Abled.ALERT: C19 Global briefings. Image: Photo of U.S. President Donald Trump leading the Coronavirus Task Force Briefing at the White House.

Briefings & Interviews

In this section, we have compiled a hub of government COVID-19 briefings from English-speaking countries, so that you can have a convenient world view of the evolution of the pandemic and geographic responses to it.

On days when a government press conference hasn’t taken place, we present interviews with relevant government officials or an overview from national media outlets where a summary of the latest COVID-19 updates are available.

United States

POTUS July 30

President Trump Roundtable Discussion on Donating Plasma

President Donald Trump participated in a roundtable discussion on plasma donations at the American Red Cross Headquarters.

The president and members of the White House Coronavirus Task Force encouraged people who have recovered from COVID-19 to donate plasma and discussed the efficacy of its use in treatment.

Participants also discussed progress being made on a vaccine and the importance of increasing turn-around time for tests.

U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams complimented the president saying, “you look bad ass in a face mask.”

This video is via C-Span.



POTUS July 29

President Trump White House Departure

President Trump spoke to reporters for about 15 minutes as he left the White Housej for a trip to Texas.

Topics included the COVID-19 pandemic, the GOP stimulus proposals, the Federal response to demonstrations in Portland, and U.S. troop withdrawal from Germany.

This video is via C-SPAN.



VP July 21

Vice President Pence Holds Coronavirus News Conference in South Carolina

Vice President Mike Pence and Gov. Henry McMaster (R-SC) held a press conference from the University of South Carolina in Columbia on reopening schools in the Fall.

Despite the increased positive cases of the coronavirus in the South, they said that it is vital to reopen schools to ensure the educational and mental health of students, as well as providing essential services to students, such as meals and counseling.

Also joining the vice president were Education Secretary Betsy Devos and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma.

This video is via C-SPAN.



Senate July 30

Senate Begins Work on Extending Pandemic Jobless Benefits

The Senate voted, 47-42, to officially begin extending emergency unemployment benefits during the coronavirus pandemic.

Republicans led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) have proposed reducing the amount of the weekly check from $600 to $200.

Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said that amount is too low.

This video is via C-Span.



Senate July 30 Pt. 2

Democratic Coronavirus Response Bills Blocked

U.S. senators debated the Republican plan to reduce emergency unemployment benefits allowed under the first coronavirus response package.

The $600 weekly payments end as of August 1.

The Senate Republican plan lowers it to $200. Senate Financial Committee Chair Ron Johnson (R-WI) started the debate.

Also speaking were Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR), Agriculture Committee Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), and Banking and Housing Committee Ranking Member Sherrod Brown (D-OH).

Efforts to bring up Democratic coronavirus response bills were blocked.

This video is via C-SPAN.



Pentagon July 30

Defense Department Briefing on Coronavirus Testing

Defense Department Spokesman Jonathan Hoffman, Air Force Major General Lee Payne, and Air Force Brigadier General Paul Friedrichs brief reporters at the Pentagon on coronavirus testing.

This video is via C-Span.



John Lewis July 30

Representative John Lewis Funeral Service

Family, friends and colleagues paid tribute to civil rights leader Rep. John Lewis (D-GA in Atlanta, including  former Presidents George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama.

The presidents remembered the life and legacy of Rep. Lewis and shared personal stories.

President Obama hailed Rep. Lewis as a “founding father” of a “fuller, fairer, better America.” He also called for revitalization of the Voting Rights Act, increased voter turnout, and eliminating the filibuster, saying it’s, “a Jim Crow relic.”

This video is via C-SPAN.



HOR July 30

CFPB Director Kathleen Kraninger Testifies on Protecting Consumers During Pandemic

Kathleen Kraninger, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), testifies on what the agency is doing to protect consumers during the coronavirus pandemic.

This video is via C-SPAN.



Biden July 28

Joe Biden Remarks in Wilmington, Delaware on the Economy

Joe Biden, the presumptive 2020 Democratic presidential nominee, delivered remarks on his “Build Back Better” plan on advanced racial equity in America’s economy, including the role of the Federal Reserve and the need to consider representation internally.

Mr. Biden talked about his commitment to fight systemic racism through his economic plan.

