adams sang ‘Hallelujah.’ While Lori Marie Key, a nurse in Michigan who performed to her COVID-19 patients, sang ‘Amazing Grace.’

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Joe Biden and Kamala Harris used their first joint appearance in Washington D.C. Tuesday to mark the loss of more than 400,000 American lives to COVID

400 lights around the Reflecting Pool were illuminated to pay tribute to the 400,000-plus Americans who have now lost their lives to COVID-19

400 lights around the Reflecting Pool were illuminated to pay tribute to the 400,000-plus Americans who have now lost their lives to COVID-19

'To heal we must remember. It's hard sometimes to remember. But that's how we heal. It's important to do that as a nation. That's why we're here today,' Biden said

‘To heal we must remember. It’s hard sometimes to remember. But that’s how we heal. It’s important to do that as a nation. That’s why we’re here today,’ Biden said

Buildings around the country were also illuminated to mark the moment, including in Biden's birthplace of Scranton, Pennsylvania

Buildings around the country were also illuminated to mark the moment, including in Biden’s birthplace of Scranton, Pennsylvania

Harris also offered her own remarks, in which she insisted the American people are 'united in spirit' as they gathered to mourn lost loved ones across the nation

Harris also offered her own remarks, in which she insisted the American people are ‘united in spirit’ as they gathered to mourn lost loved ones across the nation

More Americans have died from COVID-19 than those killed during World War I, the Korean War and the Vietnam War combined

An illuminated Reflecting Pool is seen in the above aerial image during Tuesday evening's ceremony

An illuminated Reflecting Pool is seen in the above aerial image during Tuesday evening’s ceremony 

Biden and Harris will be sworn in on Wednesday. The President-elect came straight from Joint Base Andrews with this family for the ceremony.

Cardinal Wilton Gregory, the Catholic Archbishop of Washington, opened the ceremony with a prayer for those lost to COVID.

‘At his twilight hour, our beloved nation reverently pauses in supplication to remember and to pray for the many thousands of people who have died from the coronavirus during this past year,’ Gregory said.

He noted that ‘we are all united in the sorrow that we recognize today.’

‘We pray for those who have died and the families and loved ones that they left behind,’ he said.

At previous inaugurations, the Lincoln has been used as a backdrop for celebratory affairs.

In 2017, on inauguration eve, Trump hosted a concert there featuring country star Toby Keith, as well as Lee Greenwood and Three Doors Down.

President Barack Obama used the Lincoln for a massive concert on January 18, 2009, featuring U2, Beyonce and Bruce Springsteen. More than 400,000 people showed up for the event.

On Tuesday, however, police and National Guard troops were the only ones present.

There were empty streets and fenced off areas around the National Mall, as Biden’s motorcade from Joint Base Andrews weaved through to the Lincoln Memorial.

Members of Vice President-elect Kamala Harris’ family were spotted waiting for the event to begin, including her niece Meena with daughters Amara and Leela, all dressed in suffragette white.

Joe and Jill Biden huddle together to mourn the lost lives of more than 400,000 Americans on Tuesday night in DC

Joe and Jill Biden huddle together to mourn the lost lives of more than 400,000 Americans on Tuesday night in DC

With the Washington Monument in the background, President-elect Joe Biden with his wife Jill Biden listen to Cardinal Wilton Daniel Gregory speak

With the Washington Monument in the background, President-elect Joe Biden with his wife Jill Biden listen to Cardinal Wilton Daniel Gregory speak

On Tuesday, only police and National Guard troops were the only ones present at the event. In previous years, crowds of more than 400,000 have descended on DC for the inauguration concert

On Tuesday, only police and National Guard troops were the only ones present at the event. In previous years, crowds of more than 400,000 have descended on DC for the inauguration concert 

The Bidens hold hangs as they stare out over the Reflecting Pool during the memorial on Tuesday

The Bidens hold hangs as they stare out over the Reflecting Pool during the memorial on Tuesday

America's death toll is the highest in the world despite the country accounting for less than five percent of the global population

America’s death toll is the highest in the world despite the country accounting for less than five percent of the global population

Alluding to President Donald Trump’s hands off handling of the pandemic, incoming VP Harris said ‘for many months, we have grieved by ourselves’

Elsewhere in the United States, landmarks across the nation were also illuminated across Tuesday evening as part of the ceremony, including the Empire State building in New York City.  

‘Hundreds of towns, cities, tribes, landmarks, and communities all across the country have committed to joining the tribute in a national moment of unity,’ Biden’s inaugural committee said in a statement. 

Local officials from Miami, Florida, to San Diego, California, said buildings in their cities would be lit for the occasion.

The Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City was inviting the public to light a candle on its front steps on Tuesday evening before a solemn bell toll.

