UK investigation into Downing Avenue Covid lockdown events finds ‘failures of management’

Prime Minister Boris Johnson leaves 10 Downing Street to make a statement at Parliament on January 31, 2022 in London, England.

Dan Kitwood | News from Getty Images | Getty Images

LONDON – The preliminary findings of an inquiry into Covid-19 lockdown parties at Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s office and home have sharply criticized Downing Street culture.

The 12-page interim report, released in redacted form on the government website on Monday, makes clear that lockdown parties “should not have happened” while others “should not have unfolded as they did”.

In a series of damning conclusions, senior official Sue Gray’s partial findings said there were “faults in leadership and judgment by various parts of No. 10 and the Cabinet Office at different times” and some of the behavior was “difficult to justify.”

It also noted that excessive consumption of alcohol was “at no time appropriate in a professional workplace” and some employees wanted to raise concerns about behaviors they observed but felt unable to do so.

“At least some of the assemblies in question represent a serious failure to live up not only to the high standards expected of those who work at the heart of government, but also to the standards that were expected at that time from the whole of the British public,” says the report.

Gray said it was unable to produce a meaningful report after the Metropolitan Police controversially asked them to provide “minimal clues” about parties they are also investigating.

The Met’s move provoked a backlash from British lawmakers, who accused the police of trying to influence the political process and “whitewashing” the report.

After multiple reports of various gatherings and alleged parties at government buildings, the latest revelation in recent weeks has been that an event was being held during the lockdown to celebrate Johnson’s birthday on June 19, 2020.

Johnson so far resisted demands for his resignation from across the political spectrum, despite public anger over the long and growing list of alleged lockdown violations.

In response to Gray’s interim report, Johnson told lawmakers assembled in the House of Commons that he regretted the way the matter had been handled and accepted that it was time to review the codes of conduct.

“First, I want to apologize,” Johnson said on Monday afternoon. “I’m sorry for the things we just didn’t do right and also for the way this matter was handled.”

Acknowledging that apologizing is not enough, Johnson said he would set up a prime minister’s office with a permanent secretary.

“I understand it and I will fix it,” Johnson said, prompting a chorus of jeers from opposition lawmakers.

Opposition Labor leader Keir Starmer said that “the Prime Minister thought we were all fools by routinely breaking the rules he had laid down”.

“He cheerfully treats what should be a mark of shame as a welcome shield,” Starmer added, noting that Gray’s report shows there are 12 cases that have reached the threshold for a criminal investigation.

The Prime Minister is expected to address all Conservative MPs at a meeting tonight.

What happens next?

Many lawmakers loyal to Johnson, including his closest colleagues, had repeatedly said they would “wait for the results” of Sue Gray’s report before passing judgment on their leader.

Conservative politicians’ oft-repeated phrase has allowed the Prime Minister to buy some time to campaign for support from lawmakers to stave off a no-confidence vote – which will be triggered when 54 Tory MPs send letters of no-confidence to the chairman of the 1922 Committee, one influential group of backbenchers addressing leadership challenges.

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Britain’s Boris Johnson is threatened with a vote of no confidence. Here’s what it takes

It is not known how many letters were sent to the 1922 leader, Graham Brady, as the letters are kept secret, although a number of politicians have publicly stated that they no longer have confidence in Johnson’s leadership.

It will now be closely observed whether the required 54 letters from Brady will be declared after Gray’s results are published. If enough no-confidence letters are received, a vote of confidence would be triggered.

If a majority of Tory MPs voted to support Johnson in the vote, current rules mean that no new vote can be called for another 12 months, although the 1922 Committee is reportedly considering changing that rule to include two votes allow per year.

Should Johnson lose the vote, he would be forced to resign and a Conservative leadership contest would begin. In that case, Johnson would not be admitted as a deposed leader.

Of course, another alternative would be for Johnson to resign of his own accord, but he shows no sign of intending to do so.