Also, he answered questions from reporters including the timing on naming his vice presidential nominee and the reopening of schools and sports during the coronavirus pandemic.

This video is via C-SPAN.



Congress July 30

Capitol Hill Roundup from CBSN

President Trump and his top health officials on Thursday spoke about the importance of plasma donation from people who have antibodies, as the number of coronavirus deaths tops 150,000 in the U.S.

Meantime, negotiations are stalled over the next relief package, with unemployment benefits set to expire Friday.

CBS News‘ Skyler Henry joins CBSN’s Elaine Quijano to discuss.



VP July 24

During a discussion at Marian University, Vice President Mike Pence and other officials talked about the reopening of schools.

This video is via FOX59 WXIN-TV in Indianapolis, Indiana



Biden July 23

A Socially Distanced Conversation: President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden

This video is from the Joe Biden campaign.



Dr. Fauci July 30

Anthony Fauci has advised six U.S. presidents as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

During a Town Hall appearance on CNN, Dr. Fauci gives his take on if there is a need to lock down the US again to help fight the spread of Covid-19.



NY July 28

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) delivers Remarks on Launch of $765 Million Kodak Pharmaceuticals Project



CA July 27

California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) on Monday announced that more funds and support will be sent to the Central Valley, an area that has been particularly hit hard by the novel coronavirus.

This video is via KTLA in Los Angeles.



AZ July 30

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey (R), Arizona Department of Health Services Director Dr. Cara Christ, and Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs Director Major General Michael T. McGuire hold a briefing to provide updates on COVID-19 and public health in the state.



FL July 28

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) held a roundtable on the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This video is via Yahoo Finance.



TX July 24

 Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) joins CNBC’s “Squawk Box” to discuss the challenges stemming from the surge of Covid-19 cases in the state.

Texas was one of the first states to largely reopen its economy toward the beginning of May, allowing in-store retail services, dine-in restaurant services, movie theaters, shopping malls, museums and libraries to return with limited capacity.

The state’s bars and gyms were later allowed to reopen with capacity limitations.

However, Abbott rolled back some of the reopenings on June 26 after coronavirus cases in Texas climbed to record highs for weeks.

The Lone Star governor issued a state-wide mask mandate on July 2 requiring residents across the state to wear a face-covering in public spaces in counties with 20 or more positive cases after requests from several Texas mayors.

Abbott said on Friday that the mask mandate “polls overwhelmingly,” noting that 85% of Texans agree that face masks can prevent businesses from shuttering.

This video is from CNBC.


United Kingdom

UK July 30

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson says the coronavirus is now under some measure of control in the UK, but that a resurgence in some European countries shows that the pandemic is not over.

Mr. Johnson made the comments after being asked whether he was ashamed England had the highest number of excess deaths in Europe during the first wave of the global coronavirus outbreak.

This video is from The Guardian.



UK July 24

U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson admitted the government didn’t understand coronavirus in the “first few weeks and months” of the outbreak, acknowledging there were things it “could have done differently” in its handling of the virus.

The prime minister speaks to the BBC’s political editor, Laura Kuenssberg, about the coronavirus outbreak.


This video is from BBC News.



UK July 23

Making masks mandatory in shops is “the right thing to do,” Britain’s prime minister said Thursday, a day before new rules were set to come into force in England.

The decision to make face coverings obligatory in stores came last week, after weeks of prevarication and days of confused messaging.

Those who flout the law can be fined up to 100 pounds (125 US dollars) by the police under public health laws.

Many European nations, including Germany, Spain, Italy and Greece, already require masks to be worn in enclosed spaces, but Britain has only made masks obligatory on public transit.

Mr. Johnson’s government until now recommended – but did not require – mask-wearing in stores. The new requirement only applies to England. Scotland had already made masks mandatory in stores.

This video is from Bloomberg QuickTake News.




Canada July 28

At a news conference on Parliament Hill, In Ottawa, Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief public health officer, provides an update on the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

This video is via CPAC.



Canada July 24

In Ottawa, Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief public health officer, and Dr. Howard Njoo, deputy chief public health officer, join federal ministers to provide an update on the ongoing COVID-19 (coronavirus disease) pandemic.

This video is via CPAC.