The ceremony marks the beginning of a new era in the country’s battle against COVID-19 under Biden, who has pledged to make coronavirus relief a top priority when he takes office on Wednesday under unprecedented security measures in the nation’s capital.

In addition, instead of the usual Inauguration Day crowds, approximately 191,500 flags will cover the National Mall in honor of those unable to travel to Washington due to the pandemic.

Biden and Harris appeared with First Lady-in waiting Jill Biden and Second Gentleman-in waiting Doug Emhoff in a sign of their determination to change the tone from Donald Trump’s administration

Biden and Harris appeared with First Lady-in waiting Jill Biden and Second Gentleman-in waiting Doug Emhoff in a sign of their determination to change the tone from Donald Trump’s administration

President Barack Obama used the Lincoln for a massive concert on January 18, 2009, featuring U2, Beyonce and Bruce Springsteen

President Barack Obama used the Lincoln for a massive concert on January 18, 2009, featuring U2, Beyonce and Bruce Springsteen

From the Lincoln Memorial to the Empire State building (above), landmarks across the United States will be also illuminated across Tuesday evening

From the Lincoln Memorial to the Empire State building (above), landmarks across the United States will be also illuminated across Tuesday evening

Tuesday’s ceremony came just hours after the US reached a grim milestone by surpassing 400,000 coronavirus deaths, data from Johns Hopkins University revealed.

That figure is more than the number of Americans who died during World War I, the Korean War and the Vietnam War combined and nearly the same number who died in World War II 

To put into context, it is about the population of Tulsa, Oklahoma; Tampa, Florida; or New Orleans. It is equivalent to the sea of humanity that was at Woodstock in 1969. 

It’s also almost exactly one year to the day since the first virus case was detected in Seattle on January 21. The first known deaths from the virus in the U.S. were in early February 2020, both of them in Santa Clara County, California. 

America’s death toll is the highest in the world despite the country accounting for less than five percent of the global population.

More than 24.1 million people have been infected since the pandemic began. 

And the virus isn’t finished with the U.S. by any means. Even with the arrival of the vaccines, a widely cited model by the University of Washington projects the death toll will reach nearly 567,000 by May 1 of this year. 

While the Trump administration has been credited with Operation Warp Speed, the crash program to develop and distribute coronavirus vaccines, Trump repeatedly downplayed the threat, mocked masks and railed against lockdowns, promoted unproven and unsafe treatments, undercut scientific experts and expressed scant compassion for the victims.

Even his own bout with COVID-19 last year left him unchanged.

The White House defended the administration.

‘We grieve every single life lost to this pandemic, and thanks to the president’s leadership, Operation Warp Speed has led to the development of multiple safe and effective vaccines in record time, something many said would never happen,’ said White House spokesman Judd Deere.

President-elect Joe Biden and his wife Jill are seen arriving for the memorial  on Tuesday evening

President-elect Joe Biden and his wife Jill are seen arriving for the memorial  on Tuesday evening

Biden said: ‘Between sundown and dusk let us shine the lights in the darkness, along the sacred pool of reflection and remember all we lost’

Biden and Harris will be sworn in on Wednesday. The President-elect came straight from Joint Base Andrews with this family for the ceremony.

Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and husband Douglas Emhoff attend a Covid-19 Memorial at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC

Biden and Harris will be sworn in on Wednesday. The President-elect came straight from Joint Base Andrews with this family for the ceremony

US Secret Service special operations personnel stand post in the hours leading up to the event. The personnel are seen in the above image standing next to a sniper rifle

US Secret Service special operations personnel stand post in the hours leading up to the event. The personnel are seen in the above image standing next to a sniper rifle

Staff members clean the glass on a protective shield and the podium before President-elect Joe Biden speaks

Staff members clean the glass on a protective shield and the podium before President-elect Joe Biden speaks

The ceremony was held in front of the Lincoln Memorial, to mark the illumination of 400 lights situated around the Reflecting Pool to pay tribute to the 400,000-plus Americans who have now lost their lives to COVID-19

The ceremony was held in front of the Lincoln Memorial, to mark the illumination of 400 lights situated around the Reflecting Pool to pay tribute to the 400,000-plus Americans who have now lost their lives to COVID-19

National Guard soldiers patrol the grounds of the Lincoln Memorial ahead of the COVID memorial on Tuesday afternoon

National Guard soldiers patrol the grounds of the Lincoln Memorial ahead of the COVID memorial on Tuesday afternoon

President-elect Joe Biden and incoming First Lady Jill Biden arrive at Joint Base Andrews the day before he will be inaugurated

President-elect Joe Biden and incoming First Lady Jill Biden arrive at Joint Base Andrews the day before he will be inaugurated

On Tuesday, the United States surpassed 400,000 coronavirus deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University, close to one year after the very first death was recorded

On Tuesday, the United States surpassed 400,000 coronavirus deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University, close to one year after the very first death was recorded

Biden will inherit a grieving and sickened nation from Trump, who critics say was to blame for a disjointed and ineffectual response to the pandemic, resulting in the United States having the highest COVID-19 death toll in the world.

