Further changes to lockdown restrictions in Scotland have been announced today by the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
From Monday 29 June 2020 some indoor workplaces can re-open, including factories, labs and warehouses, subject to strict physical distancing, hygiene and health and safety guidance, but non-essential offices and call centres should remain closed.
All retail premises with outdoor entrances and exits can also re-open from 29 June.
Ahead of that date local authorities and retailers are urged to plan for the responsible use of public space, such as removing unnecessary street furniture, designing systems to manage queuing and pedestrian thoroughfares, and implementing adequate measures to support physical distancing.
It remains government advice to wear a face-covering in enclosed areas where physical distancing is difficult, such as shops.
A date for the re-opening of outdoor hospitality cannot be safely set at this stage. A further update will be provided on 2 July. Further advice from the Scientific Advisory Group has been commissioned based on emerging evidence suggesting communal spaces such as hospitality can present a higher risk of transmission.
Physical distancing guidance remains to stay two metres apart from people outside your household. Advice has also been commissioned on circumstances and settings, including schools and transport, where with additional mitigation it may be possible to balance the risk of a shorter distance.
In response, Dr Liz Cameron, Chief Executive of the Scottish Chambers of Commerce said:
“We welcome today’s further easing of some lockdown measures in Scotland. Many retailers will have some measure of relief to finally have a clearer idea of when they can re-open and what they will need to do to prepare for this while construction firms can now start working again.
“It will be a relief for many employers and will help to save jobs.
“Clearly current physical distancing limits at 2m is unsustainable for many businesses so we welcome the fact that this is being reviewed, with recommendations due within the next 2 weeks.
“We would suggest that the review be extended to consider the scientific evidence as adopted by many other countries together with the advice from the World Health Organisation.
“We all know that science can never be exact so it is important that a broader analysis and view is sought from others before final decisions are taken.
“There’s no doubt the challenges we face due to the global pandemic are extraordinary. But we need to move decisively and listen to the needs of employers as well as scientific advisors if we are to avoid permanent, long term economic collapse.’’
Read more here.
Business support document from Scottish Chambers of Commerce.