Canada July 24

At a news conference in Ottawa, federal ministers Ahmed Hussen (families, children, and social development) and Mona Fortier (middle class prosperity) announce $625 million in funding for the Canadian child-care sector to support parents’ return to work amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The ministers then take questions from reporters on topics including the ongoing controversy surrounding the federal government’s now-cancelled contract with WE Charity and reports of a toxic work environment at Rideau Hall under Governor General Julie Payette.

This video is via CPAC.



Australia | New Zealand

Australia July 31

In Australia, Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews held crisis talks overnight, before an organised briefing between all state leaders today.

This video is from 9News Australia.


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Australia July 31

In Australia, the Victorian premier has expressed his dismay after it was revealed that one in four people diagnosed with COVID-19 were not at home when the Australian Defence Force came knocking, with 100 people referred to Victoria Police.

Thousands of Brisbane residents have turned out for testing after two Brisbane women, who failed to quarantine after a trip to Victoria, tested positive for coronavirus; and businesses across Sydney are closing for deep cleans as clusters spread.

This video is from 7News Australia.



New Zealand July 30

The New Zealand Ministry of Health provides an update on the COVID-19 response in the country.

The briefing is led by the country’s Director-General of Health, Dr Ashley Bloomfield.




WHO July 30

Broadcast on 30th July 2020, direct from the headquarters of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva Switzerland.

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said spikes in the number of new COVID-19 cases in some countries were driven partly by young people letting down their guard, but that the world needs to learn to live with the disease.



EC July 30

European Commission Press Briefing

Chair: Dana Spinant, Deputy Chief Spokesperson of the European Commission


European Council agrees on €750 billion virus recovery fund

EU leaders emerged at long-last from a marathon four-day and four-night summit with what they boasted was a historic rescue plan for EU economies left devastated by the COVID-19 epidemic.

The €750 billion deal was sealed after intense negotiation that saw a threats of a French walkout and a Hungarian veto – and fierce opposition from the Netherlands and Austria to what they perceived as too generous a package.



The ‘Global Goal: Unite for our Future’ pledging summit organized by the European Commission and Global Citizen mobilised €6.15 billion in additional funding to help develop and ensure equitable access to coronavirus vaccines, tests and treatments. The money raised will also support economic recovery in the world’s most fragile regions and communities.

This amount includes a €4.9 billion pledge by the European Investment Bank, in partnership with the European Commission, and €485 million committed by EU Member States. This brings total pledges under the Coronavirus Global Response pledging marathon, launched by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on 4 May, to €15.9 billion.

Out of the €15.9 billion raised since 4 May, €11.9 billion was pledged by the Member States, the Commission and the European Investment Bank. Out of these €11.9 billion, €6.5 billion was raised between 4 May and 28 May.


South Africa July31

South Africa Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu has reiterated that COVID-19 has exposed the country’s socio-economic lapses.

She was delivering an executive statement on the impact of coronavirus and her department’s efforts to mitigate its impact on society.

This video is from SABC News .



EC & Global Citizen June 27

Hosted by Dwayne Johnson, join us for performances by Shakira, Coldplay, Usher, Jennifer Hudson, Justin Bieber and Quavo, Miley Cyrus, Chloe x Halle, J Balvin, Yemi Alade, Christine and the Queen, and more as we celebrate our campaign to get funding for the development and equitable distribution of COVID-19 therapeutics, tests and vaccines for everyone, everywhere.

Global Citizen is a social action platform for a global generation that aims to solve the world’s biggest challenges. On our platform, you can learn about issues, take action on what matters most, and join a community committed to social change. We believe we can end extreme poverty because of the collective actions of Global Citizens across the world. Register to become a Global Citizen and start taking action today:




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Descriptive Audio Podcasts

We’ve produced companion podcasts for the Abled.ALERT COVID-19 Briefings that are a descriptive audio track for blind and low vision users.

You’ll find them below the link image for the downloadable briefings.

We hope you find them informative and valuable for making personal health choices during the pandemic.

They are meant for informational use only and should not be considered a substitute for advice from your personal doctor or other health professionals.

Because of COVID-19 circumstances, we are operating at reduced capacity, and have had to delay production of more current briefings, but hope to catch-up shortly.


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