On Tuesday, his last full day as president, Trump had no public events scheduled, although U.S. Vice President Mike Pence was planning to convene the White House Coronavirus Task Force for its last meeting under his watch.

Many of Biden’s policy plans fly in the face of the Trump administration’s approach to combating the pandemic. 

They include a mask mandate that would apply to federal properties, planes and buses and a recommitment to the World Health Organization after Trump’s withdrawal from the agency.

Biden will also face the daunting task of overseeing the nation’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution and administration. 

The United States is trailing in its vaccination goal, with just 14.7 million Americans have been vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Tuesday morning, and only about 54 percent of vaccine doses distributed to states have been administered to people, according to data from Bloomberg.   

Some states like California are floundering with vaccination rollout, using a meager 40 percent of doses distributed to it. 

However, North Dakota is flying through the doses sent to it by the federal government, using 78 percent of its allotted doses and vaccinating just shy of seven percent of its population. 

States, tasked with rolling out their own vaccine programs, have lamented a lack of funding and support from the federal government. Some localities say they do not have adequate supply to meet demand.

Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday warned New York City will run out of vaccine doses as soon as Thursday and will be forced to cancel many appointments if it does not get resupplied quickly.

‘We will have literally nothing left to give as of Friday,’ de Blasio told a news conference.

This means more Americans have died from COVID-19 than died during World War I, the Korean War and the Vietnam War combined

This means more Americans have died from COVID-19 than died during World War I, the Korean War and the Vietnam War combined

The death toll comes on President Donald Trump's final full day in office. Pictured: Trump boards Air Force One before departing Harlingen, Texas, January 12, 2021

The death toll comes on President Donald Trump’s final full day in office. Pictured: Trump boards Air Force One before departing Harlingen, Texas, January 12, 2021

The first known deaths from the virus in the U.S. were in early February 2020, both of them in Santa Clara County, California. Pictured: Artist Suzanne Brennan Firstenberg walks among thousands of white flags planted in remembrance of Americans who have died of COVID-19 near Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium in Washington, October 2020

The first known deaths from the virus in the U.S. were in early February 2020, both of them in Santa Clara County, California. Pictured: Artist Suzanne Brennan Firstenberg walks among thousands of white flags planted in remembrance of Americans who have died of COVID-19 near Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium in Washington, October 2020

Since the first case was detected in the U.S. in Seattle on January 21, more than 24.1 million Americans have been infected

Since the first case was detected in the U.S. in Seattle on January 21, more than 24.1 million Americans have been infected

Transporters Miguel Lopez, front, and Noe Meza wheel a gurney carrying a deceased COVID-19 patient at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in the Mission Hills section of Los Angeles, January 9, 2021

Transporters Miguel Lopez, front, and Noe Meza wheel a gurney carrying a deceased COVID-19 patient at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in the Mission Hills section of Los Angeles, January 9, 2021

Approximately 191,500 flags will cover the National Mall in honor of those unable to travel to Washington for the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden due to the pandemic (above)

Approximately 191,500 flags will cover the National Mall in honor of those unable to travel to Washington for the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden due to the pandemic (above)

Biden has said he will seek a $1.9 trillion spending proposal that includes funding for accelerating the distribution of coronavirus vaccines, and Democrats, who now hold a slight majority in Congress, hope to prioritize state and local aid in the next stimulus deal.

Earlier today, Dr Anthony Fauci, says masks and social distancing aren’t going anywhere any time soon and that the nation may have to prepare for the fact that COVID-19 is here to stay.

‘We have to make that as a possibility. We’ve got to be prepared for that,’ said Fauci told morning show The National Desk on Tuesday.

‘Right now we’re fortunate enough to have a vaccine that is extremely efficacious for the strain that now is circulating in our own country. We may need to make modifications, as new strains that are different come in.’ 

The nation’s top infectious disease expert says normalcy may only occur when the majority of the country is vaccinated.   

‘When we get the country to be 70 percent to 85 percent vaccinated, and we get this blanket or umbrella of herd immunity so that the level of virus is so low in society that it’s not really a threat to anybody, then we can start coming down on the stringency of the public health measures,’ Fauci said. 

‘Bottom line is that if you get vaccinated, you can’t throw away the masks, because you could be infected and conceivably infect others.’  

North Dakota administered 3,222 vaccines on January 14 alone, according to its latest data. Nearly six percent of its population has had their first shot, and nearly one percent have already received their second. 

