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  • Scotland to move beyond level 0

    Created: 04/08/2021

    On 03 August 2021, the Scottish Government announced its plans to move the country beyond Level 0 restrictions. The key points in the Scottish Government's announcement include:

    • The legal requirement for physical distancing and limits on gatherings will be removed on 09 August when all venues across Scotland are able to re-open.
    • Some protective measures will stay in place such as the use of face coverings indoors and the collection of contact details as part of Test and Protect. Capacity limits of 2000 people indoors and 5000 people outdoors will also remain in place although some exceptions may be possible on a case-by-case basis. These will be reviewed on a three-weekly basis to ensure they remain proportionate.
    • Test and Protect will also implement revised guidance for under 18s. This means that the blanket isolation of whole classes in schools will no longer happen and a targeted approach, that only identifies children and young people who are higher risk close contacts, will be adopted. Fewer young people will have to self-isolate, and most will be asked to self-isolate for a much shorter period of time. To allow time to monitor the impacts of these changes, the majority of the mitigations that were in place in schools in the previous term will be retained for up to six weeks. This will help support a safe and sustainable return to education after the summer break.
    • Adults identified as close contacts of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 will also no longer be automatically required to self-isolate for 10 days from 09 August. Anyone who is double-vaccinated with at least two weeks passed since their second dose and who has no symptoms will be able to end self-isolation if they return a negative PCR test. The same conditions will also apply to anyone aged between five and 17 years old, even if they have not been vaccinated. The requirement to take a PCR test will not apply to children under the age of five.

    The Scottish Government has stated that it will continue:

    • to work closely with local incident management teams on appropriate outbreak control measures;
    • to use travel restrictions, as and when necessary, to restrict the spread of outbreaks and protect against the risk of importation of new variants;
    • to advise home working where possible, recognising that some staff will start to return to offices in line with staff wellbeing discussions and business need. we will encourage employers to consider for the longer term, as the Scottish Government is doing, a hybrid model of home and office working - which may, of course, have benefits beyond the need to control a virus;
    • to keep, for a limited period, in place a gateway process through which organisers of outdoors events of more than 5000 and indoor events of more than 2000 will have to apply for permission. This will allow the Government and local authorities to be assured of the arrangements in place to reduce risk; and
    • to issue appropriate guidance to assist individuals and businesses to reduce the risk of transmission as much as possible, such as rigorous hygiene, including regular hand washing.

     

     




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