The October jobs report drops today, and everyone will be waiting to see if that big strike at General Motors put a dent in the economy.
Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)
1. Chicago teachers’ strike
The teachers’ strike in Chicago is officially over. School will be back in session today for more than 300,000 students and 25,000 teachers after 11 days of walkouts, picket lines and tense negotiations. Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Teachers Union reached an agreement that will ensure millions of dollars to reduce class sizes and bring more nurses and social workers onto campuses. The sides also agreed to add five days of classes to the end of the school year to make up for the time lost during the strike (the union wanted twice as many). The strike paralyzed the nation’s third-largest school system and threw a huge wrench into the plans of many student athletes and high schoolers who, if the strike had gone on longer, may have missed college application deadlines.
2. Keystone Pipeline
Part of the controversial Keystone Pipeline system that runs through North Dakota was shut down after about 383,000 gallons of oil was discovered to have leaked out into the environment. The spill was from the Keystone 1 Pipeline, which runs through the northeast part of the state, and it affected about 2,500 square yards of land, TC Energy said. The leak is exactly the kind of complication indigenous and environmental activists said could occur if the Keystone system expanded. The whole system stretches about 2,600 miles, from Alberta to Manitoba and then south to Texas. The Keystone XL pipeline that drew protests in 2016 and 2017 would begin in Alberta and extend to Steele City, Nebraska. TC Energy, which runs the pipeline, says it’s not sure how this latest leak started.
3. Hong Kong
A four-day meeting of Beijing’s top leaders ended with an ominous message for protest-stricken Hong Kong. An official communique from the event, headed by Chinese President Xi Jinping, said the Chinese government “must establish and improve the legal system and enforcement mechanism for safeguarding national security” in areas like Hong Kong. Chinese officials also said the government wants to change the way Hong Kong’s leader is “appointed and removed.” It isn’t clear how that would affect Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam, whose term runs until 2022. There are reports Beijing was considering a plan to replace Lam in 2020 because of dissatisfaction with her handling of the ongoing protests. The whole outcome of the meetings sends a clear message: Beijing is fed up with the unrest in Hong Kong and seems to be considering tougher actions if the situation persists.
4. UK politics
There’s a crisis brewing in the UK’s Parliament, and yes, it’s related to the Brexit debacle. Six female British lawmakers have quit this week, with some citing vicious abuse and intimidation as reasons for stepping down. In general, British politicians say they’ve received an unprecedented number of threatening messages since the UK’s vote to leave the European Union in 2016, and sexually and racially charged abuse has been routinely levied against female and minority MPs. There are also a number of senior male Conservative MPs who have recently stepped down, including Ken Clarke, the longest serving member of Parliament. The exodus comes at a critical time: A general election, just fast-tracked by Parliament in exchange for a better Brexit bill from Prime Minister Boris Johnson, is now six weeks away.
Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul Mahdi has agreed to resign after weeks of anti-government protests. But his resignation has one condition: A successor needs to be agreed upon before he leaves office. President Barham Salih said Abdul Mahdi wants a replacement chosen in order “to prevent a vacuum” in his absence. The protests, which have gripped parts of Iraq for the past month, were sparked by longstanding complaints over unemployment, government corruption and a lack of basic services, such as electricity and clean water. They were also particularly deadly. More than 200 protesters have been killed and thousands more injured.
McDonalds apologizes for ‘Sundae Bloody Sundae’ promotion
Seems appropriate to say it was in bad taste.
Marijuana found in man’s nose 18 years after he smuggled it into prison
That’s either a small amount of marijuana or a very large nasal cavity.
2 people were arrested for trying to smuggle live baby eels onto a plane
WARNING: The photo in this article is not cute. Baby eels are not cute. You definitely do not want them on your plane.
Vampire bats form close friendships and help each other, study says
How many US presidents have been impeached?
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“Yes, I’m stepping down, but I refuse to let this experience scare off other women who dare to take risks, who dare to step into this light, who dare to be powerful.”
Democratic Rep. Katie Hill, who resigned after admitting to an inappropriate relationship with a campaign staffer before she took office
That’s about how much a mattress salesman from Houston lost after betting on the Astros to win the World Series. They lost in Game 7 to the Washington Nationals.
A moment of zen … sorta
It’s Friday. It’s a new month. You absolutely deserve this emu being baffled by a sprinkler. (Click here to view.)