WITH Shetland placed firmly in level three of Covid-19 restrictions, the limited easing of measures announced by first minister Nicola Sturgeon on Tuesday afternoon do not apply to the isles.
As of Friday, up to four adults from two households, living on the Scottish mainland, are again able to socialise outdoors following good progress in suppressing the virus.
Outdoor socialising for up to six people from no more than two households has been possible in Shetland for many months.
Speaking in parliament on Tuesday, Sturgeon said infection rates were still higher “than what we want them to be” but thanks to lockdown measures and the ongoing vaccination programme there were ”strong grounds for hope” that life would become much easier in the near future.
“I expect that further, more substantial changes will be possible in the weeks ahead, and I will set out as much detail as I can about that in parliament next week,” she said.
“If the data allows us to relax more restrictions more quickly than we have previously indicated, we will not hesitate to do so.
“We all have a part to play in keeping case numbers down while the vaccinators do their work, children get back to school and we all take tentative but firm steps back to life as we once knew it, so please continue to stay within the rules and follow the FACTS advice.”
There were 466 new Covid-19 cases registered in Scotland during the last 24 hours; 614 people were in hospital, and 19 people sadly died. There were no new cases in Shetland.
“Even though we are heading in the right direction, we cannot afford to take out foot of the brakes too soon,” Sturgeon warned.
“We need to keep the virus under control if our hopes for a much more normal summer is not to suffer a setback.
“And if we continue to prioritise children’s education, as I believe we should and indeed we must, our scope to make further changes will be limited while we are still rolling out the vaccination.”
The first minister confirmed that almost 40 per cent of the Scottish population has received at least one dose of the Covid vaccine. In Shetland that figure is over 50 per cent, according to NHS Shetland.
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