Meanwhile, the state has 1,377 active cases of COVID-19 as of Monday – just a little over 10 percent as many as it saw at its November peak of 10,195. 

Deaths in North Dakota continue to climb, but have leveled off since November. 

Throughout much the nation, a game of federal and state he-said-she-said continues, and is doing little to speed the sluggish rollout. 

Houston, Texas, officials say they are receiving sporadic shipments of small numbers of vaccine doses. 

‘Right now, having (doses) one day and then running out, it just creates a lot of chaos,’ said Galveston County health director Dr Philip Keiser on Monday, according to Houston Public Media. 

North Dakota has given nearly 53,000 of the 76,275 doses sent to it, and kept up a consistent flow of administering vaccines since its first doses arrived last month (pictured), according to the state's health department

North Dakota has given nearly 53,000 of the 76,275 doses sent to it, and kept up a consistent flow of administering vaccines since its first doses arrived last month (pictured), according to the state’s health department 

Active coronavirus cases have fallen by 80% and the number of new daily infections in the state is a fraction of what it had been a month ago when North Dakota was among the nation's top hotspots

Active coronavirus cases have fallen by 80% and the number of new daily infections in the state is a fraction of what it had been a month ago when North Dakota was among the nation’s top hotspots 

Cumulative deaths have increased in North Dakota, but the state has drastically bent the curve of fatalities since it climbed steeply last month, reaching a peak of 499 deaths in November, followed by 278 in December and 37 so far in January

Cumulative deaths have increased in North Dakota, but the state has drastically bent the curve of fatalities since it climbed steeply last month, reaching a peak of 499 deaths in November, followed by 278 in December and 37 so far in January 

About 31.1 million doses of coronavirus vaccines have been sent to US states by the federal government, according to tracking from Bloomberg. 

While West Virginia races to the head of the pack, vaccinating nearly nine percent of its population in just a month, California and Alabama rank worst, getting shots in the arms of just 3.3 percent and 2.7 percent of their residents, respectively. 

Mass vaccination sites opened in larger states like New York, California and Florida, but rates of shot administration remain low. 

Some of the states that have most vocally blamed the federal government for the vaccine rollout are among the slowest to use the doses sent to them.  

California has vaccinated just 3.3 percent of its population and used a little over a third of its allotted doses, despite turning Disneyland and Dodger Stadium into mass vaccination sites.  

Only about 3% of Americans have gotten their first doses of coronavirus vaccines, with the highest rates in West Virginia and the Dakotas, and the lowest rates of vaccination are in Alabama and Arizona 

More than half of all doses of coronavirus vaccines distributed to US states are sitting on the shelves, with the highest rates of unused shots in California and Texas – despite the former being  one of the worst hotspots for COVID-19 in the country 

Former FDA chief Dr. Scott Gottlieb estimates only a THIRD of the US population really want the COVID vaccine 

By Keith Griffith for DailyMail.com

The former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration has shared concerns that the rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations will be slowed by large numbers refusing the shot, predicting only a third of the U.S. population will volunteer for inoculation.

Dr. Scott Gottlieb aired his concerns in an interview with CNBC on Tuesday morning, saying that many younger people who are unlikely to face serious illness might decline to get vaccinated.

So far, 10.5 million Americans have received at least one dose of a COVID vaccine, out of the 31 million doses distributed to states, according to the latest available CDC data. 

Dr. Anthony Fauci has estimated that up to 80 percent of the U.S. population, or some 260 million people, will need to get vaccinated to achieve herd immunity, the point at which the virus is unable to spread widely.

‘At some point demand is going to become an issue,’ Gottlieb said in the interview, pointing out that last fall, the number of people getting a flu vaccine hit a record high, but was still only 120 million.

‘Those were people who were worried about getting COVID going out and getting flu vaccines. That may be the universe of people who really have significant demand for a COVID vaccine,’ he said.

‘There’s going to be a lot of intense demand even in younger cohorts, but I think once we get to 100 million, maybe 120 million vaccines, the demand is going to get soft,’ he added.

‘We’ve talked about access being the real challenge right now, and now we’re talking about supply because we’re starting to get to a steady state of supply and it’s hard to increase the supply in the near term,’ said Gottlieb. ‘At some point, demand is going to be come an issue.’

‘We can’t lose sight of that and just take for granted that everyone wants this vaccine,’ he said.

New York is faring a little better using up 53 percent of its doses and vaccinated about 5.4 percent of its population. 

Southern and Sun Belt states are struggling. Alabama and Arizona have each vaccinated just 2.7 percent of their populations. 

That’s particularly worrisome for Arizona, which has had more coronavirus infections per capita than any where else in the world.  

The surprise leaders in the race remain West Virginia and the Dakotas.  

