“Let me emphasise at the outset that the lockdown in Scotland remains in place.” Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland
Today, 10th of May, the message to Scotland remained a clear ‘Stay At Home‘.
The advice from the Scottish Government was only to leave home for shopping, medicines or if you are unable to work from home. If you are out shopping you have been asked to wear a face covering/mask.
There has been a change in the number of times you can go out for exercise. Whilst maintaining physical distancing you can go out more than once for exercise. This should, however, take place near your home. This is to support the mental and physical well being of people. Outside activities for example picnics, barbecues and sunbathing are not permitted.
Wales and Northern Ireland will also be sending out this same message although it appears likely that the message for England, presented by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, will diverge from the other nations of the UK.
The First Minister of Scotland, however, maintained that despite the different messaging for England compared to Scotland, Wales and N Ireland, that Scotland will continue to be part of the 4 nation strategy which it has followed from the start.
People in Scotland continue to be confirmed with having Covid19 and sadly many are still dying.
Statistics from the 3 Islands Authorities have not changed for some time with Shetland 54, Eileanan Siar (Western Isles) 6 , and Orkney 7.
A group of residents in Orkney have put forward their own submission to the Scottish Government’s discussion on the Coronavirus (COVID-19): framework for decision making – further information
You can read about their ideas here: Orkney Residents Respond to #Covid19 Discussion Paper
Citizens were encouraged to take part in the discussion and to put forward comments and ideas. The deadline for those is Monday 11th of May at 10pm. Click on this link to do so: Coronavirus (COVID-19): framework for decision making
Testing in Scotland is still well below capacity with both NHS Labs, Drive Throughs and army mobile units conducting tests.
Giving evidence last week to the Scottish Parliament’s Covid19 Committee, Professor Harry Burns, raised the issue of the questionable quality of some of the testing taking place. Both Harry Burns and Professor Linda Bauld, who also gave evidence, stressed the importance of contact tracing. Transition And Easing Out Of Lockdown In Scotland: Experts Speak To The Covid19 Committee
The Health Minister, Jeane Freeman, revealed today that Scotland will start to advertise for contact tracers on Monday, 11th of May. Those recruited will be added to the existing staff in local health board areas.
Observing the lockdown has been incredibly hard for individuals, especially for those unable to visit their relatives in Care Homes and even more so for those who have been unable to be with their loved ones in their final hours. To hold their hand for one last time.
Communities too have suffered and the Scottish Government set up a fund to support local groups – Supporting Communities Fund
In Orkney the following were successful in their applications:
- The Island of Hoy Development Trust £12,500
- The North Ronaldsay Trust £6,089
- The Papay Development Trust £5,000
- Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre Development Trust £22,069
- Sanday Development Trust £23,650
- Shapinsay Development Trust £39,224
- Stronsay Development Trust £19,776
- Voluntary Action Orkney (TSI) £48,245
You can access the full list for across Scotland here: Supporting Communities Fund Approved Applications 6 May
This funding goes directly to the community groups listed who know best what is needed where they live and includes money for: making hot meals, organising grocery and prescription deliveries and providing wellbeing support.
In her statement today, the First Minister of Scotland, remained firm in her message of continuing to observe the lockdown, physical distancing and personal hygiene.
“Let me emphasise at the outset that the lockdown in Scotland remains in place.”
Nicola Sturgeon was quite blunt in what the consequences would be if there was to be an easing up in Scotland as there appears to be happening in England.
“People will die unnecessarily and, instead of being able to loosen restrictions hopefully in the near future, we will be faced instead with having to tighten them.”
This evening,10th May, Boris Johnson will make his statement on the lockdown in England and on UK border control. Later this week the Scottish Government will be considering whether some places like garden centres in Scotland will be able to re open.
Reporter: Fiona Grahame