AS THE country moves toward phase three of the gradual lifting of lockdown measures, indoor meetings with a limited number of people adhering to social distancing will be allowed again from tomorrow (Friday) onwards.
In a statement to parliament on Thursday first minister Nicola Sturgeon said the prevalence of the Covid-19 virus has been suppressed to a low level with an average of seven new cases every day. There were no Covid-19 deaths reported over the last 24 hours.
Sturgeon said the changes announced by her constitute the most significant – and therefore most risky – change in the gradual process of lockdown easing.
While pleased to be able to announce a range of measures, she reiterated that sticking to the general hygiene measures – washing hands regularly and thoroughly, keeping two-metre distance wherever possible – was more important than ever before.
As of Friday 10 July:
- A maximum of 15 people from no more than five households can meet outdoors;
- No more than eight people from three households (including the host household) can meet indoors;
- People who are shielding don’t need to stay distant from those in the same household any longer;
- Also, couples who don’t live together will not longer physically distance;
- Exemptions from the two metre physical distancing rule will be introduced where agreed with the government;
- The wearing of face masks in shops becomes mandatory.
As of Monday 13 July:
- Non-essential shops within retail shopping centres can reopen again;
- Eye-care and some dental treatment for registered patients can resume but not aerosol based treatment,
- Organised outdoor contact sports, play and physical activity can also resume for children and young people under 18.
On Wednesday 15 July:
- Indoor restaurants can re-open as can holiday accommodation;
- Childcare and hairdressers can reopen their businesses;
- Places of worship can re-open for congregational services
- Museums, galleries, libraries and cinemas are allowed to re-open again with safety measures in place.
A spokesperson for Shetland Arts said the agency had been aware of the possible changes with regards to re-opening cinemas but decided to stick their own phased opening programme as published earlier this week with Mareel’s cinemas set to open again on 31 August.
An overview of what scaling up phase three means for various sectors can be found in the graphic below.
A more detailed update has just been published by the Scottish Government on its website.
Become a supporter of Shetland News
Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.
Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.
Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has over 400 supporters who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.
Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -
- Bring you the headlines as they happen;
- Stay editorially independent;
- Give a voice to the community;
- Grow site traffic further;
- Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.
If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.
Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.Support Shetland News