West Virginia was the only state in the union turned down the federal government’s partnership with CVS and WalGreens to help vaccinate its nursing home residents. 

And now it’s vaccinated 8.6 percent of its population – more than than any other states. 

North and South Dakota have vaccinated nearly seven and 6.45 percent of their respective populations. 

A senior federal official told DailyMail.com that the US will meet its goal of distributing 50 million doses to states this week.  

But at this rate, it could be weeks before all of those doses make it into Americans’ arms. 

States have given fewer than half of the doses the federal government has shipped – 46 percent – yet some say they are running out of doses. 

Reports emerged last week that there was no federal stockpile of second doses to increase states’ supplies – after HHS Secretary Alex Azar promised that the reserve would be released – triggering panic. 

Federal officials say that the number of doses made available to states each week has increased, but that the notion that the government ever had a stockpile was incorrect. 

In fact, a senior administration official told DailyMail.com that some states are not completing all their orders for new doses each week, leaving them shorthanded. 

Yet states, including Texas, say they’re on pace to run out of doses of vaccine by next week if they continue to administer as many as possible.  

Since it began over a month ago, the US coronavirus vaccine rollout has been plagued by a game of federal and state ‘he said, she said,’ and little seems to have changed.  

The emergence of more infectious coronavirus variants, including the UK’s ‘super-covid,’ should be a ‘clarion call’ to Americans to get vaccinated, said Dr Anthony Fauci during a Sunday Meet the Press appearance. 

But the uptake has been slow.   

Los Angeles is among the worst hotspots for coronavirus in the US and health workers are racing to vaccinate at-risk people - including nursing home residents in Pasadena (pictured, file), but the state has used just 27.5% of its allotted doses

Los Angeles is among the worst hotspots for coronavirus in the US and health workers are racing to vaccinate at-risk people – including nursing home residents in Pasadena (pictured, file), but the state has used just 27.5% of its allotted doses 

Experts say yet another factor is holding up the rollout: ‘We’re underselling the vaccine’ Dr Aaron Richterman, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Pennsylvania told the New York Times.  

He’s not alone in thinking that attempts to temper expectations and keep Americans from ripping of their masks as soon as they get their first doses of COVID-19 vaccines may be misguided. 

‘It’s driving me a little bit crazy,’ Dr Ashish Jha of the Brown School of Public told the Times. 

Vaccines made by both Moderna and Pfizer are more than 94 percent effective at preventing COVID-19, and that should be the focus of public messaging, the experts say. 

That’s not to say that questions still being researched – such as rather the shots prevent infection or transmission altogether – should be concealed, nor that warnings about potential side effects shouldn’t be clear. 

But, Dr Jha and Dr Richterman worry that the emphasis on what’s unknown is fueling hesitancy and slowing the uptake of shots. 

One California epidemiologist on Sunday called for Moderna to put a hold on 330,000 doses from one lot that have already been distributed after ‘fewer than 10’ people had possible severe allergic reactions to the shots within 24 hours. 

Moderna, the FDA and the CDC are all investigating the incidences, but said in a statement to Fox News that vaccination is never without risks. 

The reactions all happened within the observation period while the recipients were still at the vaccination site in San Diego.  

Health care workers and nursing home residents were put first in line for coronavirus vaccines. 

But during the first weeks of the rollout, staggering numbers of health care workers turned down the shots. 

One Illinois veterans nursing home said that while about 90 percent of its elderly residents had said ‘yes’ to the shot, some 80 percent of staff had said ‘no.’ 

Nurses in Texas and California – two of the nation’s worst hotspots for COVID-19 – said they and about half of their colleagues planned to refuse or delay vaccination.

In New York, four doses of vaccine had to be thrown out because willing recipients working in health care could not be found in time to use the shots before they expired. 

Amid suspicion that resistance among health care workers and rigid state plans for who could be vaccinated when were the problem, federal officials urged vaccination to be opened up to people 65 and older. 

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Headlines UK London

Property searches double for the Cotswolds in lockdown

The already in-demand Cotswolds have reached new heights of desirability amid the coronavirus pandemic, new research has suggested.

The area’s pretty rural villages have long been a favourite among the rich and famous, with homes in the area owned by Kate Moss, Jeremy Clarkson, David Cameron, Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen and the Beckhams, to name but a few.

And the desire to stay at home in somewhere more picturesque means the area’s rolling hills and open spaces are even more sought-after, with online searches for properties in the Cotswolds doubling in the second half of last year.

The number of sales agreed in the Cotswolds (pictured) rose 100 per cent in September

Online searches on Rightmove for the Cotswolds rose 102 per cent in the last six months of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019.

The property website said the increase in searches came as people looked to relocate for a quieter life in the countryside.

