Sturgeon extends hospitality restrictions as Scotland heads for tiered system

Henrietta Strickland
October 22, 2020

Speaking at the Scottish Government's daily virus briefing, the First Minister said the measures introduced at the beginning of October and meant to last for two weeks will now continue until November 2.

Speaking earlier this afternoon (21 October), First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said that while there is "cautious optimism" the restrictions are having an effect, Scottish ministers had been advised that it would not be safe to lift measures on Monday (26 October) as originally planned.

'As part of that we will be considering, of course, whether there are parts of the country that need tougher restrictions than those in place in the central belt right now, or whether there are parts of the country that might be able to have less tough restrictions.

"By sticking to the new restrictions and either closing your business if you're in the central belt or operating it under restrictions if you're in the rest of the country, you're helping us to tackle Covid and helping us to stop it spreading so fast, and it's really important that we help you to do that".

Ms Sturgeon said she understands the extension of measures in Scotland is "harsh" financially and emotionally.

"Businesses in the hospitality sector and across the supply chain will be absolutely devastated that restrictions now look to be in place indefinitely", Liz Cameron, chief executive of the Scottish Chambers of Commerce, said.

A new tiered system of restrictions will come into force in Scotland on Monday November 2 if approved at Holyrood next week, the First Minister revealed today. The restriction against gathering in homes will also be extended by one week.

She added that "none of these decisions are being taken lightly" but that they were "all about saving lives and minimising the health damage of the virus".

© PA Wire/PA Images A woman walks past Scran cafe in Edinburgh's Cockburn Street after a range of new restrictions to combat the rise in coronavirus cases came into place in Scotland.

The Scottish Government, the First Minister said, will pursue "urgent discussions" with the Treasury to increase funding to allow support for businesses to be offered.

Further details of the level system will be published later this week, along with details of the further support businesses can expect "in the event of further restrictions".

"All businesses will receive proportionally the same level of support over the extension seven days for each day of closure as they did in the first 16 days of restrictions".

© 2020 SNS Group GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - OCTOBER 17: Police outside Celtic Park during a Scottish Premiership match between Celtic and Rangers at Celtic Park, on October 17, 2020, in Glasgow, Scotland.

Ms Sturgeon spoke as 28 more coronavirus-linked deaths were reported in the last 24 hours in Scotland, with 1,739 new positive tests.

Ms Sturgeon said flexibility will also be important in the framework, adding: 'It's important we get it as right as possible.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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