Stirling Politicians Welcome 2022 Progress
Stirling MSP Evelyn Tweed and MP Alyn Smith have welcomed this week’s announcement from First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, in relation to Scotland’s fight against the Covid-19 virus.
In an update to the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday, the First Minister highlighted encouraging reasons for optimism at present, with Covid-19 case figures in Scotland falling in recent days. To reflect changing circumstances, public health protections have been updated to continue striking a balance between public safety and the reduction of restrictions to daily life.
Monday 17th January saw the limit on attendance at outdoor public events lifted; all remaining statutory measures are set to be lifted from Monday 24th January, which are:
- Limits on attendance at indoor public events
- The requirement for 1 metre physical distancing between different groups in indoor public places
- The requirement for table service in hospitality premises serving alcohol on the premises
- The closure of nightclubs.
Guidance advising adults against non-professional indoor contact sports will also be removed, as will guidance around sticking to a limit of 3 households for indoor gatherings. However, given levels of Covid infection in the community remains high, caution is still advised.
Measures to be retained include:
- The wearing of face coverings in public indoor settings and on public transport
- The collection of customer details by hospitality for Test & Protect
- The Covid certification scheme for large indoor and outdoor events and late-night venues (no extension to other premises at this stage)
- Continuing to ask people to work from home whenever possible at this stage, with plans to engage with businesses over a return to a more hybrid approach from the start of February
- Clarification around the definition of dancefloors to prevent premises avoiding covid certification.
Alyn Smith MP said:
‘This is a positive and welcome development, and testament to communities across Scotland following the rules and guidance over the festive period. Thankfully we’re now seeing a fall in the numbers of daily positive Covid cases, yet we shouldn’t take things for granted either. This remains a highly infectious virus and whilst some protections have been lifted, others remain in place to minimise risk and help keep people safe.
‘Scotland’s vaccination and booster efforts continue to make steady progress, and I’d encourage anyone who hasn’t already to get protected. This virus is no joke; it can and does make people of all age groups and backgrounds seriously ill. People should continue to take lateral flow tests before meeting others to help contain any positive cases, and be sure to wear face coverings in indoor public spaces and on public transport.
‘This has been a very long and trying time for so many across Stirling. My thoughts and thanks go out to everyone who has played their part in driving down infections and looking after us all, especially our frontline health and social care workers. We all owe you an immense debt.’
Evelyn Tweed MSP said:
‘People across our communities have been tirelessly committed to observing the guidance despite how difficult it has been living through a pandemic. The lifting of these restrictions will also be a massive relief to local businesses in Stirling who are desperately longing to start operating normally after a difficult festive period.
‘As ever we remain cautiously optimistic, of course we aren’t out of the woods yet with the pressure on our health services still very much a live and present concern. I thank everyone for their continued approach to keeping themselves and others safe. The situation we now find ourselves in is undoubtedly a result of the sacrifices everyone has made over these past few weeks, if we continue to work together then I am hopeful that we can begin to be positive about what lies ahead.’
Further information can be found here: https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-update-first-ministers-statement-18-january-2022/