Rightmove explained its focus on the Cotswolds, saying that it saw a big shift in the number of people who were looking to move to the countryside last year, and as one of the country’s most iconic rural regions, it wanted to examine whether the Cotswolds in particular had seen a surge in interest. 

The Cotswolds covers 787 square miles, stretching from just south of Stratford-upon-Avon to just south of Bath near Radstock. It lies across the boundaries of several English counties, including mainly Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire, but also in parts of Wiltshire, Somerset, Worcestershire and Warwickshire.

The number of sales being agreed by agents in the Cotswolds outperformed the South West as a whole, peaking in September, Rightmove said.

There was a 100 per cent annual rise in the number of sales that were agreed by agents in the Cotswolds in September. 

This two-bedroom cottage in Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire, is for sale for £555,000

This two-bedroom cottage in Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire, is for sale for £555,000

The cottage in Chipping Campden has a garden and is for sale via estate agents Knight Frank

The cottage in Chipping Campden has a garden and is for sale via estate agents Knight Frank

Rightmove found that Wotton-under-Edge in Gloucestershire is where house prices increased the most in the Cotswolds in 2020.

Average asking prices in the leafy market town were up 14.8 per cent on 2019, an annual increase of £38,290.

The place with the biggest annual increases in buyer searches in the Cotswolds was celebrity hub Chipping Norton, up by 109.5 per cent, followed by Burford – up 82.3 per cent – and Chipping Campden, up 68.5 per cent.

Rightmove’s Tim Bannister said: ‘The headline market trend to emerge from 2020 was a huge jump in demand for rural areas and countryside living, and the Cotswolds ticks pretty much every box for home-movers seeking an escape to the country.

‘As a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, brimming with endless walking trails and tight-knit village communities, the Cotswolds represent much of what we hold dear about the great British outdoors.

‘It’s easy to see why the area is a magnet for people looking for a quieter life, and with remote working seemingly here to stay for many, I expect the popularity of the Cotswolds will continue to grow this year.’

This six-bedroom house near Minchinhampton, in Gloucestershire, is for sale for £1,495,000

This six-bedroom house near Minchinhampton, in Gloucestershire, is for sale for £1,495,000

Equestrian facilities: The six-bedroom house (as above) also boasts land and several stables

Equestrian facilities: The six-bedroom house (as above) also boasts land and several stables

Rupert Sweeting, of estate agents Knight Frank, described Cotswolds property viewing and buying as ‘completely frantic’ since the housing market re-opened in May.

He said: ‘In addition to the traditional reasons that have always attracted buyers to the Cotswolds, including the beautiful scenery, good schooling, and well-established transport links, the pandemic has drawn attention to how the Cotswolds can also offer a dreamy countryside lifestyle, strong broadband networks, and space and gardens without compromising convenient facilities.

‘After experiencing being cooped up during the multiple lockdowns with a small or no garden, city dwellers quickly realized the benefits of moving to the countryside.

‘The abundance of well-equipped towns and villages in the Cotswolds means that these urban buyers are able to achieve their dream countryside retreat without having to completely isolate themselves. ‘

He added that having the likes of Soho Farmhouse and Daylesford Farmshop around, while being about an hour and a half from the centre of London is an attraction for many buyers.’

‘The idealisation of the country perfectly reflects how the pandemic has seen people revaluate their day-to-day lives and consequently propelled the Cotswolds’ property market into a frenzy,’ he said.

This two-bedroom house in Wotton-Under-Edge is for sale for £500,000 via estate agents Fine & Country

This two-bedroom house in Wotton-Under-Edge is for sale for £500,000 via estate agents Fine & Country

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Entertainment USA Hollywood

Olivia Wilde reveals she’s back filming with boyfriend Harry Styles on their movie

Olivia Wilde has revealed that she is back filming her new movie Don’t Worry Darling, which stars her new boyfriend Harry Styles, amid the coronavirus pandemic.

However, it appears that the 36-year-old actress has been forced to limit the amount of replies to the post, after she was furiously trolled by fans of the former One Direction star, 26, who claimed she should be ‘ashamed’ after going public with their romance. 

‘And we back,’ Wilde captioned an onset photo of her cameraman Matthew Libatique, which was liked by her famous pals including Jennifer Garner – though it also showed she has now disabled comments on her posts and restricted comments to only those that follow her. 

On set: Olivia Wilde, 36, revealed Tuesday she's back directing boyfriend Harry Styles, 26, in her new movie Don't Worry Darling

Controversial comments: Olivia Wilde forced to LIMIT comments on post revealing she’s back on set with boyfriend Harry Styles… after being trolled over their romance

Restricted: Comments on the post had been partially disabled to the public and limited to only those that already follow her

Restricted: Comments on the post had been partially disabled to the public and limited to only those that already follow her

Jason Sudeikis, 45, – with whom she she shares two children Otis, six, and Daisy, four – is said to have been ‘blindsided’ by the new romance, after they ended their engagement, following a seven year union which ended late last year.  