Some lawmakers may prefer to wait and see how the Conservative Party fares in local elections in May, allowing them to gauge public anger at Partygate. However, opinion polls have already shown that trust and support for Johnson and his administration have fallen.

party over?

Johnson’s leadership was under immense pressure after weeks of media reports (dating back before Christmas) of several parties and gatherings attended by government employees, including at times Johnson.

One gathering in particular captured Johnson when it took place in May 2020, at the height of the first lockdown, when the general public was only allowed to meet one other person from outside their household outdoors.

Johnson admitted before Parliament in early January that he had attended the party – dubbed the ‘bring your own boek’ gathering in Downing Street’s garden, to which around 100 people were reportedly invited.

But he told lawmakers he only attended the party for 25 minutes to thank “groups of staff” for their hard work and that he “implicitly believed this was a work event,” a comment made by opposition politicians was mocked.

The opposition Labor Party was scathing at Johnson’s leadership and his comments on his participation in the party in May 2020, calling for the Prime Minister to resign.

As Johnson offered the nation his “sincere apologies” for attending the event, Labor leader Starmer said Johnson’s explanation for his attendance was “so ridiculous that it is actually offensive to the British public” as he urged Johnson to ” do the right thing and resign.”

Lafayette Hill-based E5 Cell Leisure reserving for events and occasions

E5 Mobile Entertainment books parties and events for the next 12 months. The gaming trucks offer children and adults an exciting birthday or other celebration with a variety of game systems and age-appropriate games as well as other experiences such as virtual reality, laser tag and lawn games. And yes, they have Fortnite, Mario, and Minecraft! The company is owned and operated by a local Lafayette Hill family.

A typical package for a birthday party includes:

  • Game truck
  • 7 TVs with the full game library
  • PS4s, Xbox 1s, Nintendo Switch
  • 15 to 28 players at the same time (based on COVID restrictions)
  • Play coach
  • Custom digital invitations
  • An E5 gamer t-shirt for the celebrant
  • Glow in the dark E5 bracelet for every participant
  • Person who manages the COVID security logs

The gaming truck isn’t just for kids. The gaming trailer is also a huge hit for corporate events, weddings, bachelorette parties, and other adult social gatherings.

Take a look inside and outside the E5 Gaming Truck Experience in the video above.

For more information or to arrange a party, contact E5 Mobile Gaming by emailing info@e5me.com, calling (610) 945-1897, or filling out the form Here.

Brazil Carnival goes on-line with road events banned | Leisure




A woman disguised as a superhero and wearing a mask to contain the spread of the new coronavirus will perform in the street band “Desliga da Justica” in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Sunday, February 14, 2021. Their performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend the carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended the carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




A member of the street band “Desliga da Justica” will put on their costume on Sunday, February 14th, 2021 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The group’s performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend the Carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended Carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

Musicians will perform in the street band “Desliga da Justica” in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Sunday, February 14th, 2021. Her appearance was broadcast live on social media for those unable to attend the carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended the carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

Musicians from the street band “Desliga da Justica” will perform in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Sunday, February 14th, 2021. Their performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend the carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended the carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

A member of the street band “Desliga da Justica” will put on their costume on Sunday, February 14th, 2021 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The group’s performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend the Carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended Carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

Members of the street band “Desliga da Justica” will watch their production in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Sunday, February 14th, 2021. Their performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend Carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended Carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

Members of the street band “Desliga da Justica” put on their costumes on Sunday, February 14th, 2021 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Their performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend Carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended Carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

A member of the street band “Desliga da Justica” will put on his costume on Sunday, February 14th, 2021 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The group’s performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend the Carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended Carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

A woman performs in the street band “Desliga da Justica” in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Sunday February 14th 2021. Her appearance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend the Carnival due to COVID restrictions.The city government officially suspended Carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

A member of the street band “Desliga da Justica” puts on his Spiderman costume on Sunday, February 14th, 2021 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The group’s performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend the Carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended Carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

A health care worker takes a nose sample from a member of the Desliga da Justica street band to test for COVID-19 before attending a taped and live broadcast of the group on social media in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Sunday, Attending February 14, 2021. Their performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend Carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended Carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

Musicians will perform in the street band “Desliga da Justica” in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Sunday, February 14th, 2021. Her appearance was broadcast live on social media for those unable to attend the carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended the carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.




