News digest 8 August 2014

News digest 8 August 2014

08 August 2014

Today’s digest opens with a shout out for hospitality workers who are demonstrating for a living wage across London demanding that while London’s hotels are among the most expensive in the world, their workers are paid a pittance. London may be home to the global super rich, but it continues to keep hospitality workers on poverty pay – from today that must change. In 2012 London’s Tory mayor Boris Johnson, promised a better deal for London’s hotel workers, but he has let them down badly when he let the industry off the hook. Unite’s Dave Turnbull said: “It is simply obscene that London’s hotel industry can become so wealthy on the hard graft and misery of its workforce. Tens of thousands of workers across the capital are struggling to piece together a living … [but] with the hotels charging a fortune for rooms and London an increasingly popular destination, this industry can well afford to give people the dignity of a ‘living wage’. We know it is affordable.” Find out more on the campaign, watch the video: London the greatest city - if you can afford it: and sign the petition:£8.80.

And from hospitality to hospitals and waiting lists and a number of papers report that the total of patients on hospital waiting lists has hit a six-year high, at some 3.2 million people, that is a rise of 700,000 since the coalition came to power smashing the pledge that they’d cut the deficit and not the NHS. Even worse, the health department has said that the target is expected to be missed over the coming months, and that is before the expected winter crisis as more hospitals and A&Es are closed across the country…

But if there’s a crisis in the NHS, then there is a tragedy unfolding in the Middle East, sadly it looks like the ceasefire in Gaza has broken down with some rockets having being fired from Palestinian territory, the questions is whether the Israeli army will reply with more disproportionate force, even worse is the situation unfolding in northern Iraq where a ‘humanitarian catastrophe’ is unfolding after Islamic militants sweep further into northern Iraq. The militants are overrunning Qaraqosh – Iraq’s largest Christian city – and occupying churches, tearing down crosses and destroying manuscripts. Some 200,000 refugees are on the move as Isis launches further attacks across the region with many papers reporting the US is apparently poised to order air strikes to stop the advance. All in all it does not look good.

Back in the UK and as the weekend approaches another round of new nobles has been announced sparking yet another cash-for-peerages row. Both Lib Dem and Tory donors are on their way to the Lords. 22 new peers will be added to the already packed house, with 12 new Tory peers, just three new Labour ones, six Liberal Democrats and one DUP member. One tycoon – Ranbir Singh Suri – is also expected to be on the list, oddly he and his jewel company have given the Tories over £300,000 since 2006. How convenient that he will now be able to claim £300 a day to lord it over us, more worrying prime minister David Cameron’s stuffing of the Lords looks like a plan to stop a Labour government reversing the coalition’s worst changes, there are already 319 coalition peers in the Lords against Labour’s 220, and these extra ones will entrench the undemocratic majority even further, democracy, don’t you just love it…

Edited by Mik Sabiers

  Daily Mirror

  Sun (no links all stories now behind paywall)

  • Top Tory donor in peerage row (p2)
  • Women set to earn less until 2070 (p2)
  • 100 MPs back Boris as leader (p6)
  • Cancer drug is rip off says NHS (p20)
  • Rate rise still too perilous (p57)



  Times (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Wars of religion (p1) [Iraq/Isis]
  • Tories line up another donor for Lords seat (p8)
  • Equal pay still 60 years off (p17)
  • Ukraine crisis halts eurozone recovery (p37)
  • Tesco shares at 10-year low (p40)
  • Defiant hotelier takes French leave (p43)
  • Etihad deal saves 10,000 Alitalia jobs (p43)




  FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Spectre of unrest stirs in Europe (p1)
  • Interest rates stay at record low (p2)
  • Universal credit will help ‘push down’ economic inactivity (p2)
  • No more bank bailouts cannot be an empty slogan – Sheila Bair (p11)
  • Lufthansa calls for better sharing of intelligence with airline sector (p15)

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