But the actress was also met with criticism from Harry Styles fans, when she was flooded with angry messages earlier this year after an innocuous post New Year meme of rock band Ramones.

Some of the One Direction star’s followers claimed the mother-of-two ‘stole’ him from them and slammed their decision to advance from colleagues to lovers, while others defended their romance and branded the hate ’embarrassing’.

'And we back,' Wilde captioned an onset photo of her cameraman Matthew Libatique, which was liked by her famous pals including Jennifer Garner

‘And we back,’ Wilde captioned an onset photo of her cameraman Matthew Libatique, which was liked by her famous pals including Jennifer Garner

Screen star Olivia’s post read: ‘2020, 24 hours to go’ – a funny spin on Ramones’ 1978 hit track I Wanna Be Sedated.

Despite the filmmakers’ efforts to inject humour into the start of the year, a few social media users took the opportunity to lash out at her for dating singer Harry.

One cruelly questioned the professionalism of Olivia’s psychological horror movie, which sees her new beau step into the leading role of Jack, who hides a dark secret from his wife Alice (Florence Pugh).

Debut: Harry and Olivia made their debut as Hollywood's hottest new power at his agent's nuptials in Montecito, California earlier this year

Debut: Harry and Olivia made their debut as Hollywood’s hottest new power at his agent’s nuptials in Montecito, California earlier this year

He took over Shia LaBeouf’s role as Florence’s love interest in September last year, and it is his first screen role since the 2017 movie Dunkirk.

They said: ‘dating a Co star and an employee isnt very professional from you …the movie should be called Harry and olivia’. (sic)

Others agreed: ‘So… Harry Styles got the part because he sleeps with the director? LOL.

‘And now we know how he got the part in the film… Did you slept with harry and you gave him the part? and you split with your husband bcoz you want to date harry?’ (sic)

Another troll ridiculed Harry’s past relationships, as well as the New Yorker’s nine-year romance with Sudeikis.

Light-hearted: The filmmaker took to Instagram earlier this month with a funny New Year meme of rock band Ramones

Light-hearted: The filmmaker took to Instagram earlier this month with a funny New Year meme of rock band Ramones

They said: ‘I know Harry have a thing for older women not a mummy with 2 babies… YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF WHAT YOU’RE DOING… DATING A BOY WHO’S WORKUNG FOR YOU!’ (sic)

However, a legion of the songwriter’s loyal fanbase urged the naysayers to stop writing negative comments on Olivia’s page, especially after Harry recently released the music video to his track Treat People with Kindness (TPWK).

Treat People with Kindness is a slogan the media personality first used to promote love and acceptance during his debut concert tour in 2017.

Naysayers: Some of the One Direction star's followers claimed the mother-of-two 'stole' him from them and slammed their decision to advance from colleagues to lovers

Naysayers: Some of the One Direction star’s followers claimed the mother-of-two ‘stole’ him from them and slammed their decision to advance from colleagues to lovers

Fans penned: ‘clearly some of you in the comments have forgotten to TREAT PEOPLE WITH KINDNESS!!!! On behalf of the SANE Harry stans, I’m sorry and this is embarrassing.

Harry and Olivia made their debut as Hollywood’s hottest new power at his agent’s nuptials in Montecito, California earlier this year. 

Their appearance marks the thespian’s first public relationship since her split from actor fiancé Jason, 45, in early 2020. 

Splitsville: The romance marks mother-of-two Olivia's first public relationship since her split from fiancé Jason Sudeikis, 45, in early 2020 after nine years together (pictured in 2019)

Splitsville: The romance marks mother-of-two Olivia’s first public relationship since her split from fiancé Jason Sudeikis, 45, in early 2020 after nine years together (pictured in 2019)

Family first: The former couple have remained committed co-parents to their two children: Otis Alexander, six, and Daisy Josephine, four (pictured)

Family first: The former couple have remained committed co-parents to their two children: Otis Alexander, six, and Daisy Josephine, four (pictured)

The happy photos came amid claims James Corden helped keep close friend Harry and Olivia’s ‘romance a secret’ after allowing the artist to stay in his home while filming Don’t Worry Darling in Palm Springs, California. 

A source told Page Six: ‘This relationship between Harry and Olivia is very new. Olivia has been directing Harry in the movie in Palm Springs, and there were literally 10 people on the set, because they were strictly adhering to COVID rules. 

‘Harry had been staying at James Corden’s house near Palm Springs during filming, and so they were able to be alone and keep their relationship very secret. 