The Brazilian Carnival goes online with banned street parties

Musicians from the street band “Desliga da Justica” will perform in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Sunday, February 14th, 2021. Their performance was streamed live on social media for those unable to attend the carnival due to COVID restrictions after the city government officially suspended the carnival and banned street parades or clandestine parties.

By MARCELO SILVA DE SOUSA and DIARLEI RODRIGUES Associated Press

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) – Supergirl came out of the changing room as usual.

She took her place next to Freddy Krueger, Poison Ivy and Captain America and they started singing.

This idiosyncratic line-up is a typical type of line-up for the Carnival Street band Desliga de Justica, but this year they were in a studio in front of cameras and fans were scattered across the internet instead of dancing in the street during one of the world’s most famous celebrations .

“Everyone at home, move the furniture out of the way to dance and have cold beers,” shouted the woman, dressed as poison ivy, who started the show with a traditional carnival song.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced Rio to close its famous festival and threaten legal action against those who oppose the party ban. Groups like Desliga – the name is a Portuguese-language piece in the Justice League – are turning to online events for their supporters, streaming music and dances via YouTube and other social media platforms.

This year all members of the band were doing a PCR test for coronavirus on Sunday when they arrived at the studio in south Rio.

Desliga has been hosting the parties since 2009 and the gatherings have grown since then.

“When everyone is vaccinated, we will have the biggest carnival Brazil has ever seen. Wait until 2022, “said Supergirl, aka Carla de Freitas, 38.” We want everyone to be healthy and protected so that we can have fun in peace. “

Roseville restricts Airbnb-style leases after complaints over events

After longstanding complaints from local residents about so-called “party houses”, the city of Roseville has taken steps to regulate short-term rentals such as those arranged through sites like Airbnb and VRBO.

The city council met on Monday and agreed to impose a number of restrictions on non-owner short-term rentals following complaints about overnight or weekend party parties.

Under the new rules, passed 5-0, owners who rent out their properties for short-term stays are now required to obtain a license and pay the city’s housing tax. The minimum stay in houses where the owner is not present will be 10 days from May to September and seven days between October and April.

The new rules also include penalties for violations of noise, parking and antisocial behavior, with homeowners potentially being required to suspend their short-term rental licenses if there are two violations within 180 days.

The meeting was heard by several local residents affected by short-term rentals, many of whom lived on McCarrons Lake, and they called for either longer minimum stays – possibly 14 days – or the elimination of short-term rentals altogether.

One of those homeowners, Frank Hess, said of the meeting: “It’s really difficult to live next to one of these, and I don’t think you can understand how bad it is [living next to one]having new neighbors all the time and making our area almost a resort. “

Opposition to the restrictions came from Simon Opatz of the St. Paul Area Realtors Association, who said the problems in Roseville stem from a small number of homes and that he disagreed that “a few problematic properties are punishing.” Justify homeowners. ” Operation of short-term rentals without complaints. “

“Allowing weekend rentals will give your city an economic boost,” he said. “Roseville is in the best position to benefit from the spillage of events in the twin cities.”

However, another homeowner, Renee Pardello, said if Roseville really wanted to be a tourist destination like Brainerd or Duluth, she should come up with a formal plan to make it happen.

The council eventually agreed to a compromise that would not completely satisfy either side, imposing restrictions on non-owner-occupied short-term rentals, but not to the extent requested by locals complaining about “party houses”.

“A number of people wanted us to ban them all together,” said Councilor Julie Strahan, adding, “I think we have more power when we allow them and have regulation around them.”

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