The morning's top stories, rounded up for your convenience.
Article 50 Shades of Grey
Theresa May will be in Brussels today for the European Council summit, during which she will make a direct plea
to the EU27 for a three-month Article 50 extension.
Last night she delivered a speech
saying the British public are “tired of infighting and political games” and it was “high time” MPs made a decision on next steps.
Speaking from Downing Street, she called the delay a “matter of personal regret” and added she was not willing to extend Brexit beyond 30 June.
Yesterday European Council President Donald Tusk said he believed the EU27 would agree a short extension on the condition that the Commons approves May’s Brexit deal next week. However, there are reports
that French President Macron is taking a hard-line stance.
Earlier in the day the Prime Minister sent a letter to Tusk formally requesting an extension to Article 50.
Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn said May was "in complete denial about the scale of the crisis" facing the UK and was "unable to offer the leadership the country needs".
The IoD is referenced in this analysis
on what an Article 50 extension could mean for British firms and their contingency planning.
The UK’s shortage of GPs is expected to last for at least another decades, three think tanks have warned
A new report by The Nuffield Trust, King’s Fund and Health Foundation says the absence of qualified healthcare professionals has become a crucial problem facing the NHS. The NHS currently has 100,000 vacant positions in a workforce of over 1.2 million.
The think tanks suggest the lack of doctors means patients will have to be treated by pharmacists and physiotherapists instead.
The shortfall of nurses will also triple to 100,000 unless nearly £1 billion is spent on training and recruiting from overseas.
Richard Murray, chief executive of the King’s Fund, said attempts to hire GPs from abroad have been unsuccessful. He said “We are just not that competitive on pay and lifestyle. The numbers just haven’t come through but that isn’t for want of trying”.
Baroness Harding, chair of NHS Improvement, welcomed the report. She said “Our staff are our biggest asset and so it is vital we do more to retain, recruit and develop them”.