‘So everyone was really surprised — and rather delighted — when Harry brought Olivia as his date to the wedding, and introduced her as his girlfriend.’ 

The source added that Harry doesn’t give a ‘f**k* about the 10-year age gap and was ‘openly holding hands and kissing Olivia’. Olivia, Harry and James’ representatives were contacted for comment. 

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Health

Nasal Spray Vaccine for COVID-19 in Early Trials


TUESDAY, Jan. 19, 2021 (HealthDay News) — A spritz instead of a shot to ward off COVID-19? Researchers report that a nasal spray vaccine against the new coronavirus shows promise in animal testing.

Rodents that were given two doses of the vaccine had antibody and T-cell responses that were strong enough to suppress SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

The vaccine also reduced lung damage, inflammation and disease severity in the rodents, according to scientists from Lancaster University in England and Texas Biomedical Research Institute in San Antonio.

“We found that administering this vaccine through a nasal spray completely protected the animals from shedding the virus which causes transmission of the virus. This means the immunization of the upper respiratory tract through a nasal spray can prevent individuals from spreading the virus and developing infections elsewhere in the body,” said study author Muhammad Munir, a Lancaster University virologist.

“Though the vaccine showed promising safety and efficacy in this animal model, human trials are still required to determine its applicability and to obtain regulatory approvals,” Munir added in a university news release.

The nasal spray vaccine is based on a common poultry virus called the Newcastle Disease Virus (NDV), which can replicate in humans but is harmless. The research team engineered NDV to produce the spike proteins of the SARS-CoV-2 virus to prime the body’s immune system to attack the coronavirus.

Their findings were published recently on BioRxiv, a preprint server for research that hasn’t yet been peer-reviewed.

There are a number of advantages to a nasal spray vaccine, including it being noninvasive, triggering local immunity, and being an alternative for people who are afraid of needles or have blood clotting disorders, according to the researchers.

They noted that there’s already a nasal spray vaccine for seasonal flu, so this type of vaccination has been proven to be effective.

A nasal spray vaccine for COVID-19 could provide a low-cost alternative for the developing world, because it could be produced using existing worldwide infrastructure for seasonal flu virus vaccines, the researchers suggested.

“The scalability and economical production make this vaccine candidate suitable for low- and middle-income countries,” said study author Mohammed Rohaim, also from Lancaster University.


More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on COVID-19 vaccines.


SOURCE: Lancaster University, news release, Jan. 13, 2021





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Health

Do You Socially Distance? Your Income Might Matter


By Cara Murez

HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Jan. 19, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Do you you keep 6 feet apart from others to help stop coronavirus spread? New research shows that the wealthier you were at the start of the pandemic, the more likely it is you’ll maintain social distance.

The new study looked at social distancing and mask wearing, and determined a link between those behaviors and income.


“We need to understand these differences because we can wring our hands, and we can blame and shame, but in a way it doesn’t matter,” said study author Nick Papageorge, the Broadus Mitchell Associate Professor of Economics at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.

“Policymakers just need to recognize who is going to socially distance, for how long, why and under what circumstances to give us accurate predictions of how the disease will spread and help us establish policies that will be useful,” he said in a Hopkins news release.

The research was part of a six-country survey. In the United States, 1,000 people from Texas, Florida, California and New York were asked questions last April about demographic information and their behavior as COVID-19 cases were spiking.

People with the highest incomes made the most changes. They were 32% more likely to increase social distancing, 30% more likely to increase hand-washing and mask wearing and 13% more likely to change behaviors.

The ability to work from home and having access to outdoor space made a significant difference.

People with higher incomes were more likely to be able to work from home, which made them 24% more likely to keep social distance. Lower-income people experienced increased chances of losing their job because of the pandemic, and they also had limited access to remote work, the study found.

“The whole messaging of this pandemic is you’re stuck at home teleworking, that must be really tough so here are some recipes for sourdough starter, and here’s what you should catch up on Netflix,” Papageorge said. “But what about the people who aren’t teleworking? What are they going to do?”


Continued

People with access to the outdoors at home were 20% more likely to maintain social distance.

“It’s not shocking that if you don’t live in a comfortable house you’re going to be leaving your house more often,” Papageorge said. “But the point we want to push is that if I’m a policymaker maybe I really need to think about opening city parks in a dense neighborhood during a pandemic. Maybe that’s something that’s worth the risk. This is why we want to understand these details — they can eventually suggest policies.”

The study also found that women were 23% more likely than men to social distance. There was not a meaningful difference in social distancing behavior because of preexisting health conditions.

The research was published Jan. 14 in the Journal of Population Economics.


More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more information on protecting yourself and others from COVID-19.



SOURCE: Johns Hopkins University, news release, Jan. 14, 2021



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