US Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch wrote in a majority opinion issued on Monday: “An employer who fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender defies the law.” Pictured: Rainbow flag flies in front of the US Supreme Court, 8 October 2019. Photo credit: GreteMiller / Shutterstock.com
Trump confirms troop cuts in Germany, more Brexit talks set for the summer, ex-Ebay staff arrested for harassment. Delano’s breakfast briefing for Tuesday.
Landmark LGBT ruling in America
The US Supreme Court ruled that LGBT workers are protected under federal law. Justices said the 1964 Civil Rights Act covered sexual orientation and gender identity, ruling against the Trump administration. Not all US states have passed LGBT workplace protection laws, so this is the first national legal standard. Sources: Associated Press, BBC, Financial Times, NPR, RTE and Washington Post.
Trump confirms US troop cuts in Germany
Donald Trump confirmed earlier reports that he would reduce the number of US troops permanently stationed in Germany by 9,000, to 25,000, because Berlin has not reached the Nato member goal of spending 2% of GDP on defence. Sources: AFP, BBC, Deutsche Welle and Reuters.
Brexit talks to continue this summer
EU and UK officials agreed that “new momentum was required” in stalled post-Brexit talks, with more intense negotiations set for July and August. Sources: Associated Press, Euractiv, Politico and Reuters.
DP calls for investment and solidarity at party congress
The government’s economic stimulus programme should keep unemployment low and thus avoid the need for tax rises, Corinne Cahen, the family minister and DP party president, argued at the DP’s first digital party congress. The party called for increased teleworking, including by cross-border workers. About 600 members attended the virtual meeting. Sources: RTL, Tageblatt and Wort.
First average speed radar section
Luxembourg’s first average speed radar system went into service, on the N11 arterial road between Waldhof and Gonderange. Sources: Mobility ministry and Radio 100,7.
Coronavirus treatment withdrawal
America’s Food and Drug Administration withdrew emergency authorisation to use hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine, two malaria drugs, to treat covid-19, after concluding they are unlikely to be effective and potentially pose risks to patients. Sources: CNBC, CNN, Deutsche Welle and Marketwatch.
Luxembourg covid-19 status
Only 2 of the 4,342 people tested for covid-19 in the 24 hours to Monday afternoon in Luxembourg were positive. The number of hospitalised patients was down from 16 to 13. The Rt_eff reproduction rate was up from 0.85 to 0.93 (but still below the benchmark of 1). Source: Health ministry.
Robert Goebbels, former economy minister and MEP (LSAP), resigned as chair of the Luxembourg’s freeport. The company’s CEO, Philippe Dauvergne, indicated he was considering his own move. Source: Paperjam.
Bouvier files $60m action over Singapore freeport deal
The Swiss art dealer and co-owner of Luxembourg’s freeport, Yves Bouvier, is suing a group of investors for backing out of a deal to buy Singapore’s freeport. The investors said there was no such agreement. Source: Bloomberg.
CFL posts higher profits for 2019
Turnover at Luxembourg’s national railway, the CFL, rose from €892.5m in 2018 to €910.5m in 2019, with profits rising from €7.8m to €17.8m. It warned that the covid-19 crisis could hit 2020 revenue by 15%. Sources: CFL and Paperjam.
The oil giant BP lowered its forecast oil price by a third and warned it could write down $17.5bn in oil and gas assets due to the coronavirus pandemic. Last week, BP announced 10,000 job cuts. Sources: BBC, CNBC, Financial Times and The Guardian.
Ex-Ebay employees accused of harassment
Six former Ebay executives were charged with cyberstalking after sending live cockroaches, a preserved pig foetus, pornography and other items to a couple that ran a newsletter critical of the company. The six have not yet appeared in court to enter pleas. Sources: Associated Press, CNBC, CNN and Financial Times.
The 93rd Academy Awards has been rescheduled from 28 February to 25 April 2021 as the coronavirus outbreak had delayed the release of several films. Sources: CNBC, CNN and Sky News.
Panda breaks out of enclosure at Danish zoo
Xing Er, a 7 year old giant panda, briefly escaped the newly built Panda House at Copenhagen Zoo and roamed the park before being captured. The zoo was closed at the time and no one was injured. Sources: Associated Press and Daily Mail.