Today’s political headlines include children at risk of knife crime while on the way home from school, May accused of shutting out cabinet for a secret Brexit deal, Arron Banks and Leave.EU accused of illegal use of customer data and criticism of May banned in Grenfell safety deal.
Children most at risk of knife crime while on the way home from school
The front pages of both The Guardian and The Sun feature stories on the increase in knife crime involving children. According to figures, children are most likely to be victims of stabbings while on their way home from school. Research was published in the British Medical Journal showing that more than a fifth of stabbing victims under the age of 16 are admitted to hospital between 4pm and 6pm on weekdays. Doctors have suggested staggering school finishing times in order to reduce the risk of violence.
May accused of shutting out Cabinet in secret Brexit deal
The Daily Telegraph says Brexiteers are suspicious that Theresa May has already agreed to a secret deal with Brussels. A leaked memo – which the BBC has apparently seen – has sparked accusations that May is lining up a deal behind the backs of her Cabinet. The memo is said to contain plans including announcements, a major speech and a television interview, to sell the deal to the British public over the coming weeks. There is said to be a vote on the deal scheduled for the 27 November.
Arron Banks and Leave.EU accused of illegal use of customer data in Brexit vote
The Financial Times reports on the accusations faced by pro-Brexit campaign group Leave.EU and an insurance company owned by Arron Banks over the illegal use of customer data in the run up to the EU referendum. UK regulators have said that Banks’ insurance operations permitted the use of its customer information for political purposes, including a Brexit newsletter that was sent by Leave.EU to over 300,000 email addresses from the customer database of Banks’ Eldon Insurance.
Criticism of May banned in Grenfell safety deal
The Times reports that the engineering firm, WSP, that is testing the cladding on Government buildings in the wake of the Grenfell fire, has been forced to sign a gagging clause. The clause prevents WSP from criticising the Prime Minister and the Cabinet Office in any way possible. A further investigation into the matter revealed that Cabinet ministers have banned 40 charities and more than 300 companies from criticising them or their departments. The Grenfell United Campaign group has spoken against the Government, arguing it should not deter the firms from speaking out.
Another gagging clause: Chris Grayling silenced justice charities
According to The Times, Chris Grayling’s changes to the probation services in 2015 were deemed to be a failure, however a number of charities working with prisoner rehabilitation like ‘Change, Grow, Live’ were prevented from saying anything that would damage the reputation of Chris Grayling. Under the Ministry of Justice’s probation reforms it was agreed that all contractors and subcontractors had to agree to the same terms for sevens years. One Government official reported that such clauses help to protect commercial interests and do not stop individuals from raising concerns about policy. The Department for Work and Pensions have completely denied all such allegations.
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