By Alexandra Meeks, CNN
(CNN) — Zoom became a household name during the pandemic for powering the remote work revolution. Now, in an ironic plot twist, the video-conferencing company wants its employees back in the office because it’s “most effective” for its business.
Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.
A powerful storm system whipping the East Coast has killed two people and left nearly 400,000 homes and businesses without power as of early today. Images show the destruction caused by fierce winds that collapsed buildings, toppled power lines, and scattered debris across several states. More than 9,000 flights were impacted by the storms Monday after the FAA reported it was slowing air traffic headed toward New York, Philadelphia and Washington, DC, area airports. Although that round of severe weather tapered off, new threats are developing in the Plains and the Southeast, with more than 5 million people facing at least a slight risk for damaging winds and heavy rainfall today, according to the Storm Prediction Center.
Do you know how to stay safe during dangerous weather events? Only 2% of readers who took CNN’s Extreme Weather Quiz got a perfect score.
Ukrainian officials say they foiled an alleged assassination plot against President Volodymyr Zelensky as the Ukrainian leader remains a key target for Russia. An alleged Russian informant has been detained after she had been “gathering intelligence” about Zelensky’s planned visit to Ukraine’s Mykolaiv region at the end of July in order to plan a Russian airstrike to kill the president, the Ukrainian Security Service said Monday. According to the investigation, the unnamed woman was a resident of the region and a former saleswoman in a military store. Meanwhile, emergency workers are responding to the site of a deadly Russian airstrike that hit a residential building in the eastern city of Pokrovsk today which killed at least seven people and injured dozens of others.
3. GOP primary
Former Vice President Mike Pence has reached the donor threshold to qualify for the first Republican presidential debate later this month in Milwaukee. This could set up a potential face-off with his former boss Donald Trump, should the former president commit to participating. Trump, the current front-runner who was federally indicted in the special counsel’s 2020 election interference probe last week, has yet to announce whether he will debate on August 23. As CNN has reported, seven other candidates have met the polling threshold and met the fundraising requirements for the August debate. They are all attempting to make a dent in Trump’s lead as he contends with mounting legal troubles and a fourth potential indictment.
More than 11,000 Los Angeles city workers plan to strike today for the first time in more than 40 years. Shuttle drivers at Los Angeles International Airport, trash truck operators and port boat captains are among the workers planning to strike for 24 hours. According to the union that represents many of the city’s public-sector staff, employees feel stretched thin and overworked amid hundreds of job vacancies in the city. Los Angeles is also the epicenter of the Hollywood actors’ and writers’ strikes that have brought most entertainment productions to a standstill, and the union representing 15,000 hotel workers that has staged rolling strikes in the city since the start of July.
5. Boat dock brawl
Alabama police have issued four arrest warrants for individuals involved in a large brawl on a boat dock that has captivated the internet. Videos of the incident show a Black dock employee engaging with a group of White boaters on the dock, who then get physical and start hitting him. Footage of the chaotic fight went viral online as it escalated with punches being thrown, people being hit with chairs and at least one person being tossed into the water. “Those who choose violence will be held accountable by our criminal justice system,” Montgomery Mayor Steven Reed said in a statement. The Montgomery Police Department’s chief along with the city’s mayor plan to hold a news conference later today to offer more information on the incident.
Biden to designate new national monument surrounding Grand Canyon
President Joe Biden later today is set to designate the fifth national monument of his presidency and unveil new climate resilience funding for national parks during a visit to lands surrounding one of the seven natural wonders of the world, the Grand Canyon. The monument’s designation makes good on longtime calls from tribal leaders and environmental activists, as well as Arizona lawmakers, who have advocated for the lands surrounding the Grand Canyon to be protected.
Mega Millions jackpot soars to potential record
The gargantuan $1.5 billion Mega Millions drawing today could bring the largest jackpot in the lottery’s history.
Mattel announces limited-edition ‘Weird Barbie’ doll for sale
The limited-edition toy has markings on her face and oddly cut hair “to emulate a doll that’s been played with just a little too much,” Mattel said.
2023 Women’s World Cup: Final day of knockout stage
Four teams are fighting for the two remaining spots in the Women’s World Cup quarterfinals today. Follow live updates on Colombia vs Jamaica and France vs Morocco.
Educators are using TikTok to teach history you might not learn in school
Scholars and teachers are increasingly using TikTok to share history that’s seldom found in textbooks — and their educational content is seeing an enthusiastic response.
Beyond Meat earnings drop 30% with falling demand
Are consumers losing their appetite for plant-based meat? Learn how inflation and growing competition are affecting alternative meat companies.
William Friedkin, director of iconic 1970s films including “The French Connection” and “The Exorcist,” has died, his wife Sherry Lansing, the former CEO of Paramount Pictures, told The Hollywood Reporter on Monday. He was 87.
That’s how many people have been arrested across the US and Australia over their alleged involvement in an international pedophile ring, federal authorities said today. The alleged members who committed crimes against children communicated on an encrypted network where they anonymously shared files and chatted on message boards for several years. This comes after two FBI agents were killed in 2021 while investigating the case, CNN previously reported.
“We want to protect your private information and prevent any unauthorized access to your account.”
— Google, confirming in a statement Monday that the company is moving forward with its plan to delete accounts that have been inactive for at least two years. Google said it will send multiple warning notifications to impacted accounts and their backup emails before deletions begin on December 1.
The science behind ice baths
Celebrities, athletes and influencers praise the health benefits of plunging into ice-cold water. Watch this short video to learn how the body reacts during a cold plunge and whether you should consider trying it yourself.
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