Lunchtime News Monday 21st September 2020

Local 

Residents demonstrate against installation of a antenna - A hundred residents in Saint-Roman de Bellet in Nice have demonstrated against the installation of a telephone relay antenna in their neighbourhood.

The project began on private land back in June and residents have aired thier concern after not being informed of the installation. Resdients have requested to the mayor of Nice, Christian Estrosi, that the project be suspended.

The antenna is located in front of a school and in the middle of houses and residents fear the risk of toxicity as well as an alteration of the landscape which could lead to a decrease in the value of real estate in the area. 

Heavy rainfall - Two people have been rescued by firefighters after heavy rainfall hit the region on Sunday afternoon. Emergency services intervened after the couple found themselves trapped in their vehicle as rainwater flooded the mini tunnel leading to the port of Saint-Laurent. Access was closed to the tunnel on Sunday afternoon due to flooding.

Meanwhile emergency services in the Var carried out thirty interventions at the weekend due to the bad weather. In Toulon two people were injured after a tree fell on the terrace of a beach restaurant.

58-year-old hiker found by rescue services - A 58-year-old woman has been found by mountain rescue services after disappearing for several hours on Sunday. Rescue services in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence were alerted on Sunday afternoon. The woman who had suffered serious leg injuries while hiking in the region was air lifted to the local hospital.

Dengue Fever - Three new cases of Dengue Fever have been confirmed in Nice, bringing the total number of people affected to five. All the cases are in one particular neighbourhood at the bottom of avenue de Pessicart. The disease is spread by the tiger mosquito. The Regional Health Agency said that mosquito control operations are continuing in the neighbourhood and in other areas of Nice.

National

Covid-19 - According to Public Health France more than 10,500 new cases of Covid-19 have been diagnosed in France in the past 24 hours, and 12 people have died with the test positivity rate increasing slightly to 5.7% compared to 5.6% the day before. Sunday’s figures saw the number of clusters currently under investigation in France stand at 1,045.

3,894 people have been hospitalized in France over the last seven days, and 593 patients were admitted to intensive care in a serious condition over the same period.

In total, 31,585 people have died since the start of the epidemic in France, including 20,725 in hospitals; and 89 departments are now in a situation of moderate or high vulnerability.

French President Emmanuel Macron - An online survey has shown that the popularity of French President Emmanuel Macron has increased slightly up from 36 to 38%. Meanwhile France’s Prime Minister Jean Castex saw a drop from 48 to 45% in popularity.

Motorcyclists in Paris - Motorcyclists in Paris are no longer obliged to wear a mask under their helmets due to Covid-19.

Several biker organizations had denounced on September 1st in a joint statement a "decision as absurd as dangerous" and called for an alignment of their situation with that of cyclists.

Rules for contact cases of Covid-19 to be relaxed - The rules concerning contact cases for pupils with Covid-19 are to be relaxed in nursery and primary schools in France.

Following an announcement from the Ministry of Education on Sunday when a child tests positive, the class will be able to "continue as normal and will no longer be considered as contact cases”.

Until now, if a student was considered a "contact case", they could only return to school if a test, carried out seven days after the last contact with the confirmed case, was negative.

The protocol for identifying people with contact cases, possible isolation and the possible closure of classes, or even schools, will from Tuesday, only be applied when there are at least three confirmed cases in the same class.

Protests – Thousands of demonstrators have gathered across France for union-organised protests against job cuts due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Bridgestone announced plans to close a factory in northern France, a decision that puts more than 800 jobs at risk and there have been thousands of job cuts in multiple French companies including Airbus, Renault and Sanofi due to economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Unions say that Auchan, a supermarket chain, recently announced plans to cut nearly 1500 jobs despite being open for the duration of France's strict lockdown. 

France's national statistics institute has said the unemployment level will likely climb to 9.5% by the end of 2020.

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