Society Hundreds of babies have been born addicted to drugs in Scotland. In the past three years, 584 babies – around four each week – were born suffering from neo-natal abstinence syndrome, with symptoms ranging from extreme trembling and high-pitched crying, to hyperactivity. Source: Scottish Liberal Democrats.
An average of 137 women in the world are killed by a partner or family member every day, and ‘home’ is ‘the most likely place for a woman to be killed.’ In 2017, 87,000 women were killed, with 30,000 by an intimate partner and 20,000 by a relative. Source: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.
20% of Brits have an unfavourable opinion of people who fly national flags at their home. Source: YouGov.
On-shelf labels which remind shoppers of items needed by food banks are to be introduced in all Sainsbury’s stores following a trial which resulted in donations tripling. Such products include tinned meat, fruit, vegetable and fish. Source: Sainsbury’s.
Dog owners in the UK spend £12bn on their dogs each year. This Christmas they are expected to spend £166m – around £18.24 per dog – on treats and gifts. Source: American Express.
Five individuals called the Metropolitan Police 8,655 times in 2017 – costing £70,000 to answer. All suffered from mental health problems. Source: Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Service.
Economy On Black Friday, UK shoppers bought more items but spent less. By 3pm, although transactions had increased by 10%, the value of spending was down 12% on last year. Source: Barclaycard.
63% of potential first-time buyers plan to sell valuables in order to boost their deposit fund for a property. 14% expect to raise more than half of the funds in this way. Source: Nottingham Building Society.
In the financial year up to September 2017, the profitability of the UK’s top 100 hotel groups had risen by 13% from £609m to £689m. The hotels are thought to have benefitted from the continued drop in the value of sterling that has led to more overseas tourists visiting the UK. Source: Moore Stephens.
Education The number of boys being treated in hospital for eating disorders is at a record high. In 2010, 235 boys in England, Scotland and Wales, were treated in hospital. This year, the number has risen to 466. Source: NHS Digital.
Less than half of tuition fees paid by students in England are spent on teaching – the remainder spent on buildings, IT, libraries, administration and welfare. Source: Higher Education Policy Institute.
Science If the world continues to increase carbon dioxide emissions, rather than reducing them as most governments intend, summer temperatures in the UK could increase by 5.4C by 2070. Source: Met Office.
Nasa’s InSight lander is the first probe to dedicate its investigations to understanding the interior of Mars. It will assist scientists to understand how the planet is constructed – from its core to its crust. Source: Nasa.
Global textile production produces 1.2bn tonnes of carbon emissions each year – more than that of international flights and maritime shipping. Source: Enviro Audit Committee.
Researchers have found that tossing the carcasses of salmon from a stream on to a river bank has boosted tree growth on the river bank by 20% over the past 20 years. Source: University of Washington.
Health A junk food advertising ban, which will be introduced next year across London’s public transport network, ‘will have little impact on the wider societal issues that drive obesity.’ Source: Advertising Association.
7,000 people under the age of 25 in the UK are being treated for type 2 diabetes – some 10 times more than previously thought. Source: Diabetes UK.
Care home providers should enable their elderly residents to have a sex life by providing private areas with double beds and ‘do not disturb’ signs. Source: Royal College of Nursing.
Shoulder pain caused by exercise can be treated with pineapple. The fruit contains proteolytic enzymes which can reduce inflammation and swelling. Source: Daily Mail.
Recreation 32% of Brits think that the Christmas 'season' should begin on 1 December, while 3% think it should start in early November. 2% think it should never start. Source: YouGov.
Oddities A memo sent to to lecturers at a UK university journalism department suggested that they should stop using capital letters when assigning work to students as they may 'scare them into failure.' The memo also suggested that lecturers write to their students in a friendly tone, avoiding overbearing and negative language. Source: Leeds Trinity University.